Friday, June 4, 2010

Tom Kaplan - Billionaire backer of Eternal Jewish Family


Wall Street Journal

Gold is setting records again, boosting the holdings of central banks, Armageddon worrywarts, and ordinary people who own gold bars, coins and jewelry.

But few individuals stand to benefit as much as low-profile billionaire Thomas Kaplan. A New York-born commodities magnate who earned a doctorate in British colonial history at Oxford, Mr. Kaplan oversees an empire devoted largely to gold.[...] Mr. Kaplan is also president of the board of directors at New York's 92nd Street Y, a prominent cultural organization that is a magnet for New York's elite. And he is a benefactor of Eternal Jewish Family, a group dedicated to uniform rules governing conversions to Judaism whose leader resigned last year amid an alleged sex scandal. [...]

15 comments :

  1. R' Doniel, Can u ask Rav Shternbuch the question that is troubling everyone in lakewood with the election less than 1 week away? That is, is one ALLOWED to vote for or endorse a shonoh u'pirish who left his jewish wife for his catholic secretary and now attends tiflah with her. in light of the fact hat a frum yid is running against him? please post the answer on the blog of forward to Harold (hershel) Herskowitz's website.

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  2. Recipients and PublicityJune 6, 2010 at 9:47 AM

    "Tom Kaplan - Billionaire backer of Eternal Jewish Family" from the Wall Street Journal...that requires a paid subscription to read the rest of the article.

    So, please, could someone who has access to the full article either post more of it or just tell if the article mentions EJF in any way and if Tom Kaplan can still be considered to be the active and ongoing "tbacker" of EJF.

    In all probability, it would be very logical and rational to assume that Tom Kaplan, upon the advice of his advisers, has cut his losses in light of the EJF/Troppergate sex scandal fiasco that forced Rabbi and Mrs. Tropper to give up their roles as the reigning tin-pot "monarchs" of kol yaakov yeshiva, EJF, and as self-proclaimed Monsey power-brokers, so hat Tom Kaplan's now far happier being the lay head of the tony 92nd Street Y in Manhattan, and that he's counting his blessings that he was not caught with his pants down bedding down with the Rabbi and Mrs. Leibel Tropper and with his warring nephew still seemingly not well and hospitalized in Israel and also not heard from in months.

    But logic and reason have not always prevailed and their could still be something brewing beneath the surface.

    So barring any major renewed EJF drives to run conferences and support batei din with much fanfare and hoopla, it should be reasonable to assume that it's all over between Tom Kaplan and the EJF crowd bar the official announcement, which maybe is what the total blackout of any shred of mention of EJF and Tropper in any mainstream Haredi and Orthodox media in American, such as The Jewish Press, the Hamodiah that used to accept huge paid advertizing from EJF and in the case of The Jewish Press was a full partner, while the Yated would run occasional more sanitized notices in fine print about EJF goings on and "resolutions" in the names of this and that gedolim.

    So there needs to be some real clarification otherwise it can be assumed that Tom Kaplan no longer backs and pumps money into the sunken EJF pipeline and that EJF is as dead as Tropper's reputation.

    By the way, when is Tropper due to leave his habitat in Monsey? What is the status of the din Torah against all the other rabbis who are trying to succeed Tropper brought by Mrs. Tress, the widow of the original founder and owner of the kol yaakov yeshiva that Tropper took over after Rabbi tress's death? What's the status of the various legal cases and fights in secular courts between the anti-Tropper and pro-Tropper rabbis?

    The silence about all this is deafening!

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  3. personally, I cannot recall a single ad in Yated for EJF, can above commenter giva an example?

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  4. the Monsey TzadikJune 7, 2010 at 9:33 AM

    According to the article Mr Kaplan is still involved with EJF !

    Mr. Kaplan is also president of the board of directors at New York's 92nd Street Y, a prominent cultural organization that is a magnet for New York's elite. And he is a benefactor of Eternal Jewish Family, a group dedicated to uniform rules governing conversions to Judaism whose leader resigned last year amid an alleged sex scandal


    If you put the first few sentences into Google you can get the full article (unless Mr. Murdoch blocked it).

