Daily Archives: August 19, 2013

Most of U.S. Is Wired, but Millions Aren’t Plugged In

Mr. [Elmer] Griffin is among the roughly 20 percent of American adults who do not use the Internet at home, work and school, or by mobile device, a figure essentially unchanged since Barack Obama took office as president in 2009 and initiated a $7 billion effort to expand access, chiefly through grants to build wired and wireless systems in neglected areas of the country.

Administration officials and policy experts say they are increasingly concerned that a significant portion of the population, around 60 million people, is shut off from jobs, government services, health care and education, and that the social and economic effects of that gap are looming larger. Persistent digital inequality ”” caused by the inability to afford Internet service, disinterest or a lack of computer literacy ”” is also deepening racial and economic disparities in the United States, experts say.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Blogging & the Internet, Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Personal Finance, Politics in General, Science & Technology, Theology

(SMH) Google knows what you're doing tomorrow

Google has taken the next step in its transformation from a web-search engine to the Star Trek computer. The company announced last week that it is rolling out new features that will allow you to use Google.com as, essentially, a search engine for your own information.

Until now, if you typed the words “what am I doing tomorrow” into the Google search bar, you’d get a series of web results for pages whose titles include that phrase or similar keywords. With the new features, provided you’re logged into Google and maintain a Google Calendar, you’ll see something more particular to you.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Science & Technology

(CEN) South Carolina clergy deposed by TEC

{The new TEC Diocese in South Carolina]…announced it will depose over 100 clergy loyal to the Rt. Rev. Mark Lawrence and the… Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina. On 10 July 2013 the faction loyal to the national Episcopal Church published a list of clergy whom it said remained in good standing with the Episcopal Church for having expressed its loyalty to their leadership. Those who had not given their allegiance to the minority faction would be removed from the ordained ministry….

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: South Carolina, Theology

(CSM) In Egyptian village, Christian shops marked ahead of church attack

Before the violence that shook this small village last week, there were warning signs.

On June 30, when millions of Egyptians took to the streets to protest against now ousted President Mohamed Morsi, residents of Al Nazla marked Christian homes and shops with red graffiti, vowing to protect Morsi’s electoral legitimacy with “blood.”

Relations between Christians and Muslims in the village, which had worsened since Morsi’s election in 2012, grew even more tense as Islamists spread rumors that it was Christians who were behind the protests against Morsi and his ouster by the military on July 3.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Coptic Church, Egypt, Islam, Middle East, Muslim-Christian relations, Other Churches, Other Faiths, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Violence

(Der Spiegel) Almut M̦llerРMerkel 3.0: Stasis You Can Believe In

Since the euro crisis began, many governments across Europe have been swept from power. France last year saw a presidential campaign heavily focused on Europe, and calls for alternatives to austerity have grown ever louder. So why is it that Germany, the country key to solving the euro crisis, seems immune to this polarization of views on the future of economic and monetary union?

Partly it has to do with the Greens and the Social Democrats, two opposition parties struggling to differentiate their euro policies from Merkel’s government, a coalition of her conservatives and the business friendly Free Democrats (FDP). Both the Greens and the SPD have supported all major euro rescue measures thus far. Even the Left Party, a stronger critic of the government, recently confirmed its overall commitment to the common currency. There is currently no anti-euro party in Germany parliament, with newcomers such as the euro-skeptic Alternative for Germany, media attention notwithstanding, yet to demonstrate their potential at the ballot box.

One reason is that Germans are still not feeling the pinch of the crisis. On the contrary, they continue to hear good news about strong exports, lower unemployment and economic growth. With the election looming, it is no surprise that the Merkel administration is wary of spoiling this mood of complacency by addressing the downsides of the “German model” for fellow euro-zone member states.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --European Sovereign Debt Crisis of 2010, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Credit Markets, Currency Markets, Economy, Euro, Europe, European Central Bank, Foreign Relations, Germany, Globalization, Politics in General

(ACNS) Malawi: Bishop Tengatenga 'Saddened' By Dartmouth College Decision to Withdraw Job Offer

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Africa, America/U.S.A., Anthropology, Education, Ethics / Moral Theology, Malawi, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Theology

(Reuters) Indonesian president worried by growing religious intolerance

Indonesia’s President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said he was concerned by growing religious intolerance in the country with world’s largest Muslim population, which many analysts say his administration has failed to contain.

Indonesia has recently seen a series of increasingly violent attacks on religious minorities like Christians, Shia Muslims and members of Ahmadiyah, a small Islamic sect which is considered heretical by mainstream Muslims.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Asia, Indonesia, Inter-Faith Relations, Islam, Muslim-Christian relations, Other Faiths, Religion & Culture

A Monday morning Resource–The Network for New Media, Religion and Digital Culture Studies

Check it out.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, --Social Networking, Blogging & the Internet, Education, Media, Religion & Culture, Science & Technology

(CEN) Andrew Symes–Anglican Mainstream ten years on

Some have concluded that making our voice heard in the public square about sex and family life, or about anything controversial, is counter-productive to mission. But the opposite is the case. I worked in South Africa for more than 12 years, mostly in poor communities. I saw how some evangelical and charismatic Christians happily did church in their affluent homogenous groups, and refused to address publicly the iniquities of apartheid. Other churches were bravely confronting injustice and involved in compassionate social action, but were unable to promote loudly the life-saving message of sexual self control in the context of the devastating HIV/AIDS epidemic, often because their pastors were compromised in that area. In both cases fear of unpopularity prevented prophetic Gospel-driven action to save lives.

