In this issue
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 30, 2008 / 27 Tamuz 5768

McCain: The Best or the Wurst of Times?

By Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker
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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | John McCain and Barack Obama seem to occupy different universes.

In McCain's universe, the planets rotate around the sun in a predictable pattern. In Obama's universe, he is the sun — and we are but minor planets revolving around his brilliant countenance.

Rarely have the different orbits of these two men been more vivid than last week. While Obama was enacting the rapture before 200,000 worshipers in Berlin, McCain was grinding out economic policy with fellow earthlings at Schmidt's Restaurant and Sausage Haus in Columbus, Ohio. Its motto: "The Best of the Wurst!"

One is a Sun God — a young deus ex machine who entered the national stage just four years ago; the other is an old soldier rendered witness to the shifting tides.

Yet, despite Obama's amazing miracle tour last week through the Middle East and Europe — and despite McCain's recent missteps — the veteran is still not losing to the novice. Why not?

Given Obama's star power and incredible political machinery, he should be doing even better than he is. Though he gained a few points in the polls following his Berlin speech — and thanks in part to Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's seeming endorsement of Obama's withdrawal plan — a new Gallup/USA Today poll shows McCain leading by four points among likely voters.

The easiest explanation is McCain's familiarity against a relative newcomer. But another possible explanation may be more instinctual. Obama is too good to be true.

Like an "American Idol" winner, Obama seemed to spring from the wings a fully formed celebrity. He knows all the right moves but, like the young superstar, there's something missing. It's that intangible but palpable something that comes from paying dues.

"American Idol" winners are full of raw talent, but they're different than veteran performers who put in years showing up for auditions, suffering rejection and absorbing the humility that comes with it. When they finally land the lead role, they're prepared for it, but know better than to feel smug. They've earned it.

Being older and working longer don't necessarily make one better or more capable, obviously. Some people are blessed with greater talent, more intelligence, better looks. But Americans are skeptical of those who skip the line. Obama is like the guy who ignores the "merge ahead" sign, speeds along the outside lane past other drivers waiting their turn, and expects to be let in at the front.

Or so it feels sometimes.

When critics speak of Obama's youth and inexperience, that may be partly what they mean. Youth is lovely and inexperience isn't a character flaw. But Obama keeps sprinting ahead of himself. The presidential-looking seal on his podium was presumptuous. His overseas tour had the feel of a premature victory lap.

It was all a little too wonderful, a little too scripted, too managed and smacking of stagecraft. Everywhere he went, Obama was received as though he were the president, not the presumptive Democratic nominee.

Clearly, Obama's crowd-pleasing isn't viewed as a "problem," except to the McCain campaign. To team Obama, these are dreams come true, prayers answered, strategies ratified.

Yet to skeptical Americans — those not quite ready to declare Obama commander in chief — there's a deep-brain recoil in the presence of too much too soon. Adoring masses may inspire excitement, but they don't necessarily inspire confidence.

Where exactly does this pied piper lead?

That's the question with no clear answer. Obama's campaign plane features "CHANGE" in large black lettering, but change to what? A better world as one people? A world where the rise of oceans slows and the planet heals? A moment when we give hope to the world, jobs to the jobless, health to the sick, sight to the blind, mobility to the lame and life everlasting?

Amen to that, but how? And at what cost?

Obama may be easy on the eye and sonorous to the ear, but those qualities ultimately could hurt him among the less easily seduced. Come November, the more reassuring image in voters' minds may not be the charismatic figure preaching global unity to a mesmerized Berlin throng, but an old warrior hashing out less cosmic concerns among regular Americans in a German cafe in Columbus.

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