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Wednesday, October 19, 2016 6:00 PM
“Politics are many things to many people,” writes William Peart in his Capitoliazations column in the Jackson Daily News in 1963, “To some, they’re fully serious – a way of life, to phrase it tiredly. To others, they’re a part time circus – intriguing, of course, but comical, too.”
  • DUNCAN/Jesus: the dividing line
    There are at least three parts to this passage. First, in verses 49 and 50, and especially in verse 50, Jesus makes a powerful declaration. He’ll follow it up in verses 51 to 53 with a penetrating question. Then, in verses 54 to 59, He turns to the multitudes and gives them an admonition, warning them because they lack spiritual discernment. 
  • BROOKS/The beauty of big books
    Not long ago, an astonishing book landed on my desk. It’s called “Confessions of a Born-Again Pagan” and it weighs in at an impressive 1,076 pages. The author is Anthony Kronman, a former dean of the Yale Law School.

    In an age of academic specialization, this is an epically ambitious book. In an age when intellectuals have lost their sense of high calling, this is an intellectual adventure story based on the notion that ideas drive history, and that to dedicate yourself to them is to live a bigger, more intense life.
  • LOWRY/Evangelicals without standards
    Lanny Davis must be dizzy from the deja vu.

    Davis was a stalwart defender of Bill Clinton during the scandals of the 1990s. Little did he know that the excuses and rationalizations made for Clinton then would be repurposed by some of Clinton’s harshest and most moralistic critics for a Republican presidential contender.
  • SOMIN/Mobility and political freedom

    Americans will soon get a chance to vote at the ballot box. But too little attention has been paid to their declining opportunities to vote with their feet. If we want to expand freedom and opportunity for the poorest among us, we must get moving on making it easier for them to move. Sadly, the issue has been almost completely ignored by both major parties.
  • GETTING THE MESSAGE/2nd Timothy 3:1-5
    In this passage Paul laments the plague of nominal Christianity. Nominal means in name only, those who are in the church and profess to belong to Christ, but do not really belong. Paul summarizes the condition in the last of the passage: “Having a form of godliness but denying its power.” By power, Paul means the power to live a humble, godly life.
  • EDITORIALS/Home inspection racket
    Madison County spent nearly $225,000 last year on contract building inspectors who work part-time and on their schedule.

    In comparison, Madison and Ridgeland have full-time inspectors for a fraction of the cost.
  • PERRY/Know your vote
    If you want to vote in this year’s election but you haven’t registered to vote in Mississippi, it is too late. The deadline passed Saturday. If you are one of the 1,864,733* active, registered Mississippi voters – and particularly one of the more than 8,200 new active, registered voters since this time last year - here are a few things to know. (*Circuit clerks continue to tally new registers who met the deadline; this number will increase.)
  • LOWRY/The agony of the Republicans
    Less than a month before the election, the Republican speaker of the House says he won’t defend or campaign with his party’s presidential nominee. The nominee has responded by slamming the speaker on Twitter, and his campaign manager is accusing some (unnamed) elected Republicans of sexual harassment against her.
  • BROOKS/Trump’s sad, lonely life
    The point of town hall debates is that regular voters get to ask questions. In every town hall I’ve seen, the candidate turns to the voter, listens attentively and directs the answer at least partially back to that person.

    The candidates do that because it’s polite, because it looks good to be seen taking others seriously and because most of us instinctively want to make some connection with the people we are talking to.
  • BROOKS/Trump, taxes, citizenship
    You can be a taxpayer or you can be a citizen. If you’re a taxpayer your role in the country is defined by your economic and legal status. Your primary identity is individual. You’re perfectly within your rights to do everything you legally can to look after your self-interest.
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