Daily Archives: December 1, 2011

Google Chrome Edges Firefox for Second Place in Internet Browser Battle

Google’s Chrome Web browser has leapfrogged Firefox to claim the number two slot in the browser battle, according to Web analytics firm StatCounter.

Chrome held 25.69 percent of the worldwide market in November 2011 compared with Firefox’s 25.23 percent. Internet Explorer remains the top browser globally with a 40.63 percent share of the market.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Blogging & the Internet, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Science & Technology

(RNS) D.C. Tosses Complaint Against Catholic University Dorms

The District of Columbia has dismissed a complaint against The Catholic University of America that charged the school’s return to same-gender student housing discriminates against women.

In an order issued Tuesday (Nov. 29), the city’s Office of Human Rights said offering only single-sex dormitories is not unlawful discrimination under the District’s Human Rights Act.

To follow the complaint’s reasoning would lead to “a prohibition on same-sex bathrooms, locker rooms, and sports teams, which would lead to absurd results,” the order said.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Education, Law & Legal Issues, Other Churches, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic, Young Adults

Anglican Communion Institute–South Carolina: The Disciplinary Board Decides

…the findings in respect of Bishop Lawrence are even broader. As we have noted before, under the new Title IV all clergy are required to report to the Intake Officer “all matters which may constitute an Offense.” The failure by the Board to refer these matters to the Intake Officer thus necessarily constitutes a finding by them, the body responsible for the trial of bishops under Title IV, that not only has there been no abandonment, neither has there been a violation of any of the other disciplinary canons. In other words, Bishop Lawrence has been given the broadest possible clearance.
Fourth, turning to the final sentence in Bishop Henderson’s statement in which he emphasizes that he is speaking only for himself, we note that the express reservation here underscores the fact that the rest of his statement is made on behalf of the entire Board. As to the substance of this sentence, we are unsure what Bishop Henderson means when he expresses his hope that the minority in South Carolina will be given a “safe place.” We are unaware of any allegations that dissident clergy have been disciplined or otherwise treated unfairly by Bishop Lawrence or the Diocese. There was a single allegation concerning a chapel comprised of dissenters from the diocesan majority, but this related not to any alleged discipline or persecution but only to whether this chapel would be organized as a diocesan parish or mission. Bishop Lawrence has in the past vigorously refuted this allegation, pointing out that he has worked closely with this chapel to provide them with priests, including the licensing of priests from other dioceses. In any event, this allegation was dismissed along with the others.

Perhaps Bishop Henderson was using the term “safe place” to suggest that Bishop Lawrence permit the dissenters to perform same sex blessings, call priests who are in same sex relationships or practice communion of the unbaptized, practices that are widespread elsewhere in TEC but prohibited in the Diocese of South Carolina. There is much esteem and affection for Bishop Henderson in the Church, but his hopes on this point are simply those of one bishop expressed openly to another. For our part, we have little doubt that Bishop Lawrence will continue to require that all under his episcopal authority adhere to traditional standards of sexual ethics, standards required by diocesan canons, regardless of any decision made to approve blessings at next year’s General Convention.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, - Anglican: Analysis, Ecclesiology, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: South Carolina, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils, TEC Polity & Canons, Theology

A Florida A&M University Student’s Death Turns the Spotlight onto Hazing

Mr. [ Robert] Champion, a hard-working clarinet player, tried out twice before being selected as one of six drum majors in the spring of 2010. He died just hours after marching on the field at the Florida Classic, a football game between Florida A&M and its longtime rival, Bethune-Cookman University.

He collapsed in a bus parked at an Orlando hotel, where the band was staying. It was evening, and the buses should have been locked, Dr. White said. After interviewing band members, he said, it appeared that Mr. Champion had been punched repeatedly by a small group of band members on the bus as part of a hazing ritual, then vomited and passed out. When others in the bus could not revive him, they called for an ambulance. He died a short time later at a hospital….

“It’s kind of a ”˜don’t ask, don’t tell’ culture,” said Christopher M. Chestnut, the family’s lawyer. “No one’s shocked. Everyone knew it happened.”

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Children, Education, Health & Medicine, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Psychology, Young Adults

(IAFN) Advent a time for Anglicans worldwide to engage with birth registration for all

The International Anglican Family Network (IAFN) is using the season of Advent to encourage member Churches of the Communion to get involved with making birth registration a universal reality.

More than just a legal formality, birth registration opens the door to education and healthcare. Without it people may not be able to obtain a passport, own a house or land, or marry.

“In this season of Advent, as Christians everywhere wait to celebrate the birth of Jesus, our Network is calling on Anglican churches to partner with state and other agencies to ensure that babies born in 2012 and beyond are registered”, said IAFN’s Ian Sparks.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Children, Health & Medicine, Marriage & Family

David Novak–Should Same Sex Couples have the Right to Marry?

