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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 August 3, 2011 / 3 Menachem-Av, 5771

Obama Is Out of Options

By Jonah Goldberg




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | After Pearl Harbor, President Franklin D. Roosevelt's presidency changed. As he put it in 1943, "Dr. New Deal" had to be replaced by "Dr. Win the War." It was a colossal policy switch, but it wasn't an extreme makeover politically. He was still the same FDR, and the public understood the need for change.

And it saved his presidency. As President Obama's former economic advisor, Larry Summers, said recently, "Never forget ... that if Hitler had not come along, Franklin Roosevelt would have left office in 1941 with an unemployment rate in excess of 15 percent and an economic recovery strategy that had basically failed."

Many economic historians, such as Robert Higgs, disagree with Summers on the substantive point about World War II being good for the economy. But Summers was absolutely right politically about the New Deal and about the fact that the war saved FDR's bacon.

President Obama desperately needs to make a similar change but, thank goodness, providence isn't offering any Pearl Harbors these days.

It's very hard to make a new first impression, particularly for presidents seeking another term. Of course, if things are going well, you don't need to reinvent yourself. Dwight Eisenhower stayed the same reassuring duffer-in-chief throughout the relatively tranquil 1950s.

In 1972, Richard Nixon rode a (seemingly) good economy and foreign policy success to a landslide reelection victory -- 60 percent of the popular vote. Ronald Reagan stayed Reagan in 1984 amid a surging economy.

George W. Bush made a switch, from Mr. Compassionate Conservative to President Dead-or-Alive. But, like FDR with Pearl Harbor, his political task was the result of an unprovoked attack and the war(s) that followed.

A major strain of conventional wisdom in Washington these days is that Obama can win re-election by "tacking to the center." Bill Clinton, who famously "triangulated" his way into a second term, is the model. Theoretically, Obama can do the same thing by leveraging a "centrist" debt-limit deal against his base, winning back the independents and moderates who delivered his decisive victory in 2008.

The problem, as many have pointed out, is that Obama can't borrow the Clinton or Reagan playbooks because the economy is just too rotten. A rising economic tide gives presidents room to reinvent themselves. By the spring of 1995, the U.S. economy was averaging 200,000 new jobs per month.

But the bad economy isn't the only hurdle. Clinton's race to the center was a return to form. He beat George H.W. Bush by running as a centrist Southern Democrat who supported the death penalty, wanted to "end welfare as we know it" and was eager to zing his own base if it would earn him a second look from Reagan Democrats and others disillusioned with the party of McGovern, Mondale and Dukakis. His was a restoration, not a transformation.

I'm writing this before the final votes on the debt-limit deal, and I have no desire to tempt fate. But it seems that no matter how Obama gets out of this, he's left in a double bind. He desperately needs to make a new first impression because he cannot successfully run on a terrible economy, an unpopular health-care plan and a very confusing foreign policy at a time when most Americans are burned out on foreign policy.

But absent external events he cannot plan on, there's no way to credibly reinvent himself or even reintroduce himself as the guy who ran in 2008.

He can't revive his claim to be a post-partisan bridge-builder, can he? His first two years were as partisan as any we've seen in a generation. He certainly can't run on "Yes We Can!" optimism, particularly not after he's shown his willingness to force a "sugar-coated Satan sandwich," in the words of Congressional Black Caucus Chairman Emanuel Cleaver, down the throats of his base. He cannot run as a gung-ho fiscal hawk, not when he contributed so much to the deficit. And he will never outbid the GOP nominee on shrinking government. If he tries, his base stays home.

Barring some tragic event outside his control, it's very hard to see what the man can do. He's got no place he can go, but he can't stay where he is.

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