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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 Nov. 2, 2012 / 17 Mar-Cheshvan, 5773

Obama and the politics of contempt

By Caroline B. Glick








JewishWorldReview.com | "Your first time shouldn't be with just anybody. You want to do it with a great guy."

So begins the now famous official Barack Obama for President campaign ad that was released last week. The ad depicts a young woman named Lena Dunham, who is apparently a celebrity among Americans in their teens and twenties.

After that opening line, Ms. Dunham continues on for another minute and a half discussing how having sex for the first time and voting for Barack Obama for President are really the same thing, and how young women don't want to be accused of either being virgins or of having passed up on their chance to cast their votes for Obama next Tuesday.

I've never been particularly interested in so-called "women's issues." It never seemed to me that any party or politician was particularly good or bad for me due to the way they thought of women. That all changed with the Dunham ad for Obama.

With this ad, Obama convinced me he is a misogynist.

The Obama campaign's use of a double entendre to compare sex -- the most personal, intimate act we engage in as human beings with voting — the most public act we engage in as human beings -- is a scandal.



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It is demeaning and contemptuous of women. It reduces us to sexual objects. When called on to vote, as far as Obama is concerned, as slaves to our passions, we make our decisions not based on our capacity for rational choice. Rather we choose our leaders solely on the basis our sexual desires.

Beyond the ad's bald attempt to impersonalize, generalize and cheapen the most personal act human beings engage in, the ad is repulsive because it takes for granted that what happens in our private lives is the government's business.

Not to put too fine a point on it, but this is a totalitarian position.

The whole point of liberal democracy is to put a barrier between a person's personal life and his or her government. A liberal democracy is founded on the notion of limited government. It assumes there are a lot of places where government has no role to play. And first and foremost among those places is the bedroom.

The theory behind limited government is that if the government is permitted in our private space then we are no longer free. When — as in the case of the Dunham ad — a political campaign conveys the message that there is something personally wrong with not actively supporting its candidate, it communicates the message that it sees no distinction between personal and public life and therefore rejects the basic notion of freedom from government. And this is repugnant, not just for women, but for everyone who values freedom.

One of the oddest aspects of the Obama sex ad is that to believe that this sort of message can be effective, the campaign had to ignore mountains of data about the demographic group the ad targets — young, college educated women.

According to just about every piece of survey data collected over the past twenty years, young women in America today are more accomplished, more professionally driven, and more intellectually successful than their male counterparts. That the Obama campaign believes the votes of this successful, smart group of women can be won by appealing to their basest urges rather than their capacity to reason is demeaning and perverse, and one would think, counterproductive.

But it isn't surprising.

The fact is that the Obama campaign -- and indeed, the Obama presidency -- has treated the American people with unprecedented arrogance and contempt. On issue after issue, Obama and his minions have eschewed intellectual argumentation. On issue after issue they have preferred instead to attack Obama's detractors as stupid, backwards, bigoted, bellicose and evil.

For instance, however one feels about current events in the Middle East, there is a legitimate — indeed critical -- argument to be had about the nature of the Islamist forces the Obama administration is supporting from Cairo, Egypt to Alexandria, Virginia.

The Muslim Brotherhood is the most popular movement in the Islamic world. It is also a totalitarian, misogynist, anti-Jewish, anti-Christian and anti-American movement. It seeks Islamic global supremacy, the genocide of Jewry, the subjugation of Christianity and the destruction of the United States.

There is an intellectual case to be made for appeasing these popular, popularly elected forces. There is a (stronger) intellectual case to be made for opposing them. But rather than make any of the hard arguments for appeasing the Muslim Brotherhood, the Obama administration has deflected the issue by castigating everyone who opposes its appeasement policies as racist, McCarthyite warmongers.

If women who don't support Obama are prudish geeks, Americans who oppose his appeasement policies are bloodthirsty bigots.

Then there was the attack in Benghazi on September 11 and the general Islamic assaults on US embassies throughout the Muslim world that day.

The acts of aggression that Muslims carried out against several US embassies on September 11 and since have all been acts of war against America. The rioters who stormed the US embassies in Egypt, Tunis and Yemen and replaced the American flag with the flag of Al Qaida all violated sovereign US territory and carried out acts of war. The US had the right, under international law to repel and respond with military force against the rioters as well as against their governments. Instead the White House blamed the acts of war on a US citizen who posted a video on YouTube.

Then there was Benghazi. In Benghazi jihadists took this collective aggression a step further. They attacked the US consulate and a US government safe house with mortars and rocket propelled grenades. Their goal was to murder all the US citizens inside the compounds. In the event, they successfully murdered four Americans, including the US Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens.