The question of same-sex marriage concerns every morally sensitive citizen. And so it is no wonder that it has been the subject of debate everywhere, among politicians and jurists, scholars and intellectuals.

Professor Martha Nussbaum and I have locked swords over this issue on many occasions, such as in Sexual Orientation and Human Rights in American Religious Discourse. Her recent essay in the California Law Review entitled “A Right To Marry?” provides a welcome opportunity to return to this hotly debated question, and sharpen the points of difference between us….

She draws upon precedents that seem to be already changing the legal definition of marriage from a union of a man and woman into the union of two persons, irrespective of their sex. Conversely, I want to change or undo those very precedents that have led to a situation where what might be called “the traditional Western definition of marriage” can now be seriously and powerfully challenged.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anthropology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Judaism, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Other Faiths, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Theology

Lent and Beyond offers Thanksgiving for the Report from South Carolina

Read it all; and thanks.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Spirituality/Prayer, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: South Carolina, TEC Polity & Canons

Latest Global Broadband data–In wireless, Korea (99.3 lines per 100 inhabt.) and Sweden (93.6) Lead

Guess please where ths U.S. is and what the The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) average is first. Then go and check it out.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Globalization, Science & Technology

Billy Graham lands in the hospital with a possible case of pneumonia

Evangelist Billy Graham was resting comfortably Wednesday night in an Asheville hospital after being admitted with a possible case of pneumonia.

A statement from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association said Graham was admitted Wednesday morning to Mission Hospital for respiratory problems. It’s Graham’s fifth hospital stay since 2007. In May, he spent five days at Mission, also for pneumonia.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Aging / the Elderly, Evangelicals, Other Churches

Thursday Mental Health Break–What you didn't know the Toys Were Doing while You Slept

Address Is Approximate from The Theory on Vimeo.

Watch it all–wonderful fare from Theoryfilms; KSH.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * General Interest, Media, Science & Technology

ABC Nightline–Rampant Methamphetamine abuse in America's Heartland

Pseudoephedrine is found in over-the-counter cold medicines such as Sudafed. While these pills may provide relief to cold sufferers, to criminals who are in the business of making meth, these pills are gold. Meth-makers legally buy as much of the raw product as they can at local pharmacies and drug stores.

A federal law designed to crack down on methamphetamine abuse sets a hard limit on pseudoephedrine: No more than nine grams, or about seven packs, per customer each month. But to get around that limit, which is electronically tracked by drug stores in certain states, meth users will team up so that each can buy the maximum at once. [Deputy director Dan] Smoot explained that it’s a practice known as “smurfing,” named after the little blue cartoon characters, Smurfs, who are small, but mighty as a team.

Caught this one on the morning run. The video is highly recommended if you have time. Did you know that Kentucky is number 3 in America in Methamphetamine production? I didn’t. Read it all–KSH.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Drugs/Drug Addiction, Economy, Law & Legal Issues, Police/Fire, Rural/Town Life, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

(WSJ) Wall Street Pushed Federal Reserve for Europe Action in Late September Private Meeting

Wall Street executives, in a private meeting with a top Federal Reserve official in late September, recommended a coordinated effort by central banks to remedy the European financial crisis, according to Fed documents received in an open-records request.

The meeting, led by Louis Bacon, founder of hedge fund Moore Capital Management, preceded a joint action Wednesday by the world’s major central banks, which banded together to provide liquidity to the markets through cheap U.S. dollar loans….

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --European Sovereign Debt Crisis of 2010, Corporations/Corporate Life, Credit Markets, Currency Markets, Economy, Euro, Europe, European Central Bank, Federal Reserve, Politics in General, Stock Market, The Banking System/Sector, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--, The U.S. Government

Pope Benedict XVI Teaches on The Prayer of Jesus

Jesus’ prayer touches all the phases of His ministry and all of His days. Hardships do not impede it. Indeed, the Gospels clearly show that it was a custom of Jesus’ to pass part of the night in prayer. The Evangelist Mark recounts one of these nights, after the hard day of the multiplication of the loaves, and he writes: “Immediately He made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, to Bethsaida, while He dismissed the crowd. And after He had taken leave of them, He went into the hills to pray. And when evening came, the boat was out on the sea, and He was alone on the land” (Mark 6:45-47).

When decisions become urgent and complex, His prayer becomes more prolonged and intense. Faced with the imminent choice of the Twelve Apostles, for example, Luke emphasizes that Jesus’ prayer in preparation for this moment lasted the entire night: “In these days He went out into the hills to pray; and all night He continued in prayer to God. And when it was day, He called His disciples, and chose from them twelve, whom he named apostles” (Luke 6:12-13).

