December 2, 2014
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
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
: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain
April 14, 2014
Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time
: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic
: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships
: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin
: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate
: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure
April 11, 2014
Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden
: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does
: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer
: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You
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
: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau
: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease
April 8, 2014
Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease
Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear
April 4, 2014
A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children
Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet
Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds
Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves
April 2, 2014
Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?
Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities
It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene
Jewish World Review
March 21, 2014 / 19 Adar II, 5774
The GOP's need for creative policy
Of all the signs of Democratic midterm trouble, it is fitting that Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius— who has already contributed so much — should make another important offering. She recently assured the House Ways and Means Committee that health insurance premium increases
next year would be “far less significant than what they were prior to the Affordable Care Act.”
Over the past several years, increases in insurance premiums have averaged nearly 6 percent. Because of the rocky launch, age distribution and delayed provisions of Obamacare exchanges, insurance company officials expect far larger premium increases this spring — in the double digits, if not the triple digits, in many places.
This is an administration that learns nothing. Rather than preparing people for increased premiums, and trying to explain the additional benefits of the new system, it says, in effect: If you like your current health insurance premium, you can keep your current health insurance premium. What must Democratic candidates around the country think of another round of Obamacare overpromising? In Iowa, for example, rates on the exchange are expected to rise by 100 percent — which will be defended by a Democratic Senate candidate polling under 50 percent.
When it comes to bad electoral news for Democrats, just throw this on the pile. Midterm elections — in which the electorate tends to be older and whiter — are an inherently easier environment for Republicans. The distribution of vulnerable Democratic Senate seats in Republican-leaning states further tilts the playing field. President Obama’s low approval rating
portends serious Democratic reverses. The recent special election in Florida demonstrated that a strong, well-funded Democratic candidate who had never voted for Obamacare could be defeated by a weak Republican candidate who had no issue except Obamacare.
Some Republicans are anticipating a “tsunami” — with the hubris of reporting weather at a distance of seven months. But Republicans really only need a stiff wind to gain a Senate majority.
How that victory is secured, however, will determine its meaning.
One option is for congressional Republicans to lie low, avoid mistakes, and trust in time and the political tides. Pushing a serious governing agenda might divide the caucus and distract attention from Obama’s failings.
Although doing nothing is a finely honed congressional skill, it presents problems in this case. A contentless victory, paradoxically, would encourage ideological over-interpretation. Many conservatives would envision the end of Obamacare, the death throes of liberalism and a galloping constitutionalist mandate — forgetting the temporary midterm demographic advantage, the temporarily favorable map and the temporary conditions of a president’s sixth year. Activist groups would have leave to demand impossible outcomes and blame Republican leaders for weakness. Republicans, again, might be defined by maximal expectations that are off-putting to many Americans.
This approach also would do nothing to solve the long-term problems of a party that has lost four out of the past six presidential elections while progressively alienating young, female and minority voters. And no answer to the 47 percent question: Do Republicans care about struggling and working-class voters?
The alternative is for Republicans to spend the next several months filling their likely victory with the content of creative policies on health care, higher education and social mobility. The search for a Republican Obamacare alternative illustrates the difficulty of such an effort. Paul Ryan’s proposal, while conceptually sound, might involve too much disruption in business-based plans. The House consensus is likely to consist of recycled ideas that don’t add up to an alternative. The Senate’s Coburn/Burr/Hatch approach — including continuous coverage, refundable tax credits and a default insurance option — strikes me as innovative and appropriately ambitious.
But it is not necessary to reach perfect consensus to pursue an effective strategy after November. The goal is more limited: Force Obama to veto creative and useful policy ideas instead of purely negative and frightening ones. Or maybe even get him to sign some popular, incremental measures.
This approach could both tame Republican expectations and aid reform-minded Republican presidential candidates in the 2016 primaries. Or at least make clear they are not entirely alone. Put another way: It is hard to imagine that a presidential candidate is going to have the courage to offer innovative policy ideas that congressional Republicans in safe seats in a strong year did not have the guts to offer.
With a win of some magnitude now likely in November, the urgent Republican task is summarized by the wartime poster of Winston Churchill: “Deserve Victory.”
Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.
Comment on Michael Gerson's column by clicking here.
03/18/14 Can Obama Rise To Carter's Level?
