Monthly Archives: June 2015

MUSIC MONDAY Cole Porter’s songs “De-Lovely” and “Let’s misbehave”

Cole Porter’s songs “De-Lovely” and “Let’s misbehave”

 

‘At Long Last Love’: Let’s Misbehave/De-Lovely

Uploaded on Apr 1, 2009

Burt Reynolds and Cybil Shepherd give an extraordinarily charming performance of Cole Porter’s songs in Peter Bogdanovich’s absolutely wonderful tribute to the golden age of film musicals, ‘At Long Last Love’.

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De-Lovely

 

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De-Lovely
De-LovelyPoster.jpg

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Irwin Winkler
Produced by Simon Channing Williams
Written by Jay Cocks
Starring Kevin Kline
Ashley Judd
Jonathan Pryce
Kevin McNally
Sandra Nelson
Allan Corduner
Peter Polycarpou
Music by Cole Porter
Cinematography Tony Pierce-Roberts
Editing by Julie Monroe
Studio Winkler Films
Distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date(s)
  • July 2, 2004
Running time 125 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $20 million
Box office $18,396,382

 

De-Lovely is a 2004 musical biopic directed by Irwin Winkler. The screenplay by Jay Cocks is based on the life and career of Cole Porter, from his first meeting with Linda Lee Thomas until his death. It is the second biopic about the composer, following Night and Day.

 

 

Plot

 

As he is about to die, Porter’s life flashes before him in the form of a musical production staged by the archangel Gabriel in the Indiana theater where the composer first performed on stage. From the start, Linda is aware of Cole’s gay feelings, but her love for and devotion to him are strong enough for her to overlook his romantic flings outside their marriage. After a while, she can no longer ignore the innuendos in his songs and their relationship grows strained. Cole is photographed in an amorous embrace with another man in the rest room of a gay nightclub, and both he and Linda are blackmailed into paying a heavy settlement to suppress publication of the pictures. When he shrugs off the blackmail, she finally goes to Paris, leaving him bereft. Not until he is injured in a horseback riding accident that seriously cripples him does she return to his side, willing to forgive but still finding it difficult to cope with his extramarital affairs. Eventually she is diagnosed with emphysema, and as she prepares herself and her husband for her impending death, she attempts to forge a relationship between him and her interior decorator so he’ll have a companion following her death, which deeply affects him. The eventual amputation of his right leg adds to his deep depression, affecting his creative output. Porter becomes increasingly reclusive, as well as becoming more dependent on alcohol.[1][2]

 

Cast

 

 

Production

 

Although Porter was a passable singer at best, director Irwin Winkler cast Kevin Kline, winner of two Tony Awards and two Drama Desk Awards for his musical performances on Broadway, as the composer. He stayed in character by limiting his vocal range. Most of his singing was recorded live on the set, and the actor played the piano himself in the scenes where Porter plays.

 

According to Winkler’s commentary on the DVD release of the film, he had considered numerous actresses for the role of Linda when Ashley Judd‘s agent advised him she was interested in the part. Winkler was certain her salary demand would exceed that allowed by the budget, but the actress was so anxious to portray Linda she was willing to lower her usual asking price. Judd is twenty years younger than Kline, although the composer’s wife was eight years older than he.

 

Filming locations included Chiswick House and Luton Hoo.

 

The film premiered at the 2004 Cannes Film Festival.[3] It was shown at the CineVegas International Film Festival, the Sydney Film Festival, and the San Francisco International Lesbian and Gay Film Festival before going into limited release in the US.

 

Soundtrack

 

A soundtrack album of music from the film was released on June 15, 2004.

 

Track Listing (Europe)

 

  1. It’s De-Lovely” performed by Robbie Williams
  2. Let’s Do It (Let’s Fall In Love)” performed by Alanis Morissette
  3. Begin the Beguine” performed by Sheryl Crow
  4. Let’s Misbehave” performed by Elvis Costello
  5. Be a Clown” performed by Kevin Kline, Peter Polycarpou, and Chorus
  6. Night and Day” performed by John Barrowman
  7. Easy to Love” performed by Kevin Kline (American release omits this track)
  8. True Love” by Ashley Judd and Tayler Hamilton
  9. What is This Thing Called Love?” performed by Lemar
  10. I Love You” performed by Mick Hucknall
  11. Just One of Those Things” performed by Diana Krall
  12. Anything Goes” performed by Caroline O’Connor
  13. “Experiment” performed by Kevin Kline
  14. Love for Sale” performed by Vivian Green
  15. So in Love” performed by Lara Fabian and Mario Frangoulis
  16. Ev’ry Time We Say Goodbye” performed by Natalie Cole
  17. “Blow, Gabriel, Blow” performed by Jonathan Pryce, Kevin Kline, Cast, and Chorus
  18. In the Still of the Night” performed by Kevin Kline and Ashley Judd
  19. You’re the Top” performed by Cole Porter

 

Reception

 

The film grossed $13,337,299 in the US and $5,059,083 in other markets for a total worldwide box office of $18,396,382.[4]

 

Critically, the film had a mixed reception. It garnered a score of 53 from Metacritic[5] and a 48% rating from review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes.[6] Roger Ebert gave the film 3.5 out of a possible four stars. He wrote, for his review in the Chicago Sun-Times, that De-Lovely “…brings […] a worldly sophistication that is rare in the movies”.[7]

 

Larry King said “Far and away the best musical biography ever made.”

 

In his review in The New York Times, Stephen Holden called the film “lethally inert” and “lifeless and drained of genuine joie de vivre” and added, “It didn’t have to be like this. In their highly stylized ways, All That Jazz (Bob Fosse‘s morbidly manic screen autobiography), Ken Russell‘s surreal portraits of composers or any of Federico Fellini‘s libidinous self-explorations have delved deeply into the muck of artistic creativity. Sadly, the daring and imagination required to go below the surface are nowhere to be found in De-Lovely.”[8]

 

Ruthe Stein of the San Francisco Chronicle said, “The movie never gels – despite Kline’s nuanced performance, the stars’ exquisite period clothes designed by Armani, and, of course, Porter’s great songs. Director Irwin Winkler’s highly stylized technique is difficult to connect with emotionally. His film also suffers from shockingly sloppy editing for a studio production. If nothing else, the composer . . . deserves a movie that has rhythm. But De- Lovely lurches along like a car with a missing spark plug.”[9]

 

In Rolling Stone, Peter Travers rated the film three out of a possible four stars and commented, “In voice, manner, patrician charm and private torment, Kevin Kline is perfection as legendary composer Cole Porter . . . At its best, De-Lovely evokes a time, a place and a sound with stylish wit and sophistication.”[10]

 

Steve Persall of the St. Petersburg Times graded the film C- and observed, “The movie is actually an ugly compilation of clashing cinematic styles occasionally salvaged by musical numbers that essentially are part of the problem. You can’t make a good movie about a 1930s composer using a 1970s film conceit while hiring 21st century recording artists to perform Porter’s classic songs. A tribute CD, maybe, but not a movie . . . [it] plays like a cabaret review rather than a motion picture, a sublime collection of songs linked by scripted banter barely scratching the surface of its subject. Not delightful, not delicious, just disappointing.”[11]

 

Awards and nominations

 

 

See also

 

 

References

 

 

External links

 

 

Let’s Misbehave

 

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“Let’s Misbehave” is a song written by Cole Porter in 1927, originally intended for the female lead of his first major production, Paris. Although it was discarded before the Broadway opening in favor of Let’s Do It, Let’s Fall in Love, the star of the Broadway production, Irene Bordoni, did a phonograph recording of it which was labelled as from the production of Paris. It was included perhaps most famously in the 1962 revival of Anything Goes. It was a notable hit for Irving Aaronson and his Commanders.

 

This version was used in two Woody Allen films: at the opening and close of the 1972 film Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex* (*But Were Afraid to Ask), and at the close of the 1994 film Bullets Over Broadway. The song is featured in a prominent dance sequence by Christopher Walken in the Steve Martin musical Pennies From Heaven (1981).

 

It is used in the closing credits of Johnny Dangerously (1984), and sung by Elvis Costello in the 2004 movie De-Lovely.

 

The song is featured (sung by Cybill Shepherd) in the 1975 film At Long Last Love and in the 2008 film Easy Virtue, and the title is one of the film’s taglines.

 

Cole Porter‘s original version was also featured on The Simpsons Season 15, Episode 15, entitled “Co-Dependent’s Day“.

 

Most recently, a 1928 recording of the song by Irving Aaronson and his Commanders appeared in the 2013 film The Great Gatsby.

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“Schaeffer Sunday” The Affordable Health Care Act and Euthanasia

How Should We then Live Episode 7 small (Age of Nonreason)

#02 How Should We Then Live? (Promo Clip) Dr. Francis Schaeffer

The clip above is from episode 9 THE AGE OF PERSONAL PEACE AND AFFLUENCE

10 Worldview and Truth

In above clip Schaeffer quotes Paul’s speech in Greece from Romans 1 (from Episode FINAL CHOICES)

Two Minute Warning: How Then Should We Live?: Francis Schaeffer at 100

A Christian Manifesto Francis Schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer “BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY” Whatever…HTTHR

A very good article.

The Affordable Health Care Act and Euthanasia

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Well, the title alone probably tells you what I’m thinking in this article, but I’ll embellish anyways. I sense the confluence of several strong forces coming together that will significantly challenge how Christians manage their businesses in the coming years. There will be significant tradeoff choices that will reveal who we are as individuals and what we really value. The Affordable Health Care Act – more commonly known as ObamaCare – is a symptom of a larger problem in our culture, but will be the vehicle through which Christian business owners may be forced to make difficult choices.

In this post, I’ll discuss a long-forgotten work by Francis Schaeffer and C. Everett Koop, then connect their thinking and predictions to what is probably (in my estimation) in Obamacare and then end with an outline of the key challenges that those of us who are disciples of Jesus Christ will likely face. In all honesty, I hope that I’m wrong in the predictive points in this post. But I posit this information as a way for our society to look at ourselves in the mirror and ask if this is what we seriously want our country to be like.

In the revised copy of Schaeffer’s book, Whatever Happened to the Human Race, Koop joins Schaeffer in discussing critical beliefs in America in the early 80′s. Nearly 30 years later, we are dangerously close to reaping the fruits of seeds sown back in the 60′s and 70′s. I’ll quote at length from several sections of their book:

The human life issues will define our own time. For far from being only single issues, abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia strike at the heart of our most basic beliefs about God and man. The way in which we ultimately decide them will determine the future for all of us. As Mother Teresa has said, “If a mother can kill her own children, then what can be next?” Indeed, what can be next for all of us? If we can take one life because it does not measure up to our standards of perfection, what is to stop us from taking any life-simply for our own convenience? Abortion and infanticide are only the beginning steps on a slippery slope that will lead to death for all but the planned and perfect members of our society.

Francis A. Schaeffer;C. Everett Koop. Whatever Happened to the Human Race? (Revised Edition) (Kindle Locations 40-45). Kindle Edition.

Abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia are not only questions for women and other relatives directly involved-nor are they the prerogatives of a few people who have thought through the wider ramifications. They are life-and-death issues that concern the whole human race and should be addressed as such. Putting pressure on the public and on legislators to accept a lower view of human beings, small groups of people often argue their case by using a few extreme examples to gain sympathy for ideas and practices that later are not limited to extreme cases. These then become the common practice of the day. Abortion, for example, has moved from something once considered unusual and now in many cases is an accepted form of “birth control.” Infanticide is following the same pattern. The argument begins with people who have a so-called vegetative existence. There then follows a tendency to expand the indications and eliminate almost any child who is unwanted for some reason. The same movement can be seen with euthanasia. The arguments now being put forward center on the “miserable” person in old age-one dying of cancer, for instance. But once the doors are open, there is no reason why the aged, weak, and infirm will not find that as they become economic burdens they will be eliminated under one pretext or another.

Francis A. Schaeffer;C. Everett Koop. Whatever Happened to the Human Race? (Revised Edition) (Kindle Locations 542-549). Kindle Edition.

The concern about euthanasia and the use of that term in our common vocabulary lead to a degradation of the elderly and, ultimately, to inferior health care for the elderly-as well as encouraging the thought that those who do not want to “shuffle off” quickly are somehow failing in their contribution to society. Economic considerations then creep in, and old folks are made to feel-in this crazy, schizophrenic society of ours-that they are in some way depriving younger and more deserving people of the medical care that is now being provided them at the same cost. For example, one of the undersecretaries of the Department of Health, Education and Welfare suggested in 1977 that the various states that did not enact living-will legislation be penalized by having withdrawn or curtailed the federal funds that would ordinarily supplement state funds allocated for certain major programs.”

Francis A. Schaeffer;C. Everett Koop. Whatever Happened to the Human Race? (Revised Edition) (Kindle Locations 829-834). Kindle Edition.

Now, consider the reporting that questioned whether or not Vice President Dick Cheney should have received his heart transplant, given how old he is. Because ObamaCare will ultimately ration health care based on political factors that try to answer the question about who should receive care relative to age and/or habit, we can be confident that these decisionswill be life and death decisions that are based on political considerations.

I’m telling you now: ObamaCare coupled with our lack of commitment to following God, will lead to euthanasia because old people will be deemed “not worthy” of expensive care because of their diminished utility and value to society. Just like babies are killed in the womb for the convenience of the mother, elderly people who need expensive care to keep living will be cast aside – perhaps nicely – but still cast aside and denied the care they need because it will be deemed too expensive and/or an impairment on the care of someone else who is more useful to society. And God forbid that the care of the elderly inconvenience anyone in this “it’s all about me” age. As costs (predictably) skyrocket for health care once the government is in full control, we’ll find that the concepts of euthanasia will become more and more acceptable to society. It might take another 30 – 50 years, but it will become acceptable.

Add to this the coming wars between the generations as the older folks demand the goodies and benefits from the government that they believe they are entitled to and the younger generation fighting tooth and nail to not have their taxes raised anymore to pay for programs that are obviously going bankrupt.

Folks, I’m not usually a pessimist, but I see significant class, generational and health care warfare
emerging in the county in the coming 30 years. It will not surprise me at all if many in their 40′s and 50′s – including myself – will find ourselves in the middle of a storm as politicians continue to pit groups against each other based on class, income, health care, generational issues and so forth. And the timing and method of the ending of our lives may rest in the hands of a bureaucrat whose job it is to figure out who should and should not receive immediate care due to scarce resources and government mandates.

What does the Bible have to say about all of this? Briefly, in the Scriptures we find that:

  • The younger members of a family should look after the elderly in their family and the church should look after widows who are unable to provide for themselves. The church has allowed itself to neglect clear teaching from the Bible because they have forfeited their responsibility to the government.
  • Retirement is not a Biblical concept. American Christians have bought into the lie that they deserve to spend their final years in the lap of convenience and leisure. Neither is commanded or advocated in the Bible.
  • Personal responsibility is an assumed value and principle behind nearly every command in Scripture. For example, “let him who stole steal no more, but rather, let him work with his hands, so that he will have something to give”. Think about it. You can’t move from being a thief to being a giver without taking personal responsibility both for stealing and for giving. However, if my stealing is classified as a compulsion or is explained by a life of poverty or abuse during my childhood, then I’m no longer responsible for my actions. To the extent that our government and/or society diminishes our responsibility to own our words and actions and the results from our words and actions, to that extent, the Scriptures are being supplanted with human foolishness. Our society is filled with people who honestly believe that the government is responsible to make them happy, to provide for them, to ameliorate their pain and to give them what they lack. We won’t survive as a country if we continue to allow ourselves to grow a dependency class who lack a sense of personal responsibility

What is incredibly frightening is that some of this future rests literally in the hands of one man – one justice of the Supreme Court – who will probably be the deciding vote on whether Obamacare lives or dies. One vote. I don’t think I’m overstating it when I say that the quality of our future rests literally in the hands of a few unelected people who may make a legal judgment based primarily on their own political views. AS our country moves farther and farther from the Lord, our views of God and man continue to deteriorate. The logical conclusion of a society that has jettisoned God is one where government assumes the role of God.

Interestingly enough, Christians alone can change this future – without taking political sides. 2 Chronicles tells us that if we simply forsake our sin, call on God’s name, humble ourselves and pray, He will hear our prayers and will heal our land. This is such a strong promise that I wonder if we honestly believe it can happen. The future that Schaeffer, Koop and I have outlined need not become reality if Christians will simply forsake our sin and call on the Lord in humility.

I’m speaking to Christians now – the rest of you can eavesdrop – are you willing to get on your knees and cry out to God for your sin and the sin of this nation? Are you willing to be inconvenienced in order to help drive healing in this nation? Do you take 2 Chronicles 7.14 seriously?

I’m sure some who have read this will think that my post is over the top – it may be hard to pull your eyes out from under your forehead. I get it. But in the absence of our nation returning to God, I believe it is predictable that we will end up not only killing our unborn for the sake of convenience, but we’ll also (effectively) kill our elderly to save on costs and to not inconvenience ourselves too much should they consume too much health care resources.

Bill English, CEO

SANCTITY OF LIFE SATURDAY 41 Years Later: Why Roe Said What It Did by Justin Buckley Dyer

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Francis Schaeffer “BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY” Whatever…HTTHR

Dr. Francis schaeffer – The flow of Materialism(from Part 4 of Whatever happened to human race?)

Dr. Francis Schaeffer – The Biblical flow of Truth & History (intro)

Francis Schaeffer – The Biblical Flow of History & Truth (1)

Dr. Francis Schaeffer – The Biblical Flow of Truth & History (part 2)

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41 Years Later: WhyRoe Said What It Did

Few, if any, constitutional scholars think Justice Harry Blackmun’s majority opinion in Roe v. Wade (1973) was flawless. When Jack Balkin invited eleven leading scholars to rewrite the decision for his 2007 book What Roe v. Wade Should Have Said, each of the contributors departed in some way from the Court’s original approach. The one thing scholars across the ideological spectrum can agree on is that the Court should have said something else.

What the Court did say in Roe is that the anti-abortion laws on the books in Texas violated the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. In dicta, the Court then offered a précis of abortion history and outlined a trimester-based regulatory framework for state legislatures in a stated attempt to balance “the respective interests involved” in abortion in light of “the profound problems of the present day.” When read together with its companion case Doe v. Bolton (1973)—which stipulated a broad “health” exception to any legislative proscription of even late-term abortion—Roe created a legal regime that Time magazine soon dubbed “abortion on demand.” Forty-one years later, the United States is one of four countries—along with Canada, North Korea, and China—that allow abortion for virtually any reason at any time during pregnancy.