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Religion News & Commentary, Christology, Ministry of the Ordained, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Pope Benedict XVI, Roman Catholic, Spirituality/Prayer, Theology

(WSJ) Ashraf Khalil–Where Is the Muslim Brotherhood?

Emerging from the front lines in Tahrir Square earlier this week, with red, streaming eyes and a gas mask dangling from his neck, Mohamed Ghoneim was in an angry mood. But the target of the 43-year-old secular activist’s ire wasn’t the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces or even the combined police and army troops who were battling protesters with tear gas and buckshot a few meters away. His anger was reserved for the people who weren’t in the square: the Muslim Brotherhood.

“We’re not surprised that the military was unhappy with the revolution, but we’re very, very disappointed in the Muslim Brotherhood,” Mr. Ghoneim said, spreading his arms in an arc. “Look around you. How many beards and niqabs [Islamic full-face veils] do you see? Almost none. The Brotherhood can push a button and bring out four million people, but we are 80 million. These people around me are Egypt.”

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Egypt, Islam, Middle East, Other Faiths, Politics in General, Religion & Culture

A Prayer for the Feast Day of Nicholas Ferrar

Lord God, make us so reflect thy perfect love; that, with thy deacon Nicholas Ferrar and his household, we may rule ourselves according to thy Word, and serve thee with our whole heart; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Church History, Spirituality/Prayer

From the Morning Bible Readings

To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David the servant of the LORD, who addressed the words of this song to the LORD on the day when the LORD delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul. He said: I love thee, O LORD, my strength. The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised, and I am saved from my enemies.

–Psalm 18:1-3

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Reuters Article on Disciplinary Board Decisions vis a vis Bishop Mark Lawrence

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: South Carolina

Archbishop Rowan Williams' Advent letter to Anglican Primates

In spite of many assurances, some Anglicans evidently still think that the Covenant changes the structure of our Communion or that it gives some sort of absolute power of ”˜excommunication’ to some undemocratic or unrepresentative body. With all respect to those who have raised these concerns, I must repeat that I do not see the Covenant in this light at all. It sets out an understanding of our common life and common faith and in the light of that proposes making a mutual promise to consult and attend to each other, freely undertaken. It recognizes that not doing this damages our relations profoundly. It outlines a procedure, such as we urgently need, for attempting reconciliation and for indicating the sorts of consequences that might result from a failure to be fully reconciled. It alters no Province’s constitution, as it has no canonical force independent of the life of the Provinces. It does not create some unaccountable and remote new authority but seeks to identify a representative group that might exercise a crucial advisory function. I continue to ask what alternatives there are if we want to agree on ways of limiting damage, managing conflict and facing with honesty the actual effects of greater disunity. In the absence of such alternatives, I must continue to commend the Covenant as strongly as I can to all who are considering its future.

These questions are made all the more sharp by the fact that the repeated requests for moratoria on problematic actions issued by various representative Anglican bodies are increasingly ignored. Strong conscientious convictions are involved here. No-one, I believe, acts out of a desire to deepen disunity; some believe that certain matters are more important than what they think of as a superficial unity. But the effects are often to deepen mutual mistrust, and this must surely be bad for our mission together as Anglicans, and alongside other Christians as well. The question remains: if the moratoria are ignored and the Covenant suspected, what are the means by which we maintain some theological coherence as a Communion and some personal respect and understanding as a fellowship of people seeking to serve Christ? And we should bear in mind that our coherence as a Communion is also a significant concern in relation to other Christian bodies ”“ especially at a moment when the renewed dialogues with Roman Catholics and Orthodox have begun with great enthusiasm and a very constructive spirit.

Read it all (my emphasis).

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Covenant, Anglican Primates, Anglican Provinces, Archbishop of Canterbury, Episcopal Church (TEC), Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), Theology

Surprise! Many Americans are confused by credit card terms!

In reporting these observations, however, the Bureau is mindful that they are drawn from a non-random sample of roughly 5,000 credit card consumers.

First, many complaints show consumers struggling to understand the terms of credit cards and associated products like debt protection services. These show a mismatch between consumer understanding and product function or issuer practice.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Personal Finance

Local Paper Article on Disciplinary Board Decisions vis a vis Bishop Mark Lawrence

A disciplinary committee of the Episcopal Church has decided that Bishop Mark Lawrence has not abandoned his church.

The judgment came Monday after the Disciplinary Board of Bishops reviewed 63 pages of material submitted by individuals in the Diocese of South Carolina who asserted that recent actions taken under Lawrence’s leadership amounted to a withdrawal from the church.

But the board — led by the retired bishop of the Diocese of Upper South Carolina, the Rt. Rev. Dorsey Henderson — decided otherwise, citing Title IV, Canon 16 of the church’s constitution.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: South Carolina