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July 27, 2016 / 21 Tammuz, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘candidate’

The Campaign That Never Ends

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

As the dust settles and the fog lifts from this tumultuous year of political campaigning, we are left to wonder how our country will evolve. Will the economy bounce back? Will our schools make progress? And how about U.S. relations with Israel? Will they grow weaker or stronger? Will the administration support an Israeli strike on Iran?

No one truly knows. Perhaps this explains the gripping fascination we had with the just-concluded campaign. The intensity of emotions was palpable. The explosive passion for one candidate or the other inundated the streets of our country. Tens of millions were glued to the presidential debates and media coverage of the campaign drew an impressive number of viewers, listeners and readers.

The question, of course, is why? Why were the boisterous noises of this election campaign so dominating? Why were we magnetized by the daily polls, the gaffes and the statistics? Why did we so often give in to our relentless urge to report about the political news of the day on Facebook, Twitter and other social arenas?

Some observers say it was the appeal to vote and make a difference that drew our attention so fiercely. Others say we were lured by the appearance and personality of the candidates, by the characteristics they exuded and which we strongly empathized with or profoundly desired –integrity, intelligence, charisma, etc.

I suggest an alternative take on this phenomenon: It was our yearning for leadership that drew us to the candidates and their respective parties. And understandably so; after all, our generation has repeatedly suffered from leaders – in politics, in sports, in culture and in many other realms of our lives – who fell so low shortly after climbing so high.

Thus, as we followed the candidates’ every move, as we listened to their every promise, as we acted on their every call, we hoped and prayed that authentic leadership could be restored, that people of merit would once again become leaders of spirit.

But our search for this leader ought not to focus solely on the outside. For this optimal leader exists deep within the chambers of our souls. And day after day he hankers to emerge and fulfill his high calling and noble potential to live a life of divine meaning, a life empowered by our heritage and traditions, a life bolstered by deeds of goodness and kindness.

“Behold, the days are coming,” the prophet Amos proclaimed, “when I will send a famine on the land – not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of God” (Amos 8:11).

It is the word of God, emanating from our inner quintessential leader, that we must seek out and realize.

Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, chief rabbi of Great Britain, tells the story of how as a young student of philosophy at Cambridge University he traveled the world to visit great leaders. When he met with the Lubavitcher Rebbe, the Rebbe asked him about the condition of Jewish students at Cambridge, and what he was doing to help them.

“In the situation I currently find myself,” Rabbi Sacks began to respond, whereupon the Rebbe interrupted him and said: “No one finds themselves in a situation. You put yourself in a situation, and if you put yourself in that situation, you can put yourself in another situation!”

Obviously there are times when we find ourselves in situations that are beyond our control. But at almost every given moment we are presented with the opportunity of putting ourselves in a situation of leadership wherein we are called on to heed the voice of our inner leader and become agents of light to the world around us.

The 2012 presidential campaign is now over. Whether its outcome is good or bad for our country, time will tell.

But there exists a campaign, beyond the limits of time and space, that will never end. The candidate in this campaign may not be glamorous or flamboyant, but he is ambitious and determined to unleash his unique potential and actualize his God-given skills and talents. This candidate is campaigning for a life term. He refuses to rest or resign. He begs us, each and every day, to give him a chance, to allow him to act, to let him speak, to permit him to be. He passionately yearns for your attention, and more important, for your support.

Rabbi Pinchas Allouche

Likud Primaries: How to Vote?

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

Likud Primaries are coming soon, and it’s time to think about who should be on the Likud’s MK list for the upcoming national elections.

Last night I reviewed the list of candidates and started making notes to myself of potential people to get my vote. The process works as follows: You must vote for 12 candidates on the list as your primary candidates, and then 1 additional person as your regional candidate.

So far, the only candidates that I am 100% certain about are from the list from Mattot Arim. Their current update is as follows (I am providing only the Likud-related section of the report. You can read their full report here on their website (look for the English posts on the right hand side):

Accountability 4: Vote for Those who Get Things Done – Mattot Arim’s Parliamentary Report 4 

We invite you to vote for the high-scorers, so that this time, YOUR Knesset and YOUR Government, will get DONE what YOU want!  Here is Parliamentary Report 4 by Mattot Arim:  http://heb.mattotarim.org/images/docs/yamin.pdf  It discloses what the MKs and ministers got done in the first half of year 2011.

