Cooperstown, Carousels And Torah Arks

Sunday, July 6th, 2008 All good Americans, at some point, ought to visit Cooperstown,  a most beautiful village rightfully known for baseball’s Hall of Fame, but if you’re planning a visit, consider an excursion to Cooperstown’s Fenimore Art Museum, about a mile north of the Hall.  

Potiphar’s Wife & The Spiritual

Friday, July 11th, 2008 History is written by the winners, and so is the Torah. Korach is depicted as a bad guy, when an honest reading of the last three-and-a-half books of the Torah suggest that Moses was a singularly uninspiring leader, a less poetic speaker than most any prophet that followed, and just begging for a challenge from Korach or anyone else. Whatever Korach’s failings, the tragedy of the Korach story is that a more suitable challenger to Moses was surely intimidated into silence by the heavy-handed obliteration of Korach.

No Big Bad Wolf In This Housing Crisis

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008 The housing crisis we keep hearing about is being reported almost entirely from the vantage point of speculators and sellers. But if you are a young couple starting out in life, seeking to buy your first apartment or home, why is it a crisis if the housing market is in a recession, prices dive and you can suddenly afford to buy?

Number One With A Bullet

Friday, July 18th, 2008 When Jews talk dictators, we’re talking the 1930s and ’40s, the great heyday of dictators. But now the great dictator action has shifted from Europe to the African, Asian and Arab world - yes, that “world” before whom we should feel ashamed because of how we treat prisoners and conduct foreign policy.

Hey George, Tell Me About Obama

Sunday, July 20th, 2008 Barack Hashem Obama’s followers still don’t get it, beside showing themselves to be as humorless as Satmar and easily the most paranoid and thin-skinned political operators since Richard Nixon.

Happy Birthday, Reuter

Monday, July 28th, 2008 Everyone one of us who cares about news is familiar with Reuters. But until I heard “The Writer’s Almanac” on NPR the other day, it never occurred to me that there was a man, Paul Reuter, who started it all, let alone that he was the son of a rabbi who converted to Christianity. You can hear Garrison Keillor tell you about the man by clicking here:

A Brief History of God’s Mailbox

Thursday, July 31st, 2008 An interesting footnote to Obama’s letter in the Kotel is not only how relatively new the custom is, beginning in the 1700s, but how dramatically the concept of the Kotel has changed in that time period.

The Invulnerable Amazing Grace

Sunday, June 1st, 2008 Not that long ago, we were talking with Sherwood Goffin (see story here), the wonderful chazzan at Lincoln Square Synagogue, about the problem of amateurs who, when leading services, freely staple niggunim (spiritual melodies), or beautiful popular Israeli songs, such as Erev Shel Shoshanim, or even Puff The Magic Dragon, to verses of the davening without any regard to how appropriate the particular tune might be to the verse.

RFK - 1968 And 1948

Wednesday, June 11th, 2008 Regarding the previous post, “Sympathy for the Devil,” here’s a good piece in The Boston Globe that looks at the increasing awareness - 40 years late - of Bobby Kennedy as America’s first victim of Palestinian terror.
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