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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 April 6, 2007 / 18 Nissan, 5767

Heart and Sowell

By Mona Charen


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | This may be the most unlikely tale of a high school dropout you will ever read — and the most satisfying. Thomas Sowell (he went back to school after testing the market's receptivity to a skill-free youth of 16) is one of those rare people who is so organized that he kept copies of all of his letters even before the days of e-mail and computers. We are the richer for it. In his new book, "A Man of Letters," Sowell has mined his files to offer us keen insights into our nation's recent history and into the soul of an extraordinary man.


Like most young intellectuals of his generation, Sowell began his adult life as a leftist. But he was prematurely wise. By 1962 he was already showing impatience with the twaddle peddled by left-wing admirers of Third World despots. Responding to an article about Cuba and Ghana, Sowell wrote, "Perhaps there can legitimately be double standards of morality . . . but there can never be double standards of truth . If, for example, we are justified in saying that tyranny in Ghana is serving a noble purpose, we are still not justified in saying that it is not tyranny."


Regarding Castro, Sowell wrote, "I think there ought to be a damn sight closer scrutiny of the sweeping assumption that a noble purpose is being served just because someone is reciting our favorite catchwords while he goes around butchering people. . . . You mention, for example, the brutalities of the Batista regime and Castro's killing of ex-Batista men. . . . In fact, the shooting of ex-Castro men is a far more significant development as an indication of what this regime is and where it is going."


Dr. Sowell spent many early years in and out of academia (Cornell, Brandeis, UCLA), eager to improve the lot of black students in particular. But as he witnessed the civil rights movement morph into a grievance and spoils system, he resisted. To a promising young woman student, Sowell wrote: "I certainly don't think there is anything naive about wanting to improve a world that is full of crying problems. My interest in Howard University is certainly not unconnected with the fact that it is a Negro school . . . . Yet . . . . It is so easy to play fairy godmother and so heart-breakingly difficult to get people to make the painful adjustments in themselves which are necessary for any permanent improvement. Let us face it — most people are pretty damned satisfied with themselves the way they are, though they would like to see lots of improvements in the world around them."



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Dismayed and disgusted as he was by the drift toward bullying, intimidation and anti-intellectualism that gripped American society and particularly American campuses, Sowell rejected a number of teaching offers at leading universities. In 1969 he wrote, "These are certainly times that are trying Sowell. I finally got my Ph.D. in December, just when it became virtually worthless, with the academic scene being what it is. . . . My best offer came from the University of Wisconsin . . . . I am reliably informed that the militants have already made up their list of 'Uncle Toms' among the black faculty there, and it takes very little to qualify. The people who really sicken me are the white liberals who promote and romanticize this kind of thing. . . . "


When Swarthmore College wrote to Sowell expressing interest in hiring "a black economist," his response combined humor with coruscating indignation: "Surely a labor economist of your reputation must know that unemployment among black Ph.D.s is one of the least of our social problems . . . . Your approach tends to make the job unattractive to anyone who regards himself as a scholar or a man . . . . You and I both know that it takes many years to create a qualified faculty member of any color, and no increased demand is going to immediately increase the supply unless you lower quality. Now what good is going to come from lower standards that will make 'black' equivalent to 'substandard' in the eyes of black and white students alike?"


And finally, the grubby reality: "You and I both know that many of these 'special' recruiting efforts are not aimed at helping black faculty members or black or white students, but rather at hanging on to the school's federal money. Now, I have nothing against money. I have not been so familiar with it as to breed contempt. But there are limits to what should be done to get it, and particularly so for an institution with a proud tradition . . . . "


Interspersed among the pungent social commentaries and amusing tidbits (he wrote to Justice Clarence Thomas commiserating about a Dallas Cowboys loss with his "favorite misquote from Robinson Crusoe: 'I don't like this atoll'"), Sowell has also included highly personal letters to friends and family, some of which will bring tears to your eyes. Hats off to an intellectual black belt with a warm and sensitive heart.

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© 2006, Creators Syndicate

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