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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

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 28, 2012/ 11 Elul, 5772

This Convention Matters

By Mona Charen




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | We've all heard the objection that political conventions have become empty kabuki theater. The high drama of multiple ballots is dead and gone. Uncertainty about the outcome is no more. "Today," laments political guru Mike Murphy, "delegates are bound through the application of TV ad ratings points, not machine deals. They sit in the convention hall like the background actors in a TV show, milling about to the director's orders, wearing costumes and denied a single line. It seems a shabby ending to a great tradition. It's time for a mercy killing."

Mike Murphy is an astute observer of all things political, but I think he's wrong about this. Sure, conventions have lost their drama (though, even in the old days, very few actually featured any suspense about the eventual nominee). And yes, like so much else in American life, they have become shows. But at least they are shows about public policy and about democracy — each party getting an extended opportunity to make its best case. Political conventions are one of the only shows Americans watch collectively that are about important matters, like the direction of the country rather than about Snooki or "Monday Night Football." (Not that there's anything wrong with football...)

The Republican convention is particularly important this year, because if the polls are to be trusted (an open question), the voters are quite dissatisfied with the leadership of Barack Obama yet unconvinced that Romney is an acceptable alternative.

As Jack Kemp was fond of saying, people want to know that you care before they care what you know. Voters are uncertain about Romney because they don't yet perceive him to care about their problems. Funny how that can happen when your opponent spends hundreds of millions of dollars presenting you as a villain — a corporate raider, felon, tax cheat and murderer.

But there's another reason as well. Romney himself — unlike the sort of candidates we've seen in the past several cycles, particularly Bill Clinton and Barack Obama — has a kind of old-fashioned reticence. He doesn't have a story about paternal abandonment as Obama (quite the opposite) or posthumous birth as Clinton. He comes from the kind of loving and supportive family that he now heads with Ann Romney. But even if he did have a hard luck story, one senses that he wouldn't be comfortable retailing it. Yes, he can tout his accomplishments as a businessman or governor or savior of the Olympics, but he cannot tell stories about his personal kindness and decency — about how often he has dropped everything to help others.

There is no shortage of such accounts — and the convention is the place (the only place) where they can be told to a large audience. Romney surrogates can highlight the striking number of instances of kindness and generosity in Romney's life. The Daily offered these examples:

"One cold December day in the early 1980s, Mitt Romney loaded up his Gran Torino with firewood and brought it to the home of a single mother whose heat had been shut off just days before Christmas.

Years after a business partner died unexpectedly, Romney helped the man's surviving daughter go to medical school with loans for tuition — loans he forgave when she graduated.

And in 1997, when a fellow church member's teenage son fell seriously ill, Romney sprinted to the hospital in the dead of night, where he kept vigil with his terrified parents.

Stories like these — tales of long hours spent with grieving families, financial assistance to those in need and timely help given to strangers whether asked for or not — abound in the adult life of the Republican presidential candidate."

As a skeptical Andy Ferguson wrote in The Weekly Standard, his coolness toward the candidate evaporated after reading "The Real Romney" by two Boston Globe reporters. "My slowly softening opinion," Ferguson wrote, "went instantly to goo when 'The Real Romney' unfolded an account of his endless kindnesses — unbidden, unsung, and utterly gratuitous."

A campaign is more than a personality contest of course. Romney's acceptance speech will be an important moment to present a roadmap for the nation's recovery. But that much could also be done through advertising and in the debates. The introduction of Romney the man, on the other hand — lifting the curtain on the truth about his character and virtues — can only be done by others and thus, requires the backdrop of the convention — silly hats, programmed applause, staged tableaux and all.

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