. Z-Trek lightweight sport sandal . . Kosher Casual Dynamic .

Aug 27, 2015

Quote of the Day

I am happy that finally, after 3 years in the Knesset, Yair Lapid and Yesh Atid have an accomplishment  - that I will be a minister because of the Supreme Court. They have no accomplishments in housing, none in economics, no social accomplishments, and nothing else. The only thing they have is that they have now added a few shekels to my salary. I don't need their favors, but after the decision of the Council of Torah Sages, I respect it.

   -- Deputy Minister (soon-to-be-minister) of Health Yaakov Litzman


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Book Review: The Challenge of Jewish History

NOTE: I was not paid to review this book. It is an unbiased and objective review. If you have a book with Jewish or Israel related content and would like me to write a review, contact me for details of where to send me a review copy of the book.

Book Review: The Challenge of Jewish History, by Alexander Hool


The Challenge of Jewish History, by Alexander Hool, published by Mosaica Press, is a scholarly look at the discrepancy of the missing 168 years between the Jewish calendar and the chronology of the Western world, as well as other historical conflicts and discrepancies in the timelines of Jewish history.

The Challenge of Jewish History is truly a very scholarly analysis of dates, history and timelines, culling many sources to pick out the details of ancient kings and kingdoms from the Greek and Roman historical records, as well as Persian and Babylonian records, and , obviously, comparing them to the various Jewish and Talmudic sources..

I will honestly say that much of this book was well "over my head". I was dizzied by the dates and ancient kings, by the mathematical analyses of dates, and by all the evidence presented.

The Challenge of Jewish History is not a casual read. It is academic, it is serious, and it is complex. I have no idea how to evaluate if his theories are correct or not, but for someone interested in this aspect of Jewish history, the issues and theories presented by Hool should definitely be considered.


buy The Challenge of Jewish History on Amazon.com


NOTE: I was not paid to review this book. It is an unbiased and objective review. If you have a book with Jewish or Israel related content and would like me to write a review, contact me for details of where to send me a review copy of the book.




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Fee Parking in Bet Shemesh

A Guest Post by Dr. Harold Goldmeier

Parking on many commercial streets and in public parking lots in Bet Shemesh is no longer free.  A few business owners tell me they were never polled or consulted.  It seems neither neighborhood nor economic impact studies were done prior to the Mayor instituting the pay for parking program.  The story is told best in pictures.

The Ramat Bet Shemesh-A commercial center used to be a balagaan with cars. Many drivers double parked, took two spots for one car, cars were left parked for days, and employees of stores and offices in the RBS center captured the spots closest to shopping for themselves. Customers were forced to walk blocks from wherever they found parking. Drivers trying to capture an open parking spot threatened pedestrians. Pay for parking has made the RBS center a more safe place to walk, ride a bike, and park your car without fear of damage from drivers squeezing three cars into two spots.

Here's the problem. The reason fee for parking works so well is because people have an aversion to pay for parking. All ready in their cars they can shop in areas where parking is free. For example, go to Osher Aad for groceries and shop in the adjacent mall stores in the cavernous free lot.

Sales I estimate headed downward in double digits in RBS center stores, since pay for parking was introduced. People are losing their jobs and businesses are moving elsewhere. Neighboring residents have lost their parking on residential streets. Business will only worsen for RBS center shoppers and storeowners when the new RBS mall opens across the street. A parking lot is being built like at BIG with free parking for shoppers.

Finally, the litter, dirt, and deterioration of RBS-A center have exacerbated. This is not only the fault of the City administration.  Storeowners and landlords take no responsibility for cleaning the high traffic areas, planting flowers, repairing broken and filthy public benches, sprucing up the place to make shopping a more pleasant experience. If there is a local chamber of commerce it is a failure.

There is a field of study called City Planning that appears lacking as a resource to decision makers and stakeholders the rapidly growing City of Bet Shemesh. Residents and entrepreneurs are the ones who suffer the consequences. There are options to saving commercial city centers as an alternative to the "malling" of Bet Shemesh and slum-like environment.










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the protests against Gal Hirsch are why he should be Chief of Police

I have no comment on Gal Hirsch personally. I don't know much about him, other than the little I've read in the past couple of days... I do have a comment on his appointment as Chief of Police. My comment is not actually on his appointment, but on the appointment of somebody from outside the ranks of the police force.

Ever since Minister of Internal Security Gilad Erdan announced Gal Hirsch as his appointment for Chief of Police, people in the Israel Police have been criticizing the decision, calling for the appointment of someone from inside the police force and not appointing an outside, even from the ranks of the IDF.

The police force needs some serious reform. Nobody from within is going to do it. Those associated with the police who are speaking out against the appointment of Hirsch are doing so because they know that an insider will protect them, protect the force, as they perceive "protection" being from change, from exposure.

