There was a certain look students had when they would come to my office a few days into a new semester to confess that they were “dropping down” from University Prep English. Rather than soaring on to academia after their senior year, they were now trundling towards community college or—worse yet, they thought—the workplace. Some shifted nervously in their seat, some avoided eye contact, but … MORE »

Peter Stockland  |  September 26, 2014  |  Faith, Media, Politics

As is so often the case in Canadian politics these days, Preston Manning said it most eloquently. “You integrated faith with things the world tries to keep separate,” the former Reform Party leader and now silver eminence of the conservative movement said this week. “You are salt and light. You are a blessing.” The subject of his praise was Link Byfield, former publisher of Alberta … MORE »

Ray Pennings  |  September 23, 2014  |  Books, Culture, Philosophy, Religion

When ought we to share what we believe, and when are we just picking a fight? At the Transatlantic Christian Council in Washington, D.C., this month, Ray Pennings asked Os Guinness about this topic. Guinness is the author of nearly two dozen books, most recently The Global Public Square: Religious Freedom and the Making of a World Safe for Diversity and Renaissance: The Power of … MORE »

Peter Stockland  |  September 19, 2014  |  Foreign Policy, Justice, Politics

When both sides in the Scottish referendum vote praise the contest as democracy’s finest hour, something is being said about politics that really matters. All that really needs to be said is being said about the necessity of democratic politics being the default politics for the human condition. For all its susceptibility to majoritarian overreach and its constant vulnerability to oligarchic manipulation, the enduring strength … MORE »

Doug Sikkema  |  September 18, 2014  |  Culture, Media, Politics, Pontificating

In the latest Comment magazine, our inimitable editor-in-chief makes the case that Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, and now John Oliver have each created a perfect blend of carefully sifted news snippets, sharply pointed satire, and not-so-subtle partisan snark that is simply “toxic for democracy.” Quoting columnist Jonah Goldberg, Smith goes on to argue that these various programs work by treating liberal platitudes as unquestionable truths … MORE »

Matthew Bokma  |  September 17, 2014  |  Education, Philosophy

I’m not often asked, “Why did you attend high school?” or “Why did you earn your degree?” But leading up to our launch this past Monday, many people have asked me, “Why Cardus*U?” The very question suggests that the questioner understands that Cardus*U is a learning program that differs fundamentally from the standard conception of education offered by accredited institutions. It also suggests that the … MORE »

Ray Sawatsky  |  September 9, 2014  |  Education, Labour, Politics

The government and the BC Teachers Federation (union) are at an impasse, according to veteran mediator Vince Ready. The problem in BC reflects a growing divide between public sector unions—who increasing view themselves as pseudo political parties (in some cases equivalent to the official opposition)—and the governments they oppose. In this context, it’s not bargaining, it is ideological warfare. In the BC context, the dispute … MORE »

Doug Sikkema  |  September 5, 2014  |  Culture, Education, Innovation, Legacy

There were times when people would give children large doses of morphine just to calm them down; rub mercury into cuts as a way of healing; and even bathe themselves in urine and excrement to increase cleanliness. It’s not too hard to look back at some of these bizarre rituals and beliefs and to hold our noses up in disdain at such ignorant understandings of … MORE »

Naomi Biesheuvel  |  September 4, 2014  |  Education, Institutions, Policy

The newest collection of U.S. data for the esteemed Cardus Education Survey will be released next week. The release will take place at the CUNY Institute for Education Policy at Roosevelt House, New York, New York, from 5:30-7:45pm on September 10, 2014. The event will feature Cardus’s Ray Pennings, along with Sean Corcoran of New York University; Kathy Jamil, founder of Islamic School’s League of … MORE »

Doug Sikkema  |  August 26, 2014  |  Film, Philosophy, Religion

There’s a sadness that runs through Richard Linklater’s recent film Boyhood, one that’s hard to put your finger on. Shot over twelve years—yes, twelve years!—the film traces the life of Mason Evans (Ellar Coletrane) from the age of 6 to 18, from boyhood to its inevitable end. And I think that’s part of the reason for the sadness: boyhood eventually ends, and it ends all … MORE »