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December 5, 2016 / 5 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘foundation’

Liberman Tells New Lone Soldier, ‘To This Day I Speak With Mistakes and A Thick Accent’

Thursday, October 20th, 2016

Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman went out of his way Tuesday to make new immigrants feel comfortable during the traditional welcoming ceremony in his sukkah for Lone Soldiers and Diaspora Volunteers.

Among them was hareidi soldier Nissan Bloom from the Netzach Yehuda (Nahal Hareidi) battalion.

Bloom, a hareidi volunteer from the United States who enlisted into the army right after arriving alone in Israel, shared his personal story, touching all those present.

“Where is Nisan Bloom?” asked Liberman during his speech. While doing so, he addressed a direct statement to him: “To this day I speak while making mistakes and with a thick Russian accent.

“As I have said many times before, in Israel the sky is the limit. It makes no difference if you are a new immigrant or a native Israeli. If you are determined and seek to fulfill yourself and your dreams – everything is possible.”

During his speech Bloom described the debates he had prior joining the army, and described how he dealt the various difficulties. “I have always wanted to come and live in Israel but at the same time I was always nervous about the gaps I would have in the language and culture, and also the quality of education. I believed that going into the army would be the best way to integrate and to learn more about Israeli lifestyle while at the same time I can live by my principles.

Blood said that he chose to serve with the Netzach Yehuda battalion because he figured that was the best way to serve as a fighter for the army, “and as a religious believer, who serves his God.” For those reasons, he said, he chose to leave his home, “although this was very hard for my family, and to give of myself to the country.

“Being a combat soldier means you must overcome the difficulties no matter how challenging they are, as we are fighting for something big, something bigger than us. Faith is stronger than all and can overpower everything,” Bloom said.

The Nahal Haredi Foundation supports Nissan and his friends throughout their army service.

“Just like Nissan, you can find dozens of hareidi soldiers in the battalion who are originally from abroad, who volunteered to serve in the Israeli army, leaving behind their families,” the foundation said in a statement. “There are dozens of hareidi Lone Soldiers who are also Israeli citizens disconnected from their families, due to their choice to serve in the army.

“We would like to thank the hareidi families who support and provide the Lone Soldiers with a second home, so that the integration between their lives with Torah and Mitzvot along with significant army service is complete. We do all we can at all times and will continue to do so, to ensure that no soldier feels lonely during their army service.”

Hana Levi Julian

NY State Attorney General Let Clinton Foundation Hide Foreign Donors

Monday, September 12th, 2016

New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, is letting the Clinton Family foundation break the law. According to NY State Law, Schneiderman is supposed to make the Clinton Foundation and Clinton Health Access Initiative (and all charities) publicly disclose the names of foreign governments and the millions they donate each year to the charities but he’s not doing it.

Law Newz reports that New York’s charity law clearly states: “Organizations that received a contribution or grant from a government agency during the reporting period shall include the name of each agency from which contributions were received and the amount of each contribution.”

This type of information about the Clinton Foundation may disclose whether the foreign governments that gave money to the Clinton charities also had special access to Hillary Clinton when she was ran State.

Funny thing is that with Schneiderman as the AG, NY has a reputation of requiring “more transparency from non-profits operating within its borders than many other regulators.”  Perhaps the AG is allowing the Clinton Foundation avoid transparency because Schneiderman is also a member of Clinton’s “leadership council” in New York. After all, this AG’s actions suggest that he lives by the motto “politics first.”

A Scripps Washington Bureau review of tax returns and regulatory filings found that year after year the Clinton charities have ignored New York law and related instructions. However, the office of Attorney General Schneiderman, a Democrat whom Hillary Clinton named to her campaign’s “leadership council” in New York, did not respond to Scripps’ questions about the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI), which has never publicly disclosed in New York filings the identity of its foreign government contributors or the amounts they give each year. Scripps also discovered CHAI did not report hundreds of millions of dollars in foreign government donations to the state.

However, Schneiderman’s office said it considers the Clinton Foundation, which is a separate charity, “in step” with state rules.

“He’s not doing his job in that case,” said David Nelson, an attorney and former partner at the accounting firm of Ernst & Young who served on the regulations and legislation committee of the Council On Foundations, the philanthropy industry’s equivalent of the American Bar Association.