Right now the people of Israel need to be protected from the police. An outsider, hopefully Gal Hirsch, can change that. An insider almost definitely will not.


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Best Day of My Life | Hadassah Medical Center (video)

The Bone Marrow Transplantation Unit at Hadassah Ein Kerem treats those contending with cancer and supports their families. The people you see in this clip are not actors. They are doctors and nurses, patients fighting cancer and those who have fought in the past - those who are still with us and those who are not.
The dedication of the staff, the love of the families and the bravery of those undergoing treatment are a source of inspiration for us all.





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Five Ducks (video)

Hamas musicians have not had another big hit since their platinum hit "Tkof Taase Biguim". Not wanting to be remembered as just a one-hit wonder, the Hamas musicians keep trying, releasing new singles in the same genre... here is its latest attempt to recapture that musical success..

Five ducks is a song about the Gaza War from last summer and depicts IDF soldiers as ducks and claims five of them were captured in Gaza during Hamas's terror war last summer.




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Israel Tyme (Yalla!) (video)

a cute video recap made by Julian Edelman of his recent trip to Israel with fellow NFL players...





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Shimmy Engel - Givald | Official Music Video (video)








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The Shuk - D'ror Yikra (Call For Freedom) (video)








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Aug 26, 2015

PRESS RELEASE Chicago Rabbinical Council Helps Pass Kosher Milk Legislation

Last night I received the following press release from the CRC, and I thought it important and worth sharing. It seems like it implies serious ramifications as to the kashrut status of regular milk in the USA, especially where such a law is not in effect:

4 Elul 5775August 19, 2015 The Chicago Rabbinical Council2701 W. Howard St.Chicago, IL 60645(773) 465-3900 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE  For more information please contact: Rabbi Yona Reiss, Av Beis Din, at reiss.crc@crcweb.org On Thursday, August 6, after months of concerted effort by the leadership of the Chicago Rabbinical Council (cRc), Governor Bruce Rauner signed Senate Bill 1228 to amend the Grade A Pasteurized Milk and Milk Products Act, at the Thompson Center in downtown Chicago.  Senator Ira Silverstein, Rabbi Levi Mostofsky, Executive Director of cRc, and Rabbi Dr. Jerold Isenberg, President of cRc, attended the signing. The Grade A Pasteurized Milk and Milk Products Act had allowed the sale of milk from any hooved animal, “including milk from pigs and camels,” said Rabbi Sholem Fishbane, Kashrus Administrator of the Chicago Rabbinical Council. This allowed for the possibility that milk from a non-kosher animal could be added to cow’s milk, and it still would have been labeled as milk. The new bill requires that even the smallest amounts of milk from any animal source other than a cow not be sold unless it is labeled accordingly. The efforts began when a consumer read about the act online and alerted Rabbi Fishbane, who contacted Senator Silverstein. The Senator agreed to sponsor the legislation, and asked the cRc to join him in crafting an amended bill. In March, Rabbi Yona Reiss, Av Beth Din of the cRc, traveled to Springfield, Illinois with Senator Silverstein to lobby the Illinois General Assembly. Rabbi Reiss, a graduate of Yale law school, presented before the legislature, met with keyfigures, and crafted language in negotiation with other special interest lobbies in order to make sure to protect the Jewish consumers who rely on such legislation to be able to consume milk and milk products. “It is now a clear violation of law if milk from a non-kosher animal is sold without proper labeling,” explained Rabbi Reiss. “Rabbi Reiss did an outstanding job explaining the whole issue to the committee,” said Senator Silverstein. “He [Rabbi Reiss, himself] rewrote the bill several times.” “The cRc is protecting the Jewish community to make sure …milk is kosher. They did the right thing going to the Illinois General Assembly to resolve this issue,” said Senator Silverstein. Rabbi Fishbane noted that it is significant that it was a consumer who initially informed the cRc about the act. We “can service people better when consumers work together with us,” he said.
For more information, please contact the cRc at 773-250-5482. The Chicago Rabbinical Council (cRc) founded in 1932, is comprised of approximately 140 member rabbis from across the United States, Canada and Israel, and strives to convene a unified voice for the Orthodox Rabbinate of greater Chicago. The cRc provides a wide array of Jewish services including kosher certification, an internationally recognized Beth Din (Rabbinical court), along with community education, programming, and services.


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Support Henri's for staying closed on Shabbos

This is surprising. And shocking.

