The depth of identification with Charlie Hebdo and its staff, are a moment of much needed candor in assessing what used to be called “the war on terror.”
When you want to understand the changing demographics of religious identification in the United States, you turn to Mark Silk. He has two posts up, one about the decline of Catholicism in the Northeast and another about the rise of the Nones. Both are must-reads that can prevent a lot of foolishness in the discussion about secularization.
Not sure how other people conceive of heaven, but for me, I hope I get to be the kid in this video:
Yesterday, I put up a link to an article by Dennis Prager that amounted to a preemptive strike against Pope Francis’ forthcoming encyclical on the environment. His article was more of a rant than an argument so I only posted it with a brief comment. Within minutes, friends besieged me with two other articles that warrant a more detailed reply, but which amount to the same thing, a preemptive effort to downplay or contradict an encyclical precisely no one yet knows will say.
Voodoo economics is making a comeback. Cong. Tom Price is planning to introduce a rules change that will require "dynamic scoring" of budget proposals. The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget examines the plusses and minuses, as it were, here. I smell a lot of shenanigans in this proposal.
You have begun to see some conservatives launch preemptive strikes against Pope Francis' anticipated encyclical on the environment. Here is one of the most outrageous, from Dennis Prager. I do not know what Mr. Prager's religion is, but no Catholic could pen this sentence:
This past Sunday, when the Church in the U.S. celebrates the Feast of the Epiphany, the choir at St. Matthew's sang Poulenc's "Videntes Stellam" at the Offertory. Here is a brilliant recording of this exquisite work.
The late Governor Mario Cuomo will be buried this morning from St. Ignatius Church in New York City. This weekend, when I learned of his death, I re-read his famous 1984 address at Notre Dame entitled, “Religious Belief and Public Morality: A Catholic Governor’s Perspective.”
There is a lot to think about in this article from the NYTimes this weekend, comparing Red States v. Blue States, in terms of cost-of-living, different sources of economic growth, etc. Most startling may be the rise in inequality in the blue states, a clear consequence of the financialization of the economy, as New York and Connecticut top the list now in terms of income inequality. The money quote:
This article at The Hill suggests that Pope Francis and the GOP will be at odds in the coming year. Of course, there is plenty in the Holy Father's words to rile Democrats too, but at least there now appears to be some equal opportunity riling going-on, which we have not seen in the stateside Church for some time. For 35 years, if you did not agree with the way the 'i's" were dotted or the "t's" crossed in Humanae vitae, you were labeled a bad Catholics.