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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
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 August 28, 2008 27 Menachem-Av 5768

The Dem-olition man

By Michael Goodwin


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | DENVER — Dwight Eisenhower was speaking of war when he said: "Plans are everything -- before the battle is joined. Once it begins, plans are worthless."


But he might also have been speaking of the 2008 version of the Demolition Democrats.


The best-laid plan for a come-to-Jesus unity gathering here in the Rockies got off to a rocky start. Emotional though it was, the Ted Kennedy appearance Monday night never hit the crescendo organizers expected. And Michelle Obama's speech, while presenting an all-American portrait of the Obama family, drew decidedly mixed reviews otherwise.


It's not that there's a lack of energy among the delegates at the cavernous Pepsi Center. It's that much of it is being wasted on the blame game.


Pick an image of in-house fussin' and feudin' and it fits Dems like a glove. Circular firing squad, shootout in a lifeboat, Hatfields and McCoys, civil war.


The Dems came here to whip up the faithful against those evil Republicans, but they're spending an awful lot of bile on each other.


Bill and Hillary Clinton are, naturally, at the center of the discord. There is ample evidence to bolster the suspicion that neither would be heartbroken if Barack Obama lost to John McCain.


Yet their bold mischief would be made irrelevant if they were Obama's only problems. He has others, namely his own liberal background and thin resume, and the Clintons are exploiting the doubts about him that many Americans harbor.


All of which made Joe Biden's speech last night a key test of whether Obama can establish firm control over the convention and the party. While it is unusual to put such a burden on a running mate's speech, especially with Obama himself being such a gifted orator, the Clinton drama is raising the stakes on even lesser acts.


In a nutshell, Biden still has to persuade many Democrats that he, and not Hillary, deserved to be on the ticket. Frankly, it's still an open question, given the fact that her primary vote dwarfed Biden's. For many of her supporters, he got the spot through affirmative action for white men.


If the convention ends with significant grumbling that Obama goofed in his first and most important decision, the general election becomes an even-greater uphill battle.


Biden's challenge is complicated by timing. With Hillary speaking last night and Bill before him tonight, Biden will take the stage in a sea of Billary memories and emotions.


Can he tame them? Can he focus the energies back on McCain? Can he get the delegates, some of whom will have just had their cathartic moment of voting for Hillary, thinking of the future and not the past?


Equally important, can Biden avoid the gaffes and bombast that often taint his talent?


Those are not small challenges. Although the convention is a made-for-TV event, an infomercial for the Democratic product, it will fail on the small screen if the delegates in the hall are bored, distracted or unimpressed. Even phony energy, ramped up on cue, generally plays well on TV and is always preferable to no energy.


To get the adrenaline surging, expect Biden to become Joe the Butcher and serve up heaping slabs of red meat. Look for him to slice and dice the Bush years, tie McCain to every real failure and a host of imagined ones and to push every partisan button.


Although he will make continued efforts to "normalize" Obama as a mainstream American patriot, Biden's role as designated hit man against the GOP doesn't give him a lot of wiggle room. It's draw Bush and McCain blood, lots of it, or flop.


The slaughterhouse scenario won't be pretty, but it's the only way for Biden to make a real contribution toward uniting the party and proving he belongs on the ticket.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in Washington and the media consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.




Michael Goodwin is a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for the New York Daily News. Comment by clicking here.


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