Rush Limbaugh has his . . . well, here is mine. This is my record of news stories and issues that interest me. You can also find more headlines at the site where I serve as editor: The Common Voice.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Sick of it

I'm digging out of having had a pretty bad weekend. The sinus and bronchial stuff always gets me this time of year. I get sick with it and then I get sick of it.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

An Invitation

An Invitation from the Editor

I'd like to invite The Common Voice readers to the Living Gallery's "Looking Unto Jesus" that will be shown next weekend.

On a humorous note, The Greenville News printed that it was called, "Looking Into Jesus." I got a joking e-mail saying that it would appear that the BJU folks were turning into skeptics! Not so. Unto not Into. :-)

An invitation for you - hope you will consider it.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Please help me beta test

The Common Voice - PDA Version

I have been playing around with creating a PDA version of The Common Voice. Now, I have been working on it off and on for over a year. It isn't very high on my priority list. However, I decided to stick it out there and see how it would work.

I need your help.

If you have mobile device that can access the web. Try connecting to the PDA Version of the site using the standard URL for The Common Voice. If you find that your PDA browser doesn't direct you to the PDA Version, please open in your handheld - or phone - and click here. This link will take you to a page that will send me your platform and browser information so that I can add it to the list of acceptable browsers. I hope I have them all - but you never know.

Thanks for your help on this. In time I will make the PDA Version only accessible to handhelds. So, now is the time to test it out on your desktop. Oh, I'm also open to suggestions of neat things to add to the PDA Version. Just let me know.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Sunday's Sermons

As Palm Sunday and the Easter season approaches, Pastor Chuck turns our attention to the cross. The morning service focused on the work of Christ on the cross and the true meaning of the Passion. Sunday evening, he took us to the Old Testament, showed how the Day of Atonement pointed to the Cross and then pointed out what it means to us today.

The Agony of the Cross

The Day of Atonement

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Great day for Tar Heel fans

Cyclones unable to stop May, Williams

Exclamation point!

Okay, so Pait Racing got its clock cleaned. It doesn't feel so bad after watching UNC run through, around and over Iowa State. Nova is next and that is going to be a fun game!

Bad day for "Pait Racing"

Well, the finish was pretty incredible even if only Biffle gave me a decent finish (except for Waltrip - who I now wish I had not put on the bench for this race).

As it stands here is where things are in the fantasy league.

Bud_Man_Fan: 3 Wins 1 Loss (1502 pts.)
FreeAgents: 3 Wins 1 Loss (1475 pts.)
Driver 8 Fan: 2 Wins 2 Losses (1499 pts.)
Pait Racing: 2 Wins 2 Losses (1380 pts.)
Boogity Boogity Boogity: 1 Win 3 Losses (1280 pts.)
20Buck: 1 Wins 3 Losses (1241 pts.)

Me / Current Leader

Who would have thought that FreeAgents with all the rookies would end up bump drafting with Bud_Man_Fan? Congrats to 20Buck for getting a win! Remember, there are still 30+ races left.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Kiss my bracket goodbye! - NCB/NCAATOURNEY05 - NCB Bracket

Okay, so Wisconsin Wilwaukee helped blow my bracket today (though they weren't the only ones!), but I am glad they beat BC. I found myself cheering for them. I'll be cheeing for them against against Illinois as well.

Sports Stuff

First, basketball...

They're back!

Round One is over

Wow, with Kansas and Syracuse getting bumped, it added more problems to my bracket. Thankfully, all of my Final Four picks are still alive. I have Illinois, Georgia Tech, Kentucky and UNC making it to the semifinals.

The ones I have missed - and have hurt me into the second round are Texas, LSU, Pittsburgh, Creighton, Minnesota, Kansas, Syracuse and UTEP. I had LSU and Kansas going to the Elite Eight.

In the ESPN Tourament Challenge I now have 220 points and have moved up from a 46 percent to 65%.


