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 May 12, 2009 / 18 Iyar 5769

The Titled and Entitled

By Cal Thomas

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | LONDON — There are titled people in Britain and then there are people who consider themselves entitled. The current scandal here is that the entitled are not the growing number receiving benefits from government, but the many members of Parliament whose highly questionable expenses are jaw dropping, even to the most cynical observer.

In a series of front-page stories last week in The Daily Telegraph, members of the majority Labour Party — including Prime Minister Gordon Brown and several cabinet ministers — had their expense vouchers published. The newspaper paid an unidentified source for the information, which was due to be released for free this summer.

Ordinarily, one might expect those who have been identified as milking the taxpayers for dubious personal expenses to express shame, or at least embarrassment, but instead the members are unrepentant and fighting back. Given the nature of the expensed items, it is doubtful they will persuade the British public, which continues to struggle financially.


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Barbara Follett, the minister of culture, creative industries and tourism, claimed 25,000 pounds in expenses for security because she doesn't feel safe living in the Soho district. Follett's husband is the best-selling novelist and multimillionaire Ken Follett. It apparently didn't occur to her to ask him to pay for her security detail, or move from a neighborhood she regards as unsafe to one in which she feels more secure.

Immigration Minister Phil Woolas expensed women's clothing and toiletries, including tampons and diapers. Parliamentary rules allow expenses only for items that are "exclusively" for the MP's use. Unless the married Woolas is holding something back, it will be difficult for him to explain how tampons are for his personal use.

Members are allowed expenses for second homes. Chancellor of the Exchequer Alistair Darling, however, switched his second home designation four times in four years, claiming the second home benefit each time. Darling recently proposed to increase the income tax to 50 percent. Perhaps he needs the money to help underwrite his expenses.

Margaret Moran, a parliamentarian from Luton South, expensed 22,500 pounds of taxpayer money, just days after she switched her second home designation, to repair dry rot at her and her husband's seaside home, a home located 200 miles from her constituency. Dry rot seems to be a useful metaphor for the condition of Parliament.

As if the outrageous expense claims were not enough, what the Telegraph calls "begging letters" from parliamentarians whose expenses were rejected expose the grip the entitlement mentality has on many politicians.

One Labour MP appealed a ruling against him this way: "From a natural justice perspective I feel a justifiable exception would be the fairest manner to deal with the current situation." He wanted a 3,100-pound reimbursement for a 40-inch Sony TV.

Here's another: "I object to your decision not to reimburse me for the costs of purchasing a baby's cot for use in my London home. … Perhaps you might write to me explaining where my son should sleep next time he visits me in London?" And another: "I would be very grateful if (the expenses) could be paid in the last round of the year on Friday. Otherwise, I might be in line for a divorce!"

Like relatives who overstay their welcome at holiday time, consuming food and drink and soiling your home, politicians in Britain and America come to believe they are entitled to other people's money simply because they win an election. When the relatives leave, the owners usually give the place a good cleaning. That's what Parliament (and Congress) need to do.

The Labour Party might have handed the Conservatives a powerful issue if the conservatives had not also been feeding at the public trough. The Telegraph is following up its stories on Labor with similar reports on the Conservatives. In addition to the second home reimbursements, one Conservative, Cheryl Gillan, the shadow Welsh secretary, claimed an expense for dog food. (She at least promised to reimburse the government). David Cameron, the Conservative Party leader and potential prime minister, (he leads in the polls) apparently escaped embarrassment as his claims have been called "relatively straightforward" by the Telegraph. This might allow him to take on the role of reformer in the coming election campaign.

Conservatives should bring real change to a system that allowed one Labour member to expense the cleaning of his swimming pool. That might be defensible if the member could walk on water.

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Cal Thomas Archives

JWR contributor Cal Thomas is co-author with Bob Beckel, a liberal Democratic Party strategist, of "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America". Comment by clicking here.

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