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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 Jan 14, 2013/ 3 Shevat, 5773

Identity crisis in the GOP

By David Shribman




JewishWorldReview.com | Let's start with two unavoidable truths: The country's fiscal crisis has not been addressed, and the battle to redefine the Republican Party will occur long before any presidential candidates land in Iowa and New Hampshire.

Congress addressed barely a fraction of the economic conditions it was hired to fix. The battle over spending has yet to begin -- and the one about entitlements hasn't even been engaged.

The struggle over the future of the Republican Party? It won't wait until campaigning for the caucuses on the prairies and the primary in the mountains three years from now.

Republicans may be talking wistfully about Jeb Bush and Bobby Jindal, but the fact that I have to tell you Jindal is the governor of Louisiana tells you how premature -- how beside the point -- the presidential speculation is.

The GOP problem has many dimensions. One is that a dozen Republicans voted against the re-election of their own speaker. One is that that speaker was rendered irrelevant by his own caucus during the December drama over the fiscal cliff. Another is that the Republican caucus in the 113th Congress may be even more militant than the one in the last Congress.

But there is more. The division between the Republicans' isolationists and neoconservatives has never been addressed, let alone healed, and the nomination of former GOP Sen. Chuck Hagel to be defense secretary will likely exacerbate those tensions. The other division in the party -- the one between regulars and tea partiers -- is far deeper and far more significant than the GOP split of the last generation, between religious conservatives and economic conservatives.

That division may have grown in the past week, with the swearing-in of new lawmakers who received big contributions in their teacups for the fall election. These legislators would have voted against the fiscal cliff legislation -- and would have added to the chorus of those criticizing House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, increasingly the symbol of fecklessness and compromise, two words melded in meaning in the capital in recent years.

These lawmakers will oppose any compromises with the president and will do so with political impunity. Some of them won Republican primaries against establishment figures who might have been lured into a grand bargain, or even an itty-bitty bargain. Their financial supporters and their districts will back them -- will cheer them on -- if they foment rebellion.

Capitol Hill hasn't see a generation of newcomers like the ones from the last two elections since the Watergate class of 1974, and those Democrats changed Congress indelibly. If you doubt it, consider whether the phrase "campaign finance reform" would have any meaning whatsoever if those Watergate babies hadn't been elected. Five of these political mastodons remain in Washington 38 years later. Their average American Conservative Union rating for 2011, the latest year for which figures are available, was under 6 on a scale of 100. (Two of the three members of the Utah House delegation won ratings over 95.)

All of this ferment on the right would be startling to a visitor from another age, accustomed to viewing Republicans as bland oatmeal, preoccupied by debts and deficits (but in many cases being dependable -- in fact, indispensable -- advocates for measures to extend rights to Americans left out or falling behind).

And yet the beginning of all wisdom in today's Republican Party is that the party's record against President Barack Obama is 1-4.

The GOP's lone victory came in the 2010 midterm congressional elections, which is not insignificant; it changed the chemistry of Congress. But its defeats are perhaps more important: The president's two election triumphs, the passage of Obamacare and last month's fiscal cliff. Obama, the only Democratic president in three-quarters of a century to win a majority victory twice in a row, may not have a ferocious fastball, but he has mastered the slider and the curve.

He has also struck out the speaker repeatedly. It is Boehner's sad lot to fight a two-front war, one with the president, the other with the firebrands in his caucus. He says he won't negotiate with the president anymore. He can't avoid negotiating with his own members.

The rebellion he faces has few precedents, the most recent being the emergence in the 1980s of the Boll Weavil Democrats, who favored tax and spending cuts during the speakership of Thomas P. O'Neill Jr. of Massachusetts. Democrats then could defect to the other party -- Phil Gramm of Texas was the most prominent -- but that option is not available to today's rebels. They're stuck in the GOP, and the GOP is stuck with them.

The Republicans -- all of them, not just the rebels -- now are saying that the passage of the New Year's Day fiscal-cliff legislation marks the end of the tax debate and the beginning of the spending debate. They may be right. But not necessarily.

If they define tax increases as any increase in revenues through direct assessments on taxpayers -- and many do -- they may be wrong. Some proposals to shore up Social Security involve increased revenues, perhaps by lifting or eliminating the income ceiling on individual contributions, now set at $113,700. (By the way, wasn't the quiet elevation of that ceiling by $3,600 at the start of the year a tax increase?) And that's only one example.

The Republicans have put away the tax tool. Obama may not have.

An equally vital question is the face Republicans present to a public that is undergoing dramatic demographic changes and that signaled only two months ago that it is moving away from the Republicans. Stated simply: The Republic is growing less white while the Republicans are growing more so.

The two unavoidables are haunting the GOP: death (of the old political demographics) and taxes (of any sort).

The other day BuzzFeed, a source not ordinarily cited on op-ed pages, declared the presidential election in the Czech Republic "the most interesting election in the world." They might be right. Don't miss the candidate with the facial tattoos.

But there is almost no contest for the crown for the most interesting political party in the world. It's the party that for decades was the dullest party in the world. Praise the Lord and pass the teacup.

Comment by clicking here.

