Saturday, October 31, 2009

Yemen: End of the Jewish community


Haaretz

About 60 Yemini Jews have been secretly flown in to the United States since July, the Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday, adding that 100 more were scheduled to arrive in the coming months.

Earlier in the year Haaretz reported that the U.S. government was taking part in efforts to extricate Jews in Yemen as result of the physical harassment they had suffered from their Muslim neighbors.[...]

Friday, October 30, 2009

Re-endorsing Caterer who lost certification

1) LASHON HARAH ALERT

Assertions made by any poster - should not be assumed to be true until checked with authoritative rabbis. They are allowed only for the concerns that they raise - so that people can be alterted to investigate so as to avoid harm.

Acceptance of a post is not assurance that it is accurate or in proper context. Even notices said in the name of major rabbis need to be checked out to see that they were actually authorized by those rabbis.


Just received the following letter

Recently, the head of a kashrus supervision agency asked me for marei mekomos for not reendorsing a caterer who lost his kashrus license for deliberately violating policy and halocha.

Below is what I have come up with so far. I would like to find more contemporary applications especially involving hechsheirim. Please let me know if you have anything to add or if you know who might.

Ikar that a yid is more chomer than a goy and svora: SA 118 taz sk 2

Ikar that when caught must be removed and only takanah etc.
SA 119 15-17 vn"k shom

Ikar heter (shoel umeshiv) and that it is to be used with discretion Darkei Teshuva here, 117. Also see earlier DT leading up to that.

Of contemporary teshuvos that mashgiach can't possibly watch someone choshud 24/7 and doesn't help dayan Weiss- shu"t minchas yitzchok chelek 3 siman 95 (talking about shaala with goy but talks about yid....)

Thank you and AGSH

Naomi Remen: "Our stories are all we have"

Turkey is no longer Israel's ally


JPOST Daniel Pipes

"There is no doubt he is our friend," Turkey's prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, says of Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, even as he accuses Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman of threatening to use nuclear weapons against Gaza. These outrageous assertions point to the profound change of orientation by Turkey's government - for six decades the West's closest Muslim ally - since Erdogan's AK party came to power in 2002.

Three events this past month reveal the extent of that change. The first came on October 11 with the news that the Turkish military - a long-time bastion of secularism and advocate of cooperation with Israel - abruptly asked Israeli forces not to participate in the annual "Anatolian Eagle" air force exercise. [...]

Abusive use of religious noise




JPOST

While recent rioting in and around Jerusalem's Old City has left religious tensions between the capital's Muslims and Jews simmering, a new dispute - this time concerning the volume of prayers, more than the prayers themselves - is resonating in outlying neighborhoods.

Jewish residents of these areas, all of which are in close proximity to Arab neighborhoods in the capital's east, have begun to complain that the adhan, or Islamic call to prayer, which is broadcast five times a day from loudspeakers inside local mosques, has become an intolerable nuisance, particularly when it blasts through their neighborhoods at 4 a.m. every day.

"It's as if they took the speakers and put them inside my bedroom," Yehudit Raz, a resident of the northeast Pisgat Ze'ev neighborhood, told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday. "And it's not from one mosque or two mosques - we're talking about tons of speakers going off, one after the other, every morning." [...]

Fears of Modern Orthodox Geirim

An anonymous commentator wrote:

I converted with a MO beis din, well actually two MO dayanim (definitely MO NOT conservadox/traditional/or anything of that nature) and one yeshivish dayan, in a mid-sized, but long established, out of town community twenty years ago. Since that time I married, am raising kah several children, wear a sheitel, and am pretty indistinguishable from the rest of my "middle of the road" slightly to the right of MO community.

I admit that there have been times when I've cringed at some conversions (not by my beis din) which I've seen. That being said, though, I am shaking in my shoes over what is lying in wait for me when my children reach shidduchim.

It seems that geirus has turned into nothing less than a witch hunt in recent years. That long-standing conversions are now going to be under a microscope seems very wrong, and something that is likely to prove a great embarrassment and emotionally traumatic for many totally sincere converts. It frightens me that the chareidi world, which does not accept MO as an acceptable hashkafa, is going to determine MY status and that of my children as well.

Add this to the other items I've seen, such as an opinion that the geirus of somebody could possibly be invalid if a dayan does not believe the universe is less than 6,000 years old, a position which was taken by no less than Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan back at that time and by dozens of those now well known in kiruv, and everybody who was converted by MO must be in great fear now.

Emotionally, it takes its toll - I always felt accepted, warmly accepted, but now it is all too clear how many don't really, at heart, want us. It is so terribly terribly painful. I did my part - I've embraced halacha, I've embraced this people, I've sacrificed to pay tuition for the children, and I have done my best, but it feels like hands are grasping to take it all away. How can Hashem let this happen to us? How is it permissible to oppress many sincere geirim in the name of ferreting out a few doubtful conversions?

Bedatz: Pappenheim & Kraus - rejected

Thursday, October 29, 2009

EJF's aggressive new relationship with kiruv


5 Towns Jewish Times

For 100 Jewish youth from the former Soviet Union, many of them students, Shabbos Bereishis was an opportunity to plant deeper roots in their commitment to Judaism. The occasion was a Shabbaton sponsored by the Russian American Jewish Experience (RAJE) of Gateways and Horizons/Eternal Jewish Family (EJF) at the Stamford Hilton. From the inspirational song and dance at Kabbalas Shabbos led by Rabbi Avrumi Jordan to the moving havdalah by Rabbi Yisroel Cherns, it was an important Shabbos in the lives of the youth.

For RAJE, this was a key event in their ongoing programs for youngsters from the former Soviet Union. Every Sunday nearly 400 youth gather in Brooklyn for several hours of lectures and programming. The change in the youngsters, say the devoted mentors who are part of Gateways, "is nothing less than sensational." For Horizons/EJF this was the next chapter in an aggressive new partnership with kiruv organizations that in addition to Gateways includes Ohr Somayach, Arachim, Lev Le'achim, Hidabroot, and Nefesh Yehudi. Similar seminars have been held in cities throughout Israel, in Baden, Austria and Odessa, Ukraine. It is part of a program to assure that youth build strong Jewish ties, most importantly by marrying Jewish. [...]

RaP: EJF's conflict between kiruv & geirus

Jewish Press: An Emerging Gold Standard For Conversions (Jun 14 2006)

Editorial Board
Posted Jun 14 2006

As reported this week on page 3, Israel's Chief Rabbinate has begun to formalize - through an agreement it entered into with the Rabbinical Council of America - its historic effort to tighten the process of conversions in the U.S. and throughout the world. The Jewish Press has also learned that the chief rabbis - in addition to addressing the immediate issue of RCA conversions - are working with a new organization, the Eternal Jewish Family, to develop and implement what would amount to a Gold Standard for conversions. EJF, funded by the Lillian Kaplan Foundation, is in the midst of a series of conferences around the world with the participation of the chief rabbis and other leading halachic and Torah personalities in an effort to establish standards that will lead to universally accepted conversions...[...]

