A group of Jews endeavors towards total domination of the blogosphere.
Friday, June 13, 2003
Judaism asserts that everything created by God has a specific purpose in the great scheme of things. Sometimes, though, we are left scratching our heads over some part of the universe or another, wondering what role it can possibly be serving. Take email spam for instance. Why did God create it? Well, now we know. If not for spam, we'd have never seen Chuck Schumer on the 700 club agreeing with Pat Robertson on anything.posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 3:20 PM |
Prof Colin Humphreys of Cambridge University, a frum Baptist, believes that the biblical Mt. Sinai was actually what we now call Mt. Bedr, a volcano somewhere in North-Western Saudi Arabia. Nice rationalization for the moutain shaking and the smoke and fire and whatnot if you don't believe in miracles, and it wouldn't even ruin Rabbi Moshe ben Chaim (henceforth: "Mesora Guy")'s philosophic point.posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 2:44 PM |
Haaretz reports the story of two British backpackers arrested coming into Israel from Jordan and detained and interrogated for the next week and a half. Doesn't look nice. Anyone have any more details?posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 1:37 PM |
Two days ago, a key staffer of Orthodox New York State Assembly Majority Leader Sheldon Silver (who represents the Lower East Side), was arrested for allegedly raping another staffer. Front page of today's Post blames Silver for his handling of the situation, as yet another alleged victim details Silver's response to her allegations:
Former Assembly staffer Elizabeth Crothers - who rocked the state Legislature in 2001 with her rape charges against Silver's chief counsel, J. Michael Boxley - said Silver "sat by" after she came forward, failed to rein in Boxley, and was therefore to blame for the latest alleged attack.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 10:42 AM |
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take your smug self righteousness and shove it..you're just a dickBut what does he really think? Your thoughts? posted by Steven I. Weiss | 10:26 AM |
Making of a Godol file back online. A reader:
The file can be accessed at the following URL:
posted by Steven I. Weiss | 10:22 AM |
Rabbi Avi Weiss' Yeshivat Chovevei Torah has ordained its first Rabbi -- who beat out two YU musmakhim for a pulpit in Englewood. (via the Forward) However, it seems that his appointment (meaning, him over the YU guys) may have had little to do with his knowledge of halakha or his pastoral training:
Evan Sohn, the president of Kesher, said Fox was chosen to lead the synagogue not only because of his extensive torah knowledge, but also for his innovative approaches to interdenominational dialogue. Fox said he was interviewed on the subject of the factious and ongoing eruv case that pitted the Orthodox, who constructed the ritual barrier, against their non-Orthodox neighbors. He has already begun planning programs to mend fences with the non-Orthodox community.I can vouch that we don't get in the way of interdenominational relations here at YU, but I'm not sure how many communities would consider that to be make-or-break. This seems to be something of a niche situation. The article has a good discussion about the stormy YCT-RIETS relationship, and what the Richard Joel era might bring as far as that goes (the article says reconcilliation of sorts. I'm not really sure what that means, but if it means not pressuring shuls/scw to turn away YCT people, then that's something). There's also some speculation that YCT may soon be putting out more pulpit rabbis per year than YU. We'll have to wait and see on that count. posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 9:55 AM |
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The significance of the decision is that the committee no longer regards the content of the Playboy channel as pornography, which is banned from TV broadcasts under the Communications Law. The controversy over the interpretation of the law revolved around the question of whether Playboy was depicting women as sex objects.No word yet on whether they'll lift the ban on Protocols. WE'RE SO HARDCORE!!! posted by Steven I. Weiss | 9:44 AM |
The Broken blog is usually the weaker part of the UnbrokenGlass site. But She's 6/12 entry, a "Dear Alarm Clock," was pretty good. I'm pasting the whole thing here because he doesn't have permalinks (what gives?).
My dear seeing-eye dog alarm clock, I used to jump out of bed and my skin when you went off. How long have we been together, alarm clock? 6 years, clock. 6 years. That means we are common law wife and clock. I think we need to separate. I'm sorry to put this in a Dear Alarm letter, but dammit, I'm sleeping right through you, I forget to set you now, and damn, I turn you off in my sleep. This can't be? After all these years.....posted by Steven I. Weiss | 9:08 AM |
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Thursday, June 12, 2003
I'm finally back, but tired as hell. Great day.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 11:51 PM |
Hasidic Rebel devotes a post to my Richard Joel article, particularly being fascinated by the existence of the breed known as "YU-yeshivish" that either holds from straight daas torah (you need to be a halakhic authority to make non halakhic decisions) or pure halakhic positivism (everything is a halakhic issue, so you need to be a halakhic authority to decide anything - this is also known as Halakhic Man-ism). Well, let me tell you: they're out there. In fact, they're actually most of the beit midrash (we linked a long time ago to a Boston Globe article about the polarization of YU, more yeshivish and more left-wing but I can't find it).
