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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 July 23, 2013/ 16 Menachem-Av, 5773

Waiting for the Repo Man

By Wesley Pruden




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Someone knocked on the door at City Hall in Detroit last week and there stood the Repo Man. He had come to take possession of the city. Everyone who has ever bought a car knows you have to keep up the payments. Miss three or four and the car, with all its bells and whistles, is gone.

Detroit, which has built a lot of cars, should have known better, but ignored the frantic calls. There's not a lot to repossess in Detroit, a city that nobody wants.

Detroit isn't the first city in America to the stigma of bankruptcy, not that there's much stigma about anything any longer in America. Detroit won't be the last. Municipal bankruptcy and stigma are the new reality. Scariest of all, Detroit is a hint, and a persuasive one, of what lies ahead for the rest of us. Only yesterday, who could have imagined a Repo Man coming after America.

"Yeah, we're broke, we're not na´ve," Mitch Albom, the best-selling novelist ("Tuesdays with Morrie" and "The First Five People You Meet in Heaven") writes in the Detroit Free Press. "We know it. We expected it. We watched for years as our leaders mismanaged funds, made patchwork repairs, borrowed and borrowed and didn't pay back. Does that sound familiar? Hasn't our federal government done the same?"

Only four decades ago Detroit could still revel in its reputation as "the arsenal of democracy," as FDR called it on the eve of World War II. Detroit built the trucks and tanks that won that war. Everybody who wanted one had a job. Now it has been reduced by profligacy, corruption and dissolution to a punchline for jokes by late-night television comics. "It was a perfect storm," says Mitch Albom. "We're built for 2 million. We're down to 700,000 people. We're too big for our numbers. We're too small for our britches."


Detroit feels abandoned. Gov. Rich Snyder discourages hope of a federal bail-out, like the bail-outs of General Motors and Chrysler. "It's not about just putting more money in a situation. It's about better services to citizens again. It's about accountable government." But even if the governor, a Republican, wanted to try for a bail-out he wouldn't find anyone in Washington eager to oblige him. Spending more than you have and arranging bail-outs for the profligate is what President Obama has been about since he was a "community organizer." But that was then.

The president, who only yesterday was full of big talk about all the good things he would do for Detroit, doesn't want to get any closer to Motown now than the suburbs of Toledo. Jay Carney, the president's mouthpiece, curtly dismissed a question about whether there could be a bail-out, since Mr. Obama in the past has wanted to bail out everything. "I would point you to what we have said and what leaders in Michigan and Detroit have said, which is that on the matter of their insolvency, that's something for the city and the creditors to resolve. We're concerned, obviously, about the citizens of Detroit and of the state, and continuing to assist Detroit in moving forward."

The vice president headed for a hiding place, too. "Can we help Detroit?" he said, responding to a reporter's question. "We don't know." This was small help from an administration that insists it knows everything, and champions the governing philosophy - spend what you have and borrow as much as you can from whatever suckers you can find - that set Detroit on the road to ruin.

Dire and precarious as Detroit's condition may be, some people haven't learned anything. The unions, whose demands wrecked the city, are suing and Rosemarie Acquilina, a county judge, tried to stop the bankruptcy last week, attempting to suspend the federal proceedings because bankruptcy would imperil pensions, "cheating good people who work." Besides, the proceedings would not "honor the president," who once posed as the man who would save Detroit.

The imperiled pensions are not outrageously high. They average only $19,000 a year for city employees and $30,000 for cops and firemen, though a retired chief gets $92,000 annually. The emergency city manager wants to make "significant cuts" to the pensions of current holders of those pensions, though the state constitution calls them contracts that "shall not be dimijnished or impaired."

It's the accumulation of incompetence, fraud and years of graft and boodling that has made City Hall a casino for bunco artists, and brought once-great Detroit low. It's an object lesson for the rest of us.

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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