Web Surfing on a Saturday Morning
Dave Black writes an interesting essay on the church. Dave provocatively asks, "Why do so many of our congregations look for potential leaders outside of their own ranks instead of raising and training their own men for pastoral leadership?" That raises an interesting question: Are seminaries, under the control a central agency in the church, the best means of training the clergy. I don't really know enough to comment on this matter intellignetly, but it seems that ministerial education, like all other forms of education, has become increasingly centralized, with the consequent decline in quality. Increasingly, seminaries place less emphasis on systematics and languages, and more concern on "practical" and "managerial" aspects of ministry. Doesn't this inevitably lead to spiritual sterility?
Paul Craig Roberts is burning up the keyboard. Commenting on Donald Rumsfeld's silly statement that, "Partly it's [the insurgency] a function of what the Syrians and the Iranians are doing," Roberts writes:
You see, the facts that the US invaded Iraq on false pretenses, killed and maimed tens of thousands of Iraqis, shot down women and children in the streets, blew up Iraqis' homes, hospitals and mosques, cut Iraqis off from vital services such as water and electricity, destroyed the institutions of civil society, left half the population without means of livelihood, filled up prisons with people picked up off the streets and then tortured and humiliated them for fun and games are not facts that explain why there is an insurgency. These facts are just descriptions of collateral damage associated with America "bringing democracy to Iraq."
Tom Fleming reminds us that charity begins at home (scroll down for article).
Though I would like to see something done about the immigration problem, I agree with Ron Paul that HR 418, the REAL ID Act, is not the answer to the problem. This is one more example of what Sam Francis has termed anarcho-tyranny. Here you have a huge problem created by the state, which has willingly allowed its borders and sovereignty to be violated by lawbreakers. But instead of taking care of the problem at the border, the White House has asked for just an additional 210 border patrol agents while Congress has passed legislation that "establishes a massive, centrally-coordinated database of highly personal information about American citizens." Let freedom ring!
Charley Reese takes on the Bushies over our coming Iranian invasion. Charley is correct that it would only be rational for the Iranians to pursue nukes. Remember, Iran is surrounded by American forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, and neighboring countries (Pakistan, India, and Israel) are also nuclear powers. Let's hope we aren't taken over the brink in Iran, because war there will make the Iraqi invasion look like a "cakewalk."
The Internet is crawling with interesting writing that would never see the light of day elsewhere. Here is a great little post at The House of Degenhart (here is another) and here is a nice little historical essay by pastor Bret McAtee. I especially like Bret's comparison of the GOP and the Girondists. If my experience is any example, Bret will find out that Americans don't know very much about European history (Jacobins, Jacobites--who is Jacob?).
The Derb sees the light. He says that Ted Kennedy is right--it's time to declare victory and bring the troops home. Derbyshire, and perhaps John O'Sullivan, represent the only serious thinking going on over NR, once the center of the conservative movement.