Cheers And Fears: The Debate Over Kiddush Clubs

A recent opinion piece in The Jewish Week by three doctors expressing alarm about so-called kiddush clubs, a phenomenon mostly found in Modern Orthodox shuls, was bound to generate some controversy.

Check next week’s letters page for some pro and con responses.

Whether or not rabbis should allow shul members to step out of services, usually during the Torah reading, to enjoy a private kiddush of mostly liquor and some snacks is a question that probably dates back through generations.

The Fair On The Edge Of Town

Wednesday, July 8th, 2009 Check out this Garrison Keillor essay on state fairs.   The best county fair less than 75 miles from New York, the Orange County Fair, is coming July 23-August 2.   A small rural fair, but worth your curiosity, comes and goes too quickly in Sullivan County’s Grahamsville, August 14-16.  

Obama administration a disappointment to military church-state leader

The leading activist in the fight to make the U.S. military live up to constitutional  church-state protections is glad the Pentagon has decided not to allow an Air Force “flyover” as part  the annual God and Country Festival in Nampa, Idaho – the first time military authorities have denied the sponsoring group’s request  in 42 years.

Why I always advise little children: Please kids, whatever you do, don’t drink in Mexican bars

Monday, July 6th, 2009 Here’s why. Are you wondering what this has to do with The Jewish Week? It’s this: Some of us read every story, looking for the Jewish angle. Did you find it?

The Palin Factor and the Jews

The Sarah Palin political soap opera took its strangest twist on Friday when the 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee and possible 2012 presidential contender announced she was resigning as Alaska's governor before the end of her first term. What's the likely impact on Jewish politics?  It's hard to tell, although that won't stop wild speculation in political circles.

Obama angst spreading, Jewish leadership gap widening

A while back I wrote a story suggesting the Obama administration is highly confident it can push Israel on the issue of Jewish settlements without risking a big political backlash from Jewish voters. That story ignited a flurry of calls and emails from readers disagreeing with me, many from Jewish leadership types, and I had to concede they were right, up to a point: there is a spreading feeling of anxiety about Obama policies in the  circles in which these responders move.

Minnesota Supremes Rule: Franken wins, Coleman's toast

A Caption Can Be ENtered Upon Selection of an ImageEight months after Minnesota voters went to the polls, the state is about to get a new senator. And it’s not the old one – Norm Coleman, the Republican whose last appeal of the razor-thin election was rejected by the Minnesota Supreme Court on Tuesday in a unanimous decision.

A lower court ruled that Democrat Al Franken, the former Saturday Night Live comic, won the election by 312 votes, but Coleman continued to argue that an additional 4000 absentee ballots should be counted.

Jewish Dems gloating: No Jewish Republicans in the Senate.

In the old-news-presented-as-new department, the National Jewish Democratic Council (NJDC) is beside itself with joy because now, officially, there isn’t a single Jewish Republican in the Senate – the first time, the group notes, since 1957, when New York’s Jacob Javits was sworn in (read the group’s blog post here),

Did we learn the right lessons from the Madoff ripoff?

Did we learn the real lessons of the Madoff ripoff? So Ponzi king Bernie Madoff has been sentenced to 150 years, and the blogosphere is aflame with the outrage and anguish of the victims of this record-breaking swindler. While significant recovery seems unlikely for most, there’s a degree of satisfaction that he didn’t get away with the usual wrist-slapping white collar sentence. But to me some of the case’s most important questions remain unanswered.
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