    Kaplan and menuval Tropper are laying low for now and like Freddy Kruger and Jason are waiting for their turn to come back. Meanwhile rabbis try to clean up the mess they created.

    Tropper is plotting his comeback, and I can promise you he will return, but next time more people will be ready.

    It is pathetic to see all the rabbis who ate from their hand now trying to make believe that nothing happened, some of those rabbis still believe that Tropper is innocent.

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  5. thanks for posting this peice I needed my jolt of EJF,Tropper,Kaplan scandal

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  6. All kinds of funny stuff going on with Kol Yaakov. A separate dispute between some members of the board against rabbi tropper. The appointment of Rabbi Winer, a very respected Monsey Rov as director of EJF. Otherwise EJF is acting as if their budget has been cut to next to nothing. Tropper lies low, some question as to whether Rabbi Stefansky will continue with Kol Yaakov. And the Tress claims are marginal, since Shmuel Boruch is the only one asking for money and he only wants it for himself. And incidentally Rabbi Tropper started Kol Yaakov with Hatzaddik Rav Avrohom gershon Tress, but Tropper was there from day one and so Mrs. Tress will never expect to push him out. She knows the scoop.

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  7. As soon as Tropper returns with money in his hands he will find rabbis who will support him.

    On another note, all those people who got money from the EJF , how are they are managing now when the money flow stopped ? (did it really?) do they manage ? do they need some gemach ? Did the RCA got over their shell shock ? do they breath better ?

    What Roni is doing these days ? did he go and ask mechila from Rabbi Bomzer for haraasing him all these years ?

    Actually in some circles, Tropper is a sort of cult hero for being able to convince his wife to join a threeway.

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  8. Someone calling herself Haredi Slayer claims on Failed Messiah that Tropper was diverting millions of dollars from Horizons.edu (college accredited by the Association of Advanced Rabbinical and Talmudic Schools) to Kol Yaakov and she wants the Department of Justice to look into it.

    That could put ALL the yeshivas into scrutiny by the government.

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  9. Recipients and PublicityJune 8, 2010 at 7:04 AM

    "Anonymous said...personally, I cannot recall a single ad in Yated for EJF, can above commenter giva an example?"

    If you read carefully what was written above: "while the Yated would run occasional more sanitized notices in fine print about EJF goings on and "resolutions" in the names of this and that gedolim" -- NOT "ads" per se but they ran "news items" and news releases from EJF and LUBICOM, the EJF PR guns for hire in their "news columns" a number of times over the years. The Yated is not innocent from foisting the Tropper/EJF fraud on the Haredi public and helping to sanitize, hide and cover up the EJF's stench with its perfumed fake verbiage.

    "Monsey Tzadik said...According to the article Mr Kaplan is still involved with EJF ! Mr. Kaplan is also president of the board of directors at New York's 92nd Street Y, a prominent cultural organization that is a magnet for New York's elite. And he is a benefactor of Eternal Jewish Family, a group dedicated to uniform rules governing conversions to Judaism whose leader resigned last year amid an alleged sex scandal.

    This is very fascinating because now the well-documented and proven sexcapades of Rabbi Leib & Mrs Liba Tropper was investigated in the media and by rabbonim in Monsey led by Rabbi Ribiat and established in batei din (Tropper was forced to resign and to quit Monsey, no small result of mere "allegations") and everything was attested to by Shannon Orand herself in front of beit din in Israel, and some of Tropper's various incriminating sexual perversions etc are still available online on video and voice recordings of Tropper doing and concluding all sorts of perversionary sex acts, shall we say, outside the confines of normative halachic marriage (not just that, Tropper is still actually married to his 1st wife Leah Margolin and got hitched the 2nd time to Liba/Luarel Blond based on a still highly suspect and questionable "heter meah rabbonim" with many suspicious signatures probably forged -- forging is a TRopper speciality), and here this snippet states that it is an "alleged sex scandal" when it's a proven sex scandal and that's why he resigned.