Shmuley Boteach has an interesting perspective on Forces of Good v. Forces of Evil battles (via Jewsweek). From the Christian right, the mood seems to be that the current clash of cultures (foreign and domestic) is the harbinger of the apocalypse, where FOG finally engages FOE and emerges victorious. On the other hand, Boteach believes that the presence of FOG v. FOE fighting is itself a demonstration that we're a long way from an end to history where everything ends up redeemed. Every once in awhile he really does say something that resonates.posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 3:46 PM |
My response to Allison Kaplan Sommers' question as to why we have no Stern bloggers seems woefully inadequate. I'll be off in Lawrence (the second leg of the move I'm helping out with) for the next few hours. Between now & then, let's see if our readers can come up with some good reasons. Attack our new comments utility with a vengeance.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 12:51 PM |
Blogger Ephraim seems skeptical that this letter to Rebbetzin Jungreis was actually written by a 14-year old. Tell the truth, me too. While we're at it, I've had my doubts about the Agunah Chronicles for a long time now...posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 12:05 PM |
Speaking of Rants, here's a classic by Mesora.org's Rabbi Moshe ben Chaim. His basic point:
We can hope for an agreement with the Palestinian terrorists, but is that realistic, or impossible? We must be honest when weighing both sides, accepting only what reason dictates, regardless of our dreams being crushed.No, not really. We're hoping for a deal with the Palestinian leadership, who [we're again hoping] recognize that terrorism is not in their ultimate best interest and make moves to stop it. The equation between "Palestinian" and "Palestinian terrorist" helps him later in the article, when he continues:
In His Torah, God commands man to wipe out a city of idolatry, a people who harm only themselves. We are also commanded by God to wipe out the murderous Amalekites. God Himself destroyed Sodom. He wiped out the world with a flood. In all these cases, children were not spared. Ask yourselves, "Is God right or wrong by condemning children?" There is one answer: God created morality, so it is ludicrous for man to oppose God.And so on. I'm too scared to even consider where this one is going. Apparently God wants us to kill Palestinian children as a pre-emptive action to stop them from growing up to be suicide bombers, but don't worry, its by definition moral since God's will defines morality. Fortunately, he comes off as a moderate by the end and only ends up talking about deporting (all 3 million or so) Palestinians to the neighboring Arab states. Another clear example of the inherent dangers in using Scripture as an ideological weapon. posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 11:56 AM |
READER EPHRAIM IS NOW BLOGGER EPHRAIM! Go there! Link!posted by Steven I. Weiss | 11:50 AM |
Yesterday, I pointed to an Idiotarian post that found Fox News referring to Hamas-types as militants. I saw the same thing in yesterday's WSJ. Weren't these news outlets raging when Reuters changed its policy on this? I don't get it. As I also said yesterday, my Nexis access seems to be unavailable, so if anyone else can find some poignant clips, that'd be clutch.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 11:43 AM |
Allison Kaplan Sommer isn't sure if she's happy with my rant against Sharon yesterday. She was even quite surprised to find Jonathan Edelstein's comment on the post, in which he called it an "Excellent rant." There's more discussion in the comments to her post there.
Israel has never learned how to be a victim. Instead of lashing out immediately from a position of weakness, it should be calling in its friends to help; but it keeps alienating those friends who are actually capable of solving the problem. Sharon continues to think that his occasional bitch-slap to the PA is protecting Jews in Israel, and he is consistently proven wrong. But he's not willing to build up enough victim capital to get some allies to come in and clean up the terrorism. Today's attack was planned for at least the past week, likely more. But in everyone's minds, when thinking about today, yesterday's impotent counter-attack will linger. Because Sharon is an asshole.She asks:
What exactly is "enough victim capital?" Exactly how many of us should be killed before the rest of the world feels sorry enough for us to do something and stamp on Hamas so we don't have to? 50? 100? 2,000? And how would you feel about sitting back and waiting for the next deaths if we were talking about your family, friends and neighbors?As to what is "enough victim capital," I'd say it's when you've proven that the violence is one-sided. It's real simple: an attack on the heart of Jerusalem is a massive affront to Bush's peace plan. He has every reason to be pissed as hell at the terrorist group(s?) that perpetrated the attack. But any response he has to that has to be filtered through Sharon's hit in Gaza. Sharon, with a stupid move of chest-thumping bravado, has lent credibility to the term "cycle of violence." Everyone looks at what Sharon did and sees it as a "They got our guys, let's go get their guys," approach to defense, and they're right, because that was Sharon's attitude.