In 2009, Secretary Clinton’s first year heading the State Department, the Clinton Foundation disclosed to New York only a lump sum of $122 million in foreign government donations, listing the amount on a required form that directs all charities to “list each government contribution (grant) separately.” The foundation continued to provide the lump sum disclosures for foreign governments in every year that followed.

Nelson said, “The Clinton Foundation cannot say they are in compliance with New York regulations.”

Schneiderman’s own office issued detailed instructions for all charities warning them to make sure the total amount of contributions by government disclosed to the state is equal to what the charities report to the IRS. From 2010-2014 Schneiderman allowed the Clintons to ignore his rule, allowing Bubba and Hillary to hide $225 million in foreign government donations.

Just last week, on August 29th  Schneiderman won a victory in federal court against the right-leaning Citizens United forcing them disclose key information about its major donors. Following the decision Schneiderman bragged:

 

“Today’s decision is a victory for common sense oversight of New York’s vast nonprofit sector. New Yorkers deserve to know their donations are protected against fraud and abuse, and today the court protected that right.”
Schneiderman meant every word of the above, but omitted the part that he only enforces transparency laws against conservative organizations.  After all, the Clinton Foundation’s been getting off scot-free.

Schneiderman’s also attacks conservatives in other ways. For example, with former VP Al Gore he formed a group called “AGs United for Clean Power.” This Schneiderman-led organization’s mission is to come up with ways to prosecute people, organizations, and companies who are climate skeptics. The politically oriented prosecutor convinced 25 other progressive Attorneys General from 25 states, territories, cities and counties to join his assault on free speech (perhaps, these attorneys skipped their law school constitutional law classes when the topic was the 1st Amendment).

Another example of Schneiderman’s equal justice for all liberals only, is his vendetta against former AIG head Maurice “Hank” Greenberg (yes he got the nickname in the Army because of the Hall-of-Fame MLB star).  For over a decade, the New York State AG’s office has stalked Mr. Greenberg. The legal action was started by liberal New York Attorney General and famous client #9 Eliot Spitzer, but was kept alive by the liberal bloodsuckers who succeeded him. The latest of these political vampires is Eric T. Schneiderman (by the way the reports that the “T” stands for “tough shit I am going to make stuff up and screw you anyway” are not true).

Originally there were nine civil charges filed against Mr. Greenberg. Right off the bat seven of the civil charges were laughed out of court. It was revealed that Schneiderman sat on potentially exculpatory evidence in their civil lawsuit (something my lawyer friends tell me is a bad thing). Actually the witness’s statements debunk the remaining two civil charges.

In March 2015 a Wall Street Journal editorial said, “This Spitzer/Schneiderman production is a political case to win headlines and should be dismissed as a first step toward reform of the AG’s office.”

In fact Eric “no justice for conservatives”  Schneiderman, has already conceded that money damages are off the table even if he manages to prevail on the remaining two claims – which he can’t.

The real reason Mr. Greenberg is being pursued is that he committed an immoral act for someone who lives in the People’s Republic of New York he dares to spend millions of his dollars supporting conservative candidates. To Schneiderman that’s a terrible offense, one worth him using his supposedly non-political office to pursue his personal political agenda.

It’s progressives like Schneiderman who label people by their income or their politics. That’s why he allows Bubba and Hillary Clinton off the hook and persecutes Greenberg. Those of us who are ruled by morality instead of politics evaluate people by their character and  their actions. Hank Greenberg has proven he is a man with a big heart and a concern for people. As my friend Kurt Schlichter wrote:

He lied about his age to enlist as a soldier in World War II and marched through Europe with Patton’s Third Army, where he saw firsthand the bloody carnage of National Socialism [during his WWII service he not only saw horrors as he rushed the beaches of Normandy on D-Day but participated in the liberation of the Nazi concentration camps]. Later, he returned to active duty to fight in Korea. He earned the Bronze Star and was recently awarded the French Legion of Honor for his service on D-Day. Back home, Greenberg turned AIG into a global giant but, mindful of the chaos he witnessed firsthand as a young man, he devoted significant time and effort to philanthropy and to promoting peaceful trade and international relations to help avoid repeating the mistakes of the past.