03/11/14 Ukraine shakes up the GOP debate over foreign policy
03/07/14 The U.S. retreats: History tells us who will fill the vacuum
02/28/14The GOP is struggling to redefine itself
02/25/14 Physics is enjoying a golden age
02/18/14 Syria's refugees: Assad uses mass atrocities in the civil war
02/11/14 Burke and Paine, a rivalry that still reverberates
02/03/14 A rendezvous with irrelevance
01/31/14 Obama's thin agenda: The State of the Union lacked a theme
01/28/14 Obama breeding distrust of liberalism
01/24/14 Our complex president: Is his intellectual style actually good leadership?
01/21/14 The power to intimidate . . . on the Left
01/17/14 Gates hits his target
12/31/13 A dismal year in politics, for Republicans and Democrats alike
12/24/13 The war on Christians
12/17/13 The exhausted parties: What have politicians accomplished?
12/06/13 My numbered days: My cancer diagnosis gave me the clarity of mortality
11/22/13 C.S. Lewis: Rescuing desire
11/19/13 Former bridge burner starting to build them to save GOP
11/15/13 Entrepreneurs of outrage: Fear and anger sweep up policy issues
11/01/13 What Obamacare has cost Dems
10/29/13 In 6 months will this column prove prophetic?
10/22/13 Obamacare repair: It could become a crisis for modern liberalism
10/04/13 The GOP should speed Obamacare's demise. Right now, it's not
10/03/13 The tea party's revolt
09/30/13 The end of compromise?
09/17/13 A state of paralysis: Congress, Obama need to act
09/12/13 In full retreat on Syria
09/10/13 Obama misunderstands wartime leadership
09/09/13 Rallying around a gesture
08/30/13 The preacher and the politician
08/27/13 Is Obama's oft-cited best-case scenario in Syria still even possible?
08/23/13 Jordan's wary welcome
08/20/13 The hardest goodbye: A parent letting go
08/16/13 For GOP, opposition shouldn't only mean obstruction
08/13/13 Crazy, humane determination creates breakthrough for millions
08/09/13 America's bubble of complacency
07/01/11 The GOP's ideal America
03/04/11 The last doughboy and the emergence of a great nation
03/01/11 Conservatives shouldn't be so surprised by freedom
02/22/11 The progression of pain
02/18/11 The seriousness primary
02/11/11 Do Egypt's protests mean American decline?
01/27/11 No-bend Obama
01/21/11 Two good arguments for civility -- and passion -- in politics
01/11/11 Obama's staff changes give him a second chance
01/11/11 Is Arizona shooting an empty search for meaning?
01/07/11 WikiLeaks gives dangerous ammunition to a tyrant
01/04/11 Michael Vick: Symbol of the second chance
12/28/10 Social Security reform is the answer to Obama's problems --- and the nation's
12/21/10 When foreign policy realism isn't realistic
12/17/10 When it comes to politics, Obama's ego keeps getting in the way
11/26/10 Libs resort to conspiracy theories to explain Obama's problems
11/19/10 With Holder at the helm, detainee policy is a disaster
11/12/10 Blue-state budget crises spell even more trouble for Dems
10/19/10 Obama the snob
10/12/10 Seeds of victory in Afghanistan
10/05/10 Believers' remorse
10/04/10 Pound-foolish on national security
09/28/10 Babylon on the Potomac
09/27/10 Our reluctant commander in chief
09/21/10 Blue strongholds are becoming Democratic graveyards
09/17/10 For the GOP, a bittersweet brew from the Tea Party
09/15/10: Insanity's great enablers
09/13/10: The lost communicator
09/08/10: Will 2010 midterms be 1994 all over again?
09/01/10: Obama's economic wandering
08/27/10: Miracles from abroad
08/25/10: Address these issues in order to strengthen the Tea Party
08/20/10: The lost promise of Barack Obama
07/23/10: Obama's greatest nightmare
02/04/09: The Reality of Innocence
01/07/09: The Risks in Obama's Ambitions
12/31/08: Support Obama Will Need
06/13/08: Prince Charles, Organic Conservatism Icon
06/11/08: No longer a bankrupt political joke but still overshadowed
04/23/08: McCain's anger management
04/10/08: A Country for Old Men
03/06/08: Does the America Need a Hug?
03/06/08: Obama's First 100 Days
02/29/08: Words Aren't Cheap
02/22/08: He Said, They Said
02/20/08: Dying silently in Zimbabwe
02/15/08: Hillary's Unappealing Path
02/13/08: NATO's Afghan Stumbles
02/08/08: Why McCain Endures
02/06/08: One surge that led to another
02/01/08: In North Korea, Process Over Progress
01/30/08: Compassionate to the end
© 2008, WPWG