Sunday, October 23, 2005

T-Um UPDATE/ ABBAS and MIERS 10/23/05

The RestoreTorah Umadda campaign is picking up steam. The NJ Voice and Opinion ran a large front page story that is mailed to 16,000 orthodox/traditional homes.This followed a front page 5 Towns Jewish Times article.In addition Commentator the Yeshiva College student paper had a page one story,and I have been invited to write an op-ed for the next edition.
Ira Rifkin of the Baltimore Jewish paper called erev Shabbat and he is writing a story for that paper and the Jerusalem Report.
In a few weeks when the students are back in school,and I return from the Jewish Agency meeting in Jerusalem we will evaluate where we are and plan for the future Thia could include a real web site dedicated to the issue that would invite students and faculty as well as alumni to participate. It has been suggested we start selling baseball caps (how ironic ) and sweatshirts with the RESTORE TORAH UMADDA label on it ..stay tuned.

Jeffrey Berkowitz who is a Special Asst to Pres Bush for Jewish Affairs, e-mailed me some commentary on the Bush-Abbas meeting.
It would appear that Abbas did get some leeway to allow Hamas into the political process,but the President was not in favor of this move,absent the surrender of all weapons and denouncing terrorism.No one believes Abbas can succeed He was strongly urged to exert leadership and that the incorporation of active terrorists into the political process is not really possible.
I have spoken to some Uzi Landau people prior to his US trip last week and they are exhibiting an increased confidence that he could beat Bibi.

It is sad to see Ms Miers floundering.As much as I favor having a conservative oriented philosophy,all of us should demand intellectual superiority for our High Court nominees.This is not a place for cronyism.Personally,the issues of affirmative action and assisted suicide as well as the influence of foreign courts are more important than Roe v Wade which is really settled law.At most the Court could be involved in late term abortions, and parental notification.It is hard to believe that the court would throw out our current laws. The nomination should be withdrawn and a well seasoned individual with a record to examine and defend should be appointed.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Gmar Tov /Thanks for your encouragement/ Condi is not a candidate

I wish to thank all those who have called me in support of the Torah U Madda campaign. The Yeshiva College Student newspaper had a major story as well as an op-ed and two letters to the editor on the topic. They have invited me to write an op-ed for the post –Succoth edition
Next week the Jewish Voice and Opinion in Englewood-Teaneck will have a page one story on this issue. In addition both E-mail response lines are growing with signatures

A gmar chatimah tovah to all of klal yisrael

One political thought before the fast
The talk of a Condi Rice Presidential race againt Hillary (or anyone else) IS NONSENSE
She would have to resign at least two years before ’08 to campaign. She has no political base and the White House has its own problems.
Except for Dwight Eisenhower we have never elected a non-politician as Chief Executive.
Sen Jon Kyl (R-Az) informed me that if he passes a physical exam Sen John McCain,will announce in “06. He is an old friend and Vietnam comrade. (he had a melanoma a few years ago )Don’t forget Gov Bush of Florida who speaks perfect Spanish.Also Juliani and Pataki.
From where I sit the Democratic nomination is Hillary’s to lose. I just invited her to join us Chol Hamoed Pesach to speak at the old Granit Hotel where I serve as a scholar-in-residence. No I’m not turning into a liberal Democrat, but she is still one of the most important figures in the US Senate

Friday, October 07, 2005

KUDOS to JULIUS BERMAN/ Our new nominee/Abbas to the White House 10/7/05

Over the last 10 days Yeshiva University has run a number of ads in the Jewish Week and Jewish Press.These include a picture of a group of Rabbi participants in Rabbi Branders new program, and an ad for a combined lecture in the Jewish Center by Rabbi J .J. Schachter .
In only one ad for RIETS was the Torah Umadda emblem present while all the rest had the non-sectarian flames. This is due to the insisistence of RIETS Board Chairman Julius Berman..He is to be commended for standing up for principle.
I urge the public to apply pressure on the Board Chairmen of the various divisions that deal with Torah issues. to stand up and show leadership.

Chairman of the entire University

Joshua Muss
Chairman Yeshiva College

Marjorie Diener Blenden
Chairman Stern College for Women

Mordecai D. Katz
Chairman Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies

Moshel J Straus
Chairman Azrieli Graduate School of Jewish Education and Administration

Erica Jesselson
Chair YU MUSEUM (affiliate)

As well as the two High Schools.
Searching the web site today the only place one can see the old emblem is at the H.S. site.

Even if the Torah Umadda logo were put back into these schools advertisements, it in no way relieves the Yeshiva from restoring it to the University .
I again urge you to make the petition drive a success.

I am deeply disappointed by the choice of Harriet Miers for the Supreme Court.With 55 Republicans and a mandate from the electorate during the last election, we get not a Scalia or a Thomas ,but a big question mark that smells from cronyism.
Her claim to fame is a conversion to religion , a $ 150 campaign check to Cong Henry Hydes campaign as well as her boyfriends assurances that she is really a conservative. How sad for America.I would rather a person with a record be voted down because of his/her views than settle for a non-personality with no record.

On that same track, I believe the President is making a mistake by inviting Mahmoud Abbas to the White House. Since meeting with the President, he has not carried out a single positive step toward peace. He has not put an end to incitement, or exhibited any control over Hamas,Islamic Jihad etc. As long as these groups are armed, and he has a no confidence vote around his neck from the PA Parliament,what is the purpose of propping up such a weak ineffectual leader?

Allow me to wish a GMAR CHATIMAH TOVA TO ALL