leadership

The Tyranny of Tolerance

When the Supreme Court re-defined marriage in the Obergefell v. Hodges decision to include same-sex relationships, it was immediately clear that this sea change would create a conflict between this newly-discovered constitutional right, and the first freedom listed in the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights: the right of religious liberty. Everyone from pundits [...]

On Praising Famous Men

With sonorous tones on the annual Founder’s Day in my school, the Reverend Sub-Dean clad in his academicals would slowly recite the long list of those who had contributed of their substance over the years. The Very Reverend Dean kept sober vigil from his stall. The roster was long because the annals were long, and the [...]

Committees, World Without End

C. S. Lewis was a university professor, and knew about the wheels within wheels of committees, with their informal “rings” that use the official bodies and their meetings to get done what they want, but that accomplish very little of the real work of the university, which is intellectual and spiritual. So it is in That [...]

Where Are America’s Habits of the Heart?

The present state of chaos is puzzling, especially for conservatives. Everything would seem to be in place for success. So much favors the conservative cause. Conservatives have plenty of political power since the powers of government are in their hands. The victory in November went beyond Washington and extended to all levels of government—especially the [...]

Where Are the Nation’s Captains?

Traveling by air these days can be stressful. It is increasingly difficult to go on a trip without some incident happening like the recent tussle on United Airlines Flight 3411. More often, however, flights are being canceled or delayed due to mechanical or weather problems. This can lead to hours of waiting at the gates [...]

On the Relative Unimportance of Our Leaders

To most Americans, the election of Donald Trump to the presidency was a surprise, but for a certain segment of the population, the suddenly live prospect of “President Donald J. Trump” evoked stronger reactions. Groups of people that were described as “horrified” included “climate change supporters” (presumably this means “supporters of the fight against climate [...]

On Getting the Government We Deserve

“Now that you are old, and your sons do not follow your example,” said the people to the prophet Samuel, “appoint a king over us, as other nations have, to judge us” (1 Sam. 8:5). We generally look retrospectively at this decision as a mistake, made evident by the stern warning the Lord gives to [...]

A Reflection on the Requirements for Political Office

Politics is a curious business, and not just in the United States as the Big Day approaches: Here in Ontario, Canada, about a four hour drive from where I live, a 19-year-old Brock University political science student, Sam Oosterhoff, was just chosen as the upcoming candidate for the riding of Niagara West-Glanbrook, and could well [...]

Same-Sex “Marriage” and the Crisis of Leadership

Many see the new putative constitutional right to same-sex “marriage” and the developments leading up to it as a result of a crisis of culture. It is that, to be sure, but it is also a result of a crisis of leadership. This has become further apparent in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s Obergefell [...]

A Response to the Leadership Crisis

We live in an age of bad leadership. To judge by appearances, politicians today are mostly driven by partisanship and personal advantage. Business leaders are rapacious and indifferent to the welfare of their employees and customers, and to the value of their products. Artists, intellectuals, scholars, and journalists are more concerned with career and ideology [...]

Obedience and the Christian Life

There is no way around it: the Christian's life is to be one of obedience. “Let him who has ears to hear, hear,” says Jesus. That does not mean that we are beholden only to God, under our own understanding of who God is and what He wants from us. God in His mercy does [...]

More Failures of Leadership from Bishops’ Conferences

Since the presidential election, I haven’t been watching the American news channels much, I haven’t had the heart. The US appears to be about to go over something they are calling the fiscal cliff because of Obama’s triumphalistic behavior: he won, so he’s not compromising with congressional Republicans who want much-needed public spending cuts, and [...]

Leadership Lessons from the Life of “First Man”

Neil A. Armstrong, who died Saturday from complications following heart surgery, lived a unique life experience.  No wonder James R. Hansen’s authorized biography termed him ”First Man.”  Like Adam of old in God’s verdant garden, Armstrong stepped upon another, starker orb (no less the Divine’s) as both an individual and as our representative. The first [...]

Two Deaths, Two Destinations: Havel and Kim Jong-Il

I was just beginning to process the death of Vaclav Havel and all he did for the cause of peace, freedom and democracy in the world when, like the insinuation of a great manipulator, news broke of the demise of Kim Jong Il. Once more the great are over-shadowed by the insignificant, the noble by [...]

Obama Drags Feet to Avoid Offending Political Pals

Leadership, said New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in his press conference Tuesday announcing he would not reverse his decision not to run for president, is something you can't be taught or learn. "Leadership today in America has to be about doing the big things and being courageous." No one doubts that Christie has shown this [...]

On Leadership and Virtue: A Conversation with Alexandre Havard

What makes an effective leader? Aristotle, Augustine, and Thomas Aquinas said it was virtue. French-born lawyer Alexandre Havard agrees: As founder of the Havard Virtuous Leadership Institute (HVLI), he's developed a leadership model based on aretology -- the philosophy of virtue -- that is resonating with top-level leaders in government, the private sector, and the [...]

Christians in the Middle East

Dr. Habib Malik of the Lebanese American University has been a friend for many years. Few men have such an informed and humane view of the sad, even desperate, position of Christians in the Middle East. As a Lebanese Maronite with a Harvard doctorate in intellectual history, what Dr. Malik knows comes from experience as well [...]

Is church making you fat?

Margaret linked to a story this morning that I thought deserved a closer look. While studies have shown that regular church attendance is linked to greater levels of happiness, lower rates of substance abuse, and better marriages, a new study has reported that middle-aged people who are religiously active are also more obese. Is it [...]

A New Economic Direction

At long last, private-sector jobs are growing again. They rose 159,000 in October, as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Even more encouraging are the revisions to earlier surveys, indicating that the improvement in new jobs was not a one-time event. Job gains for August and September were revised up to 250,000 from 157,000. [...]

On Being “Divisive”

Every group has its code words. These words serve an im­portant social function -- they enable the members of the group to deliver a harsh judgment on others with­out accountability. In the Catholic world, when someone is called "divisive," it means he is too conservative to be trusted. Those who are "divisive" threaten the "unity [...]

A New Knighthood

The world is full of talented failures -- people who either didn't live up to their abilities, or who did, but in a way that diminished their humanity and their character. God made us to be better than that. And our nation and our Church need His people to be better than that. Scripture tells [...]

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