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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 Oct 31, 2011 / 3 Mar-Cheshvan 5772

Herman Cain's smoking gun

By Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Herman Cain’s craggy-faced chief of staff, Mark Block, took a drag off a cigarette, blew smoke at the camera and sent the political class into coughing fits.

Theories about what Block intended have run the gamut from James Carville’s “He was drunk,” to amateurish campaigning, to post-modern genius. Me? I’m leaning toward accidental brilliance.

For those who missed it, and who therefore probably are not reading this, the ad is a 56-second clip of Block talking about his commitment to his candidate, not unusual in a chief of staff. He ends by taking the famous drag.

Did he just blow smoke in your face? Kind of, but he’s not just blowing smoke. He’s saying: “Don’t like me smoking? Tough.”

Odder than Block’s Marlboro-mannish toke was a final frame showing a tight shot of Cain looking at the camera with a “Here’s looking at you” expression that morphs into a beaming smile held somewhat longer than most people can manage without a twitch of self-consciousness. One nanosecond longer, and you expect the smile to turn into something else. Hysterical laughter? Maniacal cackling?

The message in Cain’s strangely funny and wildly successful, viral campaign ad may not have had a target in mind other than to steal the news cycle from Rick Perry’s flat-tax plan, which it did. But it hit a bull’s-eye right in the heart of a large demographic — older, bluer-collared voters who happen to be smokers, many of whom also resent the nanny state. What’s 50 million smokers times a $20 donation?

No one associated with the campaign is saying this, of course. In fact, Cain has denied any subliminal intent. “Mark happens to be a smoker. He knows it’s a bad habit, but he smokes,” said Cain. And though Cain had nothing to do with making the ad, he says that he supports the notion that Block should be Block, just as the candidate’s supporters insist, “Let Herman be Herman.”

No observer of political theater wants Herman to stop being Herman, but to claims of innocence one must protest: Nein, nein, nein. Not to give too much credit where none may be due, but Cain is now too deep in the dough to plead, “But I’m just a pizza man.” The ad was sheer, blinding brilliance, and denial will only serve to win him more fans.

The ad succeeded precisely because the sight of someone smoking in a political clip was so jolting. It was especially discombobulating to Americans under, say, 45. Except in movies, people smoking on camera is a relatively unfamiliar sight. No politician would dare smoke in public view. Older Americans, however, remember when cigarette commercials not only were commonplace on television, but TV personalities from Fred Flintstone to Johnny Carson smoked on air. To them, ol’ Block doesn’t look strange or ridiculous with that cigarette. He looks familiar. The nostalgia for a bygone America that Cain is tapping into includes an ashtray.

He’s also mining the widespread resentment of big government that has hit smokers hardest, casting them as pariahs and banishing them to the sidewalks. In the nanniest state of all, smokers have been kicked out of Central Park. Yet despite the war on smoking, 50 million Americans choose to enjoy a legal product — “choice” being the operative word that both Cain and Block have used in explaining the ad.

One doesn’t have to smoke (I don’t) or sympathize with smokers to think the nation’s regulatory bureaucracy has become a bit thick. What better way to make that statement than by blowing smoke in nanny’s face? The devil may care what people think, but Herman Cain doesn’t. He’s not a slick politician, he likes to say. He’s just a guy who knows how to run a company and let people be people.

The tape, indeed, was unpolished, but there was certainly nothing unsophisticated about the timing of its release. And there’s nothing dumb about Cain playing rope-a-dope while Mitt Romney and Rick Perry duke it out.

Those who want to take this country back, as Block puts it in his smokin’ flick, may well have found a kindred spirit in Cain, whose previously low-budget, skeletally staffed campaign suddenly seems like a gold mine of blind luck. He’s blowing smoke rings around the competition in polling (24 percent to Romney’s 21 percent), and the cash is flowing at a rate of $1 million per week. If you view political campaigns as entertainment — and you may as well — Cain’s crazy ad was a lucky strike.

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