Daily Archives: November 27, 2009

David Harsanyi on why the Stock Transaction Tax is a Terrible Idea

For the investor (the person who risks the capital to create real live self-sustaining jobs), every investment, whether it results in a profit or not, would be taxed two more times.

What is near certainty is that this bill will succeed at driving traders to international markets that are escaping the stilted centralized economy that DeFazio and Perlmutter feel the need to champion.

It’s a given that this misguided vengeance against Wall Street is comfort food for populist legislators, but “Wall Street” isn’t stocked exclusively with revolting would-be criminals. It is made up of retirees, small-business owners, entrepreneurs and parents who invest in their kids’ college funds. At last count, nearly 50 percent of Americans are, on some level, invested in the stock market.

If one was a hopeless skeptic, he might believe these legislators were trying to undermine private sector growth by re-appropriating wealth in such a ham-handed way. Even reliable liberal Sen.Chuck Schumer said that a Wall Street transaction tax had the potential to “harm economic recovery efforts by deterring capital investment.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Budget, Economy, Globalization, House of Representatives, Office of the President, Politics in General, President Barack Obama, Senate, Stock Market, Taxes, The National Deficit, The U.S. Government, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner

This year’s New Jersey Budget gap grows fivefold

The state on Wednesday told bond investors it is facing a $1 billion hole in this year’s budget ”” a shortfall five times bigger than previously disclosed ”” and will cut funding for schools, municipalities, higher education, hospitals and pension plans to close the gap.

For months, Governor Corzine has been hinting at the need for such cuts as New Jersey grapples with the fallout from the deepest economic crisis since the Great Depression. Officials previously acknowledged a deficit of at least $8 billion for fiscal year 2011 and $190 million for this fiscal year. The depth of the state’s current shortfall was not revealed until Wednesday.

“It is going to be a gut-wrenching experience,” said Bill Dressel, executive director of the New Jersey League of Municipalities.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy, Politics in General, State Government, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

Steve Salerno: Can America afford the 'vanity tax'?

However, that pricey pendant most assuredly does serve as a symbol of an unfortunate quirk in American buying habits. We are a nation that specializes in producing and consuming items that have little purpose except to facilitate extravagance, and it’s a proclivity that hardly begins or ends with jewelry. Millions of us insist on paying a great deal of money for goods that would cost little or nothing in a world where everything was ranked strictly by functionality.

Although bemoaning taxes is the true national pastime, the one tax nobody really considers is this “vanity tax”: the difference between what a thing needs to cost (to fulfill a given function) and what it ends up costing (after being artificially inflated by imperatives besides function).

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Personal Finance

The Anglican Communion Secretariat Post of Director for Communications Job Description

The Secretary General intends to appoint a Director for Communications to implement this vision. The post will be based at St Andrew’s House, London and will involve providing leadership and support across the full range of communication roles, both internal and external. The development and implementation of a communications strategy including the editing of the website are current priorities.

The candidate will:

* Have an understanding of and be sympathetic to the life and work of the Anglican Communion;
* Have significant experience in the field of communications, including the development of appropriate strategies for a variety of situations;
* Have experience of working collaboratively as part of a team, and of managing staff;
* Have experience of Website editing and development, with appropriate technical skills;
* Have excellent writing and personal communications skills;
* Be familiar with modern IT, and its application in a modern office context;
* Be prepared and able to travel extensively throughout the Anglican Communion and elsewhere.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, - Anglican: Primary Source, Media

ACNS: The Bible in the Life of the Church project

Following the resolution passed at ACC-14 (14.05) ‘The Bible in the Life of the Church’ a Steering Group has been appointed to take the work forward. It meets for the first time with the Chair, Archbishop David Moxon, Bishop of Waikato, New Zealand at the Anglican Communion Office from November 30th to December 3rd, 2009.

The work of the project will be undertaken in six regional groups hosted, in the main, by theological colleges within the Communion and a number of ‘user groups’ who will test out the work of the regional groups. Each regional group will have a coordinator who will be a member of the Steering Group. The Regional Groups are located in East Africa (St Paul’s, Limuru, Kenya), Southern Africa (University of KwaZulu-Natal and the Anglican House of Studies), North America (University of the South, Sewanee, USA), SE Asia (Trinity Theological College, Singapore), Oceania (drawing on the resources of the theological colleges in Melbourne, Australia) and Europe (Queen’s Foundation, Birmingham, England).

In addition to the co-ordinators of the Regional Groups the Steering Group will have three ”˜theological consultants’ from Nigeria, Cuba and USA.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, - Anglican: Primary Source, Theology, Theology: Scripture

Channel 4–Colm O'Gorman: Irish catholic Church abuse was 'systemic'

Jon Snow talks to Colm O’Gorman, the Executive Director of Amnesty International in Ireland, who was a victim of sexual abuse perpetrated by a Catholic priest as a teenager.

The video link is provided–some 10 1/2 minutes. Watch it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Children, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Ireland, Ministry of the Ordained, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Roman Catholic, Sexuality, Theology

(London) Times: Four archbishops colluded to cover up child sex attacks

The Roman Catholic Church in Ireland connived with the authorities in a cover-up spanning decades to shield paedophile priests from prosecution, an official report concluded yesterday. Hundreds of crimes against children were not reported as the four archbishops of the Archdiocese of Dublin remained wedded to the “maintenance of secrecy, the avoidance of scandal, the protection of the reputation of the Church and the preservation of its assets”.

Instead, the church hierarchy shuffled the sex offenders from parish to parish, allowing them to continue to prey on victims. In some cases paedophile priests were even promoted. The 750-page report by the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse on the Dublin archdiocese ”” the second significant inquiry this year to expose appalling levels of sexual abuse of minors in Ireland under the aegis of the Roman Catholic Church ”” said that it had uncovered a “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy throughout the period that it investigated between 1975 and 2004.

