Disconnect’ : Texts, Lies and Webcams

  PHONY FRIENDS FOR PHONY PEOPLE? What kind of person thinks that texting a friend in the same room is superior to speaking directly, face-to-face? In a recent opinion piece in The Wall Street Journal, a novelist wrote that it makes perfect sense for teenagers to text each other even when they’re at the same […]


Everyone has an opinion on the new pope. Everyone. I think we are still in the honeymoon phase, but sooner or later criticism will erupt. Maybe that’s the way it goes with popes. If we think back to the year A.D. 42, The Roman Register Newspaper had a story on Peter, the new pope. “A really questionable […]

Is The Sheltering Tower Catholic Fiction?

The book reminds some readers of “The Bells of St. Marys’” and Edwin O’Connor’s “The Edge of Sadness.” O’Connor also wrote “The Last Hurrah.” Both books focus on Catholic culture. Sheltering certainly includes Catholic culture and a Catholic Priest who is dealing with family issues and alcohol, but the Irish immigrants of O’Connor’s day are replaced […]

Gay Marraige Debate Raises Question of Scientific Bias

Professor Nelson Lund, in a WSJ article, accuses the American Psychological Association and other groups of a liberal bias when they report research that finds no bad effects from child rearing by same-sex couples. He quotes the late Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who was also a distinguished social scientist: “Social scientists are frequently caught up […]

What is the Sheltering Tower?

Someone at a recent book signing asked: “What is the Sheltering Tower?” At one level, the answer is simple. The Sheltering Tower is Sacred Heart Cathedral in Tampa, Florida. The name Sheltering Tower comes from  Old Abe, the Holocaust survivor, who finds a Hanukkah hymn in the choir loft at Sacred Heart Church. “Rock of ages – let our […]

Unmarried Moms

The review in the Wall Street Journal on new unmarried mom’s asks why young people are marrying later and why the rate of non-marital childbearing among 20-something women has risen by 27%. The answer given is that the knowledge economy has made higher education essential for middle-class life and many women cannot achieve this standard. […]

Dumb Blondes?

Do blondes have more fun or are they just dumber than the rest of us?Dumb-blonde jokes won’t go away and mythology is usually based on at least a speck of truth. So let’s do some fun speculation. Depending on your point of view and your sense of humor, here is one of the best or […]

The Midwest Book Review

A new review of The Sheltering Tower. This one from The Midwest Book Review. “Betrayal can leave many lives hanging in the balance. “The Sheltering Tower” is the story of a group struggling to endure these rough times. Juanita, a homeland security agent, and Monk McIntyre, a pastor, come together to cope with betrayal of […]

Universal Preschool for Everyone?

Will universal preschool lead to improved academic functioning? I don’t think so. I’ve been following early childhood brain-stimulation for many years, both through the literature and research, as well as direct observation. I helped test kids when the Head Start program first originated and have followed Head Start and other preschool programs through the years. […]

“She’s too fat”

As Holman W. Jenkins, Jr. reports in The Wall Street Journal, “Most of the world has grown fatter since the 1970s, and economists naturally turn to economics to explain why. Food prices have fallen in relation to incomes. Jobs have become less strenuous. Instead of being paid to exercise, now people must pay to exercise.” […]

Science and Religion

Thoughts in this post were triggered by Wendell Berry’s Life Is A Miracle: An Essay Against Modern Superstition. Berry criticizes scientists who believe the mind is just a machine. He calls this the Tarzan Theory of the mind, which holds that a human, raised entirely by apes, “would have a mind nonetheless fully human.” He […]

Outgrow Autism?

Who can outgrow autism? Recent studies report a small number of people diagnosed with autism seemed to outgrow the condition. 10 to 20% of children who were diagnosed with autism achieved optimal outcomes. In my opinion, there are a couple problems with this optimistic outlook. The first is that any behavioral studies done in the first two […]