Why RoeMany people have criticized the decision. Clarke Forsythe, Senior Counsel at Americans United for Life, takes on a more difficult task in Abuse of Discretion: The Inside Story of Roe v. Wade. Instead of asking what Roe should have said, Forsythe asks why Roe said what it did. Forsythe’s nuanced answer comes in a 350-page inquiry into American history, law, and politics. In addition to covering familiar ground, Abuse of Discretion reveals little-known details from the published papers of Supreme Court justices, and the book includes an additional 100 pages of endnotes. Although Forsythe takes a measured tone throughout, he is a professional pro-life advocate, and his book critically recounts the Court’s many missteps, errors, and fabrications.

The first mistake, according to Forsythe, was the Supreme Court’s decision to even hear the Roe and Doe cases. Under the assumption that they involved only technical questions about federal intervention in state court proceedings, the Court initially agreed to review them. As Bob Woodward and Scott Armstrong explained in their 1979 book The Brethren, the “two abortion cases were not to be argued primarily about abortion rights, but about jurisdiction.” Since the cases were jurisdictional, the justices were unconcerned with the lack of a factual record in both Roe and Doe. Yet after deciding that the Court did have jurisdiction to hear the cases, the Court proceeded to consider whether abortion was a constitutional right without a concrete factual and medical record to review in either case.

The lack of a factual record brought up additional questions about standing and whether there was an actual case or controversy. At no point in the lower court hearings did the parties present evidence. There was no criminal trial, no one presented medical testimony, and no one cross-examined a witness. As the attorney representing the state of Georgia, Dorothy Beasley, acknowledged, the state cases had proceeded as if “the facts don’t matter.” These initial red flags, Forsythe maintains, “suggest that the Court should have reached no decision, or sent the case back for trial, or taken other cases with a trial record, or at least reached a narrow decision.”

Instead, the Court considered abortion entirely in the abstract and spun off a decision that treated legal precedent and history with as little concern as the facts of the actual cases. The most relevant line of precedents for the issue of abortion stemmed from Griswold v. Connecticut (1965), a case that invalidated a state anti-contraception statute under a constitutional right to privacy in marriage. Yet during oral arguments in Griswold, the justices considered and rejected the idea that the legal principle involved in Griswold would extend to abortion. “I take it abortion involves killing a life in being, doesn’t it?” Justice Brennan asked during oral arguments. “Isn’t that a rather different problem from conception?” With this Griswold’s attorney, Thomas Emerson, agreed.

Either Brennan was bluffing in 1965 or his views had changed dramatically by the early 1970s. About the same time oral arguments were getting underway in Roe and Doe, Brennan wrote the decision for the Court in Eisenstadt v. Baird (1972), an Equal Protection case that invalidated a state ban on the sale of contraception to single people. In his opinion Brennan insisted that if “the right of privacy” championed in Griswold “means anything, it is the right of the individual, married or single, to be free from unwarranted governmental intrusion into matters so fundamentally affecting a person as the decision whether to bear or beget a child.” As a former clerk to Justice Blackmun, Edward Lazarus, later recalled,

Eisenstadt provided the ideal opportunity to build a rhetorical bridge between the right to use contraception and the abortion issue pending in Roe. And taking full advantage, Brennan slipped into Eisenstadt the tendentious statement explicitly linking privacy to the decision whether to have an abortion. As one clerk from that term recalled, ‘We all saw that sentence, and we smiled about it. Everyone understood what that sentence was doing.’ It was papering over holes in the doctrine.

Brennan’s rhetoric in Eisenstadt connected the right to marital privacy in Griswold with the right to abortion in Roe. (And, indeed, Blackmun quoted the “bear or beget” line from Eisenstadt in his Roe opinion.)

Eisenstadt may have papered over some holes in the doctrine, but others remained. The Supreme Court’s post-New Deal civil liberties jurisprudence had increasingly emphasized history as an objective guide to interpreting constitutional provisions. In order to interpret the Constitution “free of emotion and predilection,” Blackmun insisted, the Roe Court accordingly “placed some emphasis” on “medical and medical-legal history.” Forsythe relies heavily on the work of Villanova law professor Joseph Dellapenna to demonstrate that the history the Court relied on was (a) false and (b) the people who wrote the history knew it was false. In the 1960s, activist legal scholars crafted a new historical narrative for the explicit purpose of legal advocacy.

Blackmun cited one such scholar, Cyril Means, seven times in his Roe opinion. Means, a New York Law School Professor and general counsel for the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws (NARAL), made two novel claims in law review articles published in the late 1960s and early 1970s. First, he argued that abortion was a common-law liberty at the time of the American founding. Second, he argued that protecting unborn children was not the purpose of anti-abortion statutes passed in the middle of the nineteenth century. Instead, Means asserted, the sole purpose of the anti-abortion laws was the protection of women from dangerous abortion procedures. Neither of these claims is true, but truth was never the point of Means’ scholarly project. The point was to offer a way for the Court to strike down these century-old statutes while ostensibly maintaining continuity with American history. “Where the important thing is to win the case no matter how,” Yale law student and legal intern David Tundermann wrote in a revealing memo to one of Jane Roe’s lawyers, Roy Lucas,

I suppose I agree with Means’s technique: begin with a scholarly attempt at historical research; if it doesn’t work, fudge it as necessary; write a piece so long that others will read only your introduction and conclusion; then keep citing it until courts begin picking it up. This preserves the guise of impartial scholarship while advancing the proper ideological goals.

The truth is nearly the opposite of what Means had claimed. As Dellapenna and others have meticulously documented, abortion was always treated as a serious criminal offense at common law. Although evidentiary rules made abortion prior to quickening largely unindictable, abortion was never considered to be anything akin to a constitutional right. Additionally, the historical record clearly demonstrates that the primary stated purpose of the nineteenth century anti-abortion statutes was the protection of unborn children.

Another spurious historical claim trumpeted by advocates of abortion reform in the 1960s and 1970s was that thousands upon thousands of women died annually from illegal “back alley” abortions. In a 1968 law review article, Roy Lucas claimed illegal abortion took the lives of “ten thousand American women each year.” Others, such as the founder of NARAL, Dr. Bernard Nathanson, put the figure at “5,000 to 10,000 deaths a year.” Nathanson later confessed, “I knew the figures were totally false, and I suppose the others did too if they stopped to think about it.” The figures were, indeed, absurd. According to the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) available at the time, total maternal deaths from all causes had steadily declined from 7,267 in 1942 to 780 in 1972. In 1972, the NCHS listed total “abortion deaths”–which included both spontaneous miscarriage and illegal abortion–at 140.

Many activists repeated such dubious historical claims because they thought the end of abortion reform justified deceptive means. In “the ‘morality’ of our revolution,” Nathanson later wrote of the common but outrageous maternal deaths estimate, “it was a useful figure, widely accepted, so why go out of our way to correct it with honest statistics?” Although the success of the reform movement made use of these statistical and historical falsehoods, Forsythe chronicles many other cultural, social, and legal factors that contributed to the movement against the states’ longstanding abortion restrictions.

These include the campaign against population growth, increased marketing of the contraceptive pill in the 1960s, funding and support from wealthy benefactors such as John Rockefeller and Warren Buffet, and the American Medical Association’s eventual endorsement of abortion reform. The political and cultural movements were well underway in 1973 when the Supreme Court tried to fashion a national solution to the abortion issue.

Forsythe suggests that had the Supreme Court not stepped in when it did, we likely would have ended with a politically untidy resolution “in which most States, perhaps, retained their criminal prohibitions but some experimented with broad exceptions.” This is what will happen if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade tomorrow.

Getting rid of Roe will not automatically criminalize abortion. Instead, state legislatures will be forced to craft abortion policy that more accurately reflects public opinion in their state. “For example,” Forsythe speculates, “ten to twelve states might maintain abortion on demand as under Roe, ten states might prohibit abortion except to save the life of the mother, and thirty states might move toward a more restrictive policy than that allowed under Roe.” The political solution is not great, and it will not satisfy activists on either side of the debate. But it is plausible, and it is better than what the Supreme Court bequeathed in Roe.

Forsythe, a man who has spent his life for pro-life causes, makes a strong case for returning the issue back to American legislatures and renewing the public debate about the “foundation for equal dignity and human flourishing in our democratic republic.” As Forsythe shows in Abuse of Discretion, that debate has been stunted and skewed by a badly reasoned decision imprudently rendered by an inept Court with disastrous political consequences that continue to haunt us today.

Justin Buckley Dyer is an assistant professor in the department of political science at the University of Missouri-Columbia. He is the author of Slavery, Abortion, and the Politics of Constitutional Meaning (Cambridge University Press, 2013), Natural Law and the Antislavery Constitutional Tradition (Cambridge University Press, 2012), and the editor of American Soul: The Contested Legacy of the Declaration of Independence (2012).

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Pro-life Pamphlet “ABORTION: AVENUES FOR ACTION ” was influenced by Koop and Schaeffer

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Pro-life Pamphlet “The Crime Of Being Alive Abortion, Euthanasia, & Infanticide” was influenced by Koop and Schaeffer

Pro-life Pamphlet “The Crime of Being Alive: Abortion, Euthanasia, & Infanticide” was influenced by Koop and Schaeffer   Francis Schaeffer Whatever Happened to the Human Race (Episode 1) ABORTION Francis Schaeffer “BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY” Whatever…HTTHR I read lots of Francis Schaeffer and Dr. C. Everett Koop’s books and watched their films in the late […]

“Schaeffer Sunday” Abortion debating with Ark Times Bloggers Part 12 “Is there a biological reason to be pro-life?” and the article “How Francis Schaeffer shaped Michele Bachman’s pro-life views” (includes the film TRUTH AND HISTORY and editorial cartoon)

I have debated with Ark Times Bloggers many times in the past on many different subjects. Abortion is probably the most often debated subject and I have noticed that many pro-life individuals are now surfacing on the Arkansas Times Blog.  Here are some examples. Arhogfan501 asserted: This is the beginning of the end for recreational abortion […]

“Sanctity of Life Saturday” Pro-life atheist Nat Hentoff quotes wise 9 yr kid concerning abortion, “It doesn’t matter what month. It still means killing the babies.”

The pro-life atheist Nat Hentoff wrote a fine article below I wanted to share with you. Nat Hentoff is an atheist, but he became a pro-life activist because of the scientific evidence that shows that the unborn child is a distinct and separate human being and even has a separate DNA. His perspective is a […]

Open letter to President Obama (Part 633) Pro-life atheist Nat Hentoff quotes wise 9 yr kid concerning abortion, “It doesn’t matter what month. It still means killing the babies.”

Open letter to President Obama (Part 633) (Emailed to White House on 6-12-13.) President Obama c/o The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500 Dear Mr. President, I know that you receive 20,000 letters a day and that you actually read 10 of them every day. I really do respect you for trying to get […]

“Schaeffer Sunday” Abortion debating with Ark Times Bloggers Part 11 “Abortion and the AMA” and the article “Abortion and infanticide” by David L. Skeen (includes video “Slaughter of the Innocents” and editorial cartoon)

I have debated with Ark Times Bloggers many times in the past on many different subjects. Abortion is probably the most often debated subject and I have noticed that many pro-life individuals are now surfacing on the Arkansas Times Blog.  Here are some examples. Arhogfan501 asserted: This is the beginning of the end for recreational abortion […]

“Schaeffer Sunday” Abortion debating with Ark Times Bloggers Part 10 “Abortion and Child Abuse and Quotes from Whatever happened to the human race?” (includes the film DEATH BY SOMEONE’S CHOICE and editorial cartoon)

I have debated with Ark Times Bloggers many times in the past on many different subjects. Abortion is probably the most often debated subject and I have noticed that many pro-life individuals are now surfacing on the Arkansas Times Blog.  Here are some examples. Arhogfan501 asserted: This is the beginning of the end for recreational abortion […]

Open letter to President Obama (Part 621) Pro-life Atheist Nat Hentoff on the 19 yr old Ana Rosa Rodriguez the survivor of an abortion attempt

Open letter to President Obama (Part 621) (Emailed to White House on 6-12-13.) President Obama c/o The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500 Dear Mr. President, I know that you receive 20,000 letters a day and that you actually read 10 of them every day. I really do respect you for trying to get […]

FRIEDMAN FRIDAY 5 myths that conceal reality by Milton Friedman

 

A great speech below:

Here are the myths:Robber Baron Myth, The Cause of Great Depression Myth, The Demand for Government Service Myth, The Free Lunch Smith, and The Robin Hood Myth.

1) the Robber Baron Myth, 2) the Great Depression Myth, 3) the Demand for Government Service Myth, 4) the Free Lunch Myth, and 5) the Robin Hood Myth.  – See more at: http://mjperry.blogspot.com/2012/09/classic-milton-friedman-video-from-1977.html#sthash.dDqboqYg.dpuf
In this classic video from 1977, Milton Friedman delivers a 52-minute lecture at Utah State University titled “Myths That Conceal Reality” including: 1) the Robber Baron Myth, 2) the Great Depression Myth, 3) the Demand for Government Service Myth, 4) the Free Lunch Myth, and 5) the Robin Hood Myth.  – See more at: http://mjperry.blogspot.com/2012/09/classic-milton-friedman-video-from-1977.html#sthash.dDqboqYg.dpuf
In this classic video from 1977, Milton Friedman delivers a 52-minute lecture at Utah State University titled “Myths That Conceal Reality” including: 1) the Robber Baron Myth, 2) the Great Depression Myth, 3) the Demand for Government Service Myth, 4) the Free Lunch Myth, and 5) the Robin Hood Myth.  – See more at: http://mjperry.blogspot.com/2012/09/classic-milton-friedman-video-from-1977.html#sthash.dDqboqYg.dpuf

Sunday Reader: Milton Friedman’s “Five Myths That Conceal Reality”

Milton Friedman is one of the most influential thinkers of the last 100 years.  He stood in opposition to The Loud Left, but then a lot of people did.  His opinions alone are not what made him great.  What made him potent and unique is that he was a great teacher.  He spoke with a clarity and substance than exposed the rhetoric of The Left for the shallow, muddled logic it truly is.

I had the pleasure of hearing Milton speak at a university where I was lecturing.  He took on all comers after his talk, and the braver (or more suicidal) of the faculty challenged him.  In his gentle way he eviscerated every one of them; reduced them to silence, lost in the clutter and tangle of their socialist contradictions.

This YouTube below is long; almost an hour.  In the age of Twitter and IM and the hieroglyphs of text messages, of short attention spans and shorter tempers and bumper sticker politics, perhaps long, thoughtful statements of philosophy have no place anymore.  OTOH, if you’ve never heard Milton speak at length, you have been deprived of exposure to one of the great thinkers and teachers, a deprivation this YouTube will correct.

Spend a few minutes here, with Milton.  Especially if you get your daily news and political wisdom from those deep economic thinkers John Stewart and Stephen Colbert on Comedy Central, you literally need Milton more than you know.  Obama’s rhetorical nonsense and Joe Biden’s mental lapses, the entirety of Keynesian dogma, will never sound the same to you again.

Milton begins:  “As you are all aware, there has been a drastic shift in public attitudes public opinion in the past fifty years or so, with respect to the role of the individual on the one hand and the role of government and collective institutions on the other.”

“There has been a shift in the philosophy and attitudes of the public from a belief in individual responsibility, from a belief in a society in which the role of government was as an umpire, to a belief in a society in which the emphasis is on social responsibility and the role of government as Big Brother and protector of the individual. As always when such shifts arise in public opinion, they are largely produced and reinforced by the development of myths about prior experience.”

“Somebody wrote that a myth is like an air mattress: there’s nothing in it, but it’s wonderfully comfortable, and deflation causes an uncomfortable jolt. My purpose today is to give you that jolt.”

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OPEN LETTER TO “BRYCE DALLAS HOWARD” CONCERNING HER RELIGIOUS BELIEFS!!!!

_______________________________

How Should We then Live Episode 7 small (Age of Nonreason)

_______________________

Couple Cheryl and Ron Howard are pictured with their daughter Bryce Dallas

THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW: Barney’s First Car (1963) (Season 3 Episode 27) (HD 1080p)

Existentialism and the Meaningful Life [The Common Room]

Published on Jul 7, 2015

Torrey Common Room Discussion with Janelle Aijian, Matt Jenson, and Diane Vincent

June 18, 2015

Bryce Dallas Howard
Beverly Hills, CA 90210

Dear Mrs. Howard,

I wanted to tell you a cute story about your father. My  grandchildren only had access to local channels because their parents decided they needed to drop Cable TV. During this time they bought the first 5 years of ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW. About a year later they had practically memorized every line from your father who they really identified with since he was the only kid in the TV family. They seem to be paranoid about my car running out of gas. So I tell them we will do like the time Barney’s new car stopped working and Aunt Bee, Andy and Opie had to push!!!! They always correct me and point out that Gomer was pushing too!!! 

I just went to see the movie Jurassic World last night then I googled your name and noticed that a story from 2006 reported:

Bryce, who claims to have been a “total nerd,”discovered existentialism as a senior in high school and fell in love. “I was like, ‘This is it! This is my religion.’ I had never felt a connection to any sort of spirituality before that. It was very basic — you’re responsible for the choices that you make — but it was mind-blowing at the time.” In her spare hours she devoured books by Sartre, Beckett and Camus. She says her 10th-grade English teacher, Mr. Scotch, was one of her best friends.

Furthermore, many people besides you Mrs. Howard are living lives with an existentialism worldview even though they don’t know what the word existentialism means. I love the works of Francis Schaeffer and I have been on the internet reading several blogs that talk about Schaeffer’s work and the work below  on what existentialism is thought to be was really helpful and especially his 25 minute film THE AGE OF NON-REASON from the film series HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? because it probes the issue of EXISTENTIALISM. It can be found on You Tube.  

How Should We then Live Episode 7 small (Age of Nonreason)

Transcript from “How Should we then live?”:

Humanist man beginning only from himself has concluded that he is only a machine. Humanist man has no place for a personal God, but there is also no place for man’s significance as man and no place for love, no place for freedom.

