“Good” Anger and “Bad” Anger: Lessons from the Enneagram

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Anger: an emotion that often drives people to walk into a school, movie theater, place of business or nightclub, pull a trigger and kill innocents. Anger: an emotion linked negatively in Bible verses with sin, unrighteousness, the devil, slander and malice. Anger: an emotion to be avoided, tamed, tamped down. What about our own anger, […]

It’s Well Past Time: The Imperative Need to Address Gun Violence

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Orlando, June 12, 2016… As I was preparing this blog post, we experienced the deadliest mass shooting in US history. Once again, we mourn, try to make sense of the senseless, debate and, hopefully, come together in solidarity. But we must face facts: violence in the US, especially violence involving firearms, is a serious problem, […]

The Ethical Imperative for Making America Better: Learn from our Peer Nations

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For physicians, the Hippocratic Oath forms the ethical basis of their practice. Our leaders in Congress take a solemn vow to defend the Constitution of the United States.  Law enforcement officials make promises to “serve and protect.” Whether these promises are actually kept or not, the people making them are, in effect, undertaking an ethical imperative […]

Good Government versus Bad Government: Don’t Throw the Baby out with the Bath Water

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We Americans have a long history of ambivalence toward government at all levels. We have recently witnessed the stand-off in the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon between authorities and anti-government protesters. Republican presidential candidates cry out for abolition of government agencies – and have been doing so for decades (recall Ronald Reagan’s frequent rallying […]

The American Workplace 5: Wages, Savings and Debt

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How is your dollar doing? A look at some statistics about wages, savings and debt in the US is instructive. If you are not doing terribly well financially, you are not alone – and there are ways out of our collective problems, if we are willing to look seriously at ideas from other nations and […]

The American Workplace 4: Work and Overwork

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Work – overwork – the dignity of work. In this fourth installment of my series on the American workplace, I want to challenge the pervasive American notion that working excessively is a virtue and that not working practically around the clock means that one is a “slacker.” I also want to put the issue into […]

The American Workplace 1: At-will Employment Continued

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Over the next few weeks, I will be addressing issues having to do with the American workplace. Because work is such a vital part of most Americans’ lives, and because Americans spend so much of their time in the workplace, it is an issue of social justice: how people are treated, and how workplace practices, […]

Retirement Challenges and the Common Good

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Baby-boomers are at or nearing retirement. It is becoming a sad fact that many of us will not be able to retire when we originally planned to, nor will we be able to retire comfortably, despite having worked for 40 or more years, saving as much as we could, following the rules, and trying not […]

Initial Thoughts on the Common Good

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In this blog, I will be referring frequently to the common good. While there are political, economic and philosophical ways of discussing this concept, I would like to keep it simple and straightforward. I will also be placing it in a theological context, since that is my training – and also since much of our […]