High scoring MKs and ministers, in the attached report, are those who have been standing strong against Oslo, Disengagement, Palestinian State  and other pro-Arab anti-Israel paradigms.

There are 4 MKs and one minister which consistently do well in all reports – Danny Danon, Zev Elkin, Zipi Hotovely and Yariv Levin. Top-ranking minister: Yuli Edelstein. Make sure these 5 are on your list!! A new but particularly strong candidate is Moshe Feiglin.

Residents of the Ashdod-Rehovot area (shfela area)  — please take note!! It is important for you to vote for Meir Malka. He is running against a very powerful proponent of disengagement. If you vote for Meir Malka who has the same kind of national viewpoint as you do, you are sparing the Knesset his rival who could be very dangerous.  Please forward this paragraph about the important candidacy of Shfela representative Meir Malka, to EVERYONE you know in the following cities: Ashdod, Rishon leZion, Rehovot, Modiin, Lod, Gedera, Yavneh, Nes Ziona, Ramleh, Kiryat Ekron, Beer Yakov, Bet Dagan, Bnei Ayish, Gan Yavne, Mazkeret Batya, Macabim-Reut. Only residents of those cities are eligible to vote for Meir Malka.<

Reminder: if you want to help with Mattot Arim’s important national accountability project, learn more: http://mattotarim1.blogspot.co.il/2012/10/we-need-your-help-right-now-to-generate.html. And feel free to contact us at mattot.arim@gmail.com.

More updates to come…

PS: Just make sure NOT to vote for Zachi HaNegbi!

Visit The Muqata.

Jameel@Muqata

Humble Pie

Thursday, November 8th, 2012

Now, there’s a fine exercise in the diplomatic niceties one must endure when one is prime minister of a small state in the near east, surrounded by enemies, with few friends to spare, and one’s favorite candidate has come up short.

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) met on Wednesday with U.S. ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro, to congratulate him on his boss’s win the night before. Both men knew the score, both knew that if the other guy had won there would have been a genuine, huge smile on Bibi’s face, but God, as usual, insisted on His mysterious ways, and so, there you go.

If I were Bibi, then after that obligatory meeting I would have locked myself in my office with a good book and a box of Lady Godiva rich Belgian chocolates and sulked for a couple of hours.

Of all the things our side has lost last Tuesday, losing the chance for the inside track to the White House was the most painful. We’re doing OK with the Kremlin, but we desperately need someone who knows someone on Pennsylvania Avenue. Israel can’t afford four years of tense relations with the second term prez.

How’s about renaming Dizengoff Street  “Obama Boulevard”?

Yori Yanover

American Voters In Israel Make Their Mark On Two Electoral Fronts

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

JERUSALEM – More than 100,000 American voters in Israel cast their ballots for a presidential candidate, with nearly 80,000 of them having submitted a ballot provided by iVoteIsrael, a local non-profit organization that spent the past few months aggressively encouraging American expatriates living in Israel to register and vote. The remaining registered voters cast their ballots via the absentee route.

Due to what was expected to be a tight race for the White House between President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, Israeli-based representatives of both political parties said that the overseas vote could possibly influence the final tally in some battleground states. The iVoteIsrael organization estimated that 7,500 Americans living in Israel are registered in Florida, and 3,500 in both Ohio and Pennsylvania.

According to an exit poll conducted by iVoteIsrael among 1,572 voters who cast their ballots in Israel, Romney received 85 percent of the vote. But Democratic Party representatives in Israel charged that the poll was skewed since iVoteIsrael was successful in registering mostly traditional and Orthodox American voters, whose political leanings are considered to be more conservative.

Similarly, American immigrants living in Israel might have an impact on a possibly changing political landscape in the January 22 Israeli elections. At least three Americans are vying for viable positions on various Knesset slates. Primaries for most of the major Israeli political factions will take place in the coming weeks.

The most well known English-speaking candidate is affluent former hi-tech whiz Naftali Bennett, who served from 2006-2008 as then-opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu’s chief of staff and is a former director general of the Yesha Council. Bennett, the 40-year-old son of American immigrants, is a leader of the rightist My Israel movement.

Bennett is virtually guaranteed to garner enough support to be placed among the top five slots on the Jewish Home Knesset list. According to recent polls, the merger between Jewish Home and the National Union could bring the reinvigorated religious Zionist political faction up to 10 seats in the elections. Jeremy Gimpel, who is originally from Atlanta and who has gained a local and international Internet audience as co-host of the “Tuesday Night Live” talk show in Jerusalem, is also running for a feasible slot on the Jewish Home Knesset list.