Man is only a machine, but the men who hold this position could not and can not live like machines. If they could then modern man would not have his tensions either in his intellectual position or in his life, but he can’t. So they leap away from reason to try to find something that gives meaning to their lives, to life itself, even though to do so they deny their reason.

Once this is done any type of thing could be put there. Because in the area of non-reason, reason gives no basis for a choice. This is the hallmark of modern man. How did it happen? It happened because proud humanist man, though he was finite, insisted in beginning only from himself and only from what he could learn and not from other knowledge, he did not succeed. Perhaps the best known of existentialist philosophers was Jean Paul Sartre. He used to spend much of his time here in Paris at the Les Deux Magots (as pictured below).

Sartre’s position is in the area of reason everything is absurd, but one can authenticate himself, that is give validity to his existence by an act of the willIn Sartre’s position one could equally help an old woman across the street or run her down.

Reason was not involved, and there was nothing to show the direction this authentication by an act of the will should take. But Sartre himself could live consistently with his own position. At a certain point he signed the Algerian Manifesto which declared that the Algerian war was a dirty war. This action meant that man could use his reason to decide that some things were right and some things were wrong and so he destroyed his own system.

___________________

Francis Schaeffer pictured below:

Francis Schaeffer

Can a man  or a woman find lasting meaning without God? Three thousand years ago, Solomon took a look at life “under the sun” in his book of Ecclesiastes. Christian scholar Ravi Zacharias has noted, “The key to understanding the Book of Ecclesiastes is the term ‘under the sun.’ What that literally means is you lock God out of a closed system, and you are left with only this world of time plus chance plus matter.”

Let me show you some inescapable conclusions if you choose to live without God in the picture. Schaeffer noted that Solomon came to these same conclusions when he looked at life “under the sun.”

  1. Death is the great equalizer (Eccl 3:20, “All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return.”)
  2. Chance and time have determined the past, and they will determine the future.  (Ecclesiastes 9:11-13 “I have seen something else under the sun:  The race is not to the swift
    or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant  or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.  Moreover, no one knows when their hour will come: As fish are caught in a cruel net, or birds are taken in a snare, so people are trapped by evil times  that fall unexpectedly upon them.”)
  3. Power reigns in this life, and the scales are not balanced(Eccl 4:1; “Again I looked and saw all the oppression that was taking place under the sun: I saw the tears of the oppressed—
    and they have no comforter; power was on the side of their oppressors—  and they have no comforter.” 7:15 “In this meaningless life of mine I have seen both of these: the righteous perishing in their righteousness,  and the wicked living long in their wickedness. ).
  4. Nothing in life gives true satisfaction without God including knowledge (1:16-18), ladies and liquor (2:1-3, 8, 10, 11), and great building projects (2:4-6, 18-20).
  5. There is no ultimate lasting meaning in life. (1:2)

By the way, the final chapter of Ecclesiastes finishes with Solomon emphasizing that serving God is the only proper response of man. Solomon looks above the sun and brings God back into the picture in the final chapter of the book in Ecclesiastes 12:13-14, “ Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.  For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.”

The answer to finding meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.  I sent you a CD that starts off with the song DUST IN THE WIND by Kerry Livgren of the group KANSAS which was a hit song in 1978 when it rose to #6 on the charts because so many people connected with the message of the song. It included these words, “All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

Kerry Livgren himself said that he wrote the song because he saw where man was without a personal God in the picture. Both Kerry Livgren and the bass player Dave Hope of Kansas became Christians eventually. Kerry Livgren first tried Eastern Religions and Dave Hope had to come out of a heavy drug addiction. I was shocked and elated to see their personal testimony on The 700 Club in 1981 and that same  interview can be seen on You Tube today. Livgren lives in Topeka, Kansas today where he teaches “Diggers,” a Sunday school class at Topeka Bible ChurchDAVE HOPE is the head of Worship, Evangelism and Outreach at Immanuel Anglican Church in Destin, Florida.

The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Thank you again for your time and I know how busy you are.

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.com, http://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, Box 23416, LittleRock, AR 72221, United States

 

You can hear DAVE HOPE and Kerry Livgren’s stories from this youtube link:

(part 1 ten minutes)

(part 2 ten minutes)

Kansas – Dust in the Wind (Official Video)

Uploaded on Nov 7, 2009

Pre-Order Miracles Out of Nowhere now at http://www.miraclesoutofnowhere.com

About the film:
In 1973, six guys in a local band from America’s heartland began a journey that surpassed even their own wildest expectations, by achieving worldwide superstardom… watch the story unfold as the incredible story of the band KANSAS is told for the first time in the DVD Miracles Out of Nowhere.

Adrian Rogers on Darwinism

10 Worldview and Truth

In above clip Schaeffer quotes Paul’s speech in Greece from Romans 1 (from Episode FINAL CHOICES)

Two Minute Warning: How Then Should We Live?: Francis Schaeffer at 100

A Christian Manifesto Francis Schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer “BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY” Whatever…HTTHR

#02 How Should We Then Live? (Promo Clip) Dr. Francis Schaeffer

The clip above is from episode 9 THE AGE OF PERSONAL PEACE AND AFFLUENCE

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FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 64 THE BEATLES (Part P The Meaning of Stg. Pepper’s song SHE’S LEAVING HOME according to Schaeffer!!!!) (Featured artist Stuart Sutcliffe)

Melanie Coe ran away from home in 1967 when she was 15. Paul McCartney read about her in the papers and wrote ‘She’s Leaving Home’ for Sgt.Pepper’s. Melanie didn’t know Paul’s song was about her, but actually, the two did meet earlier, when Paul was the judge and Melanie a contestant in Ready Steady Go!

The subtitles are produced live for The One Show, so some seconds late and with a few mistakes.

Melanie at 17 in the picture that made the front pages in 1967 and inspired the Beatles.

Melanie’s first moment of fame, receiving a prize from Paul McCartney for miming to Brenda Lee on Ready Steady Go! in 1963

Melanie in 2008
She’s Leaving Home- The Beatles

Uploaded on Jan 19, 2009

She’s Leaving Home
The Beatles
Sgt. Pepper’s

Wednesday morning at five o’clock as the day begings
Silently closing her bedroom door
Leaving the note that she hoped would say more
She goes downstairs to the kitchen clutching her hankerchief
Quietly turing the backdoor key
Stepping outside she is free.
She (We gave her most of our lives)
is leaving (Sacraficed most of our lives)
home (We gave her everything money could buy)
She’s leaving home after living alone
For so many years. Bye, bye
Father snores as his wife gets into her dressing gown
Picks up the letter that’s lying there
Standing alone at the top of the stairs
She breaks down and cries to her husband
Daddy our baby’s gone.
Why would she treat us so thoughtlessly
How could she do this to me.
She (We never though of ourselves)
Is leaving (Never a thought for ourselves)
home (We struggled hard all our lives to get by)
She’s leaving home after living alone
For so many years. Bye, bye
Friday morning at nine o’clock she is far away
Waiting to keep the appointment she made
Meeting a man from the motor trade.
She What did we do that was wrong
Is having We didn’t know it was wrong
Fun Fun is the one thing that money can’t buy
Something inside that was always denied
For so many years. Bye, Bye
She’s leaving home bye bye

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#02 How Should We Then Live? (Promo Clip) Dr. Francis Schaeffer

Melanie Coe – She’s Leaving Home – The Beatles

Uploaded on Nov 25, 2010

Why is she leaving home? Francis Schaeffer noted on pages  15-17 in volume 4 of THE COMPLETE WORKS OF FRANCIS SCHAEFFER from the original book “The Church at the end of the 20th Century”  the reason she left and it was because of the bankruptcy of the materialistic views of her parents. Schaeffer points that for many years there was one message that the  media was promoting and that was since we now believe in the “UNIFORMITY OF NATURAL CAUSES IN A CLOSED SYSTEM we are left with only the impersonal plus time plus chance.” Schaeffer continued:

What is taught is that there is no final truth,  no meaning, no absolutes, that it is only that we have not found truth and meaning, but that they do not exist. 
The student and the common man may not be able to analyze it, but day after day, day after day, they are being battered by this concept.  We have now had several generations exposed to this and we must not be blind to the fact that it is being excepted increasingly.
In contrast, this way of thinking has not had as much influence on the middle class. Many of these keep thinking in the old way as a memory of the time before the Christian base was lost in this post-Christian world. However,  the majority in the middle-class have no real basis for their values since so many have given up the Christian viewpoint. They just function on the “memory.” This is why so many young people have felt that the middle class is ugly. They feel middle-class people are plastic,  ugly and plastic because they try to tell others what to do on the basis of their own values but with no ground for those values. They  have no base and they have no clear categories for their choices of right and wrong. Their choices tend to turn on what is for their material benefit. 
Take for example the fact faculty members who cheered when the student revolt struck against the administration  and who immediately began to howl when the students started to burn up faculty manuscripts. They have no categories to say this is right and that is wrong. Many such people still hang on to their old values by memory but they have no base for them at all. 
A few years ago John Gardner head of the urban coalition spoke in Washington to a group of student leaders. His topic was on restoring values in our culture. When he finished there was a dead silence then finally one man from Harvard stood up and in a moment of brilliance asked, “Sir upon what base do you build your values?” I have never felt more sorry for anybody in my life. He simply looked down and said, “I do not know.” I had spoken that same day about what I was writing in the first part of this book. It was almost too good an illustration of my lecture. Here was a man appealing to the young people for a return to values but he is offering nothing to build on.  man who was trying to tell his hearers not to drop out and yet giving no reason why they should not. Functioning only on a dim memory, these are the parents who have turned off their children when their children ask why and how. When their children crying out, “Yours is a plastic culture.” They are silent. We had the response so beautifully stated in the 1960s in the Beatles’ Sergeant Pepper’s song “She is leaving home.”  “We gave her everything money could buy.” This is the only answer many parents can give.
They are bothered about what they read in the newspapers concerning the way the country and the culture are going. When they read of the pornographic plays, see pornographic films on TV, they are distressed. They have a vague unhappiness about it, feel threatened by all of it and yet have no base upon which to found their judgments. 
And tragically such people are everywhere. They constitute the largest body in our culture-northern Europe, Britain, and also in America and other countries as well. They are a majority-what is called for a time the “silent majority”–but they are weak as water. They are people who like the old ways because they are pleasant memories, because they give what to them is a comfortable way to live but they have no basis for their values. 
Education for example is excepted and pressed upon their children as the only thinkable thing to pursue. Success  is starting the child at the earliest possible age and then within the least possible years he is obtaining a Masters or PhD degree. Yet if the child asks why?, the only answers are first because it gives social status and then because statistics show that if you have a university or college education you will make more money. There is no base for real values are even the why of a real education.

How Should We Then Live – Episode 9 – The Age of Personal Peace & Affluence

Whatever is True, Whatever is Noble, Whatever is Right…Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band

In the late summer, early fall of 1966, The Beatles were tired of being The Beatles.  The Fab Four couldn’t go anywhere without being mobbed, they had grown to hate touring because the wild screams of young girls drowned out their primitive amplifiers to the point that they couldn’t hear themselves play!  They took a break and stewed in jealousy over the recently released Beach Boys album Pet Sounds that critics were proclaiming to be the most innovative material since the rise of rock & roll itself.

On the return from an African vacation, Paul McCartney had an epiphany–create an altar image and release a groundbreaking concept record that would be a show in and of itself.  The result was Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band.  McCartney hoped to create an album that captured the essence of childhood and everyday life.  A number of songs effectively do just that (even the controversial “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds,’ which most took to be a reference to LSD was in fact an ode to a picture drawn by John Lennon’s son Julian) but the concept proved too difficult even for the infamously disciplined Beatles to pull off and, ultimately, many of the songs were simply the best the four had to offer at the time.

The effect was still stunning.  Rolling Stone has twice proclaimed the album to be the best rock & roll record ever made.  Every song on Sgt. Pepper’s is a masterpiece, from the the title track which serves as an introduction to the somber but brilliant “A Day in the Life.”

When I first listened to Sgt. Pepper’s from beginning to finish, I was only 17 and failed to see why it was so influential but, after working for rock & roll icons Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, I came to see that from the perspective of 1967, Sgt. Pepper’s changed pop music forever.  To appreciate today, one must still listen to it in context and listen to it you must without distraction and from beginning to end.

While many “Beatlemaniacs” identify “With A Little Help From My Friends” or the catchy “When I’m Sixty-Four” as their favorite tracks, I always believed “She’s Leaving Home” was the most thoughtful track.  McCartney was inspired to write the song after reading a newspaper article about a young girl who had disappeared.  The tune captures a moment where a girl leaves the home of her parents who tried to give her “everything money could buy” but still left her feeling as if she were alone.

As a Christian listening to Sgt. Pepper’s it is hard not to think of Francis Schaeffer who reportedly cried when the Free Speech movement died despite his conservatism.  Schaeffer did not agree with the far left but was pleased to see a generation who, like the girl in “She’s Leaving Home,” was looking for more than just material comfort.  Then and now, there is a myth born in the depths of hell that the meaning of life is a comfortable existence with a lot of money and the toys.  In fact, life is about a relationship with God through Jesus Christ.  Unfortunately, the only one of the Beatles who ever truly investigated the liberation of Christianity was John Lennon who had a regular correspondence with Jerry Falwell up until his death.  Sadly, Yoko Ono apparently opposed John’s inquiries.

Regardless, Sgt. Pepper’s is worth your time.

Next week, we will look at the art of Jackson Pollock.

Francis Schaeffer pictured below:

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Another website looks at the song:

She’s Leaving Home

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
“She’s Leaving Home”
Song by the Beatles from the album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
Released 1 June 1967
Recorded 17 March 1967,
EMI Studios, London
Genre
Length 3:26 (mono), 3:35 (stereo)
Label Parlophone
Writer Lennon–McCartney
Producer George Martin
Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Bandtrack listing

She’s Leaving Home” is a Lennon–McCartney song, released in 1967 on the Beatles album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Paul McCartney wrote and sang the verse and John Lennon the chorus while neither George Harrison nor Ringo Starr were involved in the recording. The song was performed entirely by a small string orchestra arranged by Mike Leander, and was one of only a handful of Beatles songs in which the members did not play any instruments on the recording.

Background[edit]

Paul McCartney:

John and I wrote ‘She’s Leaving Home’ together. It was my inspiration. We’d seen a story in the newspaper about a young girl who’d left home and not been found, there were a lot of those at the time, and that was enough to give us a story line. So I started to get the lyrics: she slips out and leaves a note and then the parents wake up … It was rather poignant. I like it as a song, and when I showed it to John, he added the long sustained notes, and one of the nice things about the structure of the song is that it stays on those chords endlessly. Before that period in our song-writing we would have changed chords but it stays on the C chord. It really holds you. It’s a really nice little trick and I think it worked very well.

While I was showing that to John, he was doing the Greek chorus, the parents’ view: ‘We gave her most of our lives, we gave her everything money could buy.’ I think that may have been in the runaway story, it might have been a quote from the parents. Then there’s the famous little line about a man from the motor trade; people have since said that was Terry Doran, who was a friend who worked in a car showroom, but it was just fiction, like the sea captain in “Yellow Submarine“, they weren’t real people.[1]

The newspaper story McCartney mentioned was from the front page of the Daily Mirror, about a girl named Melanie Coe. Although McCartney invented most of the content in the song, Coe, who was 17 at the time, claims that most of it was accurate. In actuality, Coe did not “meet a man from the motor trade”, but instead a croupier, and left in the afternoon while her parents were at work, while the girl in the song leaves early in the morning as her parents sleep. Coe was found ten days later because she had let slip where her boyfriend worked.[2] When she returned home, she was pregnant and had an abortion.[3]

In a bizarre coincidence, Coe had actually met McCartney three years earlier, in 1963 when he chose her as the prize winner in a dancing contest on ITV’s Ready Steady Go!.[4] An update on Coe appeared in the Daily Mail in May 2008,[5] and she was interviewed about the song on the BBC programme The One Show on 24 November 2010.

Recording[edit]

The day before McCartney wanted to work on the song’s score, he learned that George Martin, who usually handled the Beatles’ string arrangements, was not available. He contacted Mike Leander, who did it in Martin’s place. It was the first time a Beatles song was not arranged by Martin (and the only time it was done with the Beatles’ consent: Phil Spector‘s orchestration of Let It Be was done without McCartney’s knowledge or approval). Martin was hurt by McCartney’s actions, but he produced the song and conducted the string section. The harp was played by Sheila Bromberg, one of the first studio musicians to appear on a Beatles record.[6][7]

The stereo version of the song runs at a slower speed than the mono mix, and consequently is a semitone lower in pitch. This is mentioned in the booklet accompanying The Beatles in Mono CD box set, but no reason is given. A 2007 Mojo magazine article revealed the mono mix was sped up to make Paul sound younger and tighten the track.[8]

Critical reception[edit]

When discussing Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, composer Ned Rorem described “She’s Leaving Home” as “equal to any song that Schubert ever wrote.”[9] In April 1967, McCartney visited Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys in L.A. to preview Sgt. Pepper, playing “She’s Leaving Home” on the piano for him and his wife. “We both just cried,” Wilson said. “It was beautiful.”[3]

Writers Lennon and McCartney received the 1967 Ivor Novello award for Best Song Musically and Lyrically.[10]

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The Beatles – She’s Leaving Home – Lyrics

Published on May 17, 2012

A beautiful Paul McCartney song from the 1967 BEATLES masterpiece SGT. PEPPER’S LONELY HEARTS CLUB BAND.

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When you think about the song SHE’S LEAVING HOME, you must come to the conclusion that the Beatles knew exactly what was going through the young person’s mind in the 1960’s. No wonder in the video THE AGE OF NON-REASON Schaeffer noted,  ” Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band…for a time it became the rallying cry for young people throughout the world. It expressed the essence of their lives, thoughts and their feelings.”

How Should We then Live Episode 7 small (Age of Nonreason)

There is evidence that points to the fact that the Bible is historically true as Schaeffer pointed out in episode 5 of WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACEThere is a basis then for faith in Christ alone for our eternal hope. This link shows how to do that.

