All posts by Chuck Fager

Breaking: FGC Set to Tap Barry Crossno as New General Secretary

This info has been around for some time, from reliable sources, and has been bottled up long enough:
Great Quaker Turnover

Friends General Conference is set to name Barry Crossno as its new General Secretary.

As was true of the other two Quaker big groups which have hired CEOs in recent months (AFSC & FCNL), Crossno is a new face, has roots far from Philly (Dallas), and has considerable experience in fundraising. (In fact, Crossno is currently “Development Manager” at Pendle Hill.) He’s younger than the others, tho, barely 40, and relatively young in Quakerdom as well, first visiting Meeting in 1998.

Continue reading Breaking: FGC Set to Tap Barry Crossno as New General Secretary

Will It Ruin The Planet If I Buy These Blueberries??

Blueberries from ChileAh, January. It’s the season of snow and ice and other annoyances.

But there’s an UP-side: in the supermarkets I can find tubs of fat, dark, juicy blueberries.

I love ‘em. Call me an old anti-oxidant junkie. (In fact, some of you might have noticed that my Gmail address is supposed to be “wild blueberries” in French. I say “supposed to be” because I misspelled it; oh well, Comment puis-je être maladroit?)

Continue reading Will It Ruin The Planet If I Buy These Blueberries??

Beethoven’s Message to Guantanamo — And To Us

BeethovenMy musical hero Beethoven  (born around this date in 1770; baptized on December 17; died 1827) wrote only one opera, Fidelio.

In it, instead of rhapsodizing about Teutonic gods, or killing off ill-fated sopranos, his story dealt with a group of political prisoners who win their freedom from an oppressive system, mainly through the heroism of a woman.

Continue reading Beethoven’s Message to Guantanamo — And To Us

The Enemy of My Enemy Is My Friend; Etc. (Re: War With Iran?)

I really didn’t want to spend much time on this blog talking about current affairs.

But it’s becoming inescapable. And one topic that requires mention is an ongoing story that only fitfully pops up on the radar screen, but which is a BIG ongoing deal. And the Big Deal is the answer to this question:

Will we go to war with Iran??

Continue reading The Enemy of My Enemy Is My Friend; Etc. (Re: War With Iran?)

An Example of Intelligent Conservatism

An example of intelligent conservatism. I wonder if anyone in charge was listening??

From an article by David Frum in the New York Times Magazine, published online Nov. 12:

Even from a conservative point of view, the welfare state is not all bad. G. K. Chesterton observed that you should never take a fence down until you understand why it had been put up. We should remember why the immediate post-Depression generations created so many social-welfare programs. They were not motivated only — or even primarily — by “compassion.” They were motivated as well by the desire for stability.

Continue reading An Example of Intelligent Conservatism

Bush & His Book: Some Truths In Review

I make it a rule not to write reviews of books I haven’t read. I also do my best to avoid pontificating about them.

But I’m also a Quaker, who follows this rule about rules by the Elders of Balby, which they appended to a long list of rules for Quakers in 1656:

Dearly beloved Friends, these things we do not lay upon you as a rule or form to walk by; but that all, with a measure of the light, which is pure and holy, may be guided: and so in the light walking and abiding, these things may be fulfilled in the Spirit, not in the letter, for the letter killeth, but the Spirit giveth life.

Continue reading Bush & His Book: Some Truths In Review

The Inhuman Side of Humanitarianism

Philip Gourevitch is a writer for the New Yorker, and a student of foreign affairs, including wars. In the Oct.11 issue of the magazine, he published a stunning piece, “Alms Dealers,” which demands the attention of every one who ever wanted to give money or time to help someone in distress far away, or even nearby. It is especially salient and urgent for Quakers concerned with the transfer of cash from US Quaker groups to churches and projects in Kenya.

Continue reading The Inhuman Side of Humanitarianism