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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 Feb 1, 2012/ 8 Shevat, 5772

Mitt Romney's trouble is his near-perfection

By Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | When a friend was writing a novel, he was concerned that his protagonist was too perfect.

People can’t identify with perfection, he said. For the character to be sympathetic, he needs to have a flaw. He needs an injury or a wound of some sort so that people can identify with and care about him.

“Why don’t you give him a limp?” I suggested, thinking of my own bum leg from a long-ago car accident. And thus, the character, an otherwise near-perfect man — good-looking, smart and talented — began to walk with a slight pause in his gait. To the reader, it was love at first limp.

Literature often reveals what life occludes, and the man with a limp provides clues to why people are so reluctant to support Mitt Romney despite his picture-perfect résumé of skills and accomplishments. We keep hearing that he’s “too perfect” and that so-called “ordinary Americans” can’t identify with him. Indeed, there is something vaguely unfamiliar about Romney.

Handsome, rich and successful, he is happily married to a beautiful wife, father to five strapping sons and grandfather to many. At the end of a long day of campaigning, his hair hasn’t moved. His shirt is still unwrinkled and neatly tucked into pressed jeans. He goes to bed the same way he woke up — sober, uncaffeinated, seamless and smiling in spite of the invectives hurled in his direction.

What’s wrong with this guy? Nada. Which is precisely the problem. Romney could use a limp.

To humanize him, helpful critics have suggested that he smile less during debates and try to show a little anger. Thanks to a new coach, he has become more aggressive and has begun punching back. Even so, audiences know instinctively that this is not the real Mitt. He’s just not that mad, and why should he be?

He has earned enough money never to have to work again. His investments produce multiples of millions in barely taxable income. When he looks in the mirror, he gets to rest his eyes on a relentlessly handsome face.

For most everyday Americans, life is less tidy. Half have been or will be divorced. Someone in the family is an alcoholic or a drug user. Most can barely pay their bills, and there’s not much to look forward to. When most Americans of Romney’s vintage look in the mirror, they see an overweight person they don’t recognize.

The idea that they might put some of their investments in the Cayman Islands is so far beyond the realms of imagination and experience that Romney seems mostly a creature of fiction.

It isn’t that Romney can’t connect with people, as has been pronounced repeatedly. It is that people can’t connect with him. This also helps explain why the far less perfect Newt Gingrich can attract support against all reason, or at least against all reasonable expectations.

Gingrich the serial husband, whose marriages merged one into another; his questionable ethics and cosmic grandiosity are by now familiar. Though smart, he is often unwise — morally lapsed and physically undisciplined. By those measures, he seems pretty much like most everyone else — fallen, but who isn’t?

Mitt Romney, that’s who.

Metaphorically speaking, Gingrich has a limp that makes it easier for voters to identify with him. For reasons more emotional than rational, we imperfect humans tend to be attracted to others more like us than not. But it is entirely possible that we are wrong and should examine this template of behavior before selecting a president.

Is it really necessary that a president be like the common man or woman? It is possible to want to do something about poverty, unemployment and debt without having experienced them. The desire to eradicate cancer does not rely upon one’s having suffered it.

Having a common touch is certainly helpful in politics. We greatly admire those who are equally at ease with kings and paupers. But these skills may be less important than they seem when it comes to problem-solving. Ultimately, the nerdy, disciplined numbers-cruncher who has turned around failing businesses for a living might have a greater palliative effect on the nation’s ills than someone who, by virtue of his own transgressions, feels others’ pain.

It seems the question for voters is not whether they can forgive Romney his imperfections, which is most often the case in politics, but whether they can forgive him his perfections.

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