The Bible and Archaeology – Is the Bible from God? (Kyle Butt 42 min)

You want some evidence that indicates that the Bible is true? Here is a good place to start and that is taking a closer look at the archaeology of the Old Testament times. Is the Bible historically accurate? Here are some of the posts I have done in the past on the subject: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)4. Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically. 5. The Discovery of the Hittites6.Shishak Smiting His Captives7. Moabite Stone8Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III9A Verification of places in Gospel of John and Book of Acts., 9B Discovery of Ebla Tablets10. Cyrus Cylinder11. Puru “The lot of Yahali” 9th Century B.C.E.12. The Uzziah Tablet Inscription13. The Pilate Inscription14. Caiaphas Ossuary14 B Pontius Pilate Part 214c. Three greatest American Archaeologists moved to accept Bible’s accuracy through archaeology.

September 19, 2011

By Elvis Costello

My absolute favorite albums are Rubber Soul and Revolver. On both records you can hear references to other music — R&B, Dylan, psychedelia — but it’s not done in a way that is obvious or dates the records. When you picked up Revolver, you knew it was something different. Heck, they are wearing sunglasses indoors in the picture on the back of the cover and not even looking at the camera . . . and the music was so strange and yet so vivid. If I had to pick a favorite song from those albums, it would be “And Your Bird Can Sing” . . . no, “Girl” . . . no, “For No One” . . . and so on, and so on. . . .

Their breakup album, Let It Be, contains songs both gorgeous and jagged. I suppose ambition and human frailty creeps into every group, but they delivered some incredible performances. I remember going to Leicester Square and seeing the film of Let It Be in 1970. I left with a melancholy feeling.

82

‘She’s Leaving Home’

the beatles 100 greatest songs
John Downing/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Main Writer: McCartney
Recorded: March 17 and 20, 1967
Released: June 2, 1967
Not released as a single

“She’s Leaving Home” was inspired by a newspaper story about a well-to-do 17-year-old girl named Melanie Coe who disappeared from her parents’ home in London. While McCartney took the perspective of the teen runaway, Lennon sang counterpoint (the “Greek chorus,” as McCartney called it) in the voice of the heartbroken parents.

McCartney was so impatient to record the song, he hired arranger Mike Leander to orchestrate the strings instead of waiting for George Martin, who was busy with another artist. “I was surprised and hurt,” Martin admitted. “It was just Paul being Paul.”

The real-life Melanie Coe ended up going back home to her mom and dad after three weeks; she was pregnant and had an abortion. But the girl in the song represented all the teenagers who were running away from their conventional lives in the Sixties. In April 1967, McCartney visited Brian Wilson in L.A. to preview Sgt. Pepper, playing “She’s Leaving Home” on the piano for him and his wife. “We both just cried,” Wilson said. “It was beautiful.”

Appears On: Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

81

‘Hey Bulldog’

the beatles 100 greatest songs
RB/Redferns

Main Writer: Lennon
Recorded: February 11, 1968
Released: January 13, 1969
Not released as a single

What could have been a novelty song turned into one of the Beatles’ heaviest pieces of music. Since they were being filmed at Abbey Road for a promotional video for their single “Lady Madonna,” the band decided they may as well record the extra song needed for the Yellow Submarine soundtrack. “Paul said we should do a real song in the studio,” Lennon said. “Could I whip one off? I had a few words at home, so I brought them in.” A few days earlier, McCartney had played drums on a Paul Jones rocker called “The Dog Presides,” which had featured barking sound effects. During the Beatles’ session, McCartney and Lennon ended up woofing and howling, and the title became “Hey Bulldog.” For all its playfulness, “Hey Bulldog” was a biting, aggressive piece of music: Harrison ran his guitar through a fuzz box and then turned up his amp extra loud, resulting in a particularly ferocious solo. “I helped [Lennon] finish it off in the studio,” McCartney said of the song, “but it’s mainly his vibe.” Lennon himself called it “a good-sounding record that means nothing.”

Appears On: Yellow Submarine

The Beatles – Mother Nature’s Son (Rehearsal)

Published on Apr 16, 2013

Title: Mother Nature’s Son – Rehearsal taped June 11,1968.Paul recorded 32 takes of Blackbird on this day and in between takes he ran through Mother Nature’s Son,a song he had written in India and demoed at George Harrison’s Esher estate “Kinfauns” in May.Listen to John’s suggestion about a brass band being used for the song.Paul would record the song on Aug 9 with the brass being added on the 20th.

80

‘Mother Nature’s Son’

the beatles 100 greatest songs
Cummings Archives/Redferns

Main Writer: McCartney
Recorded: August 9 and 20, 1968
Released: November 25, 1968
Not released as a single

After attending a lecture by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Lennon and McCartney each wrote songs about the experience. Lennon’s was “Child of Nature,” which he demo’d, but didn’t record, for the White Album (it was later rewritten as “Jealous Guy”). McCartney’s was this acoustic piece, which owed a debt to Nat “King” Cole’s “Nature Boy,” and to his relationship with Linda Eastman: “When Linda and I got together,” he said, “we discovered we had this deep love of nature in common.”

By the time McCartney recorded the song, the White Album sessions had nearly become simultaneous solo projects — “Mother Nature’s Son” is one of four songs on the album that McCartney recorded by himself. He did the basic track on August 9th, after the rest of the band had gone home for the night, and returned to it 11 days later, playing drums (set up in a corridor to alter their sound) and overseeing a brass ensemble. When Lennon — who hated it whenever McCartney recorded without the rest of the band — walked in with Starr, “you could have cut the atmosphere with a knife,” recalled engineer Ken Scott.

Appears On: The Beatles

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In the very fine article, The Sgt. Pepper’s Album Cover: Faces in the Crowd,” by  on  March 29, 2015, she made this observation concerning the picking of  STUART SUTCLIFFE to be on the cover:

The original “fifth Beatle,” Sutcliffe was a talented painter who played bass for the group before leaving to pursue a promising career as a visual artist—one that came to a premature end when he died from a brain hemorrhage in 1962 at age 21. Lennon, his closest friend in the band, asked to include him on the Sgt. Pepper’s cover. Yoko Ono has said that hardly a day went by when her husband did not mention Sutcliffe’s name.

sgt-pepper

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stu-sutcliffe.jpg

Stuart Sutcliffe is the featured artist today

People In Sgt. Pepper’s cover

Monday, May 23, 2011

About the Cover of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

The old Beatles are at left side, standing graveside, mourning their death.  Legend is this signified when the Beatles realized they could no longer tour and play live dates.  The crowds were too large, the noise was too great even for them to hear themselves playing, and the crazies and stalkers were rearing up.

So from this point forward, the new Beatles – shown front and center in their Sgt. Peppers regalia – became a studio band, safely nestled away in the Abbey Road studios.

Another reason for their departure from the stage.  By 1967, the Beatles were creating music that was so electronically complex for the time it could not be reproduced live using the technology of the day.

This was the advent of post-production effects.  For example, the rising orchestra-glissando and final chord for “Day In The Life” was produced by all 4 Beatles and George Martin banging on 3 pianos simultaneously. As the sound diminished, the recording engineer boosted to faders. The resulting note lasts 42 seconds, and the studio air conditioners can be heard toward the end as the faders were pushed to the limit to record it.

The rising orchestra-glissando and the thundering sound are reminiscent of “Entry of the Gods into Valhalla” from Richard Wagner’s opera “Das Rheingold,” where after the rising glissando, Thor beats with his hammer. George Martin said in his 1979 bookAll You Need is Ears that the glissando was Lennon’s idea. After Lennon’s death, Martin seems to have changed his mind. In his 1995 book Summer of Love: The Making of Sgt. Pepper, he states that the rising orchestra-glissando was McCartney’s idea. (thanks to Johan Cavalli, who is a music historian in Stockholm).

This album cover was created by Jann Haworth and Peter Blake. They won the Grammy Award for Best Album Cover, Graphic Arts in 1968 for their work on this cover.

The celebrities and items featured on the front cover are (by row, left to right):

Top row:

Sri Yukteswar Giri (Hindu guru)
Aleister Crowley (occultist)
Mae West (actress)
Lenny Bruce (comedian)
Karlheinz Stockhausen (composer)
W. C. Fields (comedian/actor)
Carl Gustav Jung (psychiatrist)
Edgar Allan Poe (writer)
Fred Astaire (actor/dancer)
Richard Merkin (artist)
The Vargas Girl (by artist Alberto Vargas)
Huntz Hall (actor)
Simon Rodia (designer and builder of the Watts Towers)
Bob Dylan (singer/songwriter)

Second row:

Aubrey Beardsley (illustrator)
Sir Robert Peel (19th century British Prime Minister)
Aldous Huxley (writer)
Dylan Thomas (poet)
Terry Southern (writer)
Dion (singer)
Tony Curtis (actor)
Wallace Berman (artist)
Tommy Handley (comedian)
Marilyn Monroe (actress)
William S. Burroughs (writer)
Sri Mahavatar Babaji (Hindu guru)
Stan Laurel (actor/comedian)
Richard Lindner (artist)
Oliver Hardy (actor/comedian)
Karl Marx (political philosopher)
H. G. Wells (writer)
Sri Paramahansa Yogananda (Hindu guru)
Sigmund Freud (psychiatrist) – barely visible below Bob Dylan
Anonymous (hairdresser’s wax dummy)

Third row:

Stuart Sutcliffe (artist/former Beatle)
Anonymous (hairdresser’s wax dummy)
Max Miller (comedian)
A “Petty Girl” (by artist George Petty)
Marlon Brando (actor)
Tom Mix (actor)
Oscar Wilde (writer)
Tyrone Power (actor)
Larry Bell (artist)
Dr. David Livingstone (missionary/explorer)
Johnny Weissmuller (Olympic swimmer/Tarzan actor)
Stephen Crane (writer) – barely visible between Issy Bonn’s head and raised arm
Issy Bonn (comedian)
George Bernard Shaw (playwright)
H. C. Westermann (sculptor)
Albert Stubbins (football player)
Sri Lahiri Mahasaya (guru)
Lewis Carroll (writer)
T. E. Lawrence (“Lawrence of Arabia”)

Front row:

Wax model of Sonny Liston (boxer)
A “Petty Girl” (by George Petty)
Wax model of George Harrison
Wax model of John Lennon
Shirley Temple (child actress) – barely visible, first of three appearances on the cover
Wax model of Ringo Starr
Wax model of Paul McCartney
Albert Einstein (physicist) – largely obscured
John Lennon holding a Wagner Tuba
Ringo Starr holding a trumpet
Paul McCartney holding a Cor Anglais
George Harrison holding a flute
Bobby Breen (singer)
Marlene Dietrich (actress/singer)
An American legionnaire[1]
Diana Dors (actress)
Shirley Temple (child actress) – second appearance on the cover

Other objects within the group include:

Cloth grandmother-figure by Jann Haworth
Cloth doll by Haworth of Shirley Temple wearing a sweater that reads “Welcome The Rolling Stones”
A ceramic Mexican craft known as a Tree of Life from Metepec
A 9-inch Sony television set[2] – the receipt is owned by a curator of a museum dedicated to The Beatles in Japan.
A stone figure of a girl
Another stone figure
A statue brought over from John Lennon’s house
A trophy
A doll of the Hindu goddess Lakshmi
A drum skin, designed by fairground artist Joe Ephgrave
A hookah (water pipe)
A velvet snake
A Fukusuke, Japanese china figure
A stone figure of Snow White
A garden gnome
A euphonium/baritone horn

Paul and Stuart below

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Frozen into myth by an early death in 1962, the artist and musician Stuart Sutcliffe is best known for his brief membership, between January and December 1960, of an early line-up of The Beatles. Sutcliffe was persuaded by John Lennon to buy a bass guitar with the money he received from the Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool, for the gallery’s purchase of his The Summer Painting (1959) in the John Moores Painting Exhibition that year. He then played with The Beatles (as the group were changing their name to successive variations of ‘Silver Beatles’) on their tour of Scotland, and during their first residency in Hamburg. In 1961, having met and fallen in love with the photographer Astrid Kirchherr, he enrolled at Hamburg State School of Art, as a master’s student in the class of visiting professor Eduardo Paolozzi. Showing exceptional promise as a painter, Sutcliffe died the following year of a brain haemorrhage, aged 21.

Since his death, and encouraged by the superior but romantically stylized biographical feature film Backbeat (1994), the assessment of Sutcliffe’s work as a visual artist has perhaps inevitably been contextualized almost solely by its position within the early career of the Beatles. The importance of this latest retrospective of his work, entitled ‘Stuart Sutcliffe: Retrospective’, curated by Colin Fallows and Matthew H. Clough, and of the substantial accompanying publication, lies in their scholarly review of his art on a strictly art-historical basis. A concise and revealingly chosen selection of work, from charmingly vivacious juvenilia made when Sutcliffe was still a pupil at Prescot Grammar School, through to the last big ‘black’ paintings that he was working on at the time of his death, makes a potent and persuasive case for a major reassessment of the artist’s legacy.

As detailed by Bryan Biggs in his catalogue essay ‘A Link in Something Larger’ (2008), the influences on the development of Sutcliffe’s art comprise a largely northern European nexus of ideas and examples – notably those of Nicholas de Staël and Pierre Soulages – as filtered first through the teaching culture at Liverpool Regional College of Art where Sutcliffe was enrolled. His interest, progressive for an art student of that period, lay in exploring the divide between abstraction and figuration. Biggs quotes artist and poet Adrian Henri’s summary of Sutcliffe’s painting style, from a review written in 1964: ‘a synthesis of Parisian abstraction [and] the dynamic colour field freedom of the New York School’.

The first room of this retrospective is devoted to establishing the artist’s earliest work, and his initial experience, from 1956, of art education at Liverpool Regional College of Art. These pieces include some lively early successes: a gothic graveyard scene made in a grammar-school exercise book; an ink and watercolour illustration to the children’s rhyme ‘Georgie Porgie’, in which a superbly indignant little girl scowls furiously at Georgie’s insolent embrace. Also included are irresistibly evocative ephemera of student life – such as membership cards to city jazz clubs – from the collection of Sutcliffe and Lennon’s flatmate, Rod Murray.

As recounted by the work exhibited in the second gallery, the shift in creative temperament from charming pastiche to emotional urgency is immediately apparent in Sutcliffe’s swiftly maturing and enquiring painting style. He moves rapidly through painting in the British ‘kitchen sink’ realist style of the mid-1950s, to engage instead with a temperament that Biggs astutely identifies as drawn towards the freedoms associated with artists connected to Art Informel – Wols, Henri Michaux and Jean Fautrier. Sutcliffe’s later paintings in oil on canvas are intently worked and thick with paint, in deft and fluid smears and dabs. There is a gathering intensity in the work that instantly declares itself – a searching through styles for a personal style, in which the process of investigation ultimately defines the emotional core of the work. One can also see the faint imprint of a more specifically British sensibility – of the work of Alan Davie, for example, William Turnbull or Patrick Heron. There is a complete absence, however, of Pop art influence; the temper of the work is entirely painterly, reaching for inner response as opposed to outer ‘cool’. Working with increasing assurance, finding his own style within intense, intuitive mark making, Sutcliffe’s media ranged from paintings in oil on canvas and monotype on collage, through to lithography and oil and collage on paper.

Three ‘black’ paintings, hung side by side, all Untitled and made during 1961 and 1962, create what feels like the aesthetic centrepiece and biographical destination of this retrospective. All oils on canvas, the surfaces of these paintings possess a near mineralogical density, as though charred matter in roughly tessellating patterns had become encrusted over the red underpainting, traces of which appear to burn through the compositions like glowing embers. In their presence, one felt that had Sutcliffe lived, his future as an artist of note –or perhaps of considerable importance – was already assured.

Michael Bracewell

_______________

________

_____________

Stuart Sutcliffe

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Stuart Sutcliffe
Sutcliffe and Harrison.jpg

Sutcliffe (left) playing with George Harrison
Background information
Birth name Stuart Fergusson Victor Sutcliffe
Born 23 June 1940
Edinburgh, Scotland
Died 10 April 1962 (aged 21)
Hamburg, West Germany
Occupation(s)
  • Poet
  • painter
  • musician
Instruments Bass
Associated acts The Beatles

Stuart Fergusson Victor Sutcliffe (23 June 1940 – 10 April 1962) was a Scottish-born artist and musician best known as the original bassist for the Beatles. Sutcliffe left the band to pursue his career as an artist, having previously attended the Liverpool College of Art. Sutcliffe and John Lennon are credited with inventing the name, “Beetles”, as they both liked Buddy Holly‘s band, the Crickets. The band used this name for a while until Lennon decided to change the name to “the Beatles”, from the word Beat. As a member of the group when it was a five-piece band, Sutcliffe is one of several people sometimes referred to as the Fifth Beatle.

When the Beatles played in Hamburg, he met photographer Astrid Kirchherr, to whom he was later engaged. After leaving the Beatles, he enrolled in the Hamburg College of Art, studying under future pop artist,Eduardo Paolozzi, who later wrote a report stating that Sutcliffe was one of his best students. Sutcliffe earned other praise for his paintings, which mostly explored a style related to abstract expressionism.

While studying in Germany, Sutcliffe began experiencing severe headaches and acute sensitivity to light. In the first days of April 1962, he collapsed in the middle of an art class after complaining of head pains. German doctors performed various checks, but were unable to determine the exact cause of his headaches. On 10 April 1962, he was taken to hospital, but died in the ambulance on the way. The cause of death was later revealed to have been an aneurysm in his brain’s right hemisphere.

