Economic Interventionism

Mark raises an interesting point: Finally, I’d put an end to the concept of economic or diplomatic sanctions as a meaningful manner of achieving most diplomatic ends (the exception being targeted sanctions solely intended to prevent hostile regimes from obtaining specific materials capable of being used for aggressive purposes). Often left out of the discussion of…

I, troll

Alan Jacobs has some thoughts on the virtues and vices of blogging, vis a vis the seemingly endless “is religious belief rational” merry-go-round. He says As everyone knows, the less complex and nuanced the positions on a blog are, the more comments it gets. This is an Iron-Clad Law of the Internet. Blog posts are…

Getting Our Priorities in Order

Responding to E.D.’s post last week, Roque Nuevo wrote: “the world generally” agrees that national sovereignty, pluralism, respect for individual rights are also “good for the world generally.” This is absolutely a fair point, though I think this list should also include internal security and stability (and I suspect Roque would agree).  But this is…

Snow in Arizona

I think we’re at eight inches so far, with another foot expected today, and Lord knows how much more after that.  I remember when we first planned to move to Arizona, everyone I spoke with talked about the vast deserts, the Grand Canyon, and so forth.  Nobody mentioned the weeks long snow storms and feet…

A poem for Sunday

The Fall of Rome by W.H. Auden The piers are pummelled by the waves; In a lonely field the rain Lashes an abandoned train; Outlaws fill the mountain caves. Fantastic grow the evening gowns; Agents of the Fisc pursue Absconding tax-defaulters through The sewers of provincial towns. Private rites of magic send The temple prostitutes…

calling bullshit on bullshit

Andrew links approvingly to another frivolous experiment that seeks to show that bootstrapping rhetoric isn’t dead, and that if you are hard-working and smart, you can rise up and overcome, etc. etc., into the Toyota and flat screen television of your choice. The journalist talks about this dude, who has ridden a similar stunt to…

“All I want… to kno-ow! All I want!”

lyrics feature adult language The Misfits, to me, are genius, and I don’t know why they don’t get more credit as essential pop-punk forefathers. So many great, two-minute punk rock songs, major-key and ecstatic. And they had what I find an often essential and hard to come by element in music, a refusal to take…

the grad trap

John Schwenkler has some wise words about the college debt trap. As I said in the comments at his blog, I think that there are some pieces missing from that version of the story, but he’s absolutely correct that the college equation is by no means always or even usually a good one for the…

the inevitability dodge

In the comments to ED’s post, Roland Dodds writes “First of all, the ‘meddling’ the United States engages in is the very thing any unipolar (or hegemonic) power would pursue”. Well, you might say that this meddling– the kind of military adventurism, aggressive expansion of the “sphere of influence”, and destructive, anti-democratic destabilization of foreign…

A Happy BAD Day

I interrupt the League’s normal conversational blogging to participate in a grand, two year old tradition of the blogosphere: Blogroll Amnesty Day.   The story of the tradition is best told by others, most notably Jon Swift and skippy the bush kangaroo.  But the bottom line is that today is a day to celebrate all the…

Tales told by idiots, full of sound and fury…

Much has been made recently of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, variations on the teapot analogy, and the Best-selling Atheist Bookseller’s Club.  I’m not sure exactly why so much has been made of this topic, but then again, the question “Does God exist?” has been a fairly important question since time immemorial, permeating just about every…

In defense of snark

I have to disagree with many of the recent responses to Freddie’s attack on Robert Stacy McCain, namely his use of snark and less than kind words on the subject of Palin-worship, the recent rise in faux-populism, etc. that is ransacking the Republican Party and poisoning modern movement conservatism from within.  Since when are conservatives…

Thomas Aquinas Meets The Flying Spaghetti Monster

As the League’s resident theological student, I have been a bit loathe to enter the atheism/spaghetti monster/god or no god (non)debate.  Perhaps the best comment (imo) came from James Williams  in the original thread who said that the Flying Spaghetti Monster (delicious be his name forever and ever) grows out of the intelligent (or lack…

Good show Cardinals…

I thought they put up a damn good fight, and it made for an incredibly intense Super Bowl.  Alas, my team could not quite pull it off tonight…still, we in Arizona are proud of the way they played.  The Steelers played a good game too, but that personal foul by James Harrison was disgusting and…

eating my vegetables

So you should follow Scott’s lead and read Sonny Bunch here… I have been engaged in a little pissing contest with him in his comments section. I really shouldn’t. Look, obviously, I disagree with both Bunch and Scott, but they may be right on some level. The thing is, as Bunch says– “turnabout is fair…

Sunday Poem

P The Salt of the Sea by Philip Primeau Above the eastern sill of sky, at early tide, arrives the sun to light the sea. Its ruddy blood from heaven spills and fills the bowl of bay with morning. The boat by motor moves–it rocks, it falls, from crest to trough and up… The course…

not everyone who says he’s your friend is your friend

So here’s my dilemma. Real partisanship, I mean real, nasty, cut-off-the-country’s-nose-to-spite-the-other-side’s-face partisanship, can be fun, as the average college Republican can tell you. But among it’s many, many downsides is the fact that you can’t ever incorporate or learn from the opinions of people on the other side. What’s more, in an atmosphere of strict…

Capitulation and Retreat

Alright, so apparently I have capitulated too much (as opposed to, say,”the blogger doth protest too much, methinks”) to Larison’s recent critique of my use of the term “dogmatic.” In sum, I used this term in distinguishing religious fundamentalists from Cultural (or Civilization) conservatives.  And I would like to say, for the record, that my…

Authority, Empathy, and Power

A while ago I attempted to wade through some of the differences I noticed between Cultural or Civilization Conservatives, and Fundamentalist Social Conservatives, perhaps because I was worried that too often members of both groups were being labeled erroneously as part of the political Religious Right and wanted to better show how not all religious…