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 March 22, 2007 / 3 Nissan 5767

GOP “family values”

By Jeff Jacoby

Jeff Jacoby
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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | The radio talk show had turned to the presidential possibilities of former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. On the line was a woman who described herself as a religious conservative and a Republican. "I could never vote for Gingrich," she was saying. "If he couldn't uphold his marital vows, how can we trust him to uphold his oath of office?"

Brace yourself: You may be hearing that kind of thing a lot in the months ahead.

Fifteen years ago it was a Democrat, Governor Bill Clinton, whose marital shortcomings faced scrutiny on the presidential campaign trail. Six years later, then-President Clinton was impeached by House Republicans for lying under oath about what he eventually admitted was his "inappropriate" relationship with a White House intern.

Another presidential race is underway, and again marital misbehavior is drawing attention. This time it is Republicans whose family values are in question. Of leading GOP contenders — Gingrich, Rudy Giuliani, former New York mayor; Senator John McCain, and Mitt Romney, former governor — only Romney is married to his first wife. McCain is on his second marriage; Gingrich and Giuliani, their third. Each had an affair with the woman now his wife while married to another.

McCain's first marriage ended more than 25 years ago, but Giuliani's and Gingrich's family complications continue to make news. Last month, Giuliani and wife number three posed for a newspaper photo while exchanging an intimate kiss. Not long thereafter Giuliani's son Andrew announced that he would not take part in his father's campaign, making it clear that the family remains riven by the former mayor's bitter and very public dumping of wife number two — Andrew's mother, Donna Hanover.

Earlier this month, Gingrich went on the air with James Dobson, a Christian conservative, and confessed he had cheated on his former wife. Asked "if the rumors were true" that he was involved in an adulterous relationship even as the Clinton impeachment was underway, Gingrich replied: "Well, the fact is that the honest answer is yes." Dobson pressed on , asking whether Gingrich was repentant. "Absolutely," Gingrich replied. "I have turned to God and have gotten on my knees and prayed . . . and sought G-d's forgiveness."

Just how much of this do Americans want? Are a candidate's marriages, divorces, or extramarital affairs relevant to his fitness for political office? Confession may be good for the soul, but is it good for presidential politics?

Of course, voters are free to measure politicians by any yardstick they choose. But when the conversation turns to sexual misbehavior, a few principles are worth keeping in mind.

First, marital fidelity has nothing to do with political leadership. Convenient as it would be if adulterous behavior were a reliable indicator of presidential unsuitability, history doesn't bear that out. Franklin Roosevelt had mistresses and John F. Kennedy was a philanderer, but both made better political leaders than such faithful husbands as Jimmy Carter or Richard Nixon. Examples abound of illustrious public leaders who were grievous private sinners. The untidy fact is, a man who would be scandalous as a pastor may prove an exemplary president.

Second, public behavior counts for more than private behavior. Voters should give greater weight to what a politician says and does in public than to his private words and deeds. What matters most is whether he upholds appropriate values — not whether he falls short of those values in private. Civilized society does not require human perfection and consistency. It does require that imperfect human beings, whatever their private failings, affirm the distinction between right and wrong, and maintain a social architecture of shared moral standards.

A man who publicly castigates an adulterous president while secretly carrying on an affair of his own — as Gingrich did in 1998 — may be a hypocrite, but he has not undermined the public code that condemns adultery and celebrates marital faithfulness. By contrast, a man who flaunts his infidelity and goes out of his way to publicly humiliate his wife — as Giuliani did in 2000 — has behaved far more destructively. He has not just violated society's moral guidelines: He has subverted them.

There are saints and sinners in every political camp, and no party has a monopoly on "family values." When the spotlight was on Clinton's indiscretions, that was something too many Republicans tended to forget.

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.

Jeff Jacoby is a Boston Globe columnist. Comment by clicking here.

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