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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 April 30, 2012/ 8 Iyar, 5772

Jamming the presidency: Is Obama grown up enough?

By Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It was fun. It was odd. It was just a little bit . . . unseemly.

Doubtless you’ve heard plenty by now of President Obama’s slow jam, which, for all you drips out there, refers to a rhythm-and-blues ballad or down-tempo song. You, too, can find this on Wikipedia.

During a visit to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Obama and late-night comedian Jimmy Fallon pushed the president’s plan to preserve low student-loan rates through a rhythmic rendering of his talking points set to music. Fallon, playing a one-man Greek chorus, interspersed commentary, such as: “Aw yeah, you should listen to the president. Or as I like to call him, the Preezy of the United Steezy.”

It was, shall we say, a tad unusual for a sitting president. Wannabes will do nearly anything, as we’ve observed. But this particular skit went beyond the usual horn-tooting a la Bill Clinton — or even the awkward stand-up “Top Tens” that many candidates, including Mitt Romney, have endured for the sake of the sacrosanct “youth vote.”

One could argue that Obama’s Fallon appearance was quite well done, which it was — for that sort of thing. The president played straight man and said or did nothing objectionable. He was, in a word, presidential, to the extent one can be under such circumstances. Even at the end when he said, “Oh yeah,” it was . . . cool.

Yet the effect was nearly narcotic, so strange that cognitive dissonance doesn’t quite describe it. One had the uneasy feeling that something wrong was happening. The lead grown-up isn’t supposed to act that way.

On the other hand, as we who argue with ourselves like to say, if you can get kids to learn multiplication tables by setting them to rap, why not push student-loan relief with a little R&B? Maybe because you’re the Preezy of the United Steezy?

That Obama is a cool drink is no one’s revelation. He’s the ice tinkling in the glass. He’s Muhammad Ali to Romney’s, well, Romney. It’s hard to come up with a more quintessential un-cool guy than the presumptive Republican nominee. What can you do? There’s no book for cool, though if there were, Romney would have memorized and distilled it to a PowerPoint presentation.

Then again, who really cares? Once you’re beyond a certain age, cool becomes as attractive as a 60-year-old in jeggings. Young folks do get that you’re not actually young or cool, nor do they really want you to be.

Some of us learned this lesson along that garden path called Parenthood. The cool parents might be fun for an overnight — you can get away with more — but it’s nice to have a grown-up at home. Even the youth of America appreciate a grown-up in the White House. And though Obama is unfairly blessed with charm, pizazz and a natural athlete’s grace, he does not benefit necessarily from playing well with comics. The line is extra fine between humorous and silly.

That Romney couldn’t pull it off as well may be a surprise gift. He looked sadly uncomfortable while going through the paces with David Letterman, painfully reminiscent of Dustin Hoffman modeling scuba gear for his parents’ cocktail party. Then again, that may have been the only way to play it. Serious adults don’t do silly well.

The GOP is obviously mindful of the coolness gap and has issued a video ad in response to Obama’s late-night foray titled “A Tale of Two Leaders.” The ad juxtaposes Obama’s slow jam with Romney’s general-election kickoff speech that is both earnest and heartfelt. It does not hurt that Romney’s voice at times could be mistaken for Ronald Reagan’s. Implicit in the message (and the voice): Take your pick. Grown-up or cool dude?

The answer should be obvious except for the fact that many consider the president grown-up enough. His play-alongs are just for fun, after all, though overplaying one’s cool hand is risky as the very adult business of economic survival looms ever more ominously. A candidate’s or an incumbent’s popularity with the young will hardly assuage voter angst come November.

In the meantime, Obama would do well to pay attention to another comedian whose gravitas may be greater than the president’s among the late-night demographic. Said Comedy Central’s Jon Stewart: “You’re the president. You don’t have to do this [expletive] anymore.”

As for Romney, his safest bet is being proudly nerdy. As the cool know too well, nerds usually win in the end.

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