What can I say? It is weird to see Biffle and Nemechek up in 6th and 7th for the Atlanta race and finding Gordon 25th and Waltrip way down in 37th. I think I am going to stay with my main three drivers - Gordon, Nemechek and Biffle - and sit Waltrip once again. Of course, on this type of track, being in the back at the start doesn't really mean that much.

We'll see...

Friday, March 18, 2005

The streak is broken - NCB/NCAATOURNEY05 - NCB Bracket

The streak is over. My streak of getting 3 right in my bracket picks for each set of games ended in the late evening. I finished up the day getting 2 of 4 on the last set of games.

Finished up the first day with 11 of 16 correct. I can already see two losses I'll have in the second round based on teams losing in the first round. Well, the first set of games in the first round are over. Hope I'll have a better record at the end of today.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Good job, Winthrop - Men's College Basketball - Scoreboard

Well, I am consistent. In the early primetime set of games, I finished 3 of 4. I thought Winthrop might give me another loss there for a little while. It would have been a miss I wouldn't have minded.

Tournie Update - NCB/NCAATOURNEY05 - NCB Bracket

After the second set of games: 6 of 8 - my agressive approach to upsets is not working very well. However, the Utah vs. UTEP game sure was close for a while. - NCB/NCAATOURNEY05 - NCB Bracket - NCB/NCAATOURNEY05 - NCB Bracket

Current record after first set of games: 3 of 4

March (left out due to fear of lawsuit) Is Underway! - Men's College Basketball - Scoreboard

Okay, here are my picks for the first round. I'm putting them out there before the games conclude.

Boston College
So. Illinois
Oklahoma St.
Georgia Tech
Texas Tech
Wake Forest
NC State
Mississippi St.
Michigan St.

We'll see how it goes. Go Heels!

Education does not require relativism

At Stake Is Academic Freedom

Here is an exerpt from a speech given by Mr. Stephen Thernstrom, Winthrop professor of history at Harvard University, regarding the President Summers situation at a meeting of the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Science. The following attracted my attention:
At our last meeting devoted to discussion of this issue, one speaker glossed the term "provocative," used several times by President Summers in his offending comments at the NBER. She contended that the term was in fact quite sinister because to provoke is to provoke conflict, sometimes even violent conflict, and we certainly don't want that in the university "community." I, to the contrary, think that a provocative speech in the academy is intended to provoke thought and reasoned argument.

Equally questionable, in my view, are the repeated references that faculty members have made to the Harvard "community," which are intended to suggest that President Summers had given voice to outrageous ideas violating the norms of the community. Is Harvard University really a "community" that requires ideological conformity? The First Baptist Church of Peoria is a community in that sense, with a common conception of God and how best to worship Him. Possibly Bob Jones University is a community. But no great university can long remain great if it attempts to enforce the equivalent of a religious creed on its members. What really holds the members of the Harvard "community" together is much more limited. It is simply a common commitment to pursue the truth through disciplined scholarship, and a faith that freedom of inquiry is the best means to arrive at the truth. I find the "provocative" remarks made by President Summers entirely consistent with that community norm.

I do have to admit that it is somewhat difficult to defend the academic freedom of a man who seems to have surrendered it again and again, in his ever more abject apologies for his NBER remarks. Nevertheless, President Summers is not the sole owner of the right of academic freedom, and he thus cannot surrender it for all of us.
For the most part, I agree with Mr. Thernstrom. If the "creed" of an institution of higher learning is academic freedom, then the faculty should be consistent. However, not every institution chooses to make that its creed. Are they then any less of an academic institution?

It is clearly possible to pursue truth through disciplined scholarship, inquiry into the world around us and remain true to a creed. Mr. Thernstrom indicates that TRUTH can never really be known because you must always engage in an endless search for it. The discovery of new "truths" in the world around us lead us to that TRUTH.

