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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 April 24, 2012/ 2 Iyar, 5772

Why do you have to sell your privacy to win?

By John Kass

John Kass


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | When you heard about that southern Illinois couple winning a $218 million lottery prize — and keeping it a secret for weeks — did you think about what you would have done?

Would you have tried to keep it a secret?

I thought, yes, sure, Betty and I wouldn't tell a soul, not if I wanted to keep writing the column and keep our lives just about the same. With that cash, we wouldn't have to worry about bills or retirement or sending our boys off to college, but we'd have to worry about our lives changing forever.

Perhaps you would have hoped to keep it a secret too, and perhaps it doesn't matter when you win such a sum.

But Americans have a right to privacy. We expect that unless we commit a crime or file a lawsuit or run for office or seek the spotlight, we should be able to live our lives away from prying eyes.

And it is sad that Merle and Patricia Butler, of tiny Red Bud in southern Illinois, have lost that right. They had it taken away from them.

They kept things secret for weeks. They won that $218 million, their share of the big Mega Millions jackpot. But to claim their share, they had to go public. At least that's what the stories said, that Illinois requires lottery winners to go public to claim the prize.

Now it turns out that the stories about Illinois lottery winners having to go public aren't entirely true, and I'll explain more about that later.

"We really enjoyed living here," Merle Butler was quoted as saying, perhaps inadvertently using the past tense. "We don't plan on living anywhere else."

But the Red Bud they lived in a few weeks ago isn't the Red Bud of today. Because today there's a couple living there who won more than $200 million in the lottery, and everybody knows and nobody will forget.

Before the announcement, they had told five people, and the five kept the secret and didn't leak it, and that astounds me. The silence is testament to the character of the Butlers and their friends. The friends promised silence. They kept their mouths shut. They honored their commitment and their friendship and their word of honor.

It seems to me that such people are the kind who most value the right to privacy. And though I'm a journalist, a First Amendment absolutist, I feel it's a shame that they had to give up their privacy to get the prize.

Michael Jones, superintendent of the Illinois state lottery, said it's a long-standing policy. The lottery wants the identities of winners to be public, in part to assure the people who play the games that there is indeed a winner and that the outcome was not rigged.

"Presenting to the public that there was a winner, that's an important principle," he told us Thursday.

My belief is that most of us know that Illinois is the most politically crooked state in the U.S., or at least one of the top three. And without public disclosure, folks might think the lottery winners were somebody's somebody, making a score.

But, Jones said, there are exceptions to the rule about going public, at the superintendent's discretion.

There was that woman who won a large prize but had an order of protection placed against an ex-boyfriend. She was allowed to maintain her privacy, a spokesman for the lottery said.

And that middle-age couple with two teenagers who kept their $30 million prize a secret, even from the kids, and were able to set up a limited liability corporation to shield their identities. That was front-page news last November.

Jones mentioned a truly bizarre case of lotto privacy in the early 1980s. Six or seven finalists were drawn to have a chance at a million-dollar prize based on a horse race. Each finalist was assigned a horse at random to pick the winner.

The winner was announced, but when the prize was to be presented, the husband and wife had vanished. It turned out they were in the federal witness protection program, according to Jones.

"That's the classic case of someone who probably should have remained anonymous," Jones said.

In recent days, Jones has been considering allowing prize winners to keep their anonymity but allowing anyone to challenge it before an administrative law judge. He cautioned that this is only a rough idea at this point.

My belief is that Merle and Patricia Butler could have filed a lawsuit challenging their loss of privacy, but they didn't, and now it's too late.

So we called Steven Danish, a psychologist and professor at Virginia Commonwealth University who has worked with lottery winners on handling the pressure as their lives change. He said Thursday that the loss of privacy is profound and often ignored in the rush to trumpet the winners getting all that cash.

"What happens when he walks down the street or she goes to the grocery store?" asked Danish. "You think people aren't going to say something to them? 'You're still driving that car? You still have that house?' It gives people the right to say whatever they damn please. And ask for anything they please.

"I think it's going to be hard to live in a small town," he said. "You lose your privacy.

"Not sort of, you do. It's gone."

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.

John Kass is a columnist for the Chicago Tribune. Comments by clicking here.



Previously:



10/13/11: Stupid things men say to pregnant women
09/26/11: Desk zero: ‘Contagion’ lurks just outside office bathroom
09/08/11: Light up your lottery tickets, pass the Hopium
08/31/11: It was only a paper moon , but a legendary hoax
05/27/11: For 2012, it's Obama vs. the smoothies
05/05/11: Is it time to de-friend Pakistan?
04/12/11: China stretches the bounds of decency with cow-human-breast milk
03/23/11: No you're not in control; get over it
02/28/11: Chicago wanted a strongman, and it got one
01/26/11: Oh, c'mon, c'mon, Rahm-bo a victim? That's a stretch
12/13/10: WikiLeaks and Assange pretend there are no consequences
12/09/10: Trendy toys don't stand up to playthings of yore
10/11/10: Obama and his pals need some scarce Hopium for the next election
09/14/10: Obama gets a little bossy with tacit endorsement of Emanuel
08/18/10: Dead Meat walking, but heat to be applied again
07/28/10: No verdict, but Blagojevich trial still has its winners, losers
07/26/10: Obama's fall guy in Shirley Sherrod case is Vilsack the Pooh
07/21/10: Loathing of Steinbrenner softens after his death
07/19/10: Summertime, and the race cards are easy
06/28/10: Does Congress have the guts to fix what court gutted? Honestly, no
12/17/09: Belt-tightening presidential aspirant leaves room for Spam
09/27/09: ACORN can teach the GOP a thing or 2
09/03/09: Blago as author gets it wrong yet again 06/22/09: Obama's latest political play should shock no one
06/17/09: Presidential satire takes Hopium break
06/11/09: E-Verify works, so, of course, let's not use it
06/09/09: First Lady Macbeth's the man, so in your face, Eminem
06/02/09: Judge Sotomayor would think me most unwise
05/12/09: Parents, enjoy this time, in all its creepiness
03/18/09: Stem cell policy shift brings a sinking feeling
03/09/09: Name That Blago Book contest names its winner
03/05/09: Contest: Name Blagojevich's book
02/16/09: Dems undercut aid for U.S. workers
01/20/09: Let the carving begin on Tombstone's tomb
01/12/09: Obama serves Reid taste of Chicago Way
01/02/09: Jesters don't pick up the race card in a nationally televised news conference and slam it into the face of every Dem in the Senate, a palm heel strike to the tip of the nose, leaving all of them watery-eyed, their lips stinging
12/24/08: Governor waxes poetic, but Combine rolls on
12/23/08: Got corruption? Get Jesse Junior G-Man
12/18/08: Will ‘feditis’ spread to Obama and Daley?
12/15/08: Man behind curtain is wizard of Rod, Rahm

© 2011, Chicago Tribune. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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