In this issue

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 30, 2006 / 6 Elul, 5766

The bacteria of stupidity

By Tony Blankley

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Quite surprisingly, what may turn out to be the world's most fitting epigram in our time was uttered by none other than the official spokesman of the Hamas-controlled Palestinian Authority, Ghazi Hamad.

According to the Jerusalem Post yesterday, Mr. Hamad told his fellow Palestinians to dismiss Israel's responsibility for the growing state of anarchy and lawlessness in the Gaza Strip. He said it was time for the Palestinians to embark on a soul-searching process to see where they erred. "We're always afraid to talk about our mistakes. We're used to blaming our mistakes on others. What is the relationship between the chaos, anarchy, lawlessness, indiscriminate murders, theft of land, family rivalries, transgression on public lands and unorganized traffic and the occupation? We are still trapped by the mentality of conspiracy theories — one that has limited our capability to think."

I pray for this man's safety after he said such a sensible thing in such a lunatic place. But what takes his comments beyond a brave, local wisdom to a shrewd global insight was his epigrammatic conclusion: "We have all been attacked by the bacteria of stupidity." "We have lost our sense of direction and we don't know where we're headed."

That seems to sum the world up pretty well. From Iran, Lebanon, Gaza and Israel to the leadership of the Republican and Democratic Parties in Washington, to the governments of most of Europe and South America, to the local, state and federal officials responsible for Katrina recovery, to the U.S. State Department, it is hard to spot any leadership that is both sane and competent.

The leadership of Iran, Hezbollah, Al Qaeda and Venezuela seem politically competent, but they're nuts. Most Western leaders seem at least clinically not insane, but are wandering around bumping into large objects.

The West is being run, more or less, by the most incompetent generation of middle-aged white men since the 6th century — when they let the Roman Empire collapse without providing for an alternative (other than the Dark Ages.)

When did Americans forget how to fix things? From the Big Dig in Boston, to the Katrina aftermath (where the Corps. of Engineers announced this week that a year later the "repaired" levees couldn't hold back a Category Three hurricane), to our Southern border — things are broken and can't seem to be repaired.

Maybe the public schools should reinstate those wood, metal and print shop classes they required us boys to take until the mid-1960s. Apparently, we are devolving rapidly back to the Lemur stage of primate tool use skills (no offense intended to my Lemur friends who struggle on bravely without the advantage of opposable thumbs. We middle-aged white guys, on the other hand, seem to have become all thumbs.)

Not that we should let off the hook women and people of color who also hold positions of responsibility in government. The recently re-elected mayor of New Orleans's almost absurd incompetence and lethargy in the face of his duties puts him right up there with the white guys in Boston who have proven themselves utterly unable to build and maintain a tunnel. D— - it, prairie dogs build tunnels better than Bostonians.

And our once estimable secretary of state, Ms. Condoleezza Rice, has proven to be a more able concert pianist than conductor of diplomacy. I have talked to some very senior figures in Europe and here at home (Bush supporters, no less) who were staggered by the secretary's failure to nail down the terms and conditions for troop deployment with France before permitting the French resolution to go to a vote in the Security Council.

It used to be the attribute of adult homo sapiens that when they tripped, they got back up on their hind legs and moved on. But today, we seem to stay on all fours — often with our heads in rather unfortunate places.

For instance, after tripping in Lebanon, The State Department seems to have decided to start giving money away to Lebanese, willy-nilly, in some demented compassion contest with Iran's Hezbollah cutthroats. Conservative critics, equally dazed, demand not a penny be spent — as a matter of some principle.

The rather obvious competent policy option — that seems to be ignored by both sides — is to calculatedly offer Lebanon not only money, but things Iran can never provide: diplomatic, business, engineering and other help, re-integration into the international world — on condition that the Lebanese government behave in various ways inimical to Hezbollah. In fact, most Lebanese want to move in that direction, but need our help.

But our State Department, once again panicked into premature action, offered free money, while conservative critics just want to run off with their ball — when there is an important game to be played — and won.

Some people of a theological bent see the current mess as a sign of G-d's imminent apocalyptic plans for us. And they may well be right. I prefer, however, to look on the optimistic side and consider that there may just be a politically curable stupidity bacteria in the air. But it certainly seems like a pandemic.

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

Tony Blankley is editorial page editor of The Washington Times. Comment by clicking here.


© 2006, Creators Syndicate