Michael Brendan Doughtery of National Review makes a strong case that liberalism, in its classical, Lockian sense, is antithetical to a Christian and conservative vision of society. A government and society dedicated to protecting an individual’s right to do whatever, as long as that practice does not infringe on anyone else’s rights to do what they want, inevitably tends towards elevating a set of “neutral” values as good and treating any divergence from those values as social deviancy. Liberalism does not create a world where a multi-value society flourishes, but inevitably demands that all members of that society become liberal. I have written about this in the past as it relates to abortion and Satanism.
Doughtery argues for a vision of classical conservatism in the tradition of Edmund Burke and Russell Kirk as an alternative to liberalism. While Doughtery does not mention National Conservatism, he is responding on the movement’s behalf to George F. Will’s conservative defense of classical liberalism…
When “contemporary” music hit the church scene starting in the 1960s, really picking up and winning out by the late 1990s, one of the arguments for the change in style is that it would be more familiar and appealing both…
Iceland must be pleased that it is close to success in its program of genocide, but before congratulating that nation on its final solution to the Down syndrome problem… Now, before Iceland becomes snippy about the description of what it…
Stephen Wolfe has an excellent piece at Mere Orthodoxy on the consequentialist theory of voting. He challenges the assumption that voting for a candidate is an endorsement of their moral life, and that it is necessarily hypocritical to tolerate immorality for a candidate in a given situation, but not another. His demonstration that the assumption of endorsement is misplaced is strong, but ultimately fails to convince in his conclusion. His principle is,
Voting for a candidate is an endorsement of the candidate’s moral life as it pertains to his external conformity to civil righteousness sufficient to qualify the candidate for civil office, qualifications judged by the likely preponderance of good or bad in the long-term consequences of his term in office determined by his political actions after mediated through the institutional constraints of his office and the checks and balances of other institutions.
The candidate’s ability to enact policies, the details of those policies, and the bearing of the candidate’s morality on those policy enactments are the only endorsement of the candidate’s moral life made by voting. Wolfe in his conclusion states, “And as I argued above, a moral standard as a first condition for vote-worthiness is arbitrary, unless it is shown to be relevant to good civil outcomes resulting from civil actions in a particular time, place, and set of circumstances mediated through particular political institutions…”
U2 has long been my favorite band. They have been able to innovate and adapt, while consistently remaining true to their roots and maintaining friendships among the band members. Their 2014 album Songs of Innocence, despite the criticism on how it was released through iTunes, was an artistic masterpiece. It captured the grunge, punk feel of their youth even as it showed the maturation of 35 years in their reflection upon that era in Ireland.
In December the band is releasing a new album, Songs of Experience, as a companion to Songs of Innocence. While Innocence focused on their youth during the Troubles, Experience will be shaped by expressions of affection to those closest to the band. They released a single from the album early, “You’re The Best Thing About Me,” which is supposed to be representative of the album’s feel.
And it is awful.