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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

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 July 30, 2007 / 15 Menachem-Av, 5767

Light from the Prince of Darkness

By Suzanne Fields


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Good reporters are usually great storytellers because they have lots of stories to tell. Great reporters like Robert Novak can write great memoirs. I finished "The Prince of Darkness," his memoir of 50 years of collecting Washington stories, on the way to a barbecue where young and aspiring twenty- and thirtysomethings from the Hill, the White House and the Washington news bureaus were gathered to enjoy a summer's day and to engage in what all Washingtonians do most of the time — talk shop. Bob Novak's book quickly became the buzz.


Bette Davis's famous line in "All About Eve," warning friend and foe to "fasten your seatbelt, it's going to be a bumpy night," could have been the theme of this memoir. Bob Novak has had lots of bumpy nights, and he made the nights of the people he wrote about even bumpier. Here are the nuts and bolts of how Washington works — and sometimes doesn't.


That's why this is such a fascinating and instructive read for young and aspiring power players — and for those who marry them. This is where they can get a little understanding of the patience and determination required to cover and live in the inner sanctums of power. As a reporter, columnist and television pundit, Novak illuminates the territory with a bright and often garish light. It's not pretty, but it's real enough. There's true smarts and true grit, and tales of making friends of enemies — and sometimes of making enemies of friends — in the frenzied pursuit of knowledge, the currency of power in Washington.


There's lots here drawn from the front pages, including details of how Valerie Plame achieved her 15 minutes of fame. He was at the heart of what he calls "a trivial incident exaggerated into a scandal by the Left and its outriders in the new media." Trivial or not, he shows it as a textbook illustration of how to make a lot out of not very much.


For all of his abrasiveness in settling scores, he shows an unexpected humility behind the scenes in his taking the private measure of public men. Policy-makers and his colleagues of print and tube will be most interested in his descriptions of the hot connections of domestic and foreign policy, but equally fascinating are his own shadowy fears and failures otherwise shrouded in darkness. These include his regrets that he wasn't around much for his young children because he didn't think they were very interesting. Now there's the understated pride in the accomplishments of his adult son and daughter. His daughter worked for Vice President Dan Quayle and later for her father, joining the family business of columny. He fantasized that she would return to work for him after she married, but after four babies, "I'm still waiting."


The memoir offers a glimpse of the burdens a family must bear living with a Washington power player, particularly the burden of his wife, Geraldine, whose patience and forbearance made his career possible. When he learned that his wife was pregnant with their first child at the midpoint of a four-week reporting trip to South America, he was undecided about what to do. She had suffered one miscarriage and he thought it wise for them to return home, but he still had two weeks of scheduled appointments ahead. She preferred to stay with him despite acute morning sickness and questionable available medical care. He recognizes her incredibly generous gesture as emblematic of their relationship: He was "selfish"; she was "self-sacrificing."


Of the daughter born months later, who grew up to share his obsession with politics, he says, "I like to think she was influenced by her prenatal travels through South America, a riot in Buenos Aires, and the thin air of the Bolivian Andes." The mellower Novak, now 76, says with a grandfather's knowing grin: "My children love me and my grandchildren really love me."


Mr. Novak read deeply as an undergraduate, and it shows. He identifies with a character in Dante's "Inferno." Bertrans de Born was a medieval nobleman who raided and burned castles and generally wreaked havoc and ruin. In death, Dante consigns him to stand sentry at the gates of Purgatory, his severed head in hand, commemorating his life as a stirrer of strife: "Stirring up strife seemed to me a proper role for a journalist."


This is a self-centered, self-serving memoir, as memoirs inevitably are, often no kinder to himself than to the men he has written about for 50 years. It can be read as a caution to future power seekers, warning that they will have to weigh the price of strife, success and influence in Washington against love, friendship and the consolations of family. Buyer, beware.

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© 2006, Creators Syndicate, Suzanne Fields

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