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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

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 February 12, 2010 / 28 Shevat 5770

Obama's reality gap

By Rich Lowry




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It might have been the most revelatory moment of the Obama presidency. In an interview with Time magazine, a chastened President Barack Obama talked of his sputtering Middle East peace initiative. "This is just really hard," he explained. "This is as intractable a problem as you get."


As an observation, this is as banal as it gets. After all the wars and all the terror attacks against Israel and all the frustrated American diplomatic forays across the last two administrations, no one should be surprised at the intractability of the Israeli-Arab conflict. But Obama sounded as if it were painful new information that had forced an unwelcome adjustment in his worldview.


This speaks either to an astonishing historical ignorance (did he not know?) or a stupendous self-regard (did he not care because he thought he was so special?), or both.


There is already a debate over what went wrong with the Obama presidency. Is his team of advisers — nearly universally considered the best and the brightest until the day before yesterday — serving him poorly? Has he failed to communicate effectively, even though almost all his speeches have been critically acclaimed? Did he fail to "pivot to jobs" fast enough?


Actually, Obama has a more worrisome problem: a reality gap. During the campaign, Obama could throw a rhetorical pixie dust over all the difficult choices inherent in governing and the contradictions of his own program, making them fade into a beguiling vision of a sun-lit post-Bush America. This magical realism sustained him until November 2008, but couldn't withstand governing.

Letter from JWR publisher


Consider Obama's most elemental appeal as a candidate: He excited the base of his own party while winning over the center with talk of "post-partisanship." On the stump, he could maintain this balance. In office, he had to choose either partisanship in the form of his powerful Democratic allies on Capitol Hill, or post-partisanship in the form of concessions to Republicans that would anger and disappoint his own side. He chose Nancy Pelosi, and watched independents flee from him.


On fiscal policy, Obama could promise massive new programs at the same time, in one debate, he asserted his approach would mean "a net spending cut." A laughable contradiction, it wasn't fully exposed until Obama had to write a budget. With $1 trillion deficits now stretching off into the horizon, his answer is appointing a commission to study the matter.


Obama is still the same illusionist from the campaign on his signature health-care initiative. The new $1 trillion entitlement will reduce the deficit. It will insure millions more people while bending the cost curve down. The hundreds of billions of dollars in Medicare cuts will be utterly painless. There's no trade-off or sacrifice in sight, and — not surprisingly — people don't believe it.


Obama came to office under fundamental misapprehensions that hamper him still. It's not true that all that was keeping the Israelis and Palestinians apart was the lack of U.S. engagement, or that the Iranians were amenable to getting talked out of their nuclear program, or that Guantanamo Bay was a pointless contrivance.


Nor is it true that government is a sustainable source of economic growth, or a more efficient allocator of capital than the market. This is why Obama's stimulus program — inevitably, a dog's breakfast of politically driven priorities — is such a shambles that his aides never utter the word "stimulus" anymore. It is on to the next program, a nearly $100 billion "jobs" bill that reflects the touching belief that to work as intended a program only has to be named appropriately.


Obama's advisers want him to pull out of his downdraft by getting back to campaign mode. It's governance as performance art. He's hosting a bipartisan health-care summit on Feb. 25. Surely, he'll sound great and spin gorgeous webs of fancy — as the reality gap yawns beneath him.

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© 2009 King Features Syndicate

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