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▪ US’s ‘Great Recession’ is boon for aliya
â–ª The oldest synagogue in Greece
â–ª How To Get My Man Back After An Argument ef=”http://www.jta.org/news/article/2010/05/27/2739366/in-the-shadow-of-nazi-classic-jew-suess-directors-kin-speak-their-minds”>In the shadow of Nazi classic, director’s kin speak their minds
â–ª Conversion bill still troubles U.S. Jewish leaders
â–ª SALT Thursday
▪ Obama, Israel & American Jews: The Challenge—A Symposium
â–ª Jamaican hip-hopper turned Orthodox Jew: A candid talk with Yoseph Robinson
â–ª Israel’s ultra-Orthodox turn to consumer clout
â–ª Ask the Rabbi: On being fruitful (I’m hashkafically against contraception during early marriage)
▪ Rav Belsky’s stance on the kashrus of worms in flesh of fish
â–ª Glatt kosher, pasture-raised meat
â–ª SALT Wednesday
â–ª The value of the humanities: David Brooks
â–ª The value of the humanities: Stanley Fish
â–ª Chief Rabbi Metzger: ‘No mourning Gaza exit’
â–ª State to blame for lack of haredim in workforce
â–ª Quoting biblical verses, man wins a million shekels
â–ª Rabbis without borders
â–ª R. Yisroel Belsky’s teshuvah about worms in fish
â–ª SALT Tuesday
â–ª Boxer with OU tattoo defeats rabbinical student
â–ª At Maimonides 38% of women giving birth are obese
â–ª Genetics & the Jews
â–ª Chosen, but not genius (reminiscent of this post, without the politics)
â–ª SALT Monday

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How To Get My Man Back After An Argument


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Gil Student

Rabbi Gil Student is the founder, publisher and editor-in-chief of Torah Musings.

The opinions and facts here are presented solely by the author. Torah Musings assumes no responsibility for them. Please address religious questions to your rabbi.

1 Response

  1. Hirhurim says:

    Nachum 06/07/2010 10:36 AM
    Ah, Michael Chabon joins the ranks of Beinart’s select group of enlightened ones, not that his last novel didn’t prove it already.

    OU tattoo? Where?
    nonumous 06/07/2010 10:57 AM
    Not bad. You got OU and Student in the headline.
    hirhurim 06/07/2010 11:03 AM in reply to Nachum
    See the video: http://j.mp/1o2YLX
    Lion of Zion 06/07/2010 11:09 AM
    regarding the article on obesity: why is too much to expect our schools to serve healthy food/snacks and institute proper phys ed programs?
    hirhurim 06/07/2010 11:13 AM in reply to Lion of Zion
    It will only happen when parents demand it.
    Lion of Zion 06/07/2010 11:30 AM in reply to hirhurim
    a) otherwise we shouldn’t expect our schools to have our kids’ best interests in mind?
    b) how many examples can you think of where your kids’ schools acquiesed to parents’ demands rather than the other way around?

    what about halakhah and boxing for sport?
    Michael_Rogovin 06/07/2010 02:28 PM in reply to hirhurim
    Not even then. I find most schools resistant to parent input (unless it is the bankrolling parents talking). They may make small changes (removing candy machines, replacing soda with snapple (which is not much better), but they will say that the food service provider would charge 2x or 3x the current cost if they had to make healthy. 5x if the healthy food has to be edible and desirable by the students. They are also cutting back on organized physical exercise (interferes with classroom time, you know, bitul Torah). Most principals tell me that the parents demand more homework and more emphasis on academics (to get their kids into the best schools). Other than to complain about this or that, few talk about these other issues.

    In a similar vein of ‘they don’t care’ I am also amazed that for $16,000 a year, my children are shown commercial animated films (e.g. Disney, Pixar or Dreamworks) at various times rather than films with some educational value (of which there are many that are entertaining and which the kids would not otherwise see on netflix or Blockbuster). some of the films shown were actually inappropriate (one school in NY actually showed the Mike Meyers Cat in the Hat to 1st graders — a bad film in general, aside from several inappropriate lines/scenes).
    Baruch Alster 06/07/2010 02:43 PM
    I think you should mention the passing of R. Mordechai Eliyahu this afternoon in Jerusalem. See e.g. http://www.jpost.com/Israel/Article.aspx?ID=177746
    thanbo 06/07/2010 03:28 PM in reply to Baruch Alster
    We used R’ Eliyahu’s niddah book when we learned about niddah, taught by R’ Marc (Holliswood, no, that’s not his name, but it’s his shul, he was the #3 guy at LSS at the time, lemme look it up on Google, that’s it,) Penner. Sorry, middle moment (I’m not old enough for it to be a “senior moment”).
    Steve Brizel 06/07/2010 05:57 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    Any comment re the story re Rubashkin’s acquittal on child labor charges?
    Steve Brizel 06/07/2010 07:43 PM
    FWIW, the AP item on Rubashkin used the term that he was found “not guilty” of all of the alleged childlabor violations, Would the atorneys on this blog agree that the proper terminology is” acquitted” ?
    S. 06/07/2010 08:19 PM

    “was acquitted”

    About 1,070,000 results

    “found not guilty”

    About 853,000 results

    Close enough that, in my opinion, nothing can be drawn from it.

