Friday, March 20

Random


food chartBig cuts in postal service coming to the US. The volume of stamped mail is back down to 1964 levels. But they are trying to maintain staff and facilities for pre-Internet days. We may just have to adjust our expectations a bit. ~ link

No whining allowed. The US is better off than the rest of the world when it comes to food. "Americans spend only 5.7% (of household income) on food consumed at home in 2007, the lowest percent in the world," says Professor Mark Perry. Of course, we do tend to eat out a lot. But that says a lot about our level of affluence (even in a slow economy). ~ link

Great line from David Brooks -- writing about the US's "cosmic myopia," in the midst of the collapsing world financial system --
The president of the United States has decided to address this crisis while simultaneously tackling the four most complicated problems facing the nation: health care, energy, immigration and education. Why he has not also decided to spend his evenings mastering quantum mechanics and discovering the origins of consciousness is beyond me.
It's true. The president does seem largely disconnected from reality at times but we know that most of what a president accomplishes gets started in his first year of office. If he doesn't launch into these things now the opportunities for success diminish with time in office. His clock is ticking. ~ link

Mortgaging church property is a theological issue. If the space is sacred because it is set-apart for sacred purposes then to give a secular bank an interest in the property is theologically inconsistent. However, if buildings are seen more as mission tools, not particularly sacred in themselves, then there is more openness to outside mortgages. So muses Valerie Munson, expert on church property law at the University of St Thomas School of Law in Minneapolis. Cathy Lynn Grossman in her USA Today column is asking if these differences are affecting church foreclosure rates. ~ link

Philip Jenkins writes on "The Philippine diaspora" ~ link

Foreign aid is smothering Africa to death -- creating more problems than it is solving. ~ link

WSJ article on church planting in America ~ link

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