Shabbat shalom everyone!
It’s a beautiful fall weekend here in leafy New England! Perfect weather for me to jump in my new electric vehicle and head west for the UMass Amherst homecoming and halloween celebrations. Stepping back into Mr Peabody’s wayback machine, I vividly recall the UMass campus turning into one amazing costume party, replete with goons, goblins, ghosts and whatever characters were topical at that time. Through the haze of whatever recreational drugs I was using at the time, I remember meeting a news reporter interviewing a telephone pole that resembled Mike Dukakis, white-gowned doctors carrying trays of blood-drenched organs, and lots of folks resembling characters from “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” and at least one very large person trying their best to look like Divine, the 300 pound transvestite from John Waters’ “Pink Flamingos”. That was then.
Today, if you really want to be horrified, all you have to do is watch too much news, or listen to Republicans prattle on about runaway crime in urban areas. Regarding the latter, interesting to note that violent crime rates have gone up in Red states while many urban areas have seen a slight dip in those statistics. The stats are funky, and not consistent state to state, but the latest FBI stats show that the violent crime rate in Oklahoma was greater than the rate in New York and California! But what is WAY up is how much Fox is promoting and highlighting crime on their newscasts, thereby creating a false impression of what is actually happening in order to persuade voters that Democrats are responsible for a wave of new crime.
And it’s in this backdrop of bullshit that Paul Pelosi, Nancy’s husband, gets whacked by a MAGA whacko with a hammer in a home invasion. Madness takes it toll. While there has been an appropriate bi-partisan condemnation of this violent act, the moron who leads MAGA nation and who has been preaching violence against Nancy for years, our very own former disgraced President and orange turd, has yet to comment on the Pelosi incident. And while I find very little humor in this nasty news story, The Jew News Review was able to get this exclusive interview with the orange turd which you can watch via this link: click here for exclusive JNR interview.
Across the pond, however, there was a historic news story that our mainstream media seems to have ignored or just missed: the selection of Rishi Sunak to be the new United Kingdom Prime Minister. Andrew Sullivan, my favorite British-American blogger/writer, called this historic development, “The British Barack Obama” in his most recent Weekly Dish offering:
Britain never tolerated slavery on its own territory and even pioneered its abolition, (though was obviously deeply complicit in it elsewhere in the world). But it was defined by empire in the way that America was defined by slavery, and nothing defined that empire more than India. (Among the ironies, it was the first ethnic-minority prime minister, Benjamin Disraeli, who clinched the acquisition for Queen Victoria.)
And it is simply a remarkable fact that a grandson of that distant colonized country now runs the former colonial power. Imagine what Gandhi might have thought of that. Or Churchill for that matter. Sunak’s imperial heritage is actually wider: he has roots in Pakistan as well, and his grandparents lived in Tanzania (then Tanganyika) in British-run Africa, before they immigrated to the UK. His father, just like Obama’s, was born in Kenya.
So, congrats to Rishi, who gets my Mensch of the Week award. And good luck with turning the Tory mess around! I advise a “Jump to the Left”.
Turning to Jew News, I wish I could say there was some good news to share, but it’s getting harder to be a Jew around here, and even harder if you live in Russia. Thanks to morons like the orange turd and his pal Ye, there has been a significant uptick in antisemitic incidents, leading to this horrific picture from Los Angeles, inspired by Ye.
And the news out of Russia is even worse. Former chief rabbi of Moscow Pinchas Goldschmidt on Thursday called on Russian Jews to flee the country after a top Russian defense official assailed the Chabad-Lubavitch Hasidic movement as a supremacist cult. In an article for the government-owned Argumenty i Fakty weekly newspaper calling for the “desatanization” of Ukraine, assistant secretary of the Russian Security Council Aleksey Pavlov had claimed that the country was home to hundreds of neo-pagan cults, including the Chabad-Lubavitch sect.
