Idealism

Global Generosity and “Being Played for Suckers”
Global Generosity and “Being Played for Suckers”

In this article originally published by Christianity and Crisis on March 18, 1946, Charles W. Gilkey warns Americans not to worry that helping people abroad will make them “suckers.”

World Community and World Government: What Reinhold Niebuhr Said
World Community and the Folly of World Government: What Reinhold Niebuhr Said

“A Christian knows, or ought to know, that an adequate Christian political ethic is not established merely by conceiving the most ideal possible solution for a political problem. He must, in all humility, deal with the realities of human nature, as well as the ideal possibilities.”

Where Are the Playful Realists?
Where Are the Playful Realists?

It is childish to demand the real world conform to one’s fancy; it is childlike to learn about the real world by playing in an imaginary one. Both the idealist and the cynical realist are childish. The Christian realist, by contrast, should be childlike.

What Power Still Gets Wrong on Humanitarian Intervention: A Book Review of Samantha Power’s The Education of An Idealist
What Power Still Gets Wrong on Humanitarian Intervention: A Review of Samantha Power’s The Education of An Idealist

In “The Education of an Idealist,” Samantha Power comes across as a compassionate person with generous impulses. These attributes cannot by themselves determine policy on the question of humanitarian interventions.

Why Idealists Are Wrong about China’s Peaceful Rise
Idealists Are Wrong about China’s Peaceful Rise

Idealists argue China’s increasing power will not result in a hegemonic war with the US. They are dead wrong.

What the Coronavirus Can Teach Us about Politics - COVID-19 Government
What the Coronavirus and Lockdowns Can Teach Us about Politics

Do not be too hard on politicians who struggle with and differ on their answers to these questions about the COVID-19 and the lockdowns. These are very hard things, and there is no indisputable right answer.

Reinhold Niebuhr and the Second World War

Beginning in 1940, Reinhold Niebuhr made the case for a sober, realistic, and morally grounded US involvement overseas, out of the central admission that whatever America’s own faults, a punctilious detachment from world affairs might very well result in the triumph of greater imbalances and injustices

Rethinking the Marshall Plan
Rethinking the Marshall Plan

Neither active idealism (a massive humanitarian intervention) nor defensive realism (an anticommunist security strategy) quite comes to grips with the Marshall Plan’s rationale. Americans would not have been so committed to spending these large, sacrificial sums except that their own core beliefs, values, and institutions were at risk.

Trump’s UN Realism and Christian Benevolence

Many Christian elites will not like Donald Trump’s United Nations speech this week, whose key phrase was “we reject the ideology of globalism and accept the doctrine of patriotism.”