So, it appears, academics become a spiritual pursuit.

What Christian educators hold is that TRUTH is known. It is revealed to us in the Bible. However, there are many "truths" that we can learn in the world around us. Part of that education is seeing how those "truths" relate to revealed TRUTH.

Students at BJU may not follow the same process of education that students at Harvard receive. They do enter the world with a competitive product. Academics do not have to be based in relativism in order to prepare young people to succeed in life.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

A new feature at

The Common Voice Directory

Putting out a call for everyone's favorite Web sites (including blogs). I've just added a new feature to The Common Voice. The TCV Directory will operate with the same philosophy as the rest of the site - a site with content created by the site community. So, if I'm going to have any sites in this thing, you all have got to help me!

Add your site to the new TCV feature now. GO!

I can't channel a 35,000-year-old spirit

Cult RFK Jr. praises "cult" for its "good values," but bashes Bush as borderline fascist

I had to chuckle at this one. Fact of the matter, it wasn't okay for Bush to speak at BJU - at least not according to the national media. However, not a peep out of them for RFKJr. speaking at the Ramtha School of Enlightenment.

Also, you will find a link it this story to a book that was published some time ago that claims there was a connection between Bob Jones Sr. and the KKK. Honest Injun, we have looked and researched and can't find any connection whatsoever. Obviously, if you traveled across Alabama in the 1920s you were going to run into some Klan members - even most of the politicians at that time were members. However, BJSr. was never a member nor to our research did he "espousing Klan views."

Also, this story repeats the erroneous news that students at BJU must notify their parents should they decide to date interracially.

Monday, March 14, 2005

"God on the Quad"Alert

Religious Colleges Coming of Age

This book continues to get some attention. I wonder how well it is selling? This is an interesting review of the book from a quasi-positive view toward religious institutions.

Naomi told me that she was not saying that BJU "represented the racist and intolerant image of the South." Well, you could have fooled this reviewer :-)

I also note that BJU has a very similar number of home school students as Catholic Thomas Aquinas and Christendom. Nearly 25% of students at BJU come from home school backgrounds. The number grows every year.

See ya in the funny papers

A wry picture of America then and now

I don't know why my dad often said "See ya in the funny papers" before he left to go to work in the morning. I figure it was some sort of generational thing. Anyway, I thought of that as I read this piece that brings up Matt Diffee. Matt is a cartoonist for the New Yorker. Once again, a BJU grad that doesn't match the stereotype. I will say, the guy is funny - I think he may do stand up as well.

There is another cartoonist with BJU ties of whom folks around Greenville may be aware. Of course, he has not maintained the same appreciation for the time he spent here as Matt. Vic Lee, who pens the single panel, Pardon My Planet (appears in The Greenville News), attended BJ Academy back when his parents were on staff at the school.

The proof is in the eating

Arkansas News Bureau - Is Asa running for governor?

You would think stereotypes would die after awhile. Still, they can live on for years. But really, the proof of the pudding is in the eating. Bob Jones University is often painted as this place that is way weird. People who graduate from there can't be normal. Yet, the more you get to know your average BJU graduate, the less the stereotype holds true. The proof is in the eating.

Sunday's Sermons

Giant Faith
Continuing the Hebrews Series. Pastor Chuck remains in the "Faith Chapter", in this sermon he considers David.

Reassuring the Repentant
This sermon is a part of the II Corinthians Series that Pastor Chuck has been covering on Sunday evenings.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Almost three in the top five...

UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400

Wow, for a little while there I thought it was going to be a VERY good day. With laps winding down, Gordon was 2nd, Nemechek followed in 3rd and Biffle had dropped slightly to the 5th position. All three of my drivers were in the top five with strong cars. Then a caution came out and the dream ended... Still, I can't complain, I did end up beating Bud_Man_Fan. There are now four teams with a 2 and 1 record. Driver 8 Fan, who was smart enough to bench Junior (even though Earnhardt is his favorite driver) ended up winning his race and moving into first place with points.

