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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 28, 2011 / 2 Kislev, 5772

Bailing Out The Titanic With A Thimble

By Mark Steyn



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | I see Andrea True died earlier this month. The late disco diva enjoyed a brief moment of global celebrity in 1976 with her ubiquitous glitterball favorite:

"More More More
How do you like it?
How do you like it?
More More More
How do you like it?
How do you like it?"

In honor of Andrea's passing, I have asked my congressman to propose the adoption of this song as the U.S. national anthem. True, Miss True wrote the number as an autobiographical reflection on her days as a porn movie actress but, consciously or not, it accurately distills the essence of American governmental philosophy in the early 21st century: Excess even unto oblivion.

When it comes to spending and the size of government, only the Democrats are officially panting orgasmically, "More More More, How do you like it?" while the Republicans are formally committed to "Less less less." This makes for many dramatic showdowns on the evening news.

In the summer, it was the "looming" "deadline" to raise the debt ceiling. In the fall, it was the "looming" "deadline" for the alleged supercommittee to agree $1.2 trillion of cuts. The supercommittee was set up as a last-minute deal for raising the debt ceiling.

Now that the supercommittee's flopped out, "automatic" mandatory cuts to defense and discretionary spending are supposed to kick in — by 2013. But no doubt as that looming deadline looms the can of worms will be effortlessly kicked down the room another looming deadline or two.

In return for agreeing to raise the debt ceiling (and, by the way, that's the wrong way of looking at it: more accurately, we're lowering the debt abyss), John Boehner bragged that he'd got a deal for "a real, enforceable cut" of supposedly $7 billion from fiscal year 2012. After running the numbers themselves, the Congressional Budget Office said it only cut $1 billion from fiscal 2012.

Which of these numbers is accurate? The correct answer is: Who cares?

The government of the United States currently spends $188 million it doesn't have every hour of every day. So, if it's $1 billion in "real, enforceable cuts," in the time it takes to roast a 20-pound stuffed turkey for your Thanksgiving dinner, the government's already borrowed back all those painstakingly negotiated savings. If it's $7 billion in "real, enforceable cuts," in the time it takes you to defrost the bird, the cuts have all been borrowed back.


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Bonus question: How "real" and "enforceable" are all those real, enforceable cuts? By the time the relevant bill passed the Senate earlier this month, the 2012 austerity budget with its brutal, savage cuts to government services actually increased spending by $10 billion. More more more, how do you like it?

But don't worry. Aside from spending the summer negotiating a deal that increases runaway federal spending, those stingy, cheeseparing Republicans also forced the Democrats to agree to create that big ol' supercommittee that would save $1.2 trillion. Over the course of 10 years.

Anywhere else on the planet that would be a significant chunk of change. But the U.S. government is planning to spend $44 trillion in the next decade. So $1.2 trillion is about 2.7%. Any businessman could cut 2.7% from his budget in his sleep. But not congressional supercommittees of supermen with superpowers thrashing it out across the table for three months. So there will be no 2.7% cut.

That means the "sequestration" from defense and discretionary spending will now be enforced, starting in 2013. That would be so brutal and slashing that by 2021 it would reduce U.S. public debt by $153 billion! Which sounds kinda big if you say it in a Dr. Evil voice and give a menacing mwa-ha-ha laugh, but in fact boils down to about what we borrow currently every month.

But don't worry. Slashing a month's worth of spending over a decade is way too extreme. So that's not going to happen, either. Instead, CNN and "Meet The Press" will just interview big shot senators and congressmen about it day in, day out, and then normal service will resume: More more more, how do you like it?

In the course of a typical day I usually receive at least a couple of emails from readers lamenting that America is now the Titanic. This is grossly unfair to the Titanic, a state-of-the-art ship whose problem was that it only had lifeboat space for about half its passengers.

By contrast, the SS Spendaholic is a rusting hulk encrusted with barnacles, there are no lifeboats, and the ship's officers are locked in a debate about whether to use a thimble or an eggcup.

A second downgrade is now inevitable. Aw, so what? We had the first back in the summer, and the ceiling didn't fall in, did it? And everyone knows those ratings agencies are a racket, right? And say what you like about our rotten finances, but Greece's are worse. And Italy's. And, er, Zimbabwe's. Probably.

The advantage the United States enjoys is that, unlike Greece, it can print the currency in which its debt is denominated. But, even so, it still needs someone to buy it. The failure of Germany's bond auction on Wednesday suggests that the world is running out of buyers for western sovereign debt at historically low interest rates.

And, were interest rates to return to their 1990-2010 average (5.7%), debt service alone would consume about 40% of federal revenues by mid-decade. That's not paying down the debt, but just staying current on the interest payments.

And yet, when it comes to spending and stimulus and entitlements and agencies and regulations and bureaucrats, "more more more/how do you like it?" remains the way to bet. Will a Republican president make a difference to this grim trajectory? I would doubt it. Unless the public conversation shifts significantly, neither President Romney nor President Insert-Name-Of-This-Week's-UnRomney-Here will have a mandate for the measures necessary to save the republic.

As for Andrea True, back in 1976 she made a commercial in Jamaica. To protest the then-prime minister's flirtation with Castro, Uncle Sam had imposed economic sanctions against Her Majesty's Government in Kingston. Miss True was unable to bring her earnings home.

So, for want of anything better to do with them, she went into a Jamaican recording studio and made a demo of a song: "More More More." Sure, 35 years later Fidel's still around, but at least the world got a disco hit out of it, which is more than you can say for the Iranian sanctions.

We're approaching a state in which the government spends $4 trillion but only raises $2 trillion. Which is an existential threat to the nation, but at least has the advantage of being one whose arithmetic is simple enough even for politicians: Try to imagine every aspect of government having to make do with half of what it currently has.

That's the scale of reform necessary to save America from a future as a bankrupt, violent, Third World ruin. More more more, how do you like it? More poverty, more crime, more corruption, more decay: how do you like that?

Flirting with Castroite policies? Maybe Washington could impose economic sanctions against itself.


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In his giant New York Times bestseller, America Alone: The End of the World as We Know It, Mark Steyn predicted collapse for the rest of the Western World. Now, he adds, America has caught up with Europe on the great rush to self-destruction.

It's not just our looming financial collapse; it's not just a culture that seems on a fast track to perdition, full of hapless, indulgent, childish people who think government has the answer for every problem; it's not just America's potential eclipse as a world power because of the drunken sailor policymaking in Washington—no, it's all this and more that spells one word for America: Armageddon.

What will a world without American leadership look like? It won't be pretty—not for you and not for your children. America's decline won't be gradual, like an aging Europe sipping espresso at a café until extinction (and the odd Greek or Islamist riot). No, America's decline will be a wrenching affair marked by violence and possibly secession.

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