The Atlantic posted a collection of pictures of women from different countries during the war. I really enjoyed looking through it.
Walter Russell Mead recently pointed to Jeffrey Toobin’s article on Clarence Thomas and his wife, Virginia. Toobin profiles Thomas’ orginalist interpretation of the Constitution and shows that Thomas is probably the most intellectually rigorous conservative justice on the Supreme Court. Toobin points out that Thomas’ thought helped to blaze a trail for the Tea Party movement. Mead writes that the recent revival of the Second Amendment as a protection for individuals’ right to own guns could possibly mean that the Tenth Amendment could eventually come into play again, which would curtail federal authority. I don’t wish to make any predictions, and I hardly have a fully thought out philosophy of constitutional law, so I’ll just leave you to read the articles if you’re interested.
Filed under: America in the Modern World | Tagged: American liberalism, American political culture, Clarence Thomas, conservative movement, Constitution, constitutional law, Jeffrey Toobin, Supreme Court, Tea Party, Virginia Thomas, Walter Russell Mead | Leave a Comment »
Joel Wing of Musings on Iraq posted a 37-minute documentary on the Iran-Iraq War (in 4 YouTube installments). It’s pretty good (if “good” is the right word for a film about that war) and has a lot of footage. A couple of notes:
- Iran’s human wave attacks, Iraq’s first use of chemical weapons against Iran, and the beginning of the Kurdish uprising are all in the second installment.
- When the USS Vincennes accidentally shot down an Iranian passenger airplane, the Iranians misinterpreted it as evidence of the superpowers’ unwavering commitment to supporting Iraq. I’d heard about how much that mistake intimidated the Iranians before, but I didn’t know that it affected their desire to continue fighting.
Doug Wilson writes about Christ’s pattern of “table fellowship”:
Careful study of the gospels shows us five distinctive characteristics of Christ’s table fellowship. First, He consistently sought out fellowship with outcasts. Secondly, those outcasts responded to Him with joy. Third, the religious establishment routinely grumbled about it. Fourth, the table fellowship was preceded by a call to radical discipleship. And fifth, such incidents frequently conclude with Jesus talking about His redemptive mission.
As he notes, “we should be careful not to let our embrace of His call to radical discipleship in the fourth point turn us into the grumblers of the third point.”
I’d like to try to look at this myself to notice this pattern.
Writing at the Chronicles Magazine blog, Aaron Wolf writes that J.R.R. Tolkien’s idea of Middle Earth came from a poem in Anglo-Saxon(the earliest form of English) by Cynewulf called either “Christ” or “The Ascension.” Wolf provides a translation by Charles Kennedy:
Hail Day-Star! Brightest angel sent to man *throughout the earth* [in Middle Earth], and Thou steadfast splendour of the sun, bright above stars! Ever Thou dost illumine with Thy light the time of every season. As Thou, begotten God of God, Son of the True Father, without beginning abodest ever in the splendour of heaven, so now for need Thy handiwork bessecheth boldly that Thou send the bright sun unto us; that Thou come and shed Thy light on those who long ere this, compassed about with mist and in the darkness, clothed in sin, sit here in the long night, and must needs endure the dark shadow of Death.
The reference to Christ as the “brightest angel” is a bit jarring at first, but you can see that any potential confusion is clarified in the middle of the poem: “begotten God of God, Son of the True Father, without beginning abodest ever in the splendour of heaven.” Perhaps Cynewulf was using “angel” in the sense of “messenger.”
Hat tip: Joel via Google Reader