    It is weird in-your-face "I can do as I please" by Tom Kaplan when such an article is allowed to mention in the venerable WSJ that "he is a benefactor of Eternal Jewish Family" when it's not clear at all if he still gives money to EJF or this is just noting a past passing interest. Time will tell.

    "Watcher said...And incidentally Rabbi Tropper started Kol Yaakov with Hatzaddik Rav Avrohom gershon Tress, but Tropper was there from day one and so Mrs. Tress will never expect to push him out. She knows the scoop."

    Now this is utter falsehood because almost everyone who really knows the story of KOl Yaakov's founding knows that Tropper was HIRED by Tress AFTER Tress already set up Kol Yaakov but then the shoving and jockeying started since Tropper can't stop for a moment and has to be the top banana and tragically Rabbi tress died, who knows if it wasn't from the stress that Tropper was giving to Tress. Seems that Watcher may be a Tropper plant the way he talks about the widow of the honorable Rabbi Tress as if she is a nothing. She knows what she is doing and wouldn't launch a din Torah just to settle scores. She has a valid claim based on her husbands first and so far only known single founder of Kol Yaakov that then got hijacked by Tropper for his own nefarious ends.

    Time will definitely tell, it's scarily too quiet right now.

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  10. After Rabbi Tress died, tropper tried to get the widow's house signed over to him. It seems that the house was in the Yeshiva's name, and was fair game to tropper. The outrage in the community stopped him.

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  11. " proven sexcapades of Rabbi Leib & Mrs Liba Tropper was investigated in the media and by rabbonim in Monsey led by Rabbi Ribiat and established in batei din "
    To Recipients and publicity:

    Your comment is full of inaccuracies and twisting of facts ...

    A. none of this was officially investigated by media or monsey rabbanim...Yes he did leave and resign and sign a document but that was to avoid a public smearing of his acts..This was by no means a beit din with dayanim. So it really is not recognized as a halachic founding of facts. In addition, this investigation was also not reported in any "media" as you stated.
    B.How do you invent that Tropper is still halachically married to his former wife? that is such slander in the biggest order! How can his former wife have gotten remarried halachically as she did, if he never gave her the get??? your facts are myths !
    C. Shannon Orand admitted in her questionable conversion process" there was no physical contact between me and Tropper" that was reported to the media (failed messiah.com).The audio tapes that she mysteriously leaked online do not reveal what she relates occured whatsover there are so many inconstitencies, so her testimony is not reliable and posul.
    what is your agenda on all of this anyway? years of gehinom for motzie shem rah and slander? perhaps you enjoy the consequences for your lies and exaggerations. I do not support what he may have done but lets keep the facts straight and not jump on a lynch wagon...

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  12. Recipients and PublicityJuly 30, 2010 at 11:15 AM

    "A. none of this was officially investigated by media or monsey rabbanim..."

    RaP: You are obviously trying to re-write history and whitewash Troppergate. Plenty of investigation was done by leading rabbonim in Monsey. Who are you kidding? Rabbi Ribiat led the investigations. The media, that is the ones who had a little guts, did plenty of digging. The way you deploy the word "officially" just shows you are trying to create new ways of covering up true verifiable facts.

    "Yes he did leave and resign and sign a document but that was to avoid a public smearing of his acts.."

    RaP: For Tropper to "leave and resign" is the biggest admission of guilt after 30 years of suspicions within Kol Yaakov and then 5 years of controversy surrounding EJF, openly condemned by the BADATS and Rav Shternbuch multiple times. Again who is kidding who? And indeed, as you admit he did "sign a document" OF RESIGNATION but it was because he was FORCED to and not because he wanted to be a nice guy suddenly, and it was he himself who did acts that were not mere "smears" but were recorded from live conversations and videos, many posted online, that were worthy of condemnation.

    "This was by no means a beit din with dayanim. So it really is not recognized as a halachic founding of facts."

    RaP: When roshei yeshiva and rabbonim, some of who are dayanim came together and summoned Tropper it was a Beis Din HaGadol and Tropper was forced to resign.

