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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 Nov 7, 2011 / 10 Mar-Cheshvan 5772

Prerevolutionary gems in need of TLC

By Dale McFeatters




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | The right to own a house and other real estate was taken for granted for millennia, so much so that the Sumerian king Urukagina mentions it only indirectly when he codified what is believed to be the world’s first set of written laws.

With the exception of a few disastrous detours — the Soviet Union under Lenin and China under Mao come to mind — humanity has been content to live with the concept of homeownership.

One notable holdout has been Cuba. In 1959, when Fidel Castro took control of Cuba, almost all private property was expropriated or confiscated. But in a dramatic departure from communist purity, the government of Raul Castro has decreed that Cubans are now free to buy and sell property, although they are limited to one principal residence and one vacation home.

A Cuban’s purchase of a home may lead to awkward questions. As one black-market real-estate agent told The New York Times: “Nobody who has been working honestly in a job in Cuba the past 50 years could possibly afford to buy a second home.”

The money, if not accumulated quietly over the years from off-the-books jobs, will likely come from family members living abroad, especially Cuban-Americans.

In fact, the government is wrestling with the question of whether foreigners should be allowed to buy Cuban real estate. An exception may be made for foreigners who buy vacation homes near resorts, but the authorities are understandably antsy about a free market in houses.

Cuba has such a housing shortage that anyone who has clear title to a house is likely instantly wealthy, at least on paper. Cubans are already beginning to sense the downside of a real-estate bubble. Sure, they can sell the family homestead for a fistful of money, but they have to turn around and pay an inflated price for another place to live.

Since the government technically controls the houses, no one put much into them in the way of maintenance, and the Soviet-era apartment blocks, like most Soviet-era construction, are already starting to fall apart.

Homeownership will give Cubans something they haven’t had for more than 50 years — a real stake in their island, since some small piece of it will be really theirs. It should be only a matter of months before the term “fixer-upper” becomes an indispensable part of the Cuban vocabulary.

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