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August 22, 2014 / 26 Av, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘connections’

Can We Stop The Peace Train?

Thursday, June 14th, 2012

It is difficult for some to accept the connections being made between Manhigut Yehudit and those who, when push came to shove, voted in favor of the Expulsion from Gush Katif. Both MK Miri Regev, who works tirelessly on behalf of every nationalist issue – be it the Ulpana Hill or the African infiltrators – and Minister Silvan Shalom, who has been a very positive force for the settlements and other national interests, were not in the right place at the critical hour. Many find our renewed friendship hard to swallow.

Since the governments of Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres put the “peace train” on the Oslo tracks, the sand in the settlement hourglass has been running out. The recognition of the “Palestinian nation and its rights” means the loss of recognition of the Jewish state and its rights. It’s as simple as that.

The Israeli Right did not have the tools to counter the alternative promoted by the Left because it never really had an alternative. All that the Right had was healthier national feelings. But feelings don’t stop trains – and they certainly cannot place them on a different track to a different destination. Inside the train, the Likud MKs will do all they can to help, but they are incapable of changing its direction.

When it gets to the point that continued support of the settlements will be deemed political suicide, the Likud MKs will need an alternative support that will provide them with a different ideology and leadership. That is the only way that they will be able to continue to fight. As long as that support does not exist, nobody can expect them to do more than they are doing now.

Have we at Manhigut Yehudit created that alternative support? There is no doubt that we have been creating an alternative for the past 15 years. We are now in the critical stage of establishing grass-roots connections. Without those direct connections between the various Likud activists, our alternative will remain ungrounded. But there is no connection between the factions without connections and the faction leaders. And the faction leaders, sadly, have failed in the past.

Those who want to make life easy will once again repeat the erroneous Effie Eitam paradigm. Once again they will register for their own small party that will split up yet again and run in the next election under a different name. As the old saying goes: fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me! Religious Zionist politics is once again leading its voters down the same, fallacious path. The same mistakes have been made over and over again, in innovative variations, beginning from the days of the Techiya Party. Whoever is duped again has only himself to blame.

Now back to the settlements. The Oslo train cannot be turned around without true leadership and an alternative track. There will be no new settlements in Judea and Samaria, no return to the glorious pioneering days, no new Ma’ale Adumim or Ariel, and no new neighborhoods inside those towns until the change is made. But the destruction can be stopped. The strategic change that is necessary entails establishing new, faith-based leadership that is not dependent on the established powers that be.

The Left is working wisely. It is progressing incrementally, fully synchronized with its people in the state’s attorney’s office and the High Court. They know that too great an achievement all at once could torpedo all their gains. But after the destruction of these small settlements, we will once again be hearing from Peace Now in Ofra, Shilo and the rest of the towns in the Binyamin region.

We must continue the struggle. If the decision makers believe that the threat of a real struggle is not hanging over their heads, their fear of the Left will naturally be greater than their fear of the settlers.

Why Do We Need an Asifa?

Sunday, April 29th, 2012

There is a huge argument raging right now on Twitter about the next big Internet Asifa scheduled for the end of May in Citi Field. Let me briefly summarize the other positions:

 

#1 The Asifa is just the latest attempt by the zealots and the gedolim they control to control our thoughts

#2 They’re worried about a neo-hashkofa haskola* and are trying to limit access to blogs and the like

#3 They fear their authority is eroding

* I first heard the phrase “neo-haskola” from Mis-nagid in 2005, and have used it promiscuously ever since

To which I reply: No, sorry. This Asifa has nothing to do with any of that. They’ve given up trying to ban the Internet, and the average haredi isn’t interested in thinking or reading. The problem, primarily, is porn.

To which the others reply (paraphrased): But people have always looked at porn! That can’t be the issue! Its a scam! A trick! They don’t really care about porn! They are just using that as an excuse! What they really want to do is run our lives, and close our minds. If they are saying they care about porn, they are a bunch of liars! And hypocrites! Porn has always been a problem! How dare they make believe that they all of a sudden care!

To which I reply: Sure people have always looked at porn, but over the last few years porn has become easier to consume. You can do it quickly, privately and at no cost. The desire to look at porn is a constant, I agree. But the obstacles to looking at porn have been mostly removed. When obstacles disappear consumption goes up. That’s ECO 101.