David Shribman, a Pulitzer Prize winner in journalism, is executive editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.


Previously:



01/07/13 History meets firearms
12/31/12 In search of our better angels
12/24/12 Wounded in war, Inouye just kept serving his country
12/10/12 President as change agent
12/10/12 Another overtime election
12/03/12 Defining the Obama presidency: Our re-elected chief executive has the whip hand now, but how will he use
11/19/12 New Hampshire 2016
11/12/12 Obama's second chance
11/05/12 America's first martyr to free speech
10/29/12 Making hay in Iowa
10/15/12 When two men confronted each other from afar as civilization hung in the balance
10/08/12 If you look at the election a certain way, things don't seem so terrible
10/01/12 Debating the debates
09/24/12 Pessimists R Us
08/20/12 Obama remains a puzzle even as he asks the American people for a second chance
08/13/12 With Ryan, Romney upends the conversation
08/06/12 The real Romney remains hidden behind other people's opinions
07/30/12 What summer is for: How August can matter, and how Romney might use it
07/23/12 The Independent son of independent Maine promises to shake up Washington
07/16/12 The Rambler American
07/09/12 The Telstar revolution: Fifty years ago, a 3-foot orb was sent aloft and spawned a new era in communications
07/02/12 It's got only four electoral votes, but Romney and Obama will be fighting for them
06/25/12 A little noted rebellion over a lonely stretch of land helps tell the American story
06/18/12 You're nothing special: Luck is what you make of it . . . and what it makes of you
06/11/12 Anybody can talk authoritatively about the presidential election. Here's how
06/04/12 Candidates love to ally themselves with admired presidents, in sometimes unexpected ways
05/29/12 Americans aren't in a new burst of patriotism but they are in a new burst of appreciation for the military
05/21/12 Inside out: Almost nothing about this year's presidential election conforms to conventional analysis
05/14/12 Lugar grew into an elder statesman, which is why he'll be leaving the Senate
05/07/12 50 years later, MacArthur's farewell to arms continues to inspire
04/30/12 The likability factor: We're going to find out how important it is in these troubled times
04/23/12 Romney's four battles: With the nomination essentially in hand, he must turn to new challenges
04/16/12 For GOPers, expect the frustration to build, not abate
04/09/12 The political battles you cannot see
04/02/12 Romney's roadmap: Doing better in Democratic states may complicate his fall campaign
03/26/12 Romney struggles with same GOP forces his father faced long ago
03/19/12 The writer and the president
03/12/12 Romney could learn from his rivals after Super Tuesday
03/05/12 The GOP race continues, and Republicans continue to grouse about their choices
02/27/12 The turnout threat: when voters vamoose
02/20/12 The Winter's Tale: Republicans are engaged in a 'problem play,' full of psychological, and real, drama
02/13/12 Which Ike to like?
02/08/12 A tale of two elections: Voters today are making their most profound choice since 1912
01/30/12 Whither the GOP establishment?
01/23/12 The Democratic coalition is breaking up
01/09/12 The verdict that wasn't
01/02/12 These are the keys to who will persist
12/19/11 Another Gingrich rebellion
12/12/11 A defining fight for the GOP
12/05/11 A distinct lack of enthusiasm
11/28/11 For GOPers, the winds are beginning to pick up, the horizon is darkening
11/21/11 Today's polarized politics . . . blame FDR and the political scientists
11/11/11The sporting life
11/07/11 Ron Paul, true believer
10/31/11 Why Cain isn't able
10/10/11 GOP starting over
10/03/11 The Forgotten War of 1812
09/26/11 The way we live now
09/19/11 The crisis this time
09/11/11 But what will it mean?
09/05/11 A horse race column: Who might win the GOP nomination and how it might unfold
08/29/11 The vacuum calls
08/22/11 Passion and politics: How Barack Obama and Mitt Romney got crowded into the same dangerous corner
08/15/11 Eleanor's little village
08/08/11 The agony of August
08/01/11 The politics of the impossible: What a country this might be if the political class served the broad interests of the majority
07/25/11 Pennant fever grips 'Burgh
07/18/11 Exemplar of an era
07/11/11 On summer
07/04/11 The soul of the party
06/27/11 What the Secretary said
06/20/11 Romney has big advantages over his rivals, but they will be coming after him
06/06/11 One question each
05/30/11 The 14-week challenge
05/23/11 Delay tactics
05/16/11 Republicans are waiting
05/09/11 Bin Laden is dead. What does it mean?
05/02/11 From nobodies to nominees
04/25/11 The founders left slavery for future generations to settle, and we still haven't fully come to terms with it
04/18/11 From audacious to cautious
04/11/11 Dreaming of space
12/12/10 The GOP takes control
12/06/10 DECEMBER 7
11/29/10 GOP presidential hopefuls already are lining up local supporters in what is now a red state
11/22/10 Burning down the House
11/15/10 Institutions of higher learning are finally beginning to teach important lifeskills
11/04/10 The war has just begun
11/01/10 Echoes of a speech 40 years ago this week still resonate today
10/25/10 50 years ago America chose between two men who were dramatically different --- and eerily similar





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