Weekend Reads – May 14, 2011

Here are four articles/posts from this week that you should read.  These are the best of the best of what I’ve read in the areas of politics, economics, Christianity, and leadership:

Newspapers

Politics – “Ron Paul’s land of second-rate values” – by Michael Gerson at The Washington Post.  Gerson has a critique of libertarianism, saying:

“Libertarians often cover their views with a powdered wig of 18th- and 19th-century philosophy. They cite Locke, Smith and Mill as advocates of a peaceable kingdom — a utopia of cooperation and spontaneous order. But the reality of libertarianism was on display in South Carolina. Paul concluded his answer by doing a jeering rendition of an addict’s voice: “Oh yeah, I need the government to take care of me. I don’t want to use heroin, so I need these laws.” Paul is not content to condemn a portion of his fellow citizens to self-destruction; he must mock them in their decline. Such are the manners found in Paulsville.

This is not “The Wealth of Nations” or the “Second Treatise of Government.” It is Social Darwinism. It is the arrogance of the strong. It is contempt for the vulnerable and suffering.”

Economics – “You are so money, honey” by Sarah Skwire at Modified Rapture.  Sarah describes the top ten pickup lines that only work on economists.  It’s hilarious (if you understand any of them).

Christianity – “Parenting 001” by Kevin DeYoung at The Gospel Coalition.  Kevin describes a conversation he had with his son while he was trying to have a teachable moment… and the conversation didn’t go quite the way he’d hoped.  It’s a good thing that Bryan Caplan, in his new book, “Selfish Reasons to Have More Kids,” says that nature dominates nurture in the raising of kids, and any action that you do as a parent has relatively little effect in comparison to their genetics.

Leadership – “The process of self-improvement” by Wally Bock at Three Star Leadership.  Bock talks about trying to emulate Ben Franklin’s practice of self-improvement—determine which of your behaviors you want to change, and track your progress.  I found it interesting that Benjamin Franklin was told that he was “proud,” so he resolved to become more humble.  When asked about his progress, he said, “I cannot boast of much success in acquiring the reality of this virtue, but I had a good deal of success with regard to the appearance of it.”  Classic quote.

What are your thoughts about these posts?  You can leave your comments here.