Wednesday, January 02, 2008


Mind the Gap

The last time we had this much of a gap between the leaders of our Kehillos and Jewishdom at large, the response of Jewishdom was Hassidism. I wonder what will come of today's disconnect between a leadership largely enthrall of a political agenda that thinks it's so clever to use fundies as tools to gain "support" for Israel when in reality it is this leadership that has become tools (of the fundies) instead of serving the Kehillos that they claim and are supposed to serve?

P.S. -- I didn't know Prof. A-man was Reform. I thought he was a fellow Conservative Jew. Nu? He seems to follow the latest events in our movement better than his own ...

This reminds me of nothing so much as the lament, heard here on every single broadcast and cable channel and in Britain on the BBC and probably others that I don't get, that in the run up to the invasion of Iraq the expressed skepticism of the majority of people in these two soi disant democracies was not the wisdom of the people, Vox Populi..., and all, but a problem for the elites to overcome. And, it went without saying, if it couldn't be overcome to immediately become non-existent.

Well, as liberal religion has been relegated to a similar non-existence by the establishment propaganda machine, the majority of Jewish Americans, as evidenced by voting, political and social activities, polls, etc, are de facto just not there. Only what is convenient for the elites is allowed to exist in the Anglo-American system. From what I've read and heard it's not the same in many places. Even Israel with its enormous security problems seems to be able to allow people such as those Eric Alterman mentions to be heard. But they don't labor under the received Anglo-American tradition there.
Only what is convenient for the elites is allowed to exist in the Anglo-American system [...] [other places] don't labor under the received Anglo-American tradition there. - olvlzl

I'm sure Burke would argue that's how England and Americans maintain our liberal, republican system: because the elites are not threatened as threats to them simply are not allowed to exist.

I don't think it's quite limited to the Anglo-American system, though. As I suggested, this has happened in the Jewish community before. And the result was the Hassidic movement ... which began at the same time (and can be considered part of the same global movement) as the "Great Awakening" within England and the proto-USA: so I guess there are still connections to the Anglo-American experience.

Interestingly, when it happened before was during a period of entrenchment due to worsening persecution of the Jews. But what is causing the entrenchment here? Are things getting that bad here? And to the extent that they are getting worse, at least in my limited experience, we Jews have it more comfortable when the President is a Democrat.

Of course, one can argue that then the conservative infiltration of the leadership of our communities (it should be added that the communities in question are not religious but "secular") is all part of some self-re-enforcing way for the communities to get more power. I'd go on, but then I'd end up sounding like a Bircher, and we don't want that ;)
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