May 22, 2013
They launched the 'Arab Spring' but now yearn for the good old days of a strongman
May 20, 2013
Richard A. Serrano: Is Meir Kahane's assassin now a changed man?
Genetic copies of living people from embryos no longer science fiction
Jewz in the Newz by Nate Bloom :
The Kosher Gourmet by Cathy Pollak:
Jews Inducted into Rock Hall of Fame; Anton Yelchin co-stars in New "Trek" film; Kutcher (but not Kunis) visits Israel; Jewish TV Star Praises Jewish Rap Star
WARNING: This WALNUT CAKE WITH PRALINE FROSTING, perfect for afternoon coffee, is addicting
May 13, 2013
Rabbi Nathan Lopes Cardozo: Why the giving of the document that would permanently change the world could only be done in desolation
David G. Savage:
Church-state, literally? Supreme Court weighing public school graduation in a church
May 10, 2013
Rabbi Berel Wein: Be all that you should be
May 8, 2013
Peter Ford: Why China is welcoming both Israel's Netanyahu and Palestinians' Abbas
Obama administration quietly backs out of appeal over new contraceptive mandate
At Kerry-Putin meeting, US-Russia relations thaw --- a tad
The Kosher Gourmet by Leela Cyd Ross :
Almost too pretty to eat, this colorful salad with Sicilian inspiration will tickle the taste buds and delight your visual sensibility
May 6, 2013
May 3, 2013
Kids, kittens the Same?
With employee perks at struggling Internet pioneer Yahoo! it's hard to tell
Artificial kidney offers hope to patients tethered to a dialysis machine
April 29, 2013
Poland's new Jewish museum celebrates life, doesn't revisit Holocaust
Terrorism in America: Is US missing a chance to learn from failed plots?
Boston Bomber's 'Svengali' Revealed
Tiny satellites + cellphones = cheaper 'eyes in the sky' for NASA
April 26, 2013
Clifford D. May:
Defense in the Age of Jihadist Terrorism
Sharon Palmer, R.D.:
How to feel your best -- with plenty of energy, a healthy weight and optimal mental and physical function -- without driving yourself batty
April 24, 2013
Jewish World Review
August 28, 2009 / 8 Elul 5769
A Test of Kennedy Currency
If you read the newspapers or watch the news, you will encounter a long list of accomplishments by the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy. One thing you're less likely to hear, however, is that in his death, Kennedy proved Rush Limbaugh right.
In March, the talk-show host and bete noir of progressives everywhere said that the health care bill wending its way through Congress would eventually be dubbed the "Ted Kennedy Memorial Health Care Bill." At the time, the official position of the Democratic Party was outrage and disgust.
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee initiated a petition drive demanding that the Republican Party formally denounce Limbaugh for his "reprehensible" and "truly outrageous" comments.
Fast-forward to a few hours after the announcement of Kennedy's death. Suddenly, naming the bill after Kennedy would be a moving tribute.
ABC News reports that "the idea of naming the legislation for Kennedy has been quietly circulating for months" but was kicked into overdrive by Sen. Robert Byrd, the Democratic Party's eldest statesman. Intriguingly, this suggests that either Democrats already had the idea when Limbaugh floated it, which would mean their protests were just so much opportunistic and cynical posturing, or they actually got the idea from Limbaugh himself, which would be too ironic for a Tom Wolfe novel.
But that Kennedy's death should be marked by cynicism, opportunism and irony is not shocking, given that these qualities are now the hallmarks of the party he largely defined.
The determination of the Democratic Party to exploit Kennedy's death for political gain puts the political commentator who doesn't wish to speak ill of the dead in something of a bind. So let us be clear that there is no evidence whatsoever that Kennedy himself or any Kennedy would object to such a ploy.
Whether one calls it exploitation or heroic perseverance, the Kennedy dynasty's longevity is best understood as a response to fatal tragedies. When Jacqueline Kennedy learned of her husband's murder, she lamented Lee Harvey Oswald's inconvenient political views. "It had to be some silly little Communist."
Fortunately, her husband's handlers had things well in hand, orchestrating with a compliant media the grand fiction that Kennedy had somehow been a martyr to civil rights, taken out by right-wing "hate." The real JFK, who cut capital gains taxes and only reluctantly supported Martin Luther King Jr.'s March on Washington, had never been nearly as liberal as the posthumous legend created to give new life to liberalism and the Kennedy name.
According to the mythmakers, JFK would have pulled us out of Vietnam (and the Oliver Stones say that's why he was killed). Meanwhile, the real JFK boasted mere hours before his murder that he'd massively boosted defense spending and ordered a 600 percent increase on counterinsurgency special forces in Vietnam. The prior March he'd asked Congress to spend 50 cents out of ever dollar on defense.
Hence one of the great ironies of Ted Kennedy's career. He was the chief beneficiary of an inheritance from a brother whose views he didn't share.
Such contradictions never bothered Ted Kennedy, nor his fellow Democrats, when he was alive, so why should there be compunction now? After all, the Kennedys and the Democrats have mythologized and exploited the deaths of three brothers (and minimized the deaths of Mary Jo Kopechne and Martha Moxley) in order to protect the Kennedy brand. Naming a massive expansion of the federal government after Ted Kennedy, particularly when it was indeed his life's cause, seems entirely fitting and fair.
My only objection is the notion that somehow anyone but partisan Democrats should be expected to cave in to the "Do it for Teddy" bullying. To listen to some liberals, one gets the sense that conservatives should surrender to something that violates their fundamental principles out of deference to the very man liberals celebrate for never abandoning his fundamental principles. No one expected Ted Kennedy to become a champion of free markets out of deference to Ronald Reagan's memory.
Now, if liberals want to rally their own troops by putting Kennedy's name on the bill, that is their right, even if it will likely result in an even more unpopular bill than the ones now under consideration. I suspect, however, that they will be disappointed to discover that the currency of the Kennedy name purchases far less than it once did, thanks in large part to what Ted Kennedy did with it.
Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many 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
include "/home/jwreview/public_html/t-ssi/jwr_squaread_300x250.php"; ?>
Jonah Goldberg Archives
© 2006 TMS
Richard Z. Chesnoff
Frank J. Gaffney
Victor Davis Hanson
A. Barton Hinkle
Judge A. Napolitano
Cokie & Steve Roberts
Debra J. Saunders
J. D. Crowe
Ask Doctor K