RaP: EJF as viewed in 2006


RaP: The Jewish Press from June 2006 [posted on this blog in 2007], a full year before this blog started really focusing on the EJF conundrum reveals and conforms a lot including all the "rationalizations" that Roni/Tropper kept on hammering over and over again.

In fact this could be called the standard EJF self-justification script when EJF was openly launched. Obviously at that time already Tropper knew he would have to answer for his new innovations and therefore he carefully laid out the whole script and battle plan. In hindsight, lots of it becomes self-contradictory with all the unknown variables that came flying there way: the Uproar over their excitable partner Rav Nochum Eisenstein's insulting the RCA and YU rabbis at the early EJF convention, the written declarations of Rav Shternbuch and the entire BADATS against EJF, and the final blow the disgraceful and ugly fall-out between Rabbi Tropper & Tom Kaplan with Guma Aguiar.

This makes for interesting reading even now and reveals a lot that is self-explanatory for anyone who has been following these events:

Billionaire claims police brutality

R' Ovadia Yosef: Report dangerous driver

Amnesty demonizes Israel with lies


Haaretz

The blitz continues: After the Human Rights Watch and Goldstone reports (which were only the two most prominent among many, including some homemade ones), Amnesty's rocket, "Troubled Waters," has landed. The gist: Israel is drying out the Palestinians.

Any libel involving discrimination against Palestinians immediately makes headlines and is repeatedly broadcast in Israel more than anywhere, usually without fact-checking and sometimes without even a request for a comment from the authorities. The news editor knows, for example, that there are around 300,000 settlers and not 450,000 (if only there were) - guzzling rogues that they are of the Palestinians' water (some may say the blood). The motive for the Israeli media's extensive coverage of lies that besmirch their country is not very different from the motive of the foreign organizations themselves: undermining Israel's moral standing in its own eyes and those of the world. [...]

JPOST

Israel is under fire yet again for supposed human rights contraventions. Hot on the heels of the Goldstone Report, which at the behest of the UN Human Rights Council charged Israel with war crimes against Gazan civilians in Operation Cast Lead, Amnesty International this week accuses Israel of depriving the Palestinians of the most basic and vital of all commodities - water.

Both reports assail Israel for supposedly robbing Palestinians of fundamental liberties and provisions. This simplistic premise underlies the approaches of the UNHRC, Amnesty and a whole host of similar organizations whose verdicts, as National Infrastructure Minister Uzi Landau noted, "are a foregone conclusion before any fact-finding effort is ever under way."[...]

Rav Sternbuch:Noach & Moshiach

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Rema #7 Slandering for sake of peace

CNN questions Obama's attack on Fox

Baltimore Sun

Cancers can vanish without treatment


NYTIMES

Call it the arrow of cancer. Like the arrow of time, it was supposed to point in one direction. Cancers grew and worsened.

But as a paper in The Journal of the American Medical Association noted last week, data from more than two decades of screening for breast and prostate cancer call that view into question. Besides finding tumors that would be lethal if left untreated, screening appears to be finding many small tumors that would not be a problem if they were left alone, undiscovered by screening. They were destined to stop growing on their own or shrink, or even, at least in the case of some breast cancers, disappear.

“The old view is that cancer is a linear process,” said Dr. Barnett Kramer, associate director for disease prevention at the National Institutes of Health.

“A cell acquired a mutation, and little by little it acquired more and more mutations. Mutations are not supposed to revert spontaneously.”[...]

Abuse: Elior Chen extradited to Israel


JPOST

Elior Chen, the self-styled rabbi who allegedly influenced some of his followers to abuse their children in order to "correct their corrupt souls," was extradited to Israel overnight Tuesday.

Police are expected to request a remand extension on Wednesday morning.

The 29-year-old Beitar Ilit resident fled to Brazil more than a year ago after a terrifying affair of child abuse in a haredi family in Jerusalem was exposed. [...]

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

From Judaism to Islam & back again


JPOST

Sometimes embracing a faith is easier than living with the people who profess that faith.

This was a lesson well-learned by "X," a young woman who was born a Jew, converted to Islam but last week stood before a rabbinical court in Jerusalem and declared her fidelity to Judaism.

Once she had made the decision to embrace Islam, it was easy enough for X to make the shahada: "There is only one God and He is Allah and Muhammad is his messenger."

But it was altogether a different story when it came to living with Muslims. The cultural differences were impossible to bridge. [...]

Monday, October 26, 2009

Goldstone:A critique of self-apotheosis/Rosenberg

this was sent to me by a number of people /See Haaretz for additional analysis

EJF mixes kiruv & geirus - RaP

Rav Moshe Feinstein:Converting Shul into Church

שו"ת אגרות משה אורח חיים חלק א סימן נ

במכירת בית הכנסת כשיצאו היהודים ממקום ההוא והוא ביהכ"נ של כרכים ואם הקונים ישמשו לבית תיפלה י"ב תמוז תשי"ז. מע"כ ידידי הרב הגאון מוהר"ר אליעזר שאהנפעלד שליט"א.

בדבר ביהכ"נ שהוא במקום שהיהודים יצאו משם למקומות אחרים וצריכים לבנות ביהכ"נ אחר במקום שנתיישבו שם יהודים ואין להם הסך הצריך לבנין ביהכ"נ אם לא שימכרו ביהכ"נ זה לנכרים והם ישמשו שם לבית תיפלה שלהם והנכרים הם נוצרים מהכת שמחזיקים את יום השבת ליום קדוש שהם אין עושין צלמים ותמונות אבל עכ"פ מאמינים באותו האיש ומתפללים לו ונמצא שאף בלא הכנסת צלמים ותמונות יעבדו שם ע"ז בתפלתם, אם יש איזה עצה ותקנה שיבא למכירה זו.

והנה תחלה צריך לדון אם אפשר בכלל למכור דאולי נידון כביהכ"נ של כרכים. ויש להתיר למה שכתב המג"א /או"ח/ בסי' קנ"ג ס"ק י"ב דאם אינם מתפללים בו אפילו של כרכים יכולים למוכרו, ומשמע שהוא לכו"ע, והטעם נראה דאף לתוס' מגילה דף כ"ו דאסרי אף שמעלמא לא נתנו כלום לבנינו דמשום שנעשה לדעת אותן רבים חמורה קדושתו מ"מ כיון דודאי היו מסכימים כולם למכירה זו לא עדיף מאילו כל אלו שאירע לפעמים שהתפללו ויתפללו היו מבני העיר ממש שהיו יכולים למוכרה דאין לנו חלוק כמה דיורין יש בעיר, וחומר הקדושה הוא משום שנעשה ליותר אנשים ממה שיש ביושבי העיר ולפי רוב האנשים המתפללין הוא חומר הקדושה כדמשמע /מגילה/ בדף כ"ז ולכן אין יכולין בני העיר המועטין שבשבילם היתה קלה מעט הקדושה לסלק קדושה החמורה, אבל כשידוע שגם כל האנשים שהיו באין לכאן היו מסכימים להמכירה הרי הסכימו כל האנשים שעשו חומר הקדושה והוי זה כדרו כאן ממש שהיתה העיר בכפלי כפלים דיורין מכפי שהן עתה שהיד /שהיה/ הביהכ"נ בקדושה החמורה זו ואולי עוד חמורה יותר מחמת שהיו מתפללין בקביעות כאן שמ"מ היו יכולים למוכרה.