Based on his actions and character, Eric T. Schneiderman does not believe that justice is blind.  Rather it seems he believes justice is his tool to score political points. In NY State progressives running for president don’t need to follow the law. However a war hero who has donated his time as well as money to a full range of medical and cultural charities is a target– not because he committed some violation, but because he donated to the wrong politicians.

 

 

Jeff Dunetz

Shabbat, The Foundation Of Our Heritage

Thursday, September 8th, 2016

The term for Shabbat as an “Oasis in Time” belongs to Abraham J. Hershel. While describing the Shabbat and its beauty he suggested that the Shabbat is an oasis in time. For a brief moment, as we usher in the Shabbat, time, as we know it, stands still. All our unpaid bills, office hassles, and professional aggravations are put on hold as we dedicate one day to God.

For six days prior, we pretend to believe that we are in control of our lives and our destiny. We think we have the power to make choices and to effect change in this world – that we are in control of our own destiny. Shabbat comes along and sobers us up. It literally becomes a reality check. No, we are not in control. In reality, we can only affect a very small portion of our lives.

When I describe the central theme of Shabbat to my students, I always focus on that point: that Shabbat is a time when the Jewish People recognize their mortality and in essence declare that G-d is in control of the universe.

Almighty G-d is truly the one who shapes our destiny and the destiny of the entire world. When Shabbat enters, we acknowledge this with modesty and introspection. We recognize that we are only a speck in this great world and only a small impression in the unfolding of time.

For me Shabbat represents one of the foundations of Judaism. There are so many laws and concepts in Judaism that baffle me and that I have little understanding of. But Shabbat is the one practice in Judaism that resonates so clearly of its authenticity and truthfulness.

As an educator I have always believed that teachers should realize this as well. Shabbat is not a time to burden students with extra homework assignments. Instead, it is a time for students to focus on their families and the interrelationships of a successful family. When we really get down to it, the basis of all of Judaism is centered around the family. Synagogues and day schools are both important but they take a secondary role to the importance of one’s family. The essence of Shabbat is the uniting of one’s family; completing homework assignments only serves to take away from the spirit of the day.

In the secular world this idea became a reality in the small town of Ridgewood, N.J. Parents were so concerned and involved with the success of their children that they loaded them down with every conceivable extracurricular activity. They became “hyper” parents, transporting their children to and from sports, music and dance activities, losing site that they were destroying the very essence and fiber of what a family should be. They finally recognized that they were working against themselves. “Let’s plan a night where nothing is planned,” said Marcia Marra the original organizer of this evening. The idea was “designed to let families do whatever they wanted.” This would be a time when families would focus solely on improving the dynamics of their family. No baseball games, no ballet lessons, no band or sports activities – just a time to relate to what is really important in life: loved ones and family.

The experiment was successful. People started looking forward to doing it again next year. It afforded families a chance to step back and appreciate the true blessings that they had in their transient existence. It made them realize that all those extracurricular activities that they provided their children, though important, pales to the importance of the time spent with family.

The Jewish people were given this gift every week. Those Jews who take advantage of this great treasure savor every minute of it. They focus on the enduring aspects of their lives: our Torah, our families, and our children. For the Jewish people, the experiment in Ridgewood was not something new.

For us it is called the Shabbat, an oasis in time.

Rabbi Mordechai Weiss

The Foundation Stone: Parshat Shoftim: Seeking Justice

Thursday, September 8th, 2016

{Originally posted to Rabbi Weinberg’s website, The Foundation Stone}

A woman, suffering serious financial hardship due to the dishonesty of outwardly observant friends who are supported by the community, declares her rejection of Torah beliefs.

A man who rightfully prides himself on his honesty leaves a hearing before a Rabbinical Court wondering where was justice.

A six-year-old girl, after overhearing her parents speak of the injustice of the UN sponsored Schabas Commission is terrified that we live in a world without justice.

 

“Righteousness, righteousness, shall you pursue (Deuteronomy 16:20),” teaches us that righteousness in a specific case is insufficient. We must seek to create an environment in which people expect justice.

 

Whether speaking to us of a king, a prophet, the desire for vengeance, war, or even an unsolved murder, the Torah insists that we create an environment in which that woman would feel confident that her community would provide justice.

 

We are obligated to insist on rabbinical courts that provide us with the security of justice so that man will never leave a religious court convinced he would have done better in a secular court.

 

We are told that our society must be so clearly just that a child will not shiver whenever she hears of the UN or the NY Times.

 

The Torah clearly holds community leaders responsible. The High Priest is held responsible when someone accidentally kills someone else (Numbers 35:28). City elders are responsible for the unsolved murder of a stranger (Deuteronomy 21:6). “But you shall remove the innocent blood from your midst when you do what is upright in the eyes of God (21:9).” What shall we do when we lose our sense of what is just and upright in the eyes of God?

 

“Restore our judges as in earliest times, and our counselors as at first; remove from us sorrow and groan; and speedily reign over us, You, God, alone, with kindness and compassion. Blessed are You, God, the King, Who loves righteousness and justice (Daily Prayer).” Rabbeinu Yonah understands this almost as a challenge of God: How can You expect us to follow Your ways if you abandon us to a world without justice (Berachot 19b on Rif)!

 

Our obligation is to create a strong sense of justice in our homes, schools and communities. “Righteousness, righteousness, shall you pursue,” in all we do, in every conversation, in every interaction with a child or stranger, with every word we speak to or of another. If we succeed in developing a strong sense of justice in our homes and communities, perhaps our prayer for God to restore justice will be justly heard and accepted.

 

Rabbi Simcha Weinberg

The Foundation Stone: A Sense Of Place

Thursday, September 1st, 2016

{Originally posted to Rabbi Weinberg’s website, The Foundation Stone}

A sense of place, especially God’s place, is frequently too far, inaccessible, and unreachable. The man, who lost his job and money, loses his place in his community, if not his home. A sick child stuck in a hospital away from her family loses her sense of place. The desperate mother who enters a synagogue for the first time in years to pray for that sick child will often feel out of place. A young man, leaving the safe walls of Yeshiva to work “out in the world,” will struggle to find his place.

A child, with whom parents are angry or who overhears parents arguing, a student in trouble at school, a couple experiencing tension, all feel out of place. Israeli families that live close to Gaza and are too terrified to return home, have lost their place. European Jews, experiencing the open anti-semitism on the streets, have lost their sense of place, as have we, post Tisha b’Av, when we mourned the historical destructions of Jerusalem. And yet, now, as we begin the approach to Rosh Hashana, hear God calling us home. What are those who have lost their home to do?

We can, of course, find our place in the abstract and ethereal. Yet, we are warned, “Beware for yourself lest you bring up your elevation offerings in any place that you see (Deuteronomy 12:13).” The Ha’amak Davar explains that one who seeks to elevate his relationship with God will strive to do so wherever he is, but must do so only in a place that is set aside for such elevation, such as the Temple, synagogue, or study hall. What are we to do when we cannot go to the Temple, and when we feel out of place in a synagogue or study hall?

This week’s portion, Re’ei, speaks of our need for a sense of place, how difficult it often is to find, and how we must protect others’ sense of place. It also guides us in how to manage the experience of ‘no place.’ It addresses the sanctity of the Land of Israel, private altars, and the proper place to eat sanctified foods, a place for the blood of slaughtered animals, the wayward city, and the Pilgrimage Festivals. We are taught to be sensitive to the poor person’s loss of place, and forbidden from eating a fish that carries its home, its place: shellfish.

Our experience of distance from the proper place is described in the laws of the Second Tithe that must be eaten in Jerusalem. “If the road will be too long for you, so that you cannot carry it [Second Tithe], because the place that God, Your Lord, will choose to place His name there is far from you, for God, your Lord, will have blessed you, then you may exchange it for money, wrap up the money in your hand, and go to the place that God, your Lord, will choose (14:24-25).”

There is a step in our service of God that encourages us to wrap up all the moments, insights and experiences that lack a proper place, so that, when found, we can bring them to the right place.