It said that the State had helped to create the culture of cover-up and that senior police officers regarded priests as “outside their remit”.

“The State authorities facilitated that cover-up by not fulfilling their responsibilities to ensure that the law was applied equally to all and allowing the Church institutions to be beyond the reach of the normal law enforcement processes,” it concluded.

Read the whole article.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Children, England / UK, Ireland, Ministry of the Ordained, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Roman Catholic, Sexuality

RTE News: 'Litany of abuse' in Dublin Archdiocese

The report states that the Commission has no doubt that clerical child abuse was covered up by the Archdiocese of Dublin and other church authorities.

It states that the structures and rules of the church facilitated that cover-up. It also says that State authorities facilitated the cover up by allowing the church to be beyond the reach of the law.

It claims that the welfare of children, which should have been the first priority, was not even a factor considered in the early days by State and church authorities.

The preservation of the good name, status and assets of church institutions was the first priority, according to the report, which states that priests were seen as the most important members of the institution.

The Commission says that it has identified 320 people who complained of child sexual abuse during the period 1975-2004.

Read it all and make sure to follow all the links.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Children, England / UK, Ireland, Ministry of the Ordained, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Roman Catholic, Sexuality

Irish Times: Commission finds Church covered up child sex abuse

The Commission of Investigation into Dublin’s Catholic Archdiocese has concluded that there is “no doubt” that clerical child sexual abuse was covered up by the archdiocese and other Church authorities.

The commission’s report covers the period between January 1st 1975 and April 30th 2004. It said there cover-ups took place over much of this period.

In its report, published this afternoon, it has also found that “the structures and rules of the Catholic Church facilitated that cover-up.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Children, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Ireland, Ministry of the Ordained, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Roman Catholic, Sexuality, Theology

The Full 98 page document of the British Columbia Decision

Read it carefully and read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Law & Legal Issues

A Statement from the Chancellor of the Anglican Diocese of New Westminster

Mr. Justice Stephen Kelleher of the Supreme Court of British Columbia in Reasons for Judgment released today ruled that the four parish properties under ownership dispute in the suit brought against The Diocese of New Westminster and Bishop Michael Ingham by 22 leaders of four dissident congregations remain within the Diocese of New Westminster.

In a 98 page, 336 paragraph decision, Justice Kelleher has upheld the integrity and authority of Structures, Canons and Constitutions of the Diocese of New Westminster and the autonomy of the Anglican Church of Canada.

Read the whole thing.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Law & Legal Issues

Anglican Network in Canada: BC Supreme Court issues mixed decision in church property dispute

Mr Justice Stephen Kelleher of the British Columbia Supreme Court issued a mixed decision today in the case involving the Anglican Church of Canada (ACoC) Diocese of New Westminster and four Greater Vancouver parishes in the Anglican Network in Canada.
The four parishes ”“ St Matthew’s (Abbotsford), St Matthias & St Luke’s (Vancouver), St John’s Shaughnessy (Vancouver) and Church of the Good Shepherd (Vancouver) ”“ had asked the courts in early September 2008 to clarify their Trustees’ responsibilities in light of hostile action taken by the Diocese of New Westminster. After all four parishes voted overwhelmingly in February 2008 to disaffiliate with the ACoC and realign with the Anglican Network in Canada (ANiC), the bishop purported to terminate and replace the Trustees and take control of two of the churches’ properties and their bank accounts. ANiC is now part of the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), a new Anglican province formed as a result of the worldwide split in the Anglican Church over profound disagreement on issues of doctrine.

Mr. Justice Kelleher found that the Bishop of New Westminster did not have legal or canonical authority for his purported termination and replacement of the Trustees, who were validly elected by the congregations and who control the use of the properties. However, he said the Trustees were required to exercise their authority “in relation to the parish properties in accordance with the Act, as well as the Constitution, Canons, Rules and Regulations of the Diocese.” He then said he would “leave it to the parties to arrive at a workable solution”. This clearly leaves the parties in a difficult position as they dispute the interpretation of those documents, particularly the Constitution.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Law & Legal Issues

Anglican diocese retains ownership of four disputed church properties

The Anglican diocese of the Lower Mainland will be able to retain ownership of four disputed parish properties worth more than $20 million, the B.C. Supreme Court ruled today.

Justice Stephen Kelleher decided against conservative Anglican dissidents who went to court claiming they deserve to have legal control of St. John’s Shaughnessy Anglican Church in Vancouver — one of the largest Anglican congregations in Canada — as well as three other Lower Mainland church properties.

The clergy and trustees at the four conservative parishes left the 600,00-member Anglican Church of Canada last year and joined a smaller conservative breakaway Anglican organization called the Anglican Network in Canada, with about 3,500 members.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Law & Legal Issues

Fears stalk global markets on Dubai debt crisis

Shares in London tumbled as the market opened this morning, following steep losses in Asia, as investor panic over banks’ exposure to Dubai’s growing financial problems gathered pace.

The FTSE 100 index of leading UK shares fell by 83.46 points to 5,110.67 in early trading, adding to yesterday’s loss of 170.68 points. The FTSE bounced back, to fall by 12 points to 5,182.13 after more than an hour of trading but all eyes will be on American shares when Wall Street opens later today after being shut for Thanksgiving yesterday.

Masayoshi Okamoto, head of dealing at Jujiya Securities in Tokyo, said: “I think we won’t know the full impact of Dubai until Monday after we see what happens in New York, where bank shares are likely to be hit pretty hard.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Economy, Globalization, Middle East, Stock Market, The Banking System/Sector

From the Morning Scripture Readings

Surely the righteous shall give thanks to thy name; the upright shall dwell in thy presence.

–Psalm 140:13

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture