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Jewish on Earth

What adults should learn from summer camp

HELLO muddah, hello faddah.  Here I am at — Camp Grenada . . . ”

Even when everything goes wrong, there’s nothing Allan Sherman’s singing camper wants more than to stay at camp. It’s where he and his fellow campers enjoy getting away from home — playing, making friends, learning Judaic practice and getting into mischief.

Simultaneously, campers are picking up subconscious information — about fair play, contributing to society and identifying with place, culture and religion — all within a context of assuming that adults will take good care of them.

Last Updated ( Friday, 12 November 2010 09:22 )

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It’s the economy, smarty

MAYBE it’s time to invoke a modern Jubilee on the global economy. Jubilee is the Leviticus concept that every 50 years, with a sounding of the shofar on Yom Kippur, debts are forgiven, slaves freed, and title to lands let go. Basically, every half century, we start over. As the Gulf of Mexico fills with oil, personal and national debts hit fabulous levels, incomes and ownership have so polarized that fewer than 20% of the world’s people control most of its resources, and nearly five billion...

Last Updated ( Friday, 12 November 2010 07:33 )

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The extraordinary vision of our sages

SOMETIMES our environmental situation reminds me of an old joke: The doctor asks his wary patient, “Do you want the good news or bad news?” Patient: “Gimme the good news first.” The doctor, “You’ve got 48 hours to live!” The patient cries, “That’s the good news? What’s the bad news?” Answers the Doc, “I just figured this out yesterday.”

Last Updated ( Friday, 12 November 2010 07:58 )

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Advantages from now and antiquity

WHEN the Israelites moved out of Egypt, they left the world’s dominant empire by simply crossing a “sea of reeds.”  Which route they took over which reed sea is still an open question, and it’s no mean feat to move 600,000 Israelites any distance. But the world was so “small” and undeveloped then that our ancestors were able to enter a wilderness by simply leaving Ramses or Pithom. While the Torah describes a 40-year odyssey of wandering, before bringing Moses to Mt. Pisgah, overloo...

Last Updated ( Friday, 12 November 2010 08:11 )

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Bal Tashchit and the great food circle of life

WHAT if you knew you could heal the world by throwing your food away — in the right place? It’s now possible for faith-based communities in about 30 of America’s larger urban areas to recycle and compost most or all of the food and packaging materials they generate, and create no-waste celebrations — which satisfies those key Biblical environmental principles, “don’t waste” (Leviticus) and steward the earth (Genesis). For most of human history, we have been grinding up the earth...

Last Updated ( Friday, 12 November 2010 08:15 )

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Shabbat Times

JTA News

Obama learns his lesson about Jewish toddlers

Ron Kampeas Or maybe Shabbat’s a lot more fun than the seder when you’re 4. ... [Link]

Obama: I have same high expectations of Israel as I do of U.S.

Ron Kampeas President Obama says his criticism of Israel is born of the high regard with which he holds Israel — and the expectation he has that Israel live up to the values it shares with the United States... [Link]

Lady Gaga accepts ADL award on behalf of her Born This Way Foundation

Gabe Friedman Pop star Lady Gaga accepted an award from the Anti-Defamation League on behalf of her nonprofit Born This Way Foundation. ... [Link]

World Bank: Gaza economy on ‘verge of collapse’

Gabe Friedman Gaza’s economy, stifled by the highest unemployment rate in the world, blockades, poor governance and a series of military conflicts, is headed towards a “collapse,” a new report by the World Ba... [Link]

Obama: I criticize Israel because I care about Israel

Ron Kampeas Defending Jews from anti-Semitism is necessarily entwined with criticizing some of Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians, President Barack Obama told a Jewish audience. ... [Link]

Dutch restaurant says it erased Israel from map for culinary reasons

Cnaan Liphshiz The owners of Rotterdam’s Le Souq say they replaced Israel with ‘Palestine’ on a map because of their passion for Palestinian food. ... [Link]

How to build an American shtetl — See: Bloomingburg, N.Y.

Uriel Heilman Shalom Lamm is developing a playbook for setting up an American shtetl. The problem is some of his new neighbors in Bloomingburg claim he used bribery, fraud and corruption of public officials to do s... [Link]

Switzerland defends funding for Israeli leftist group

Cnaan Liphshiz Breaking the Silence is scheduled to bring an exhibition to Zurich with federal, municipal support. ... [Link]

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