I recently read a quote from J.G. Ballard, “One of the things I took from my wartime experiences was that reality was a stage set. The comfortable day-to-day life, school, the home where one lives and all the rest of it, could be dismantled overnight.” I realized that when moving from one city to another, changing jobs, or while in extended stays in hospitals in Argentina and Germany, I have always sought to find my place in things that could not be dismantled. I find my place when I wrap myself in Tallit and Tefillin and pray, when sitting at a Shabbat table, and, most of all, when I study Torah. I then wrap up those experiences by incorporating them into my regular prayers, studies, and service. I hold on to those places inside of me, waiting for the opportunity to bring them to that place that God will choose for me. I carry those places inside of me, much as Noah grabbed a vine from the Garden of Eden to carry on the Ark and replant in the new world so that the Garden would remain a real place.

When Rosh Hashana begins to call out with the Elul Shofar blasts, its invitation to come home, I hear it in all those internal places I have managed to wrap up. As long as those places inside resonate to the call, I know that I will one day reach that place that will never be dismantled.

Chodesh Tov and Shabbat Shalom

 

Rabbi Simcha Weinberg

3 Justice Department Field Offices Wanted to Investigate The Clinton Foundation.

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2016

One of the greatest sins of the Obama administration has been the absolute destruction of the Department of Justice. Once the agency tasked with keeping American government honest, the DOJ has now become a designated political hit squad led by the White House. The latest evidence: three separate DOJ field offices wanted to fulfill the FBI’s request to investigate the Clinton Foundation, but the DOJ turned them down.

The Clinton Foundation has, of course, been under heavy fire for its significant coordination with the State Department. The Clintons used the Foundation as a slush fund; big donors were then granted special access to Hillary and her aides at the State Department.

And the DOJ doesn’t care.

Most Americans now shrug at such improprieties.

That’s because Barack Obama has hollowed out whatever moral core was left at the DOJ. As early as 2011, former DOJ attorney J. Christian Adams revealed that the DOJ had dumped its investigation into the Black Panthers for voter intimidation for racial reasons. According to Adams, “The end result when racial extremists dominate such a powerful division of federal law enforcement is, in a word, lawlessness.” Adams reported that the DOJ hierarchy implemented a “long campaign of political resistance to the Panther lawsuit that ultimately resulted in the dismissal of most of the case – after we had effectively won it.”

And of course, the DOJ, headed by Eric Holder was involved in corrupt dealings from Fast and Furious gunwalking to the racially-motivated investigations into the Trayvon Martin shooting and the Michael Brown shooting. The Holder DOJ spied on journalists from both the Associated Press and Fox News. They refused to prosecute the IRS’ Lois Lerner for clearly abusing her power in targeting conservative 501(c)3 applicants. In June 2012, Eric Holder was held in contempt of Congress, and Obama promptly defended him by utilizing executive privilege.

Now, Loretta Lynch’s DOJ has become the rightful heir to Holder’s dishonorable legacy. But that’s no surprise: when government is this big and this powerful, Democrats will use that power to their own advantage.

No wonder Hillary Clinton can sleep well at night. She knows that no matter what she does, her defenders at the DOJ will shield her from harm.

Ben Shapiro

Late Entertainer Joan Rivers Enriches Jewish Causes

Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

Iconic comedienne Joan Rivers generously left her enormous wealth to family, friends, and even members of her staff but she also made sure to leave money to charity groups as well, including several Jewish organizations.

Rivers, a proud Jewish woman, was caught on film this past July by TMZ, giving her opinion on about Israel’s counter terror Operation Protective Edge and the “killing of civilians” by the Israeli army in Gaza.

“Let me just tell you if New Jersey was firing rockets into New York we would wipe them out. If we heard they were digging tunnels from New Jersey to New York we would get rid of Jersey.”

Rivers, 81, lost her life in September due to cardiac arrest after a minor elective procedure on her vocal cords in a Manhattan clinic.

She named her only daughter, Melissa, as executor of her will and manager of her trust.

Rivers’ 2014 will was filed in New York State Surrogate’s Court and gave her daughter “the broadest and most absolute permissible direction” over some $150 million.

Among the Jewish organizations to whom she left bequests were the Simon Wiesenthal Center, Jewish Guild Healthcare, Jewish Guild for the Blind, and the Jewish Home and Hospital Foundation in Manhattan.

Feisty to the end, Rivers added a provision to her will that anyone who tries to challenge either the will or the trust would be disinherited.

 

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/late-entertainer-joan-rivers-enriches-jewish-causes/2014/12/10/

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