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 January 2, 2008 / 24 Teves, 5768

Trend obituaries for 2007

By Jonah Goldberg

Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Year's end is a time of many media traditions. For example, the tearing away of the last page of the calendar is all the excuse TV producers need to recycle hours of sensational video footage of dubious news value on the pretense that viewers need to relive the last 365 days. There's also the more honorable habit of remembering those who've died in the last year — something we could all do more of, particularly for our soldiers who were fighting abroad in our name.

And then there's the practice of retroactive "trend-spotting" (not to be confused with train-spotting, the preferred sport of Scottish heroin addicts). Trend-spotting has become something of an obsession with today's journalists, particularly at newspapers coping with the fact that they don't "break" news the way they did in the past.

I think it's time to marry some of these traditions. What we need are "trend obituaries." Hence, let us remember three of the cultural trends that died — or were at least mortally wounded — in the previous year, hopefully for the betterment of all mankind.

The discrediting of Hollywood "protest." Hollywood will never give up trying to make Americans think like Barbra Streisand, but 2007 showed that it might have a harder time raising money for the effort. In the last year, Hollywood dropped enough antiwar bombs to launch its own Shock and Awe campaign.

Robert Redford's star-studded "Lions for Lambs" was panned by critics and moviegoers across the ideological spectrum. But the bunker-buster of box-office bombs was Brian De Palma's "Redacted," which grossed a staggeringly paltry $65,000. ("Reno 911!: Miami" took in 312 times that at the box office in 2007.) Americans may not be keen on the Iraq war, but they appear even less keen on hearing Hollywood's opinion on it.

The demise of slattern chic. For nearly 40 years, feminists and others have championed female sexual assertiveness as a sign of self-confidence, independence and emotional maturity. Like so much in feminism, a defensible idea was carried to an indefensible extreme. In the 1980s, Madonna was declared a feminist icon because she "owned" her sexuality and treated men the way piggish men historically treated women. In the 1990s, an army of Madonna mini-mes were unleashed upon the land, each boasting to be even more sexually "independent" than the last.

In 2007, the allure of bimboism finally began to fade. Celebrity gold digger Anna Nicole Smith died from the drugs she needed just to cope with being Anna Nicole Smith. More important, Britney Spears, the reigning queen of slattern chic, was revealed to be not any sort of self-actualized young woman, bravely asking "Can you handle my truth?" Rather, we learned that she can't handle her own truth and that she resides in the gray hinterlands between mulish stupidity and mental defect. Adam Graham, columnist at the Detroit News, points out that it was no small feat for Spears to have her children taken from her. "If you'll remember, even O.J. Simpson kept custody of his children, despite DNA evidence that showed there was a 1 in 170 million chance he didn't murder their mother."

No doubt we are in store for various "comebacks" in years to come. But, hopefully more girls — not burdened by psychological problems of their own — will find more cautionary example and less glamour in the Spears tale of woe.

The democratization of porn. The year 2007 may have marked the beginning of the end of the Internet's greatest financial success story: hugely profitable pornography. While the mainstream media spent billions of dollars and nearly a decade trying to make a buck off the Internet, the porn industry raked in cash from the moment Al Gore invented the thing. But with the rise of sites such as "YouPorn," the online subscriber model is imploding. DVD sales are plummeting, too, and the adult video business is actually laying off workers (no pun intended). YouPorn is now the most-visited adult site in the world, and its traffic is growing at nearly 40 percent a month. Smut's not going away, to be sure. But its industrialization may finally be in retreat.

Of course, trend analysis is a subjective practice. No doubt there are many who are bitterly disappointed that Hollywood has once again failed to lift the nation to its own level of political enlightenment. And some may lament the fading of bimboism as the rise of fuddy-duddyism. And the long soup lines for porn directors may even bring a tear to someone's eye, — particularly Brian De Palma, as he may be looking for work.

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.

To comment on JWR contributor Jonah Goldberg's column click here.

Jonah Goldberg Archives

© 2006 TMS