Almost three in the top five...but almost doesn't do it. I still think the time will come when my guys will bring in 500 points in one race.

Driver 8 Fan: 2 Wins 1 Loss (1158 pts.)
Pait Racing: 2 Wins 1 Loss (1106 pts.)
Bud_Man_Fan: 2 Wins 1 Loss (1099 pts.)
FreeAgents: 2 Wins 1 Loss (1025 pts.)
Boogity Boogity Boogity: 1 Win 2 Losses (1050 pts.)
20Buck: 0 Wins 3 Losses (838 pts.)

Me / Current Leader

Next week - Atlanta.

Going up against Bud Man Fan

UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400

Well, at least I won't have to choose between the ACC championship game and the race. UNC lost yesterday and that means it is Duke and GTech playing for the ACC crown. Hope "Pait Racing" will have a better showing today.

It doesn't look too promising...

Today I face the current league leader. Bud-man-fan has not lost yet and leads with the most point. The drivers my team will race against today are:

Tony Stewart (7th in points starting today in 23rd)
Ryan Newman (12th in points starting today on the poll)
Mark Martin (3rd in points starting today in 19th)

So, I am going up against the poll winner as well as the winner of yesterday's Busch race. You also can't count out Stewart.

It would be nice to unseat the leader. Greg Biffle is living up to my hopes so far this year - actually he is exceeding my expectations. I just know Nemechek is going to have a break out run soon. Gordon? Well, he is Jeff Gordon.

Greg Biffle (5th in points starting today in 3rd)
Jeff Gordon (10th in points starting today in 11th)
Joe Nemechek (24th in points starting today in 12th)

The stage is set...we'll see what happens.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

The What? Factor


Some of you may know Chris Haire from MetroBeat. He handed that little gig over to James Shannon and he now is checking out the Boston scene. He ends up writing about SC because for a short period last month Boston and the Upstate collided.

I expected Chris to take the approach he did - it is the same he employed when running Greenville's alternative rag. However, I find it kind of funny that his premise was undercut by what the learned. Even the "extremist Christians" didn't give him the killer quotation. Only those who think they are the experts on something they really don't have a grasp of, fed him the lines he desired.

Bottom line is that yes, religion would play a role between two good men. It wouldn't be a defining role - more of a matter of putting someone over the edge. As I told Chris (part that did not make into the piece), I would vote for Orin Hatch anyday before I would vote for a moderate republican who was a Baptist along the lines of Clinton or Carter. Ron Romine needs to go back to school - or maybe he needs to get out of his ivory tower.

Ralph has the better analysis. I guess I'll have to start calling him professor.

Monday, March 07, 2005

Sunday's Sermons

Here are Sunday's Sermons from March 6.

Sunday Morning: Dedicated Faith

A sermon on a unique passage of scripture. Starting from Hebrews 11:32, Pastor Chuck goes back to Jephthah's rash vow. Encouraging to know that God uses our past - even a past of sin - to help us serve Him better today.

Sunday Evening: When Friends Walk Away

How should we respond when those who have professed Christ walk away from Him - and us? This is a continuation of the II Corinthians series.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Northwest Indiana News:

Lake Central helps equip Kosovo youths

It was nice to read this piece about a BJU graduate. Teresa Pyle has certainly chosen an interesting path! It is just nice to see a story that shows the type of people who are going out as graduates each year. You go girl.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Hail King Jefferson!

Jesus v. Jefferson

More on this later...

You could see this coming

The State | 03/03/2005 | Today in History

Here is one for my BJU friends. You could see this one coming when George Bush's visit to BJU showed up in the "Today in History" section last week. No, there is no relation between BJU and Pinochet.

