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 Oct. 19, 2007 / 7 Mar-Cheshvan 5768

We'll always have Paris — and Pam, and Madonna ...

By Jonah Goldberg

Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | "I paid off a poker debt with sexual favors, and I fell in love," former "Baywatch" star Pamela Anderson told Ellen DeGeneres of her new beau earlier this month. "It's so romantic. It's romance."

Indeed. What a shame Audrey Hepburn isn't available to turn this hooker-with-implants-of-gold story into the date movie of the year.

In case you don't know the story: Pamela Anderson, who made her name as a centerfold and faux lifeguard with built-in flotation devices, has gotten hitched to Rick Salomon, whose greatest accomplishment was surreptitiously videotaping himself having relations with Paris Hilton. The film, "1 Night in Paris," was seemingly timed to coincide with the launch of Paris Hilton's new TV show, "The Simple Life," which featured the millionaire heiress trying to comprehend how working-class people get through their lives without the benefit of a publicist, chauffeur, stylist, etc. A new edition of the tape, complete with "collectible prison packaging" to take advantage of her recent stint in the Stoney Lonesome, recently hit the market. She reportedly gets a director's credit.

Anyway, to show that there were no hard feelings, Paris sent the newlyweds a video camera as a wedding gift with the note, "Congrats Mrs. Salomon, but be warned ... love Paris." Pam has good reason to be sensitive about such things. Anderson's pornographic home video of her and her first husband, rocker Tommy Lee, largely started the celebrity sex-video craze in the first place.

I could go on, but I already know what you're thinking: Classy people.

So let me switch gears and share with you the plight of the cultural conservative. If I were to write a column condemning the commodified harlotry of all this, I would be the bad guy.

It seems like the entire culture has adopted the "turn-ons" and "turn-offs" from one of Anderson's centerfold bios. Turn-ons: kids, animals, good food, good times. Turn-offs: uptight squares, scolds and all-around "meanies."

Every few years, I write a column about Madonna, not because I'm a particular fan or foe, but because she typifies the bind conservatives are in. Madonna pioneered a certain kind of slattern chic in the 1980s and early 1990s. But as she got older and had kids, she grew up — a little. She said she was embarrassed by some of her earlier exploits. To a sycophantically sympathetic press, she announced that she was going to be a good mom, not "the Material Girl."

Actually, she made these announcements fairly regularly, perhaps because she kept falling off the maturity wagon. In response to one such revelation, ABC News proclaimed: "She was in the pages of Playboy, published her own book on sex, and kissed Britney Spears in a live stage performance, but Madonna tells ABC News' 20/20 she may be through with propelling her celebrity with sex."

When a woman pushing 50 who looks like she's been working out in a Bolivian prison yard declares she won't use her sex appeal as a marketing tool anymore, maybe it's a tad less courageous than all that? I hear Abe Vigoda just announced he won't be touting his buns of steel to peddle his line of Old Man Pants either.

Anyway, I'm straying from my point. For years, conservatives criticized the likes of Madonna for proselytizing commercialized decadence, and conservatives routinely came out the losers. The press, generally being liberal, disliked the perceived censorial uptightness of conservative "culture warriors." The press, also being professionally and personally infatuated with celebrity, instinctively defended stars over the meanies, because stars boost ratings and get you into glamorous parties. The meanies stay home with their kids.

But here's the thing: Conservatives were right about Madonna, and even Madonna has partially admitted as much. The problem is that Madonna — like Hilton and Anderson — is irrelevant. These celebrities can afford their sins or, if you prefer, their mistakes because they're rich and famous. Madonna told one interviewer that she's never changed a diaper. How many "working moms" can say that?

What matters is the signal such people send.

Forget the question of "bad" versus "good" for a second. These people got rich by glamorizing behaviors and values normal people simply cannot afford. The working-class teenage girl who tries to follow in Madonna's or Paris' or Pam's footsteps isn't going to follow them into the pages of People magazine. She's going to follow those footsteps straight off a cliff. And yet, the bad guy in our culture is the person who says so.

I don't want to restore Puritanism. But would it really be so terrible if more people pointed out that prostituting yourself over a poker debt and then marrying the John isn't merely unromantic, it's not even something to brag about?

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