אבל א"כ הוא דוקא כשכבר אין באין לשם עשרה להתפלל דכל זמן שיש שם עשרה להתפלל הרי אפשר שיבואו גם שם מעלמא להתפלל שעדיין הקדושה חמורה ואין לנו ודאי שיסכימו. ולכן רק אחר שיפסיקו מלהתפלל שם יהיה כח ביד מנהלי ביהכ"נ למכור כי לא מצוי כלל שמעלמא יבואו עשרה להתפלל כאן אף כשכבר אין מתפללין אנשי העיר, ואף אם נמצאו יחידים שמתפללים אבל הפסיקו מלהתפלל בצבור מחמת שלא מתקבץ עשרה נמי כבר לא מצוי שמעלמא יבואו לכאן להתפלל ביחידות ולא יחשבו שיצטרפו לעשרה ולא יבואו לביהכ"נ זה. וכן אף אם יש עשרה ויותר שאחרי שביהכ"נ פתוח מתפללין שם אבל אין בכח מתפללין המעטים לכלכל את ההוצאות שיש בביהכ"נ ומחמת זה מוכרחין להסגירו ולא להתפלל בו נמי כיון שעכ"פ יהיה סגור ואין מתפללין בו נמי יהיו רשאין למוכרו כי הוא כודאי הסכימו גם המעלמא למכור שהם הרי אין משתתפין ולא ישתתפו בהוצאת ביהכ"נ.

והנה אם יש משכונא לבאנק /לבנק/ שקורין מארגעדזש על הבית הכנסת פשוט שאף שהוא בדין בית הכנסת של כרכים אין חיוב על אלו המעטים שבכאן לשלם מכיסם להבאנק כדי שלא ימכור את הבית הכנסת, שאין בזה ענין צדקה והשבת אבדה לאלו הרוצים להתפלל דוקא כאן, ומה שעשו אותו למשכונא מתחלה הרי עשו זה קודם שנעשה ביהכ"נ ולא עברו על הא דאמר רבא דאסור למשכן ביכ"נ בדף כ"ו /מגילה/. דאם משכנו אחר שהיה ביהכ"נ שהיה אסור למשכנו באופן שיוכלו להשתמש בו לחול אפשר יש לחייבם לשלם כדי לעקור האיסור שעשו, אבל היה זה רק על אלו שמשכנו בשליחותם ובידיעתם, דאלו שלא ידעו ממה שמשכנו מנהלי בית הכנסת או ידעו ולא הסכימו אין לחייבם שלא עשו איסור דבסתמא לא נעשו המנהלים שלוחיהם לעשות דבר איסור, אבל כיון שנעשה זה קודם שנעשה ביהכ"נ לא נעשה כלל איסור ואין שום חיוב עליהם אף לא על אלו שמשכנו.

וגם מסתברא שלא היה בכח הקהל להקדישו לביהכ"נ באופן שיפקע זכות הבאנק שלכן אף בשעבוד לבד למלוה רשאי המלוה אף אם הוא ישראל למכרו כחולין ממש, דהא אף מהקדש גמור יכול המלוה לגבות מדין שעבוד מדינא בלא פדיון ורק משום דר' אבהו שלא יאמרו הקדש יוצא בלא פדיון בערכין דף כ"ג ולתוס' שם אף ממטלטלין שליכא שעבוד נמי גבי ולא חל ההקדש מדינא עיי"ש. ולומר שקדושת ביהכ"נ שהוא קדושת הגוף לקדושה זו יפקיע השעבוד כמו שמפקיע קדושת הגוף דקרבנות לא מצינו זה ובלא ראיה אין להפקיע זכות המלוה, וא"כ כ"ש שלא נפקע זכות הבאנק שעדיף משעבוד שהוא כאפותיקי, וגם אולי יש להבאנק קנין משכון מדינא דמלכותא שבאופן כזה לא היה מפקיע שעבוד אף קדושת הגוף, עיין בפסחים דף ל"א וברש"י ב"ק דף צ' לענין חמץ שמפקיע כקדושת הגוף שלא היה מפקיע אם נכרי היה קונה משכון, ונמצא לפ"ז שלא חלה כלל קדושת ביהכ"נ על זכות הבאנק ורשאי הבאנק למכרו אף אם היה של ישראל וכ"ש שאין חיוב על אנשי ביהכ"נ למנוע לבאנק של נכרים מלמכור.

ומכיון שלא נפקע זכות הבאנק רשאי הבאנק למוכרו אפילו לארבעה דברים, וכ"ש שאין חיוב על אנשי ביהכ"נ למנעו מזה שאף אם היתה חלה הקדושה אין לחייבם למנוע את הבאנק. אך שאם היתה חלה הקדושה היה מסתבר שהיה אסור לגרום ולסייע בהמכירה להד' דברים אבל מכיון שלא חלה הקדושה לענין זכות הבאנק רשאין גם לסייע בהמכירה כדי שימכרו ביוקר וישארו יותר דמים עבור הקהל.

עכ"פ למעשה יחכו עד שיפסיקו להתפלל שם ומכיון שהמעטים המתפללים שם אין יכולין לכלכל את ההוצאות ואחרים אין מחוייבין לסייען בזה, הרי יפסיקו תיכף, שאז יש גם טעם הראשון שיכולין למכור אף שהוא של כרכים. וגם שבזה שיפסיקו מלהתפלל תפקע הקדושה להרמב"ן שהובא בר"ן מגילה שם ואני בארתי בתשובה אחת שאף אם היתה קדושה ממש כדסובר הר"ן נמי נפקעת הקדושה כשאין צריכין הקהל לא להביהכ"נ זה ולא להדמים לדבר קדושה, ואף שהכא הרי צריכים להדמים לבנות ביהכ"נ אחר ולא נפקעה הקדושה בכדי ולא יוכלו למכור להד' דברים, מ"מ הרי נקלשה הקדושה, שודאי אין לזה רק קדושת דמים, ויש לסמוך יותר על טעם האחרון שאין קדושת בית הכנסת חלה על זכות הבאנק וממילא רשאין אף לסייע בהמכירה שתעשה הבאנק בכח המארגעדזש שלה כדלעיל.