Early years[edit]

Sutcliffe’s father, Charles Sutcliffe (1905 – 18 March 1966), was a senior civil servant, who moved to Liverpool to help with wartime work in 1943, and then signed on as a ship’s engineer, and so was often at sea during his son’s early years. His mother, Millie, was a schoolteacher at an infants’ school.[1] Sutcliffe had two younger sisters, Pauline and Joyce.[2][3]

Sutcliffe was born at the Simpson Memorial Maternity Pavilion Hospital in Edinburgh, Scotland,[4] and after his family moved south,[5] he was brought up at 37 Aigburth Drive in Liverpool.[6] He attended Park View Primary School, Huyton (1946–1950), andPrescot Grammar School (1950–1956).[7][8] When Sutcliffe’s father did return home on leave, he invited his son and art college classmate, Rod Murray (also Sutcliffe’s roommate and best friend), for a “real good booze-up“, slipping £10 into Sutcliffe’s pocket before disappearing for another six months.[7] The Beatles’ biographer, Philip Norman, wrote that Charles Sutcliffe was a heavy drinker and physically cruel to his wife, which the young Sutcliffe had witnessed.[1]

During his first year at the Liverpool College of Art, Sutcliffe worked as a bin man on the Liverpool Corporation’s waste collection trucks.[9] Lennon was introduced to Sutcliffe by Bill Harry, a mutual friend, when all three were studying at the Liverpool College of Art. According to Lennon, Sutcliffe had a “marvellous art portfolio” and was a very talented painter who was one of the “stars” of the school.[7][10] He helped Lennon to improve his artistic skills, and with others, worked with him when Lennon had to submit work for exams.[11] Sutcliffe shared a flat with Murray at 9 Percy Street, Liverpool, before being evicted and moving to Hillary Mansions at 3 Gambier Terrace, where another art student lived, Margaret Chapman, who competed with Sutcliffe to be the best painter in class.[12] The flat was opposite the new Anglican cathedral in the rundown area of Liverpool 8, with bare lightbulbs and a mattress on the floor in the corner. Lennon moved in with Sutcliffe in early 1960.[13][14] (Paul McCartney later admitted that he was jealous of Sutcliffe’s relationship with Lennon, as he had to take a “back seat” to Sutcliffe).[15] Sutcliffe and his flatmates painted the rooms yellow and black, which their landlady did not appreciate. On another occasion the tenants, needing to keep warm, burned the flat’s furniture.[16]

After talking to Sutcliffe one night at the Casbah Coffee Club (owned by Pete Best‘s mother, Mona Best), Lennon and McCartney persuaded Sutcliffe to buy a Höfner President 500/5 model bass guitar on hire-purchase from Frank Hessey’s Music Shop.[9][17][18] Sutcliffe was versed in music: he had sung in the local church choir in Huyton, his mother had insisted on piano lessons for him since the age of nine, he had played bugle in the Air Training Corps, and his father had taught him some chords on the guitar.[19][20] In May 1960, Sutcliffe joined Lennon, McCartney, and George Harrison (then known as “the Silver Beatles“).[21][22] Sutcliffe’s fingers would often blister during long rehearsals, as he had never practised long enough for his fingers to become calloused, even though he had previously played acoustic guitar.[23][24] Sutcliffe started acting as a booking agent for the group, and they often used his Gambier Terrace flat as a rehearsal room.[13]

In July 1960, the Sunday newspaper, The People, ran an article entitled “The Beatnik Horror” that featured a photograph taken in the flat below Sutcliffe’s of a teenaged Lennon lying on the floor, with Sutcliffe standing by a window.[25] As they had often visited the Jacaranda club,[26] its owner, Allan Williams, arranged for the photograph to be taken, subsequently taking over from Sutcliffe to book concerts for the group: Lennon, McCartney, Harrison and Sutcliffe.[27] The Beatles’ subsequent name change came during an afternoon in the Renshaw Hall bar when Sutcliffe, Lennon and his girlfriend, Cynthia Powell, thought up names similar to Holly’s band, the Crickets, and came up with Beetles.[28] Lennon later changed the name because he thought it sounded French, suggesting Le Beat or Beat-less.

The Beatles and Hamburg[edit]

Sutcliffe’s playing style was elementary, mostly sticking to root notes of chords.[29] Harry—an art school friend and founder and editor of the Mersey Beat newspaper—complained to Sutcliffe that he should be concentrating on art and not music, as he thought that Sutcliffe was a competent musician whose talents would be better used in the visual arts.[30] While Sutcliffe is often described in Beatles’ biographies as appearing very uncomfortable onstage, and often playing with his back to the audience, their drummer at the time, Best, denies this, recalling Sutcliffe as usually good-natured and “animated” before an audience.[31] When the Beatles auditioned for Larry Parnes at the Wyvern Club, Seel Street, Liverpool, Williams later claimed that Parnes would have taken the group as the backing band for Billy Fury for £10 per week, but as Sutcliffe turned his back to Parnes throughout the audition—because, as Williams believed, Sutcliffe could not play very well—Parnes said that he would only employ the group if they got rid of Sutcliffe. Parnes later denied this, stating his only concern was that the group had no permanent drummer.[32] Klaus Voormann regarded Sutcliffe as a good bass player,[33] although Beatles’ historian Richie Unterberger described Sutcliffe’s bass playing as an “artless thump”.[34]

Sutcliffe’s popularity grew after he began wearing Ray-Ban sunglasses and tight trousers.[35] Sutcliffe’s high spot was singing “Love Me Tender“, which drew more applause than the other Beatles, and increased the friction between him and McCartney. Lennon also started to criticise Sutcliffe, making jokes about Sutcliffe’s size and playing.[36] On 5 December 1960, Harrison was sent back to Britain for being under-age. McCartney and Best were deported for attempted arson at the Bambi Kino, which left Lennon and Sutcliffe in Hamburg.[37][38] Lennon took a train home, but as Sutcliffe had a cold he stayed in Hamburg.[39] Sutcliffe later borrowed money from his girlfriend, Astrid Kirchherr, in order to fly back to Liverpool on Friday, 20 January 1961, although he returned to Hamburg in March 1961, with the other Beatles.[36]

In July 1961, Sutcliffe decided to leave the group to continue painting.[40] After being awarded a postgraduate scholarship,[11] he enrolled at the Hamburg College of Art under the tutelage of Paolozzi.[35] He lent McCartney his bass until the latter could earn enough to buy a specially made smaller left-handed Höfner bass guitar of his own in June 1961, but asked McCartney (who is left-handed) not to change the strings around, so McCartney had to play the guitar upside down.[41] In 1967, a photo of Sutcliffe was among those on the cover of the Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album (extreme left, in front of fellow artist Aubrey Beardsley).[42]

Astrid Kirchherr[edit]

Main article: Astrid Kirchherr

Kirchherr was brought up by her widowed mother, Nielsa Kirchherr, in Eimsbütteler Strasse, in a wealthy part of the Hamburg suburb of Altona.[43] Sutcliffe met Kirchherr in the Kaiserkeller club, where she went to watch the Beatles perform. After a photo session with the group, Kirchherr invited them to her mother’s house for tea and showed them her bedroom; decorated in black, including the furniture, with silver foil on the walls and a large tree branch hanging from the ceiling. Sutcliffe began dating Kirchherr shortly thereafter.[44]

Sutcliffe wrote to friends that he was infatuated with Kirchherr, and asked her German friends which colours, films, books and painters she liked. Best commented that the beginning of their relationship was, “like one of those fairy stories”.[45] Kirchherr and Sutcliffe got engaged in November 1960, and exchanged rings, as is the German custom.[35] Sutcliffe later wrote to his parents that he was engaged to Kirchherr, which they were shocked to learn, as they thought he would give up his career as an artist,[46]although he told Kirchherr that he would like to be an art teacher in London or Germany in the future.[47] After moving into the Kirchherr family’s house, Sutcliffe used to borrow her clothes. He wore her leather pants and jackets, collarless jackets, over-sized shirts and long scarves, and also borrowed a corduroy suit with no lapels that he wore on stage, which prompted Lennon to sarcastically ask if his mother had lent him the suit.[47]

Sutcliffe displayed artistic talent at an early age.[7][48] Helen Anderson (a fellow student), remembered his early works as being very aggressive, with dark, moody colours, which was not the type of painting she expected from such a “quiet student”.[10] One of Sutcliffe’s paintings was shown at the Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool as part of the John Moores exhibition, from November 1959 until January 1960. After the exhibition, Moores bought Sutcliffe’s canvas for £65, which was then equal to 6–7 weeks’ wages for an average working man.[13] The picture Moore bought was called Summer Painting, and Sutcliffe attended a formal dinner to celebrate the exhibition with another art student, Susan Williams.[49] Murray remembered that the painting was painted on a board, not a canvas, and had to be cut into two pieces (because of its size) and hinged. Murray added that only one of the pieces actually got to the exhibition (because they stopped off in a pub to celebrate), but sold nonetheless because Moores bought it for his son.[50]

Sutcliffe had been turned down when he applied to study for an ATD (Art Teachers Diploma) course at the Liverpool Art College,[40] but after meeting Kirchherr, he decided to leave the Beatles and attend the Hamburg College of Art in June 1961, under the tutelage of Paolozzi, who later wrote a report stating that Sutcliffe was one of his best students.[35][51][52] He wrote: “Sutcliffe is very gifted and very intelligent. In the meantime he has become one of my best students.”[5]

Sutcliffe’s few surviving works reveal influence from the British and European abstract artists contemporary with the Abstract Expressionist movement in the United States. His earlier figurative work is reminiscent of the kitchen sink school, particularly of John Bratby, though Sutcliffe was producing abstract work by the end of the 1950s, including The Summer Painting, purchased by Moores.[53] Sutcliffe’s works bear some comparison with those of John Hoyland and Nicolas de Staël, though they are more lyrical (Sutcliffe used the stage name “Stu de Staël” when he was playing with the Beatles on a Scottish tour in spring 1960). His later works are typically untitled, constructed from heavily impastoed slabs of pigment in the manner of de Staël, whom he learned about from Surrey born, art college instructor, Nicky Horsfield, and overlaid with scratched or squeezed linear elements creating enclosed spaces. Hamburg Painting no. 2 was purchased by Liverpool’s Walker Art Gallery and is one of a series entitled “Hamburg” in which the surface and colour changes produced atmospheric energy. European artists (including Paolozzi) were also influencing Sutcliffe at the time.[54] The Walker Art Gallery has other works by Sutcliffe, which are “Self-portrait” (in charcoal) and “The Crucifixion“.[55][56] Lennon later hung a pair of Sutcliffe’s paintings in his house (Kenwood) in Weybridge, and McCartney had a Paolozzi sculpture in his Cavendish Avenue home.[57][58]

Death[edit]

While in Germany, Sutcliffe began experiencing severe headaches and acute sensitivity to light,[59] and Kirchherr stated that some of the headaches left him temporarily blind.[60][61] In 1962, Sutcliffe collapsed in the middle of an art class in Hamburg. Kirchherr’s mother had German doctors perform various checks on him, but they were unable to determine exactly what was causing the headaches. They suggested he go back to Britain and have himself checked into a hospital with better facilities, but Sutcliffe was told there was nothing wrong with him, so he returned to Hamburg. While living at the Kirchherrs’ house his condition got worse, and after collapsing again on 10 April 1962, he was taken to hospital by Kirchherr (who rode with him in the ambulance), but he died before the ambulance reached the hospital.[61] The cause of death was revealed to have been a cerebral haemorrhage, specifically, a ruptured aneurysm[61][62] resulting in “cerebral paralysis due to bleeding into the right ventricleof the brain.”[63]

On 13 April 1962, Kirchherr met the group at Hamburg Airport, telling them that Sutcliffe had died a few days before.[38][62] Sutcliffe’s mother flew to Hamburg with the Beatles’ manager Brian Epstein, and returned to Liverpool with her son’s body.[47]Sutcliffe’s father did not hear of his son’s death for three weeks, as he was sailing to South America, although the family arranged for a padre to tell him when he docked in Buenos Aires.[64] After Sutcliffe’s death, Kirchherr wrote a letter to his mother, apologising for being too ill to attend his funeral in Liverpool and saying how much she and Lennon missed him: “Oh, Mum, he (Lennon) is in a terrible mood now, he just can’t believe that darling Stuart never comes back. [He’s] just crying his eyes out … John is marvellous to me, he says that he knows Stuart so much and he loves him so much that he can understand me.”[65]

The cause of Sutcliffe’s aneurysm is unknown, although it is believed to have been started by an earlier head injury, as he was either kicked in the head, or thrown, head first, against a brick wall during a fight outside Lathom Hall, after a performance in January 1961.[66] According to former manager Allan Williams, Lennon and Best went to Sutcliffe’s aid, fighting off his attackers before dragging him to safety. Sutcliffe sustained a fractured skull in the fight and Lennon’s little finger was broken. [67] Sutcliffe refused medical attention at the time and failed to keep an X-ray appointment at Sefton General Hospital.[68] However, in the comments section to an article in the New York Times, a posting under the name of Sutcliffe’s friend, Mersey Beat editor Bill Harry, claimed that Sutcliffe did not appear at Lathom Hall at the time Williams said the attack had happened. According to Harry, Sutcliffe’s mother told him that he had fallen down the steps from the attic room in Kirchherr’s house, and that Neilsa Kirchherr, Astrid’s mother, confirmed this.[69] Sutcliffe’s sister Pauline later alleged that his death had been caused by Lennon; she claimed that Stuart had told her that he and Lennon were walking one day when Lennon attacked him unprovoked, and then ran away. She gave Paul McCartney as the only witness, although McCartney has denied this, saying “It’s possible Stuart and John had a fight in a drunken moment, but I don’t remember anything that stands out.”[70]

Although Lennon did not attend or send flowers to Sutcliffe’s funeral, his second wife, Yoko Ono, remembered that Lennon mentioned Sutcliffe’s name very often, saying that he was “[My] alter ego … a spirit in his world … a guiding force”.[2]

Anthology series[edit]

Main article: The Beatles Anthology

The Beatles’ compilation album, Anthology 1, consisting mostly of previously unreleased recordings from the group’s early years, was released in 1995. Sutcliffe is pictured on the front covers of both Anthology 1 and Anthology 3, in the top right corner. He is featured playing bass with the Beatles on three songs they recorded in 1960: “Hallelujah, I Love Her So“, “You’ll Be Mine“, “Cayenne” and “My Bonnie“.[71]

Milton Friedman – Nobel Prize Biographical

Milton Friedman – Biographical

I was born July 31, 1912, in Brooklyn, N.Y., the fourth and last child and first son of Sarah Ethel (Landau) and Jeno Saul Friedman. My parents were born in Carpatho-Ruthenia (then a province of Austria-Hungary; later, part of inter-war Czechoslovakia, and, currently, of the Soviet Union). They emigrated to the U.S. in their teens, meeting in New York. When I was a year old, my parents moved to Rahway, N.J., a small town about 20 miles from New York City. There, my mother ran a small retail “dry goods” store, while my father engaged in a succession of mostly unsuccessful “jobbing” ventures. The family income was small and highly uncertain; financial crisis was a constant companion. Yet there was always enough to eat, and the family atmosphere was warm and supportive.

Along with my sisters, I attended public elementary and secondary schools, graduating from Rahway High School in 1928, just before my 16th birthday. My father died during my senior year in high school, leaving my mother plus two older sisters to support the family. Nonetheless, it was taken for granted that I would attend college, though, also, that I would have to finance myself.

I was awarded a competitive scholarship to Rutgers University (then a relatively small and predominantly private university receiving limited financial assistance from the State of New Jersey, mostly in the form of such scholarship awards). I was graduated from Rutgers in 1932, financing the rest of my college expenses by the usual mixture of waiting on tables, clerking in a retail store, occasional entrepreneurial ventures, and summer earnings. Initially, I specialized in mathematics, intending to become an actuary, and went so far as to take actuarial examinations, passing several but also failing several. Shortly, however, I became interested in economics, and eventually ended with the equivalent of a major in both fields.

In economics, I had the good fortune to be exposed to two remarkable men: Arthur F. Burns, then teaching at Rutgers while completing his doctoral dissertation for Columbia; and Homer Jones, teaching between spells of graduate work at the University of Chicago. Arthur Burns shaped my understanding of economic research, introduced me to the highest scientific standards, and became a guiding influence on my subsequent career. Homer Jones introduced me to rigorous economic theory, made economics exciting and relevant, and encouraged me to go on to graduate work. On his recommendation, the Chicago Economics Department offered me a tuition scholarship. As it happened, I was also offered a scholarship by Brown University in Applied Mathematics, but, by that time, I had definitely transferred my primary allegiance to economics. Arthur Burns and Homer Jones remain today among my closest and most valued friends.

Though 1932-33, my first year at Chicago, was, financially, my most difficult year; intellectually, it opened new worlds. Jacob Viner, Frank Knight, Henry Schultz, Lloyd Mints, Henry Simons and, equally important, a brilliant group of graduate students from all over the world exposed me to a cosmopolitan and vibrant intellectual atmosphere of a kind that I had never dreamed existed. I have never recovered.

Personally, the most important event of that year was meeting a shy, withdrawn, lovely, and extremely bright fellow economics student, Rose Director. We were married six years later, when our depression fears of where our livelihood would come from had been dissipated, and, in the words of the fairy tale, have lived happily ever after. Rose has been an active partner in all my professional work since that time.

Thanks to Henry Schultz’s friendship with Harold Hotelling, I was offered an attractive fellowship at Columbia for the next year. The year at Columbia widened my horizons still further. Harold Hotelling did for mathematical statistics what Jacob Viner had done for economic theory: revealed it to be an integrated logical whole, not a set of cook-book recipes. He also introduced me to rigorous mathematical economics. Wesley C. Mitchell, John M. Clark and others exposed me to an institutional and empirical approach and a view of economic theory that differed sharply from the Chicago view. Here, too, an exceptional group of fellow students were the most effective teachers.

After the year at Columbia, I returned to Chicago, spending a year as research assistant to Henry Schultz who was then completing his classic, The Theory and Measurement of Demand. Equally important, I formed a lifelong friendship with two fellow students, George J. Stigler and W. Allen Wallis.

Allen went first to New Deal Washington. Largely through his efforts, I followed in the summer of 1935, working at the National Resources Committee on the design of a large consumer budget study then under way. This was one of the two principal components of my later Theory of the Consumption Function.

The other came from my next job – at the National Bureau of Economic Research, where I went in the fall of 1937 to assist Simon Kuznets in his studies of professional income. The end result was our jointly published Incomes from Independent Professional Practice, which also served as my doctoral dissertation at Columbia. That book was finished by 1940, but its publication was delayed until after the war because of controversy among some Bureau directors about our conclusion that the medical profession’s monopoly powers had raised substantially the incomes of physicians relative to that of dentists. More important, scientifically, that book introduced the concepts of permanent and transitory income.

The catalyst in combining my earlier consumption work with the income analysis in professional incomes into the permanent income hypothesis was a series of fireside conversations at our summer cottage in New Hampshire with my wife and two of our friends, Dorothy S. Brady and Margaret Reid, all of whom were at the time working on consumption.

