Modern Pensées

Reconsidering theology, philosophy, culture, economics, and politics

Archive for the ‘Science’ Category

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Obamacare and job growth

Thorough article analyzing “Why the Arabic World Turned Away from Science” (HT: Nancy Pearcey)

50 pictures of some pretty crazy church architectures (HT: HG)

Christian-ese that should be put to rest

 

Fake Apple Store in China

Scathing anecdotal piece of UCC minister complaining about all the conversations with people who are “spiritual but not religious

Thank you for sharing, spiritual but not religious sunset person. You are now comfortably in the norm for self-centered American culture, right smack in the bland majority of people who find ancient religions dull but find themselves uniquely fascinating.

Sad but true comic:  “The Evolution of Intellectual Freedom” (HT: BL)

I always look forward to 9Marks eJournals, this one entitled, “How Much Should You Pay Your Pastors?” was particularly good.

NYTimes article, “One Size Fits Nobody” on the crazy world of (women’s) clothing sizes

Thrice new single, “Promises”

 

ps.  Sorry it has been forever since posting… for the handful of you that find these posts interesting

Best Links of the Week

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The End of Church Planting?  Interesting article that isn’t as provocative as the title.  Definitely worth a read and a place at the table for missiological theory of church planting, challenging the dominant paradigm of the entrepreneurial paid pastor/planter.

How to use rewards/frequent-flyer credit cards to create a self-fulfilling profit loop (buy certain gold coins, get rewards/miles, deposit gold in bank, pay off credit card with gold deposited into bank).

Third Millennium Ministries has its own iPhone and Android apps.  The content of ThirdMill is truly top shelf.  I am of the opinion that Third Mill is probably one of the most important ministries of our time and all on a shoestring budget.  If you care at all about the Gospel and the future of the church you ought to donate to them.  I am thankful that there are actually some forward thinking strategists that are creating excellent scalable content capable of penetrating that glaring lack of theological training of pastors worldwide.

The Decline of the Nuclear Family.  Some pretty staggering statistics and commentary on the status of family in the U.S.

Mayim Bialik (Blossom, Amy Farrah Fowler) of Big Bang Theory is actually a PhD and published in Neuroscience (HT: BL)

Mortgage companies are still ‘robo-signing’

Centrist Tom Coburn has an interesting debt proposal – I was definitely not expecting a proposal from one of the ‘Gang of Six’

77 year old Congressman confronts gun wielding intruder

An interesting piece giving some provocative thoughts regarding the Cosmological Argument

There are several layers of awesome to this Pepsi ad (coming from a staunch Coca-Cola fan):

Best Links of the Week

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Best Links of the Week

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The Invisible Stock Bubble

Russell Moore has an interesting piece on the parallels between what Romance Novels do for women and what Pornography does for men.

Here is a nice rebuttal of Harold Camping and the whole world ending on 5/21/2011.  Also a man spent his life savings putting up those billboards everywhere.  This highlights the need for doing theology in community.   Doing theology on islands doesn’t turn out well.  Also, the ministry has an estimated worth of $72 million, although this may be a bit misleading as the lionshare of this is in FCC licenses.

Reportedly on 60 Minutes this evening, George Hincapie weighs in on Lance Armstrong and the use of PEDs.  This is interesting because unlike Floyd Landis and Tyler Hamilton, Hincapie actually has credibility and is probably the cyclist closest to Armstrong.  Would be pretty sad if true.

Ray Lewis says one unintended consequence of the NFL Lockout will be a rise in crime.   I think I am actually inclined to agree with Lewis and am wondering if he read Freakonomics recently.

Some pretty bold words from a former economic adviser to Barack Obama on fiscal and monetary policy as it relates to the dollar

N.T. Wright weighs in on Stephen Hawking’s comments about heaven

War Dog

Where the 12 Apostles Died

Tim Challies annual, “Where & Why We Buy Books

Medvedev warns of new Cold War over missile defense shield

Egyptian Saif al-Adel now acting leader of al Qaeda

Iran reportedly building rocket bases in Venezuala

Dark Tower trilogy of movies and two tv series may be nixed.  For those who don’t know this is some of Stephen King’s best work and was a very seminal body of work for the television show LOST.

San Francisco man reportedly “cured” of AIDS

Several Hedge Fund managers buying up massive amounts of farmland

Some Wikileaks documents of Gitmo files shed light on enhanced interrogation techniques and unintentionally bolster their effectiveness

Shallow Small Groups:

Really well produced and themed time lapse:

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Recent test at CERN shows some evidence of new atomic/subatomic element(s).  The data is statistically significant at 3 standard deviations so far, however, the gold standard in particle physics and astrophysics is five standard deviations.  Hence, some have remained cautious about the findings thus far.  In a similar vein, here is an interesting piece on neutrinos.

Two shot in British nuclear submarine.  Reminds me of Capt. Rameus’ classic line, “Be careful what you shoot at in here… some things don’t react to kindly to bullets”

Stephen Moore writes in WSJ, “We’ve Become a Nation of Takers, Not Makers

Fascinating case of a baby born at 21 weeks, 9.5 inches long, and less than 10 ounces… and still going strong.