ואם ישיגו הלואה על ערבות איזה אנשים באופן שלא יהיה שום חיוב על הביהכ"נ שיהיה נמצא שאין להקהל שום צורך בהדמים לבנין ביהכ"נ האחר שהרי יש להם מעות בלא שום התחייבות על הקהל, אף שערבותם יהיה מצד שידעו שאחר שימכרו ביהכ"נ יחזירו להם הדמים שערבו, דכיון שיהיה זה בלא חיוב שלא יוכלו לתבוע בדין הוא רק כרוצים הקהל ליתן מתנה עבור ההנאה דהו"ל מינייהו שזהו טעם להתיר גם מטעם הפקעת קדושה למה שבארתי בתשובה אף למכור להד' דברים אף בלא היתר שע"י הבאנק. ויעשו המכירה ע"י הבאנק שיהיו ב' טעמים להיתר אבל אם א"א להשיג זה יש לסמוך על ההיתר מטעם מכירת הבאנק לבד כדכתבתי.

ומה שהקונים לא יכניסו שם צלמים ותמונות, ודאי עדיף מלמכור לאלו שמכניסין, אבל גם זה נחשב דבר מאוס כמו הד' דברים ורק מטעמים שבארתי יכולין למכור וג"כ אין להתיר אלא בשביל צורך הגדול הזה. ידידו,

משה פיינשטיין

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Rav Moshe Feinstein:Converting Church into Shul

שו"ת אגרות משה אורח חיים חלק א סימן מט

בדבר בית תיפלה של עכו"ם שנחרב אם מותר לקנותו לתקנו לביהכ"נ ט' מרחשון תשי"ב. מע"כ ידידי הרב הנכבד מוהר"ר שמעון האנאווער שליט"א.

בדבר בית תיפלה של נוצרים קתולים שנחרב ע"י שרפה זה יותר מכ"ו שנה, ואח"כ תקנו אותה לבית ספר, ולפני ג' שנים נחרב עוד הפעם ונשארו רק הכותלים שהם מלבנים וצריך גם לתקן הכותלים שאין ראוין כמו שהן וכן בנין שהיה סמוך נחרב גם הוא, ולא ניכר שם שום דבר מעניני הע"ז אם יש להתיר לקנותם לעשות מהבנינים בית הכנסת אחרי שיתקנום לזה.

והנה בעצם מה שנהגו בפה אמעריקא /אמריקה/ לעשות מבית תיפלה שלהם לבית הכנסת כאשר ראיתי בהרבה בתי כנסיות והוא מחמת שסומכים על המג"א /או"ח/ בשם הרא"מ בסי' קנ"ד ס"ק י"ז, וכן ראיתי במ"ב שם ס"ק מ"ה שכתב וכמדומה שהעולם נוהגין להקל עיי"ש. אין דעתי נוחה מזה דפשוט שמאוס זה למצוה וכן מבאר שם בבאור הלכה שבאלו שהעמידו שם אליליהם יש לאסור. ולכן אף שלא באתי לאסור את אלו בתי כנסיות שכבר נעשו ע"פ הוראת חכמים, וגם בכלל בדיעבד אין לאסור כדחזינן בלולב שיצא בדיעבד אחר בטול, אלמא דטעם מאיס למצוה הוא רק דין דלכתחלה וא"כ אפשר שאחרי שהוציאו כבר הוצאה גדולה ועשוהו לביהכ"נ נחשב כדיעבד גם להתפלל בו לכתחלה אח"כ, אבל עכ"פ מפי לא תצא היתר לזה. אבל בעובדא זו שכבר נחרב ואף הכותלים הנשארים לא ישארו כמו שהן שצריכים תקון הרבה ויהיה פנים חדשות להבנין יש מקום להתיר. דהא איתא /או"ח/ בסימן י"א סעי' ח' חלוק בין המשתחוה לבהמה שצמרה פסול לציצית למשתחוה לפשתן נטוע שכשר לציצית מטעם שהרי נשתנה. והוא שיטת הרמב"ם מהא דאיפשיטא בעיא דרב"ח לפירושו בע"ז דף מ"ז שהמשתחווה לקמת חטים מותר למנחות עיי"ש במהר"מ ובכ"מ פ"א מציצית הי"א ובמג"א ובבאורי הגר"א שם /או"ח/ בסי' י"א. וא"כ גם הכא יש לדמות שיהיה מותר לעשות ביהכ"נ אחר שישתנה כשיתקנוהו שלא יהיה ניכר כלל מה שנשאר מהבית תיפלה. ואף שיש לחלק דהלבנים שנשארו לא ישתנו הן בעצמן ול"ד לחטים ונעשו קמח שנשתנה כולו ואין אף מקצת שלא נשתנה וכן בפשתן נשתנה כולו מ"מ כיון שמסתבר שהוא רק איסור דרבנן יש לסמוך שגם זה נחשב שינוי ובפרט שהרבה מקילין בכל אופן.

אבל נראה דבעת הבנין עד שישתנה לא יקדישוהו לבית הכנסת אלא לבנין חולין בעלמא ורק אחר שיתקנוהו וישתנה יקדישוהו לביהכ"נ. דהא מוכרח כן בהא דדוקא המשתחוה לחטים מותר הקמח למנחות מצד השינוי אבל המשתחוה לקמח משמע שאסור אף שג"כ ישתנה לרוב המנחות שהקמיצה היא לאחר אפיה, אלא ודאי דכיון שנתקדש למנחה קודם השינוי אסור לכן אף שהבנין יהיה לצורך ביהכ"נ מ"מ לא יזמינוהו ויקדישוהו לביהכ"נ עד אחר התקון שישתנה.

ידידו, משה פיינשטיין

Rav Sternbuch: Making of an Apikores

Rav Sternbuch: Brazilian anusim & mamzerus

Rav Ovadiah Yosef's view on abuse

Saturday, October 24, 2009

NPR Abuse scandal plagues Chasidic Jews in Brooklyn

NPR

Gene therapy success in eye disease


Wall Street Journal

A small but provocative study showed that a form of gene therapy significantly improved the vision of patients left legally blind by a rare genetic eye disease. The benefit was especially striking among children.

Researchers said the findings amount to an important advance toward medicine's ambitious but generally unrealized dream of replacing disease-causing mutant or missing genes with normal DNA to treat and cure debilitating illnesses. [...]

Rav Ovadia Yosef is claimed to approve EJF seminars


[in a press release apparently from EJF itself it is claimed
that Rav Yosef approves of EJF seminars - but no actual
letter was published]



Yeshiva World News

Rabbi Ovadia Yosef yesterday issued a halachic ruling that it is a "great mitzvah to conduct seminars for intermarried couples" interested in building a Jewish home.

Rabbi Yosef was referring to seminars sponsored by the Eternal Jewish Family for intermarried couples that include a non-Jew seeking a halachic conversion and a Jew who agrees to become a baal teshuva. Rav Yosef's ruling is consistent with many p'sakim of previous and contemporary Gedolei Hatorah who say that unlike ordinary geyrus, it is permitted to be "mekarev" such a couple, particularly where the Jew will be atoning for his/her mistake by becoming a baal teshuva. [...]

