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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 Nov. 26, 2010 / 16 Kislev, 5771

Plain English gets a November revival

By Wesley Pruden




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | LOS ANGELES --- Life is not easy out there for a liberal, or a progressive or an elitist or whatever liberals are calling themselves this morning. Particularly in California, where dreamy Democrats feel cozy and safe, supping on lotus, unmolested by reality.

California's Proposition 26, adopted by a vote of 53 percent to 47 percent — not a landslide but not a squeaker — severely restricts the ability of city, county and state governments to tell whoppers about taxes. Specifically, it tells the bureaucrats they can no longer impose a tax and call it something vague and ambiguous, like a "user fee." They can no longer get around a state constitutional requirement that taxes must be approved by a two-thirds majority vote or by public referendum.

There's a mad scramble in the wood-paneled boardrooms at city halls from Chula Vista in the south to Oregon in the north to deal with the most draconian attempt to stifle the runaway growth of government since Howard Jarvis' Proposition 13 cut property taxes by 57 percent three decades ago.

This year's Prop 26, in addition to severely crimping the bloated schemes of the tax men, attempts to teach lessons in plain English to those who need them most. Echoing Voltaire's observation that "one great use of words is to hide our thoughts," Prop 26 makes it more difficult to call a tax a user fee — which can be endorsed by a mere majority. "[Prop 26] clarifies what is a tax and what is a fee," says the chief executive of the California Chamber of Commerce, the biggest contributor to the campaign to enact Prop 26. "California just got a lot harder to govern," complains the California director of the Sierra Club. Translation: Californians just got a lot harder to punish and abuse in the name of "good government."

California governments have chased a lot of business out of the state with "user fees" tacked onto high taxes, and the "good government" advocates of more spending and higher taxes, many of them clutching tightly to college diplomas as evidence of their intelligence, wit and judgment, still can't figure out why. The call-a-tax-a-tax initiative is aimed at government abuse not only of big business but at punishment of small business as well. The government in Sacramento lusts to impose a surcharge on every barrel of oil and a "cap-and-trade" "fee" on greenhouse gases. The liberals/progressives are determined to paint the state a deep, deep shade of green, whether it actually cleans up anything or not.

But not just on industry. User fees are aimed at the poor as well as the wealthy, ranging from new taxes on cigarettes to pay for trash pickups and on new levies on booze to pay for schools and law enforcement. Los Angeles County wants to ban plastic grocery bags and impose a 10-cent tax on paper bags. You could buy all the groceries, you want, but to avoid the tax, you could leave the groceries at the store. Too bad for the bureaucrats at Los Angeles City Hall, Prop 26 mandates that these user taxes must be called by their rightful name and subject to a two-thirds supermajority.

The contentious campaign for Prop 26 and the eventual approval by California voters was eerily similar to the Jarvis campaign to slash taxes on homes in 1973. Jarvis, who died in 1986, was derided by Time magazine as "surly" and "arrogant" and "when the mikes were turned off, he just raised his voice so that you never knew the microphone was dead. Many times they had to call the sergeant-at-arms to persuade him to sit down."

But Jarvis rarely sat down and gave as good as he got. He didn't listen to the timid marketing men who urged him to soften his language, and he described the cocktail-party Republicans in opposition as "the stupidest people in the world except for businessmen, who have a genius for stupidity." The oh-so-proper League of Women Voters, which led the prissy opposition, was "a bunch of nosy broads who front for the big spenders." The tax issue, he said, "is Armageddon, a war of machetes. They're going to cut off our heads, or we're going to cut off theirs."

On election night, after he had won 70 percent of the votes, he gloated that "now we know how it felt when they dumped English tea into Boston Harbor." Nov. 2 of this year proved again that tea, even in blue-green California, can be 90-proof stuff.

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

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