Archive for: November, 2009

Interview with Jeff Sharlet: The Secret Political Reach Of 'The Family' (National Public Radio)

The Secret Political Reach Of 'The Family' This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. The fundamentalist group The Family has operated secretively with the help of influential congressmen and senators who are members of the group to promote their anti-gay, anti-abortion, pro-free-market ideas in America and other parts of the world, but two sex scandals involving people connected with The […]


The Dangerous Idea of Protecting Religions from “Defamation” (USCIRF)

A Threat to Universal Human Rights Standards November 11, 2009 – WASHINGTON, D.C. – In advance of the upcoming vote on this issue in the UN General Assembly, USCIRF today issued the following Policy Focus explaining the problems with the idea that religions should be  protected from "defamation."     Executive Summary Over the past decade, countries from the Organization of […]


INTERVIEW: John Marcotte, Author of the 2010 California Protection of Marriage Act

INTERVIEW: John Marcotte, Author of the 2010 California Protection of Marriage Act

Rob Cockerham is the genius behind the website, which answers all kinds of questions.  I first became a fan of the site back in 2004 when I was trying to visualize the size of an acre.  Since then, I've been amazed at Rob's "High Profile Sculpture Replacement" experiments, and American Idol Judges costume and groundbreaking scientific experiments.  So I was […]


Calif. Initiative Round-up – Outlawing Divorce, Legalizing Pot, and Christmas Music

In California, voters are allowed to promote ballot initiatives on almost any subject, including those that can fundamentally change the state constitution.  Here are some initatives that are currently in circulation as of November 18, 2009.  Only a few will make it to the ballot, but it is interesting to see what changes some want to see in the law.  Here's […]


US court rules against "I Believe" car license plates (APD)

US court rules against "I Believe" car license plates (APD)

A US federal judge has ordered South Carolina not to issue cross-adorned ”I believe” car number plates, ruling it violates the constitutional separation of church and state. US District Court judge, Cameron Currie, ruled that the state legislature – which voted unanimously last year to approve the number plates that include a cross in front of a stained glass window – had clearly given favoured government treatment to a single faith, and ordered to halt its issue.


UK – Health and safety

Health insurance works by protecting your assets from the high cost of medical care. Without it, your entire life savings could be wiped out by a $300,000 medical bill. It's very complicated, and many people are overwhelmed and annoyed with the process. Here's an explanation of health insurance, and how it got to be the dominant delivery vehicle for health […]


Washington DC – New Turn in Debate Over Law on Marriage (The New York Times)

EXCERPT from New York Times: New Turn in Debate Over Law on Marriage By IAN URBINA Published: November 12, 2009 WASHINGTON – The fight over a proposed same-sex marriage law here heated up this week as the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington said that if the law passed, the church would cut its social service programs that help residents with […]


House Healthcare Vote – A Huge Triumph for the Catholic Church (America Magazine)

EXCERPTS from America Magazine Blog – 11/8/09 The House Vote: A Huge Triumph for the Church Posted at: 2009-11-08 08:02:54.0 Author: Michael Sean Winters It is difficult to over-estimate the degree to which last night's vote in the House, passing a comprehensive health care reform bill, was a huge victory for the Catholic Church. Yes, for the USCCB, but also […]


A Church Scorned: Church, State, Marriage, and the Quest for Power

A Church Scorned: Church, State, Marriage, and the Quest for Power

  "And so, by the power vested in me by the State of ___  and Almighty God, I now pronounce you husband and wife. What God has joined together, let no man put asunder." This pronouncement is the point in a religious wedding ceremony where the power of the state and the power of the Almighty God come together to fuse […]


Scholarship contest asks high school students to revisit JFK speech on separation of church and state

The Religious Liberty Council of the Baptist Joint Committee on its website announced the 5th annual Religious Liberty Essay Scholarship Contest, which is open to all high school students in the graduating classes of 2010 and 2011. According to the BJC, "this year's contest will commemorate the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy's landmark speech about the relationship between his religion […]