The Common Good

God's Politics Blog

Am I Liberal or Conservative? Or Both? (Part 1)

It wasn't until I started working in the world of religion and politics with advocacy organizations on Capitol Hill that I ever heard anyone define Christians as liberal or conservative. These terms were not used in my church experience. But when I recall different experiences working in the church, I can see how some members of the churches where I worshiped then, where I worship now, and in congregations across the country, fit into these categories. I've found it difficult to [...]

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Slavery Apology--One Step Forward

I'm still "down under" -- wrapping up my book tour in Australia. The news from the U.S. reminds me of Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s first act on the day after his swearing in as prime minister. In a moving speech, he delivered a speech of apology to the aboriginal people.

Tuesday, for the first [...]

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Exploitation Isn't Kosher

Kosher law forbids you from boiling a calf in its mother's milk. But how are human mothers who work in slaughterhouses being treated? In the wake of revelations about the working conditions at kosher slaughterhouses, some rabbis are demanding a higher standard of worker treatment -- and they're willing to lay down the law. [...]

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Exploitation Isn't Kosher

Kosher law forbids you from boiling a calf in its mother's milk. But how are human mothers who work in slaughterhouses being treated? In the wake of revelations about the working conditions at kosher slaughterhouses, some rabbis are demanding a higher standard of worker treatment -- and they're willing to lay down the law. [...]

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Tennessee Church Shootings: The Culture War's Latest Casualties

Tragically, the culture war crossed over fighting words to shooting bullets. Once again, a community of faith was caught in the crossfire. While 25 children sang songs from "Annie," a gunman fired three shotgun blasts inside the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church. The seven people shot and two people murdered on Sunday morning are the latest victims of the culture war.

Sadly, this wasn't the first shooting to occur at a house of worship in the [...]

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Tennessee Church Shootings: The Culture War's Latest Casualties

Tragically, the culture war crossed over fighting words to shooting bullets. Once again, a community of faith was caught in the crossfire. While 25 children sang songs from "Annie," a gunman fired three shotgun blasts inside the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church. The seven people shot and two people murdered on Sunday morning are the latest victims of the culture war.

Sadly, this wasn't the first shooting to occur at a house of worship in the [...]

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Rand: Solution to Terrorism Is Not Military

Some compelling quotes from a recent Rand Corp. study caught my eye in today's Washington Post -- the emphasis is added:

The Bush administration's terrorism-fighting strategy has not significantly undermined al-Qaeda's capabilities, according to a major new study that argues the struggle against terrorism is better waged by law enforcement agencies [...]

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MoveOn at Ten

MoveOn.org pioneered the art of online political advocacy. As it celebrates its 10th anniversary, it can look at enormous successes and a host of new questions. Do politicians take mass e-mails seriously? Is advocacy by e-mail being replaced by text messaging and social networking? Can online activism be turned into on-the-ground organizing? They're questions that face [...]

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What Is Your Vote Based On?

All of us who choose to vote must base our vote on something.

For some people, it's party. They're Democrats or Republicans and from election to election, they support whomever the party serves up. For others, it's a litmus-test issue -- abortion, homosexuality, war, whatever. For others, it's fear or hope or some other "gut-level" appeal -- whoever scares or inspires them the most gets their vote. And for still others, it's a "group thing" -- they belong to a group (a race, a [...]

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The IMF Files: They Want to Believe

Andrew Berg, an International Monetary Fund African department policy adviser, is a nice man. I know this because he spent some time talking earnestly with me after an IMF press conference in which I'd asked a pretty confrontational question about Malawi, whose 2002 famine is often partly attributed to IMF (and World Bank) advice, and whose current bumper crops are attributed to ignoring it.

Berg looks a tiny bit like The X Files' Agent Skinner, but what this conversation [...]

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