Home
In this issue
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 Oct. 4, 2013 / 30 Tishrei, 5774

When Conservatives Turn Radical

By Linda Chavez



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | In 2008, when Barack Obama was a very junior senator with a thin resume, conservatives were quick to point out that the would-be president was nothing more than a lowly community organizer. What conservatives didn't understand then is that those organizing skills would turn out to be all he needed — not, of course, to be an effective president for all the people, but enough to get him elected twice and to outmaneuver his opponents at every turn.

President Obama has shown little presidential leadership during his time in office. But he has shown remarkable skill at turning every policy argument into a moral crusade in which he represents good and his adversaries, evil. He's doing it now on the government-funding debacle — and conservatives in the House have fallen right into the trap.

Defunding Obamacare was never in the cards for Republicans. The law is a bad one. It will make health care more expensive for those who already have insurance without ensuring coverage of those who don't. It is likely to cost jobs and prove a drag on an already struggling economy. But it is the law of the land, and Republicans do not currently have the votes in Congress, much less an occupant in the White House, to change it.

Instead of biding their time and turning Obamacare's failures into a winning GOP issue in 2014 and beyond, however, some in the party thought they could bring the president to his knees by shutting down the government.

And how did the president respond? "This Republican shutdown did not have to happen," he said Tuesday. "But I want every American to understand why it did happen. Republicans in the House of Representatives refused to fund the government unless we defunded or dismantled the Affordable Care Act. They've shut down the government over an ideological crusade to deny affordable health insurance to millions of Americans. In other words, they demanded ransom just for doing their job."

The debate is no longer about an unwieldy, intrusive law that will harm far more people than it helps. It's now about cruel, bullying ideologues who would rather shut down the government than accept the rule of law.



The president's tactics are straight out of his intellectual mentor Saul Alinsky's rulebook. "Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it," Alinsky wrote in his "Rules for Radicals: A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals." Alinsky's goal was to provide a guide "for those who want to change the world from what it is to what they believe it should be."

Radicals — including Alinsky and a younger Obama — usually failed in accomplishing their goal because the method they used ended up alienating people. The primary method of radicals like Alinsky was direct action: throw up picket lines, stage guerilla street theater, engage in sit-downs, stop the other side from going about its business. Radicals could disrupt political conventions, close down public schools, tie up traffic and shut down assembly lines, but they lost public support in the process.

But on this fight, the GOP has handed the radical community organizer turned president a rare gift. It's now the House Republicans who are using direct action — in this case, shutting down the government — to try to accomplish their goal.

The conservatives who have pushed this tactic are playing right into the president's hands. How ironic that radical Barry Obama could end up looking like the rule-of-law guy, while conservative lawmakers assume the role of bomb throwers.

Republicans need to start thinking like conservatives again. The GOP is in danger of being undone from within. There is nothing conservative about trying to overturn a bad law by shutting down the government. Conservatives respect process. Conservatives believe that elections have consequences, and when they lose, they don't take to the barricades. They live to fight another day, and they do it by the persuasiveness of their arguments, not by direct action.

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.


JWR contributor Linda Chavez is President of the Center for Equal Opportunity. Her latest book is "Betrayal: How Union Bosses Shake Down Their Members and Corrupt American Politics". (Click HERE to purchase. Sales help fund JWR.)

Linda Chavez Archives


© 2006, Creators Syndicate

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles

Quantcast