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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 August 6, 2008 / 5 Menachem-Av 5768

The Gratingest Generation

By Thomas Sowell


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | If our era could have its own coat of arms, it would be a yak against a background of mush. This must be the golden age of endless and pointless talk.


Every sports events seems to be preceded by all kinds of talk — whether by athletes repeating cliches that we have heard a thousand times, announcers making pseudo-profound sociological observations, or fans rambling on incoherently.


Then after the contest come the childish celebrations, the second-guessing and still more cliches.


Even when the action is going on at grand slam tennis matches, there are interviews with celebrities who happen to be in the stands, while the play on the court is ignored by both, even though it is shown on the screen.


Theatrical hype on the part of both the interviewer and the celebrity are common.


Does it ever occur to media chatterboxes that people watch tennis because they want to see tennis, not hear about some celebrity's latest movie or TV series?


If those who lived during World War II were "the greatest generation," this must be the gratingest generation.


It's not just the constant meaningless chatter that grates. There is the incessant self-dramatization.


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Everybody knows about Manny Ramirez's hair styling. But there have been many other sluggers over the years, whose haircuts were never noticed. Does anyone remember Ted Williams' haircut or the haircuts of Mickey Mantle or Hank Aaron?


All those people are remembered for what they did, not how they looked.


Boxers and wrestlers must be the worst. Outlandish get-ups and behaving like badly raised brats have become the norm.


When you see old films of Joe Louis or Rocky Marciano, you see adults acting like adults— indeed, like gentlemen.


There was none of this making faces at an opponent before the fight or loudly boasting afterwards, much less taunting during the contest. In other words, you didn't have to act like a lout in order to be a boxer.


When Joe DiMaggio hit a ball that was caught up against the 415-foot sign in Yankee Stadium by a Dodger outfielder, at a crucial point during the 1947 World Series, DiMaggio briefly kicked the dirt in frustration while running the bases.


That was as close to an emotional outburst that DiMaggio ever came. That picture has been shown innumerable times, precisely because it was so exceptional for DiMaggio to go even that far.


Like so much that went wrong in American society, the new style of loutish self-dramatization began in the 1960s. When Muhammad Ali became heavyweight champion in 1964, it marked the end of the era when boxers simply did their job, collected their money and went home, usually after a few brief words.


Over the years, football players began carrying on with elaborate celebrations after every touchdown. Baseball teams developed pre-game rituals and post-game celebrations.


While this trend of self-dramatization is most visible in sports, it extends well beyond athletes.


Parents give their children off-the-wall names. "Mary" has long since lost its place as the perennially most popular name for girls.


There is a high turnover in what names are hot and which ones are not. Apparently everybody has to try to outdo everybody else, even when it comes to naming children.


Here, as in sports, superficial attention-getters have replaced achievements that speak for themselves. Indeed, the whole notion of achievement is downplayed, if not swept under the rug.


People who have achieved success are often referred to as "privileged," especially by the intelligentsia. Achievements used to be a source of inspiration for others but have been turned into a source of grievance for those without comparable achievements.


There have always been superficial dandies but they have not always been admired or regarded as models. Our society is worse off because they are.

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.

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