In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
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 Oct. 30, 2009 / 12 Mar-Cheshvan 5770

He Came, He Saw, He Kowtowed

By Jonah Goldberg

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It seems Rocco Landesman, the head of the National Endowment for the Arts, didn't get the memo, literally.

On Sept. 22, stung by controversy over the administration's effort to turn the arts community into proselytizers of its very special brand of hope and change, the White House issued a stern warning to all government agencies: Keep politics out of the arts.

The White House denied that was ever the intent. Many in the media, as is their wont, took the Obama administration at their word.

But not the Web site Big Government (which broke the story) and the Washington Times. They demonstrated that from the earliest days of the presidential transition, Barack Obama's political operation sought to entrench the arts community in its "outreach" operations. Bill Ivey, Obama's transition advisor on the arts, admitted in June: "I wanted to see some real connection between administration objectives and the capacity of all the cultural actors in government. I made some progress. I got some agreement."

That "progress" mostly came in the form of enlisting arts groups — groups that received stimulus money — in Obama's national service agenda.

Three days after Landesman was confirmed as the head of the NEA, his communications director, Yosi Sergant, told NEA grantees in a conference call: "I would encourage you to pick something, whether it's health care, education, the environment — you know, there's four key areas that the corporation has identified as the areas of service."

Two days later, a host of arts organizations endorsed Obama's health care plan: "We call on Congress to pass: A health care reform bill that will create a public health option. ... There is little time to waste ..." Of the 21 groups signing the statement, 16 had recently received grants from the NEA or were affiliated with organizations that had.

Sergant was thrown under the bus, and the Sept. 22 memo put an end to the story for the supportive media.

But the story continues. Last week, Landesman gave the keynote address to the 2009 Grantmakers in the Arts Conference. In fairness, Landesman did not reaffirm the White House and NEA's obvious initial intent to turn the allegedly independent government agency into an adjunct of Obama's "Organizing for America" operation. He was more subtle than that.

Instead, Landesman embraced a timeless tactic of power politics. He debased himself with incandescently vulgar obsequiousness to his supreme leader. "There is a new president and a new NEA," he proclaimed. "This is the first president that actually writes his own books since Teddy Roosevelt and arguably the first to write them really well since Lincoln. If you accept the premise, and I do, that the United States is the most powerful country in the world, then Barack Obama is the most powerful writer since Julius Caesar. That has to be good for American artists."

After more fawning praise for the "Optimist in Chief," he added that proof of Obama's desire to take the NEA in exciting new directions was the president's "out-of-left-field choice to head the NEA, a signal I certainly took to mean he wasn't interested in business-as-usual for the arts." One must trust that Landesman's interpretation of his own appointment is accurate.

Let us pause to reflect on Landesman's odd — by which I mean absurd — historical analysis. Obama has written two books, one good, the other a plodding concatenation of political clichés and bromides. Ulysses S. Grant's memoirs, published by Mark Twain, were a literary triumph. Woodrow Wilson wrote many books of great import but of less literary worth. JFK won a Pulitzer for one of his books — the one he didn't write, alas. But Richard Nixon wrote plenty, as did Herbert Hoover, including two definitive texts, one on mining, the other on fishing.

Oh, and Lincoln never wrote any books.

In short, Landesman doesn't know what he's talking about. But he does know what he's doing.

What matters to him is not the power of Obama's writing but the power of the writer. Why else compare a democratically elected president to one of history's most iconic dictators? That is unless we are to believe he is a huge fan of Caesar's "De Bello Gallico."

There have been far greater writers with power than Obama since Caesar. Among them: Thomas Jefferson, Winston Churchill, Jawaharlal Nehru, Benito Mussolini, Vladimir Lenin and Marcus Aurelius.

By displaying with brazenly self-abasing ignorance that he is wholly Obama's man, Landesman is making it clear that the NEA is completely committed to Obamaism. There's no need for any more of Mr. Sergant's tacky, Chicago-style pay-to-play. Self-humiliation sends a far more powerful signal.

No doubt the provincial official has pleased his Caesar.

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