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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 18, 2011 / 21 Mar-Cheshvan, 5772

Puerto Rico shows Washington the way

By Deroy Murdock




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - The gridlocked members of the congressional Supercommittee should grab President Barack Obama and decamp to a tropical island. Specifically, they should visit Puerto Rico, where a courageous leader is using free-market reforms to reinvigorate this recently moribund U.S. territory.

"We are clearly pro-growth," says Republican Governor Luis G. Fortuno. "And we do not apologize for that."

Fortuno last Tuesday hosted a delegation of conservatives who floated into San Juan aboard the Holland America Line's MS Eurodam, site of National Review magazine's latest Caribbean cruise.

Fortuno was inaugurated on January 2, 2009, just 18 days before Obama. Since then, these two officials have marched in opposite directions, with opposite results.

"We were closer to the abyss than most states," Fortuno says. "When I came into office, we were facing not just the worst recession since the '30s, but the worst budget deficit in America, proportionally. We were literally broke. We did not have enough money to meet our first payroll. We had to take out a loan to do that. At that point, my wife asked me if we could ask for a recount."

So, unlike the free-spending Obama, and George W. Bush before him, Fortuno declares: "We cut expenses."

Fortuno gave himself a 10-percent pay cut. He trimmed his agency heads' salaries by 5 percent. That bought him the credibility to chop overall spending by 20 percent. He booted some 20,000 government workers, through attrition as well as layoffs, saving $935 million. (Compare that to Bush-Obama's 11.7 percent hike in federal civilian headcount since the Great Recession began in December 2007 -- excluding temporary Census jobs.) Fortuno has shifted remaining government workers from old-fashioned, statist, defined-benefit pensions to modern, market-friendly, defined-contribution plans.

Ranked No. 51 in 2009, behind each of the United States, in terms of deficit-to-revenue, Puerto Rico now is 15th, with the $3.3 billion deficit Fortuno inherited (44 percent of revenues) now macheteed to $610 million (7.1 percent). Fortuno's reforms, including merging government agencies, led Standard and Poor's to upgrade Puerto Rico's credit rating for the first time in 28 years. S and P, of course, famously downgraded U.S. sovereign debt last August, a historical first. Meanwhile, America's national debt screamed past the $15 trillion mark on Wednesday.

Fortuno has sliced taxes. The corporate tax rate plunged last January 1 from 41 percent to 30 percent, en route to 25 percent in 2014. He cut average individual tax rates by one quarter this year and in half within six years.

"You needed to obtain an average of 28 permits and endorsements to do anything," Fortuno says, regarding regulatory relief. "You had to go to 20-plus different agencies to do that. Today, you go to one agency, and you get your permit there, or you can go to PR.gov, and get it online."

"We have created a better business climate, and it shows," Fortuno explains.

A five-year property-tax holiday and the scrapping of capital gains and death taxes have helped push existing home sales up 35 percent this year (while they fell 7.9 percent on the Mainland) and new home sales soaring 92.2 percent (as they sagged 9.9 percent up north)

CVS, Nordstrom's, Pet Smart, P.F. Chang's, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Victoria's Secret all are opening in Puerto Rico. "They're coming in brand new, for the first time, ever," Fortuno says. Honeywell and Merck are expanding manufacturing facilities. Venezuela's Banesco is the first new bank to open in Puerto Rico in 13 years.

"We are moving in the right direction," Fortuno smiles. "We are creating jobs in the private sector, not in the public sector, the way we should be. So, we can keep lowering taxes."

Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher are among Fortuno's inspirations. Volumes by and about those visionaries grace Fortuno's bookshelves. A small sign on his desk replicates one in Reagan's Oval Office. It explains Luis G. Fortuno's success, begs Washington to listen, and simply says: "It CAN be done."

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Deroy Murdock is a columnist with Scripps Howard News Service and a media fellow with the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace at Stanford University.



Previously:

11/11/11: Take heed, America: In Ohio even left-wing unionists voted to repeal ObamaCare

10/28/11: Thanks, Netanyahu, for surge of hardened terrorists

10/24/11:The Obama Spend-O-Rama

10/17/11: Cain stakes his viable claim just by showing up

10/07/11: Green jobs are national scandal

10/04/11: Obama proudly declares class war

09/23/11: Obama wrong about ‘Do-Nothing’ Congress

09/16/11: Obama needs Ryan's vision on jobs

09/09/11: Reaganomics trounces Obamanomics

09/02/11: Labor leaders to Obama: Stop killing jobs

08/26/11: Pro-market Perry vaults over Romney in GOP race

08/19/11: Some rich Americans will not rest until Washington boosts their taxes

08/12/11: Hope, change and free birth control for all

08/05/11: Debt deal does virtually nothing

07/21/11: Dems pro-choice on abortion but little else

07/15/11: Debt deception: If only Dems were honest and GOPers were courageous

07/08/11: Congress' war on light bulb blows up





© 2011, SCRIPPS HOWARD NEWS SERVICE

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