August 2012

Cover Story

With political integrity drowning in big money, it's too late for small tweaks. The whole system needs a reboot.


Want some economic good news? Credit unions, employee-owned business, public banks—the "new economy" is breaking out all over.
The Lakota people of South Dakota are building bonds with the Taizé brothers from France. The result? Spirituality that spans the ages, and a promise of reconciliation.
Preaching for social transformation requires an abundance of courage, moral credibility, and the virtue of precision.
If we want a democracy that represents the public interest, we'll need a system where politicians are no longer bought and paid for by the highest bidders.
Near the end of his life, Howard Thurman was called "one of the greatest spiritual resources of this nation." He was also a pioneer in environmental theology.


State voter-suppression measures go beyond ID laws.
Will Congress cut food stamps, conservation, and the farmer safety net—or fail to pass a Farm Bill at all?
Faith leaders and others protest a planned military base on a South Korean island.


What explains our moral leaders' mealy-mouthed silence on climate change?
Hey Pres. Obama: The Nobel Peace Prize committee is calling. They want their medal back.
The spiritual connection between the slow rhythm of August and the Sabbath.
Remind me again what lawyers do. I forget.
Our call from God is to offer hope where nobody else does.

Culture Watch

The Dictator, amid its crudity and over-the-top stereotypes, asks us to reimagine democracy.
We are HyperGiants by Gowe / Dreaming by Barbara A. Holmes / Being Elmo: A Puppeteer's Journey / Greening Spaces for Worship and Ministry: Congregations, Their Buildings, and Creation Care by Mark A. Torgerson
Forged in the Fiery Furnace: African American Spirituality by Diana L. Hayes
99 to 1: How Wealth Inequality is Wrecking the World and What We Can Do About It by Chuck Collins
What vampires can teach us about consumer capitalism and human desire.
Concrete, Steel, and Paint, directed by Cindy Burstein and Tony Heriza
Tom Morello's approach to politics is as unique and incisive as his best guitar solos.


The question that Bill Wylie-Kellermann failed to directly ask and answer in “An Assault on Local Democracy” (June 2012) is, why are some Michigan cities and school districts under the direction of an emergency manager? Certain cities/school districts have an emergency manager not because of
Reflections on the Common Lectionary, Cycle B
Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change
Re: “The Face of Hate” (interview by Joanie Eppinga, June 2012): Thanks for your great work! But your caricature of Calvinism is uninformed and unnecessary.

Web Extra

Learn how to preach for social transformation with these excellent resources.
Experience the Lord’s Prayer in Lakota.
Did you know that there are more than 10 million Americans involved in worker-owned companies? Take a look.
Big money has corrupted our politics, and We the People want it fixed.