The Blame Game

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7 Responses

  1. James says:

    Reb Rosenblum,

    Please think twice before writing articles on the US politics and the economic crisis. When you write articles from thousands of miles away on a subject about which you have no expertise you end up with this WSJ-style editorial that has no basis in fact. Aligning yourself with the Republican Party will not serve the interests of Torah.

  2. Menachem Lipkin says:

    And conversely (in response to James), I think it’s refreshing to see JR write about something other than religion for a change. Isn’t it a bit of a canard, in this day and age, to charge that geographical proximity is a pre-requisite for writing about politics? Rather than make such a blanket statement, make this interesting and tell us what you believe was factually erroneous about this piece.

  3. Lawrence M. Reisman says:

    What was factually erroneous?
    1. “Obama had free rein to do whatever he wanted with respect to the economy in his first two years in office.” Hardly. In the House, the Republicans could use the rules to delay things. In the Senate, there were Democrats who disagreed with him and deprived him of the 60 votes necessary to overcome the ever-present Republican filibuster.

    2. “The attribution of the state of the economy today to factors outside the President’s control will not bear scrutiny” The crises of the late 1990s were far less severe than anything afflicting Europe today. You didn’t have entire nations facing bankruptcy, nor the financial meltdown that occured.

    3. “Democrats bear more of the responsibility for the financial meltdown of 2008.” The Republican Congress pushed the Glass-Steagall repeal that allowed banks to gamble on the open market and Presidenet Clinton signed it. That’s equal responsibility. During the GW Bush adminstration, regulations were relaxed even more. When states such as Texas and New York tried to reign in predatory lending, the Bush administration stepped in and asserted the Federal Government’s right to regulate that area, and then did nothing. Furthermore, a shadow banking system emerged beyond the realm of any government scrutiny or regulation, and the Bush administration did nothing about that, just as today’s Republican party is fighting Wall Street’s battle to keep it from being regulated today. Parsing Gretchen Morgenson’s book won’t change any of that.

    Senator Moynihan used to say that you aren’t entitled to your own set of facts. Unfortunately, that’s what we have today.

  4. The Irony... says:

    Isn’t it funny that frum Jews have aligned themselves with Republicans?

    Why do frum Jews support Republicans? Answer: Because of liberal social policies — abortion, gay marriage, immorality in society, decadent Hollywood culture, their dislike for those who live off welfare and other handouts from the government…

    But frum Jews — especially kollel families (and chassidim) — LOVE Big Government. Their whole lifestyle is only possible because the government subsidizes and sustains them. If the government were to ever cut off (all) funding to the frum community (in America or Israel) the whole charedi yeshiva-kollel system would collapse, immediately.

    There is something seriously wrong when these son-in-laws “learning” in Lakewood, being supported by their father-in-law and the government, when they’re sitting at the Shabbos table when they start bashing liberals and Democrats as “socialists” etc… when they themselves are living off all these Big Government programs — Medicaid (socialized medicine), food stamps, Section 8 (subsidized housing), WIC etc… It is the modern welfare state that enables their lifestyle. Without liberal Big Government the charedim & the whole Lakewood kollel system would implode.

  5. Bob Miller says:

    Once large sectors of Orthodox Jewry depend too much on the largess of the government (with taxpayer money of course), it will be hard for us to criticize bad or even unconstitutional government policies and easy for us to praise them. Our failure to built an adequate Jewish base of support for our central institutions is already bearing fruit.

  6. DF says:

    The catcall of “hypocrisy” against orthodox Jews from the few remaining orthodox democrats holds no water. Kollel Jews are one small fraction of orthodox Jews. The majority of orthodox Jews are entrepenuers or working class business men, and have the same business reasons for voting GOP that everyone else has.

    Furthermore, the standard rationale of Kollel Jews is that “It it’s available, sure I’m going to take it.” Most would agree, for all the regular reasons, that our welfare society has gotten out of hand, and that it should be scaled back. But so long as Uncle Obama is handing out our money, they’re going to get in line, too, all the while thinking how silly it is that the government continues to do this. [I personally know many Americans living in Israel, that come back periodically to the US to get literally free money the government makes available, for some inexplicable reason. They cannot believe how insane it is, and realize our enemies are also getting funds the same way they are, but hey, if it’s out there, they’d be stupid to pass it up.] That may well be cynical, and we can debate all day long about the ills of the kollel lifestyle, but it’s not hypocrisy.

    Still further, even people on welfare are capable of grasping that a rising tide lifts all ships. There are untold numbers of Ameircans on unemployment who still vote GOP, despite democrat pandering that they would essentially hand out unemployment forever, because that’s not what the country needs. Dont think that Kollel Jews, inclduing their rabbinic leaders, dont grasp this.

    Finally, and most importantly, even if we accept arguendo only that the democrats economically are better for the orthodox, economics is but part of the matrix. As the commenter himself noted, democrats today stand for homosexual marriage, feminism, hollywood, and a host of other social ills. They are hardly the party of the unions that they were 50 years ago. Republicans are not necessarily saints, but they are far closer to sharing Jewish values, and only the most benighted baby boomer would claim otherwise. For most religious people, Jewish or not, values trumps economics, any day of the week.

  7. Bob Miller says:

    We have mainstream Orthodox Jewish organizations constantly looking for a way to support Jewish education via tax credits, forms of aid to achools and/or parents, etc. This support is necessary and fair from our point of view, but it does run the risk, if successful, of making Jewish education hostage to federal and state meddling with course content and hiring. Unlike other forms of assistance, this type is more favored by typical American Republicans than by Democrats.

    The good part of government support for parochial schools and parents, other than the obvious budgetary easing for us, is that it keeps large numbers of students from being indoctrinated in left-oriented, basically anti-religious government schools. Nowadays, I’d say that leftist indoctrination is the leading cause of antisemitism.

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