In the numbers that AKS asks, "50? 100? 2,000?" she's using a model tainted by history. Something that everyone moving towards peace in this conflict has to acknowledge is that history only holds the peaceful mind back. As of the delivery of the Road Map, we were living in a new history; tabula rasa for all sides, all individuals involved. The US, EU, Russia, all put their credibility on the line with this plan. As this AKS/Edelstein exchange goes in the comments there:
AKS: Um, how come Bush wasn't 'embarrassed' by the attacks on Israelis that occured the day after Aqaba? How come he isn't 'embarrassed' by the fact that Abu Mazen and the PA haven't lifted a finger against terror?"This equation makes it so simple, and it really does work. Bush can circle the globe saying "my guy is right; my guy is the victim," if that really is the case. But it's not anymore, because the violence has two sides. No one cares who started it, everyone cares who's perpetuating it.
Sharon claimed he was protecting Israel with his attempt at Rantisi's life; the bombing yesterday proved him absolutely wrong. It's a daring show of machismo on his part to think that he can take out the Palestinian terror network, and he's daring with his own people's lives.
I don't know if you've been paying attention, but since the party at Aqaba there have been TEN, count 'em TEN attempts by suicide bombers to infiltrate and do their job. So I think there's a whole lot more going on by the government and the IDF to protect Jews in Israel than you are giving them credit for.But that only goes to prove my point further: in the regular course of operations by the IDF, it will protect Israelis from attack. Sharon doesn't have to and can't justify that, because the fact of the matter is that he can't really influence it in any way, whatsoever. The IDF is protecting Israelis; Sharon isn't.
And as to "How [I'd] feel about sitting back and waiting for the next deaths," I'm not saying that's what Sharon should be doing. Take a look at what Bush did post 9/11 -- he spent a week gathering intelligence, playing the PR game, assembling his allies, issuing repeated warnings, and ensuring that other people issued them, then going in. Sharon doesn't take that approach because he doesn't think he needs allies -- militarily or otherwise -- to defeat these guys. That's why he's full of it, and that's why he's an asshole for putting his people at risk in this way. Bush played the victim game perfectly, and Sharon absolutely refuses to.
If this bombing had taken place without the Rantisi attack having occurred -- as it most certainly would have, since the terrorist was already on his way -- Bush could use his capital and influence to do something. The PA sponsors would be shamefaced. And Israel could spend a couple of weeks doing the diplomacy necessary to get someone -- not necessarily the IDF, or the IDF alone -- to sweep up the terrorists in the territories. Israel has never had the chance to have the diplomatic upper hand like it did with this Road Map, and Sharon squandered it in incredible fashion.
On to less serious matters. At the end of the post, AKS says:
For the record, I think that these YU boys (they appear to be YU boys) have got a nice blog going at "Protocols." But how about a few female voices? What is this, a Haredi wedding or something? Are none of the girls over at Stern smart enough to participate?1) No, we're not "YU boys," we're "current (and in my case former) YU men". Thanks
2) As to the female voices, well, if any came along, we'd consider their inclusion. As of now, the closest thing we've got is Reader Meredith's occasional comments.
3) "Are none of the girls over at Stern smart enough to participate?" On a normal day, I might not touch that with a ten-foot pole. But I'm feeling frisky and argumentative. The women involved in media at Stern, the Observer editors being the primary example, have impressed me time and again with their incompetence and outright stupidity. There, I said it, and it's not in a Purim issue. On the other hand, I know oodles of current & former Stern women whom I'd love to have blogging with us; they just won't come on board unless I get a shave & a haircut...and, well, that's something I just cannot do.
