Archive for the ‘Israel’ Category

‘He Started!’ ‘Did Not!’ ‘Did Too!’

November 18, 2012

Tragically relevant animation by Nina Paley. You probably won’t need it, but her Reader’s Guide is here (scroll down).

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Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Dr. Romney Prescribes Government-Controlled Healthcare

August 1, 2012

Dr. Romney Prescribes Government-Controlled Healthcare

While visiting Israel, Republican presidential hopeful and skilled international statesman Mitt Romney praised that country’s healthcare policy:

“Do you realize what health care spending is as a percentage of the GDP in Israel? 8 percent. You spend 8 percent of GDP on health care. And you’re a pretty healthy nation. We spend 18 percent of our GDP on health care. 10 percentage points more. That gap, that 10 percent cost, let me compare that with the size of our military. Our military budget is 4 percent. …. We have to find ways, not just to provide health care to more people, but to find ways to finally manage our health care costs.”

Israel’s health success isn’t due to cultural differences or “the hand of Providence.”  It’s because the Israeli government mandates universal health insurance and actively limits medical costs. Mr. Romney instituted mandatory health insurance as governor of Massachusetts, calling it a matter of personal responsibility. So his flight from that successfully proven public healthcare measure is then “irresponsible,” right? Must be due to an opportunistic infection of political expediency. There’s a lot of that going around.

More:

“Romney praises health care in Israel, where research says ‘strong government influence’ has driven down costs,” Sarah Kliff, Washington Post blog

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Short Link: http://wp.me/p6sb6-dJa

Image (“Zei Gezunt, Mitt Romney!”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Occupy Cottage Cheese

November 1, 2011

Occupy Cottage Cheese

Hundreds of thousands of middle class Israelis began protesting a huge jump in dairy prices this summer, resulting in the largest demonstrations the country has ever seen. These soon became protests about widening economic inequalities in the small nation.

The protests are getting results. The Israeli cabinet has just approved a new tax plan reducing taxes on low-income wage earners and raising them for the rich and for corporations. Other new policies include cuts to the defense budget.

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Joe the Journo, Man of Mysteries

January 14, 2009

Joe the Journo, Man of Mysteries

“Joe the Plumber” is pumping out Gaza “news” for Americans. Media outrage over this calculated insult to capital-J “Journalism” has eclipsed U.S. reporting about the hundreds of civilian deaths, thousands of casualties, and mass destruction in Gaza.

“Joe” is really named Samuel J. Wurzelbacher and his plumbing and journalism credentials are identical — he has none. Media professionals angered over Joe’s assignment characterize it as buffoonery and a stunt. Deeper thinkers point out that the mainstream media have only themselves to blame; they paved Joe’s way with tacky tabloid stunts like anchoring the evening news from combat zones.

We’ve spent a century swimming in pseudo-events, dramatized press releases cooked up to spoon-feed the media maw. We do not live in an “information economy” but an “attention economy.” The media have cut out the middlemen and gone into the carnival biz themselves. Now TV weathermen report from storm-drenched parking lots, the Today Show is hosted from Antarctica and Greenland, and has-been accidental celebrities go to Gaza instead of  Hollywood Squares.

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Joe in Jerusalem

January 12, 2009

Joe in Jerusalem

Joe the Plumber,” the independent truth-seeker who is really Republican, is not named Joe, and is not a licensed plumber, has arrived in Jerusalem to pursue his new career, Combat Blogger.

Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher of Ohio, former Exhibition Blue-Collar Specimen of the McCain-Palin Carnival tour, successful author and country music singer, is now blogging for the crack Investigative Combat Unit of Pajamas Media, covering the Gaza conflict from mere miles away.  Mr. Wurzelbacher is such a skilled journalist that he could dispense with all that observing, researching, and interviewing stuff and tell the Israelis what they should be doing the minute  he stepped off the plane, earning the affectionate local nickname “Goyishe Kopf.”*

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Sandra Samuel, Righteous Among the Nations

December 2, 2008

Sandra Samuel, Righteous Among the Nations

Sandra Samuel landed at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion International Airport yesterday with toddler Moshe Holtzberg and the child’s grandparents. The plane also carried the bodies of Moshe’s parents and four other victims of the terrorist attacks on the Chabad House in Mumbai.

