Theologian Tryon Edwards has suggested right actions in the future are the best apologies for bad actions in the past. In that sense, says Jonathan Bartley, true apologies are yet to be forthcoming in many areas of public life today.
The competitive nature of the top-down, corporate capitalist system means we can never truly be 'all in this together', says Jonathan Bartley. All we do is sacrifice the most vulnerable for the sake of maintaining an unjust order. Economic alternatives are essential, and go well beyond statism.
While David Cameron and Ed Miliband continue to support relentless growth and minor amendments to the economic system, the inequalities inherent in that system will prosper, says Jonathan Bartley. A more thoroughgoing critique and real alternatives are needed.
It’s staring George Osborne in the face. It’s written in the Autumn Statement. But the Chancellor still doesn’t get it, says Jonathan Bartley. But the green challenge is central to developing a just, sustainable economy.
Real political change does not follow one, or even three, crises. It takes decades, says Jonathan Bartley, surveying the scene this summer. In certain respects things aren’t all that different from sixty years ago. But grassroots pressure still makes a difference.
Once in a while, the Church gets a chance to atone for its sins. The referendum on the Alternative Vote (AV) for Westminster elections is a golden opportunity to demonstrate that, unlike the Church of 100 years ago, which op¬posed the suffragettes, it will back the campaign for a fairer electoral system.
There may be no direct route from the politics of Jesus' day to the politics of modern Britain, but there are embodied principles and narratives in the Gospel which directly challenge the marginalisation of the poor and the use of ideology (religious or otherwise) to prop up the status quo, says Jonathan Bartley. These have a good deal to say to us as we assess the Spending Review and those it benefits and penalises.
In its literal sense "doing God" is a theological nonsense. Christianity itself suggests you can only really respond to an invitation to join in what God is already doing, says Jonathan Bartley. Nevertheless, the debate about it acts as a useful warning to politicians not to suck up to the religious, and to Christians to live out the values of the Gospel rather than defending their self-interest.
Some weeks ago there was speculation that Pope Benedict might be invited to deliver a Radio 4 'Thought for the Day' during his state and pastoral visit in September. Jonathan Bartley anticipates an interesting exchange between the pontiff and the producer...
The new justice secretary's approach to prison indiciates a healthy departure from previous policy, but before we get too excited, it should be noted that it falls a long way short of restorative ideas, says Jonathan Bartley.