UPDATE: Reader Ephraim in the comments:
you still called him an ahole for something you assumed he caused. S'like saying the intifada was caused by his visit to the temple mount. Not true, and all the big arabs say so, and theres video speeches to prove it. They resent anyone who says that they werent alreayd planning the uprising and that they needed sharon to take a walk to do it.You're wrong everywhere. First, I didn't call him an "ahole," I called him an asshole. Second, I'm not blaming him for the attack on Jerusalem; I'm blaming him for the fact that the attack on Jerusalem won't garner the sympathy that Israel needed it to.
ANOTHER: Edelstein has a final comment over at AKS, in which he says, "BTW, if Abu Mazen responds to this by taking it as a wake-up call and cracking down on Hamas, I will gladly eat my words." Of course, so would I. But in order for that to happen, Abu Mazen would have to be a stronger leader than Sharon, Bush, or really any national leader in history; It'd be great if that were the case, but nearly impossible. posted by Steven I. Weiss | 11:22 AM |
A YU kid got shot last night at 182nd & Amsterdam. NY1 Story. Reader Ephraim says the kid's name is Jonathan Dipkowsky or Dibkowsky.
Its going to be hard following up one of Protocols' best days ever, both in terms of number of posts and number of hits, but here's trying:
There's some interesting stuff on the web right now about the relationship between halakha and spirituality. First, we have Hasidic Rebel describing his frustration with the extreme amount of attention given to relatively small or optional halakhic details contrasted with the almost total lack of focus on the overrarching themes of kindness, society, spirituality, and, well, God. On the other side, Jewsweek is running an article about Yehuda Berg's Kabbalah Centre (which is listed in Rick Ross' directory of cults), which assumes that Kabbalah predates and transcends religion, so that all there is is meditation and spirituality with no halakha at all. This approach allows Berg to market Kabbalah to non-Jews, as well as (and including) people who cannot even read the Hebew and Aramaic of the Kabbalistic texts themselves (Berg claims that meditating the right things while "scanning" the Aramaic text of the Zohar with your finger generates the right karmas, even if you have no idea how to read the words you're pointing at - see some of the rickross articles for more). Obviously there's a balance somewhere which varies from community to community as well as from individual to individual, but its something worth thinking about. HR's post did generate some comments, which are also worth checking out.posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 12:35 AM |
Wednesday, June 11, 2003
Hilarious. In a tactic taken from the Left, The Jewish Press helps its readers express dissatisfaction with the Road Map by posting a poll that asks: "Do you think economic issues will erode the popularity of George W. Bush?" So far, it seems it's not working: the vote is currently 36% yes, 64% no.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 7:09 PM |
Whoa. Laudatory story about Mormons cleaning up a Jewish cemetery in Queens. Is the Jewish Week unaware of reports that Mormons are baptizing the Jewish dead? I think there was a story about that in their own pages.
OK I work at The Jewish Week and the writer was definitely aware of this Mormon practice; she interviewed the main Mormon who spearheaded the clean-up and he said that no baptizing would be done. Whether he was telling the truth or not is a different question, but the jourmalist decided to write the story and not deal with the issue. After all, this guy provided quite a service to the Jewish community, and she wanted it to be acknowledged.If it's true that the question was asked, then that's a move in the right direction for reporting the story. But the explicit intention of providing applause that Rivka describes does not adequately present a story in the way honest journalism should. And further, the reporter should make additional efforts to verify that it wasn't taking place, such as confirming the fact with a second source, as every reporter is expected to do with every question of fact.
Rivka - I'm assuming the same one - writes in still unsatisfied:
the writer deals with the issue in the piece - and how would she definitively confirm that baptisms are not being conducted secretly? She knew that of course this is possible which is why she did not flat out state they weren't happening. but would you have ignored a story like this? From a human interest perspective it is fascinating.Part by part. Firstly, the writer does deal with the issue in the piece, in these middle paragraphs:
Meanwhile, Shane Wamsley, the Mormon from Utah who spearheaded the recent cleanup effort by his coreligionists, also is vowing to continue his support. Wamsley plans to return to New York for 10 days of cleaning next month.Yes, the author does begin to deal with the issue. However, the story's lead mentions that 300 Mormons had taken part in the effort, and not one of them is quoted -- were they spoken to? Were they acting under the religious instruction -- in adddition to leadership -- of Wamsley, or might they have been open to acting on their own religious prerogatives? How many of them were in B'nai Shalom?