Obama attacks Fox to stop growing criticism


Wall Street Journal

Blogger Donald Sensing has a fascinating analysis of President Obama's war against Fox News. He describes the effort as "directly out of the Saul Alinsky playbook." Alinsky was the author of "Rules for Radicals," bible of left-wing community organizers. One of his rules, or "power tactics": "Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it." Sensing analyzes how Obama is carrying out this advice: [...]


NYTimes

Late last month, the senior White House adviser David Axelrod and Roger Ailes, chairman and chief executive of Fox News, met in an empty Midtown Manhattan steakhouse before it opened for the day, neutral ground secured for a secret tête-à-tête.

Mr. Ailes, who had reached out to Mr. Axelrod to address rising tensions between the network and the White House, told him that Fox’s reporters were fair, if tough, and should be considered separate from the Fox commentators who were skewering President Obama nightly, according to people briefed on the meeting. Mr. Axelrod said it was the view of the White House that Fox News had blurred the line between news and anti-Obama advocacy.[...]

Friday, October 23, 2009

Falashmura:Never ending Ethiopian immigrantion


Haaretz

The menu in the kitchen at the Falashmura transit camp in Gondar, northern Ethiopia, is written in English, even though none of the camp's residents or kitchen workers speak that language. In any event, says Ori Konforti, the menu is not there for the benefit of the diners. It is for the guests, Jews from around the world whose contributions finance the camp's operations. In his book "Tzionut Hafuh al Hafuh" (Zionism Upended, recently published in Hebrew by the Zionist Library), Konforti writes: "There are no intact tables there, no sink and no running water. Everything seems to the Western visitor derelict and dirty. Clearly it is all designed to generate empathy and contributions."

Konforti, who until last year was the Jewish Agency's representative in Ethiopia, says that American-Jewish groups wish to keep the immigration of the Falashmura going in order to generate more contributions from supporters who want to be involved in tikkun olam ("repairing the world" activities), enhance the bringing together of Jews from around the world and improve their own relations with the black community in the United States. Israel, he says, became entangled in commitments to the Falashmura, a group with an almost infinite potential for immigration, due to pressure by nongovernmental organizations and politicians, especially from the Shas party. [...]

Christian donor will reveal chareidi recipients


Jpost

Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein, chairman of the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, said Thursday that his organization was compiling a list for publication of haredi institutions that receive its donations.

The move comes after Rabbi Yosef Shalom Elyashiv, considered the most respected and influential halachic authority among Ashkenazi haredi Jews, signed a declaration saying that receiving money from Eckstein's organization was "close to idolatry."[...]

Michael Freund starts Chinese immigration

Arutz Sheva

(IsraelNN.com) For the first time, a group of seven descendants of the Jewish community of Kaifeng, China has moved to Israel.The new arrivals, who were brought here by the Shavei Israel organization, arrived at Ben-Gurion airport late Tuesday night. [...]

Billionaire to fight charges in Florida


Haaretz

Guma Aguiar said this week the court deal he had worked out last month to rid himself of two misdemeanor charges was off. The American-Israeli multimillionaire added that with the help of Alan Dershowitz - who is part of his legal team - he would sue the police officers who he says physically abused him after arresting him in June.

In July, Aguiar had pleaded not guilty and threatened to sue the Broward County Sheriff's Office located in southern Florida for the alleged abuse.

On September 17, Aguiar's lawyers entered a "no contest" plea, which means he neither accepts nor denies guilt for the two charges, possession of cannabis and drug paraphernalia. According to the deal, Aguiar has to pay $536 in court costs and attend a three-hour drug abuse education course.[...]

Thursday, October 22, 2009

'Basement rapist' :Mistake of giving a molester a second chance


JPost

A Tel Aviv court on Thursday indicted a 29-year-old Givat Shmuel resident on charges of attempting to sexually assault a minor, kidnapping and false imprisonment. The alleged incident occurred only six months after the suspect was released from prison after serving 10 years on previous child sex crimes convictions.[...]

Justice - Harvard Prof Michael Sandel #4

EJF & Rav Reuven Feinstein (video)

video

Daas Torah - Interview with Prof Lawrence Kaplan


Seforim Blog

Baruch Pelta: I guess my first question has to be if you changed your position since writing your famous essay on Daas Torah [1] and also, has Daas Torah evolved as a conception since then? [...]


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Discussing accusations of rabbinic malpractise


THIS IS TO NOTIFY READERS THAT A LOT OF MISINFORMATION IS CONTAINED IN THESE LETTERS AND THEIR ASSERTIONS SHOULD BE PRESUMED TO BE MISTAKEN UNLESS CONFIRMED BY RELIABLE SOURCES.


FURTHERMORE SINCE THIS IS NOT A BEIS DIN AND THERE ARE NO WITNESSES - AT MOST THE ASSERTIONS MADE IN THE COMMENTS CAN BE REASON FOR FURTHER INVESTIGATION, BUT THEY ARE NOT TO BE BELIEVED TO BE TRUE. FINALLY EVEN IF THE LETTERS AND OTHER PROOF ARE IN FACT VALID DOCUMENTS - THERE IS NO CONTEXT OR PROPER DESCRIPTION OF PRECEDING OR SUBSEQUENT EVENTS IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO COME TO A PROPER UNDERSTANDING OF EVENTS

IN SUM THESE SOURCES ARE UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES TO BE TAKEN AT FACE VALUE AND ARE NOT TO BE BELIEVED WITHOUT DISCUSSION WITH COMPETENT RABBIS.


THE MATERIAL PRESENTED IN THE COMMENTS IS ONLY SO THAT A PERSON SHOULD BE AWARE OF POSSIBLE CONCERNS SO THAT HE CAN PROTECT HIMSELF FROM POSSIBLE HARM - BUT THE MATERIAL BY ITSELF CAN NOT ESTABLISH THE TRUTH OF THE ASSERTIONS.

Pischei Tshuva (O.C. 156): I want to note here that while all the books of mussar are greatly concerned about the sin of lashon harah, I am greatly concerned about the opposite problem. I want to protest about the even greater and more common sin of refraining from speaking negatively when it is necessary to save someone from being harmed. For example if you saw a person waiting in ambush to kill someone or breaking into someone’s house or store at night. Is it conceivable that you would refrain from notifying the intended victim to protect himself from the assailant - because of the prohibition of speaking lashon harah? By not saying anything you commit the unbearable sin of transgressing the prohibition of Vayikra (19:16): Do not speak lashon harah [but] do not stand idly by when the blood of your fellow man is threatened? By not speaking up, you violate the mitzva of returning that which is lost to its owner Devarim (22:2). Now if you can understand the obvious necessity of speaking up in these cases then what is the difference between a robber breaking into someone’s house or store or seeing that his servants are secretly stealing from him or that his partner is deceiving him in their business or that another person is cheating him in commerce or that he is lending money to someone that you know doesn’t repay? How is this different from stopping a proposed marriage to someone you know is a wicked person who would be a horrible husband. Saving a person from these situations is clearly included in the command (Devarim 22:2) to return to the person himself or his money. From where do we get the mistaken idea that in the case of murder, I will speak up but that it is prohibited to say anything in other situations where someone is being harmed? The general principle is that these are matters which depend upon the speakers motivation. If the informant’s intent in relating these matters is entirely to cause harm that is lashon harah. However if his intent is to bring about benefit to the other person and to save him and to protect him – then it is a great mitzva. In my opinion this is the underlying intent of the Yerushalmi which the Magen Avraham brings which says that it is permitted to speak lashon harah about people who cause disputes. … It is obvious that even concerning those who cause disputes it is not permitted to speak lashon harah gratuitously about them in all matters. It is only permitted for those things directly related to the particular dispute. It is only permitted concerning that which they are trying to harm others. In such a case it is permitted to reveal degrading things about them in order to save others. … Unfortunately I have seen many times where someone witnesses another person trying to cause harm to someone – and he suppresses the information and says, “Why should I get involved in a matter which isn’t my business…However one needs to be very careful about these and similar matters. Our Sages have said – when the permissibility depends on motivation - it says, “And you should be afraid of your G‑d.”
Anyone who feels the above is not sufficient justification to read assertions and charges against others - should skip this post.