Ms. Samuel, 44, was an employee of Chabad House. Her duties included caring for Moshe and cooking under the supervision of Rabbis Leibish Teitelbaum and Bentzion Kruman, who were killed in the attack. Until a few days ago, the Indian citizen had never owned a passport.

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Jews and India

November 28, 2008

Jews and India

The ongoing terrorism and tragedy in India’s financial capital, the west coast port city of Mumbai, may motivate Americans to learn something about India, its visitors, and ethnic minorities.

Assorted facts:

Nariman House, site of recent terrorism, is named after Parsi social activist and politician Khurshed Framji Nariman, not a Jew. The structure at 5 Hormusji Street (opposite 4th Pasta Lane) in Colaba, Mumbai, was purchased in 2006 by Chabad-Lubavitch of Crown Heights in New York City’s Brooklyn, one of Orthodox Judaism’s Hasidic movements. The facility was run by Brooklynites Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg and his wife Rivka. At this time it is thought that the Holtzbergs are dead but their son Moshe, a toddler, was rescued by his nanny.

Visitors to the Mumbai Chabad House are largely young Israeli back-packers on their way to the beaches of Goa and other resorts and sightseeing destinations. While other building tenants include Jewish charities such as ORT, the identity of the Chabad House managers and their clients explains the chief value of the building to terrorists upset with Israel and America. The backpackers are either young Jewish Americans or young Israeli Jews, secular or conventionally-Orthodox, many on leave from their required military service in the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF). Ironically, young ultra-Orthodox Hasidim, yeshiva students, are exempt from IDF service, and yeshiva graduates may legally do outreach work in “Chabad Houses” as an alternative to military service. 

At any given time in today’s India, foreign Jewish tourists and Jewish high tech and financial services workers from the USA, Israel, and Europe greatly outnumber native-born Indian Jews.

There are about 5,000 native-born Jews among India’s billion people. 40 percent of India’s remaining native-born Jews are said to live in Thane, outside Mumbai, second-largest city in the world (population: 23 million).

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Mazel Tov! Florida Votes for Obama

November 6, 2008

Mazel Tov! Florida Votes for Obama

Bubbe! Zayde! you listened. What nakhes you gave us. You voted for Obama! We’re kvelling.

You should feel better about your vote now. Who is the first one President-Elect Obama asks to come work with him at the White House? Congressman Rahm Emanuel. His father (the doctor!), born in Jerusalem, was in the Irgun, the Etzel. There, see? We told you.

We’re flying down to see you on hannukah, but here’s a little something for your right now:

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McCain Funds PLO?

October 30, 2008

McCain Funds PLO?

John “Yahya” McCain

Senator John McCain has funded PLO terrorists! Well, okay, they’re not called “terrorists” anymore, otherwise Condi Rice couldn’t meet with them, but they’re called terrorists in South Florida, right? And Sarah Palin can see the Golan Heights from her house. She said:

It seems that there is yet another radical professor from the neighborhood who spent a lot of time with Barack Obama going back several years. This is important because his associate, Rashid Khalidi, he in addition to being a political ally of Barack Obama, he’s a former spokesperson for the Palestinian Liberation Organization.

Of course, Governor Palin can’t really pronounce “Khalidi.” And Dr. Rashid Khalidi, born in New York, is a professor in the History Department of Columbia University, where he holds the Edward Said Chair of Modern Arab Studies in the Middle East Institute of the School of International and Public Affairs. The late Dr. Edward Said, after whom the position is named, was a member of the Palestinian National Council or PNC for a few years, not the PLO, but, hey, close enough a week before the election.

And Dr. Khalidi taught at Chicago when Barack Obama did, their kids went ot the same school, and Obama was at the goodbye party when Khalidi left Chicago for his current job in New York. And Barack Obama took an undergrad literature course from Said himself. OMG!

But wait!

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EU Antichrist?

May 15, 2008

EU Antichrist?

Armageddon is imminent; the “head of the European Union” is the Antichrist. That’s what the authoritative Rev. John C. Hagee proclaimed. If Rev. Hagee meant the President of the European Commission, then send the children out of the room and gaze upon the face of the Antichrist:

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