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Jan 26th
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Rahm Emanuel two-faced on city pensions

On its face, Chicago’s municipal pension system is an integral part of the Chicago city government. The system is included in the city’s budget, it is directly funded by the city, and its various boards of trustees include city officials and mayoral appointees.

Yet when it comes to enforcing the city’s anti-corruption laws in advance of the Chicago’s closely watched 2015 municipal election, Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration is suddenly arguing that the pension funds are not part of the city government at all.

The counterintuitive declaration came last month from the mayor-appointed ethics commission, responding to Chicago aldermen’s request for an investigation of campaign contributions to Emanuel from the financial industry.

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View from Central Park

Like vertical shards of colored glass

When I first moved to Israel as a twenty something, I found myself one day preparing for an autumn holiday, wanting to make a fruit salad. The fruit salad I had always made was inspired by my mother’s recipe, strawberries, blueberries, pineapple and cantaloupe, with an orange citrus and mint sauce to go with it. I searched high and low for the fruits so I could make this delicious and refreshing fruit salad, but alas, there were none to be found.
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View From Denver

Wheel of fate

I AM AFRAID to ask their names, although I don’t know why. I am afraid of a lot of things. Truly it is irrational, for how can a person just one line above the catatonic hurt me? He stands there, quite tall, about 6’ 3” I’d say, sort of rotating slowly on the balls of his feet, moving neither forward nor backward, with this plastic grin on his face. It is different, extremely different, from the “plastic smile” we attribute to superficial people. This grin is engraved on his face as ...
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View from Central Park

The Boss of the Plains

The Boss of the PlainsYee-haw! It’s here. The National Western Stock Show. And last Thursday at noon, under a perfect blue Denver sky, with the charming and vintage silhouette of a pale gray Union Station and its orange lettering, its clock, and Mount Evans looming far behind it, towering over the crowd, the annual Stock Show parade hit Seventeenth Street.
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Reflections

The power of love

I watched him care for his wife until she passed away. He was very quiet, not prone to conversation, but always had a shy smile and comfortable way about him. I didn’t see him much after she died, except when he would head out of his driveway on his 10-speed bike for one of his long Sunday morning rides. Several years passed and I watched as my neighbor painted his porch, washed his truck and cut the oleander in his yard. It was a solitary life compared to mine, which was filled with the dema...
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Shabbat Times

JTA News

Rivlin addresses African-American leaders in New York visit

Ben Sales In the speech, Rivlin compared the establishment of Israel to the civil rights movement. ... [Link]

Israeli US envoy Dermer chided for boosting Netanyahu’s campaign

Ben Sales Dermer, as a state employee, is forbidden from publicly backing any election candidate. ... [Link]

Poll: Five out of six Palestinians say Israel may have aided Paris attacks

Ben Sales Fewer than nine percent of respondents blamed an increase in Islamic fundamentalism for the attacks. ... [Link]

Former Nazi loses Canadian citizenship

Ben Sales Helmut Oberlander was a member of a mobile death squad that is estimated to have murdered more than 23,000 people during World War II. ... [Link]

Survey: one-third of Germans equate Israeli and Nazi policies

Ben Sales Nearly half of Germans view Israel negatively. ... [Link]

Neo-Nazi Golden Dawn holds steady in Greek elections

Ben Sales Golden Dawn maintained its size despite a crackdown on its activities. ... [Link]

At Tu b’Shvat, bidding to save a beloved tree

mbrodsky At the New Year of the Trees, columnist Edmon J. Rodman is going all out to save a lemon tree planted before his twins’ bar mitzvah a dozen years ago. ... [Link]

For Cuban Jews, improved ties to U.S. may not resolve central challenges

Uriel Heilman Down to about 1,500 Jews from 15,000 in 1959, the Cuban Jewish community continues to see the exodus of its younger and most active members to Israel. ... [Link]

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