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July 27, 2016 / 21 Tammuz, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘choice’

Trump: The Principled Choice

Tuesday, May 31st, 2016

We believe in the politics of principle. We value character, integrity, and politicians who ground principled philosophies in the Constitution. Yet we find ourselves staring across a divide at fellow conservatives with whom we’ve previously stood side by side and who – claiming principle – have declared themselves NeverTrumps. Not only do we find their arguments unavailing, we wonder what principle they think they’re upholding.

Politics is the art of the possible, and barring entirely unforeseen events either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton will become the next President. Because we believe that a Clinton presidency would be far more harmful to America and to the world than a Trump presidency, we view our anti-Hillary-driven support for Trump as highly principled. More importantly, we believe that any principled approach must compare the candidates to each other rather than to some unavailable ideal.

NeverTrumps cite numerous flaws in Trump’s character that, in theory or in other circumstances, we might consider problematic. In practice, however, Trump’s character concerns us less than does Clinton’s. She is demonstrably corrupt, unprincipled, and power hungry. She has destroyed women who complained about her husband’s predations and imperiled national security by mishandling classified materials and abandoning Benghazi. And even if Trump has inflated his business prowess, he is a far more successful developer than she was Secretary of State.

NeverTrumps also worry about the debilitating effect of a Republican President Trump on the conservative movement. Again, we are sympathetic, but we cannot imagine how Trump might inflict more damage on the cause of constitutionalism than a Supreme Court majority untethered to textual language and hostile to original meaning—a Clinton goal. And we are encouraged both by the Trump camp’s list of potential judicial nominees as well as by a number of his policy advisors who are solidly conservative.

We’ve raised these points before, but we have not addressed a NeverTrump argument that hits close to home to us personally: revulsion at distasteful elements among Trump’s supporters–specifically white supremacists whose trendy “Alt-right” moniker does little to distract from the hoary ugliness of their coarse, unimaginative anti-Semitism. Trump took too long to repudiate David Duke. His wife Melania Trump, while disapproving of anti-Semitic threats hurled at journalist Julia Ioffe over her less-than-flattering profile of Mrs. Trump, suggested that Ioffe had “provoked” the hatred. And those stories are but the tip of the iceberg; we have seen and heard numerous reports – and been direct recipients – of vile Jew hatred spewing forth from those defending Trump’s honor.

Political leaders should indeed disassociate themselves from hatemongers seeking to speak on their behalf. But those who think that Trump is creating or promoting

anti-Semitism are fooling themselves. America’s white supremacists have not grown more anti-Semitic over the past year. Social media, press attention, and a leader who rightly and refreshingly mocks political correctness has merely brought them out of the woodwork. Jew hatred from this right wing fringe has become open rather than closeted. In our view, this renders it less dangerous, not more; repressing its expression lulls the public into complacency and denial while aggravating inveterate anti-Semites’ unhinged sense of grievance. It is for the same reason that outlawing “hate speech” or Holocaust denial is so counterproductive: stifled, anti-Semitism only festers and spreads.

We are heartened that most of the right has responded with revulsion. We also have some perspective on the insignificance of these crazies. While it is disconcerting to hear such voices surfacing, their relative silence until now shows how successfully the right has sidelined them. This is in sharp contrast to the way the political left has mainstreamed its own hatemongers. Barack Obama joined Louis Farrakhan’s Million Man March, and spent twenty years seeking spiritual guidance from Jeremiah Wright. Like Obama, Clinton has actively embraced Al Sharpton and Black Lives Matter, refusing to explain that all lives matter. Max Blumenthal, the son of Clinton’s closest advisor, is America’s leading Jewish apologist for anti-Semitism and Israel’s destruction. As the first American politician to favor a state for the PLO and by her own account the initiator of the deal giving Iran nuclear weapons, Clinton insidiously mouths pro-Israel platitudes while embracing and empowering terrorists hell-bent on Jewish genocide. It is hard to see a Clinton presidency as anything but an existential threat to the State of Israel. These affirmative choices concern us far more than Trump’s disappointing reluctance to distance himself from fringe voters whose views he shows no signs of endorsing but whose votes may help him win.

