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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review January 29, 2009 / 4 Shevat 5769

The celestial choirs of bailouts

By Roger Simon


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Barack Obama has been president for more than a week now, and nothing has changed. Nothing. The stock market is still way down, layoffs continue, and we still don't have universal health care.


Where is the change we can believe in? Nobody told us it was going to take more than a week.


Hillary Clinton warned us about this. On Feb. 25 last year, campaigning against Obama in Rhode Island, she mocked him for promising too much.


"Now, I could stand up here and say, 'Let's just get everybody together. Let's get unified,'" Clinton said as the crowd giggled. "The skies will open, the light will come down, celestial choirs will be singing and everyone will know we should do the right thing, and the world will be perfect."


The crowd laughed and applauded.


"Maybe I've just lived a little long, but I have no illusions about how hard this is going to be," Clinton went on. "You are not going to wave a magic wand to make special interests disappear."


But what did she know? People wanted hope; they wanted the magic wand. (Someone told me Obama has made Clinton his secretary of state. Very funny. Next somebody is going to tell me he made a tax evader his secretary of the treasury.)


So how much time does President Obama have?


Well, how much time do you have? How much time before your job disappears? How much time before you can't pay your mortgage or meet your other obligations? How much time before your savings (assuming you have any) are gone?


Obama is guaranteed a paycheck for the next four years. Are you?


All of which he realizes. And he wants to work quickly.


"The American people expect action," he said Tuesday after meeting with Republican House members on Capitol Hill. "The key right now is to keep politics to a minimum. I do hope that we can all put politics aside and do the American people's business right now."


There are at least four reasons this won't be easy: The problem is massive; nobody really knows what will work; the proposed fixes are not popular with the American people; and members of Congress hardly ever put politics aside. It is like asking them to put oxygen aside.


You would think spending money to help save the economy — our jobs, our savings, our lives — would have massive public support, but that is not so. In a recent NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll conducted a few weeks ago, people were asked which things they feared Obama "will go too far" in pushing.


Guess what No. 1 was? Pulling troops out of Iraq too quickly? No, only 41 percent of Americans fear that. Appointing liberal justices to the Supreme Court? No, only 38 percent are concerned about that. How about "promoting a liberal agenda on social issues such as gay rights and abortion"? Nope, just 36 percent of the country is worried about that.


The No. 1 fear that Americans have when it comes to Barack Obama is that he will go too far in "providing financial aid and loans to corporations." That got 52 percent, the only concern shared by a majority of people.


Wall Street has not helped with this. Last year, Congress approved a $700 billion bailout for troubled financial institutions, some of which went for wild parties, huge bonuses, a $230,000 annual salary for a chauffeur and $1.2 million for an office redecoration that included an $88,000 area rug. (Maybe it was made out of Corinthian leather.)


Main Street is upset with this. Main Street thinks good money may be thrown after bad. The original bailout bill, which set in motion the spending of $350 billion, passed the Senate last year by a vote of 74-25. The vote this month to spend the second $350 billion passed by a vote of only 52-42. Now Barack Obama has his own plan. It is not a bailout bill but a stimulus bill, and it has an $825 billion price tag. There are probably enough Democrats in the House and Senate to pass it, but Obama wants bipartisan support. He wants the nation to pull together. And he also may have to go back to Congress for even more money, and that may be impossible without some real bipartisanship.


Why is bipartisanship so difficult? One reason is decade upon decade of gerrymandering, which has left almost all congressional districts with large Republican majorities or large Democratic majorities. That is why incumbents almost never lose.


But incumbents can lose primaries, especially if an opponent claims to be a more "real," i.e. more partisan, Republican or a more "real" Democrat. So incumbents don't like to risk votes that make them look less partisan. They see no profit in it.


Wait a second. Aren't our lawmakers supposed to put concern for the nation above concern for their own reelection?


Yes. And the skies will open, the light will come down, celestial choirs will be singing and everyone will know we should do the right thing, and the world will be perfect.


In other words, don't make me laugh.

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© 2009, Creators Syndicate