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 Nov. 16, 2007 / 6 Kislev 5768

iPod democracy

By Jonah Goldberg

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | A recent poll of New York University students found that two-thirds of them would trade their right to vote in the next election for a year's tuition. And 20 percent said they'd give up their right to vote for the next president in exchange for a new iPod. Half said they'd sell their right to vote — forever — for $1 million.

Now, none of this really tells us anything new. We know that lots of Americans, particularly young ones, don't place much value on their right to vote. If they did, they'd vote more.

The left and the get-out-the-vote fetishists — often a distinction without a difference — argue that the answer to low voter turnout is to make it easier to vote. There's a certain logic here. The problem is that we've been making voting easier and easier for a long time now, and turnout has generally been declining.

A further problem is that voting voluptuaries think our democracy would be greatly improved if we got more reluctant voters to the polls. That's why, for example, in the '90s the left pushed Internet voting as a cure-all for democracy's ills. In 1999, Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. proclaimed: "I believe the Internet could make voting easier, more convenient and extremely efficient," presenting "a fantastic opportunity to reverse a 40-year decline in national voter turnout."

Last year, activist Mark Osterloh masterminded an Arizona referendum asking voters to make ballots double as lottery tickets. Osterloh admitted that he was trying to bribe people into the voting booths.

The thinking behind both gimmicks is largely the same. Jackson believed our democracy would be improved by hearing from people who couldn't be bothered to vote unless they could do it from their couch. The Arizona scheme worked on the assumption that our national discourse would be enriched if the crowd that hangs out at Keno parlors and liquor stores had more of a say.

And, sure as shinola, you can expect that any day now someone will argue that we should give away iPods at polling stations in exchange for casting a ballot.

Though they will deny it until they are blue in the face, part of what's going on here is the fact that behind the get-out-the-vote crowd's virtuous rhetoric, there is a powerful left-wing agenda at work. That's one reason why most of the Celebrity-Voter Education Industrial Complex is little more than a subsidiary of the Democratic Party. These people think that if everybody voted, America would lurch to the left. Osterloh says his real holy grail was universal health care, and he believes higher turnout would achieve it. And surely no one thinks Rep. Jackson believes increased voting would usher in a new era of limited government and tax cuts.

The liberal lion John Kenneth Galbraith summed up the attitude well 21 years ago when he declared, "If everybody in this country voted, the Democrats would be in for the next 100 years."

There's one hitch: it's simply not true. The best studies on this question suggest that at the national level, the political differences between voters and nonvoters are minimal. As election analyst Stu Rothenberg put it a decade ago, "There is no compelling evidence that nonvoters are so distinct from voters that they constitute a bloc ready to alter the fundamental balance of power in this country."

If more liberals took this fact to heart, they might be more open to a better way to improve our civic health: make voting more difficult. I can already smell the hate mail.

Look, I am as opposed as anyone to writing bigotry into electoral law. But perhaps the reason why so many people hold their votes so cheap is that their votes are, in fact, cheap. A heartbeat and existence on this planet for 18 years are the only qualifications to vote for American citizens.

What would be so bad about discrimination, properly understood? Not based on race or income, but on knowledge and commitment. Every election year, the race comes down to "the undecideds," many of whom are undecided because they don't pay attention, don't much care and are still vexed by the task of discerning the difference between Republicans and Democrats. These are our kingmakers?

Would it be so awful if voters had to pass the same test of basic civic literacy that immigrants must pass to become citizens? What if we made the right to vote something to brag about? Something to aspire to? Is high turnout among people willing to hawk their vote for an iPod really that much better than high turnout among people who hold their franchise dear?

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