    In addition, there are “acquitted” and “not guilty” results on Google News concerning Rubashkin.
    mycroft 06/07/2010 11:09 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    Doesn’t a jury usually find a defendant either guilty or not guilty. A not guilty verdit has the effect of acquitting the defendant from all charges-
    Jenny 06/08/2010 05:56 AM

    This looks interesting as it is presented as a psak halakha rather than a political statement. Does anyone know where the psak is published?
    dr. X 06/08/2010 11:45 AM in reply to Steve Brizel
    as i understand it, the state charge was underaged, which one can claim/argue was not apparent to him, hence acquittal – ie – not guilty beyond reasonable doubt. our system of justice requires proof beyond reasonable doubt! being illegal, what the feds are holding up pending how he is sentanced is a wholly different matter.
    Mike S. 06/08/2010 12:03 PM
    In US court a finding of “not guilty” and an acquittal are the same thing. A I understand it, Scottish courts distinguish between “not guilty” and “not proven”; US courts do not. The defendant has neither the possibility nor the burden of proving his innocence–if the state cannot prove guilt “beyond a reasonable doubt” the defendant is found “not guilty” and acquitted.
    Steve Brizel 06/08/2010 05:12 PM in reply to dr. X
    Ain Haci Nami
    Steve Brizel 06/08/2010 05:24 PM
    I think that the Brooks and Fish op eds, along with an article about addiction to technology. are must reading for anyone concerned about the state of education in the US today.
    Michael_Rogovin 06/08/2010 08:08 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    Sure, why not. :-)
    In our system of justice, there is a presumption of innocence which prosecutors must overcome. Juries thus do not find someone innocent, merely that the prosecution did not meet its burden of proof (in criminal trials, beyond a reasonable doubt). There was evidence introduced at trial, as I understand it, that the underage workers lied about their age and that Rubashkin had fired underage workers in the past. No one disputes that there were underage workers, the only question was what did he know and when. The articles I read did not address the issues of mistreatment, so it is not clear what happened with those allegations.

    Obviously this was a good verdict for Mr Rubashkin. Of course, it does not mean he was not in fact guilty, only that the prosecution did not prove it within the standards of state criminal trials (recall the verdict in the Crown Heights trial, l’havdil). From a legal standpoint he is owed the presumption of innocence. A moral judgment that differs from the legal one may still be made, on the basis of other factors. The standards are different and need not coincide. Personally, I do not have sufficient basis for a moral judgment on the labor issues, though others with more information may feel that they do. Given what I know about the meat industry, I suspect working conditions were not good (though not necessarily worse at Agriprocessors than elsewhere). I always thought they had a substandard product and chose to avoid buying it — that was enough for me regardless of the other issues. I also felt that they came to dominate the market in a way that was not good for consumer choice (and which resulted in a too quick defense by those who thought they were too big to be allowed to fail — sound familiar?) As for those who wish to avoid the alleged labor and slaughter problems but still eat meat, there are other choices (such as KOL) and the market allows them to choose other brands that meet their ethical standards while maintaining high standards of kashrut (fortunately these are complementary).
    Steve Brizel 06/08/2010 09:14 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    I read the NYT article which quoted a juror as being quite unimpressed with the prosecution’s case. While the presumption of innocence is a cardinal rule of evidence in a criminal case which IIIRC is of constitutional dimensions, the facts are that a defendant , even in the most seemingly heinous of cases, walks free if the prosecution fails to present sufficient evidence ( i.e. OJ Simpson, Crown Heights). That’s how the system works-both when we like and scream at the results.

