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 Jan. 26, 2005 / 16 Shevat, 5765

Forced altruism

By John Stossel

Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | When you have a lot of money, you can pay for a lot of things other people can't afford. Does that mean you should be able to make other people pay for things they don't want?

Last November, the people of California decided to contribute $3 billion to stem-cell research. More precisely, 6.48 million people in California decided to do that; another 4.5 million voted not to, but they lost. Since California voted, other states are moving in the same direction. The Associated Press reports officials in Illinois, Wisconsin, New York and Connecticut are promoting state funding of stem-cell research. Last week, the acting governor of New Jersey, Richard J. Codey, announced that his state would spend $150 million to "build and equip" an institute for stem-cell research, which he asked New Jersey's voters to "put their faith behind" and fund with another $230 million.

In California, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger tapped Robert Klein, who led the California referendum campaign, to head his state's stem-cell program.

I spoke to Klein during the campaign. "We have to have this research," he said. "And in Washington, D.C., this research is paralyzed."

That's not exactly true. President Bush has limited embryonic stem-cell research that can be done with federal money. He has not blocked all use of federal funds for embryonic stem-cell research, and even the research the government won't sponsor remains legal. Researchers at Harvard, Vanderbilt and other private institutions are already spending millions on stem-cell study.

To treat denial of government funds for a particular research project as if it stopped that research entirely suggests a dangerous dependency. Much scientific progress has been the result of private initiative. Most new drug development comes from research funded by private companies. Just last year, a private plane reached space twice, inspired by a $10 million prize offered by private investors. In many cases, the only government support behind scientific progress has been the promise of a patent in order to channel private spending on a new technology to the person or company that created it. For other research, government didn't even do that much. We do not depend on the government for everything. Nor should we.

I happen to think stem-cell research is a good idea: Take an embryo that hasn't come close to consciousness and never will, harvest its stem cells, and work to save the lives of people who are desperate to live. But many Americans think that an embryo is already a person with a right to life and that to kill it is murder. Why should people who think abortion is murder be forced to pay for research that involves abortion?

Robert Klein thinks he can answer that question. "As a democracy," he told me, "we vote for public schools, and everyone contributes tax dollars to public schools. What we're doing here is really no different."

If that's true, where does it stop? California is already $53 billion in debt. This will add billions more.

And it's completely unnecessary. Many of the referendum's backers are among the richest people in America. Bill Gates has given billions to charity, but he and eBay founder Pierre Omidyar are so rich, they could pay the entire $3 billion themselves and still have $52 billion left. So why didn't they?

"I don't have those resources," Klein says, "and what we're trying to do is bring the society together." That sounds nice, until you realize that it's bringing society together by force for a cause many members of society consider absolutely immoral. Medical research isn't something, such as warfare or criminal law, that can only be handled by the government. It isn't even something, such as public education, that government has traditionally provided.

When I thought kidney research needed more money, I provided some of my own money. I didn't try to force others to give, too. The Associated Press says Klein has amassed a fortune, and in addition to Gates and Omidyar, he had movie stars behind his referendum. They have money. So, in varying quantities, do the 6.48 million people who voted yes in California; so do supporters of stem-cell research nationwide. They're free to contribute their own money to stem-cell research. Why should they get to use the power of government to force their opponents to pay for something those opponents consider murder?

Give Me a Break.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor John Stossel is co-anchor of ABC News' "20/20." To comment, please click here.

© 2005, by JFS Productions, Inc. Distributed by Creators Syndicate, Inc.