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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 Jan. 3, 2014/ 2 Shevat, 5774

Where greed is not good

By Wesley Pruden




JewishWorldReview.com | "Greed is good," Gordon Gekko, the famous movie villain of Wall Street, told us. But only for a little while. Eventually greed costs too much, as some of the owners of professional football are learning this weekend.

Three of the four clubs in the playoffs can't sell all their tickets, and without a sellout their fans can't watch the game on television because the city — not only the city but the region — is blacked out. The owners arranged this years ago to intimidate fans into buying tickets, or else.

Tickets cost up to $300 each, or more, depending on the city and the club, but the billionaire owners and millionaire players can't understand why anybody should object. Isn't everyone who isn't a billionaire a millionaire?

The owners reckon the only solution to the falling away of their fans is to emulate the taxpayer-supported Public Broadcasting System, and hold endless beg-o-ramas,. In Cincinnati, where the Bengals made the playoffs, the club management shot a video with several players pleading with fans to buy tickets. One former player, made a millionaire by the fans, said he would buy the 8,000 unsold tickets, but this turned out to be merely a boast that he was rich enough to do it. He was only joking.

In Green Bay, where the Packers have cultivated the legend that people put their newborn babies on the waiting list for tickets in the hope that one day they, too, might have the opportunity spend a few hours on a Sunday in the thrill of sleet and freezing rain so the owners can enjoy the warmth of a fire and sipping 12-year-old Scotch in their luxury boxes.

Dirty players who get away with slap shots across the side of a helmet or a thumb in the eye of a defender could learn a lot about the art of the gouge by watching executives from the front office. Parking is beyond priceless, and some clubs use fencing to make the lucky fan who finds a parking place on the street or in someone's front yard take an endless walk around the stadium to find a way to his seat. Who can afford the $7 hot dog or the $10 styrofoam cup of warm beer after paying $300 for his ticket and another $50 to park the car?



Some clubs, like the one in Cincinnati, are appealing to municipal patriotism. "NFL playoff games are rare and wonderful chances for communities to showcase their communities in front of a national TV audience of roughly 30 million viewers," the Bengal front office says, urging fans to buy tickets.

The gougers remain excited about Sunday's game, and how football can make everybody happy, healthy and prosperous, but only if the gougees do their part. "However," the Bengal owners said, "we need to be candid that unless our daily rate of sales increases we will not achieve a sellout and the game will not be televised in Cincinnati, Dayton or Lexington, Ky., per NFL policy."

Television's fountain of money has all but ruined the appeal of sports, even at the college level, where coaches are paid multiples of millions annually, where loyalty to the old school has disappeared and the players, no longer satisfied with a free education (such as it might be) and public adulation before they retire to bagging groceries or drawing unemployment checks, are demanding part of the loot at the gate.

You might think that it would occur to the owners, or university presidents who are the owners at the college level, that strangling the golden goose is not a long-term strategy for success. Fans, reading about ridiculous salaries paid to players who are often just this side of illiterate and owners who would shame Gordon Gekko, get no relief from escalating ticket prices.

Mr. Gekko, in fact, has gone to work for the government to warn everyone not to be like him. Michael Douglas, the actor who portrayed the fictional Mr. Gekko, says greed is not so good. Now he tells us. He will make television commercials for the FBI, promoting its "Perfect Hedge" campaign against insider trading on Wall Street. The campaign will include real-life wiretaps from 57 successful prosecutions for financial fraud on the street.

"In the movie," he says, "I played a greedy corporate executive who cheated to profit while innocent investors lost their savings. The movie was fiction, but the problem is real."

Greed has its uses, but it costs, a lesson Gordon Gekko learned to his sorrow. There's a lesson here for the heroes and the bums of sport if they're smart enough to learn it.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Wesley Pruden is editor emeritus of The Washington Times. Comment by clicking here.

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