Staten Island native Daniel Tauber recently announced his candidacy for the 35th spot on the Likud Party’s primary list, which is reserved for “young political activists.” The 29-year-old lawyer-turned-politician is the executive director of “Likud Anglos.” As the Likud and Yisrael Beiteinu are running a combined Knesset list in the upcoming elections, Tauber’s chances of entering the Israeli parliament would be a long shot.

Steve K. Walz

Can Romney Win? A Tale of Three Maps

Monday, November 5th, 2012

I’m addicted to the website Real Clear Politics, like most political junkies, and these past few weeks I’ve increased my dose several times over. The last time I was this engaged in a presidential campaign was back in 2004, when, a couple of days before V-day the swing states, as if magically, lined up for Democratic candidate John Kerry. So I went with a Kerry prediction, which made me look like a total goat – in fact, a few loving readers, God bless their hearts, emailed me goat images for my personal amusement (and theirs).

I’m not doing that again. But I’ve been staring at the RCP maps for a whole lot of time and it looks like Obama has not been able to shake off the Romney hold, has not managed to break away from the tie. Today, 11/05/2012, Obama has 47.9% of the national vote, compared with Romney’s 47.4%. Yesterday – exactly the same numbers. Saturday, 11/03/2012, Obama 47.4%, Romney 47.2%. Romney’s numbers are tenacious, they’re not going to change come election day, in terms of the national vote. So, it comes down to the swing states’ vote.

Here’s the way the vote looks today in the states:

Clearly, neither candidate has been able to get even close to the needed 270 electoral votes. They’ve been stuck with these numbers since the debates, and the numbers show that the country, both on a national and on a state-by-state level, thinks both candidates are equally qualified for the job. That, by itself, is a big advantage for Romney. But it doesn’t seem to be enough to get him through the finish line. In fact, judging by the 2004 election, the close vote goes to the incumbent.

This is the map of the Tuesday, 11/6/2012 vote, if every swing state where Obama is leading goes to him, and every Romney-leaning state goes to Romney.

Obama wins handily. It’ll be far from a landslide, but a win is a win is win, and President Barack Obama will have received a mandate from the nation to carry out his agenda for four more years.

What options are open to Romney?

There’s one blue state in which the Obama lead is around half a percentage point, which means he has no lead at all. That’s Colorado. On the unhappy map above it shows blue, but, in reality, it could just as well be showing red. Romney can take Colorado, it’s a realistic expectation.

Colorado delivers 9 electoral votes. If Romney wins, his tally goes up to 257, Obama’s goes down to 281. That’s not enough, obviously.

Which brings us back to the ancient truism about Republican candidates after WW2 having to win Ohio. Take a look at the map – Ohio brings 18 seats. With all other states staying as they are, a red Ohio takes Romney/Ryan to the White House.

What are Romeny’s chances of winning Ohio? Surprisingly good. The RCP average gives Ohio to Obama right now at 2.9% advantage over Romney (49.4% – 46.5%). That’s just outside the margin of error, which means, with a lot of help from the weather, a get-out-the-vote infrastructure, the governor (Republican) and the secretary of state (Republican), and many local events – Ohio could just as easily go red as it could go blue.

Come back to the Jewish Press website election night, we’re planning to open a live chat forum for pundits and readers, yapping about the one thing about which we can no longer do anything…

By the way, the Redskins have lost their most recent game, which is one of the signs that the incumbent in Washington loses. See? We’re very scientific over here, at the Jewish Press online.

Yori Yanover

After Sandy, Volunteers Crisscross Manhattan to Help

Friday, November 2nd, 2012

In a nearly dark corner of lower Manhattan, in an area otherwise known as Tribeca, Rabbi Zalman Paris stands tall, cellular phone in hand, to answer another call from a young volunteer eager to offer assistance. Days after Hurricane Sandy left millions across New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and New Jersey without electricity, food or water, there are plenty of people who want to help victims and their communities recover.

From his window, Paris, director of Chabad-Lubavitch of Tribeca and SoHo, watched the storm hurl itself into the homes and lives of residents nearby. The storm prevented him from venturing outdoors, but the moment he was able to, the rabbi assembled a plan and a team to help his neighbors.

“Many organizations have joined us in our efforts to help those in need during this hard time,” he said.