To which they reply: What are you talking about? You could ALWAYS look at porn

To which I reply: Sure people have always looked at porn, but over the last few years its become easier. You can do it quickly, privately and at no cost. The desire to look at porn is a constant, I agree. But the obstacles to looking at porn have been mostly removed. When obstacles disappear consumption goes up. That’s ECO 101

For some reason, my opponents are unable or unwilling to understand this. In their replies, they point out again, and again in various ways, that porn was always available. What they aren’t grasping is that nowadays more people are seeing more porn because, thanks to the Internet, the porn-watching experience has become so simple. In yesteryear, a shy kid might not be brave enough to ask an older cousin for a magazine, and he might not have had the money to buy one himself. Plus there was always the danger of being spotted in the store, or of the parents finding the contraband. Today, none of that is a worry. The teenager of 2012 can sit with his iPod and feast at a never-ending porn shmorg — all free, all private, with little to no risk of discovery. As a result, porn consumption has skyrocketed.

The purpose of the Asifa is to raise awareness and to discuss solutions. The analogy I gave on Twitter is this: Say you lived in a neighborhood that was frequently visited by bears. The non-idiots in the community would understand immediately that bears are attracted by food and you can encourage them to move on by cutting off their food supply. The non-idiots would take down their bird feeders and keep their garbage in doors for as long as possible. Expert non-idiots might start treating their garbage with some kind of bear repellent. But what abut the non-idiots who just don’t know about the bear? What about the people who are idiots? Until both groups are told about the problem and taught bear-control procedures, the bear will keep coming back. So, what you need to do is have a public meeting, where the problem can be publicized and solutions can be taught.

Its the same with the porn problem. Non-idiots already have filters and are already watching their kids and teaching them how to make good choices. But most people are not non-idiots. Most people don’t know what to do, and may not even be aware of the severity of problem. For instance, most people don’t know (until its too late) that a kid with an iPod is running a XXX theater during recess. Most people don’t know (until its too late) that their 15 year old texts on shabbos. Most people don’t know (until its too late) that their spouse has developed an inappropriate friendship with someone on Facebook How do you fix that? How do you protect people before it’s too late? By raising awareness at a public meeting, which is just another word for asifa.

I’m oversimplifying. Other problems the asifa will tackle include kids who text on shabbos, adults who look at porn, and married people who use the Internet to form emotional connections with members of the opposite sex or to meet extramarital partners and set up assignations. All of that happens today with greater frequency for the same reason 14 year old boys see more porn: Its become cheaper and easier to do. The purpose of the asifa is to raise awareness about all of these problems and to let people know what they can do to protect themselves and their families.

Report: Israel to Introduce Nationwide, High-Speed Internet

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

Israel’s state-owned Electric Company has announced plans to increase the speed of Internet connections by introducing a nationwide, high-speed broadband network in the coming months. Exploiting the small size of the densely populated country, the effort aims to put Israel at the forefront of the next generation of fiber-optic technology.

According to Sci-Tech Today, the fiber-optic lines can provide connections 10 to 100 times faster than current speeds.

“All the developing countries that have a vision for 10 years ahead, or 20 years ahead, understand that the name of the game will be communications, broadband communications, very fast communications,” said Tzvi Harpak, a senior vice president at the Electric Company.

Ex-Congressman Gets A Year For Lobbying On Behalf Of Terrorist-Funding Charity

Sunday, January 15th, 2012

Mark Deli Siljander, former congressman and deputy US ambassador to the United Nations, was sentenced last Wednesday to 366 days in federal prison for his role as an unregistered foreign agent for an Islamic charity found to have connections to al-Qaeda and the Taliban.

“A Missouri charity [Islamic American Relief Agency (IARA)] secretly funneled more than a million dollars to Iraq in violation of United States economic sanctions,”  an Attorney from the office of the Western District of Missouri said in a news release. “IARA then hired a former congressman to lobby the government on its behalf after it was listed as a specially designated global terrorist organization.”

 

Are You ‘Linked In?’

Wednesday, May 12th, 2010

Have you ever Googled your own name?  That may not be a question you hear often, but when you take the time to do so, you may be surprised by what you find.  Believe it or not, most employers Google the names of prospective employment candidates to see what they can find, and you do not want them to find your Purim pictures on Facebook.

 

Even when there are no pictures or blog posts that you are trying to hide, employers want to see that potential candidates have a web presence.  A Google search that produces no relevant results is almost as bad as a search that produces negative information.  It is for that reason that it is absolutely critical that every person create an account on www.linkedin.com/.