Random stuff from cars, to trailers, to whole homes, and even body parts will be washing up on the West Coast for the next three years.

Interesting book review from Ed Stetzer- “5 Ministry Killers and How to Defeat Them

Bernard Lewis has a nice piece in the WSJ entitled, “The Tyrannies are Doomed

Ben Bernanke and FED sought to hide that TARP money went to foreign banks

Infographic:  Failing schools across America

12 year old whiz kid talks about astrophysics

Some interesting new texts written in code and potentially concerning Jesus, the crucifixion, and early Christianity

Unreasonable Doubt” – Examines the roots of atheism

John Piper gives a few thoughts regarding what Koran burning is analogous to and what it is not analogous to.

 

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Dealing With Difficult People:  Narcissists.  The best article I’ve read this year.

IBM computer to play against Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter.  Should be another interesting man vs. machine conflict.

Doug Wilson piece entitled “Calvinism, Eschatology, and the New Media

Andy Crouch, “Ten Most Significant Trends of Last Decade

A number of people in California recently won $150 by correctly guessing 4 of the 6 numbers of the California Lottery.  The winning numbers were:  4, 8, 15, 25, 47, 42

Apparently the Catholic Church is doing a realty series on exorcism, but I heard this was news to the Vatican.

New US $100 bills to have 3-D technology.

AIG is recapitalizing.  Unbelievable… have any lessons been learned?

Banks repossess over a million homes in 2010.  Also, foreclosures rising.

Drunk Scientists accidentally pour wine on semiconductors and make some scientific discovery.

WSJ article entitled “Bye-Bye PCs and Laptops

The Catholic Church and science.  Personally, I am a huge fan of science and think there is a fair degree of agreement between science and Christianity, far greater than many acknowledge.

Green blob from Hubble Space Telescope.

Major Dick Winters passed away earlier this month.  Thankful for this man and countless anonymous men just like him.

China’s new stealth fighter.

Haitian amputee soccer.

Is the Black Church Dead?

The precipitating event was an essay posted last February on the Huffington Post by Eddie Glaude, Jr., a young African-American religion professor at Princeton who gave his column the eye-catching title, “The Black Church Is Dead,” and continued that with an equally arresting lead:

“Of course, many African-Americans still go to church,” Glaude began, noting surveys that track the higher-than-average religiosity of American blacks. “But the idea of this venerable institution as central to black life and as a repository for the social and moral conscience of the nation has all but disappeared,” he said.

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Provocative piece entitled, “Artists Build the Church.”  Aesthetics without a doubt have been marginalized in the church.  Another work that should be brought into this discussion is Hans Urs von Balthasaar’s Trilogy on “The Glory of the Lord.”  Shame on Protestants for letting a Catholic write probably the best treatment of aesthetics (alongside Wolsterstorff’s work).   God’s holiness and God’s glory are at the core of God’s character.  Hence, art and aesthetics are at the very center of our Christian faith.

4th Amendment Underclothes – metallic print protest clothing.  For those of you unaware the 4th amendment to the U.S. Constitution states the following:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Department of Homeland Security commandeering domain names.

It takes Iran over 30 years to notice Star of David placed on roof of their national airline’s (Iran Air) headquarters.  The building was designed by Israeli architects.

Which Cashback credit cards to use at which retailers/websites.  This was rather helpful.

A number of top shelf scientists publish a cautionary letter regarding the new X-ray machines that has some good scientific concerns that dispel a lot of the misinformation regarding the safety of the new machines.   I think some more substantial science is in order here particularly for the elderly, children, pregnant, and those prone to various cancers on or close to skin (testicular, breast…).

If you haven’t heard yet, there were more WikiLeaks documents released of roughly a quarter million wires principally between emabassies.  Of interest is a large amount of security intel, policy, military strategy, and embarassing details about world government figures.  Of interest, it seems that North Korea did in fact provide Iran with the missile vehicles to launch nuclear warheads.  This is very disconcerting as it means that North Korea likely has the nuclear bomb and rockets to launch them in.

Tony Blair and Christopher Hitchens debate whether Religion is good for the world or not.  I am inclined to think that religion, in the conventional sense of the word, is not good for the world.  I am also unsure what is meant by the word, “good” as well.  I would argue from different angles and presuppositions than Hitchens but likely arrive at similar conclusions.  I would be very happy if every religion based on human self-righteousness would permanently cease.  I don’t think anything is “good” apart from Christ, hence I think that all non-Christocentric religion is bunk.

Flexible, Disposable E-readers?

Should MIT Teach Poetry?”  I have already ranted on here about the affects of removing the Christian worldview on higher education (see post on UCF scandal).   The point is that our Universities have become trade schools.  Further, these trade schools are increasingly more expensive (astronomically expensive compared to inflation rates) while becoming less effective at producing marketable laborers.  For many employers experience is > or = to education.  If one’s education were limited to such a narrow sub-field of a field within a faculty within a college within a University… there is no foundation for the knowledge/building to stand.  Of course MIT should teach poetry.

Congressman Mike Coffman (Rep. Colorado) writes a cogent piece on why not to raise taxes during a recession. (HT: SB)

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