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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 Sept. 3, 2009 / 14 Elul 5769

Hypocrisy hoedown

By Jonah Goldberg




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Are Republicans hypocrites for caring about the deficit? Maybe. But that's OK.


The tricky thing about cries of hypocrisy in a two-party system is that the accusation almost always cuts both ways. The Democrats say "cats are the best!" and the Republicans say "dogs rule!" A couple of elections later, the Democrats suddenly discover they need dogs more than cats and switch positions. Republicans immediately whine about Democratic hypocrisy, even as they meet with important members of the feline community to say, "See, the Democrats are abandoning you. We have room for cats in the GOP's big tent." This in turn causes Democrats to vent their spleens about the GOP's own hypocrisy, reminding voters of the Republican Party's long history of indifference to the litter-box-using community.


The same dynamic can be found in debates about any number of issues, from race relations and foreign policy to trade and Supreme Court appointments. The parties, and their partisans, switch sides like boys and girls at a square dance and then shout "hypocrite!" at each other from either side of the political barn.


Perhaps nowhere is that more true than the typically soporific issue of budget deficits. For decades, Republicans were the budget hawks, green eyeshades firmly in place, deploring the profligate habits of liberal Democrats who cared too little about deficit spending. Then, as the Reagan deficits ballooned (with the aid of a fiscally promiscuous Democratic Congress) the right started caring less about deficit spending, while the left suddenly saw an opportunity to rehabilitate its image as bleeding-heart hippies spending somebody else's money.


By the 1990s, the Democratic Party under Bill Clinton managed to fashion itself into the party of responsible budget hawks while Republicans were branded as the party that didn't care about debt if tax cuts were on the line. By 2002, Dick Cheney allegedly said in a private conversation (he denies it) that "deficits don't matter." And throughout the George Bush years, Democrats screamed bloody murder about W's rivers of red ink.


Now Barack Obama is president and the deficit do-si-do begins anew. Suddenly, leading liberals are less concerned about the deficit while Republicans are fretting about the "intergenerational theft" of borrowing trillions from our children and grandchildren. In response, Democrats say Republicans can't complain about the deficit because they didn't care about deficits very much when Bush was president. Republicans, in turn, say Democrats are hypocrites because throughout the Bush years, they had complained about Bush's out-of-control deficits.


Now, part of the problem is that neither side actually much cares about deficits qua deficits. The Democrats didn't like what Bush was borrowing money to spend on, chiefly the war and, by Democratic accounting, his tax cuts. Similarly, the Republicans don't like the idea of going deeper into hock for corporate bailouts, the deeply flawed stimulus and, possibly, socialized medicine.


A larger problem, however, is that the hypocrisy hoedown gives the impression that everybody simply gets a turn at fueling America's runaway debt. And as fair as that might seem according to schoolyard logic, the trouble is that with every new turn, the situation gets worse.


In 1981, when America's accumulated debt was creeping up on $1 trillion, President Reagan explained in his first address to Congress, "I've been trying … to think of a way to illustrate how big a trillion really is. And the best I could come up with is that if you had a stack of $1,000 bills in your hand only 4 inches high, you'd be a millionaire. A trillion dollars would be a stack of $1,000 bills 67 miles high."


Obama's budget will have, for the first time, a single year deficit of $1 trillion and, according to the Obama administration's own projections, the same stack will be over 600 miles high ($9 trillion) at the end of 10 years, and that might be optimistic. Obama's 2009 budget deficit will be greater than all of the Bush deficits from 2002 to 2007 combined, according to the Heritage Foundation's Brian Riedl. And none of this takes into account that Obama's health care ambitions, nevermind cap and trade, could swell the deficit much more, if realized. Nor does it take into account the fact that unless the economy revives, tax revenues will continue to plummet as they have been (this year saw the greatest drop-off of receipts since 1932), which would make the shortfall even worse.


All that debt will need to be paid off. Every dollar going toward debt cannot be invested in a new business, a school or a weapons program. At least not in America. The Chinese might take some of the return on American bonds and invest it.


Are Republicans hypocrites for suddenly caring about all of this? Sure, OK. But that doesn't make them wrong. Just as suddenly not caring about any of it doesn't make the Democrats right.

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.


To comment on JWR contributor Jonah Goldberg's column click here.

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