meinyan leinyan beosso inyan said:

Rav Shraga Feivel Mendlowitz's shita is that such things as corrupt rabbonim being machshil the rabim need to be publicized.

RSFM was a fearless man who took a lot of petch for doing the right thing. Not everyone is necessarily mechuyev to do the same. I could not quote the rabbonim who spoke to me on certain items because they must maintain a low profile unless they want to invite certain dark forces to harass them or worse.

=====================
Chazon Ish(2:133)… My opinion is that it is appropriate to have true knowledge about a talmid chachom who shapes yiddishkeit. If it is permitted to tell someone who needs to know about the bad points of an artisan in regards to his qualifiation for doing a job, then it is surely permitted in regards to conveying information about an influential talmid chachom for those who need to know. That is because knowing about the great scholars of the generation concerning their thoughts and characteristics – is itself considered Torah. [In other words just as one is permitted to convey accurate information about an artisan if there is to'eles so it it permitted to reveal information about a gadol if there is to'eles. Nevertheless it is necessary to be extremely careful not to distort the facts in the slights, because that would lead to slandering a talmid chachom.

This indicates that expressing negative information about others is relevant specifically for those who are considered influential authorities and only concerning isssues that are critical for the listener – in order to understand the degree to rely on them.

Shabbos elevators - Belz doesn't prohibit

Words of Gedolim: Apparent contradictions


Berachos (27b):
It is related that a certain disciple came before R. Joshua and asked him, Is the evening Tefillah compulsory or optional? He replied: It is optional. He then presented himself before Rabban Gamaliel and asked him: Is the evening Tefillah compulsory or optional? He replied: It is compulsory. But, he said, did not R. Joshua tell me that it is optional? He said: Wait till the champions enter the Beth ha-Midrash. When the champions came in, someone rose and inquired, Is the evening Tefillah compulsory or optional? Rabban Gamaliel replied: It is compulsory. Said Rabban Gamaliel to the Sages: Is there anyone who disputes this? R. Joshua replied to him: No. He said to him: Did they not report you to me as saying that it is optional? He then went on: Joshua, stand up and let them testify against you! R. Joshua stood up and said: Were I alive and he [the witness] dead, the living could contradict the dead. But now that he is alive and I am alive, how can the living contradict the living?

Monday, October 19, 2009

Multimillionaire takes plea deal in drug case



South Florida Sun Sentinel

A Fort Lauderdale multimillionaire has quietly taken a plea deal in a misdemeanor drug case after telling Israeli media that Broward sheriff's deputies beat him and made anti-Semitic remarks during his arrest. [...]

Sunday, October 18, 2009

R' Tropper: Charisma from the Torah


Charisma From the Torah

Posted by Rabbi Tropper Posted in torah Posted on 17-10-2009


Question:
I really enjoyed your words and comparative study regarding a topic not often discussed. I want to ask you about Charisma. Again is there any meaning from a Torah perspective to this 'thing' called charisma?

I understand that you were gifted with a tremendous amount of charisma, so I guess you are probably aware of it's spiritual value?
Nosson Velvel A.
Miami Beach, FL


Rabbi Tropper Responds:

Thank you for the generous remark. I do not believe that I possess charisma.

A Torah Jew believes in 'Chayn' or 'Nesias Chayn' which in most cases represents virtue though in of itself is not a virtue. Charisma and its seductive power do not even represent virtue. Charisma and it's power to create social revolutionary change can be extremly dangerous. Hitler, ym'sh had charisma. He used it to become the planet's worst criminal.

Moralists have discounted charisma as 'deplorably superficial'.

Psyhcologists have said that the proverb 'familiarity breeds contempt' has a corollary "foreign breeds charisma".


Rav Reuven Feinstein: Kiruv and mixed couples



I was sent a recent recording of Rav Reuven Feinstein,shlita regarding kiruv and mixed couples. He explicitly says that it is prohibited to advertise and promote seminars to attract mixed couples to come with the hope that they will eventually convert. He says that is only permitted to strengthen those couples that come on their own with a genuine interest to learn more about Judaism and without an awareness that mixed marriages are prohibited. Only such couples who are interested lshem shamayim are to be converted while those who know that intermarriage is wrong are to be rejected. He says it is not only his view but it is one Rav Eliashiv, shlita, expressed when they asked him what was permitted. Rav Reuven's view is the one I have long defended as normative against R' Tropper and his representative Roni - while they defended the view which Rav Reuven explicity rejects on this recording. Below is an example of EJF's advertisement for attracting mixed couples to a seminar - exactly that which Rav Reuven says on this recording is clearly prohibited.

Hidabroot Org BNRImgDetail ASP Qs3czfsi

Eternal Jewish Family - funding


The following is information freely and readily obtainable on the internet. It was sent to me by an interested party.



Lillian Kaplan 2007-134077539-048af66a-9-2
Lillian Kaplan 2007-300127083-047134f5-F-1

Roni is having a breakdown


Despite my banning Roni, he is still compulsively sending me emails about how I am promoting intermarriage and phony conversons and am really a secret agent for all the people he has been condemning for the last year. He has even complained again to Rav Sternbuch about what an evil person I am.

Roni - I think it is best for your mental health to take a long vacation - maybe in your local mental hospital.

wishing you a refuah shleima

Eternal Jewish Family's Application Form


Application Form - EJF

Friday, October 16, 2009

R' Tropper/Roni's farewell slurs


What follows is Roni's reaction to being banned. He shows his characteristic "careful reasoning and moderation of expression" that expresses very well the reason he is banned. Unfortunately Roni/R' Tropper think that this abusive language and bullying is the way to deal with those who disagree with their position. It also indicates a paranoid psychopathology which should be worrisome to those rabbis and rosh yeshiva who think they can form an alliance with EJF for their personal benefits - and yet avoid getting burned.


