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December 2, 2014

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 Feb. 6, 2008 / 1 Adar I 5768

Silly talk

By Walter Williams


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It's not easy being me. I'm disturbed by statements that many Americans accept or don't question that are ludicrous, if not crazy. The terms "change," "agents of change" and "change agents" are being bandied by presidential hopefuls, their supporters and media commentators. I'd like to ask Americans listening to these people whether they are for or against change. For one to be for or against change, in any generic sense, qualifies as stupid, but maybe public stupidity is the stock and trade of politicians.


Politicians and media people don't have a monopoly on silly talk. How many times have you heard a weatherman say that the sun will try to come out later in the day? Sometimes their prediction turns out to be false and I wonder whether they would explain it by saying the sun didn't try hard enough. But it's not just weathermen who use teleological explanations, ascribing purposeful behavior to inanimate objects. I'm currently listening to CD lectures on particle physics and I'm told that strange quarks want to decay. I'm wondering how the professor knows what a strange quark wants; has he interviewed one?


But it gets worse and sometimes mildly unpleasant. An information operator might tell me that the number I want is 61o-777-8o7o. In the past, I have asked operators whether I'd reach my party by pressing the telephone's "o" key instead of the zero key. Operators have always told me that to reach my party, I'd have to press the zero key, whereupon I'd ask them, why did they say "o"; were they deliberately trying to sabotage my communication efforts? Our brief conversation begins to go politely downhill. Giving them the benefit of the doubt, maybe their source of confusion stems from the fact that the zero key doubles for the operator key.


But there's hope for the future. In my classes, when the opportunity arises, I give my students the definitions for "o" and zero. "O" is a vowel and the 15th letter of the English alphabet. Zero is defined as any number that when added or subtracted from another number does not change the value of that number.


I have other problems. When I attended Stoddart-Fleisher Junior High and Benjamin Franklin High schools, during the '40s and early '50s, teachers insisted on proper grammar, even though these schools were predominantly black and among Philadelphia's lowest ranked in terms of academic reputation.


How many times have you heard a statement such as "Tom and myself were working together"? When one of my students makes such a statement, I ask, "If Tom were not with you, would you say, 'Myself was working alone'?" Words such as "myself" or "himself" are reflexive pronouns. Their proper use requires reference to the subject of the sentence. For example, "Tom injured himself." A reflexive pronoun can also be used intensively for emphasis, "Tom himself was injured." In both cases, himself refers back to Tom, the subject of the sentence.


How about, "He is taller than me." Whenever I hear such error, I visualize Dr. Martin Rosenberg, my high school English teacher, with his hands on his waist, sarcastically asking a student, "Do you mean 'He is taller than me am'?" "Am" is the understood, elliptical, or left out, verb at the end of the sentence. The subject of a verb must be in the nominative case. To be grammatically correct, the sentence should be, "He is taller than I."


I wonder whether it's just me, or is anyone else bothered by silly talk? It might be that I'm getting old and out of touch, or it might be that I'm suffering from having received my education before it became fashionable for white people to like black people and nonsense was unacceptable.

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