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 May 16, 2005 / 7 Iyar, 5765

It's the Third Way, Old Chap

By Michael Barone

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | LONDON—British politics and American politics have things in common. They are both conducted in English (well, mostly; there is campaigning in Spanish and Welsh). They both have general elections in which chief executives are chosen in a roundabout way rooted in history. They have tended to have elections conducted within a few months of each other. But there are differences. The party of the right won in America in 2000 and 2004. The party of the left won in Britain in 2001 and 2004.

But there is a more profound difference. "There is no alternative," Margaret Thatcher proclaimed in the 1980s to critics of her policies. British politics for the last 25 years has been a struggle by the parties to define themselves as the only plausible alternative and to define their opponents as unacceptable. The Conservatives under Mrs. Thatcher were able to do that in the 1980s. The Labour Party under Tony Blair was able to do that in the 1990s and up through the election last Thursday. Only in 1992 was there a genuinely close election between the two major parties, the first since Mrs. Thatcher was first elected in 1979.

In American politics, in contrast, neither side has been able to define the other as unacceptable to a majority of voters, going back at least to the 1984 election, and arguably back to 1964. Democrats and Republicans have had shifting percentages of the vote, but have been competitive.

What does the British election (and British politics) tell us about American politics?

  • It suggests that Third Way politics is, after a while, fissiparous. It is an unstable chemical compound which, when it sticks together, is very powerful, but which tends to fall apart. And when it does, the center-left party becomes simply left.

    Mr. Blair accepted Thatcherism, promised restraint in growth of government and reform of services, and backed a robust foreign policy. He created genuine enthusiasm from 1994 to 1997: Spin worked. But services remain ragged. Education and crime have not been solved, and New Labour's authoritarianism has sparked some protest.

    The robust foreign policy was fine with the left when Mr. Blair worked with Bill Clinton but not when he worked with George Bush. The rise in government spending, payrolls and deficits has not caused trouble yet, since the economy has remained sound. But it could provide an opening if the economy turns sour.

  • It suggests that a right party that wants to be a center-right party needs to combine economic and cultural conservatives. The problem in Britain is that there aren't very many cultural conservatives except on issues like immigration and crime— which can easily get a party labeled racist. There is no equivalent of the American religious right: Tony Blair is the Christian leader of a pagan country.

  • It suggests that American nationalism is indeed exceptional. Mr. Blair stood and listened while opponents lambasted the war and the BBC allowed no positive case for it whatever to be made. No pride in Britain taking a lead role in liberating the Middle East; Mr. Blair just asked credit for sincerity in what he was doing.

    Previous British prime ministers who worked closely with American presidents delighted in celebrating Britain's role in advancing freedom and acknowledging her historical traditions. Mr. Blair has little use for British traditions— he established a separate Scottish Parliament, changed the voting in the House of Lords and abolished the ancient office of Lord Chancellor— and seems less interested in proclaiming British nationalism than in promoting European postnationalism.

  • It suggests that a politics of centrism and caution doesn't bring out new voters. Turnout was up only slightly, a big contrast with the U.S. elections of 2004. Popular votes for New Labour declined from 1997 to 2001 and from 2001 to 2005.

Trust in a Third Way leader tends to grow ragged over time. And holding a big coalition together can be trouble. You can identify places where Iraq, immigration, services and spending hurt Mr. Blair and New Labour. In this British election, tactical voting was no longer directed against Conservatives, but more against Labour. If, as seems likely, the Labour government moves left under Mr. Blair and his certain successor, Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown, there is room for the Conservatives to emerge as a plausible alternative.

We had our own Third Way with Mr. Clinton. Trust in him and his project frayed too. Unlike Mr. Blair, he let his domestic policy be shaped by the Republican opposition— welfare reform, balanced budget, '97 Medicare. Approval of his performance remained high enough to make Al Gore competitive in 2000. But fraying trust cost left votes to Ralph Nader. Any Third Way left party risks defections from the left, which is inherently flaky. That, at least, is one thing America and Britain have in common.

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Hard America, Soft America: Competition vs. Coddling and the Battle for the Nation's Future  

America is divided into two camps, according to U.S. News and World Reports writer and Fox commentator Michael Barone. No, not Red and Blue, though one suspects Barone may taint the two groups in the hues of the 2000 presidential election. Barone's divided America is one part Hard, one part Soft. Hard America is steeled by the competition and accountability of the free market, while Soft America is the product of public school and government largesse. Inspired by the notion that America produces incompetent 18 year olds and remarkably competent 30 year olds, Barone embarks on a breezy 162-page commentary that will spark mostly huzzahs from the right and jeers from the left. Sales help fund JWR.

JWR contributor Michael Barone is a columnist at U.S. News & World Report. Comment by clicking here.

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