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W. T. Louderback "Tom Louderback" (Louisville, Kentucky)
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Rich Christians In An Age of Hunger
Rich Christians In An Age of Hunger
by Ronald Sider
Edition: Paperback
34 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Our Continuous Improvement, Jan. 14 2004
It's about our salvation! I would say this is the basic message of Rich Christians in a Age of Hunger. Sider makes it loud and clear that these two facts are undeniable and inescapalbe. First, God is not passive about economic justice. Just read the 64 passages in The Bible about the liberation of the poor and oppressed and God's love of the poor and oppressed including Matthew 25:40. In addition, poverty and its horrible effects are wide spread in our world today.
Up to now, most of us have been denying the challenges of poverty to avoid feelings of guilt. What we need to do today is remind everyone that economic justice is about compassion not guilt. We can practice our compassion by doing our best to be more generous everyday. In the business world, this is known as "continuous improvement."
Some good companions to this book are Opting For The Poor by P.J. Henriot S.J, How Much Is Enough? by Arthur Simon, and Unexpected News by Robt. M. Brown. These great books inspired me to compile a social ministry manual which is online and free at [...] .

Out of Control: The New Biology of Machines, Social Systems, and the Economic World
Out of Control: The New Biology of Machines, Social Systems, and the Economic World
by Kevin Kelly
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 17.24
61 used & new from CDN$ 1.94

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nature Creates New Things Out of Nothing Every Day, June 3 2003
This book must have been as much fun for Kevin Kelly to write as it is to read. It's a little long but very easy to understand. It'll make you think and you are sure to enjoy thinking about the ideas and examples in here.
A more correct title might be "Out of Centralized Control." Kelly's point is that Nature is not a command and control monolith, but instead, a network of relatives, friends, neighbors, and sometimes predators. Nature does not control the Universe so much as it encourages cooperation within the Universe. The examples Kelly gives in the first few pages set the tone of the rest of the book. One is the flock of geese, which somehow knows its migration path from hemisphere to hemisphere even though none of the geese in the flock have ever flown it before.
As Kelly shows us, there are plenty of surprises in Nature. Uncertainty is built in. That's life ! Some readers might find it hard to believe that Nature is not particularly concerned about efficiency. It doesn't mind duplication, redundancy, and a little waste. It fact, it wants these things because they lead us to flexibility. Kelly's point in all this seems to be that Nature does not play by the numbers.
It might be even harder for some readers to believe, at first, that Nature creates new things out of nothing every day. But, Kelly will win you over on that point and many more. His "Nine Laws of God" which sum up the book in the last chapter made me want to read it a second time.
One nice companion to this book would be "Morphic Resonance and the The Presence of the Past: The Habits of Nature" by Ruppert Sheldrake. That book presents a theory that is considered radical by many, yet the critics usually concede that it's well reasoned and fills many of the gaps in our knowledge of Nature.
If you'd like to think about the theological implications of Kelly's ideas, try a few books about process theology, particularly these: "A Basic Introduction to Process Theology" by Robert Mesle, "What is Process Theology?" by Robert Mellert, and "Ominipotence and Other Theological Mistakes" by Charles Hartshorne.

Democracy and the Problem of Free Speech
Democracy and the Problem of Free Speech
27 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars If Money is Speech, Speech is Not Free, Oct. 8 2001
Cass Sunstein begins with a thesis that is very simple. I'd explain it like this. "Speech is not free if ordinary citizens do not possess it." Then, he elaborates on this fundamental idea in great detail.
The problem is that our courts over many years have defined speech as something similar to a market commodity. Now, it's equated with access to TV and radio, which is purchased at a very high price. Some politicians like to say "money is speech" in this electronic age. The courts are more circumspect, of course, but they seldom view speech in terms of the actual results.
Sunstein believes that the primary result desired by James Madison, "the father of our US Constitution," is an inspired, well-informed, citizenry educated by the free flow of ideas. So, he terms this view of free speech the "Madisonian Ideal."
Madison's view of freedom, and free speech, was always balanced with his ideas about Democracy, Sunstein says. Under Democracy, we expect freedom, equality, and justice, all three together. This expectation comes from the second paragraph of our Declaration of Independence and was reinforced by those last few, and very inspiring, lines of Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. In terms of modern consumerism, we'd call it a package deal.
But, the court decisions in many free speech cases promise only freedom. There is not enough thought given to equality and justice. Thus, the longterm survival of free speech is threatened by court interpretations of freedom that are too narrow and do not consider the actual results. One of the worst of those results is the obvious frustration of serious discussion of the public issues by the influence of money.
To be honest, this book is not very easy to read. Sunstein's style of writing is technical and legal. It's well worth the effort, though, if you care either way about the issue of campaign finance reform. It's a must-read in that case.
Two nice companions to this book would be "Money and Politics: Financing Our Elections Democratically," by David Donnelly and others, and "If Buckley Fell: A First Amendment Blueprint for Regulating Money in Politics" by Joshua Rosenkranz and others.

Morale
Morale
by John W Gardner
Edition: Paperback
18 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Enthusiasm, Oct. 1 2001
This review is from: Morale (Paperback)
The most inspiring quote I've ever read on the subject of politics comes out of this book. It goes like this: "The longer I live, the more I respect enthusiasm. There is no perfection of technique that will substitute for the lift of spirit that enthusiasm produces. Some people keep their zest until the day they die. They keep their sense of curiosity. They reach out. They enjoy. They risk failure. They may even allow themselves some moderately cheerful expectations for the time ahead. Such expectations may be greeted with skepticism in the current climate, but we should welcome the buoyance from which they spring. Otherwise, in our world weary wisdom, we shall be unresponsive to the challenges that keep societies alive and moving." This little book is packed full of good reasons why we ought to care about what is going on around us. It will make a believer out of you!

Granny D: Walking Across America in My Ninetieth Year
Granny D: Walking Across America in My Ninetieth Year
by Doris Haddock
Edition: Hardcover
33 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars A Good Imaginary Hat, July 17 2001
Granny D's book is not about politics but it is about citizenship, patriotism, and real life. She sets the tone at the very beginning of the book and sticks with it.
"If you are not much interested in campaign finance reform -- the reason for my protest walk -- do not worry: I will not pester you too much about it as we journey together between these covers. You will not need imaginary earplugs I hope, just a good imaginary good hat."
Plainly, Granny D intends to become everyone's grandma during her walk. And, she does it. You'll just love her!

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