Wall Street Journal

My Latest Malcolm Moment

The last several days have brought a number of troubling technological stories floating our way, from the unsurprising consequences of earbuds on youngsters and "constant displays " on adults to Foxconn Technologies’ recent struggles with worker suicides to the rapidly-expanding number of tech-themed entries on the Beloit College Mindset List, technology and its inexorable progress seems to be [...]

Why businesses can’t afford to create jobs these days

Today's Wall Street Journal has an important op-ed by Michael Fleisher, president of Bogen Communications, entitled "Why I'm Not Hiring."It makes for discouraging, but important, reading. Meet Sally (not her real name; details changed to preserve privacy). Sally is a terrific employee, and she happens to be the median person in terms of base pay [...]

The Vatican’s crisis response strategy needs help…

Yesterday concluded a three-day media communications conference at Santa Croce in Rome. Wall Street Journal reporter Stacey Meichtry has a mostly fair assessment of the challenge the Church faces in responding to the crisis. Meichtry makes some important points -- namely, that the church's response to the crisis is bound to be decentralized. Bishops cannot [...]

Single Living in a Couple’s World

The door closed, and I crumbled. It was Christmas, and I was alone. I had never been alone on Christmas. Having been raised in a family of six children, I was always surrounded by siblings, wrapping paper, and Ping-Pong table-size dinners. When I married at 19, I moved into a larger family network sometimes requiring [...]

This Just In…

I collect illuminating tidbits from Modernity and offer them to discriminating readers from time to time. Herewith are the most recent for your delectation.   A Parade magazine poll on spirituality reported that "69% of Americans believe in God," and that "77% pray outside of religious services." While the article invites us to find encouragement [...]

The death of the pro-life Democrat?

Rep. Bart Stupak's stupaking on the health care reform bill has led Wall Street Journal columnist William McGurn to wonder if the pro-life Democratic politician, already an endangered species, has finally gone the way of the Dodo: By caving at the last hour, he discredited all who stood with him. (What does it say about [...]

Got an illness? Needles may help.

Acupuncture... I swear by it, and I know many others who do, too. Back when it was considered mere quackery in the West, my physician father was studying it and even practiced it on his college football injuries to decrease inflammation and help with pain. Yesterday, Wall Street Journal health columnist Melinda Beck reported on [...]

Bart Stupak Failed Us

We are the hollow men We are the stuffed men The evening the Stupak-Pitts Amendment passed, I expressed the hope that a new era of pro-life politics had begun. For the first time in a long time, the Democratic Party had an advocate for the unborn around whom others could rally. That was four months [...]

Why Is the Obama Administration Going Soft on Iran Sanctions?

Hilary Clinton's recent comments on Iran sanctions have disappointed the dozen conservative Christian leaders who signed two letters to Congress last year (on September 24 and December 14) expressing support for the House bill intended to stop the rogue nation's nuclear program. The bill, which passed 412 t0 12, would have authorized the White House [...]

Right-wing hippies are not that rare.

Are people like WholeFoods founder and CEO John Mackey really that rare? Many in the media seem to think so. Ever since Mackey published an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal this summer, the press have been treating him as an anomaly. Nick Paumgarten has a piece in The New Yorker about Mackey's quirks, but [...]

How the Stupak-Pitts Amendment May Change Our Politics

  Last Friday night, when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi decided to allow a vote on the Stupak-Pitts Amendment, she may have unwittingly altered the direction of the Obama presidency and the Democratic Party. For the first time in a long time, the pro-life issue is setting the agenda for the national debate on a major [...]

The Stupid Party May Learn a Lesson in Upstate New York

A special election will be held on November 3 in upstate New York that may send a much-needed message to the GOP. New York Congressional District 23 was put up for grabs when nine-term Rep. John McHugh, a Republican, resigned to become Secretary of the Army. The eleven Republican chairs of the district nominated Dede [...]

Thinking as a Catholic on Iran

How should Catholics think about Iran? And how should a Catholic think about Iran? These are two different questions, as an individual person and the Church are two different things, but in trying to follow the news recently, partly through electronic "tweets" directly from Iran, including those from one anonymous Catholic Persian we have on [...]

The Bust: How It Happened, and Where We’re Heading

For the securities industry to unravel as spectacularly as it did in September, many parties had to pull on many threads. Mortgage bankers gave loans to Americans for homes they could not afford, often based on inflated house appraisals and no documentation of income or assets. Mortgage bankers immediately transferred these mortgage loans to Fannie [...]

Music and Meaning

    Before starting any reviews this month, I must exercise (or is it exorcise?) my ire. The Economist magazine offered a December cover story, "Why Music?" that requires comment. The piece asks, "What exactly is it for?" Given the article's art work -- drawings of half-naked women emanating from the brain of a rock [...]

Government Gone Wild! The Problem with a Central Bank

Barack Obama's tax advisers recently posted a piece in the Wall Street Journal about their candidate's tax plans. Their article was designed to triangulate, painting their candidate as a tax cutter and the Republican opposition as a secret tax raiser. It was well-written and well-argued -- not that you can really trust anything you read [...]

The Case Against Barack Obama

For the past six months, I have commented regularly on Barack Obama’s outreach to Catholic voters. Looking over what I have written, I realized that taken together these articles serve as a one-stop reference for Catholics who want to know where Obama stands on the non-negotiable Catholic issues. Before I get to the problems with [...]

John McCain Is Losing the Religious Right

"Evangelicals feel like they have been served their divorce papers," said one major Evangelical leader in an interview on Saturday. "They don't know exactly what they are going to do," he told me, adding, "There are going to be meetings all over the country in the next few weeks to decide our strategy." Events of [...]

The Pope Versus the Media

Given limited space, let us begin by taking the case for media bias as proved. Also, the direction of the bias. No Catholic in his right mind (okay, I'm already being selective) could possibly imagine the Mainstream Media (MSM) to be sympathetic to Catholic interests -- even when they are juxtaposed with the interests of [...]

This Just In

Overwhelmed with information, we often miss revealing tidbits in the news that can be so enriching to our appreciation of life as it is lived early in the 21st century. Herewith, for your delectation, some items you may have missed from early 2008.  Overwhelmed with information, we often miss revealing tidbits in the news that [...]