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Orthodox Come To Rubashkin’s Defense

As liberal groups hope bank fraud conviction leads to better business practices, Orthodox ones question zeal of prosecution.

11/18/2009
Associate Editor

Sholom Rubashkin, the manager of the now-infamous Agriprocessors kosher slaughterhouse in Iowa, has only completed one of two federal trials, and already — barring a successful appeal — he is looking at a life in prison.

The prospect of such severe punishment — for a man who many credit with making affordable kosher food available in previously underserved markets and for contributing generously to tzedakah, particularly to the Chabad community — has some Orthodox Jews complaining that the kosher meat tycoon is more victim than criminal.

At the same time, liberal Jewish groups that have been critical of the company’s practices — particularly its alleged mistreatment of workers — are hoping the conviction prompts better business practices in the kosher industry and Jewish nonprofit sector.

Day School Alternative Explored In Englewood

02/11/2009
Staff Writer
A group of Jewish parents in Bergen County whose application to establish a Hebrew-language charter school was recently turned down by the New Jersey School Board has started discussions with its local Board of Education for a Hebrew-language track in a public school.

Warren Buffett's Kosher Connection

06/30/2006
Staff Writer
The story of the Jewish student at Columbia University who wrote a letter a few years ago to Warren Buffett, asking for an internship at Berkshire Hathaway, the Omaha insurance and investment firm where Buffett is CEO, is already lore in parts of Omaha's small-but-close-knit Jewish community. Multi-billionaire Buffett receives many such missives, but he liked something about that letter. He offered the student an internship. And when Ian Jacobs, an Orthodox Jew from Toronto, finished his MBA at Columbia two years ago, Buffett hired him as a personal assistant.

Across The Great Divide

03/16/2007
Staff Writer
In a synagogue library in northern Westchester, a dozen senior citizens sit around a long table discussing current events. In a temple conference room on the Upper West Side, a young family talks about the tensions raised by a child’s serious illness. In the meeting room of a Long Island JCC, a group of recent widows share photographs and memories of their late husbands.

Kosher Sign Of The Times

08/27/2004
Staff Writer
In a sign of the growing influence of haredi consumers in the United States, Empire Kosher Poultry, regarded as the nation’s largest producer of kosher poultry, has added a second kashrut supervising agency, one more accepted by fervently Orthodox consumers. Empire, trying to increase its dwindling market share, this week announced that it will be offering poultry products with the KAJ label of the K’hal Adath Jeshurun supervising agency in addition to the Orthodox Union’s OU label, which Empire has carried for some 40 years.

New WJC Exec: Lauder To Head Restitution Effort

08/24/2007
Staff Writer
The new top leadership team of the embattled World Jewish Congress will head to Eastern Europe soon to re-energize stalled negotiations over Holocaust-era restitution payments, Michael Schneider, the group’s next secretary general, said this week. The political discussions will represent a return by the WJC, perceived as rudderless in recent years, to the activity that cemented its reputation as a representative of Jewish interests.

Arab Land-Ban Panned

07/27/2007
Staff Writer
American organizations that advocate equal rights for Arab residents of Israel were critical of a bill passed by the Knesset in an early stage last week that would limit the sale of Jewish National Fund land sales to Jews. The bill, approved in its first reading by a 64-16 vote, would bypass a 2004 court ruling and in effect bar the Israel Lands Authority from selling JNF land to Israeli Arabs.

The Y Gets Wired

03/10/2000
Staff Writer
Not long after the 92nd Street Y was rewired last year (a nearly $1 million job that involved threading fiber optic, copper wire and coaxial cables throughout the 11-story, 70-year-old building) Elie Wiesel delivered a lecture in the first-floor auditorium that was transmitted on closed circuit throughout the building.

Across The Great Divide

09/03/2008
Associate Editor
In a synagogue library in northern Westchester, a dozen senior citizens sit around a long table discussing current events. In a temple conference room on the Upper West Side, a young family talks about the tensions raised by a child’s serious illness. In the meeting room of a Long Island JCC, a group of recent widows share photographs and memories of their late husbands.

Jewish Democrats create “Rabbis for Health Insurance Reform”; will the Orthodox sign on?

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009 You can’t say the National Jewish Democratic Council (NJDC) isn’t doing its part for their party’s embattled  health care reform legislation  – or, as the Obama administration has rebranded it, health insurance reform.
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