“An attack by the Russian government against Chabad, as well as the attacks against the Jewish Agency for Israel, are antisemitic acts against all of us,” said Goldschmidt, who fled Russia earlier this year after working in the country for decades. “We reiterate our call to all of our brothers and sisters still remaining in Russia and able to leave the country to do so,” he said. Feels like a time warp to me.
And now, for the weekly roundup of other news for Jews:
- “A new era” marked by maritime deal with Lebanon – Israel and Lebanon’s landmark maritime border deal went into effect Thursday evening after a ceremony at a UN base near the border, ending years of conflict over the matter and repeated saber-rattling by the Hezbollah terror group. This is another indicator of a growing peace in the area, one of the positive outcomes of The Abraham Accords. Read the story
- The World Series? Invented by a Jewish guy: Of course The Forward found a Jewish angle to the World Series, now in process with the Philly’s taking game 1. Baseball has been America’s pastime for time immemorial. But it was only at the turn of the 20th century that its grand annual event, the World Series, came into being — all thanks to Barney Dreyfuss, the immigrant owner of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Dreyfuss conceived the series as a way to show off his team’s talents (and make more profit from them), and the Pirates won two World Series under his ownership. Alas, the Dreyfuss magic hasn’t quite extended to today’s Pirates: They finished last in their National League division. Read the story ➤
- 🎬 On culture: Anthony Hopkins plays an immigrant zayde from Ukraine who escaped the Holocaust in new movie – In “Armageddon Time,” which opens today Hopkins said the role allowed him to channel memories of his own Welsh grandfather. “He wanted me to go for lunch up to his house,” Hopkins recalled of a day in 1961. “I was too busy, too young. I said, ‘I’ve got to go now, see you soon.’ He turned around and waved and he was dead within two months. I always remember that. It’s a bit of a sword in my chest, that memory.” (AP, JTA)
- ✝️ Oy! To be a goy! – Nearly half of U.S. adults say America should be a “Christian nation,” according to a new Pew Research poll, but they hold differing opinions about what that phrase means. The same survey found a majority wants churches to stay out of politics and think that Supreme Court Justices should not allow their religious beliefs to influence their decision-making. (JTA)
- Tree of Life 4 years later – This week marks the four-year anniversary of the massacre at a synagogue in Pittsburgh, the deadliest antisemitic attack in American history. Mark Oppenheimer, a Jewish journalist whose family hails from Squirrel Hill, has written a book about how the community recovered after the massacre. HBO aired a documentary called ‘A Tree of Life’ last night. If you missed the debut, it’s available to stream now. Here’s the story of how the film was made. In a new OpEd tied to the anniversary, Jonathan Jacoby argues that it’s a mistake to equate right-wing and left-wing antisemitism. The editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette during the massacre on how he decided to print the words of the Mourner’s Kaddish — in Hebrew — on the front page.
- 🎤 A Trump-supporting heckler threw a beer can at comedian Ariel Elias during her show two weeks ago, but Elias is getting the last laugh. After video of the incident went viral, Elias was invited on Jimmy Kimmel Live, where she performed a five-minute set full of jokes about her Jewish upbringing in Kentucky. “I’m Jewish and from Kentucky,” she said to applause. “That’s an insane origin story.”(JTA)
- Another MAGA schmuck story – 🤦 Kari Lake, the Republican nominee for Arizona governor, has been criticized for allowing white nationalists and antisemites into her campaign. Last month she formed a group for Jewish voters, but that backfired when she placed an ad in The Jewish News of Greater Phoenix that falsely implied a prominent local Orthodox rabbi had endorsed her. (Jewish Insider)
That’s all folks! Enjoy the weekend, and remember, be careful out there! If you run into any ghosts, goblins, witches or other scary things, just ask them to join you in dancing to “The Time Warp”…..
It’s just a jump to the left
And then a step to the right
Put your hands on your hips
You bring your knees in tight
But it’s the pelvic thrust
That really drives you insane
Let’s do the Time Warp again
Let’s do the Time Warp again