I spent 1941 to 1943 at the U.S. Treasury Department, working on wartime tax policy, and 1943-45 at Columbia University in a group headed by Harold Hotelling and W. Allen Wallis, working as a mathematical statistician on problems of weapon design, military tactics, and metallurgical experiments. My capacity as a mathematical statistician undoubtedly reached its zenith on V. E. Day, 1945.

In 1945, I joined George Stigler at the University of Minnesota, from which he had been on leave. After one year there, I accepted an offer from the University of Chicago to teach economic theory, a position opened up by Jacob Viner’s departure for Princeton. Chicago has been my intellectual home ever since. At about the same time, Arthur Burns, then director of research at the National Bureau, persuaded me to rejoin the Bureau’s staff and take responsibility for their study of the role of money in the business cycle.

The combination of Chicago and the Bureau has been highly productive. At Chicago, I established a “Workshop in Money and Banking”. which has enabled our monetary studies to be a cumulative body of work to which many have contributed, rather than a one-man project. I have been fortunate in its participants, who include, I am proud to say, a large fraction of all the leading contributors to the revival in monetary studies that has been such a striking development in our science in the past two decades. At the Bureau, I was supported by Anna J. Schwartz, who brought an economic historian’s skill, and an incredible capacity for painstaking attention to detail, to supplement my theoretical propensities. Our work on monetary history and statistics has been enriched and supplemented by both the empirical studies and the theoretical developments that have grown out of the Chicago Workshop.

In the fall of 1950, I spent a quarter in Paris as a consultant to the U.S. governmental agency administering the Marshall Plan. My major assignment was to study the Schuman Plan, the precursor of the common market. This was the origin of my interest in floating exchange rates, since I concluded that a common market would inevitably founder without floating exchange rates. My essay, The Case for Flexible Exchange Rates, was one product.

During the academic year 1953-54, I was a Fulbright Visiting Professor at Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge University. Because my liberal policy views were “extreme” by any Cambridge standards, I was acceptable to, and able greatly to profit from, both groups into which Cambridge economics was tragically and very deeply divided: D.H. Robertson and the “anti-Keynesians”; Joan Robinson, Richard Kahn and the Keynesian majority.

Beginning in the early 1960s, I was increasingly drawn into the public arena, serving in 1964 as an economic adviser to Senator Goldwater in his unsuccessful quest for the presidency, and, in 1968, as one of a committee of economic advisers during Richard Nixon’s successful quest. In 1966, I began to write a triweekly column on current affairs for Newsweek magazine, alternating with Paul Samuelson and Henry Wallich. However, these public activities have remained a minor avocation – I have consistently refused offers of full-time positions in Washington. My primary interest continues to be my scientific work.

In 1977, I retire from active teaching at the University of Chicago, though retaining a link with the Department and its research activities. Thereafter, I shall continue to spend spring and summer months at our second home in Vermont, where I have ready access to the library at Dartmouth College – and autumn and winter months as a Senior Research Fellow at the Hoover lnstitution of Stanford University.

From Nobel Lectures, Economics 1969-1980, Editor Assar Lindbeck, World Scientific Publishing Co., Singapore, 1992

This autobiography/biography was written at the time of the award and first published in the book series Les Prix Nobel. It was later edited and republished in Nobel Lectures. To cite this document, always state the source as shown above.

Copyright © The Nobel Foundation 1976

 

Addendum, May 2005

In 1977, when I reached the age of 65, I retired from teaching at the University of Chicago. At the invitation of Glenn Campbell, Director of the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, I shifted my scholarly work to Hoover where I remain a Senior Research Fellow. We moved to San Francisco, purchasing an apartment in a high-rise apartment building in which we still reside. The transition of my scholarly activities from Chicago to California was greatly eased by the willingness of Gloria Valentine, my assistant at Chicago, to accompany us west. She remains my indispensable assistant.

Hoover has provided excellent facilities for scholarly work. It enabled me to remain productive and an active member of a lively scholarly community.

Initially we continued to spend spring and summer quarters at Capitaf, our second home in Vermont. However, we soon came to appreciate the inconvenience of maintaining homes a continent apart and began to look in California for a replacement for Capitaf. In 1979, we purchased a house on the ocean in Sea Ranch, a lovely community 110 miles north of San Francisco. In 1981, we disposed of Capitaf and began to spend about half the year at Sea Ranch at intervals of a week or so, spread throughout the year, rather than in one solid block. It proved a fine locale for scholarly work. The Internet plus an assistant at Hoover more than made up for the absence of a library near at hand.

After more than two wonderful decades at Sea Ranch, we sold our house to simplify our lives. We now have one home, our apartment in San Francisco.

To return to the 1970s, not long after we arrived in California, Bob Chitester persuaded us to join him in producing a major television program presenting my economic and social philosophy. The resulting effort, spread over three years, proved the most exciting adventure of our lives. The end result was Free to Choose, ten one-hour programs, each consisting of a half-hour documentary and a half-hour discussion. The first of the ten programs appeared on PBS (Public Broadcasting System) in January 1980. Since then, the series has been shown in many foreign countries.

When we agreed to undertake the project, little did Rose and I realize what was involved in producing a major TV series. As a first step, I gave a series of fifteen lectures over a period of nine months at a wide variety of locations. The lectures and question-and-answer sessions were all videotaped to provide the producers with a basis for planning the programs.

The filming began in March 1978 and continued for the next eight months at locations in the United States and around the world, including Hong Kong, Japan, India, Greece, Germany, and the United Kingdom – in the process generating more than six miles of video and audiotape.

Three months after the end of filming, we returned to London to view the documentaries that Michael Latham, our wonderful producer, and his associates had created from that tape and to dub the voice-overs. Another six months passed before we gathered again in Chicago where we filmed the discussion sessions – one of the most stressful weeks I have ever experienced.

One distinguishing feature of the series was that there was no written script. I talked extemporaneously from notes. When we returned to Capitaf from London with the transcripts of the final documentaries, we set to work to convert them to a book to appear simultaneously with the TV program. The book, Free to Choose (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1980) was the bestseller nonfiction book of 1980 and continues to sell well. It has been translated into more than fourteen foreign languages.

As Rose wrote in our memoirs, “As we look back at the events chronicled in this chapter, it all seems like something of a fairy tale. Who would have dreamed that after retiring from teaching, Milton would be able to preach the doctrine of human freedom to many millions of people in countries around the globe through television, millions more through our book based on the television program, and countless others through videocassettes” (p. 503).

Monetary Trends in the United States and the United Kingdom, published in 1982, was the final major product of a collaboration with Anna J. Schwartz under the auspices of the National Bureau of Economic Research that lasted more than three decades. Money Mischief (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1992) collects assorted pieces of monetary history, some of which I had published elsewhere, some of which appear first in this book.

I have continued to be active in public policy since 1977. I continued my tri-weekly column in Newsweek until it was terminated in 1983. Since then, I have published numerous op-eds in major newspapers. I served as an unofficial adviser to Ronald Reagan during his candidacy for the presidency in 1980, and as a member of the President’s Economic Policy Advisory Board during his presidency. In 1988, President Reagan awarded me the Presidential Medal of Freedom and in the same year I was awarded the National Medal of Science.

We have traveled extensively since 1977, including a trip through Eastern Europe in 1990, where we filmed a documentary on former Soviet satellites. The documentary was included in a shortened reissue of Free to Choose.

Perhaps the most notable foreign travel consisted of three trips to China: one in 1980 when I gave a series of lectures under the auspices of the Chinese government; one in 1988 when I attended a conference in Shanghai on Chinese economic development and had a fascinating session in Beijing with Zhao Ziyang, at the time, the General Secretary of the Communist Party, deposed a few months later for his unwillingness to approve the use of force on Tiananmen Square; and one in 1993 when I traveled with a group of Chinese friends from Hong Kong throughout the country. The three visits covered a period of revolutionary economic growth and development, the first stage of a shift from an authoritarian, centrally planned economy to a largely free market economy.

Ever since the 1950s, Rose and I have been interested in the promotion of parental choice in schooling through the use of vouchers. Finally, in 1996, when it became clear that our personal involvement would have to be limited, we established a foundation, The Milton and Rose D. Friedman Foundation devoted to promoting parental choice in schooling. We were fortunate in being able to persuade Gordon St. Angelo to serve as president. He has done an outstanding job. Progress toward our objective of universal vouchers has been distressingly slow, but there has been progress. The pace of progress shows every sign of speeding up, and our foundation has made a significant contribution to that progress.

In 1998, the University of Chicago Press published our memoirs, Milton and Rose D. Friedman, Two Lucky People.

 

Milton Friedman died on November 16, 2006.

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Milton Friedman’s Chicago Boys started the Chilean Miracle and it is still helping ordinary people today!!!

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Milton Friedman and Chile an update

Milton Friedman was a great economist and a fine speaker. ___________________ I have written before about Milton Friedman’s influence on the economy of Chile. Now I saw this fine article below from http://www.heritage.org  and below that article I have included an article from the Wall Street Journal that talks about Milton Friedman’s influence on Chile. I […]

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Milton Friedman admired Margaret Thatcher

RARE Friedman Footage – On Keys to Reagan and Thatcher’s Success Margaret Thatcher and Milton Friedman were two of my heroes. Milton Friedman on How Francois Mitterrand (and Failed Lefty Economics) Helped Re-elect Margaret Thatcher Matt Welch|Apr. 10, 2013 9:37 am Yesterday I wrote a column about how Margaret Thatcher liberated Western Europe from the […]

Milton Friedman had a solution to today’s welfare mentality!!!

  I have written about the tremendous increase in the food stamp program the last 9 years before and that means that both President Obama and Bush were guilty of not trying to slow down it’s growth. Furthermore, Republicans have been some of the biggest supporters of the food stamp program. Milton Friedman had a […]

WOODY WEDNESDAY Woody Allen: The Stand-Up Years 1964-1968 (Part 7)

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Woody Allen Stand Up Comic 1964 1968 20 Bullet In My Breast Pocket

Woody Allen riffs on his early comedy career in ‘The Stand Up Years’ — exclusive

Long before he morphed into one of the most celebrated American filmmakers in history, Woody Allen got his first taste of fame as a stand-up comedian working in the clubs in New York’s Greenwich Village in the 1960s. Those formative experiences are captured on the forthcoming The Stand Up Years, a two-disc set that captures some of Allen’s finest jokes and onstage moments.

It’s not only an incredible time capsule of top-shelf Allen humor, but the seeds of his approach to film also lie in his riffs on his youth, advertising, selling out, and Hollywood. A bunch of the material hasn’t been heard in decades, and there’s also some great bonus material—including the track below, which finds Allen reflecting on his early career and riffing on how loyal his longtime managers Jack Rollins and Charles Joffe were.

Woody Allen’s The Stand Up Years arrives in stores on Jan. 13. You can currently pre-order it at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and iTunes. A pre-order will get you an instant download of a track from the album. It’s an absolute must for both completist Allen fans and anybody who appreciates the art of stand-up.

 

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Woody Allen Stand Up Comic 1964 1968 17 Pets

I have spent alot of time talking about Woody Allen films on this blog and looking at his worldview. He has a hopelessmeaningless, nihilistic worldview that believes we are going to turn to dust and there is no afterlife. Even though he has this view he has taken the opportunity to look at the weaknesses of his own secular view. I salute him for doing that. That is why I have returned to his work over and over and presented my own Christian worldview as an alternative.

My interest in Woody Allen is so great that I have a “Woody Wednesday” on my blog www.thedailyhatch.org every week. Also I have done over 30 posts on the historical characters mentioned in his film “Midnight in Paris.” (Salvador DaliErnest Hemingway,T.S.Elliot,  Cole Porter,Paul Gauguin,  Luis Bunuel, and Pablo Picassowere just a few of the characters.)

Woody Allen – “The New Comic” from The Stand-Up Years

Published on Dec 4, 2014

Woody Allen – “The Stand-Up Years” Available January 13, 2015. Pre-order on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/The-Stand-Up-Ye…

-INCLUDES ALL THREE LIVE STAND-UP ALBUMS RECORDED BETWEEN 1964-1968
-REMASTERED AND AVAILABLE ON CD AND DIGITALLY
-BONUS MATERIAL INCLUDES: AUDIENCE Q&A AND OVER 20 MINUTES OF AUDIO EXCERPTS FROM WOODY ALLEN: A DOCUMENTARY

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WOODY WEDNESDAY Woody Allen’s past movies and the subject of the Meaning of Life examined by Kyle Turner

____ Woody Allen’s past movies and the subject of the Meaning of Life examined!!! Out of the Past: Woody Allen, Nostalgia, the Meaning of Life, and Radio Days Kyle Turner Jul 25, 2014 Film, Twilight Time 1 Comment “I firmly believe, and I don’t say this as a criticism, that life is meaningless.” – Woody […]

WOODY WEDNESDAY Woody Allen Should Have Quoted Pascal: “Magic in the Moonlight” January 7, 2015 by Roger E. Olson 9 Comments

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Woody Allen to make first TV series for Amazon Prime

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Woody Allen: “the whole thing is tragic” July 20, 2012

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WOODY WEDNESDAY Dr. Jack Graham Challenges Agnostic Woody Allen’s ‘Hopeless State of Mind’ BY NICOLA MENZIE , CHRISTIAN POST REPORTER August 23, 2013|4:51 pm

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WOODY WEDNESDAY Woody Allen Should Have Quoted Pascal: “Magic in the Moonlight” January 7, 2015 by Roger E. Olson 9 Comments

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WOODY WEDNESDAY Woody Allen‘s latest film finally has a release date and a studio. Irrational Man will be distributed by Sony Pictures Classics,

_______ Woody Allen’s New Film Is Called ‘Irrational Man’ Posted on Friday, January 30th, 2015 by Angie Han 85 SHARES TwitterFacebook Woody Allen‘s latest film finally has a release date and a studio. Irrational Man will be distributed by Sony Pictures Classics, as were Allen’s last six films.Emma Stone, Joaquin Phoenix, Parker Posey, and Jamie […]

 

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February 13, 2013 1:07PM Obama’s Minimum Wage Plan By Chris Edwards

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February 13, 2013 1:07PM

Obama’s Minimum Wage Plan

Economic research has only a tenuous relationship to economic policymaking in Washington. President Obama’s new proposal to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $9.00 is a case in point. It would bad for workers and the economy, but the administration seems to be ignoring the large body of theory and evidence on the issue.

Labor economist Mark Wilson discusses the economics of the minimum wage in an essay on Downsizing Government. Here are a few highlights:

There is no free lunch when the government mandates a minimum wage. If the government requires that certain workers be paid higher wages, then businesses make adjustments to pay for the added costs, such as reducing hiring, cutting employee work hours, reducing benefits, and charging higher prices.

The main finding of economic theory and empirical research over the past 70 years is that minimum wage increases tend to reduce employment. The higher the minimum wage relative to competitive-market wage levels, the greater the employment loss that occurs. While minimum wages ostensibly aim to improve the economic well-being of the working poor, the disemployment effects of a minimum wages have been found to fall disproportionately on the least skilled and on the most disadvantaged individuals, including the disabled, youth, lower-skilled workers, immigrants, and ethnic minorities.

Nobel laureate economist Milton Friedman observed: ‘The real tragedy of minimum wage laws is that they are supported by well-meaning groups who want to reduce poverty. But the people who are hurt most by higher minimums are the most poverty stricken.’

In the American economy, low wages are usually paid to entry-level workers, but those workers usually do not earn these wages for extended periods of time. Indeed, research indicates that nearly two-thirds of minimum wage workers move above that wage within one year.

While they are often low-paid, entry-level jobs are vitally important for young and low-skill workers because they allow people to establish a track record, to learn skills, and to advance over time to a better-paying job. Thus, in trying to fix a perceived problem with minimum wage laws, policymakers cause collateral damage by reducing the number of entry-level jobs.

As Milton Friedman noted, ‘The minimum wage law is most properly described as a law saying employers must discriminate against people who have low skills.’

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RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Part 30 (Dr. Leonard Mlodinow , Professor of Physics, Cal Tech, CAN SCIENCE CONFLICT WITH RELIGIOUS BELIEF AND STILL BOTH BE TRUE? )

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Caltech professor Leonard Mlodinow has coauthored a l book with Stephen Hawking on the creation of the universe.

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On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said:

…Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975

and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them.

Harry Kroto

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Below you have picture of 1996 Chemistry Nobel Prize Winner Dr. Harry Kroto:

__________________________________________________

There are 3 videos in this series and they have statements by 150 academics and scientists and I hope to respond to all of them. Wikipedia notes Leonard Mlodinow  is an American physicist, author and screenwriter.[2]

Mlodinow was born in Chicago, Illinois, of parents who were both Holocaust survivors.[1] His father, who spent more than a year in the Buchenwald concentration camp, had been a leader in the Jewish resistance under Nazi rule in his hometown of Częstochowa, Poland [1] then Generalgouvernement (für die besetzten polnischen Gebiete). As a child, Mlodinow was interested in both mathematics and chemistry, and while in high school was tutored in organic chemistry by a professor from the University of Illinois.

As recounted in his book, Feynman’s Rainbow, his interest turned to physics during a semester he took off from college to spend on a kibbutz in Israel, during which he had little to do at night beside reading The Feynman Lectures on Physics, which was one of the few English books he found in the kibbutz library…Apart from his research and books on popular science, he also co-wrote the screenplay for the 2009 film Beyond the Horizon[3] and has been a screenwriter for television series, including Star Trek: The Next Generation and MacGyver.[1] He co-authored (with Matt Costello) a children’s chapter book series entitled The Kids of Einstein Elementary.

Between 2008 and 2010, Mlodinow worked on a book with Stephen Hawking, entitled The Grand Design.[1] A step beyond Hawking’s other titles, The Grand Design is said to explore both the question of the existence of the universe and the issue of why the laws of physics are what they are.

