CultureWatch

Bill Muehlenberg's commentary on issues of the day...

Christianity, Reason and the Rise of the West

Dec 17, 2006

Despite the superficial and uninformed criticisms of the secularists and the I-hate-God crowd, much of religion has been a force for good in the world. Specifically, the Christian religion has contributed more to the development of the West and its

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Assessing the US Elections

Nov 10, 2006

Even though it is still early days yet, there have been hundreds of analyses and discussions about the Democratic swing in the recent US midterm elections. There are probably as many different spins being put on the outcome as there

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The Truth About the Religious Right

Nov 9, 2006

There were some very interesting comments about faith and politics made recently by a Victorian Labor MP. Health Minister Bronwyn Pike said that we all must be concerned about the sinister “influence of the religious right” in Australia. (Jason Dowling,

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The Demise of the Australian Democrats

Oct 24, 2006

Several recent events surely spell the end of the Australian Democrats. Three in particular come to mind: their electoral decline of the last few years; the announced retirement of one of their leading stars; and their continued war against religion.

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Separation of Church and State

Oct 20, 2006

There is a lot of confused thinking about the concept of separation of church and state in particular, and the role of faith in public life in general. The former is often used by secularists to insist that religion should

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Faith and Politics. Part 1.

Oct 17, 2006

The recent declaration by Labor MP and aspiring leader/PM Kevin Rudd that the left side of politics needs to capture the Christian vote, and that it is not the sole domain of the right, raises a number of issues.

I

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Faith and Politics. Part 2.

Oct 17, 2006

Social Justice Concerns

A bit more needs to be said about the left’s insistence that they alone are the real champions of social justice. Rudd in particular and the left in general make much of the idea that we need

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Free Speech and the Free West

Oct 16, 2006

Freedom of speech has never been absolute. Crying ‘fire’ in a crowded theatre, we are rightly told, is just not on. So there is often a balancing act going on in democracies. But freedom of speech is a hallmark of

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France, America and the Real World

Oct 4, 2006

Bernard-Henri Lévy is not your average French intellectual, for at least three reasons: what he says usually makes sense; he is more or less conservative; and he does not hate America. That makes him a rather rare chap indeed.

But

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Our Bigoted Australian Democrats

Sep 22, 2006

Many people would be aware of a survey the Democrats launched several months ago to look at the role of religion in politics. Of course, given the secular bias of the Democrats, the real purpose of this “survey” was not

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Is it Ever Right to Kill?

Sep 11, 2006

What does it mean to be pro-life? There is some confusion as to what the term implies. If a person is opposed to abortion, must that same person also be opposed to war, or the death penalty?

Indeed, religious conservatives

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Coming to Terms With Evil

Sep 6, 2006

How does the secular left deal with evil? Well, it has great difficulty in even recognising evil, argues Jewish commentator and radio host, Dennis Prager. In a new article in Citizen Magazine (September 2006) he argues that while a horrendous

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Religion, Politics and the Media

Aug 29, 2006

Federal Health Minister Tony Abbott recently gave a speech in which he sought to defend the place of faith in the political arena. An edited version of his speech was reprinted in the Australian (August 24, 2006). In the article

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An Assessment of the EA Paper on Homosexuality

Jul 13, 2006

The Evangelical Alliance has recently released a paper entitled “Same-Sex Relationships and the Law”. The nine page document also has a five-page “Statement on Marriage and the Family” added to it. Both were penned by Brian Edgar of the EA,

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Why Bother?

Jul 11, 2006

It goes without saying that there are plenty of people who dislike the work I am involved in. Strong criticism comes from all the usual suspects: the various lobby groups, secular humanists, civil libertarians, radical feminists, etc. Such flak goes

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