Orthodox Groups Protest Federal Decision On Contraception

01/26/2012 - 19:00

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Two Orthodox groups protested the Obama administration’s decision to require some religiously affiliated institutions to cover contraception as part of their employee health plans.

The Orthodox Union on Tuesday and Agudath Israel of America on Wednesday released statements criticizing the Jan. 20 announcement by the secretary of health and human services, Kathleen Sebelius.

Under the Affordable Care Act, employer-provided health insurance plans are required to include contraception and related “preventive” services for employees.

Florida GOP Jews Seen Up In Air As Gingrich Surges

Israel, Iran key issues in advance of next week’s crucial primary.
01/23/2012 - 19:00
Staff Writer

More than 500 Jewish Republicans have signed up to hear Newt Gingrich Friday in Delray Beach, Fla., as they seek to make up their minds ahead of Tuesday’s Florida Republican presidential primary.

“This is our coming out,” said Sid Dinerstein, chairman of the West Palm Beach Republican Party. “We’ve never had 500 of us in the same place. We are getting noisy and don’t care so much anymore that the liberals won’t be our friends unless we sell out our grandchildren and Israel.”

Mitt Romney, left, and Newt Gingrich at recent debate. getty images

Obama A Clear And Present Danger?

Assassination column an extreme example of Jews who see the president as sinister.
01/23/2012 - 19:00

When news outlets began reporting last Friday that the owner of the Atlanta Jewish Times had published an opinion column seemingly suggesting that Israel might be wise to assassinate President Barack Obama, condemnations rained from every corner of the organized Jewish community, and by Monday, the publisher announced that he was resigning his position and putting up his newspaper for sale.

Pastoral Education Edges Into Mainstream

As JTS adds clinical component, conference signifies greater Jewish awareness of new role for clergy.
01/16/2012 - 19:00
Jewish Week Correspondent

Rabbi Mychal Springer, director of the Center for Pastoral Education at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, recalls the days 20 years ago when she first began studying the field. Her first two clinical supervisors were both nuns, she says, reflecting the field’s roots in Christian theology.

A counseling session. JTS rabbinical students will now have 400 hours of such fieldwork.

Riverdale ‘Centrist’ Tapped As Obama Chief Of Staff

Hebrew Institute of Riverdale back bencher Jack Lew moves from OMB to White House.
01/09/2012 - 19:00
Staff Writer

A few years ago, Jack Lew, an unassuming back bencher at the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale who had served in two Democratic administrations in Washington, was invited to speak at the Modern Orthodox congregation in the Bronx.

In a speech that touched on his thoughts as an observant Jew in politics, he discussed the controversy over Jonathan Pollard, the Navy intelligence analyst who has served a life sentence since 1987 for spying for Israel.

Jack Lew, with President Obama at Monday’s announcement, is the first Orthodox Jew to run the White House. getty images

Jewish Republicans Cheered By Romney Romp

Fresh off New Hampshire win, frontrunner from Massachusetts seen as ‘kind of heimish.’
01/09/2012 - 19:00
Staff Writer

With the New Hampshire Republican presidential primary behind him, Mitt Romney, who garnered 40 percent in the Granite State,  is on to the South Carolina primary Jan. 21, where polls put him narrowly in the lead. Should he win in the face of a blistering $3.4 million negative ad campaign, courtesy of a super PAC backing Newt Gingrich, he would be poised to win in Florida Jan. 31 and become the first non-incumbent Republican presidential candidate to sweep the first four primaries.

And that would please Jewish Republicans, analysts say.

In First Primary Battleground, Jews Are Non-Factor

A Jewish Republican in New Hampshire seems to be a rare commodity.
01/02/2012 - 19:00
Assistant Managing Editor

As the nation’s political attention pivots from Iowa to New Hampshire this week, Rabbi Levi Krinsky, the emissary of Chabad Lubavitch in Manchester for the past 22 years, is feeling a little lonely.

Without a Democratic primary fight, the Jews of this fiercely independent state, who number about 10,000, aren’t being courted as heavily as they used to.

“This is the quietest [primary] I can remember,” he said in a phone interview Tuesday. Of the small Jewish population, even a smaller number are Republicans, judging by national trends.

Romney, Santorum Say They Would Vote For Paul If He Wins Nomination

01/02/2012 - 19:00

Two Republican presidential candidates said they would vote for Rep. Ron Paul if he wins the GOP nomination.

Mitt Romney, considered a frontrunner, and Rick Santorum, now undergoing a late surge in polls in Iowa, both told CNN in recent days that they would vote for Paul if he were to secure the nomination.

Pearl Of Wisdom

Father of slain WSJ reporter, is a leader in artificial intelligence
12/26/2011 - 19:00

A man arrives at an airport for a flight, and as he goes through security the agent asks some questions.

Did anyone help him pack his suitcase? What is the purpose of his trip? Is anyone accompanying him?

During the conversation, the agent enters answers and facial reactions into a computer pre-programmed with millions of pieces of information relating to the behavior of suspicious passengers.

Judea Pearl.

Six Degrees (No Bacon) Jewish Celebrity Roundup

Marguiles on parenting, Damon on Chanukah, Matisyahu goes after photographer.
12/26/2011 - 19:00

So apparently it stinks to be Julianna Marguiles’ kid.

“The Good Wife”  star says that she won’t allow her son, Kieran, who’s turning 4 next  month, get any birthday presents from his friends.  Terrible, right?

Well, according to, Marguiles “wants her young  son to understand that his life of wealth and privilege is extremely  unusual, so she makes him give a ton of his stuff away and doesn’t let  anyone buy him birthday presents.”

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