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Invisible President

From the June/July 2017 Print Edition

We Are the Change We Seek:The Speeches of Barack Obamaedited by e. j. dionne jr. and joy-ann reidbloomsbury, 376 pages, $25 The one thing we know about Barack Obama—at least, we think we know it—is that he is a great orator. From the moment he entered the nation’s consciousness in the . . . . Continue Reading »

Boomer Pharisaism

From the October 2016 Print Edition

In both her logorrheic memoirs, Hillary Clinton writes in the anodyne crisis mode of a government spokesman during an agency meltdown—carefully and dryly, never conceding wrongdoing and always interpreting past decisions in the best possible light. Most political spokesmen and many politicians . . . . Continue Reading »

Stott Bowdlerized

From the May 2016 Print Edition

R ecently I bought a copy of John Stott’s brief and famous exposition of the Christian gospel, Basic Christianity, which I intended to give to a friend. The book was first published in 1958 and has sold several million copies. It is at once simple and refined, gentle and uncompromising, and many . . . . Continue Reading »

Varieties of Religious Certitude

From Web Exclusives

In a recent essay in the Times Literary Supplement , Steven Weinberg suggested that the reason the West has so far outstripped the Islamic world in scientific knowledge is "religious certitude." In the West, the decline of religion has freed science to move forward at an astonishing pace. . . . . Continue Reading »