In this issue

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 June 20, 2007 / 4 Tamuz, 5767

Stranded on Delta: They may love to fly, but it certainly doesn't show

By Rod Dreher

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | A lot of things go through a 40-year-old traveler's mind when he wakes up at 4 a.m. on a metal grate in a woebegone corner of New York's JFK Airport. Things like: Where's the &!#@% Advil? And: If ravenous tubercular weasels gnawed the hearts out of Delta Airlines executives, wouldn't that be simultaneously an act of cannibalism and of justice?

I was one of a planeload of Dallas-bound passengers last Sunday night whose flight was canceled after spending five hours on the tarmac. The delay was not Delta's fault. But inasmuch as Delta and other airlines — a passenger's rights coalition last week cited American, United and US Airways as being egregious offenders — are finding themselves in this situation more and more this awful summer, here are a few hints that might keep customers from devoutly wishing for the airlines' demise:

Water us. Five hours on a plane with only a cup of water per person, and no other fluids offered? Come on.

Have a contingency plan in place for these situations. Taking passengers back to the terminal at midnight and telling them that they're basically on their own for the evening is unconscionable. The other night, those with financial resources and the wherewithal to leave found their way to hotel rooms, at considerable extra cost and trouble. Most of us slept in the airport. We begged for water and food, all the shops in our terminal being closed. Finally some Delta employees appeared and desultorily dumped warm water and packaged snacks on the floor, along with blankets, then slunk off.

Hire competent staff. One poor passenger had held on the phone with Delta for two hours to rebook his flight, only to be told that he had to speak to someone in person at JFK. So he waited in line for ages, only to be told that he had to rebook his flight by telephone! There were countless stories of contradictory information being given to passengers by airline employees.

Hire human beings. We were all in a rotten situation that night. Delta's people didn't want to be there, and neither did the rest of us (and nobody wanted to be near the slobby passenger with the thick New York accent, who apparently believed that repeating the F-word loudly and liturgically would change our lives for the better). It was astonishing, though, to encounter over and over again airline employees who acted as if we passengers had ruined their evening by our miserable existence. A little empathy would have gone a long way at that hour.

I did encounter a few saintly Deltoids, bless their hearts. But for me, the face of Delta Airlines will always be the snotty woman manning the check-in desk in Terminal 3 on Monday morning. After spending the night on metal grates in Terminal 4, where we'd eventually been sent by Delta in search of food, a Richardson passenger and I decided to return to Terminal 3. Our flight home was set for 7 that evening, and we hoped to check in early. We approached Cruella de Delta, showed our tickets and asked for boarding passes.

She sniffed that check in wasn't possible until six hours before the flight. Which meant we'd have five more hours to sit on the floor, or on metal chairs, and spin.

"But we've just spent the night sleeping on grates," I pleaded. "All we're asking is that you let us in so we can sleep on the carpet."

"I am sad for you," she replied sassily, to us problem children. "But that's not my fault." Snap!

After that, I'd ride a bony-backed mule to my destination before I'd give Delta my business. You simply can't treat customers that way. I didn't pay $1,800 on a plane ticket, endure a 49-hour journey home, and end up spending the night on a grate — only to be condescended to when requesting an upgrade to a carpeted floor.

Delta handled the situation badly, but the congestion that caused the initial problem wasn't the airline's fault. The Department of Transportation recently announced that airline flight delays are at their highest number since the government began keeping track in 1996. Congress has got to spend the billions it's going to take to upgrade our antiquated air traffic control system. And this crazy airline overbooking policy has got to end. On the other hand, I'm all for a passengers' bill of rights, but I'm also in favor of consumers paying more for tickets to compensate airlines for providing decent amenities — food, water, a cot — to stranded travelers.

This is going to be a miserable summer for air travel, with sprawling terminals serving as Dante-esque cities of woe. Abandon hope all ye who enter here — and don't forget the Advil.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

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Rod Dreher is assistant editorial page editor of the Dallas Morning News and author of the forthcoming "Crunchy Cons" (Crown Forum).


06/13/07: When did conservatism start to mean never having to say you're sorry?
05/08/07: PBS darling gets abused by PC police
05/02/07: Impervious to beauty and deadened to depravity
04/20/07: What I know about being a loner
10/28/05: How the conservatives crumble

© 2007, The Dallas Morning News, Distributed by Knight Ridder/Tribune Information Services.