    In the absence of a conviction, I believe that it is wrong to assert that there were “alleged labor” problems I recall vividly that one of my classmates in YU who was niftar at a young age became a vegatarian because he could not abide the conditions that he observed in a slaughterhouse where he worked. I disagreed with, but respected his POV. As far as moral opinions and judgments are concerned, we are all entitled to the same, but such opinions have a ring of authenticity to the same when they are supported by evidence, as opposed to solely , primarily or substantially a figment of our imaginations or any conclusion driven by a political or cultural agenda. Unfortunately, history is replete with such moral judgments and their consequences.
    ruvie 06/09/2010 12:28 AM in reply to Steve Brizel
    “that there were “alleged labor” problems”
    nobody dispute that there were. the only dispute was did shlomo rubashkin know. the defense blamed his brother. – heshy. the burden of proof was not there. doesn’t make the person innocent just not guilty. do you think the brothers never talked about the business?
    mycroft 06/09/2010 06:55 AM in reply to Steve Brizel
    Thus of course, no inference can be made that person x did not do any dastardly acts because he was acquited-it was just not prven unaminously BARD.
    Steve Brizel 06/09/2010 10:21 AM in reply to mycroft
    Moral judgments should never be confused with the rule of law. When one does so, anarchy, whether in the form of urban disorders or demonstrations that go beyond the definition of civil disobedience are the result because one has decided that one’s own conscience is the arbiter of what is ethically correct, as opposed to working through and attempting to change and abiding by the existing legal and political system.
    Steve Brizel 06/09/2010 10:23 AM in reply to ruvie
    Any such conversations or allegations of such conversations that were not legally corroborated or admissible are the rankest kind of hearsay.
    Steve Brizel 06/09/2010 10:39 AM
    Obviously, the recent acquittal is a separate proceeding than the sentencing hearing in Federal court. Yet, I wonder whether the most vocal critics of Rubashkin in the Torah community would have been so critical of any prominent MO person who was facing charges of a similar magnitude. I saw nothing of this scope or magnitude in the wake of Madoff ‘s now well documented unrepentant attitude as seen as 60 Minutes and especially a person who occupied a prominent role rendering advice to many MO organizations and institutions. Other than the person in question resigning from his role, there were no public discussions, visiting or picketing his home or place of business, calls of outcry, evidence of any communal Cheshbon HaNefesh or any similar public hand wringing in a scandal, which unlike Rubashkin, has cost many their savings, their jobs, hurt Tzedakos and has been linked to at least one suicide. Am I the only person who perceives a sort of morally hypocritical behavior on display, especially given the fact that violations of CM knows no Hashkafic boundaries?
    Anon 06/09/2010 10:46 AM
    Rabbi Brody does not discuss the various reasons why couples may choose to postpone having children at the start of their marriage. Nowadays, when many couples get married at a very young age, they are often not financially self-sufficient. Furthermore, they have often not spent much time together, and it often takes them a while to work out if they are really compatible. As the many recent cases of young girls who get married and become pregnant straight away, only to get divorced a few months later, the approach advocating everyone to start a family immediately has many problems.
    Furthermore, if a young girl who has not yet started a career becomes pregnant (possibly whilst still in college), she will often find it hard to build a career afterwards. Waiting a couple of years (which, nowadays when we live till 85+ is not so much in the scheme of things), would seem to resolve many of these issues. Of course there are halachic factors involved (see Rav Yitzchak Avi Roness’s article here: http://www.yctorah.org/content/view/371/53/ for an elaboration of the permissive view), but I would argue, that if anything, there are many ‘hashkafic’ factors (such as the ability of people to be self-supportive, and for girls not to have to be divorced with a kid straight after they get married), that would suggest a different approach.
    It would seem that the high rate of poverty in the ultra-Orthodox community is partly attributable to the fact that women are less able to develop their careers at the beginning (the crucial early twenties years). I am not blind to the other factors involved (such as general issues of women’s roles in Judaism, and the sanctity of marriage and marital relations, and life not just being ‘for fun’), but there is a lot of real suffering caused by an overly stringent approach to this topic.
    S. 06/09/2010 10:56 AM
    Madoff was a MO person? This is news.

    Even if he was I think a lot of the criticism of Rubashkin had much to do with the reaction of his supporters, who maintain that he is mamash a tzaddik – not just innocent of the charges. Actually, he’s a tzaddik. Nothing like that ever happened with Madoff. Furthermore, additional elements like implications that this is the new Dreyfus Affair, and the general impression that if shechita got a black eye it was self-inflicted, didn’t help.

    In addition, MO people (who are not themselves involved in fraud and dishonesty, obviously) are constantly on record as being disgusted by it.

    Finally, Insitutional Modern Orthodoxy were not among the most vocal critics of Rubashkin. So you obviously mean the masses, but what masses weren’t critical of him?
    (Edited by a moderator)
    Michael_Rogovin 06/09/2010 10:57 AM in reply to Steve Brizel
    I don’t generally disagree – the system for all its many flaws is a very good one, perhaps the best system that currently is in operation. From a legal and societal perspective (at least American, secular society), it is wrong to continue to harp on allegations of *criminal culpability* once a person has been acquitted. Note that the trial only dealt with certain issues of state criminal violations. For reasons not germane, alleged federal labor law violations were not adjudicated. There might (not certain about this) be civil liability (to the state and/or to individuals) for the alleged conduct. Thus, IMO, it is not correct to say that it is “wrong” to continue to discuss labor issues, at least those that are unresolved.

    Furthermore, as individuals, and as groups, we are entitled to make moral judgments separate from the law. Halachically, we believe in the concept of lifni mishurat hadin and in any case, the standards for moral judgment are not the same as for state criminal courtrooms. Obviously one cannot take any direct action against an individual acquitted of a crime (such as physically harming, harassing, etc), but individuals and groups are well within their rights (as Americans, as Jews and as people of conscience) to refuse to support the person or his business interests, to pursue appropriate legal actions (and/or support those who seek such actions) and to advocate against doing business with the person. Whether or not I personally agree with such actions, they are certainly not unethical or immoral just by virtue of the acquittal. Thus, the continued pursuit of justice against those acquitted of civil rights violations in the 1960s was not immoral, nor the pursuit of civil rights for African Americans after the Supreme Ct decisions of Dred Scott and Plessy v Ferguson. If people take their moral stand and commit crimes in the name of morality (such as anti-abortion activists who kill doctors), that is the anarchy you fear. Nothing of the sort is involved in this case and so your reliance on that theory is, IMO, misplaced.