Roni wrote:
eidensohn,

publish or not, you are the same old rosho merusho,
YOU SUPPORT NISSUEY TAAROVOT! YOU SUPPORT GUMA... IN YOUR
COMMENTS UNDER DIFFERENT NAMES ....YOU SUPPORT THE SHEGETZ PEREH ODOM ...YOU
ARE SHEGETZ ...DO NOT LIE AND SAY YOU ARE A "MODERATE"; YOU ARE NOT...YOU ARE
A TROPPER HATER AND JAMIE AGUIAR LOVER...PUBLISH IT OR NOT...I COULD NOT CARE
LESS YOU ARE A SHEGETZ ....STOP PRETENDING THAT YOU ARE WORRIED ABOUT
"PROSETYIZNG" WHOSE ONLY CONCERN IS THAT IT MIGHT RESULT IN
INTERMARRIAGE...HERE YOU ARE SUPPORTING INTERMARRIAGE PUBLICLY OF ...


R' Tropper's universal conversion - "Do it my way"


Had an interesting chat with a well known talmid chachom. His complaint - Eternal Jewish Family

He said he had a conversation with one of the main machers of EJF R' E. who explained to him what universal standards means

"We found out about a convert with a couple of kids who had forgotten to take out her contact lenses. Since this is a chatzitza the tevila was not kosher and she and her children are not Jewish." The talmid chachom replied, "But Rav Moshe Feinstein and Rav Wosner both say that contact lenses are not a chatziza so she is a valid convert." R' NE - "where do they say that I never heard of this before. Besides Rav Eliashiv says it is a chatzitza." Talmid chachom, "The fact that Rav Eliashiv is machmir - doesn't mean that she is not a kosher convert, he is machmir on many things. You don't posul a convert because of Rav Eliashiv's view if there are other gedolim who disagree." [See Rabbi Tropper's Blog 1 & 2]

I asked him about R' Bomzer, "He is a fine yid. Do you know that there was once a rebellion in his shul and Rav Moshe wrote a letter defending him."

He had other things to say but they are not for publication.
שו"ת אגרות משה יורה דעה חלק א סימן קד

בענין עין תותב מזכוכית אם חוצץ, ובדבר המשקפים שנעשו מחדש שקורין קאנטאקט /עדשות מגע/ שמשימים מתוך להעפעפים אם חוצצין. ה' מנ"א תשי"ט. מע"כ ידידי הרה"ג מוהר"ר אפרים גרינבלאט שליט"א.

הנה בדבר עין תותב מזכוכית שעשו לאשה שאין לה עין שיראה כשיש לה עין לנוי אם חוצץ או לא, שהבאת משו"ת שואל ומשיב שני טעמים להיתר אחד שאינו מהודק ועדיין הוא ראוי לביאת מים, ואם הוא אמת ודאי הוא טעם ברור להתיר. וטעם שני מפני שהוא לנוי ואינה מקפדת ואף שצריכה להסירו כדי שלא יתקלקל הוה זה כעומד ע"מ לכתף, ואף שצער לה מ"מ כל שהוא לנוי מקבלת הצער כדי שלא תתבזה ולא מקפדת. הנה ס' שואל ומשיב אין אצלי וטעם שני שהעתקת לא נראה כלל דאף שמקבלת הצער ונוח לה לסבול בשביל הנוי, הרי ודאי במקום שאין צורך לה בהנוי כגון בלילה ואף ביום כשהיא לעצמה בביתה מסירה בשביל שלא תצטער שלא לצורך ולזה יש דין מקפיד לעולם אף בשעה שרוצה לסבול בשביל הנוי. דהא אף בשביל הקפידא דלישה שהוא רק פעם אחת לזמן גדול ואין הקפידא כ"כ גדולה בשביל זה נמי חוצץ אף בשעת הנוי כהא דטבעות בסימן קצ"ח סעיף כ"ג עיין בט"ז שם ס"ק כ"ג בשם הראב"ד, וכ"ש בכאן שמסירה מפני הצער שהוא בכל יום והקפידא היא גדולה.

וגם יש לדון מהא דרטיה שעל המכה שחוצצת, שאף שעתה בשביל המכה אינה מקפדת, כיון שבלא המכה היתה מקפדת נחשב מקפיד שחוצץ. וא"כ גם בכאן בשלמא אם לא היתה מצטערת אין להחשיב מקפיד, משום דאחרי שכבר אין לה עין הרי אצלה הוא דבר נוי ואין לדון עליה כעל שאר נשים, אבל במצטערת אף באופן שלא תסיר כלל נמי כיון דבעצם היתה מקפדת בשביל הצער רק שמוכרחת שלא להקפיד הוא ממש כרטיה שג"כ אינה מקפדת אבל כיון שבעצם היתה מקפדת רק שמוכרחת שלא להקפיד נחשב מקפיד.

והנה אף באינה מצטערת אף כשיהיה שם תמיד אבל צריכה להסירו כדי שלא יתקלקל ולתקנו או להחליפו באחר נמי יש בזה לדון הרבה. ומש"כ בס' שו"מ דהוא כעומד ע"מ לכתף וכוונתו לדמות להא דלא נחשב הנחה בעמידתו לכתף לענין חיוב שבת בשבת דף ה' לא מובן הדמיון והשייכות לשם. דהנחה לחשיבות המלאכה היא להשאיר כאן החפץ אפילו שהוא רק לרגע, ושלא לצורך הולכת החפץ כמו בעומד לפוש שעל הזמן שרוצה לפוש הרי משאיר כאן החפץ שטעון אבל בעומד לכתף הרי עמידתו הוא אדרבה שלא להשאירו אף לרגע דהוא כדי שלא יפול החפץ ולא ישאר שם. ומתוס' שבת דף ח' ד"ה לא משמע דהוא מטעם דכן הוא דרך הולכת חפצים כבדים ולכן לא שייך להתחשב להנחה שהוא ההיפוך ממה שעושה. אבל הכא אין שייכות לשני הטעמים דכיון דאינה יכולה להניחו שם לעולם בשביל הקלקול איך יתחשב אינה מקפדת, וכ"ש כשיש לחוש לקלקול הגוף כשישאר שם תמיד שודאי נחשב מקפיד.

אבל אם הגוף לא יתקלקל אף כשיעמוד שם תמיד אלא שיצטרך לתקנו כשהוא יתקלקל, תלוי זה בטעם מעלת אינו מקפיד דאם הוא מחמת שנבטל להגוף כשאינו מקפיד יש לו לחצוץ דהרי אינו יכול לבטלו להגוף כיון שיהיה מוכרח עכ"פ להסירו. ואם הוא משום דנבטל אותו המקום שאינו מקפיד עליו שיהיה בחציצה מלהתחשב מקום גלוי אינו חוצץ, אין לו לחצוץ מאחר דאף כשמסיר אינו משום דרוצה שיהיה המקום גלוי אלא כדי לחזור ולסותמו במתוקן ובאחר שיותר עדיף לסתום ודבר זה צריך לראיות. ובארתי באורך בתשובה לאחי הגאון ר' מרדכי הגאב"ד שקלאוו זצ"ל בדבר הפילינגס /הסתימות/ בשנים באורך ומסקנתי שם להתיר אף בפילינג זמני אם השן כבר נרפא לגמרי שמה שתחליף הוא לא משום שרצונה שיהיה לפעמים גלוי אלא כדי לסותמו בפילינג יותר חזק, וכן הוא בעין תותב שאם תצטרך להסירו משום צער גופה או משום שע"י סתימה זמן רב יש לחוש לקלקול בגוף שא"כ רצונה שיהיה גלוי לפעמים יחצוץ ואם אין לה צער ואין לחוש לקלקול הגוף אלא שהעין יתקלקל ותצטרך להחליפו בחדש או לתקנו שיהיה טוב לסתום ביותר לא יחצוץ.

