Christs Girlfriend - September 17, 2003

Times Watch for September 17, 2003

Christs Girlfriend

The Times Sunday magazine features a Deborah Solomon interview with Laurie Whaley of Thomas Nelson Publishers, the Christian publishing house. Whaley is senior editor for Revolve, which Solomon describes as a Bible for teenage girls designed to resemble a fashion magazine.

After a few questions on the irony of the project, Solomon gets snotty, suggesting one passage of Revolve is regressive and that it claims Jesus does not love girls who call boys for dates. Solomon also describes Mary Magdalene as Christs girlfriend.

Heres an excerpt from the interview. Whaley is game, and gives as good as she gets, even as Times reporter Solomon attempts to impose modern-day feminism on Biblical text:

Deborah Solomon: But Mary Magdalene, who was Christ's girlfriend, favored low necklines and loads of jewelry. Laura Whalen, Thomas Nelson Publishers: Mary was a friend of Christ. From the Bible, we have no indication that there was any sexual relationship with her. Solomon: You could argue that Christ was drawn to her precisely because of her flamboyant clothing. Whalen: Christ was drawn to everyone. I think he loved Mary regardless of her clothing. Solomon: But he does not love girls who call boys, at least according to Revolve! It's positively regressive for Revolve to suggest that God made men to be the leaders in romance. Whaley: There's no indication from Scripture that Mary Magdalene ever picked up the phone and called Christ.

For more on Revolve, a fashionable Bible for teen girls, click here.

Bible | Christianity | Interview | Religion | Deborah Solomon | Teenagers

Fanatical Tax-Cutters of the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy

The Tax-Cut Con, columnist Paul Krugmans 7,000 word piece for the Times Sunday magazine, is a history of the modern-day tax-cutting movement as seen from Krugmans skewed-to-the-left and sometimes blinkered perspective.

As Tom Maguire points out, economist Krugman manages to discuss the history of supply-side economics without mentioning Dr. Arthur Laffer, considered by many to be the father of supply-side economics.

Krugman writes that American politics has been dominated for 25 years by a crusade against taxes: I don't use the word crusade lightly. The advocates of tax cuts are relentless, even fanatical. Later he writes: Loosely speaking, that is, supply-siders work for the vast right-wing conspiracy.

Krugmans latest bete noire is Grover Norquist of Americans for Tax Reform, and he goes after him at the end, providing this dour warning: If Grover Norquist is right-and he has been right about a lot-the coming crisis will allow conservatives to move the nation a long way back toward the kind of limited government we had before Franklin Roosevelt. Lack of revenue, he says, will make it possible for conservative politicians-in the name of fiscal necessity-to dismantle immensely popular government programs that would otherwise have been untouchable.

Norquists vision of Americas future, according to Krugman? Poor grannies and lousy schools: In Norquist's vision, America a couple of decades from now will be a place in which elderly people make up a disproportionate share of the poor, as they did before Social Security. It will also be a country in which even middle-class elderly Americans are, in many cases, unable to afford expensive medical procedures or prescription drugs and in which poor Americans generally go without even basic health care. And it may well be a place in which only those who can afford expensive private schools can give their children a decent education.

For the rest of Paul Krugmans history of tax cuts, click here.

Paul Krugman | Grover Norquist | Supply Side | Tax Cuts