    Also, your definition of hearsay is incorrect. Hearsay is use of such information, known only from another source introduced as evidence to prove the truth of what is asserted. That is A testifies that C happened because B told A that C happened. One cannot deduce that C happened because of A’s testimony. There are exceptions to the hearsay rule and hearsay evidence may be admissible in some cases. It is merely a rule of evidence and has no moral connotation.
    Michael_Rogovin 06/09/2010 01:21 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    The reaction to Madoff (who is NOT orthodox) was anger, disgust and public vilification. There is no ongoing business to picket AFAIK. He was shut down, and went to jail. He admitted what he did and I thought was contrite if not repentant (but I did not see 60 minutes so I could be mistaken). In any case, there were no defenders among institutional orthodoxy or communal leaders. I fail to see the logic of the comparison. If your claim is that this is hareidi bashing, I think you are mistaken (I agree such a phenomenon exists, just as there is MO-bashing, I do not believe it played any role here but you are of course free to believe anything you like).
    Joseph Kaplan 06/09/2010 01:41 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    ” Am I the only person who perceives a sort of morally hypocritical behavior on display, especially given the fact that violations of CM knows no Hashkafic boundaries?”

    You probably are the only one because (a) Madoff was not any type of Orthodox, (b) there was absolutely no defense of Madoff in the MO community, and (c) anybody in the MO community who did comment on Madoff ftom what I have seen and heard was extremely negative about his behavior and “rooting” for a severe opunishment. Certainly, I didn’t hear anybody organizing prayers in his support. Or, to put it simnply, those in the MO community who were critical of Rubashkin were certainly also critical of madoff, although as vocally because (a) Madoff was not a member of taht community and (b) no one was defending him, as opposed to Rubashkin.
    moshe shoshan 06/09/2010 04:18 PM

    first you accuse YU of some sort of conspiracy to keep the Rav’s shiurim out of circulation. Now this insinuation about some sort of double standard in the MO population in general.

    What gives?
    Steve Brizel 06/09/2010 07:58 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    In the secular world, hearsay is merely a rule of evidence. I think that Halacha has two terms-Lashon Harah and Recilus that AFAIK have definite moral connotations. I do think that substituting one’s moral values for the law is a process that is ripe with potential with disaster as we learned from the urban riots of the 1960s and the use of violence to protest the war in Vietnam merely because the end justified the means.
    Steve Brizel 06/09/2010 08:00 PM in reply to Joseph Kaplan
    I was referring to a prominent MO person who was a scion of an even more prominent MO leader.
    Steve Brizel 06/09/2010 08:01 PM in reply to moshe shoshan
    I made no such claim about YU. I do believe that there is a sense of moral hypocrisy re Madoff and one of his prime supporters
    Steve Brizel 06/09/2010 08:56 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    What about a prominent MO person who sat on the boards of numerous MO institutions and arguably aidsed and abetted Madoff with the way that he allegedly invested their funds in his fiduciary capacity? I think that the overall communal reaction and criticism of this person pales when compared with the outcry over Rubashkin.
    Steve Brizel 06/09/2010 08:58 PM in reply to moshe shoshan
    I do maintain that it is a tragedy of no small proportions that there are less of RYBS’s shiurim on YUTorah than on other websites, especially for a Dor Asher Lo Yadah Es Yosef.
    Steve Brizel 06/09/2010 09:02 PM in reply to S.
    I saw no evidence of any MO communal outrage at [deleted], but rather what could reasonably be inferred as satisfaction with his resignation, as opposed to any communal Cheshbon HaNefesh, etc.
    (Edited by a moderator)
    Steve Brizel 06/09/2010 09:19 PM in reply to Nachum
    I saw that Beinart was speaking at Barnes & Noble at E 86th Street. I wish that I could be there to hear what others had to say about his horrendous views on Israel.
    Michael_Rogovin 06/09/2010 10:11 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    Why do you associate morality and violence? You claim you read posts before you reply, then you ignore what is written and substitute your own prejudiced viewpoint for that of the person posting. Under your schema, there is no difference between (1) an abortion protestor who murders a doctor and (2) a person who, disagreeing with the Supreme Court’s Dred Scott decision continues to advocate against slavery. (As for the Vietnam War protests, most of the protests were non-violent; of course there were some exceptions, but much of the violence at the protests was by the police & national guard – anything else is a rewriting of history).

