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 July 16, 2008 / 13 Tamuz 5768

Sophisticated politician proves to be one swift flip-flopper

By Jonathan Gurwitz

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | About many things, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright is spectacularly and self-righteously wrong.

But about his most famous parishioner of 20 years, he got it correct. In an April interview with Bill Moyers, Wright said Barack Obama "goes out as a politician and says what he has to say as a politician."

A few days later, he clarified the point at the National Press Club: "Politicians say what they say and do what they do based on electability, based on sound bites, based on polls."

Remember Obama in his widely praised speech on race in Philadelphia in March? He said he could no more disown the Rev. Wright — "imperfect as he may be" — than he could disown the black community or his grandmother.

After Wright's comments with Moyers and at the National Press Club, it was a different story. Obama was all about disowning.

The irony is that Obama had for years neglected to disavow the demonstrably false statements of his pastor that were patently offensive to a broad swath of the American people. But when Wright spoke truthfully about an issue that could only be offensive to a thin-skinned politician, Obama kicked his spiritual mentor to the curb.

People are entitled to change their minds. And changing one's opinion in light of changing facts is a virtue. But if you're running for a position of political leadership — not least the office of commander in chief — the public is entitled to know why you've done so.

So what changes Barack Obama's mind? One month, Jeremiah Wright is an honored member of his African American Religious Leadership Committee. The next month, Obama said Wright "was presenting a worldview that contradicts who I am and what I stand for."

As an aspiring politician in Chicago in 1996, Obama staked out a position on a candidate questionnaire supporting legislation to ban the manufacture, sale and possession of handguns. When the Supreme Court struck down the District of Columbia's ban on handguns — and after he had alienated people who cling to guns and religion — Obama said the D.C. law "overshot the runway."

At the American Israel Public Affairs Committee's policy conference, Obama spoke clearly about his commitment to Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel. Days later he retracted that commitment, telling CNN's Fareed Zakaria that it was an example of "poor phrasing."

On the campaign trail, Obama pledged to filibuster a FISA bill that gave retroactive immunity to telecommunications companies. This month, he voted for a bill with precisely that provision, describing it as "a marked improvement over last year's Protect America Act."

Battling Hillary Clinton for votes in the Rust Belt, Obama denounced NAFTA as a devastating mistake. Questioned about his vilification of the trade pact in a Fortune interview after he secured the Democratic nomination, Obama struck a chord that sounded distinctly Wright-like: "Sometimes during campaigns the rhetoric gets overheated and amplified. Politicians are always guilty of that, and I don't exempt myself."

John McCain, to be sure, is also guilty. His campaign's essential problem, however, is lack of focus.

Obama, on the other hand, articulates his positions with perfect clarity to serve one political purpose — then alters them to serve another. From faith-based initiatives to the public financing of campaigns and American flag lapel pins, Obama delivers change we can believe in. And anyone who has fallen for his promise to remove all combat forces from Iraq within 16 months should not be surprised if that promise changes, too.

Rev. Wright was right. Obama, despite his immense talent and intellect, is at base a conventional politician.

What is unconventional is how quickly and how drastically he has changed his positions on so many issues, and how so many people so caught up in the messianic aura of Obamamania were so gullible to believe he would do otherwise.

Note: In a recent column, I made reference to a moving photo that appeared on the front page of the New York Times. The Times' caption described a child who was allegedly injured in political violence by forces loyal to Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe. The Times has subsequently issued a lengthy correction stating that the child's mother had exaggerated the extent of the injuries.

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JWR contributor Jonathan Gurwitz, a columnist for the San Antonio Express-News, is a co-founder and twice served as Director General of the Future Leaders of the Alliance program at NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. In 1986 he was placed on the Foreign Service Register of the U.S. State Department.

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© 2007, Jonathan Gurwitz