Truth and Freedom

First Things | Michael Novak | Jan. 2, 2009

Human liberty depends on an accurate grasp of the human condition, not as we might like it to be, but as it is: “The truth shall set you free.”

Let us suppose, for instance, a situation in which truth is rendered servile by some contemporary enthusiasm. If truth is held captive by a powerful force of attraction, can the human beings who live under that force ever find a way to liberty? Only by luck, great courage, and long perseverance.

During the past hundred years, ideologies have often trumped the unimpeded search for truth. Here is where the sentence from Orwell becomes pivotal. “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.” [Read more…]

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The Skeptical Inquirer

Touchstone | Edward Tingley | June, 2008

If Only Atheists Were the Skeptics They Think They Are. Unbelievers think that skepticism is their special virtue, the key virtue believers lack. Bolstered by bestselling authors, they see the skeptical and scientific mind as muscular thinking, which the believer has failed to develop. He could bulk up if he wished to, by thinking like a scientist, and wind up at the “agnosticism” of a Dawkins or the atheism of a Dennett—but that is just what he doesn’t want, so at every threat to his commitments he shuns science. [Read more…]

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Pope Benedict, Logos, Chaos, and Freedom

American Thinker | Andrew Walden | May. 3, 2008

Speaking at the White House, Pope Benedict XVI April 16 embraced America’s “quest for freedom….” Benedict explained: “Freedom is not only a gift, but also a summons to personal responsibility. Americans know this from experience – almost every town in this country has its monuments honoring those who sacrificed their lives in defense of freedom, both at home and abroad.”

Today, as in the Civil War, Logos is on the side of freedom. And in spite of the secular media effort to obfuscate, Benedict’s message couldn’t be clearer: Logos rises to defend against the secular call for submission to the Chaos unleashed by Islam. [Read more…]

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Be Happy: The American Refusal to Deal with Suffering

American Thinker | Jude Acosta | May. 3, 2008

God bless America. I mean that with all sincerity. We are a nation of hopefuls and always have been. We march on Washington. We cure diseases that have wracked humanity for eons. We break records and run faster-than-four-minute miles. We split atoms and conquer space. We manifest our destinies and defy the presence of gorges, rivers, and mountains that threaten to block our collective will. [Read more…]

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Communism is a Powerful Anti-Christian Heresy

Ultimate Things Communism Deadly Heresyby Dennis E. Engleman –

Throughout the Church age, the mystery of iniquity worked subtly and insidiously to foster unbelief. Satanically inspired humanism, which had received such impetus during the Renaissance and Enlightenment, reached its nihilistic nadir in the early twentieth century in the form of atheistic communism. The utopian ideology which is at the root of communism, and in fact of most secular thought, is seldom clearly realized even by its adherents; it has become part of the unexamined ideological inheritance of the post-Enlightenment era.

“One has to realize what communism is,” insisted Father Seraphim Rose. “Not merely a power-mad political regime, but an ideological-religious system whose aim is to overthrow and supplant all other systems, most of all Christianity. [Read more…]

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Introduction: utopia vs. nationhood

New Criterion
Roger Kimball January 2007

I think I know man, but as for men, I know them not.
—Jean-Jacques Rousseau

In a memorable passage at the beginning of The Critique of Pure Reason, Kant evokes a soaring dove that, “cleaving the air in her free flight,” feels the resistance of the wind and imagines that its flight “would be easier still in empty space.” A fond thought, of course, since absent that aeolian pressure the dove would simply plummet to the ground.

How regularly the friction of reality works that way: making possible our endeavors even as it circumscribes and limits their extent. And how often, like Kant’s dove, we are tempted to imagine that our freedoms would be grander and more extravagant absent the countervailing forces that make them possible.

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Elizabeth Fox-Genovese, Historian, Is Dead at 65

New York Times Margalit Fox January 7, 2007

Elizabeth Fox-Genovese, a noted historian and women’s studies scholar who roiled both disciplines with her transition from Marxist-inclined feminist to conservative public intellectual, died on Tuesday in Atlanta. She was 65 and had lived in Atlanta for many years.

Ms. Fox-Genovese’s husband, the historian Eugene D. Genovese, confirmed the death, citing no specific cause. He said that his wife had lived with multiple sclerosis for the last 15 years and that her health had declined after she underwent major surgery in October.

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Jean-François Revel: liberty’s champion

Ed. Some of you may have been familiar with Ravel. His “How Democracies Perish” is a good read as I recall (it’s been a few years…). He died last April, 2006.

Open Democracy Henri Astier May 4, 2006

France’s foremost political thinker was also her most misunderstood, says Henri Astier.

Jean-François Revel, who died on Sunday 30 April at the age of 82, was not just the grand old man of French political literature; he was a leading exponent of freedom in the tradition of Raymond Aron, Alexis de Tocqueville and Baron Montesquieu.

[Read more…]

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