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 Oct. 7, 2005 / 4 Tishrei, 5766

President winkin' blinkin' 'n' noddin'

By Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker
Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | President George W. Bush's baffling nomination of Harriet Miers, an inexperienced jurist and relatively unknown lawyer, to the U.S. Supreme Court has nearly everyone stumped. What was he thinking?

Of course that's the wrong verb. Thinking. When Bush has an important decision to make, he doesn't rely so much on intellectual skills as he does instinct. Like a shaman examining entrails for clues to the future, he prefers to divine a person's interior.

He was convinced four years ago, for example, that he and Russian leader Vladimir Putin were on the same page after the two cut a few wheelies around Bush's Crawford, Texas, ranch in the presidential pickup. Afterwards, Bush gave a thumbs-up to future Russia-U.S. relations, saying he and Putin were kindred spirits on Democratic principles.

"I was able to get a sense of his soul," Bush said.

When Putin later began concentrating the Kremlin's power and seizing control of the mass media, Bush might have reconsidered those shared values. As Richard Perle remarked: "When you gaze into souls, it's something you should update periodically, because souls can change."

Now, in nominating Miers to the Supreme Court, Bush says, "I know her heart."

"Trust me," he says.

Bush the First said, "Read my lips." Bush II effectively says, "Read my mind."

As Americans grapple with that prospect, pundits have shifted into overdrive. Constituents of Bush's Christian base are furious. Or so they say. The secular branch of the GOP, hoping for someone with more intellectual heft, feels sideswiped by his bullheaded arrogance. Democrats are suspicious, while Dr. James Dobson of Focus on the Family is talking to G-d.

On his radio broadcast a few days ago, Dobson — who mysteriously claims to know things about Miers that no one else knows — invoked G-d's guidance, begging the ultimate Judge to speak to him.

"If this is not the person you want on that Supreme Court, all you have to do is tell me so, and do it through any means you want to."

No Word yet, but we'll stay tuned. Meanwhile, I prefer to invoke the words and wisdom of a Southern politician for insight. Advising his older brother, the notorious Louisiana Gov. Huey Long, Earl Long, who also served as governor, reputedly said:

"Don't write anything you can phone. Don't phone anything you can talk. Don't talk anything you can whisper. Don't whisper anything you can smile. Don't smile anything you can nod. Don't nod anything you can wink."

Therein, I think, lies the key to Bush's modus operandi. He doesn't phone, talk or whisper his intentions, but he does give a little smile, a nod, a wink now and then — especially to his base. Are they not paying attention? Or is their feigned aggravation part of the game, a red herring to distract from their secret glee?

Bush, in fact, has a record of communicating in code to his base, often leaving the rest of the world flummoxed. During the Oct. 8, 2004, debate in the run-up to his re-election, when asked about whether he would apply a litmus test for Supreme Court nominees, Bush demurred with what seemed at the time like a head-swiveling non sequitur by invoking Dred Scott. No litmus test, he said, but he would not nominate anyone who would condone Dred Scott.

"Huh?" everyone said.

Subsequent deconstructions of Bush's comments revealed that "Dred Scott" is code for "Roe v. Wade" among pro-lifers. Dred Scott, of course, was the slave who in 1857 sought freedom after his master's death. The courts ruled against him, saying that even freed slaves couldn't be citizens and reinforcing the subhuman status of blacks in the U.S.

Pro-life advocates often refer to Dred Scott as a way of arguing against the inhumanity of Roe V. Wade and the sins of judicial activism. If constitutional amendments (13 and 14) nullified the Dred Scott ruling, why not a constitutional amendment to protect the unborn? So the thinking goes.

A strict constructionist, in the law's reformed view, would not condone the Dred Scott decision. In Bush's view, a strict constructionist also would not condone Roe v. Wade. When Bush asserts that Miers will be a strict constructionist, you can be almost certain he's delivering a Dred Scott wink.

Likewise, when Bush says he knows Miers' heart, he means her born-again heart, the one that mirrors his own. They are cut from the same evangelical cloth.

"Trust me," in other words, means: "Relax, I've kept my word." To know Miers' heart may be to know her mind as well. Then again, with Bush, who knows?

Sometimes a wink is just a wink.

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 Kathleen Parker can be reached by clicking here.

Kathleen Parker Archives

© 2005, Tribune Media Services