2000: Bob Jones University, a fundamentalist Christian college in Greenville, S.C., said it was lifting its ban on interracial dating. (University president Bob Jones III made the announcement on CNN's "Larry King Live.") Former dictator Gen. Augusto Pinochet returned to Chile a free man, 16 months after he was detained in Britain on torture charges.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Too good to be true?

THM: Marvin Williams, Mama's Boy :: Marvin Williams is entirely normal. Which makes him entirely remarkable.

You don't hear many stories like this one. My bet it isn't because they don't exist. It is just that people are more interested in the sensational. Yet, in someways, this is sensational in an anti-sensational way. It will be interesting to see how Marvin grows. It will also be interesting to see how long he stays in college. Can you blame him if he goes pro? Not really, but it would be just one more example of what makes him different if he hangs around for a couple more years.

Caught in a funk

Jay Nordlinger on National Review Online

For the last several days I have been fighting a weight. Prehaps calling it a funk is a little too drastic, but it just sounds right. It seems to have come about due to me taking the time to watch a documentary produced for Channel 4 in England entitled, "Beam Me Up Jesus." An entire segment dealt with a visit of the videographers to my campus. Of course, it was then my job to host them and get them the information they sought.

They were two really nice guys to get to know. They also did the best job of any "journalists" in presenting themselves as seeking the clear view of the story. Unfortunately, they were liars. I mean, I don't say that to be sensational. They were liars. Their whole visit was a charade in order to create a mockumentary - a sacriligious one at that.

Don't think I was entirely naive. I expected it not to be a promotional piece. However, I did not expect it to be so purposefully edited to create their little joke. And people wonder why BJU is hesitant to open to "journalists" - we have good reason.

Then today I pick up the paper and read The Greenville News' Ron Barnett's piece "Religious icon stirs emotions." Here again I see a piece written with the "journalist" using his arrangement of interviews and editing of conversations to make a point - not to inform, but to advance one side of the issue.

Then I read the following on NRO by Jay Nordlinger. At least I don't feel alone:
In The New Yorker, I spotted the snottiest little piece to come down the pike since . . . the last time I read The New Yorker. It is about some West Point cadets, who were taken to the Metropolitan Opera to see Turandot. Civilize 'em, you know - make 'em less beastly, less embarrassing to their fellow Americans who work for or read The New Yorker.

(By the way, when you say "Turandot," go ahead and pronounce the final "t." Many don't, in the mistaken belief that French is in order. Turandot is an Italian opera about a Chinese princess. Pronounce the "t" - if you can stand to be corrected incorrectly. I would bet most of the tea in Turandot's China that the author of this snotty little article pronounces the name incorrectly.)

Let me cite the last line of the article: "Ernest Lee [a cadet], descending to the coat check, declared his intention to develop his newfound taste for Puccini at the first opportunity. 'I want to get the soundtrack,' he said."

Ha, ha, ha - dumb soldier said "soundtrack," as though the opera were a movie. Journalists have extraordinary power, for good or ill. I think about this a lot. By some artful arranging of sentences and so on, you can make anyone - even an Einstein - look stupid. I hope I don't do it (too often).
Well, with all of this in mind, I plan to spend my day with Tony Walker, a reporter with the Australian Financial Review. I can't help but wonder what it real motive might be... I don't like to be cynical... Maybe it is just the funk.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Can anyone take the Village Voice seriously?

Condi's Growing Fan Club

This story came up on my radar because of its mention of Bob Jones University.* However, the whole piece makes me wonder why anyone would take The Village Voice seriously. I don't think I have ever read anything there that had the facts straight.

This is called a news story? The story leads: "Nobody wants another Bush, certainly not Jeb with his smuggler wife and delinquent children." It picks up later: "Why not the best? Dick Cheney. He's already running the country and he's the most experienced, best all-around campaigner of the lot..."

Jab, jab, sigh. It makes for interesting opinion, but news?

* "People love John McCain, but who wants to see him tortured one more time by the right-wing Christian wackos at Bob Jones University?"