    It is generally wrong for someone whose morality conflicts with the law to use violence, at least in a society that is overall a just one (would you say it was wrong for the hagana to use violence in the 1940s or for partisans to use violence against the law in Nazi Germany?) But no one is advocating using violence or other law-breaking activity in the Rubashkin case, so you are raising a red herring. The halachot of lashon hara or richilut are not dependent on a guilty/not-guilty verdict or what issues are litigated and so if the activity is otherwise not in violation of halacha, the court’s decision has no bearing on that discussion. Within secular law and ethics, the verdict has no bearing on otherwise legal conduct based on personal or communal moral/ethical issues.
    Michael_Rogovin 06/09/2010 10:22 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    I do not know all of the facts. What I understand is that his actions (which would not have been permitted on many boards due to conflict of interest provisions) seem to have had limited (albeit very serious) overall communal impact, thus most people’s relationship to him and his business are more remote than Rubashkin. The primary fraud was Madoff, though how it was that this person was duped (if he was) remains a mystery. Personally, I would treat any person who knowingly brought a charitable institution into a ponzi scheme as a pariah. Sadly, it would not surprise me to find out that there are people whose business practices I find troubling are members of my shul. When it becomes public, I make my feelings well known. Unfortunately, in all circles, RW and MO, there are such people and their transgressions are too often overlooked when it is time to solicit donations.
    Nachum 06/10/2010 01:48 AM in reply to Steve Brizel
    Well, I personally heard Richard Joel bemoan the fact (at an alumni event) that he had “a psychotic and a criminal” on his board. I’m not 100% sure which was which.
    mycroft 06/10/2010 06:28 AM in reply to Steve Brizel
    In addition to the Madoff cyce-in the past decade a big YU Board member with smicha-pled guilty to a big fraud-died in jail. No outrage at all. Look at the letters sent to judge defending him-a big giver of charity -an almost whose who of MO. Letters of course did no good-judge sentenced to more years than person had remaining. to live.
    Michael_Rogovin 06/10/2010 10:05 AM in reply to mycroft
    And a murderer received support of a broad swath of orthodoxy, particularly among the RW. Let’s face it, whether it is Merkin, Rubashkin, the organ-selling, bribing NJ Rabbis etc – we are an ethically challenged community and studying Torah clearly does not automatically lead one to practicing its precepts, particularly ben adam l’chavero. This plague afflicts MO and RWO alike and is not new. We should spend more time on the ethics side and less find ways to somehow justify or defend the perpetrators by finding some halachic heter.
    ruvie 06/10/2010 11:09 AM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    there is a huge difference between leaders in the rw/chareidi community rallying publicly around criminals and murderers as pious religious people and leaders in the mo community. the mo community is not calling people anti-semites and justifying their chilul hashem (as well as breaking legal,moral and ethical laws). the similarities are not there on the institutional level as well as the individual level.
    Wwwwq 06/10/2010 11:41 AM
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 11:48 AM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    Look at this way. While President Lincoln praised Harriet Beecher Stowe as the little woman who started a big war, Uncle Tom’s Cabin was a classical litrerary protest fully protected by the First Amendment. However, there are boundaries even to the constitutionally protected means of speech. The law recognizes no defense based on a moral judgment for the actions of John Brown in pre Civil War Kansas or someone who murders a doctor who performs abortions. As far as the Vietnam War era protests, many of the student protests not only were violent, but sought to destroy laboratories, etc on campuses as well as other locales that had nothing to do with the war effort such as Frances Tavern.I see no basis for the defense of killing policemen as some sort of protest-which happened in more than one case. FWIW. one of the President’s acquaintances defended his own role in violent protests.

