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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 31, 2009 / 10 Meanachem-Av 5769

The god who bleeds

By Jonah Goldberg




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | In one of my favorite episodes of "Star Trek," Captain Kirk is mistaken for a god by inhabitants of a planet of Native Americans (it's a long story). The illusion works for Kirk until a jealous shaman cuts Kirk's hand, revealing that the divine being is just a man after all. "Behold! A god who bleeds!" the shaman mocks, exposing Kirk as a fraud to the rest of the tribe.


It may sound like a stretch — and, let's be fair, it is — but I keep thinking of that episode when I look Barack Obama's poll numbers these days.


He's bleeding on every front. The latest Pew survey shows that only 38 percent of Americans approve of his handling of the economy. In the latest Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, fewer than half of respondents (48 percent) say Obama can be trusted to keep his word. Gallup has his approval rating at a new low of 52 percent, and Rasmussen has it below 50 percent for the first time.


On almost every domestic issue, polls show that support for Obama and his agenda is plummeting, and that the Democratic Party's advantages over Republicans on the economy, taxes, the deficit and health care have been erased or severely reduced.


All presidents go through rough patches, and Obama's no exception. Odds are his poll numbers will get better — and worse — in the years to come. All of this is typical.


But this misses a crucial point: Obama isn't supposed to be a typical politician. He was supposed to be The One. He was supposed to change Washington. Transcend race. Fix souls. Bake 12-minute brownies in seven minutes.


Oprah promised Obama would help us "evolve to a higher plane." Deepak Chopra said Obama's presidency represented "a quantum leap in American consciousness." Last month, Newsweek editor Evan Thomas proclaimed that Obama stood "above the country, above — above the world, he's sort of G-d."


Well, now he's the god who bleeds, and once you're the god who bleeds, it's hard to get the divinity back in the tube, as it were.


Obama undoubtedly has major accomplishments ahead of him, but in a real way the Obama presidency is over. His messianic hopey-changiness has been exposed for what it was, and what it could only be: a rich cocktail of pie-eyed idealism, campaign sloganeering and profound arrogance.


As president, he's tried to apply the postpartisan gloss of his campaign rhetoric to the hyperpartisan dross of his agenda. And he's fooling fewer people every day.


Indeed, the one unifying theme of his presidency so far has been Obama's relentless campaigning for a job he already has. That makes sense because that's really all Obama knows how to do. He's had no significant experience crafting major legislation. He has next to no experience governing at all.


But he's great at giving speeches, holding town halls and chitchatting with reporters. So that's largely what he does as president. The problem is that campaigning is different than governing. The former requires convincing promises about what you will do; the latter requires convincing arguments for what you are doing. He's good at the former, not so good at the latter. Or as columnist Michael Barone puts it, he's good at aura, bad at argument.


It's revealing that liberals suddenly want Obama to spare the god and use the rod. Specifically, as Dick Polman noted here yesterday, they want Obama to channel Lyndon Johnson (whom no one confused for a quantum leap in our consciousness). Liberal historian Doris Kearns Goodwin says she wants BHO to go LBJ: "to take charge, to draw lines, to pressure, to threaten, to cajole." Liberal activist Dean Baker says Obama should "get the list of every hardball nasty political ploy" that Johnson ever deployed.


As Polman rightly notes, this is crazy talk for the simple reason that Obama has nothing like LBJ's experience, skill set, or treasure trove of chits and political IOUs. Obama can no more decide to become LBJ than Carrot Top can decide to become Laurence Olivier.


Now, just as critics predicted, Obama needs on-the-job training to become a president, because he's a god no more.

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