Henri's, a dairy restaurant chain with a branch in the Sarona Market in Tel Aviv, is being fined on a weekly basis to the tune of 3500nis because the owner wants to stay closed on Shabbos. The contract he signed when he took the location in this new mall stipulates that the shop must be open on Shabbos, as the owner of the mall wants the place to be in business all week long. The owner of Henri's claims that despite the contract there was an oral acceptance of the fact that they might not stay open on Shabbos, or at least it would be open for discussion. This branch of Henri's is also the only place in Sarona that has a hechsher because it is the only place closed on Shabbos.
source: Srugim and Kooker

Shocking that the law states businesses must be closed and can be fined for operating on Shabbos, while the mall owner forces the businesses to stay open on Shabbos. I wonder which fine is larger - the City/State or the mall, though the State is not that good about enforcing the Shabbos laws in most cities, so the mall is probably better about fining Henri's than the State is about fining Sarona.

I propose a suggestion that this restaurant deserves to be supported by people who respect the fact that he does not want to be forced to work on Shabbos. Go eat at Henri's, if you may, and tell him you support him remaining closed on Shabbos.

And the State should step up its enforcement of Sarona and fine it heavily for doing business on Shabbos. I don't know how this can be dealt with legally, considering he signed a contract. Maybe lawyers can weigh in - perhaps it is an illegal clause as it violates a State law or City ordinance. Even if at one point he intended to be open 7 days a week, perhaps he might change his mind at a later date, for business or personal reasons, and choose to close. People should not be forced to work on Shabbos in Israel.




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15 year old sefardi girl in Bnei Braq marries to get a green card into seminary

For a haredi sefardi girl in Israel today, getting into a haredi seminary is probably harder than getting a Green Card to live in the United States of America!

Actually it is very similar, according to a recent story, as reported on by Walla News and Kol Hazman.

According to the report, a 15 year old girl in Bnei Braq got engaged to an Ashkenazi man. In order to get accepted into seminary.

Reportedly she has already spent a year at home, rejected from all seminaries due to her being of sefardic lineage. While she was accepted into a seminary, it was supposedly a low quality one, whatever that means, and her family's rabbonim told them she shouldn't go to that school because it was not good.

An unnamed gadol the family consulted with recommended she start shidduchim.

The person speaking to the journalist said "she is a tzaddeikes of a girl. she does not even know what a computer is."

I like how that how we weigh the level of righteousness of a person nowadays.

Two points:
1. this is illegal. Both the rejection of her, assumnig the details reported are correct that it was for no apparent reason other than her being sefardi. And her getting married at this age (Walla says married, Kol Hazman says engaged) is illegal. I wonder if the "lower quality" sefardi seminary is worse for her spiritually than jail
2. neither of the articles say if after marrying the ashkenazi fellow did she then get accepted into the elite school of her choice, because now she is ashkanazi, or not.
3. In the USA there are federal agents that look for fraudulent marriages that are solely for the purpose of getting a green card. Here the police would need to look at her fraudulent marriage for the purpose of becoming ashkenaz.

Anyways, I wish them mazel tov and bracha, and with them a long and happy life together. Considering she won't even have a high school education I do wonder how she is going to support him.



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The division of dayyanim appointments

this article, describing a deal made for the appointment of new dayyanim to the batei din, made me wonder.

The relevant point is that an arrangement was reached by which the new appointments will be comprised of 33% asheknazi haredi dayyanim, 33% sefardi haredi dayyanim, and 33% dati leumi dayyanim.

Here are the garbled and partially redundant thoughts it caused me to wonder about:
1. that is 66% haredi and 33% dati leumi. why did the dati leumi agree to it?
2. why is it ok for the haredi side to distinguish as two separate groups the sefardi and ashkenazi dayyanim, thus claiming an equal portion of both, yet the dati leumi are happy to not make that distinction, thus ending with a clear majority for haredim over dati leumi?
3. are the haredi reps really so divisive and racist or is it successful tactics to get more dayyanim?
4. are the dati leumi living in Utopia? are they really so not-racist that they are willing to forgo such a big discrepancy just so as not to appear as being racially divisive?
5. why not divide it two ways? or four ways?


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Headline of the Day

Lion kills safari guide in Zimbabwe park where Cecil lived


  -- CNN

1. where is the outrage? all those people horrified and outraged that a hunter hunted and killed a lion, are they outraged that a lion killed a man who was not even a hunter?
2. Lions are kings of the jungle. Amazing beasts. They are also murderers. They destroy African villages, maul humans and kill babies, and even adults as we see in the story above. Let's not forget that. This lion was also a tracked lion, like Cecil.
3. The game park owners along with the country,  that promote these safaris and hunts make a lot of money off all these tourists and hunters. Cry me a river, as they say, that a hunter killed a freaking lion.


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Jimmy Kimmel: How Long...SpongeBob (video)

funny,,, but wait for the point of posting it....






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what the "haredi street" has to say about Litzman possibly becoming a minister (video)








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