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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

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 Sept. 20, 2007 / 8 Tishrei 5768

The Evolution of a Wisecrack

By Bob Tyrrell


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Forty years ago this autumn I began my professional life as an innocent procreator of wisecracks by founding The American Spectator, a magazine that I suppose is taking its place in American literature as one extended wisecrack. At the Spectator we have always seen a joke lurking where the humorless and smug perceive a sacred cow or a golden opportunity. This week it became clear that a joke is a dangerous thing — the humorless and the smug are in the ascendancy.


My most famous wisecrack has denied my fellow Americans the services of a lawyer who would surely be acclaimed in American history as one of our finest attorneys general, Ted Olson. Perhaps I should take a vow against ever again uttering a flippant or sardonic remark. From now on I may growl like the Hon. Patrick Leahy or snarl like the Hon. Harry Reid. In a moment of levity I referred to a series of Spectator news stories that were always factual and remain irrefragable as "the Arkansas Project," and though my friends laughed, Democrats under the Clintons' weird spell cowered and envisaged images of McCarthyism and the Red Scare. For a decade I have witnessed my harmless flippancy enter the history books as a political hate crime. This was not my intention.


Early in the Clinton administration, when the scandal-prone Forty-Second President of the United States was sweating somewhere between her Travelgate and her Filegate en route to his Monicagate, I decided that investigative journalists were going to have a field day as long as the Clintons held high office, testing the rule of law and attracting the attention of what are called the authorities. Thus I raised funds to improve the investigative reporting of the Spectator. What now sends hysteria through polite society as the Arkansas Project was initially labeled Expanded Editorial and Reporting. It was funded not unlike the funding of PBS' "Frontline," save for our superior record of accuracy.


Olson, having been on the Spectator's board of directors during the 1990s, has been twice implicated in the Arkansas Project by the likes of Leahy and Reid, once during his successful confirmation hearings for solicitor general and now while being considered as a nominee to head the Justice Department. As the project was an effort at reportage, and Olson is — merely to quote The Wall Street Journal — "one of America's finest lawyers," you can be sure he had no journalistic or editorial involvement in it. He may have given some legal advice, but it would have been minimal. We broke no laws. We did not even skirt the law. All we did was report what turned out to be the Clintons' misbehavior, misbehavior that is now on the historical record. Thus far in this era of the smug and humorless, it is not illegal to report the news. As The Wall Street Journal editorialized in defense of Olson, "committing journalism is not a crime. The Arkansas Project was never accused of breaking any laws, although the Clinton Justice Department did investigate the magazine over the campaign, which strikes us as a much creepier sort of partisanship than exercising one's First Amendment rights."


Actually there were charges. The American Spectator was accused of threatening violence and of witness tampering — both felonies — by the Clintons, their pliant attorney general, Janet Reno, and her collaborator, Deputy Attorney General Eric Holder. After reviewing these charges with the assistance of a grand jury, the government's special counsel concluded the accusations were "unsubstantiated or, in some cases, untrue." That has not stopped the ex-Boy President from repeating the witness-tampering charge in his memoirs and on the walls of his dubious presidential library. Thus does the Arkansas Project continue, not as a wisecrack but as a "dark episode" in American history.


The general complaint against Olson has been partisanship. But he would never be so partisan as to harass a small magazine for "committing journalism." One of his ripostes to his attackers last week was to note that Pulitzer Prizes are given for investigative journalism, not jail sentences, at least not in this country. Well, I expect no Pulitzer Prize, and after the Clintons' last round of attacks I received no jail sentence; but if I did, so what? Call me narcissistic if you will, but I have never been able to comprehend what is so unpleasant about solitary confinement.

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 Bob Tyrrell is editor in chief of The American Spectator. Comment by clicking here.

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