As to Rivka's question regarding confirmation, well, I'd assume those 300 Mormons would be a good place to start; as would any people who are regular employees/visitors of the cemetary. If there was no one the author could think of to ask for confirmation on this -- and, given the 300 who she reports took part, that's highly unlikely -- she should report that in her piece.
Rivka's last quesion/point, of whether I would have ignored the story and that it is fascinating, seems to assume a feeling on my part that's not present. Just because a story is reported poorly doesn't mean it shouldn't be reported at all. It is an interesting story, and should be reported on...just better, that's all. The reporter should have been more thorough; for all we know, she may have only gotten half of the story.
Anyway, it's good to hear that members of the Jewish press' printed page purveyors are taking note of the blogosphere. It's great to have you reading, and even better to have your comments. Thanks for writing in, Rivka. posted by Steven I. Weiss | 6:58 PM |
Rumor has it the new issue of Jewsweek will be up very soon, with articles from both Elder Avraham and myself -- the first time that the planets have aligned in this fashion.
Well, it isn't often that a second-tier official has as much apparent influence as Wolfowitz. Josh is right that Strobe got attention, especially when attacked by Helms & Co. But I think that all died down after his confirmation.Again, hitting on target that Wolfowitz gets a lot more attention than it seems other deputies have. Please write in with your thoughts on the issue. posted by Steven I. Weiss | 5:26 PM |
Jewsweek gets a profile in the AJC, with two decent pictures of Benyamin Cohen. As to why there weren't any pictures of myself...I can only assume it's because they don't want to turn on the ladies that much.
There's no way you could have an office that big in NYC on JW's budget. Heck, if I lived in Atlanta, maybe I'd have a budget, period. I need a budget...feel free to hit the PayPal tip jar if this resonates with any of you. posted by Steven I. Weiss | 5:16 PM |
Our weekly glance at this week's Jewish Press letters section reveals:
Ariel Sharon is an asshole. All over the blogosphere right now, and in every newspaper and at the top of every wire service is the talk of 16 dead (including at least 8 children), 70 or more injured in a bus bombing in Jerusalem. And everywhere, everyone will have to acknowledge that Sharon went beyond the dictates of the Road Map in attempting to whack Rantisi.
Just an out-of-the-blue thought on my summer research: I wonder if anyone at Qumran (the center of the sect that wrote/collected the libarary that we know as the Dead Sea Scrolls) had a sinking suspicion that in 2,000 years Modern Orthodox scholars would be looking back at them as the great weirdos of Jewish History. Come to think of it, probably not.
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Good post by Naomi Chana on the religion of barbecue and the hypocrisy it's engendered.
I'm a city girl, but only one generation removed from the heart of Western barbecue territory; I happen to enjoy both styles, although I lean toward the West. However... there's this other side of my family, see? And they're from a part of the country where it's usually okay for Jews to eat crabcakes (preferably at restaurants, and in my mother's childhood only under assumed Gentile names -- my grandfather refused to call in reservations under his own, very Jewish, surname) but where my aunt's family only found out five years ago, as a result of sharing a beach cottage with us for a week, that "grits" were not a form of breakfast meat. My mother's family has nothing to do with pork, never have, never will, and view it with roughly the same enthusiasm they'd view sautéed grubworm. The fact that a good third of that side of the family, including my Aunt Miriam's household, no longer keeps kosher (except during Passover) is blessedly irrelevant. Some things go beyond mere commandment and into the lower realms of prophetic insight.I sometimes make reservations under an assumed name...but that's to keep the hordes away. posted by Steven I. Weiss | 2:09 PM |
Samuel Freedman for the NYT on Morgan Freeman as a black God.It's a thought-provoking piece. Could this movie have been made 20 years ago? And is Freeman playing God a sign of true black/white equality, or is it like the male version of the "Mother Earth" stereotype? The end of the piece actually presents this as in line with a consistent male stereotype:
The praise for "Bruce Almighty" in black intellectual circles is not unanimous. The cultural critics Gerald Early of Washington University in St. Louis and Linda Williams of the University of California at Berkeley said that Mr. Freeman is carrying on what Ms. Williams, in an e-mail message, called "the same old tradition of the saintly black man who is shown caring for the relatively trivial worries of white protagonists."Also, the fact that Freedman cites TV ministers as positive factors in black Christianity -- that's arguable. Then there's Freedman's failed attempt at bringing in the Bible:
The film is essentially a comic version of the Job story, with Mr. Carrey as a television newsman named Bruce Nolan who grows so depressed and frustrated that he dares God to do something about it. Whereupon God grants Bruce divine powers, which he proceeds to use on himself: sports car, promotion to news anchor, revenge on sundry enemies. Only then, omnipotent but unhappy, does Bruce realize that the purpose of godly power is to dispense mercy and compassion to others.If that were the real story of Job, we'd have a much sunnier perspective on suffering. posted by Steven I. Weiss | 1:53 PM |