It is so exciting for me to get a chance to write on Leonard Mlodinow today. As you probably know he has co-authored several books with Stephen Hawking who I have posted about over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over  again. In  the third video below in the 112th clip in this series are his words. I also enjoyed seeing the movie about Stephen Hawking recently and here is the trailer:

50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1)

Another 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 2)

A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)

I grew up at Bellevue Baptist Church under the leadership of our pastor Adrian Rogers and I read many books by the Evangelical Philosopher Francis Schaeffer and have had the opportunity to contact many of the evolutionists or humanistic academics that they have mentioned in their works. Many of these scholars have taken the time to respond back to me in the last 20 years and some of the names  included are  Ernest Mayr (1904-2005), George Wald (1906-1997), Carl Sagan (1934-1996),  Robert Shapiro (1935-2011), Nicolaas Bloembergen (1920-),  Brian Charlesworth (1945-),  Francisco J. Ayala (1934-) Elliott Sober (1948-), Kevin Padian (1951-), Matt Cartmill (1943-) , Milton Fingerman (1928-), John J. Shea (1969-), , Michael A. Crawford (1938-), Paul Kurtz (1925-2012), Sol Gordon (1923-2008), Albert Ellis (1913-2007), Barbara Marie Tabler (1915-1996), Renate Vambery (1916-2005), Archie J. Bahm (1907-1996), Aron S “Gil” Martin ( 1910-1997), Matthew I. Spetter (1921-2012), H. J. Eysenck (1916-1997), Robert L. Erdmann (1929-2006), Mary Morain (1911-1999), Lloyd Morain (1917-2010),  Warren Allen Smith (1921-), Bette Chambers (1930-),  Gordon Stein (1941-1996) , Milton Friedman (1912-2006), John Hospers (1918-2011), Michael Martin (1932-).Harry Kroto (1939-), Marty E. Martin (1928-), Richard Rubenstein (1924-), James Terry McCollum (1936-), Edward O. WIlson (1929-), Lewis Wolpert (1929), Gerald Holton (1922-),  and  Ray T. Cragun (1976-).

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Quote from Leonard Mlodinow taken from the video found above:

I am not one who believes in the Bible. I find it very hard to see how people could believe in the Bible, but on the other hand I am somewhat religious. I go to synagogue sometimes. I am more of what you would call an agnostic, but I see science as being separate and religious belief as being separate, and one doesn’t affect the other.

My simple question is this?

CAN SCIENCE CONFLICT WITH RELIGIOUS BELIEF AND STILL BOTH BE TRUE? 

A long list of great Christian thinkers given by J. Warner Wallace and these great scientists were men of faith and they would have disagreed with the statement by Leonard Mlodinow, “but I see science as being separate and religious belief as being separate, and one doesn’t affect the other.” 

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Are We Irrational?
Have you ever had someone in the culture tell you that ‘people of faith’ are simple minded folks who blindly believe that God exists in spite of overwhelming evidence to the contrary? Secularists often portray Christians as both ‘unreasonable’ and ‘unreasoning’. They simply believe that we have no idea what the evidence demonstrates related to the existence of God. They think we have blind faith, and they think we are comfortable with our blind obedience to the traditions of religion. Well I, for one, have never seen my faith in this way. I was an atheist for thirty five years because I believed that there was sufficient evidence to support naturalism. I will confess to you that I also thought that naturalism was the more reasonable worldview and that naturalists in general were more thoughtful and evidential. I thought that secularists and philosophical naturalists (I was both) were more committed to a rational examination of the evidence.

I found plenty of skepticism amongst naturalists and other historic thinkers who have questioned the reasoning ability of believers. Many well respected writers have challenged the rationality of ‘blind faith’ and (along with it) Christian Theism:

Thomas Jefferson
“Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blind-folded fear”

Anais Nin
“When we blindly adopt a religion, a political system, a literary dogma, we become automatons. We cease to grow.”

Francis Bacon
“Atheism leaves a man to sense, to philosophy, to natural piety, to laws, to reputation; all of which may be guides to an outward moral virtue, even if religion vanished; but religious superstition dismounts all these and erects an absolute monarchy in the minds of men.”

Sir Julian Huxley
“Today the god hypothesis has ceased to be scientifically tenable … and its abandonment often brings a deep sense of relief. Many people assert that this abandonment of the god hypothesis means the abandonment of all religion and all moral sanctions. This is simply not true. But it does mean, once our relief at jettisoning an outdated piece of ideological furniture is over, that we must construct some thing to take its place”

But is this criticism valid? Are these observations true? Are those who believe in the existence of God truly holding on to an “outdated piece of ideological furniture”? Is it possible to be ‘reasonable’ and a theist at the same time? Is faith truly ‘blind’ or is it the result of a rational examination of the evidence? One thing is for sure, the concept of ‘blind faith’ is completely foreign to the Christian Worldview.

A Rational God
The God of the Bible does not call his children to obey blindly. The Bible itself serves as a piece of evidence, the testimony of eyewitnesses who are providing us with reasons to believe. That’s why the scriptures repeatedly call us to have a reasoned belief in Christ, and not to resort to the behavior of unreasoning animals:

Jude 4, 10
For certain persons have crept in unnoticed, those who were long beforehand marked out for this condemnation, ungodly persons who turn the grace of our God into licentiousness and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ…But these men revile the things which they do not understand; and the things which they know by instinct, like unreasoning animals, by these things they are destroyed.

The Bible uses this word for ‘unreasoning’ in a pejorative manner; to be unreasoning is to act like an animal. God clearly wants us to use our heads! In fact, God wants us to examine all the evidence that is at our disposal and to study the things of God with great intensity. When we do this, we truly begin to worship Him with our mind:

Matthew 22:37-38
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and foremost commandment.”

Believe it or not, our God is in the business of providing us with evidence. He wants us to be convinced after we examine the proof. Look at how Jesus dealt with the disciples following His resurrection:

Acts 1:2-3
…until the day when He was taken up, after He had by the Holy Spirit given orders to the apostles whom He had chosen. To these He also presented Himself alive, after His suffering, by many convincing proofs, appearing to them over a period of forty days, and speaking of the things concerning the kingdom of God.

Paul apparently took this high view of evidence very seriously. Just listen to this portion of Paul’s message to the Athenians:

Acts 17:30-31
“Therefore having overlooked the times of ignorance, God is now declaring to men that all everywhere should repent, because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead.”

The earliest of Christians understood the connection between reason, logic and faith, and they did not see these concepts as mutually exclusive. In fact, Paul often used reason to make his case for Christianity and he valued those who would also use reason to investigate the evidence that he offered:

Acts 17:2-3
And according to Paul’s custom, he went to them, and for three Sabbaths reasoned with them from the Scriptures, explaining and giving evidence that the Christ had to suffer and rise again from the dead

Acts 17:10-11
And the brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea; and when they arrived, they went into the synagogue of the Jews. Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily, to see whether these things were so.

As Christians, we are encouraged to examine the evidence and test what we observe and what we have been told:

1 Thessalonians 5:19-21
Do not quench the Spirit; do not despise prophetic utterances. But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good…

1 John 4:1
Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.

In the end, God wants us to be convinced of the truth in such a way as to allow this truth to change our lives. God wants us to be convinced:

Romans 14:5
Let each man be fully convinced in his own mind.

2 Timothy 1:8-12
Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, or of me His prisoner; but join with me in suffering for the gospel according to the power of God, who has saved us, and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was granted us in Christ Jesus from all eternity, but now has been revealed by the appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus, who abolished death, and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel, for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle and a teacher. For this reason I also suffer these things, but I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day.

2 Timothy 3:14
You, however, continue in the things you have learned and become convinced of, knowing from whom you have learned them…

When believers use their minds, investigate the evidence and become convinced, something wonderful happens; they have the courage to defend what they believe using the same logic and reasoning power that assisted them to faith in the first place:

1 Peter 3:15
…but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence…

Over the centuries, Christians in all disciplines of inquiry and discovery have used their reasoning powers to investigate the evidence. Christians are not irrational by nature and many Christians have been world leaders in their use of reason and rationality.

Great Christian Thinkers
While there may be 150 years worth of great atheist thinkers that can be paraded in front of us to justify the possible truth of naturalism and humanism, there are thousands of year’s worth of great Christian scientists and writers and thinkers who have reasoned to just the opposite conclusion. These were rational and reasonable CHRISTIANS who saw no conflict between the rational process of thoughtful examination and their belief in the existence of God. They saw no conflict between the pursuit of science and the pursuit of theology. In fact, they saw the two endeavors as inextricably connected. Let’s take a look at just a few great Christian thinkers throughout history:

John Philoponus (c.490 to c.570)
He theorized about the nature of light and stars and criticized Aristotelian physics

Bede, the Venerable (c.672 to 735)
He wrote two volumes on “Time and its Reckoning” that revealed a new understanding of the “progress wave-like” nature of tides

Pope Silvester II (c.950 to 1003)
He influenced and shaped the teaching of math and astronomy in Christian schools

Hermannus Contractus (1013 to 1054)
He wrote on geometry, mathematics, and the astrolabe (a historical astronomical instrument used by classical astronomers and navigators)

Robert Grosseteste (c.1175 to 1253)
He is considered the founder of scientific thought in Oxford. He wrote books on the mathematical sciences of optics, astronomy and geometry. He believed that experiments should be used in order to verify a theory

Pope John XXI (1215 to 1277)
He wrote the “Thesaurus Pauperum” (a widely used medical text)

Albertus Magnus (c.1193 to 1280)
He was a scientist who may have been the first to isolate arsenic. He wrote “Natural science does not consist in ratifying what others have said, but in seeking the causes of phenomena”

Roger Bacon (c.1214 to 1294)
He contributed in areas of optics, mechanics and geography; he promoted empiricism and was one of the earliest advocates of the modern scientific method. He was also responsible for promoting the concept of the “laws of nature”

Theodoric of Freiberg (c.1250 to c.1310)
He gave the first correct explanation for the rainbow in “De Iride et Radialibus Impressionibus” (or “On the Rainbow”)

Thomas Bradwardine (c.1290 to 1349)
He was called “the Profound Doctor”and his studies lead to important developments in mechanics

Jean Buridan (1300 to 1358)
He developed a theory known as ‘impetus’; an important step toward the modern concept of ‘inertia’

Nicole Oresme (c.1323 to 1382)
He was one of the early founders and promoters of ‘modern sciences’. He made many scientific discoveries, including the discovery of curvature of light through atmospheric refraction

Nicholas of Cusa (1401 to 1464)
He made contributions to the field of mathematics and developed the concepts of the ‘infinitesimal’ and of ‘relative motion’

Otto Brunfels (1488 to 1534)
He was a botanist and his “Herbarum Vivae Icones” was a formative work in the field of botany

Nicolaus Copernicus (1473 to 1543)
He introduced the ‘heliocentric’ world view, discovering hat earth and the solar system planets revolved around the sun

William Turner (c.1508 to 1568)
He is the “father of English botany” and was also an ornithologist

Ignazio Danti (1536 to 1586)
He was a mathematician who wrote about Euclid (an astronomer, and a designer of mechanical devices)

Giordano Bruno (1548 to 1600)
He was an Italian cosmologist who argued that the Earth revolved around the Sun and that other worlds also revolved around other suns

Bartholomaeus Pitiscus (1561 to 1613)
He was a mathematician who may have coined the word trigonometry in the English and French Languages

John Napier (1550 to 1617)
He was a Scottish mathematician renowned for inventing logarithms and his promotion of the use of decimals

Johannes Kepler (1571 to 1630)
He invented “Kepler’s Laws of Planetary Motion” based on data he got from Tycho Brahe’s astronomical observations

Laurentius Gothus (1565 to 1646)
He was a professor of astronomy who wrote many books on the topic

Galileo Galilei (1564 to 1642)
He was a renowned scientist defended ‘heliocentrism’ (to his own peril

Marin Mersenne (1588 to 1648)
He was a mathematician who communicated with other mathematicians related to concepts concerning what are now known as “Mersenne primes”

René Descartes (1596 to 1650)
He was one of the key thinkers of the “Scientific Revolution” and the Cartesian coordinate system (used in plane geometry and algebra) was named after him. He did formative work on invariants and geometry.

Blaise Pascal (1623 to 1662)
He was a great thinker, known now for “Pascal’s Law” (physics), “Pascal’s Theorem” (math), and “Pascal’s Wager” (theology).

Nicolas Steno (1638 to 1686)
He was considered a pioneer in both anatomy and geology

Seth Ward (1617 to 1689)
He was the Savilian Chair of Astronomy and wrote the foundational volumes, “Ismaelis Bullialdi Astro-Nomiae Philolaicae Fundamenta Inquisitio Brevis” and “Astronomia Geometrica”

Robert Boyle (1627 to 1691)
He was a scientist and theologian who proposed that the study of science was not in conflict with the study of God but could actually glorify God

John Wallis (1616 to 1703)
He was a mathematician who wrote “Arithmetica Infinitorumis” and introduced the term “Continued Fraction” He also worked in areas of cryptography and helped develop calculus

Gottfried Leibniz (1646 to 1716)
He was a “polymath” who did work on determinants and the development of a calculating machine

Isaac Newton (1643 to 1727)
He is still considered to be one of the greatest scientists and mathematicians in history. He founded the principles and theories of “Newtonian Physics”

Carolus Linnaeus (1707 to 1778)
He is known as the “Father of Modern Taxonomy”, but he also made contributions to ecology

Leonhard Euler (1707 to 1783)
He was an important and substantial mathematician and physicist

Maria Gaetana Agnesi (1718 to 1799)
She was a mathematician who was eventually appointed to a position within the Vatican by Pope Benedict XIV

Isaac Milner (1750 to 1820)
He was a “Lucasian Professor of Mathematics” and he developed a process to fabricate Nitrous Acid

Olinthus Gregory (1774 to 1841)
He wrote “Lessons Astronomical and Philosophical” and as a mathematician he became the mathematical master at the Royal Military Academy

William Buckland (1784 to 1856)
He was a geologist who wrote “Vindiciae Geologiae” (The Connexion of Geology with Religion Explained)

Lars Levi Læstadius (1800 to 1861)
He was a botanist who wrote proficiently and discovered four species

Edward Hitchcock (1793 to 1864)
He was a geologist and paleontologist who wrote on the topics of “Natural Theology” and fossilized tracks

William Whewell (1794 to 1866)
He was a professor of mineralogy who wrote “An Elementary Treatise on Mechanics” and “Astronomy and General Physics Considered with Reference to Natural Theology”

Charles Babbage (1791 to 1871)
He was a mathematician, philosopher and mechanical engineer who wrote “The Difference Engine” and the “Ninth Bridgewater Treatise”

Adam Sedgwick (1785 to 1873)
He was a geologist who won both Copley Medal and the Wollaston Medal.

John Bachman (1790 to 1874)
He was an American naturalist who wrote many scientific articles and named several species of animals

Robert Main (1808 to 1878)
He was an astronomer who won the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society

James Clerk Maxwell (1831 to 1879)
He was a mathematician and theoretical physicist who developed the classical electromagnetic theory (he was able to synthesize all prior unrelated observations, experiments and equations of electricity, magnetism and optics into a consistent theory)

Gregor Mendel (1822 to 1884)
He is considered the “Father of Modern Genetics” for his studies related to the inheritance of traits in pea plants

Philip Henry Gosse (1810 to 1888)
He was a marine biologist who wrote “Aquarium” and “A Manual of Marine Zoology”

Asa Gray (1810 to 1888)
He was a botanist and wrote what is now known as “Gray’s Manual” (which is still an important botanical book). He also wrote “Darwiniana” in which he wrote about the relationship between Evolution and Theology

Francesco Faà di Bruno (1825 to 1888)
He was an Italian mathematician who is famous for “Faà di Bruno’s Formula”

Julian Tenison Woods (1832 to 1889)
He was a geologist who wrote “Geological Observations in South Australia” and “History of the Discovery and Exploration of Australia”

Armand David (1826 to 1900)
He was a botanist and a zoologist who described several species new to the West

George Stokes (1819 to 1903)
He was a mathematician and physicist who was a President of the Royal Society and made contributions to “Fluid Dynamics”, optics and mathematical physics

George Salmon (1819 to 1904)
He was a mathematician who won the Copley Medal for his work in mathematics

Henry Baker Tristram (1822 to 1906)
He was an ornithologist and a founding member of the British Ornithologists’ Union. He wrote “The Fauna and Flora of Palestine”

Lord Kelvin (1824 to 1907)
He was a mathematical physicist and engineer who won the Copley Medal, the Royal Medal, and made important contributions in the field of Thermodynamics.

Pierre Duhem (1861 to 1916)
He was a physicist, a mathematician and a philosopher of science who contributed to the field of “Thermodynamic Potentials”

Dmitri Egorov (1869 to 1931)
He was a Russian mathematician who made important contributions in the area of “differential geometry”

Max Planck (1858 to 1947)
He was a physicist who is considered to be the founder of Quantum Mechanics. He won the 1918 Nobel Prize in Physics

Robert Millikan (1868 to 1953)
He was a physicist who won the 1923 Nobel Prize in Physics. He wrote about the important relationship between faith and reason in “Evolution in Science and Religion”

E. T. Whittaker (1873 to 1956)
He was a mathematician who contributed to the fields of applied mathematics, mathematical physics and the theory of “Special Functions” He was a member of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and he wrote “Theories of the Universe and the Arguments for the Existence of God”. He also received the Copley Medal

Arthur Compton (1892 to 1962)
He was a physicist who won a Nobel Prize in Physics

Georges Lemaître (1894 to 1966)
He was a professor of physics and an astronomer who first proposed the Big Bang theory

David Lack (1910 to 1973)
He was an ornithologist and the Director of the Edward Grey Institute of Field Ornithology. He wrote “Evolutionary Theory and Christian Belief” and was known for his study of the genus Euplectes

Charles Coulson (1910 to 1974)
He was a prominent researcher in the field of theoretical chemistry who won the Davy Medal.

Theodosius Dobzhansky (1900 to 1975)
He was a geneticist who was critical of young Earth creationism. He argued that science and faith did not conflict

Michael Polanyi (1891 to 1976)
He was a ‘polymath’ who was active in physical chemistry, economics, and philosophy. He wrote “Science, Faith, and Society”

Aldert van der Ziel (1910 to 1991)
He was a physicist who researched “Flicker Noise”. He wrote more than 15 books and 500 scientific papers. The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers named an award after him

Carlos Chagas Filho (1910 to 2000)
He was a neuroscientist who led the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and wrote “The Origin of the Universe”, “The Origin of Life”, and “The Origin of Man”

Sir Robert Boyd (1922 to 2004)
He was a pioneer in British space science and was Vice President of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Arthur Peacocke (1924 to 2006)
He was a biochemist who worked in areas related to the theory of Evolution. He won the Templeton Prize.

