Daily Archives: October 7, 2022

(WSJ) Walter Russell Mead–The Question on Putin’s Mind: Would We Risk New York to Keep Odessa Free?

From Mr. Putin’s point of view, in a war in which almost everything is going wrong, nuclear blackmail is working. Why wouldn’t he double down on the one tactic that works?

The only way to deter any possible use of nuclear weapons is to make Mr. Putin believe that the consequences of such use will be ruinous for Russia as a state and for him as its ruler, and that the West won’t flinch when the time for action comes.

To make his threats credible, Mr. Biden needs, first, to make up his mind that he is prepared to stay the course. “The double-minded man is unstable in all his ways,” the Bible tells us. Facing down Mr. Putin in a nuclear standoff is not a course for a man who lacks conviction.

If Mr. Biden is sure of himself, he must build an ironclad coalition at home and abroad behind those threats. Rather than playing down the danger, he needs to dramatize it. Making a prime-time speech to the country, addressing a joint session of Congress, holding an emergency NATO summit—these can all demonstrate Mr. Biden’s commitment to respond with overwhelming force to Russian nuclear attacks.

Read it all.

Posted in America/U.S.A., Foreign Relations, Military / Armed Forces, Politics in General, Russia, Ukraine

Ripon Cathedral 1350th Anniversary Celebrations are announced

A ledger stone, honouring the cathedral’s founding father St Wilfrid, will be dedicated by Archbishop Stephen at the end of a service that will have celebrated the incredible life and mission of St Wilfrid of Ripon.

Throughout this year, in marking the 1350th anniversary of the dedication of Ripon’s crypt by St Wilfrid, the cathedral community has been telling the story of this remarkable missionary bishop with art installations, son et lumieres, lectures and worship.

Wilfrid, a man of great vision, motivation, courage and faith, not only built up the church and brought countless people to faith but also helped the church on the fringes of Europe become more up to date and better connected. This became symbolized in the way he brought Roman influence to bear on the building of a stunning church in Ripon.

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Posted in Archbishop of York Stephen Cottrell, Church History, Church of England (CoE), England / UK, History, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

(Church Times) Mark Vernon–‘The Medieval Mind of C. S. Lewis: How great books shaped a great mind’ by Jason M. Baxter

At one level, this is an accessible study of the academic obsessions of the famous Christian apologist and author of the Narnia stories. But, at another level, it is something far more radical. Baxter examines how Lewis’s thought and imagination are profoundly shaped by writers from Plato and Boethius to Dante. But, in so doing, he gradually reveals Lewis to be a bold re-interpreter of Christianity, in ways that might even help to remake the Christian vision.

Lewis felt at home in the medieval world, and his scholarship on its literature shows how the world-view between then and now has changed, from the experiencing of the cosmos as a divine theophany to the examination of the cosmos via mechanical abstractions, rendering it ripe for domination. Baxter offers a rich account of the nuance with which Lewis describes this latter-day fall.

But he also reveals some of the far-reaching consequences of Lewis’s analysis. Consider the relationship between reason and myth. Lewis realised that the two weren’t opposites, but merged as reason reached its limits.

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Posted in Books, Church History, Poetry & Literature, Theology

(NYT) The Job Market Has Been Like Musical Chairs, but now some cracks are appearing

When Debbie Ricks lost her job as a server in March 2020, she decided to chase a long cast-aside ambition: She would try to become a photojournalist, and get away from her undertipping customers. Last year seemed to be the time for a professional leap.

She had unemployment checks coming in, $1,200 a month. She could supplement food stamps with the pasta and applesauce cans she found on the streets. Most important, every restaurant in Washington, D.C., seemed to be hiring; at any moment, she figured, she could line up a job. But this summer, as her savings dried up and the cost of food rose, she began to feel that many of those backup opportunities had evaporated.

“I do kind of feel like, ‘Oh, Debbie, you should’ve jumped on that,’” Ms. Ricks, 44, said. “But I wanted to get back into journalism, which is what I love.”

After months of a booming job market, which prompted workers to quit and raised wages across industries, the job openings rate declined in August. Layoffs rose slightly, to 1.5 million, though they were still below their historical average. With fears of a recession looming, workers who were flush with opportunities are beginning to feel the anxieties of tightened corporate budgets.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, Consumer/consumer spending, Economy, Globalization, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market

CMU researchers discover a new type of microelectrode array which has the potential to transform how doctors are able to treat neurological disorders

Carnegie Mellon University researchers have pioneered the CMU Array—a new type of microelectrode array for brain computer interface platforms. It holds the potential to transform how doctors are able to treat neurological disorders.

3D printed at the nanoscale, the ultra-high-density microelectrode array (MEA) is fully customizable. This means that one day, patients suffering from epilepsy or limb function loss due to stroke could have personalized medical treatment optimized for their individual needs.

The collaboration combines the expertise of Rahul Panat, associate professor of mechanical engineering, and Eric Yttri, assistant professor of biological sciences. The team applied the newest microfabrication technique, Aerosol Jet 3D printing, to produce arrays that solved the major design barriers of other brain computer interface (BCI) arrays. The findings were published in Science Advances.

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Posted in Health & Medicine, Science & Technology

A Prayer for the Feast Day of Henry Melchior Muhlenberg

Loving God, Shepherd of thy people, we offer thanks for the ministry of Henry Melchior Muhlenberg, who left his native land to care for the German and Scandinavian pioneers in North America; and we pray that, following the teaching and example of his life, we may grow into the full stature of Christ; who livest and reignest with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Posted in Church History, Spirituality/Prayer

A Prayer to begin the day from the Iona Books

Most worthy art Thou, O good and gracious God, of all praise, even for Thine own sake which exceedeth all things in holiness. By Thee only we are hallowed and made holy. As our duty continually bids us, we praise Thee for our glorious redemption, purchased for us in Thy dearly beloved Son, Jesus Christ. Give us therefore the Holy Spirit to govern us. And grant that all things that breathe with life may praise Thee; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, Who reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, for ever and ever.

–Frederick B. Macnutt, The prayer manual for private devotions or public use on divers occasions: Compiled from all sources ancient, medieval, and modern (A.R. Mowbray, 1951)

Posted in Spirituality/Prayer

From the Morning Scripture Readings

Soon afterward he went on through cities and villages, preaching and bringing the good news of the kingdom of God. And the twelve were with him, and also some women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities: Mary, called Mag′dalene, from whom seven demons had gone out, and Jo-an′na, the wife of Chu′za, Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others, who provided for them out of their means.

And when a great crowd came together and people from town after town came to him, he said in a parable: “A sower went out to sow his seed; and as he sowed, some fell along the path, and was trodden under foot, and the birds of the air devoured it. And some fell on the rock; and as it grew up, it withered away, because it had no moisture. And some fell among thorns; and the thorns grew with it and choked it. And some fell into good soil and grew, and yielded a hundredfold.” As he said this, he called out, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”

–Luke 8:1-8

Posted in Theology: Scripture