In this issue
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 26, 2005 / 21 Av, 5765

The Politics of Coffee

By Tom Purcell

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It's impossible to get away from politics these days, even while sipping your morning brew.

According to a recent Zogby poll, the coffee you drink likely reflects where you sit within America's political and cultural divide. It's what the Zogby folks call "The Starbucks Divide."

As it goes, the folks who drink Starbucks' coffee differ mightily from those who drink Dunkin Donuts'. Starbucks' drinkers are primarily under 50. Liberals and progressives — shocking I know — are twice as likely to drink Starbucks.

The divide breaks down along gender lines, too. While men prefer Dunkin' Donuts over Starbucks (36% to 28%), women prefer Starbucks by a much wider margin (40% to 24%).

"Men," for purposes of this poll, refers to fellows who still know how to change the sparkplug in their lawnmowers and would sooner be chained to the soap aisle in Bed, Bath and Beyond than be forced to utter bastardized Starbucks Latin when ordering a lousy cup of coffee.

The Starbucks Divide reflects other interesting fault lines. Folks in larger cities overwhelmingly prefer Starbucks whereas folks living in rural areas prefer Dunkin Donuts. In other words, Starbucks' drinkers went for Kerry whereas the Dunkin' Donuts' crowd leaned for Bush.

Since I spent the past week sitting in a Starbucks in Fairfax, VA — I don't like the company, but need a place to access wireless when on the road — I decided to bounce my own observations against the findings of the Zogby poll.

There is something decidedly different about a Starbucks customer. While folks of every stripe do pass through Starbucks' doors, the attributes of the typical customer is telling.

Frequently a woman — or if a man, he is one who gets his hair primped — she moves with a shiftiness and uneasiness common to addicts of every kind. Make no mistake, caffeine IS a drug and it IS addictive, and Starbucks products are loaded with it.

According to the anti-everything Center for Science in the Public Interest, a large Starbucks coffee — I'll eat my head before I utter the word "venti" — has 550 milligrams of caffeine, the equivalent of 12 cans of Coke.

And when a Starbucks junky orders up her caffeine fix, she doesn't do it as regular people have always done in cafes and diners across America ("I'll have a cup of coffee, Delores, and give me a donut") but with a description that is more complicated than a Kerry statement.

"I'll have a venti mocha frappuccino with a double shot of espresso, extra cream (they spell it "crème", the twits) and a touch of cinnamon."

The tone in which typical Starbucks customers place their orders is eerily familiar. I heard it spill out of Michael Moore during the presidential campaign. You can hear it in the badgering shouts of protesters who daily agitate recovering soldiers at the Walter Reed Medical Center.

It's the "I'm smarter than you are so shut up" tone that fills the coffers at moveon.org and is the basis for Al Franken's inanity. It's a shame, too, because Franken used to be funny, but that was before, probably, a heavy dose of Starbucks caffeine caused him to get lost in the narrowness of his own ideas.

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There should be no shock here that liberals chug Starbucks while conservatives sip Dunkin Donuts. Starbucks hails from Seattle, Washington, the land of the disaffected hippie — some of those hippies went on to become technology millionaires, and their money now funds a variety of left-leaning advocacy groups.

To be sure, Starbucks has long contributed to numerous liberal causes — Planned Parenthood, gay rights, etc, etc. — but has never dropped one cent, to my knowledge, to support any program or cause that could be considered "conservative."

Even the quotes on Starbucks' paper cups, part of the company's "The Way I See It" campaign, are decidedly left-leaning. Of all the actors, athletes and performers quoted, only one, Jonah Goldberg, has been a conservative.

In any event, the Zogby folks are on to something. Their Starbucks Divide articulates something I had a sense of but was unable to put my finger on, and that is this:

You can't avoid politics anywhere these days, even while sipping your morning brew.

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© 2005, Tom Purcell