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Jewish World Review
June 22, 2007
/ 6 Tamuz 5767
Before I forget …
Remember a couple of years ago when President Bush was going around the country pushing for his plan to "fix" the Social Security System? Congress was in agreement that Social Security was going broke but they differed with Bush on just how to fix it. This debate, on how to "save" our quickly depleting Social Security System, went on and on until finally….nothing happened. Nothing at all. Quick cut to today the president and Congress are both pushing to find a way to add tens of millions of people that have never paid a dime into the system, to the rolls of those drawing out of it. Hey, that's a good idea! Social Security is running out of money, so let's add millions of illegal immigrants who have never contributed into the system and let them draw out benefits from it! Can you believe this? Our honorable elected officials must think that most of us have zero memory or are just plain stupid. You couldn't make this stuff up, folks.
Our system of justice has a problem. Trial by a jury of one's peers was a great idea back in the days when everyone who was an American citizen was considered to be your "peer." In the past thirty or forty years however, people have been growing more and more "tribal" in their associations and in their thinking. It's called "group think" and our secular progressive society not only allows for it, it encourages it. People vote along group lines, i.e. women vote for women, blacks vote for blacks, Latinos for Latinos, and so forth. So when this "group think" carries into the court room you can pretty much throw justice out the window. If you don't believe it, just remember the O.J. murder trial. Tribal thinking is happening more and more throughout all aspects of our society, dividing us a people and weakening our ability to act as a unified nation. It's not only wrong-headed it's dangerous.
How come we haven't bombed Iran back to the 6th Century yet? Just a thought. Really, though, what are we waiting for? With every day that goes by they get closer and closer to having nuclear weapons. Iran floods Iraq with jihadists and weapons that kill Iraqi citizens and American soldiers. Iran harbors, trains and funds terrorists, namely Hamas, Hezbollah, and al-Qaeda. Iran's leader has said repeatedly that he intends to use nukes to annihilate Israel. They will certainly use them, either by detonation or by threat, against other Arab states and Western countries to advance their ambition to become top dog in the Middle East and control the vast majority of oil resources of the region. Other Arab nations have already said that they cannot just stand by so they will begin developing their own nukes in self defense. The entire area will explode if that is allowed to happen and ultimately the rest of the world with it. Iran needs to be addressed right now and you can spell addressed b.o.m.b.e.d.
The case for keeping the Sabbath was made recently in an editorial in The Wall Street Journal, where they quote from a new book "A Day Apart" by Christopher Ringwald. Mr. Ringwald says, "Taking a day of rest protects us from ourselves from our urge to always be doing, improving, earning, getting, spending, having, consuming all the ways we hurry on toward death." I think setting aside one day a week for "a day of rest" is a good thing too, but I was quite taken by that last part of his quote, "…we hurry on toward death." So true. It's life's practical joke you spend years struggling, working hard, attempting to accomplish something and in the end, what? You grow old, get sick, and die (probably with some degree of pain). It's not fair, but who said that life was ever fair? But that's why it is so important to take that one day out of the week for some kind of quiet reflection, to appreciate what we have and to give thanks. One day without work, without playing, without spending money, without knocking yourself out. Besides the religious aspects of honoring the Sabbath, it's good for your health, too a way to slow down and catch your breath. Good for one's soul and good for one's well-being. Sounds like a win/win situation to me.
And one final thing…several weeks ago I wrote a column on how the Los Angeles Times has been slipping both editorially and financially for the past couple of decades or so. And no matter how many changes they try, their circulation just keeps falling lower and lower. Well, I received a letter from a reader who thinks he has an answer to the Times' poor circulation. He said, "I know why it's going downhill. From what I have observed in recent years, fewer people in L.A. any longer read English. They can save this paper and increase its circulation by simply hiring a Mexican editor and printing the whole thing in Spanish!" You know, I think he may just be on to something. Are you listening Sam Zell?
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JWR contributor Greg Crosby, former creative head for Walt Disney publications, has written thousands of comics, hundreds of children's books, dozens of essays, and a letter to his congressman. A freelance writer in Southern California, you may contact him by clicking here.
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© 2006, Greg Crosby