Shabbat shalom everyone! A quick shout out to the JNR, as we officially turned two years old last week. In honor of said anniversary, I will be putting together another order for the ever popular JNR swag. So, in case you are new to the forum, or missed the last order, fear not! There are always second chances in life and in JNR swag! More details to follow next week!
It’s a dreary and soggy morning here in Sharon, MA, but I won’t let the rainy weather dampen my sunny disposition. I started out feeling that some Steely Dan “Aja” on the turntable might match my mood, then on second thought, switched to The Eagles to try and hopefully “loosen my load”, as I continue to worry about the fate of our nation’s democracy at the hands of the domestic terrorists we historically and respectfully called “Republicans”. While the lame stream media continues to focus on the rifts within the Democratic party over the infrastructure sausage making, (as if there could ever be any unanimity on such sweeping legislation), the only thing Republicans want to talk about are contrived culture wars, and they seem hell bent on turning our democracy into something resembling Hungarian autocratic goulash (or should that be “ghoul-ash”?) I am confident the infrastructure sausage will be made, and it will probably taste pretty good, but hopefully not too rich to cause economic heartburn. Interest rates may be low now, but I am not one of those liberals who believes we should continue to spend trillions without getting the approval of the generations that follow who will have to pick up the tab. I would prefer we cancel all the human infrastructure programs if we could replace them with just one – universal health care – but that is politically impossible in this crazy F’d up country. End rant here.
On the Jew news front, nothing alarming jumped out at me this week. Israel announced more settlements, drawing the wrath of just about everyone interested in a two-state solution. The Knesset passed their own infrastructure bill which includes a new airport and lots of other transportation projects. And they continue to posture and spend defense funds to paint the Iranians as the boogey-people who constitute an existential threat to the jewish state. So, as I stated, nothing new or notable this week. Nevertheless, here is a sampling of some Jew news you may find interesting, entertaining, or both!
- “Jewglers” united in protest? “Jewglers” is one of many employee groups at Google, where there are also “Gayglers” (for LGBTQ+ employees) and “Greyglers” (for older ones, like me). The Jewglers’ 2,800 Jewish members mostly use its listserv to seek travel advice, share recipes and plan the company Hanukkah party. But over the past year, Jewish employees of the search giant have split as Jews in so many communities have, over politics surrounding Israel. An open letter published this month by Google and Amazon employees demanded the two companies withdraw a $1.2 billion cloud computing contract with Israel. The day after the letter was made public, Google announced a $5.8 million commitment to combat antisemitism online. Frankly, this is just another example of how Israel’s Palestinian problem divides the community. But I love the “Jewglers” name, and included the story just for that reason alone. Enjoy the details here.
- The “Last Jew in Afghanistan” follow up story – You read about it here first in the JNR, now you can read the full story of the dramatic rescue of this knucklehead who finally gave his ex-wife of 20 years a gett (divorce) in exchange for his dramatic rescue by a minivan with gunshots sounding in the distance. To read the full story, click here.
- Nazi Landlords in Maine? – 🏠 Not all is happy in “Vacationland” as this week landlords in Maine evicted a Black Jewish man for placing a mezuzah by his front door, an apparent violation of the lease. The Maine Human Rights Commission is slated to discuss the case Nov. 8, after an investigator found it likely a case of discrimination. Read all about here.(News Center Maine)
- Meta? “This Zucks” should have been the new name for Facebook! Thanks to Kara Swisher for that name idea, but it looks like the shitheads at FB have landed on Meta, which does not translate well in Hebrew. Apparently the closest translation is the feminine form for “is dead”. Some business folks think the Google-like name change is one way to insulate Zuck from doing a perp walk. The tech giant does provide an important role in the world, if they would only act more responsibly and stop amplifying bad things, I might say something nice about them. But until then, The Zuck is dead to me, no matter how many Jewish charities he supports. For more on the story, click here.
- World Series Schmucks: Rabbis supporting “The Chop”? The tomahawk Chop — often called “the chop” — is a back-and-forth motion of the arm, accompanied by a sing-song war chant, and often cued by stadium music and a drumbeat. Native Americans have characterized it as both bigoted and an insensitive appropriation of their culture and all the more offensive in Georgia, where the U.S. government in the 19th century forced thousands of Native Americans off their land and onto the Trail of Tears — for many, a death march. But not so for Rabbi Ilan Feldman, head of Beth Jacob, an Orthodox synagogue in Atlanta, grew up listening to baseball games on a transistor radio and has been going to Braves games for decades. He said he would do the tomahawk chop “every time I have the chance.”“The whole point of the tomahawk Chop is that a Brave is a courageous warrior for a good cause,” Feldman said, “and therefore it’s honoring Braves, not dishonoring them. It’s saying ‘I want to be like a Brave.’” I don’t know about all of you, but despite my trying to resist the PC knee jerk reaction to this disgusting Atlanta fan chant, I think the custom sucks and should be banished. But despite that, I am hoping the Atlanta Cowards prevail over the Houston cheaters. For more on this story, click here.
That’s all I have this week. A big BOO! to all of you, and a reminder to be careful out there!