    I agree with your distinction between a just and an unjust society. However, when a court of law has rendered a judgment in a just society, one should use extreme caution in claiming that one’s sense of moral judgment allows one to go beyond the pale of civil disobedience.
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 11:57 AM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    Which murderer? Neither Goldstein nor Amir received anything remotely close of support of a broad swath of Orthodoxy. I know of one case of a murderer serving life where R M Tendler testified and the Court of Appeals issued a very important decision on priest-penitent priviledge. I do not think that the person involved received broad support.
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 12:02 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    I remember when the nursing home scandals were a Page 1 NY Times story in the mid 1970s and that R S Riskin, among others, tried to raise the ethical consciousness of the community on CM related issues to whom the primary accused person was no small donor-the YU. RIETS, RCA and RZA communities and was basically told that he was hardly a Baal Musar. FWIW, I once was offered an invitation to the son of the person involved for a Shabbos meal and declined the invitation because the son was known to anyone who spoke to him as being wholly unrepentant.
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 12:13 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    You are absolutely correct. R S Riskin once quoted D S Baron’s phrase of “inverted Marrano”) which an occasional poster mentioned to one of my chavrusos as the source of the phrase, albeit used by R Riskin in the context of “tefilin dates” , etc. I think that until all of us , regardless of our hashkafos, realize that there can be distinction between our adherence to the dictates and spirit of CM and OC, we are doomed to see more scandals. R Blau of RIETS has mentioned on more than one occasion that so much of the content of the Baalei Musar is ignored. RHS has mentioned that we spend far too much on the irrelevant aspects of Shmiras HaLashon instead of being familiar at our fingertips as to when the dictates of Lashon HaRah don’t apply.
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 12:20 PM in reply to ruvie
    True-Yet, the level of moral indignation at the conduct of the person in question within the MO world struck me as muted. I seem to recall that while there was a public meeting to discuss business ethics at YU which was very critical of Rubashkin, I saw very little in terms of public meetings after the Madoff scandal became public and in particular, the role of a YU Board member who has been a prominent Board member in any one of a number of prominent MO institutions. Yes, RHS spoke at the Jewish Center on CM. but I didn’t see a public convocation devoted to Chesbon HaNefesh on the issue. One can only wonder why, especially since foundations closed up, people lost their savings and more than one person R”L took his own life.
    Michael_Rogovin 06/10/2010 12:29 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    I meant Martin Grossman. There are still those rabbis who support the actions of the two you mentioned, but I had not even thought about them.
    Michael_Rogovin 06/10/2010 12:38 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    You keep harping on this. We are discussing whether it is appropriate or permissible to continue to judge Rubashkin in the ‘court of public opinion’ in light of the verdict in a state criminal trial. For once and for all, what is your basis for implying that anyone is advocating using violence against Rubashkin on the basis of their believe that he is guilty of immoral conduct notwithstanding the jury verdict. That is what we are discussing here.
    ruvie 06/10/2010 12:44 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    the person in question is being sued n an individual level and institutional level by ex friends in the community. in his role it is not clear cut and dry whether he committed a crime (its a little murky on the securities law issue) or he should have known better and therefore guilt(even though he lost a lot of money as well). the chesbon hanefesh was on madoff and every rabbi came out swinging – where people are tired of the same old speech. this is the opposite in the chareidi community and its alarming about what will it mean in the future. the blind eye or acceptance(on certain acts dealing with money laundering etc which are pervasive) by the leading rabbis in that world portends to many more bad headlines for all jews.
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 12:58 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    Thanks for your clarification. I had my qualms about how the campaign for clemency for Grossman was orchestrated. but I do admit that capital punishment except for cases of treason is an issue that concerns me as to how it is applied, etc.
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 01:00 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    I think that the “court of public opinion” has to be resorted to carefully and not with a rush to accomplish especially when those who seek its protection were dissapointed by a conclusion rendered by a court of law.
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 01:03 PM
    Let’s see what the communal reaction to any result in the litigation is from the person’s former friends. Is the litigation purely civil, or are the SEC and the Department of Justice involved?
    Michael_Rogovin 06/10/2010 01:09 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    (re Capital Punishment)
    I agree. And if the community would make appeals like it did for Grossman for every person about to be executed, I would not have had a problem. But it doesn’t, and in fact appears to support capital punishment except when applied to one of its own. Same for intense policing.
    ruvie 06/10/2010 01:13 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    i know of the civil …. i am sure that us attorney office of the southern district is looking but they don’t do anything until they are ready at 5:30 am to take you away in cuffs.
    Michael_Rogovin 06/10/2010 01:14 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    So you admit that there is no issue of violence. As I suspected – a red herring. Bottom line: all the verdict did was resolve a limited legal question: was there criminal liability for violations of state child labor statutes? No other legal or moral issue was resolved by the court, and therefore these remain open issues for discussion, and for opinions that run the gamut, especially by those more informed than you or I.
    Richard Kahn 06/10/2010 02:59 PM
    Steve, also note that one of the only people (the only person I know of) to actually defend Madoff was R. Avi Shafran. http://matzav.com/bernie-sully-and-me
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 03:02 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    See Nat Lewin’s column in the most recent issue of the Jewish Press. I am loathe to have public opinion render its verdict either before , during or after a proceeding, because , even if there is no threat of violence, public opinion’s contrary reaction to a legal proceeding is inherently antinomian and leads to someone being convicted before he or she has been tried by a jury. It is easy to condemn Rubashkin’s conduct from our perspectives, but doing so reveals an innate bias and thus unable to serve in the jury that would render any verdict cognizable under the legal system. I submit that if you have such an opinion based on your own moral scruples or limited knowledge, that you would be excused for cause from any pool of jurors on this or any other case.
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 03:45 PM in reply to Richard Kahn
    See my prior posts. I was discussing another person well known in the MO community , who served on many boards in a fiduciary role, who was linked to Madoff.
    Michael_Rogovin 06/10/2010 05:02 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    I don’t read the JP but I find myself in disagreement with Mr Lewin a lot recently. In any case, since I do not reside in Iowa, I am ineligible for jury service there and the trial is over. It goes without saying (so I am not sure why you said it) that anyone who expresses an opinion about an accused cannot serve as a juror in the US court system. But based on your comments you do not seem to understand that the trial was not on the entirety of the accusations made against Agri & Rubashkin, but only a small subset. The moral arguments go to issues that were not adjudicated at trial and thus the trial outcome has little or no impact on any judgment you, I or Rabbi Yanklowitz makes regarding the company or person. I am NOT encouraging people to make judgments, positive or negative, only stating that we are dealing with two different systems, two different standards and a multitude of different issues. For you or anyone to suggest that the acquittal means that anyone should reserve judgment or stop seeking justice (if they feel that there are still unresolved issues) goes against historical and legal precedent. There is no moral or legal basis to say that since X was found not guilty of crime A, we need not seek appropriate accountability for crime B or civil violation C or ethical failure D.