Barry Joseph opines about The Matrix and the Road Map in the Forward, not realizing that both are so last week.posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 1:43 PM |
An article yesterday about the dismantling of a rusty tower by an Israeli settlement in the West Bank as a gesture of compliance with the American-led peace initiative misstated the origin of Israeli control of the territory. During the 1967 war, Israel seized the West Bank from Jordan and took Gaza from Egypt, not from the Palestinians.Now, admittedly, if you'd asked me to describe that land transfer off-hand, I would've failed miserably. As the Styx rightly notes, the Palestinians never had land -- that's the whole problem here. The article is by Ian Fisher. Unfortunately, my Nexis access seems to be failing at the moment, so can't do much research on this. posted by Steven I. Weiss | 1:24 PM |
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Just noticed this: it really says something about the Forward's outlook that it publishes its editorials in full on the front page of its website, only linking with headlines to its actual reportage. What's up with that?posted by Steven I. Weiss | 12:58 PM |
Before it gets too old, I'd like to have a discussion of The ADL's report on "The Talmud in Anti-Semitic Polemics". (via Jewschool) Anyone who's read it so far, please chip in in the comments.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 12:46 PM |
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The ADL's got a history of calling into question Israeli criticism. There's actually a logic there, that anti-Israel rhetoric has become the "new anti-Semitism," and thus an organization devoted to stopping anti-Semitism is within its perview to defend Israel against such criticism. There's a certain credibility to that, though it hasn't stopped the ADL from stepping up to criticize decidedly non-anti-Semitic criticisms of Israel.But I think a lot of what the ADL fights against is an association of Jews with a specific political agenda, an allegation that is false. When criticizing Bush on such a specific political matter that carries no broad Jewish-related issues, the ADL would seem to be explicitly contradicting itself. posted by Steven I. Weiss | 12:16 PM |
Vote on Yuter's summer:
posted by Steven I. Weiss | 12:10 PM |
Volokh has an interesting column in the WSJ about the Establishment Clause and what that means for landmarks & religious buildings.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 12:04 PM |
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Head Heeb has thoughts on the Jewish/Arab trip to Auschwitz. There's more to be said here about all these interesting visits to Auschwitz and to Israel by people you wouldn't expect, what it means for popular opinion and how it might affect media coverage.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 11:52 AM |
Adi Neuman's been on a longer blogging break than I took. He hasn't posted since 5/20. Where has he gone?posted by Steven I. Weiss | 11:50 AM |
Call me whatever you want for my opinions. I'm not gonna answer mails from people accusing me of leftist, betrayor or anything else. I made aliah and I am a proud israeli citizen. A proud zionist. I just learnt that in politics here I am not right and I am not left. I am just a zionist.And then gets some really odd comments. Check it out.
posted by Steven I. Weiss | 11:49 AM |
It was somewhat embarrassing to read Daniel Sieradski's post on the complaint about his Jewsweek article that he never sought comment from the UJC about their website before accusing it of censorship. Apparently, the "censored" portion is already back up at the site. This was irresponsible journalism. But even worse is the fact that a blog under his own umbrella had spoken with the UJC earlier and found that it'd be back again soon:
In the meantime, word has it that the powers that be at the UJC deleted a Doug Rushkoff interview from their website. I checked with someone close to the lay leader side of things, and he said that probably one of the ayatollahs had complained and a flunky pulled it. The same thing happened recently with the Eminem story, but then they put it back. Theory is that history will repeat itself and the story will reappear in cyberworld.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 11:29 AM |
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Tuesday, June 10, 2003
New YU-alum blog: YUTopia, by Josh Yuter. It's Yuter-riffic.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 10:34 PM |
Wow, it's been...what, six months? I just realized there's a typo in our motto. For historicity: Prior to this point, the motto read: "A group of Jews endeavor towards total domination of the blogosphere." When, of course, it should've said, "A group of Jews endeavors towards total domination of the blogosphere.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 9:21 PM |
We'd been getting requests from people for how they could chip in to the upkeep of Protocols. There's a button over on the right now, to send over your chints via PayPal.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 8:55 PM |
The guy who hosted the Making of a Godol excerpts on his site has taken the file down. Firstly -- is there anyone else out there who's willing to host it? Another option -- everyone who's on Kazaa who has the file, please place it in your Shared Files folder. Lastly, here's a letter from the host:
Dear All,posted by Steven I. Weiss | 7:33 PM |
Still responding to two-week-old e-mails. Some posts about them are coming.posted by Steven I. Weiss | 7:28 PM |
Patrick Belton quotes a limerick that refers to...?
