Sunday, August 9th, 2009
Isn’t there something off key in the reaction of a growing number of Jewish leaders to talk show host Rush Limbaugh’s latest outrage? Limbaugh, who has built a stellar career out of carefully orchestrated rage, apparently crossed a line when he likened Democratic health care reform advocates to Nazis and said President Obama has “a health care logo that’s right out of Adolf Hitler’s playbook.”
Say what? Do people actually believe this stuff?
Friday, July 31st, 2009
The Wall Street Journal ran this headline yesterday: “Gov. Schwarzenegger’s Approval Rating Hits Record Low.” Californians, it turns out, aren’t happy with his role in a budget crisis that brought the state to the brink of bankruptcy and will now produce record cuts to an an already-pared back education system and benefits to the poor, the elderly and the sick.
Tuesday, June 30th, 2009
Eight months after Minnesota voters went to the polls, the state is about to get a new senator. And it’s not the old one – Norm Coleman, the Republican whose last appeal of the razor-thin election was rejected by the Minnesota Supreme Court on Tuesday in a unanimous decision.
A lower court ruled that Democrat Al Franken, the former Saturday Night Live comic, won the election by 312 votes, but Coleman continued to argue that an additional 4000 absentee ballots should be counted.
I often think I should have jumped into the lake after him.
My son was 12 years old at the time, leaning a bit too far out when he cast his fishing rod. Maybe he did it on purpose.
When Zachary hit the lake he was only a foot from the boat dock, in water barely over his head, and easily within reach for me to pull him back up. There was no current, and with his swimming skills, he probably could have chosen to do a few laps to the floating dock and back, fully clothed, before he climbed out of the water.
People who once quietly murmured about the tuition crisis are now shouting. Many who once casually flirted with the idea of putting their children in public school are filling out the paperwork.
In the best economic times it was difficult for Jewish families to find $30,000-$40,000 to educate their kids Jewishly full-time. Now it’s become the Herculean task that some are staring to see as Sisyphean.
Thursday, April 30th, 2009
It’s been a good week for Jewish groups active on the domestic front.
On Wednesday the House passed by a 249-175 vote a hate crimes bill Jewish groups have had as a legislative priority for more than a decade. For the past eight years former President Bush promised to veto it, but the strong Democratic majorities in both Houses and a new president who supports the measure have dramatically improved its chances, and backers are moving quickly to take advantage of the altered political landscape.
Wednesday, April 29th, 2009
Here’s a stunner: Jewish Democrats think President Barack Obama has done a great job during his first 100 days in office and Jewish Republicans disagree. Some Jews on the left say the new administration has become too centrist for their liking, but centrist Jewish groups that focus heavily on domestic matters couldn’t be happier.
Tuesday, April 21st, 2009
James Besser in Washington
With its annual policy conference approaching, the last thing AIPAC, the pro-Israel lobby, needed was a lot of new publicity about the Espionage Act case involving two former employees.
Well, that’s what it’s getting, thanks to a controversial and bizarre story in CQ Politics – a publication of the respected Congressional Quarterly.
Thursday, March 19th, 2009
James Besser in Washington
Jewish groups are pretty much united on wanting more government spending for critical health and social service programs as part of the federal budget for the next fiscal year.
But as Congress began chewing on next year’s budget proposal, a letter signed by more than 100 local and national organizations, organized by the Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA), was conspicuous in the lack of any Orthodox support.