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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 July 14, 2008 / 11 Tamuz 5768

Foes and allies strive to peg a shifty Obama

By David Broder


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | John McCain is the candidate who actually had experience as a wartime flier, but Barack Obama is the one who has most successfully adapted a favorite tactic of those intrepid aviators. When the pilots were over a target heavily defended by antiaircraft guns, they would release a cloud of fine metal scraps, hoping to confuse the aim of the shells or missiles being fired in their direction.

In the weeks since he effectively clinched the Democratic presidential nomination, the Illinois senator has done a similar trick, throwing out verbal hints of altered positions on any number of issues. This is creating quandaries for the Republicans who can't figure out where to aim.

In their effort to embarrass him, Republicans ask: Who is the real Barack Obama? Is he, as he claims, a fresh face, heralding a new era of post-partisan politics, or a cynical old-style pol making poll-driven adjustments with scant regard for principles? A protectionist or a free-trader? A corporate-basher or an ally of interest-group contributors? Is he a doctrinaire liberal, disguising himself as a late-blooming centrist?

Last week, the Republican National Committee, in a statement cataloguing some half-dozen recent Obama "flip-flops," threw up its hands without offering answers. The McCain campaign issued its own list of Obama's changed positions; it totaled 17 items but confessed that "nobody knows what Barack Obama truly believes."

I can do no better, and I confess that it is only speculation to suggest that Obama's recent performance is motivated by a desire to confuse the opposition. Candidates often change their emphasis, if not their basic positions, once they shift from running against others in their own party primaries and start thinking about a general election with millions more voters of all ideologies poised to weigh in. McCain has done some of that himself, most notably in the week when he campaigned in the traditionally Democratic territories of New Orleans; Selma, Ala.; and Appalachia.

But Obama's case is more challenging than the typical candidate's post-primary adjustment. For one thing, he is more opaque than the usual nominee. No one in recent decades has emerged as the party standard-bearer from so truncated a political career: four years in the U.S. Senate, during which he has yet to lead on any major domestic or foreign policy issue, preceded by largely anonymous service in the Illinois state Senate.

There have been few occasions when Obama's professed beliefs could be tested against his action. And in the fight for the nomination, virtually no issues emerged on which Obama's stands were seriously challenged by his opponents.

He won by convincing a narrow majority of Democratic voters that he could mobilize otherwise distrustful and alienated citizens with his promise to change Washington and to introduce a more open and less partisan brand of politics. Because his personal credibility was such a key to his success — and remains so — the changes now occurring in his positions have a significance far beyond themselves.

Few, if any, of those inclined to support him have been so deeply offended by his readiness to "refine" his pledge to withdraw U.S. forces from Iraq in 16 months or his opting out of the public finance system he had once pledged to use (to cite the first two items on McCain's bill of particulars) that they are thinking of switching sides.

Obama will be in trouble only if the pattern continues to the point that undecided voters come to believe that he has a character problem — that they really can't trust him. As Peter Hart, the Democratic pollster, repeatedly reports from his focus groups with independents, this campaign turns much more on voters' struggle to size up Obama than it does on McCain.

Obama is making it hard for the Republicans to figure out how to attack him. The risk for him is if he also frustrates the voters who need to understand what makes him tick. They don't elect enigmas to the Oval Office.


In my July 10 column, I butchered the history of the War Powers Act of 1973, saying it was signed by the president when it was actually passed over Richard Nixon's veto. I also mistakenly said it set a limit of 30 days for a deployment not backed by a declaration of war, when it was actually 60 days. In any case, the law has yet to be invoked.

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Previously:

07/10/08: Fixing How We Go to War
07/07/08: Decider on the High Court
07/03/08: One Nation No More? Civics Needs a Boost, but Our Identity Endures
06/30/08: Dumbing Down the Presidency
06/26/08: Voting's Neglected Scandal
06/23/08: Why don't we know what makes Obama tick?
06/19/08: Foreign Policy's Best Hope
06/16/08: Perot, Back On the Charts
06/16/08: The Many Gifts of Tim Russert
06/12/08: Why Hillary played the womyn card
06/08/08: Eclipsed by the Adventures of Hillary
06/02/08: Obama in retreat
06/02/08: Reality vs. the Mythmakers
05/29/08: Hamilton Jordan's Message to Obama
05/27/08: Let the Veepstakes Begin
05/19/08: The mental exercise of placing Obama in the Oval Office requires more imagination than did moving Reagan from the silver screen to Pennsylvania Ave.
05/15/08: For Obama, a Lost Moment
05/12/08: The price of delay
05/08/08: Phoniness and inevitability
05/05/08: Winning by destruction: An insider reveals the Hillary game plan
05/01/08: Candidates' high-mindedness is rooted in religiosity; but Hillary and McCain don't have hater as inspiration


© 2008, by WPWG

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