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Nov 26th
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Jewish on Earth

The promise we billions don’t have to keep

Is it ethical to burden future generations with the environmental mess this generation created?

From a Jewish perspective, the answer is “No.” We’re constantly reminded about passing this world from generation to generation (dor l’dor). It’s almost inconceivable that we’d dump our mess on our children to pay for and clean up.

Torah and Talmud are packed with admonitions and commandments to take responsibility for our present actions, that we may guarantee clean relationships and a healthy world for future generations.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 22 March 2012 10:42 )


Food-rich blessings, over-eating curse

The harvest festival of Sukkot has passed and the feasting holidays of Thanksgiving and Chanukah approach. Let’s thank our farming and herding ancestors for helping make our civilization possible. And let’s thank our current farmers and ranchers for helping keep it so. Yes, 10,000-odd years ago in the Fertile Crescent, our forebears began seriously tending plants, taming animals and storing surplus food, and concentrating so many calories in one place that they could feed 10 to 100 times mo...

Last Updated ( Thursday, 22 March 2012 10:41 )


High Holidays in Eden

Jews have been stressing about “G-d’s will” vs. free will, and the ideal vs. the pragmatic ever since G-d expelled humans from Eden for eating a Tree of Knowledge apple. Now here come the High Holidays again, when we take stock of our past year’s performance, and pray that we’ll be inscribed in The Book of Life for a good new year. I think we’ve got a shot at it, if we play our environmental cards right. Let us compare G-d and Eden to planet Earth. Humans have eaten the apple, gott...

Last Updated ( Thursday, 22 March 2012 10:41 )


The new earth

IN summer of 2006, I asked a “highly placed Israeli source” this question: “What’s with Olmert?!”  New Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was botching the Lebanon war, relations with the territories and his Kadima paty’s coalition, and facing criminal indictment. The source’s resigned reply:  “We work with what we’ve got.” That reply sounded both realistic and defeatist. Realistically, in a  given situation, we each do the best we can with what we’ve got.  If we believe this i...

Last Updated ( Thursday, 22 March 2012 10:42 )


The people of sustainable impact

ON July 4 last year, we were huddling around fires to keep warm in Seattle. This year, we’ve had 78 minutes of summer so far (i.e., temperatures over 80 degrees).  Meanwhile, in Washington, DC, where politicians are wasting taxpayer money fighting over a phony ”debt crisis” and trying to eliminate the Clean Air and Water Acts, EPA, and conservation and alternative energy programs, they’re sweltering under record waves of heat and humidity. Is climate change (CC) afoot, or are these we...

Last Updated ( Thursday, 18 August 2011 02:55 )

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Shabbat Times

JTA News

Argentinean rabbi tapped as government minister

Marcy Oster Rabbi Sergio Bergman, who will start his new position on December 10 when the new government is sworn in, is believed to be the only rabbi serving as a government minister outside of Israel. ... [Link]

Despite Jewish security concerns, new kosher supermarket opens in Berlin

Marcy Oster The store’s owners are optimistic for its success, despite security concerns and the recent European Union decision to require relabeling of products made in the West Bank and Golan Heights, ... [Link]

Anne Frank’s diary to be published online in challenge to copyright

Julie Wiener Plans to publish Anne Frank’s diary online in January are challenges to the foundation that owns the rights to the book and is seeking to extend its copyright by naming her father, Otto, a co-au... [Link]

Meet Oren Hazan, Israel’s most scandalous lawmaker

Ben Sales Allegations against the freshman lawmaker have run the gamut from drugs to sex to bigotry. ... [Link]

How the Chabad rebbe helped create food stamps, and other Jewish Medal of Freedom stories

Ron Kampeas While Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson didn’t receive any credit at the Presidential Medal of Freedom ceremony, Judaism got plenty of love. ... [Link]

For Jimmy Carter’s chief of staff, being Jewish was a family secret

Gabrielle Birkner For Kathleen Jordan, finishing the memoir of her late father, Hamilton Jordan, was a labor of love, a way to process her grief and an exercise in embracing her own Southern identity. ... [Link]

Met Council’s Rapfogel released to minimum-security prison with view of Central Park

Julie Wiener For 10 days Rapfogel will be restricted to a minimum-security facility across the street from Central Park, then will be allowed to leave during the day to go to work. ... [Link]

Bishops in England and Wales call for Vatican to revise liturgy concerning Jews

Julie Wiener The chairman of the bishops’ Committee for Catholic-Jewish Relations said the current wording of the prayer has caused “great confusion and upset in the Jewish community.” ... [Link]

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