אבל הנה בארתי בתשובה אחת בענין מוך באזן לידידי הגאון ר' שמעון טרעבניק שליט"א דבר חדש בחציצה דבית הסתרים, שאינו חוצץ שם אלא חציצה מדברים המתדבקים כמיני דבק וטיט וכדומה שהמקום נעשה מזה אינו ראוי לביאת מים אבל דברים שאין מתדבקין רק מחמת שמונחים שם אין מניחין להכנס שם מים אין חוצצים בביה"ס שא"צ שיבואו שם מים והוכחתי זה מכמה דברים שנתיישבו בזה (והוא נדפס לעיל בסימן צ"ח) ונמצא לפ"ז גם בהא דעין תותב אף אם מהודק יפה ואף במקפדת להסירו לפעמים מצד צערה וחשש קלקול הגוף נמי לא יחצוץ כיון דחציצה כזו אינו חוצץ בבית הסתרים ותוך העין הוא ביה"ס.

ולטעם זה נראה דהמשקפים שנעשו מחדש שקורין קאנטקט שמשימים מתוך להעפעפים ומקיפין את כל העין שהוא מקום בית הסתרים שג"כ כיון שלא נתדבקו שם בדבק שאינם חוצצים ואם שכחה להסירם א"צ טבילה אחרת ורק לכתחלה כיון שיכולה להסירם בעצמה צריכה להסירם משום מהיות טוב. ובזה לא שייכי טעמי השואל ומשיב. והנני ידידו, משה פיינשטיין.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Turkey:"Just criticising Israeli war criminals"

Haaretz

Children of abusive mother ask for leniency in sentencing


YNet

Jerusalem District Court debates sentencing of Beit Shemesh woman convicted of abusing six of her 12 children. Eleven of them appear in court, say abuse was result of mental illness, ask for leniency

Obama, Big Pharma, & you (mimus you)


Newsweek

So it looks as though we are going to get a health-care-reform bill. Now the question is whether it will be reform, or "reform": whether it will improve the way we care for people in this country or, for the most part, be a taxpayer-funded boon to the warped and wasteful industry we already know. Call me naive or cynical—or both—but I can't quite get my mind around the notion that the way to bring "change we can believe in" is to cut an upfront deal with Billy Tauzin.  (Click here to follow Howard Fineman).

Nothing against Billy, of course. At 66, Wilbert Joseph "Billy" Tauzin II is what he is: a Louisiana politician and former congressman with the Bayou-bred knack for cloaking brainpower and bare-knuckle tactics in bonhomie; a masterful mixologist of power and money; and, since 2005, the president of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, which he joined (for a reported $2.5 million a year) shortly after playing the key congressional role in enacting a Medicare prescription-drug plan that is a bonanza for the industry he now (officially) serves.

Barack Obama ran on the claim that he would be the new sheriff in town, that he and his posse of fresh-faced Rhodes Scholars would tame the capital's ruling class. But the first thing that he and his tacticians, Rahm Emanuel and Jim Messina, did on health care was to strike a bargain with Tauzin. Big Pharma, it was agreed last June, would kick in $80 billion over 10 years to help shrink the "donut hole" in seniors' Medicare prescription-drug coverage and would spend $150 million on a pro-reform ad campaign. In exchange, the White House would oppose congressional attempts to extract more, and would specifically fight two common-sense, long-overdue reforms that Big Pharma fears most: allowing imports of cheaper drugs and empowering Medicare to negotiate directly with the industryto keep prices down, as the VA long has done. The administration has similar understandings with other stakeholders, such as the hospital and doctors' groups—and still hopes to engineer one with the health insurers. [...[

Ebay offers honeycake from Skverrer Rebbe

Sex offenders barred from places of Worship


Time

North Carolina is a proud member of the so-called Bible Belt of states that take their religion seriously. So some eyebrows were raised when James Nichols was arrested for attending church.

His offense? Nichols, a convicted sex offender, had chosen to worship at a church that has a nursery where kids play while their parents pray. Now Nichols, 31, who only recently got out of prison, is fighting back, challenging the legality of a new law that took effect in December prohibiting registered sex offenders from coming within 300 ft. — nearly a football field's length — of any facility devoted to the use, care or supervision of minors. (See pictures of John 3:16 in pop culture.)

As more states have adopted laws regulating where sex offenders can go, it was only a matter of time before the noble goal of protecting children butted heads with the sacrosanct First Amendment right to worship where and when you choose. Which takes precedence? [...]

Change in the Arab Middle-East


CNN

The Arab Middle East teaches minorities some tough life lessons and shapes them in ways that might surprise you. While the effect of a conservative patriarchal society is expected to keep people under the thumb of tradition, culture and tribal and religious beliefs — sometimes too much oppression and control yields opposite results.

Having lived in several parts of the Middle East as a child, I learned that a woman doesn't exist except as someone's daughter, sister, wife or mother. Her opinion is not required, her emotions don't count and she has no rights whatsoever – except those granted to her by a male.

With a few recent exceptions, an Arab woman's testimony is not accepted in court. Most Arab women can't travel outside their countries without permission from a male guardian, and most Arab women still can't give nationality to their children. In Saudi Arabia women are not even allowed to drive cars. A popular Arabic saying describes it best: a good woman "has a mouth that eats but not one that speaks." [...]

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Gra: Torah comes from the poor - not the rich


כתר ראש אורחות חיים


סח] הזהרו בבני עניים שמהם תצא תורה' [נדרים פא.], והיינו שבני עניים מקבלים פעולה בהישיבה יותר מבני העשירים, מפני שאבותיהם לא הרבו עליהם בהוצאות שכר למוד ונשאר אצלם הכל בכח ובהישיבה מוציאים מכח אל הפועל, ולא כן בני חעשירים. שכבר הוציאו עליהם למלמדים מופלגים כו׳ כל מה שהיה בכוחם הוציאו אל הפועל, ומזה תקיש לשאר אופניםל פ ):

לט)להתחבר עם עניים והמתנהגים בשפלות, ולישב עמהם בכדי שיסתפק במה שימצא את עצמו (באור רבינו משלי ט״ז ייט) < וכמו מעשה דר״ע שמצא הצשיר יושב בין הנגניים.