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 14, 2007 / 30 Menachem-Av, 5767

The Mike Gerson I know

By Cal Thomas

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Former White House speechwriter Michael Gerson has been accused of self-aggrandizement and taking credit for speeches he did not fully write, stealing the lines of others and making them his own. The accusations come from his former speechwriting colleague, Matthew Scully, in the September issue of the Atlantic magazine.

I have known Mike Gerson for 20 years and have never seen him display symptoms of the twin viruses of arrogance and pride that often infect people who work in politics, government and the media in Washington.

Once, at our home for dinner, Mike was asked by a person not as familiar with the profiles of the well placed and powerful what he did for a living. "I work at the White House," he said quietly. There is a way to say this, hoping the questioner will ask for more details so that the person being asked can appear self-effacing, even while he revels in the prestige of the job. That was not the case with Mike. As the questioner probed for more information, which Mike was reluctant to offer, I jumped in and said, "He's the president's chief speechwriter." Mike appeared to blush. He preferred to talk about the president, not himself.


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When he worked for then-Senator Dan Coats, Indiana Republican, he occasionally helped me with research for speeches and wrote some. He declined payment and recognition for them, but after leaving Coats' office, I insisted on paying him and I recommended him to others. Though he is married and the father of two, to this day I cannot get him to call me by my first name. These are not attributes of a man full of himself whose chief aim is self-promotion.

On my first visit to his White House office, I expected to see pictures of him with President Bush, testifying to his access and status. There were none. Instead, he had a cluttered desk in an ordinary-looking office with bare walls. I heard he later got an "upgrade" and maybe there were pictures in that office, but Mike never seemed to me to be the puffed-up type.

He quietly campaigned for programs to fight AIDS and poverty, issues not often associated with a Republican administration and unlikely to gain many votes for a party that focuses mostly on abortion, opposition to same-sex marriage and tax cuts. He frequently traveled to Africa to see firsthand the effects of government programs on victims of AIDS and reported his findings without fanfare to the president.

All presidential speeches are collaborative efforts. No one person can meet the needs of a president, who must often speak several times a day to different audiences. Most major speeches, such as the State of the Union Address and those about policy initiatives and decisions, must travel through the cabinet agencies as well as numerous advisers. In Gerson's case, the issue isn't whether the president's speeches were fashioned by a team, but whether Gerson took the work of others, made them his own and took the credit to boost his profile. He has sufficient knowledge and talent not to plagiarize others.

I have had people plagiarize my work. Rather than saying nothing, or waiting to write an article like Matthew Scully, I immediately contacted the individuals and demanded that they publicly repent. Gerson tells me that Scully never spoke to him about any of the things he writes in the Atlantic article.

The man Scully has profiled is not the Mike Gerson I know. Over two decades, one would expect to see signs of an overactive ego and the sin of pride if they exist. I never did. At the 2000 Republican Convention in Philadelphia, I saw Mike at a reception sponsored by National Review. Knowing he had written Gov. George W. Bush's acceptance speech, I asked him if he would be in the hall for its delivery. He said he would not, preferring to walk alone outside. He might have embraced the glory. Instead, he deflected it to the nominee.

That was one of many examples I have witnessed of his humility and character. I don't know what motivated Scully to write what he did. It can only help him among the Bush-haters. It can't hurt Mike Gerson, who is a man of integrity and one whose faith, intellectual curiosity and example I admire.

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

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