There once was a number named piposted by Steven I. Weiss | 7:19 PM |
As I slowly return to blogging after my unfortunate hiatus, I'll be posting a lot of old stuff that I didn't have a chance to post earlier. First, check out Avi Zenilman's diary of a trip to Israel in search of prostitutes. The guy is presumably only 18 years old, but doing a damn good job.
As for other deputies who've been the subject of such scrutiny, theThere you have it: Oliver North and Strobe Talbott. Not at all comparable to Wolfowitz. Thoughts? posted by Steven I. Weiss | 7:12 PM |
Mel Gibson is set to sue the ADL for their criticisms of his Jesus docu-drama "The Passion". (via WND) The issue surrounds the role played by the Jews, especially in light of the fact that Gibson belongs to a traditionalist Catholic sect that rejects Vatican II and continues to hold Jews collectively responsible for Jesus' crucifixion. Of course, since the entire movie is going to be spoken in Latin and Aramaic without subtitles, I really don't see what the big deal is. This is hardly going to be The Ten Commandments - I mean, its not like this is going to be on network television every Easter.posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 2:32 PM |
Someone had told me, but I didn't really believe him. It seems to be true, though. Has anyone around YU seen any copies of the last issue of the Commentator? Anywhere? It's not like they all could have been taken by students -- they never are -- and it's not like all the kiosks were cleaned for the summer -- copies of the issue before the last one is are there. Could YU have confiscated another issue?posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 2:17 PM |
Monday, June 09, 2003
Frankly, I don't think that the settlement/outpost dismantlings become news until Sharon removes one that has more than 5 people in it.
Reader Ephraim emails in a Newsday article about the imminent ascension of Richard Joel that features quotes and comments by former Commie editor Zack Streit but doesn't really say (at first glance) anything that different that the stuff that was published when Joel was first named as Dr. Lamm's successor. At second glance, they got the "tehillim story" wrong. According to the article "when the announcement was made six months ago, some members of the rabbinical faculty stopped classes to recite psalms." In fact, the psalms were recited after mincha, when they usually are. No classes were interrupted. A bit of exaggeration on Newsday's part, your opinion on the psalms recitation itself (and the Rabbis that organized it) nothwithstanding. Also, he hadn't been appointed yet. That was the whole point of reciting the psalms in the first place.
One unintentionally funny passage:
"Hillel used to have a reputation as being for dorks," says Zucker, now 29 and assistant director of development for the Hillel Foundation of Stony Brook at Stony Brook University. That reputation kept Zucker away until her senior year, but now she often says, "It's not your father's Hillel."Apparently, there are factions of YU that want to ensure it remains a college for dorks? posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 2:57 PM |
"Proletarios Epanastatis provides a Marxist view of Shavuot." (via HeadHeeb) Very interesting, if not a little off-the-wall.posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 2:51 PM |
Sunday, June 08, 2003
Just in terms of different media spins on the latest attack that killed four Israeli soldiers:
The Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades is the militant wing of Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat's Fatah movementIn other words, the issue remains as it was presented last week by Major Media. Abu Mazen is a relative peacenik, and the only issue is whether he can control the hardliners, both within and outside his government. In contrast, Arutz-7's report refers to "Abu Mazen's Fatah," implying that Abu Mazen himself was in on the attacks, and that, consequently, negotiations with him will prove to be as pointless as they were with Arafat or would be with Hamas itself. This essentially frames a good deal of the debate surrounding the roadmap - will Abu Mazen be different from Arafat, and even if he is, does it matter? posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 4:48 PM |
Check out our new comments link at the bottom of each post (at least when Enetation is up). Hope to hear from you.posted by Voice From The Hinterlands | 12:43 AM |