    Whether or not this principle applies to Rubashkin, and if so how, is a matter of conscience best left to each individual or organization. The principle certainly applies to many issues that are settled law in the US but about which people continue to debate the morality (abortion, end-of-life decisions, use of tobacco or cannabis, affirmative action, etc)
    Michael_Rogovin 06/10/2010 08:46 PM
    Re Red Heifer Farms (in the NY Times article about locally raised meat), I am not sure if it is OK to ask this question on the blog, but does anyone have any info on Rabbi Zvi Ashkenazi who certifies the kashrut of the meat?
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 09:10 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    When your conscience or sense of values prevents you from rendering an impartial decision on any issue, you are in effect biased, regardless of your particular take on an issue. To the extent that you are seeking accountability for other alleged violations of the law that have never been proven, you are engaging in potentially antinomian conduct that is almost anarchistic because you deem the accepted legal system with its rules of procedure and evidence as obstacles in the way of exercising your moral judgment. That’s what happened when one allows one’s conscience to serve as a judge, jury and prosecutor in the place of evidence-which unfortunately has happened in morally based reactions to legal decisions and the rule of law in the areas of abortion, end of life decisions, whether one should use tobacco or cannabis, and affirmative action. and which all too often occures, when one uses a moral compass to evaluate any issue, as opposed to considering whether a statute or a particular judicial decision is right or wrong or serves a societal purpose.I don’t think that one can ever separate extreme or illegal conduct that is based on a moral judgment from a simple application of the Machiavellian notion that the “end justifies the means”.
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 09:20 PM
    For those who don’t read the Yated, there is a picture of RAL,. at the installation of R Y Lichtenstein as a rav in a Beis Medrash in Monsey together with an article that mentions RYBS , RAL and Dr Tovah L as well. In an article about Shaarei Tefila and profile of R D Weinberger., R Weinberger imforms the reader that his shul features SIR from RIETS ( RHS) and Lakewood. There is a wonderful article about R Asher Weiss’s remarks at a special night of Chizuk for Lakewood in Lakewood.
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 09:22 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    Michael Rogovin wrote in part:
    “I don’t read the JP”

    That reminds me about Woody Allen’s line about those persons who claimed that they didn’t read a certain magazine.
    Joseph Kaplan 06/10/2010 10:08 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    “you deem the accepted legal system with its rules of procedure and evidence as obstacles in the way of exercising your moral judgment. ”

    The legal system, especially the criminal legal system has little, if anything, to do with moral judgment; it has to do with criminal liability. If someone gets off on some technicality, I can’t have a moral judgment that he/she acted immorally? After the aquital in state court of Lemrick Nelson, I couldn’t have a moral judgment that his action was immoral? I had to wait for that moral judgment for the federal trial? If it’s not illegal it’s not immoral? I don’t know enough about the Rubashkin case to have a moral judgment about his actions, but I can certainly understand that people who do know more facts than I can legitimately say: the government might not have had enough evidence to convict him beyond a reasonable doubt, but beyond a reasonable doubt isn’t the standard in civil litigation and it’s not the standard in moral judgments either.
    Steve Brizel 06/10/2010 10:23 PM
    That’s exactly my point-one should never confuse the criminal justice system with one’s sense of moral conscience inasmuch they are based on vastly different bases and means of implementation.
    mycroft 06/10/2010 10:34 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    Essentially agree-we are not just a ritualistic religion.
    mycroft 06/10/2010 10:37 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    Agree in general but see eg RAL’s anger at those who here maspid Goldstein as if nothing terrible happened.
    mycroft 06/10/2010 10:44 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    Nat Lewin has done a lot for klal Israel as part of his pro bono work-but one must remember that he has in the past used that to help his paying clients-he is certainly one of the leading white collar criminal defence lawyers. Query-when he worked for Lubavitch in the books lawsuit v Gurary in what capacity was he acting.
    Shlomo 06/11/2010 10:08 AM
    Gil: what do you think about the possible next chief rabbi of Haifa, who defines his ideal community as “more orthoprax than orthodox”?

    Michael_Rogovin 06/11/2010 10:18 AM in reply to Steve Brizel
    WADR, you throw around a lot of big words, but they serve only to obscure rather than clarify your arguments. The issues are simple: does a verdict on a narrow area of criminal liability preclude individuals from rendering a moral judgment on other issues that involve the same person and relate to the same or different but connected conduct.

    Since legal and moral systems of judgment have different standards and legal decisions are based on precedent and evidentiary/procedural standards, it is often the case that the verdict may not even relate to the crime itself (such as when an error by the police results in a criminal going free). Morality is also evolving or differs among different religions and cultures. In American society, we agree that it is morally wrong to act on one’s personal morality in a way that infringes on others rights and is thus illegal (such might not be the case in other societies). But American law and the social contract thankfully preserve the moral and legal right to speak out, lobby, agitate (peacefully) and otherwise advocate for both changes to the law and for moral judgment notwithstanding a different legal judgment. Anarchy is everyone enforcing one’s moral judgment on others. No one advocates that. But being vocal and saying that something is wrong is not anarchy; it is healthy democracy. Anything else is autocracy.
    hirhurim 06/11/2010 10:28 AM in reply to Shlomo
    It all depends on the context of what he says and what he means. I’m all for Orthopraxy if we are talking about keeping people from going entirely off the derech or bringing people closer to Yiddishkeit.
    Shlomo 06/11/2010 10:53 AM in reply to hirhurim
    In the article I linked to, it seems pretty lechatchila.
    Mark 06/11/2010 12:27 PM in reply to Richard Kahn
    Nonsense! He did not defend him. You failed to read or comprehend his words.
    Andy 06/11/2010 01:24 PM
    Can someone translate this hesped of the Lubavitcher Rebbe by Rabbi Dr Aharaon Lichtenstein for Hirhurim readers. I would like to understand what he is saying.

