Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 210

On Politics
When listening to the party-spin about the recently released Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report, it’s easy to get the impression that there were two reports … not one.

Lyle Denniston, a respected writer about the US Supreme Court, provides this interesting piece about executive orders.

Lee Hamilton, the respected former Congressman from southeastern Indiana, wrote this interesting op-ed regarding Congress and budgets.

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion
Super Bowl packs up, leaves town in 40-wagon train
Man on vacation suddenly realizes no one feeding his hostages
New chip snack evades digestive system, burrows straight to heart
Area woman said “Sorry” 118 times yesterday
Nation terrified after millions lose consciousness for 8 hours last night

Interesting Reads
Columnist David Brooks on what machines cannot do
Shapes and names
How to talk about evolution with family
The first battle of Isonzo in WW I
Darwin’s Pigeons slideshow
Physics of freezing rain
Interesting graph of US labor force demographics

On Potpourri
Bad News: Punxsutawney Phil prognosticates 6 more weeks of winter.

Good News: Buckeye Chuck says spring is around the corner.

TBD News: Who is right? So far, and with the 7-day forecast, it’s Phil.

A tip of the cap to Jay Leno, who after 4,600 shows and almost 44,000 jokes, leaves the Tonight Show. Interesting, his number one joke target (by far) is Bill Clinton.

Last week I wrote the following: The anticipated debate between science advocate Bill Nye and Answers in Genesis President Ken Ham is approaching, and no doubt will deliver a narrow view, thus providing a false choice. Several days later, the Cincinnati Enquirer supported my point with the following headline on its Sunday front page: Bible! Science! Who Will Win? : It’s creationism vs. evolution as Answers in Genesis founder Ken Ham debates Bill Nye, TV’s Science Guy.

I did not watch the debate, but I trust this review from the team at BioLogos.

Given any unforeseen circumstances, the opening act of Life: The Musical will be next Thursday Wednesday at 9:30 pm (Eastern US). I will announce the theme on Monday.

It’s a handbell Sunday for us. The director moved me to the biggest bells for this tune, which are quite heavy. Because I didn’t find a good video of this song, enjoy this quality recording.

Thanks to everyone who visits here knowing my time for reciprocating is currently very limited.

Here are your weekend celebrations

  • (Fri) Wear Red Day, Bubblegum Day, Wave All Your Fingers at Your Neighbor Day, Ballet Day, Girl Scout Cookie Day, Cordova Ice Worm Day, Pinocchio Day, Send a Card to a Friend Day
  • (Sat) Laugh and Get Rich Day, Opera Day, Fly a Kite Day
  • (Sun) Man Day, Autism Day, Read in the Bathtub Day, Stop Bullying Day, Toothache Day, Hershey Chocolate Day

Here’s another throwback from the 80s to lead us into the weekend. It’s not about the weather, but the title is fitting for many of us in the central and eastern US. Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

On Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 93


  • Another special weekend edition tomorrow – thus I hope you return.
  • A Frank Angle is on FaceBook.

On Political Shorts
“High five” to Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) for calling on Donald Trump for deciding to promote birther issues over issues of substance. Mr. Trump’s actions have earned him the tile, Donald the Ronald McDonald.

I’ll give Tim Pawlenty credit – I like the music in his campaign videos.

My governor, John Kasich, just endorsed Haley Barbour for the GOP presidential nomination. Crank up the Pointer Sisters I’m so Excited … NOT.

As the spin continues to determine the political losers and winners in last week’s possible government shutdown, I continue to believe two things: our politicians went into it as losers, and come out of it as losers. … plus tougher, uglier fights are on the horizon.

Have you noticed how quiet Sarah Palin has been lately? I hope it stays that way.

I’m not sure which was worse: Sen. Jon Kyl’s highly inaccurate quote about Planned Parenthoods budget or his office’s pathetic after-the-fact explanation. Nonetheless, Stephen Colbert’s take is priceless and worth your time. Thanks Melissa.

On Short Shorts
PC Reigns as Seattle School Renames “Easter Eggs”

I’m currently reading The Evolution-Creation Struggle by Michael Ruse. Very interesting, especially for those who believe that history has much to tell.

The University of Cincinnati is suing the owner of the Bearcat Café for trademark infringement. Interestingly, the business (though different owners) has been there for 50 years. Surely, UC attorneys have a better way to invest their time and talent.

As the NFL faces labor strife, here’s an interesting perspective from a NFL player’s wife.

Roger Ebert provides this wonderful post to explain the effect the Hubble telescope has on him and his beliefs.

On Quiet Heroes
Many heroes are quiet, non-attention seekers who believe in simply doing what should be done. This report by NBC’s News is a wonderful tribute to such a person. Thanks Padre Steve for this.

On Evolution and Church

Charles Darwin’s 200th birthday (this past February) sparked many interesting posts; and I read many. The event also served as the foundation for polls from both Gallup and the Pew Research Center – and I read both. Collectively, I initiated expansion of my own knowledge base by focusing on three books:

  • Saving Darwin: How to be a Christian and Believe in Evolution (Karl Giberson)
  • Finding Darwin’s God: A Scientist’s Search for Common Ground between God and Evolution (Kenneth Miller)
  • Storms over Genesis: Biblical Battleground in America’s Wars of Religion (William Jennings)

Angle Point 1
The primary sources of information for people are schools and churches. In terms of schools, my experiences lead me to believe that science teachers can be divided into groups regarding evolution: Those avoiding it, those teaching it poorly, and those teaching it well. My gut tells me that the latter group is the smallest.

Angle Point 2
I’m convinced that many don’t know how science works; most may even be most.

Angle Point 3
When it comes to churches, there’s no doubt that the congregations against evolution actively educate their members. Meanwhile, congregations who don’t have issues with evolution at the organizational level do NOT educate their flock about the relationship between religion and science, thus perpetuating misinformation held by the public. Christian denominations in this group include mainline Protestants, Anglicans, and Roman Catholics. Interestingly Jews, moderate Muslims, Unitarians, and Buddhists are also supportive of evolution, but I’m unfamiliar with how they address this issue with their members.

Angle Point 4
Yes, some evolutionists are atheists, but not all. Yes, some evolutionists use evolution to say God doesn’t exist, but that’s a small number. There is more support in the religious community that people realize and the fundamentalists don’t speak for all Christians, thus churches should educate their members.

My Goal & Action Plan
At this point, I am concentrating my efforts at the congregation level in the church I attend. I’ve already had Round 1 discussions with one of our pastors about the importance of teaching a course on science and religion because members need to know that evolution is ok and here’s why. I have been promised additional discussion with others. After all, if I can move one domino, maybe others will fall.

The Bottom Line
As science has learned so much since Darwin and Alfred Wallace announced their findings, religious scholars continue to study and learn about the theological perspective. Although the conservative and fundamental Christians selectively point to Genesis to justify their means, I’m still amazed that they give God so little credit.