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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 March 6, 2007 / 16 Adar, 5767

Fixing our broken politics

By Cal Thomas


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Admit it, you hate politics: the gotcha games in which a quote can be taken out of context and used as a pretext for bashing one's opponent; the sound bites replacing reasoned argument; the focus groups and pollsters who tell candidates what to say instead of encouraging them to believe in something; the concentration on gaining and then maintaining power for its own sake; the enormous cost of elections, which transforms politicians into servants of those who give the most money.


Is it possible to have cleaner and more engaging politics that challenge the mind and offer real solutions to our problems, instead of crass appeals to our lower nature, the flip-flopping in order to garner favor with a particular interest group and the insincerity that seems to be behind it all?


Former Speaker Newt Gingrich believes it is and he has developed a compelling approach to new and better politics not seen since the days of Abraham Lincoln.


Last week, Gingrich and former New York Democratic Governor Mario Cuomo returned to the site of Lincoln's speech on Feb. 27, 1860 at Cooper Union in New York City. It was a speech many scholars believe made him president. The speech was substantive (Lincoln had researched it for three months at the library in Springfield, Ill.), it was more than 7,000 words and "dispelled doubts about Lincoln's suitability for the presidency and reassured conservatives of his moderation while reaffirming his opposition to slavery to Republican progressives," in the words of Harold Holzer's book, "Lincoln at Cooper Union."


The point of the Gingrich-Cuomo "discussion" was to bring serious people together for a lengthy conversation about things that matter. I watched it on the Web (you can see it at www.americansolutions.com). It is the polar opposite of the insult to our intelligence that passes for contemporary politics.


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Gingrich, especially, was brilliant as he laid out his vision and agenda for the future. He did not indulge in overstatement when he said, "This country today faces more parallel challenges simultaneously than at any time since the 1850s. And I believe there is a grave danger that our political system will not be capable of solving these problems before they take our society apart in ways that are very destructive."


Gingrich lamented the disappearance of what he called "the principle of seriousness," noting, "The (political) process is decaying at a level that is bizarre and it's a mutual synergistic decay between candidates, consultants and the news media. It's fundamentally wrong for the survival of this country."


Gingrich believes "We are in two different worlds: a world of stunningly rapid evolution in the private sector; and a world of stunning decay in bureaucracy." He pointed to New Orleans after Katrina as one glaring example of the failure of government at all levels, while also noting the dependent culture and expectations by many that government, alone, would help them escape a natural disaster.


To find the best leaders available, Gingrich says we must discard the current model of "cattle calls of 10 people offering 30-second solutions to Iraq (which) makes an absurdity of running for office." Instead, Gingrich proposes nine 90-minute dialogues between Labor Day and Election Day 2008 — one per week — in the spirit of the Lincoln-Douglas Debates, with only two candidates and a timekeeper/moderator. It would be broadcast, or carried on C-Span and the Web so that "people can decide who has the maturity, knowledge and values (that can) get us out of this mess."


In an e-mail exchange, Gingrich tells me he also plans to host nationwide workshops Sept. 27 and 29 on ways to transform all 511,000 elected offices in the country. And after that, he says, "I'll consider other possibilities," which I take to mean a decision on whether to run for president.


Watch the video of the Cooper Union conversation. Though Cuomo indulges in a lot of standard Democratic boilerplate rhetoric, even he rises to the occasion near the end, impressed by Gingrich's desire for real change, regardless of who gets the credit.


I don't know if Gingrich would make the best president, but after watching his "conversation" with Mario Cuomo, I doubt there is anyone who has thought more about the problems that confront us, or who has better ideas about how to fix them.

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.

JWR contributor Cal Thomas is the author of, among others, The Wit and Wisdom of Cal Thomas Comment by clicking here.


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