 

What is Linkedin?  To put it simply, Linkedin is Facebook without all the schmutz.  Instead of focusing on pictures of your latest party or relating the tale of the cutest thing ever that your daughter just did, Linkedin is a site devoted to professional networking. 

 

My wife and I had been house shopping in West Hempstead for more than a year without any luck.  A status update on Linkedin led to a rare house rental opportunity near the shul, and we moved less than 3 months later. 

 

That was a rather rare occurrence, however.  Primarily, Linkedin is a way to connect with other professionals to create business opportunities.  Linkedin users connect with people that they know who are in turn connected with their own groups of associates.  “Your network consists of your connections, your connections’ connections, and the people they know, linking you to a vast number of qualified professionals and experts: http://press.linkedin.com/about.”

 

The first step after creating your free Linkedin account is designing your profile.  Effective Linkedin profiles include all of the professional basics including a summary of qualifications, work history, a professional picture and updates on your current work related projects.

 

People often wonder if it is wise to share so much personal information on the Internet.  While I understand those concerns, the truth is there is very little we can do to hide anymore.  If someone wants it, they can have a satellite image of and a map to your house with just a few keystrokes. (If you don’t believe me try conducting a search for your name on www.intelius.com/.)

 

 In any event, Linkedin does have a number of privacy settings that can be used by those who are truly worried.

 

For employers, Linkedin presents the most effective opportunity to collect all of the relevant and up-to-date information about a prospective employee, and the best part is that the job seeker has the ability to control exactly what the employer finds!

 

Are you going for a job interview?  How much information do you know about the person that is interviewing you?  A Linkedin search can reveal pertinent information about the interviewer that can be incorporated into your interview answers.

 

You may be wondering how Linkedin can help you if you already have a job.  Linkedin has become a favorite tool for human resources professionals who are looking to “steal” qualified talent from other employers.  Even if you are not interested in changing jobs, your Linkedin profile is a great way for prospective clients to find you.

 

So, when you Google yourself, what do you find?  It took a concerted effort on my part, given the fame of the late great Rabbi Chaim Shapiro of Go My Son fame (no relation), but 95 percent of the time when you Google my name, my Linkedin profile comes up first.  Even though my daughter does do an incredible amount of cute things, my profile is what I prefer people find when they are looking for me.

 

Chaim Shapiro: M.Ed. is the assistant director of Career Services at Touro College and a social media consultant.  He holds a Master’s Degree in College Administration from Loyola University Chicago. He is the founder of the largest Orthodox online networking group, the Frum Network on Linkedin.  He welcomes comments, suggestions and feedback at chaimshapiro@aol.com.

Title: Emotional Freedom: Liberate Yourself from Negative Emotions and Transform Your Life

Wednesday, February 25th, 2009

Title: Emotional Freedom: Liberate Yourself from Negative Emotions and Transform Your Life

Author: Dr. Judith Orloff

Publisher: Harmony Books

 

 

   Using your gut feelings to figure out life and what you should do about it is the hallmark of Dr. Orloff’s Intuitive Healing practice. The popular psychiatrist’s newest book, Emotional Freedom: Liberate Yourself from Negative Emotions and Transform Your Life teaches readers how to transform their self-sabotaging tendencies in order to become free to live, to love, to forgive and to progress.

 

   The charm of Dr. Orloff’s works is that she is not a dull writer tossing off clich?s and boring bromides. She shares poignant and sometimes humorous insights into her own world of struggling with emotional issues, letting us know that she’s as human as the rest of us.

 

   In this book she describes how she tunes in to her intuitive powers so that readers can do the same (see her videos for more examples of this). Intuition lets the author, her clients and readers better grasp what distresses or de-stresses them and what they ought to do to improve the quality of their lives.

 

   Dr. Orloff’s prose is simple to understand, clearly presented in manageable chunks of information and practice instructions. When she explains how to “Reprogram the Biology of Jealousy” on pages 309-314, readers gain high impact insight and Action Step instructions for defeating some high stakes drama. The author explains that “Jealousy and envy are endemic to high school, a Petri dish for these emotional microbes.” In a few paragraphs she demonstrates how to bolster self-esteem and optimize human biology to bypass present or long-ago sadness that can last a lifetime.

 

   In Emotional Freedom, she present Seven Transformational Steps that help one confront fear and build courage, face frustration/disappointment and build patience, face loneliness and build connections, and more.

 

   The paperback will be released in March 2009. Buy a copy for your personal and business library. It’s that good.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/books//2009/02/25/

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