What Do We Owe the Puritans?

So we had an interesting discussion at Berry College tonight, featuring our own Jim Ceaser, on why Tocqueville talks up the Puritans and slights the Declaration of Independence. Ivan the K already mentioned the observation of our French visitor R. L. Bruckburger , who reminded us that the . . . . Continue Reading »

Varieties of Social Scruffiness

Peggy Noonan is speculatin’ : The baby boomers who for 40 years, from 1968 through 2008, did the grunt work of the great abundance—work was always a long-haul trip for them, they were the first in the office in 1975 and are the last to leave the office to this day—know the era they . . . . Continue Reading »

Affectation, Authenticity, Authority

Once, our own Jim Ceaser summoned forth an evocative dialogue between Con and Pomocon . The drama hinged on how compatible were the two concerning those Three A’s — affectation, authenticity, and authority. Though their subtle advances and defenses could never be mistaken for the likes . . . . Continue Reading »

Happy Birthday to Lincoln

Here is a short excerpt of an address I’ll be delivering at Geneseo College devoted to Lincoln’s Bicentennial: Of course, the occasion for my lecture today is the Bicentennial celebration of Abraham’s Lincoln’s birth. It’s worth noting that today is also the bicentennial . . . . Continue Reading »

The Persistence of the Catholic Moment

This essay by Richard John Neuhaus, who passed away January 8, 2009 , was originally printed in the February 2003 issue of First Things .In 1987, while I was still a Lutheran, I published a book titled The Catholic Moment: The Paradox of the Church in the Postmodern World . There I argued that the . . . . Continue Reading »

Zizek and Meta-Jewry

I brought up Adam Kirsch vs. Slavoj Zizek once before , wisely dropping the matter after one post, but now they’re back, and anyone interested should check out their (surely final) exchange at The New Republic . I don’t know if it’s worth the time to make heads or tails of . . . . Continue Reading »