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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 December 27, 2012/ 14 Teves, 5773

2012: When dreams died

By Victor Davis Hanson



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | The year 2012 saw the triumph of cold reality over pie-in-the-sky dreams.

Barack Obama in 2008 won an election on an upbeat message of change in the hope that the first black president would mark a redemptive moment in American history. Four years later, the fantasies are gone. In continuing dismal economic times, Obama ran for re-election neither on his first-term achievements -- Obamacare, bailouts, financial stimuli and Keynesian mega-deficits -- nor on more utopian promises.

Instead, Obama's campaign systematically reduced his rival, Wall Street financier Mitt Romney, to a conniving, felonious financial pirate who did dastardly things, from letting the uninsured die to putting his pet dog Seamus in a cage on top of the family car.

Obama once had mused that he wished to be the mirror image of Ronald Reagan -- successfully coaxing America to the left as the folksy Reagan had to the right. Instead, 2012 taught us that a calculating Obama is more a canny Richard Nixon, who likewise used any means necessary to be re-elected on the premise that his rival would be even worse. But we know what eventually happened to the triumphant, pre-Watergate Nixon after November 1972; what will be the second-term wages of Obama's winning ugly?

The so-called fiscal cliff offers more examples of 2012 dreams giving way to reality. Obama will probably get his long-promised taxes on the rich. But so what? There are not enough caricatured "millionaires and billionaires" even to make a dent in his administration's fifth consecutive $1 trillion-plus deficit.

Instead, all that is left for Obama is to go over the cliff or wait for Republicans to counter-propose the necessary cuts in entitlements so that he can both reluctantly accept these budget-saving measures and demonize those who so threaten "the most vulnerable." What will stop the massive borrowing is not the myth of bipartisan cooperation, but the reality of returning high interest rates that will make the current splurging simply unsustainable.

What did we learn from the killings of Americans in Benghazi? So far, the fantasy of jailing a single Coptic filmmaker for posting an anti-Islamic video has trumped the reality of holding the administration accountable for allowing lax security and offering only feeble responses to a massacre prompted by a pre-planned, al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorist attack on a U.S. diplomatic post.

As the year ended, a deranged 20-year-old killer in Newtown, Conn., shot down 26 children and adults at the Sandy Hook Elementary School. The nation decried the killer's access to his murdered mother's semi-automatic arsenal to achieve his gruesome toll.

But banning the sale of assault weapons will probably not stop another Newtown massacre any more than an earlier ban prevented the Columbine shootings -- unless the federal government is prepared to enter American homes and confiscate millions of previously purchased semi-automatic and assault weapons. Steps toward a far more realistic solution -- jawbone Hollywood to quit romanticizing gratuitous cruelty and violence; censor sick, macabre video games; restrict some freedoms of the mentally ill; and put armed security guards into the schools -- are as much an anathema to civil libertarians as the banning of some guns is a panacea. So we pontificate while waiting for the next massacre.

In February, the European Union grandly announced a second -- and last -- 130 billion-euro bailout of Greece and an apparent solution to the southern European debt crisis. But the year ended with Greece never poorer and never more indebted. The proper solution was never band-aiding Greece with some German euros, but rather asking why under the EU system had Greece -- and other Mediterranean EU members -- been allowed to become so indebted for so long in the first place.

On June 30, supposed reformist Mohamed Morsi was sworn in as president of a new democratic Egypt amid grand talk of the Arab Spring. But in November, Morsi, as a good Islamist, hounded out of office his secular rivals in the judiciary and suspended the rule of law. And days ago, by popular vote, Morsi oversaw the implementation of the Muslim Brotherhood's version of Sharia Law as the basis of the new Egyptian constitution. Given the chaos of Libya and Syria, and the murder of Americans in Benghazi, the cruel winter of 2012 has now ended the dreamy Arab Spring of 2011.

As the year ends, there are ominous signs of impending financial implosion at home. Abroad, we see a soon-to-be nuclear Iran, an even more unhinged nuclear North Korea, a new Islamic coalition against Israel, a bleeding European Union, and a more nationalist Germany and Japan determined to achieve security apart from the old but increasingly suspect U.S. guarantees.

The year 2012 should have taught us that dreaming is no answer to reality; 2013 will determine how well we learned that lesson.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Victor Davis Hanson, a classicist and military historian, is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and a recipient of the 2007 National Humanities Medal. Comment by clicking here.


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