Grant Havers

Grant Havers

Dr. Grant Havers teaches philosophy and politics at Trinity Western University (Canada).


Israel and Identity

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Israel and Identity

After Jesus Christ, Natan Sharansky is George Bush’s favorite philosopher. In early 2005, around the time of his second inaugural, the president praised Sharansky”€”ex-prisoner of the Soviet Gulag, former Israeli cabinet minister, and crusader for human rights”€”in effusive terms. Sharansky’s book The Case For Democracy was, in Bush’s words, part of his “€œpresidential DNA,”€ a work which the leader of the free world recommended as required reading for anyone who desired to make sense of his foreign policy. It is well-nigh impossible to take this rhetoric seriously anymore, particularly in light of the failure to build democracy in nations like Iraq or Afghanistan, where undemocratic traditions so far seem to have won the battle against liberal universalism. Yet Sharansky is undaunted by these failures. In his new book, Defending Identity, he does not abandon his position, in light of these fiascos. Rather, he believes that democracies fail because they do not take account the necessity of identity.

The Limits of Lincoln Bashing

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The Limits of Lincoln Bashing

Between the warring camps vying for ownership of the true “€œAmerican conservatism,”€ a remarkable consensus has emerged around the status of Abraham Lincoln and his legacy. In the conservative house divided, almost everyone agrees that the president was the prophet of democratic imperialism and that his war with the South was a mere dress rehearsal for global crusades for democracy which began half a century after his assassination. Naturally, the so-called paleoconservatives and neoconservatives disagree on the merits of Lincoln’s putative policy, but they don”€™t disagree that he led the advance guard of this project to create the world in America’s image and likeness. This dispute is no mere academic matter, since those who control the Lincoln legacy also manufacture the grist for any number of ideological mills.

Is There Conservatism Beyond Christianity? (or how to book a mental vacation in Athens or Valhalla)

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Is There Conservatism Beyond Christianity? (or how to book a mental vacation in Athens or Valhalla)

Christians on the right are used to witnessing attacks on their faith from atheistic leftists. Ever since the highly influential “€œcultural Marxists”€ of the Frankfurt School, it has become de rigeur for the chattering classes in the media and academe to tear down the historic faith of Western civilization. What often goes unnoticed among conservative Christians is that large elements of the Right often despises Christianity as well. This right-wing attack on Christianity has become a cultural phenomenon on its own, and one not yet properly understood.

A Chosen People without God”€”The Rise of the Neocons

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A Chosen People without God”€”The Rise of the Neocons

The fact that neoconservatives have thought and acted in terms of secularized Judaism places them in the larger company of many other atheistic ideologues who were more than willing to bring heaven down to earth through political action. In the post-Holocaust age, it is not terribly shocking to discover that even secular Jews are tempted to embrace political messianism. Still, when neoconservatives see themselves as a “€œchosen people”€ struggling to break out of their intellectual captivity, this has more to do with leftist adulteration of biblical thought than with any teaching of the Old Testament. My favorite phrase for describing this misuse of the Bible is the indulgence of believing in “€œchosenness without God.”€


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