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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 1, 2011 / 29 Sivan, 5771

The GOP's ideal America

By Michael Gerson



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Speaking recently to the Republican Leadership Conference, Rep. Ron Paul raised an overlooked issue in American politics. The federal government, he warned, is imposing a regime of oppressive pasteurization. To cheers, Paul said, “I think we ought to vote for the right to drink raw milk!

Never mind that the heating of milk to 161 degrees, common in America since the 1920s, kills brucellosis, tuberculosis and a variety of harmful bacteria. Americans, it seems, are being simultaneously deprived of healthy enzymes and of liberty.

One test of a presidential candidate is how he or she describes an ideal America. For some, it is a nation without homogenization. But what about the other Republican contenders?

Every candidate in the current field accepts the goal of reversing the Obama era. In 2008, the federal government spent $3 trillion; in 2011, it will spend $3.8 trillion. Federal spending has jumped from 20.7 percent of gross domestic product to 25.3 percent. Federal debt held by the public is twice what it was in 2008. This path is unsustainable.

But should it also be a Republican goal to return America to a time before the Great Society? In 1964, Barry Goldwater found the whole concept of Medicare to be excessive. “Why not vacation resorts?” he asked. “Why not a ration of cigarettes for those who smoke and of beer for those who drink?” In February, Rep. Michele Bachmann seemed to identify with this tradition. Existing Medicare commitments should be honored, she argued, but it would be necessary to “wean everybody else off.”

Among the significant developments of the young Republican primary season is Bachmann’s revision of these views. She has recently been critical of the Medicare portion of Rep. Paul Ryan’s House budget. Her vote for that legislation, she insists, has an “asterisk” or a “proviso.” “I’m concerned about shifting the cost burden to senior citizens. . . . That’s why I put that asterisk out there.”

The Bachmann Proviso shows that even the Tea Party favorite has a realistic sense of political risk. But this distancing is partially unfair to Ryan. While it is true his plan would eventually require most seniors to pay a larger portion of their health costs, it would also provide subsidies to low-income seniors to cover higher out-of-pocket expenses. And a fiscally sustainable safety net is more compassionate than a generous system that collapses.

Apart from Ron Paul, Republican candidates do not recommend a retreat from the federal role in providing health care to the elderly. They propose, instead, to achieve that goal through premium supports, individual choice and market competition. This is the guilty secret of the Republican presidential field: From Huntsman to Bachmann, the candidates accept many of the goals of the Great Society, if pursued by conservative and free-market methods. They are following the example of Ronald Reagan, whose early opposition to Medicare ended in a politically realistic accommodation with the program. (One reason Paul has described Reagan’s presidency as a “failure.”)

The ideological certainties of the conservative movement often contrast with the conduct of conservative politicians. Activists may regard the New Deal as soft socialism, but conservative politicians do not seek the end of Social Security or unemployment insurance. Conservative talk show hosts may call the progressive movement of the late 19th century a “cancer in America,” but most presidential hopefuls do not oppose antitrust legislation, the direct election of senators or the inspection of meat-packing plants.

Which brings us back to Ron Paul, who may well oppose federal efforts to prevent the sale of rotting meat. After all, he accuses Abraham Lincoln of starting the Civil War in order to strengthen the “centralized state” and to “get rid of the original tenet of the Republic.”

Paul is sometimes viewed as a naive but fearless conservative role model — implying that other Republicans are timid or compromised. But the project of reversing the Great Society, the New Deal and progressive reform is not ideological purity; it is socially disruptive radicalism. Conservatives hold a strong preference for individual freedom. But they traditionally have recognized a limited role for government in smoothing the rough edges of a free society. This concern for the general welfare helps minimize the potential for revolutionary change, while honoring a shared moral commitment to the vulnerable.

It is neither necessary nor healthy for conservatives to reject Lincoln or Louis Pasteur.


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Previously:



03/04/11 The last doughboy and the emergence of a great nation
03/01/11 Conservatives shouldn't be so surprised by freedom
02/22/11 The progression of pain
02/18/11 The seriousness primary
02/11/11 Do Egypt's protests mean American decline?
01/27/11 No-bend Obama
01/21/11 Two good arguments for civility -- and passion -- in politics
01/11/11 Obama's staff changes give him a second chance
01/11/11 Is Arizona shooting an empty search for meaning?
01/07/11 WikiLeaks gives dangerous ammunition to a tyrant
01/04/11 Michael Vick: Symbol of the second chance
12/28/10 Social Security reform is the answer to Obama's problems --- and the nation's
12/21/10 When foreign policy realism isn't realistic
12/17/10 When it comes to politics, Obama's ego keeps getting in the way
11/26/10 Libs resort to conspiracy theories to explain Obama's problems
11/19/10 With Holder at the helm, detainee policy is a disaster
11/12/10 Blue-state budget crises spell even more trouble for Dems
10/19/10 Obama the snob
10/12/10 Seeds of victory in Afghanistan
10/05/10 Believers' remorse
10/04/10 Pound-foolish on national security
09/28/10 Babylon on the Potomac
09/27/10 Our reluctant commander in chief
09/21/10 Blue strongholds are becoming Democratic graveyards
09/17/10 For the GOP, a bittersweet brew from the Tea Party
09/15/10: Insanity's great enablers
09/13/10: The lost communicator
09/08/10: Will 2010 midterms be 1994 all over again?
09/01/10: Obama's economic wandering
08/27/10: Miracles from abroad
08/25/10: Address these issues in order to strengthen the Tea Party
08/20/10: The lost promise of Barack Obama
07/23/10: Obama's greatest nightmare
02/04/09: The Reality of Innocence
01/07/09: The Risks in Obama's Ambitions
12/31/08: Support Obama Will Need
06/13/08: Prince Charles, Organic Conservatism Icon
06/11/08: No longer a bankrupt political joke but still overshadowed
04/23/08: McCain's anger management
04/10/08: A Country for Old Men
03/06/08: Does the America Need a Hug?
03/06/08: Obama's First 100 Days
02/29/08: Words Aren't Cheap
02/22/08: He Said, They Said
02/20/08: Dying silently in Zimbabwe
02/15/08: Hillary's Unappealing Path
02/13/08: NATO's Afghan Stumbles
02/08/08: Why McCain Endures
02/06/08: One surge that led to another
02/01/08: In North Korea, Process Over Progress
01/30/08: Compassionate to the end


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