Hurricane Sandy is a tragic, but profound, refutation of Gov. Romney’s contention that major emergency disaster relief should be moved from the federal government to the states or to the private sector.
I don’t think any of the states seriously affected by Hurricane Sandy have the fiscal reserves or personnel to handle the multi-billion dollar damages they have suffered. Moreover, all of the Super PAC financiers combined would find it most difficult to cover the $50 or $60 billion dollar costs of the combined damages and furnish the necessary expertise and workers.
In light of this we should better understand why Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey seems to have broken ranks with his party’s presidential candidate, Mitt Romney. The states and the private sector can’t do it by themselves and to advocate such is either disingenuousness or naïveté.
With Thanksgiving less than a week away, thoughts turn towards the family meal. Holidays aside, how often do you and your children eat dinner together as a family? After-school, sports and work schedules can make gathering for family meals tough to organize on a regular basis.
But researchers at the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University have identified a significant number of advantages to making time for family dinners. Their studies, released in 2005 after almost a decade of study, show that the more often families eat together, the less likely kids are to smoke, drink, do drugs, get depressed, develop eating disorders and consider suicide.
The study also showed that the kids were more likely to do well in school, delay having sex, eat their vegetables, learn big words and know which fork to use. Seems like we should all work a bit harder to make these family meals happen more often.
When researchers looked at ethnic and racial breakdowns, they found that more than half of Hispanic teens ate with a parent at least six times a week, in contrast to 40 percent of black teens and 39 percent of whites.
Thanksgiving is the family meal on steroids: major food production, major family togetherness. After Thanksgiving, we all should try to make an effort to gather together at the table as a family more often.