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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 10, 2013/ 30 Nissan, 5773

Not a 'quota woman'

By Clarence Page

Clarence Page


JewishWorldReview.com | Margaret Thatcher never cared much for feminists and other progressive equal-rights movements. Yet she deserves to be honored by those of us who do, whether we like the result of her politics or not.

Thatcher, who died Monday at age 87 after a stroke, was irritated ironically by her most memorable achievement, that she was her country's first and, so far, only woman to be elected Prime Minister.

That's no small achievement. Yet she bristled at any suggestion that she had gotten to where she was by any means other than her own merit.

"I would hate a person to ask me a question, Are you a quota woman or are you a merit woman?" she said in a 1993 interview on NPR's "Talk of the Nation," three years after she left office. "Well, I would like (the assessment of) whatever I did to be that I got there because I was the right person for the job. It didn't matter as a man or a woman. I had the right qualities for the job, the right beliefs, the right principles. I wasn't a quota."

Such is the burden of being a "first" or "only." Thatcher had at least two glass ceilings to break. One was discrimination against her for being a woman. The other was the presumption that she had received special breaks because she was a woman. British politicians were becoming sensitive in these post-1960s times, after all, to the need to have at least one woman at the table.

She competed in a man's world, determined to beat other men at their own game, her biographers say, and didn't want any favors to her as a woman.

It is fair to say, looking at her biography, that her breaking of glass ceilings came most of all from an inner courage, conviction, resourcefulness and determination that ultimately was inseparable from the rest of her formidable personality.

After all, this shopkeeper's daughter from eastern England graduated with a chemistry degree from Oxford University and later became a barrister at time when neither profession welcomed women.

If anything, she had her own Thatcherite form of feminism, speaking of women not as victims but for their strengths. "If you want something said, ask a man," she said in a 1965 speech to a national women's group. "If you want something done, ask a woman."

And she had few illusions about the thickness of glass ceilings, saying in the early 1970s that she did not expect to live long enough to see a female prime minister. Instead, she eventually exceeded her own expectations.

Even Harriet Harman, the opposition Labor Party's most senior female member of Parliament, tweeted her condolences with: "First woman PM, a towering figure in British politics."

Yet Thatcher also was a very polarizing figure. Unlike her good friend President Ronald Reagan, whose folksy Irish storyteller's wit often smoothed ruffled feathers, Thatcher's stiff-upper-lip call for tough measures left many feathers quite ruffled.

Yet tough measures were needed. Britain in the late 1970s, where I briefly worked as a reporter, was flat on its back politically, economically and spiritually with postwar, postindustrial decline. Thatcher pushed tax cuts, privatization, union busting and tight-spending policies that brought relief to many but increased suffering to others.

"If you just set out to be liked," she said in a 1989 speech, "you would be prepared to compromise on anything at any time and you would achieve nothing."

A year later, however, her principled inflexibility led to her party removing her from power. It also paved the way to a new center-left "third way" politics that helped bring Tony Blair to power in England -- and Bill Clinton-style Democrats in the U.S.

It is hard to know how much of Margaret Thatcher's public toughness grew out of a need to overcome sexist stereotypes about women as leaders. But there's no question she helped provide a model of leadership that crosses party and gender lines. In her fall from power, she also showed the hazards of refusing to compromise amid changing times.

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