    "In addition, this investigation was also not reported in any "media" as you stated."

    RaP: Depends how you define "media" because The Jewish Star ran in-depth articles and reports, as did The Jewish Week, and many related parts to Troppergate were reported in Arutz Sheva, and news blogs such as VIN and many others that many people read because the Yated or The Jewish Press were in Tropper's pocket, or were afraid to say anything. They don't usually report shmutz so you have no argument that they did not report on Tropper.

    "B.How do you invent that Tropper is still halachically married to his former wife? that is such slander in the biggest order! How can his former wife have gotten remarried halachically as she did, if he never gave her the get??? your facts are myths !"

    RaP: Its known that he had an unhappy first marriage troubled with strong rumors of his philandering all over America and that at first he did not give his first wife a get and then he met his model and quickly married his second wife by heter meiah rabbonim at that time. If that is false prove it. Could be that he left a get for his first wife with a beis din eventually and that she subsequently picked it up. Who knows the truth and is willing to speak on the record. Could you please post contact information for his first wife, or send it to the blog owner Rabbi Dr. Eidensohn, so that what you say can be verified by third parties and if what you say is true then sincere opologies, you can be assured. There is no intent to hurt her, she is an innocent person and daughter of Rav Margolin caught in Tropper's world. Tropper only has himself to blame for all this suspicion, vagueness and intrigue because of his controversial behavior and habits that clouds much of his background. It's time for Tropper to release an official biography of his life stating exactly when he got married to his first and second wives and what the process in between was, otherwise no one knows the truth about anything when it comes to Tropper who is well-known for forging all sorts of rabbinic and other documents.

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  13. Recipients and PublicityJuly 30, 2010 at 11:16 AM

    "C. Shannon Orand admitted in her questionable conversion process" there was no physical contact between me and Tropper" that was reported to the media (failed messiah.com)."

    RaP: Who says that Shannon Orand's conversion was "questionable"? Only a Tropper-type would say that after she was converted by a beis din in Israel that was accepted by her rabbi and community in Texas. Now it is you that is being motzi sheim ra on a convert. As for what happened between her and Tropper, funny how you can now rely on failed messiah as "media" when it's just a blog, but in any case based on the taped conversations posted online Tropper and Shannon Orand had a very deep, intimate and passionate sexual relationship based on her and and his words. Just listen to them and there can be no doubt what is going on. You have to stupid to deny the truth of those conversations. In the end it was the publicized recordings of what transpired between Tropper and Orand sexually both on sound tape and video tape that forced Tropper to quit from his positions once and for all.

    "The audio tapes that she mysteriously leaked online do not reveal what she relates occured whatsover there are so many inconstitencies, so her testimony is not reliable and posul."

    RaP: Baloney! "Posul" or not, it forced Tropper to resign in the face of this public revelation of his sexual escapades as can be heard on the audio and video recordings!

    "what is your agenda on all of this anyway? years of gehinom for motzie shem rah and slander? perhaps you enjoy the consequences for your lies and exaggerations."

    RaP: Let's leave that to Hashem to judge what happens after 120. For now, the Torah clearly says that in this world and our lives we must do what we can to "ubiarta hara mikerbecha" and hopefully with Tropper forced to resign there is that much less damaging and impure evil in the midst of Klal Yisrael.

    "I do not support what he may have done"

    RaP: So why are you writing now to support him and his ugly actions?

    "but lets keep the facts straight"

    RaP: Tropper is incapable of "keeping facts straight" as has been proven over and over again as he manipulates and twists everything and everyone to get his way. He is a complicated and tough man, and mercifully he has been removed from any leadership position in the Jewish people once and for all.

    "and not jump on a lynch wagon..."

    RaP: Sorry, but there was no "lynch wagon" just a few people here and there, like a few courageous bloggers who just kept on asking questions and pointing out the obvious until Tropper self-destructed all on his own without help from anyone. So quit blaming other people for the problems that Tropper created for himself and then paid the price for his own indiscretions, sexual and otherwise.

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