Finally, we have always been skeptical of the argument that Clinton inevitably will beat Trump in a landslide bringing down the Republican Congressional majority. Underestimating Trump has become something of a pattern for the political class. He has a long way to go, but Republicans are falling in line and large numbers of independent and even Democratic voters seem eager and excited to vote for Trump. Clinton is a passionless candidate with passionless supporters. We see Trump as positioned to win, and to run as enough of an outsider to allow those candidates seeking distance from him to claim it. Recent polls seem to support this view.

At the end of the day, we do not believe that it is unprincipled to express a preference between choices that we consider far from ideal. We hope that the NeverTrump holdouts will join us soon—both on the anti-Hillary train and in the ongoing work necessary for conservatives to recapture influence within the GOP. We hope the NeverTrumps come to embrace the erosion of the tyranny of political correctness. Together we will pay attention to the anti-Semites; thanks to Trump it’s becoming easier.

Bruce Abramson and Jeff Ballabon

Netanyahu’s Choice for Ambassador to Italy Withdraws

Friday, May 13th, 2016

Israeli-Italian journalist and former Member of Parliament Fiamma Nirenstein, now living in Jerusalem, who was appointed by Prime Minister Netanyahu as ambassador to Italy, has withdrawn her candidacy. Nirenstein issued a statement this week saying she had informed Netanyahu she no longer sought the position. “I thank the prime minister for the trust he put in me. I would like to express my readiness to continue to contribute to the State of Israel as best I can,” she wrote.

Israeli media suggested Nirenstein gave up on her prestigious appointment in response to negative views by the Jewish community of Rome, who feared that Nirenstein, who only two years ago had served as an Italian MP, would cause charges of dual loyalty. Rome Chief Rabbi Riccardo Di Segni said there may be problems, “Just read what’s already on the social networks about her dual citizenship.”

David Israel

Palestinian Hacker Posts on Marc Zuckerberg’s Facebook Wall

Tuesday, August 20th, 2013

A Palestinian hacker posted a message on Facebook founder Marc Zuckerberg’s wall to show there is a bug in the social network’s security settings.

Khalil Shreateh of Hebron posted information about the bug on Zuckerberg’s wall late last week, following unsuccessful attempts to report the bug to Facebook security. The bug allowed Shreateh to post on the walls of other members despite security settings.

“Sorry for breaking your privacy … I had no other choice … after all the reports I sent to Facebook team,” Shreateh wrote on Zuckerberg’s wall.

Facebook security had denied that the flaw was a bug.

Shreateh, who is unemployed, had hoped to win a $500 reward paid out to hackers who discover bugs on Facebook. Instead, his Facebook account was frozen, since he violated Facebook’s terms of service by posting illegally on Zuckerberg’s page. His account has since been reinstated.

Zuckerberg has 18 million friends on his Facebook page.

JTA

The Collective Jew

Monday, August 19th, 2013
I keep trying to make this point to show what I believe is the unique Israel. In the last few weeks, three incidents have happened that once again reinforce what I have known all my life. Am I wrong to believe there is no other country in the world that would do these things?

Here’s the first amazing story:

A young cancer patient on the way to the US with a bunch of other sick kids can’t find her passport.

With no other choice, the young girl was removed from the plane and the plane prepared to depart after a fruitless search on the plane, in the airport, everywhere. Minutes before takeoff, while the plane was taxiing to the runway, they found the passport in another child’s backpack.

Too late, no? The stewardess told the pilot – the pilot radioed the tower and was given permission to turn back. The story appears here.

As the child cried, so too did people on the plane – and the stewardesses, and people on the ground. Amazing.

And the second story…

David Finti is 19 years old. He is a Romanian Jew. While boarding a train, David was electrocuted and severely burned. The local Jewish community contacted the Jewish Agency. They recognize the collectivism of our people just as on the Israeli side it was recognized as well. And so, Israel flew the young man to Israel, making him an Israeli citizen so that he could get critical care free of charge. David and his parents were flown to Israel and are now at Hadassah’s Ein Kerem hospital. The story appears here.

Yet another story in the last few days has come to light. Israel recently managed to bring in another 17 Yemenite Jews – leaving 90 left.What amazes me is that we were able to bring another group here to Israel and more, that we know how many remain. We are watching, waiting, hoping to bring the last remnants of what was once a great community here to Israel.

It is what we do. Three stories of how Israel watches, Israel waits, Israel acts.

Visit A Soldier’s Mother.

Paula Stern

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/a-soldiers-mother/the-collective-jew/2013/08/19/

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