Monthly archive September, 2008

So That's What She Meant

Dan Kennedy’s Media Nation blog points us to two helpful Palin perspectives, including a Pentecostal scholar of Pentecostalism who says — contrary to Steve Waldman’s point, below, and my own read of Palin’s word — that it’s fair to interpret Palin’s statements about Iraq as referencing holy war.

Idol Music

Sharlet: An essay of mine from last year's Oxford American Southern Music Annual, "The People's Singer," made the cut for Da Capo Best Music Writing 2008, to be released in the beginning of October. My piece, about the forgotten folk singer Lee Hays -- he wrote the words to "If I Had a Hammer" and...

Waldman's World

Beliefnet founder Steve Waldman‘s list of “what’s scary, what’s not scary” about Sarah Palin’s religion is a useful, if slightly misleading, tool for journalists eager to find an entry point for writing about the trinity of church, state, and Palin. Useful: Waldman pays attention to language, pointing out that Palin didn’t declare the Iraq War...

Modified Christianity

A left critic on what secular humanists don't get about Christianity in America. By Robert Christgau. (Excerpted from Truthdig.com)

This Joke is Funny Because…

Sharlet: Fred Clarkson of the anti-religious right site Talk2Action told me a couple of days ago that this story would be coming today. Fred thinks the story is huge; I’m skeptical. What’s the story? Well, that’s the problem. It’s complicated. You see, under 1954 amendment to the tax codes, tax exempt organizations are not allowed...

A New New Atheist

The "New Atheists," as writers such as Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, and Christopher Hitchens are known, are joined by a heavyweight of leftist philosophy and practice...

Oldest Magazine on the Continent Likes My Book!

Sharlet: The oldest continuously published magazine in North America — and the second oldest in the English-speaking world — likes The Family. Says the United Church Observer: “From the early evangelical efforts of Jonathan Edwards in the 18th century, through the ministry of the Family’s founder, Abraham Vereide, in Seattle starting in the 1930s, to today’s efforts...

Obama's Dot, Dot, Dot

“As a Christian,” Obama told George Stephanopolous today, “I have a lot of humility about understanding when does the soul enter into …” The dot, dot, dot — Obama’s, not ours — refers to either an embryo, a fetus, or a baby. Obama dodged the specifics, even as he sought to reassure abortion foes angered by...

Sarah Palin's Hard Rain

Leftist and liberal bloggers have been raising questions about possible connections between Sarah Palin's churches and a fundamentalist charismatic movement known as Third Wave and Latter Rain. The best of these investigations comes from Bruce Wilson...

My Loveless Universe

How "compassionate conservative" Marvin Olasky uncovered my secret yearnings...

Blood Runs Thick

Sharlet: Little did I know that my recent book, The Family, was a sort of sequel to Upton Sinclair's Oil!, recently made into the movie There Will Be Blood. At least, that's how Stephen Crittendon, host of Australian national radio's "Religion Report" sees it...