C. F. von Weizsäcker (1912 to 2007)
He was a nuclear physicist who co-discovered the “Bethe-Weizsäcker Formula” He wrote “The Relevance of Science: Creation and Cosmogony” and led the Max Planck Society

Charles Hard Townes
He is a physicist who won the Nobel Prize in Physics and wrote “The Convergence of Science and Religion”

Ian Barbour
He is a physicist who wrote “Christianity and the Scientists” and “When Science Meets Religion”

Stanley Jaki
He is a professor of physics at Seton Hall University who won a Templeton Prize and promotes the idea that modern science could only have arisen in a Christian society

Allan Sandage
He is an astronomer who made several discoveries concerning the “Cigar Galaxy” and wrote the article “A Scientist Reflects on Religious Belief”

John Polkinghorne
He is a particle physicist who wrote “Science and the Trinity” and won the Templeton Prize.

Owen Gingerich
He is an astronomer who teaches the History of Science at Harvard and is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, and the International Academy of the History of Science

R. J. Berry
He is geneticist and a former president of the Linnean Society of London who wrote “God and the Biologist: Personal Exploration of Science and Faith”

Michał Heller
He is a mathematical physicist who writes on “Relativistic Physics” and “Non-Commutative Geometry”. He also wrote “Creative Tension: Essays on Science and Religion” and won the Templeton Prize

Ghillean Prance
He is a botanist involved in the “Eden Project” and current President of “Christians in Science”

Donald Knuth
He is a renowned computer scientist and is known as the “Father of the Analysis of Algorithms”. He wrote “The Art of Computer Programming”

Eric Priest
He is a mathematician and an authority on Solar Magnetohydrodynamics who won the George Ellery Hale Prize

Robert T. Bakker
He is a paleontologist who was an important player in the “Dinosaur Renaissance” and an advocate for the theory that some dinosaurs were warm-blooded

Joan Roughgarden
She is a biologist and Stanford professor who wrote “Evolution and Christian Faith: Reflections of an Evolutionary Biologist”

Kenneth R. Miller
He is a biology professor at Brown University who wrote “Finding Darwin’s God”

Francis Collins
He is the director of the US National Human Genome Research Institute who wrote “The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief”

Simon C. Morris
He is a British paleontologist who studied the Burgess Shale fossils and was the co-winner of a Charles Doolittle Walcott Medal and also won a Lyell Medal

John T. Houghton
He is a professor of atmospheric physics and is co-chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. He won a gold medal from the Royal Astronomical Society

Christopher Isham
He is a theoretical physicist who developed “HPO Formalism” and wrote “Physics, Philosophy and Theology”

Stephen C. Meyer
He is a geologist with a PhD in history and philosophy of science from Cambridge who confounded the Discovery Center and co-wrote “Science and Evidence of Design in the Universe” and “Darwinism, Design, and Public Education”

Michael J. Behe
He is a biochemist and a professor at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania who coined the term “irreducible complexity” in his study of cellular structures. He wrote (or co-wrote) “Darwin’s Black Box”, “Science and Evidence for Design in the Universe” and the “The Edge of Evolution”

William Albert Dembski
He is a mathematician and statistician who taught at Baylor University and wrote “The Design Inference: Eliminating Chance through Small Probabilities” and “No Free Lunch: Why Specified Complexity Cannot Be Purchased without Intelligence”

Charles B. Thaxton
He is a physical chemist who holds a doctorate degree in the history of science from Harvard University. He wrote “The Mystery of Life’s Origin” and “The Soul of Science”.

Guillermo Gonzalez
He is an astrophysicist who studies the late stages of stellar evolution using spectroscopy, and he is also doing research on extrasolar planets. He wrote “The Privileged Planet: How Our Place in the Cosmos Is Designed for Discovery”

Paul Kwan Chien
He is a biologist known for his research on the physiology and ecology of intertidal organisms. He is a professor at the University of San Francisco where his research is centered on the transport of amino acids and metal ions across cell membranes as well as the detoxification mechanisms of metal ions. He wrote “The Cambrian Explosion: Biology’s Big Bang” in “Darwinism, Design and Public Education”

Cornelius G. Hunter
He is a professor of biophysics at Biola University whose research is centered on nonlinear systems and molecular biophysics. He wrote “Darwin’s God: Evolution and the Problem of Evil”, “Darwin’s Proof: The Triumph of Religion Over Science”, and “Science’s Blindspot: The Unseen Religion of Scientific Naturalism”

Scott Minnich
He is a microbiologist who is studying the temperature regulation of Yestis enterocolitca gene expression and coordinate reciprocal expression of flagellar and virulence genes. He co-wrote and presented a paper to the Second International Conference on Design & Nature, entitled “Genetic Analysis of Coordinate Flagellar and Type III Regulatory Circuits”

Henry F. Schaefer, III
He is a computational and theoretical chemist who studied at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Stanford University. He is a member of the International Academy of Quantum Molecular Science and is the Professor of Chemistry, Emeritus, at UC Berkeley

Geoffrey Simmons
He is a medical doctor and wrote “What Darwin Didn’t Know: A Doctor Dissects the Theory of Evolution” and “Billions of Missing Links: A Rational Look at the Mysteries Evolution Can’t Explain”

Wolfgang Smith
He is a mathematician, physicist, and a philosopher of science who has written extensively in the field of “Differential Geometry”. He has either written or contributed to “Cosmos and Transcendence: Breaking Through the Barrier of Scientistic Belief” and “The Wisdom of Ancient Cosmology: Contemporary Science in Light of Tradition”

Marcus R. Ross
He is a vertebrate paleontologist who contributed “The Cambrian Explosion: Biology’s Big Bang” in “Darwinism, Design and Public Education”

That’s quite a list of great thinkers, and it is only a very small representation of theists who have managed to retain a belief in God while deeply exploring the truths they have learned through reason and scientific observation. But these great thinkers have done more than simply hold on to their faith; it was their faith in the existence of an orderly and all-powerful God that established the foundation from which they knew that science could be done in the first place!

Theists hold that our universe is the product of an orderly and rational God and as such, must certainly follow the laws of this orderly and rational law giver. For this reason, we should expect the universe to submit to certain universal constants that can be observed and tested. Perhaps this is why so many great scientific thinkers have been Christians. And these Christians certainly understand the connection between faith and reason.

Jesus Understood the Connection
And the greatest of theistic thinkers was, of course, Jesus Himself. We don’t tend to think of him as the smartest man who ever lived, but (as God Himself) that is exactly what he was (and is). Jesus understood the relationship between reason and faith. Over and over again he offered EVIDENCE that he was God and asked those who were watching to use their reason to connect the evidence to the truth.

John 10:37-38
“If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; but if I do them, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, so that you may know and understand that the Father is in Me, and I in the Father.”

Jesus gave us more than enough REASON to believe that He was who he said he was, and He never asked us to believe blindly. It’s important for us to understand that when Jesus asks us to have faith in Him, he is asking us to accept what he says on the basis of the evidence that He has given us. The Christian Faith is a reasonable faith:

  • Unreasonable Faith: Believing in something IN SPITE of the evidence. We hold an unreasonable faith when we refuse to accept or acknowledge evidence that exists, is easily accessible and clearly refutes what we believe.
  • Blind Faith: Believing in something WITHOUT any evidence. We hold a blind faith when we accept something even though there is no evidence to support our beliefs. We don’t search for ANY evidence that either supports or refutes what we are so determined to believe.
  • Reasonable Faith: Believing in something BECAUSE of the evidence. We hold a reasonable faith when we believe in something because it is the most reasonable conclusion from the evidence that exists. The Bible repeatedly makes evidential claims. It offers eyewitness accounts of historical events that can be verified archeologically, prophetically and even scientifically. We, as Christians are called to hold a REASONABLE FAITH that is grounded in this evidence.

How Reason and Faith Co-Exist
Now it’s important to realize that theists are not the only people who employ ‘faith’ as they sort through and accept truth claims. All of us are comfortable accepting many propositions without clear or tangible definitive evidence. Trusting when you don’t have perfect evidence; this is the substance of ‘faith’, this is what it means to move and rely on ‘faith’. And all of us trust in something we cannot observe, or cannot confirm from direct physical evidence. As an example, both the theist and the atheist must trust in something they cannot see or confirm in order to explain the origin of life in the universe. Both sides may have good theories, both sides may build their case from the best circumstantial evidence available to them, but at the end of the day, both the theist and the atheist are going to have to place their confidence in something that cannot be observed or confirmed with direct physical evidence. Neither group was present at the point at which life began to observe the moment evidentially as eyewitnesses.

If we think of ‘faith’ in this way (as trusting in something that we cannot observe, confirm or demonstrate evidentially, even though other circumstantial evidence may make trusting ‘reasonable’), then all of us exert some form of faith to accept and live within our worldviews. With this notion of ‘faith’ in mind, it is clear that we exercise both reason AND faith in order to come to a belief in ANYTHING:

Reason (Rationality)
The rational process by which we examine the direct and circumstantial evidence that is before us as we build a case toward any potential conclusion

  +

Faith (Reasonable Trust)
The act by which we trust in something that cannot be observed or confirmed from direct physical evidence, but does happen to be the best conclusion from the circumstantial evidence

  =

Belief
The conclusion we reach with as much certainty as is humanly possible given our utilization of rationality and reasonable trust

Reason and faith are not enemies, they are essential partners as we do our best to observe, make sense of, and live in the world around us.

But, Can Fallen Humans Really Trust Their Own Rationality?
Many Christians take a very different view of reason and ‘faith’ than I have offered here. After all, doesn’t the Bible teach that humans, in our fallen natural condition, will always deny the truth of the evidence they see related to the existence of God? Doesn’t the Bible clearly teach that the ‘natural man’ is wicked and cannot apprehend the things of God? Look at some sample verses that are often used to make this case:

Romans 8:5-8
For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so; and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

Romans 1:18-24
The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities-his eternal power and divine nature-have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.

1 Corinthians 2:12-14
We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.

John 6:44
“No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day”

Isn’t the natural mind too depraved to understand the things of God? Aren’t humans incapable of understanding the truth of God’s existence unless God first acts to remove the intellectual barriers so they can see the truth? And if this is the case, isn’t it futile for us to be sharing evidence with people who, in their ‘natural’ condition, are going to reject the truth anyway?

Well let’s think about that for a second. While it is clear that no one comes to the Son unless the Father first draws them, and it is clear that our minds must first be renewed by God so that they can understand spiritual truths, it is also clear that these truths were delivered EVIDENTIALLY to eyewitnesses who then testified about them in the special revelation of the scriptures, and these truths are also available to us EVIDENTIALLY through the natural world that we live in. We observe and listen to the eyewitness accounts of scripture and to natural revelation using our empirical senses, and we appraise the evidence using our rational minds. Yes, God does ‘flip the switch’ and remove barriers that we construct to deny the truth, but He expects us to reason through the evidence once the switch has been flipped.

Live Above the Lies
When non-believers try to paint Christians as unthinking and irrational, they are simply trying to demonize those with whom they disagree. The truth is that while we may not agree on the conclusions reached by atheists, we theists HAVE used our reasoning powers in a rational way to look at the evidence. Not all atheists are rational, and not all Christians have been rational in their examination of the evidence either. But for rational, evidential theists who are committed to studying the truth of their worldview, reason and rationality have been essential to our faith.

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Stand to Reason Speaker

J. Warner Wallace

J. Warner Wallace

I was an atheist for 35 years. I was passionate in my opposition to Christianity, and I enjoyed debating my Christian friends. I seldom found them to be prepared to defend what they believed. I became a Police Officer and eventually advanced to Detective; I spent twelve years working cold-case homicides. Along the way, I developed a healthy respect for the role of evidence in discerning truth, and my profession gave me ample opportunity to press into practice what I learned about the nature and power of evidence. Throughout all of this, I remained an “angry atheist,” hostile to Christianity and largely dismissive of Christians.

But I have to admit that I never took the time to examine the evidence for the Christian Worldview without the bias and presupposition of naturalism. I never gave the case for Christianity a fair shake. When I finally examined the evidence fairly using the tools I learned as a detective, I found it difficult to deny, especially if I hoped to retain my respect for the way evidence is utilized to determine truth. I found the evidence for Christianity to be as convincing as any cold case I’d ever investigated.

From angry atheist, to skeptic, to believer, to seminarian, to pastor, to podcaster and author, my journey has been assisted by my experience as a detective. I want to help you understand how evidence is used to make a case and then show you the evidential strength of the case for Christianity. I’ll teach you the principles of cold-case investigations and help you to utilize these investigative tools to make the case to others.

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Bethinking 2/6: John Lennox on Stephen Hawking’s “The Grand Design”

As a scientist I’m certain Stephen Hawking is wrong. You can’t explain the universe without God

According to Stephen Hawking, the laws of physics, not the will of God, provide the real explanation as to how life on Earth came into being

According to Stephen Hawking, the laws of physics, not the will of God, provide the real explanation as to how life on Earth came into being

There’s no denying that Stephen Hawking is intellectually bold as well as physically heroic. And in his latest book, the renowned physicist mounts an audacious challenge to the traditional religious belief in the divine creation of the universe.

According to Hawking, the laws of physics, not the will of God, provide the real explanation as to how life on Earth came into being. The Big Bang, he argues, was the inevitable consequence of these laws ‘because there is a law such as gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing.’

Unfortunately, while Hawking’s argument is being hailed as controversial and ground-breaking, it is hardly new.

For years, other scientists have made similar claims, maintaining that the awesome, sophisticated creativity of the world around us can be interpreted solely by reference to physical laws such as gravity.

It is a simplistic approach, yet in our secular age it is one that seems to have resonance with a sceptical public.

But, as both a scientist and a Christian, I would say that Hawking’s claim is misguided. He asks us to choose between God and the laws of physics, as if they were necessarily in mutual conflict.

But contrary to what Hawking claims, physical laws can never provide a complete explanation of the universe. Laws themselves do not create anything, they are merely a description of what happens under certain conditions.

What Hawking appears to have done is to confuse law with agency. His call on us to choose between God and physics is a bit like someone demanding that we choose between aeronautical engineer Sir Frank Whittle and the laws of physics to explain the jet engine.

That is a confusion of category. The laws of physics can explain how the jet engine works, but someone had to build the thing, put in the fuel and start it up. The jet could not have been created without the laws of physics on their own  –  but the task of development and creation needed the genius of Whittle as its agent.

Similarly, the laws of physics could never have actually built the universe. Some agency must have been involved.

To use a simple analogy, Isaac Newton’s laws of motion in themselves never sent a snooker ball racing across the green baize. That can only be done by people using a snooker cue and the actions of their own arms.

Hawking’s argument appears to me even more illogical when he says the existence of gravity means the creation of the universe was inevitable. But how did gravity exist in the first place? Who put it there? And what was the creative force behind its birth?

Similarly, when Hawking argues, in support of his theory of spontaneous creation, that it was only necessary for ‘the blue touch paper’ to be lit to ‘set the universe going’, the question must be: where did this blue touch paper come from? And who lit it, if not God?

Much of the rationale behind Hawking’s argument lies in the idea that there is a deep-seated conflict between science and religion. But this is not a discord I recognise.

For me, as a Christian believer, the beauty of the scientific laws only reinforces my faith in an intelligent, divine creative force at work. The more I understand science, the more I believe in God because of my wonder at the breadth, sophistication and integrity of his creation.

The very reason science flourished so vigorously in the 16th and 17th centuries was precisely because of the belief that the laws of nature which were then being discovered and defined reflected the influence of a divine law-giver.

One of the fundamental themes of Christianity is that the universe was built according to a rational , intelligent design. Far from being at odds with science, the Christian faith actually makes perfect scientific sense.

Some years ago, the scientist Joseph Needham made an epic study of technological development in China. He wanted to find out why China, for all its early gifts of innovation, had fallen so far behind Europe in the advancement of science.

He reluctantly came to the conclusion that European science had been spurred on by the widespread belief in a rational creative force, known as God, which made all scientific laws comprehensible.

Despite this, Hawking, like so many other critics of religion, wants us to believe we are nothing but a random collection of molecules, the end product of a mindless process.

This, if true, would undermine the very rationality we need to study science. If the brain were really the result of an unguided process, then there is no reason to believe in its capacity to tell us the truth.

We live in an information age. When we see a few letters of the alphabet spelling our name in the sand, our immediate response is to recognise the work of an intelligent agent. How much more likely, then, is an intelligent creator behind the human DNA, the colossal biological database that contains no fewer than 3.5 billion ‘letters’?

It is fascinating that Hawking, in attacking religion, feels compelled to put so much emphasis on the Big Bang theory. Because, even if the non-believers don’t like it, the Big Bang fits in exactly with the Christian narrative of creation.

That is why, before the Big Bang gained currency, so many scientists were keen to dismiss it, since it seemed to support the Bible story. Some clung to Aristotle’s view of the ‘eternal universe’ without beginning or end; but this theory, and later variants of it, are now deeply discredited.

But support for the existence of God moves far beyond the realm of science. Within the Christian faith, there is also the powerful evidence that God revealed himself to mankind through Jesus Christ two millennia ago. This is well-documented not just in the scriptures and other testimony but also in a wealth of archaeological findings.

Moreover, the religious experiences of millions of believers cannot lightly be dismissed. I myself and my own family can testify to the uplifting influence faith has had on our lives, something which defies the idea we are nothing more than a random collection of molecules.

Just as strong is the obvious reality that we are moral beings, capable of understanding the difference between right and wrong. There is no scientific route to such ethics.

Physics cannot inspire our concern for others, or the spirit of altruism that has existed in human societies since the dawn of time.

The existence of a common pool of moral values points to the existence of transcendent force beyond mere scientific laws. Indeed, the message of atheism has always been a curiously depressing one, portraying us as selfish creatures bent on nothing more than survival and self-gratification.

Hawking also thinks that the potential existence of other lifeforms in the universe undermines the traditional religious conviction that we are living on a unique, God-created planet. But there is no proof that other lifeforms are out there, and Hawking certainly does not present any.

It always amuses me that atheists often argue for the existence of extra-terrestrial intelligence beyond earth. Yet they are only too eager to denounce the possibility that we already have a vast, intelligent being out there: God.

Hawking’s new fusillade cannot shake the foundations of a faith that is based on evidence.

God’s Undertaker: Has science Buried God? by John Lennox is out now (Lion Hudson, £8.99).

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