Mendel called model for balancing science, religion

Mendel called model for balancing science, religion

As a 19th-century Augustinian friar, Gregor Mendel was expected to pursue his groundbreaking genetics research with the same passion he reserved for his religious studies.

Combining those disciplines isn’t popular today. Villanova University, an Augustinian Roman Catholic college, is trying to change that by highlighting Mendel’s work.

The school will declare the “Year of Mendel” starting this fall and is sponsoring an exhibit on his work at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia. The effort complements an award Villanova has given since 1928, the Mendel Medal, to scientists who balance religious conviction and scientific progress.

The Catholic Church may be responsible for much of the science we have today. Off the top of my head, she’s long sponsored research into: astronomy. The Church’s support for astronomical research goes back centuries, Gallileo was working for the Pope, for example. Even today, the Vatican sponsors “The Pope Scope,” which at one point was the second largest telescope in the world, if it’s not still. The Big Bang Theory was developed by a Catholic priest in the 1920s and was rejected by secularist scientists until the 1960s. Additionally, geology was so dominated by Catholic priests that it was referred to as the Jesuit science. There’s many more examples, but I’m very tired today. And, as we see above, the Father of Genetics was a Catholic priest.

This I didn’t know:

Catholics are more likely than other Americans to believe in evolution. A survey conducted last year by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life found 58 percent of Catholics believed in evolution compared with 48 percent for the nation as a whole.

The Church has long cast a favorable look upon evolution. It’s the more fundamentalist Churches that tend to reject it. The Church and Evolutionism come into conflict only when Evolutionists try to portray evolution as a disproof of the existence of God or try to cast a solely material origin on human life and consciousness.

Influential Cardinal Christoph Schoenborn of Vienna, who has been speaking about evolution and faith, has affirmed that the Catholic Church rejects creationism. In a 2007 speech in New York, he said that “the first page of the Bible is not a cosmological treatise about the coming to be of the world in six days.” He also said that “the Catholic faith can accept” the possibility that God uses evolution as a tool. But he said science alone cannot explain the origins of the universe.

In the strictest sense, I don’t think the Church completely denounces creationism and allows her members to believe in it, but encourages them not to. (But, hey, I could be wrong.)

This sort of award, though, is beneficial to show people that science and religion need not be at odds if they both keep their eyes on their true: a search for the truth. Religion cannot speak to scientific truth, and the reverse is true as well. If both sides stick to their areas of expertise, this false and harmful war between science and religion can come to an end, and all Truth can be more fully accepted.

Sequels that didn’t match the original

The Catholic Cavemen propose a list of sequels that fail to live up to the example set by the original:

Frank Sinatra, Jr.

Desi Arnaz, Jr.
Ronald Reagan, Jr.
The New Coke
The New Europe
New Jersey [my favorite on the list]

I don’t agree with the full list, especially the commenter who suggested Star Trek II! (There’s one in every crowd, I guess.) But I can tell you that Paul Joseph Smith, Jr is far superior to the original.

(Yes, my dad reads this blog.)

Sequels that didn’t match the original

The Catholic Cavemen propose a list of sequels that fail to live up to the example set by the original:

Frank Sinatra, Jr.

Desi Arnaz, Jr.
Ronald Reagan, Jr.
The New Coke
The New Europe
New Jersey [my favorite on the list]

I don’t agree with the full list, especially the commenter who suggested Star Trek II! (There’s one in every crowd, I guess.) But I can tell you that Paul Joseph Smith, Jr is far superior to the original.

(Yes, my dad reads this blog.)

McCain’s Tax Policy Economically Sound

McCain Builds Levees for Taxes

Suggesting that McCain = Disaster is weird. The fiscal program of the presumptive Republican nominee for president is hardly disastrous. Or, to put it all in diluvial terms, Mr. McCain’s levies are like levees. They may look expensive on paper. But they’ll provide a valuable infrastructure that will shore up the American house in ways that will prove more than worth it later.

Amity Shlaes, who wrote the excellent book The Forgotten Man, which I just finished last night, argues that while McCain’s tax policies may look expensive (from the government’s point of view, anyway), they will more than pay for themselves and strengthen our nation.

Kelo v. New London house torn down for nothing

Remember that landmark Supreme Court ruling known as the Kelo decision? The court decided that eminent domain allowed the city of New London, Connecticut, to seize a private owner’s land for economic redevelopment by another private owner. The ruling was very unpopular and forced Susette Kelo to sell her home, which she never wanted to leave.

Now, three years later, Kelo’s house has been torn down and the lot where it once stood is vacant. In fact, Real Clear Markets reports that there is no new construction in the area because the city-sponsored developer has been unable to secure financing — because interest is minimal.

Kicking someone out of their house because their taxes aren’t high enough is shameful. Kicking them out their house and not even finding someone to build on it? That’s pathetic. New London should be forced to rebuild Kelo’s house and give it to him for free.

Hat Tip: Club For Growth

Obamacons?

Conservatives for Obama?

What is an “Obamacon?” The phrase surfaced in January to describe British Conservatives entranced by Barack Obama. On March 13, the American Spectator broadened the term to cover all “conservative supporters” of the Democratic presidential candidate. Their ranks, though growing, feature few famous people. But looming on the horizon are two big potential Obamacons: Colin Powell and Chuck Hagel.

Novak’s using the term Obamacons, but I’m not sure it applies. Powell has never been a conservative; he’s a Republican but not a conservative. Hagel can be called a conservative. (Lifetime ACU rating: 84.67%) A better term might be “Obamacans” or the unwieldy “Obamalicans”.

That danger was highlighted in a June New Republic article on “the rise of the Obamacons” by supply-side economist and author Bruce Bartlett, a middle-level official in the Reagan and George H.W. Bush administrations. He expressed “disgust with a Republican Party that still does not see how badly George W. Bush has misgoverned this country” — echoing his scathing 2006 book, “Impostor: How George W. Bush Bankrupted America and Betrayed the Reagan Legacy.” While Bartlett says, “I’m not ready to join the other side,” his anti-Bush furor characterizes the Obamacons.

I think we see it, but our personal liking of Bush, plus the need to support any President in war time, keeps a lot of our criticism muted. McCain’s not a savior, he’s not terribly conservative (lower lifetime ACU rating than Hagel), but he’ll prosecute the war on terror, rather than negotiate with those who wish to kill us. (“Instead of killing us, what if you just chopped off our arms?”) Unlike McCain, Obama seems to think the hippies and flower children had a point.

McCain’s not perfect and doesn’t deserve conservative support, but to a greater extent Obama doesn’t deserve to be President, so conservatives should lean McCain, while reserving the right to abandon him if he abandons us.

Quote of the Day

“But as the plan of the convention aims only at a partial union or consolidation, the State governments would clearly retain all the rights of sovereignty which they before had, and which were not, by that act, EXCLUSIVELY delegated to the United States.”

— Alexander Hamilton (Federalist No. 32, 3 January 1788)

Reference: The Federalist