Paris partnered with Rabbi Levi Shmotkin of Chabad Young Professionals, Ari Teman of JCorps, and Julie Menin, a candidate for Manhattan Borough President.

“We brought in a paramedic to aid the elderly, who with no way out of their buildings needed immediate medical attention,” Shmotkin relayed.

Menin detailed that she kept the 10,000 people on her contact list updated by email.

“People would email that they needed food, water, diapers and baby formula. I then sent an email blast to Rabbi Paris,” said Menin.

All told, more than 100 volunteers traversed lower Manhattan, crisscrossing the city’s streets to visit nearly 3,000 apartment units in one day alone.

One longtime JCorps volunteer named Jillian described her experience as “eye opening.” More than 100 volunteers assisted the Tribeca effort.

“Today we visited some housing developments of the lower east side to bring food and water to the elderly and disabled citizens who are without,” she said. “You really become thankful for what you do have during a time like this.”

With the Sabbath approaching, they are hoping that the electricity will be restored.

“We may not have power, but we will definitely be spending the Sabbath with the many people and volunteers who are here with us,” said Paris. “Although many fled the neighborhood prior to the storm, our focus was on those that didn’t have anywhere to go.”

Chabad.org

Mitt Romney for President

Sunday, October 28th, 2012

I am not a partisan voter. My voting record clearly shows that. Here is my voting record since 1968:

Humphrey (D) McGovern (D) Carter (D) Reagan (R) Reagan (R) Bush (41) (R) Clinton (D) Clinton (D) Gore (D) Bush (43) (R) McCain (R)

I choose candidates based on who I think will be do the best job for the country, for Israel, and for the Jewish people. I do not vote by party.

Although I have finally made my decision – for the first time I am not as sure as I usually am about which candidate will actually be the better President.

The last debate added nothing toward that end. The two candidates, Barack Obama and Mitt Romney remain the same in my eyes. Their views were not made clearer at all on any of the issues that are important to the American people nor to me as a Jew.

I recently wrote that their views on Israel though not identical are both positive – and not all that dissimilar. I also said that for the first time my decision would not be based on that issue. Instead -“It’s (still) the economy, Stupid!” Of course the economy matters to Jews just as much as it does to everyone else. But it is definitely not a Jewish issue.

I do not see any break away solutions by either candidate. The President’s policies have thus far not done the job. Unemployment is still high – as are gas prices. His stimulus polices haven’t really helped all that much. The deficit is soaring . He is also over focusing on environmental issues – by over regulating businesses and preventing more opportunities to become energy independent. That too stifles economic growth. And adds to the deficit

His counter to that is that a divided congress is holding him back from doing more. And that his energy policies are the most productive in history. But that doesn’t explain why he didn’t do more to fix the economy during the first 2 years of his administration when he had a bullet proof congress. Instead he focused on a passing a controversial health care bill that contributes to the exploding deficit.

Romney on the other hand wants to implement a supply side economic policy that lowers taxes for everyone. He says that small businessmen many of whom file individual tax returns would be hurt by the higher taxes the Obama administration wants to impose on them and that would dis-incentivize them from investing the capital they need to grow their businesses and hire new people.

The President countered that Romney’s economic policy does not add up and that it would either explode the deficit even further, or that he would have to cut popular deductions like mortgage interest to make up for the loss.

Romney says that he would go full bore into developing all sources of energy including off shore drilling and do things like extending the Canadian pipeline (which the President rejected).

Obama also claims that he has actually increased oil production under his administration.

Romney would increase the military budget to restore it to the levels that existed before the Obama military budget cuts.

Obama says that the military doesn’t need to be as large and expensive as is used to be – even according the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Increasing the military budget will only grow the deficit.

How the President will grow the economy is still a mystery to me. Platitudes like “the rich must pay their fair share” are meaningless hyperbole designed to appeal to class envy in my view.

He has had four years to fix the economy and he hasn’t done it yet. He still blames Bush saying he inherited this mess from him – and that it was much worse than anyone thought. He touts the fact that in spite of that – the economy has still improved. Though admittedly only slightly. He now claims he needs more time and a willing congress.

Romney says Obama’s polices have failed and it’s time for someone else with a different approach to try. He claims his business experience will help him achieve more private sector jobs and a return to a healthy economy.

Harry Maryles

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/haemtza/mitt-romney-for-president-2/2012/10/28/

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