Anglican Mainstream remains committed to the local church’s vital role in pastoral care, evangelism and mission in our own nation and worldwide in contexts of genuine poverty and oppression. These will be main themes at GAFCON 2 in Nairobi in late October. But listening to the revolution in our culture will also involve discerning what is wrong as well as affirming what is good. The gospel of the Kingdom is good news, but inclusion depends on repentance, and faith in the one who has not changed.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Church of England (CoE), Ethics / Moral Theology, Evangelicals, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Other Churches, Sexuality, Theology, Theology: Scripture

(NY Times) Layoffs Taboo, Japanese Workers Are Sent to the Boredom Room

For more than two years, [Shusaku Tani]… has come to a small room, taken a seat and then passed the time reading newspapers, browsing the Web and poring over engineering textbooks from his college days. He files a report on his activities at the end of each day.

Sony, Mr. Tani’s employer of 32 years, consigned him to this room because they can’t get rid of him. Sony had eliminated his position at the Sony Sendai Technology Center, which in better times produced magnetic tapes for videos and cassettes. But Mr. Tani, 51, refused to take an early retirement offer from Sony in late 2010 ”” his prerogative under Japanese labor law.

So there he sits in what is called the “chasing-out room.” He spends his days there, with about 40 other holdouts.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Anthropology, Asia, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Japan, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Theology

A Prayer to Begin the Day

O Saviour, who in the completeness of Thy manhood art still Babe of Bethlehem and Child of Nazareth, restore in me the simplicity I have tampered with, the transparency I have obscured, the childlikeness I have lost, that the shattered fragments of my innocence may be assembled anew in the beauty of Thy sanctity; who with the Father and the Holy Ghost art God forever and ever.

–The Pastor’s Prayerbook

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

Praise the LORD! O give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures for ever! Who can utter the mighty doings of the LORD, or show forth all his praise?

–Psalm 106:1-2

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

(NPR) What's Next For Egypt: 3 Scenarios

For two years, the conversation on Egypt centered on how to build a democracy. Suddenly the discussion has turned much darker, with some wondering aloud whether the largest Arab nation is hurtling toward civil war.

The bloody crackdown by Egypt’s security forces has raised the specter of a protracted conflict pitting the military against the Muslim Brotherhood, the country’s most powerful political force.

Egypt’s escalating crisis is far too volatile for any declarative statements, analysts say. But here are three possible scenarios that could play out:

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Defense, National Security, Military, Egypt, Ethics / Moral Theology, Foreign Relations, History, Middle East, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Theology

A Day in the Life of a Truro Cathedral Chorister

From here. More Sunday Worship here

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Liturgy, Music, Worship

Archbishop of York Announces An Independent Review Of Deceased Clergy Files

The Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu has today announced that there will be an independent review of all files relating to deceased clergy who served in the Diocese of York from before 1950 to the present.

On July 22nd 2013 the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, announced the launch of an Independent Inquiry, led by HH Judge Sally Cahill QC, into the Church’s handling of reports of alleged child abuse by the late Robert Waddington, a former Dean of Manchester.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Provinces, Archbishop of York John Sentamu, Church of England (CoE), History, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

Sunday Mental Health Break–Christina Bianco does Multiple Diva Impresssions as she sings

Watch and listen to it all-she is amazing.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * General Interest, Music

Christopher Wright–Learning to Love Leviticus

The Old Testament laws…exemplify how God wanted certain kinds of situations to be handled. They embody values and objectives, on the assumption that people would understand how to extrapolate from a particular case to a general principle and apply that to new situations. So to take all of the Old Testament laws at face value is to misunderstand their original intent in the first place.

How commands can function in relationships and communication. If I hear someone on the street shout, “Freeze! Put your hands behind your head!” I need to know two things. First, who is shouting? If it’s a police officer””someone whose authorized command I need to submit to””then yes. Second, is he addressing me? Likely the answer is no. It’s addressed to the guy who just robbed a street vendor and is running away. So the command has authority because of who gave it, but it is not addressed to me in that moment. It claims my respect””I should not break the law in that way either””but it does not claim my compliance.

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Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Aldous Huxley, call your office Department– Soraya Chemaly on Sex and Teenage Sleepovers

[The new theme title is in honor of this post this post and in reference to cultural degradation in the “new” world of the West in the 21st century–KSH].

Please not that this article will not be suitable for all blog readers

Would you rather teach your kids that sex is dangerous and forbidden or that it is permissible and… well, awesome? Are you a “responsible-sex-is-good” parent, or more in the “scare-them-silly” camp? It seems logical to me that the same way I try to teach my kids to exercise, sleep well and be good people, I would teach them to have healthy sex and sleep with other good people.

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I will take comments on this submitted by email only to KSHarmon[at]mindspring[dot]com.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Anthropology, Children, Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Sexuality, Teens / Youth, Theology