May 24, 2013
May 22, 2013
They launched the 'Arab Spring' but now yearn for the good old days of a strongman
May 20, 2013
Richard A. Serrano: Is Meir Kahane's assassin now a changed man?
Genetic copies of living people from embryos no longer science fiction
Jewz in the Newz by Nate Bloom :
The Kosher Gourmet by Cathy Pollak:
Jews Inducted into Rock Hall of Fame; Anton Yelchin co-stars in New "Trek" film; Kutcher (but not Kunis) visits Israel; Jewish TV Star Praises Jewish Rap Star
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May 13, 2013
Rabbi Nathan Lopes Cardozo: Why the giving of the document that would permanently change the world could only be done in desolation
David G. Savage:
Church-state, literally? Supreme Court weighing public school graduation in a church
May 10, 2013
Rabbi Berel Wein: Be all that you should be
May 8, 2013
Peter Ford: Why China is welcoming both Israel's Netanyahu and Palestinians' Abbas
Obama administration quietly backs out of appeal over new contraceptive mandate
At Kerry-Putin meeting, US-Russia relations thaw --- a tad
The Kosher Gourmet by Leela Cyd Ross :
Almost too pretty to eat, this colorful salad with Sicilian inspiration will tickle the taste buds and delight your visual sensibility
May 6, 2013
May 3, 2013
Kids, kittens the Same?
With employee perks at struggling Internet pioneer Yahoo! it's hard to tell
Artificial kidney offers hope to patients tethered to a dialysis machine
April 29, 2013
Poland's new Jewish museum celebrates life, doesn't revisit Holocaust
Terrorism in America: Is US missing a chance to learn from failed plots?
Boston Bomber's 'Svengali' Revealed
Tiny satellites + cellphones = cheaper 'eyes in the sky' for NASA
April 26, 2013
Clifford D. May:
Defense in the Age of Jihadist Terrorism
Sharon Palmer, R.D.:
How to feel your best -- with plenty of energy, a healthy weight and optimal mental and physical function -- without driving yourself batty
April 24, 2013
Jewish World Review
August 19, 2011
/ 19 Menachem-Av, 5771
You come back from a visit to "good old Boston,/ The home of the bean and the cod,/ Where the Lowells talk only to Cabots,/ And the Cabots talk only to G0d," only to walk into the Devil's own furnace. For you emerge out of Little Rock's airport into an all-time, 114-degree high for the city. It's like having a blanket thrown over you, and it's not even a wet one.
It's good to be home, just to know where things are once again. It's also a comfort to have a standard of comparison. And realize that Little Rock's crazy drivers are a model of sanity compared to those in Boston, the wildest this side of Italy's winding roads.
But this summer's string of torrid days have taken their toll on this old boy. I now love to see that evenin' sun go down, to give an old blues lyric a slight twist. Back at the office, even with cool air pouring out of the nearest vent like a restorative, that blank computer screen stares out at me like a cobra, asking: What are you going to do for your next column?
Forget going into the details of the economic mess. Everybody's patience has been exhausted by the never-ending debate and blame-shifting in Washington over the federal debt. Happily, it's too darned hot to panic.
But my basic problem remained: What the heck was I going to do for a column? It was too hot even to pontificate. It would probably have been a great favor to readers to leave this space blank, white as cooling snow. Or maybe with just a small notice in agate in the middle of all that restful vacancy: Compliments of a Friend.
But it is in the nature of columnists never to seize a good opportunity to shut up. That's how we stay in trouble, our natural habitat.
What was needed, it dawned on me, was a guest column. Or at least a kernel of wisdom I could borrow and pass on as my own. And if you're going to steal, why not steal from the best? Which is why the thrust of today's piece isn't my work but that of someone who knew what he was talking about: Edmund Burke.
You couldn't crib from anyone better. Burke combined the economic philosophy of Adam Smith with the statesmanship of the Founding Fathers. Which is why his was one of the few voices in England to defend the American Revolution and then oppose the French one from the earliest days of each. He could foresee their fruits, and by their fruits he knew them.
These days, those of us dismayed by the economic news can turn for comfort and light to Edmund Burke's words at another time of conflicting counsel and general uncertainty -- 1790. That's the year his still relevant "Reflections on the Revolution in France" appeared. It took him only a brief aside on the nature of public finance to diagnose today's fiscal troubles and prescribe the remedy.
Burke well understood the necessity of "a just revenue" for government, for from it derives "magnanimity, and liberality, and beneficence and fortitude ... and the tutelary protection of all good arts."
But wise management also demanded "continence, and self-denial, and labor, and frugality, and whatever else there is in which the mind shews itself above the appetite...."
There can be little doubt that now is a time for some overdue self-restraint. To quote Burke's conclusion:
"The objects of a financier are, then, to secure an ample revenue, to impose it with judgment and equality, to employ it economically, and when necessity obliges him to make use of credit, to secure its foundations in that instance, and for ever, by the clearness and candor of his proceedings, the exactness of his calculations, and the solidity of his funds."
For a more concise, American version of the same counsel, see Washington's Farewell Address, in which he advised future generations to "cherish public credit." And added: "One method of preserving it is to use it as sparingly as possible" and avoid "the accumulation of debt."
Here endeth the lesson. Finding wise counsel is easy enough. The challenge is having the wisdom and strength to follow it.
Paul Greenberg Archives
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