In the six weeks that have passed since the attack in Benghazi, despite administration attempts to stonewall, and despite the US's media's inexcusable lack of interest in the story, information has continuously dribbled out indicating that Obama and his senior advisors knew in real time what was happening on the ground. It has also come out that they rejected multiple requests from multiple sources to employ military power readily available to save the lives of the Americans on the ground.

There may be good reasons that Obama and his top aides denied those repeated requests for assistance and allowed the American citizens pinned down in Benghazi to die. But Obama and his aides have not provided any.

Rather than defend their actions, Obama and his advisors first sought to cover-up what happened by blaming the acts of war on that YouTube video.

When that line of argument collapsed of its own absurdity, Obama shifted to blaming the messenger. His campaign accused everyone asking for facts and truthful explanations about what happened in Benghazi of trying to politicize the attack.

Obama himself has twice struck the Captain Rennault pose and declared himself "Shocked, shocked!" that anyone would dare to insinuate that he did not do everything in his power to save the lives of the Americans whose lives he failed to save.

The reason specific sectors of a society usually feel compelled to vote on the basis of their sectoral interests rather than their general interests as citizens of their country is because they feel that one candidate or party specifically endangers their sectoral interests. Hence, the Lena Dunham ad, which insults women specifically, compels women to vote as women against Obama.

In the case of Obama's appeasement of the Muslim world, there is no specific group that is hurt more than any other group by his policies. As we saw in Libya, Egypt, Tunis Yemen and beyond, his appeasement policies endanger all Americans equally.

This is not the case with Obama's treatment of Israel and Jews. Obama' supporters always highlight statements he has made and actions he has taken in relation to Israel and Jews that are relatively supportive of both.

To be sure, like every other President, Obama has made some statements, and taken some actions that have been supportive of Jews and of Israel. But unlike most other Presidents, he has made far more statements and taken far more actions that have been contemptuous and hostile to Israel and Jews. And this is inexcusable.

It is inexcusable that Obama uses coded anti-Semitic language to blame America's econimc woes on "fat cat bankers."

It is inexcusable that his Secretary of State and his senior advisors have repeatedly made references to the so-called Israel Lobby to explain why America is supposedly hamstrung in its ability to sell Israel to the wolves.

It is inexcusable that Obama sends his surrogates before the cameras to refer to Israel's Prime Minister as "ungrateful," or castigate Israel for permitting Jews to build homes in Jerusalem on land they own and for permitting Jews to exercise their legal rights to their property -- simply because they are Jews.

Israel is the US's most important ally in the Middle East. As such, it deserves to be treated well by the US — all the time. Any move to treat Israel with contempt is an unprovoked hostile act and therefore inexcusable.

So too, US Jews have a right to make an honest living doing anything they wish — including working on Wall Street or owning a casino in Las Vegas. Jews have a right to be treated with respect by the US government. They should not have to be concerned about having their reputations maligned by politicians who use anti-Semitic tropes to gain political advantage.

Obama's contemptuous vilification of Israel and successful American Jews make him bad for Jews specifically. Just as the Dunham ad exposes his underlying hostility towards women and so makes clear that women's interests are imperiled by his presidency, so Obama's repeated hostile treatment of Israel and American Jews make him a specific danger to Jewish interests.

Many would-be deep thinkers have proclaimed that the Presidential election is a choice between two competing narratives. But that isn't an accurate description of the race.

Only Republican nominee Mitt Romney is presenting a narrative. In his narrative, the US faces very difficult problems in domestic and foreign policy alike. Romney has laid out his priorities for which problems he wishes to contend with, and has presented policies he will adopt to do so if he is elected next Tuesday.

On the other hand, by Obama's telling, the real problems America faces are all the result of the empowerment of his political opponents and America's allies.

Benghazi wouldn't be a problem if his political opponents weren't talking about it.

Jihadists aren't a problem. The problem is the people who say they are a problem.

The national debt isn't a problem. The problem is the "fat cat bankers."

Women will vote for him because we are dimwitted sex objects. And Jews will vote for him because we are taken in by his occasional Borscht Belt schmaltz platitudes about Hanuka.

Heaven help us all if his contemptuous assessment of his countrymen is borne out next Tuesday.


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JWR contributor Caroline B. Glick is the senior Middle East Fellow at the Center for Security Policy in Washington, DC and the deputy managing editor of The Jerusalem Post, where her column appears.


© 2012, Caroline B. Glick