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December 2, 2014

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 Jan 12, 2012/ 17 Teves, 5772

Defense spending is a shovel-ready investment

By Victor Davis Hanson



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | President Obama just ordered massive cutbacks in defense spending, eventually to total some $500 billion. There is plenty of fat in a Pentagon budget that grew after 9/11, but such slashing goes way too far.

Fairly or not, the cuts will only cement a now familiar stereotype of Obama's desire to retrench on the world scene. They follow symbolic apologies for purported past American sins, bowing to foreign royals, and outreach to the likes of Iran and Syria. Abroad, such perceptions can matter as much as reality, as our rivals begin hoping that Obama is as dubious about America's historically exceptional world role as are they.

In contrast, a robust military keeps the peace by deterring aggressors through the appearance of overwhelming force. We often forget that the appearance of strength in peace is almost as important as the reality of strength in war. When wars end, we scale back (think 1919 or 1946) -- only to kick ourselves once tensions arise again out of nowhere, and we must scramble to catch up and rearm for an unimagined World War II or Cold War.

America's armed forces spend about 80 percent of their budgets not on bullets and bombs but on training and compensating soldiers. Often, they do a far better job shaping the minds and character of our youth than do our colleges. Somehow the military can take an 18-year old and teach him to park a $100 million fighter across a carrier deck, but our colleges cannot ensure that his civilian counterpart will show up regularly for classes. Young men and women leave the service debt-free and with skills. Too many of our college students pile up debt and become increasingly angry that by their mid-20s they still have received neither competitive skills nor real education.

The reason why our deficit is more than $1 trillion is not just that we have multimillion-dollar jet fighters or tens of thousands of Marines. Defense outlay currently represents only about 20 percent of federal budget expenditures and is below 5 percent of our gross national product. Those percentages are roughly average costs for recent years -- despite an ongoing deployment in Afghanistan. In contrast, over the last three years we have borrowed a record near-$5 trillion for vast unfunded entitlements -- from a spiraling Social Security and Medicare to expanding the food stamp program to include one-seventh of America. Yet many Americans would probably prefer a new frigate manned by highly trained youth to discourage our enemies, rather than another Solyndra-like investment or a near-$1 trillion stimulus aimed at creating "shovel-ready" jobs.

Unfortunately, defense cuts do not occur in isolation. They feed a syndrome best typified by an insolvent and largely defenseless socialist Europe. The more that prosperous societies cut their defenses to expand social programs, the more the resulting dependency leads to even less defense and ever more benefits. Once the state promises to take care of the citizen, the citizen believes that more subsidies are still never enough. And once voters believe that defense spending is an impediment to greater entitlements, the fewer impediments they will pay for. The net result is something like the squabbling, soon-to-collapse European Union: trillions in unfunded entitlement liabilities, and unable to defend itself.

Many of the new cuts are aimed at the traditional ground forces, given that we are in a high-tech age of missiles, sophisticated drones and counterinsurgency missions. But the nature of war is neither static nor predictable. After World War II, Harry Truman wanted to do away with the Marines -- and then was glad he had not when they largely saved the reputation of the U.S. military during the unforeseen disaster in Korea in December 1950. After the Gulf War of 1990-91, we cut back on our ground forces, only to build them back up so that the Marines could deal with enemies in awful places like Anbar Province in Iraq.

The decline of civilizations of the past -- fourth-century-B.C. Athens, fifth-century-A.D. Rome, 15th-century Byzantium, or 1930s Western Europe -- was not caused by their spending too much money on defense or not spending enough on public entitlements. Rather, their expanding governments redistributed more borrowed money, while a dependent citizenry wanted even fewer soldiers to guarantee ever more handouts.

History's bleak lesson is that those societies with self-reliant citizens who protect themselves and their interests prosper; those who grow dependent cut back their defenses -- and waste away.

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.

Victor Davis Hanson, a classicist and military historian, is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and a recipient of the 2007 National Humanities Medal. Comment by clicking here.


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