    MiMedinat HaYam 06/11/2010 02:25 PM
    re: rav ronen
    i think he’s more newage-y than orthprax. have to watch out if he croses the line.

    though i think the rabbanut harashit (in yerushalayim) will try to prevent him from getting elected (assuming they have such a legal power) or stifle him in his actions (assuming they have that legal power), if he gets elected. expect lawsuits and demonstrations.

    his comment that he does not cite / study charedi poskim is intersting, in light of the discussion in another post here today.

    though the disclaimer is very relevant — RZ is different than MO, so comparisons are invalid.
    jadedtopaz 06/11/2010 02:33 PM
    Oh is this the thread for translation requests ?
    Can someone please translate the Avnei Miluim on Even Haezer by R Aryeh Leib Hacohen Heller, I would like to understand what he is saying.
    Oh and while you’re at it a quick translation for the Ketzos Hachoshen on Choshen Mishpat would be way awesome too.

    On a different note, does anyone know where I can locate a copy of the Conservative response in its entirety on the cemetery issue.
    Steve Brizel 06/11/2010 02:58 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    Ain Haci Nami.
    Steve Brizel 06/11/2010 03:00 PM in reply to Joseph Kaplan
    I think that a link to your superb article in the Five Towns Jewish Times re your class warrants a link.
    Lion of Zion 06/12/2010 10:05 PM

    “Yeshiva Darchei Torah, an all boys school, which now educates more than 1,400 students ranging from pre-K through kollel—the largest non-chassidic yeshiva in the New York area”

    i assume yeshivah of flatbush has more students
    Steve Brizel 06/12/2010 10:40 PM in reply to mycroft
    Most, if not all, Wall Street and Park Avenue firms, also do pro bono work, while representing corporate America , etc. Lewin’s pro bono work is for Klal Yisrael.
    Steve Brizel 06/12/2010 10:43 PM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    Michael Rogovin wrote in part:

    “American law and the social contract thankfully preserve the moral and legal right to speak out, lobby, agitate (peacefully) and otherwise advocate for both changes to the law and for moral judgment notwithstanding a different legal judgment. Anarchy is everyone enforcing one’s moral judgment on others. No one advocates that”

    Really? American and European history is replete with such individuals, regardless of their views, who have sought to impose their views via violent means because they were unhappy with the legal and political status quo.
    Michael_Rogovin 06/12/2010 11:28 PM
    I am giving up. When I wrote “no one” I meant no one in this conversation. I am astounded that you thought I could have meant no one in the known universe. I mean, really Steve, it is beyond obvious that there are and were anarchists and terrorists, etc. This is just silly. We are talking about THE RUBASHKIN CASE and you see an end to civilization. I thought we had agreed that the narrow criminal case did not (and could not) resolve all of the moral issues involved and therefore an individual’s moral view of the matter is not bound by a criminal court verdict. I really don’t see what is being added at this point.
    mycroft 06/13/2010 12:49 AM in reply to Steve Brizel
    Agreed-but one has to be careful in evaluating Lewins stements that the Jewish media print if they involve clients. He is simply often doing what any good attorney does zealous representation of his clients.
    BTW-not probably well known now is his father had a distinguished career, Agudah memeber ofPolish Legislature and of course Teacher in Revel. I had him as a n instructor of mine.
    mycroft 06/13/2010 12:56 AM in reply to Lion of Zion
    Probably many coed schools have more students from nursery-through HS. Of course, YDT claims to be aYeshiva as opposed to a day school. IMHO the term Yeshiva should not be used for pre Beis Medrash schools. The use has meant that schools try and imitate an elite system from Europe for the elite-instead of a sytem where we first make sure that all can stay Jews by learning how to daven etc- Thus, we have a system where kids who can’t daven are taught Brisker Torah.
    Baruch Pelta 06/13/2010 08:54 AM
    Mazel tov to Mr. Kaplan. R’ Ciner seemed really refreshed by the whole event.
    Steve Brizel 06/13/2010 10:17 AM in reply to Michael_Rogovin
    Let’s assume that the Federal charges are thrown out on appeal because the trial judge refused to allow the same evidence that was before the state court jury and that the evidence was deemed admissible in a retrial and the case is either dismissed or Rubashkin is acquitted in a retrial and the result would be no pending charges but a ruined business ? Would one still feel that one’s moral judgment in this case supercedes and or takes precedence over the conclusions reached by the legal system?

    On a further point-of course, one is entitled to a moral judgment on any issue.
    Joseph Kaplan 06/13/2010 10:45 AM in reply to Steve Brizel
    “Would one still feel that one’s moral judgment in this case supercedes and or takes precedence over the conclusions reached by the legal system?”

    Michael can speak for himself, but my answer would be: they would not supercede or take precedence as far as legal/criminal liability is concerned, but similarly, the legal judgment would not supercede or take precedence over the moral judgment in the world of ethics and morality. Two different systems.
    Michael_Rogovin 06/13/2010 11:08 AM in reply to Joseph Kaplan
    Agreed. two different systems judging two (three really) different types of conduct using three (moral, state criminal, federal civil) different standards. Little or no connection. We are repeating ad nauseam. Time to move on.


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