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Plymouth Rock Assurance Company of New Jersey discriminates against Jews

Moshe worked near the orthodox synagogue in Westboro, Mass. He sold insurance, always passed quota, left early in winter on Fridays, didn’t work Saturday, and never missed the numbers.

So the office is moving to Hudson, where there is no synagogue nor observant Jewish community. After looking for a change, he had job offers from Portland OR, Lakewood NJ, and elsewhere. He picked Lakewood because he is a single young man and there is a big orthodox community there.

After he accepted the offer in writing, moved out of his apartment, he is now being told that his offer of employment has been rescinded because he will not work one Saturday a month. This requirement wasn’t mentioned on the job posting, nor was even touched upon during the entire interview process.

This isn’t Saudi Arabia, this is 2015 in Greater New York. This isn’t an employer hassling someone for leaving early on Friday; this is revoking an offer of employment due to religious observance.

Moshe needs to hire a lawyer; this isn’t about money, it is about religious freedom. And we need to make a public stink so that Plymouth Rock Assurance Company learns to accept diversity.

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Drone Wars

drones and birds - the future of American advertising

Drones are much more profitable when they fly low and wear advertising.  At the same time, their loudspeakers can remind us to stop for a coffee.

(Like today’s evangelical highway gas pumps — but flying.)

Who knows?  Just as so-called computers have evolved primarily into communication devices, with accounting and payroll only vestigial organs, drones may evolve into commerce-enhancing herding animals, er, I mean Guidance Companions, with the occasional friendly or fearsome payload a mere bonus.

(I wouldn’t think of going anywhere without my GC, would you?)

But the real progress will come from biotechnology.  We will all be happier, smarter consumers when birds are bred with billboard camouflage and can sing us individualized jingles from nearby treetops. Read the rest of this entry »

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Just One More Ignorant Anti-Semite in Virginia Politics

John Whitbeck, clueless Virginia politician

John Whitbeck, clueless Virginia politician

Hard to believe, but the Virginia GOP hasn’t learned much from its setbacks of recent years.  John Whitbeck, a Republican district chairman, just a few hours ago introduced the Republican candidate for  governor with an anti-semitic joke.  What a way to celebrate Constitution Day!

It’s watchable on YouTube  at

The joke states that for hundreds of years each newly elected pope has received a delegation from the head of the Jews attempting to collect on a bill for “The Last Supper”.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Binders of Women, Binders of Lies

A still photo of Obama and Romney, exrtracted from the video of the second debate.

We Jews are good at reading between the lines of a text to tease out its full significance.   So how do I read Romney’s most memorable response of the second debate?

First of all, the question was tantamount to asking:  What will you do to fix the fact that women get 72 cents for doing what men get a dollar to do?

Obama responded by saying that he had promoted and gotten passed a law that now makes it easier for women to sue their employers.  (I’m sure that big business loves that!)

Whether or not Obama’s approach to solving the problem is satisfying to you, his answer at least shows that he understood the question, and that he agrees that this inequality is a bad thing, and that he believes that it is something a president should take positive actions to fix.

Romney responded by saying that while he was governor he had approached women’s groups and sought their suggestions for female candidates for cabinet positions, and they were able to give him whole binders of women!

This weird response shows a lot:

  • First, he appeared to be claiming that there is no problem, as though the availability of large numbers of qualified women willing to serve on his cabinet indicated that there is no inequality problem.
  • Second, he appeared to be suggesting that taking affirmative action in his cabinet (even if only for political reasons) is somehow a satisfactory way to repair this problem.
  • Third, his response shows that when he was governor, he couldn’t simply determine the “best man” for each job, and trust that approximately 50% of his appointments would turn out to be women.  The fact that he had to pay attention to gender is itself evidence of a serious social problem.
  • Fourth, his choice of words, “binders of women”, suggests a psychology antithetical to gender equality and immersed in objectification.  Is “binders” the most appropriate collective noun available here?!
    a pride of lions
    a school of fish
    a flock of sheep
    a pod of whales
    a gaggle of geese
    a smuck of jellyfish
    a binder of women

Romney has coined a new usage!

Fifth, and perhaps the topper:  Romney lied!  He didn’t ask for that “binder of women”; it was prepared by a non-profit group concerned with the paucity of women in cabinet-type positions and presented to him after his inauguration as governor.  Pushed into his hands, as it were.


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The Greatest Antisemitic Play Ever Written

Al Pacino as an Unsympathetic Shylock

Al Pacino as Shylock

New York’s “Shakespeare in the Park” is offering a new production of The Merchant of Venice, starring Al Pacino. This news has reminded me of the first time I saw Shakespeare’s profoundly antisemitic play.  Not having read it beforehand, I came to the performance with fresh ears.  Jewish ears.

The Merchant of Venice is an Elizabethan comedy.  That means a complicated love story in which serious obstacles to love are presented and then overcome, and a happy ending is reached.  In this case, there are three pairs of would-be lovers interacting.  Their plans for happiness involve borrowing money.  The most important obstacle to their happiness is the play’s main character, Shylock.

Shylock is a rich Jewish moneylender who is owed money by a defaulting Christian debtor.   He is a monster motivated by hate and revenge.  His written loan agreement states that if the debtor can’t repay, then a pound of the guarrantor’s flesh is due.  Shylock gleefully intends to enforce this clause.  Although the dialog makes it clear that Shylock is a Jew, there isn’t anything Jewish left in his character except his memory of suffering.

Most productions show a local Jewish community in existence all around him, but those actors go about their business as usual.  Not one fellow Jew whacks Shylock on the head and says, “What are you crazy?”   No committee drags him off to a Rabbi for correction.  It’s surreal. Read the rest of this entry »

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Socially Progressive Terrorist’s Latest Casualty is CNN’s Senior Editor

Nasr and Fadlallah

Nasr and Fadlallah

I hate to tweak Thomas L. Friedman, whose experience and readership dwarfs Jewish Jihad’s by about a million to one, but his published defense of the recently fired CNN senior editor of Middle East affairs, Octavia Nasr, is off base.

Nasir was fired for tweeting “Sad to hear of the passing of Sayyed Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah.” Fadlallah, a prominent Lebanese Shiite spiritual leader, was involved in the founding of Hezbollah. He hated Israel and supported terrorist attacks on Israeli civilians. Nasr described him as “one of Hezbollah’s giants I respect a lot.”

The only fault Friedman finds in Nasr’s tweets is that “reporters covering a beat should not be issuing condolences for any of the actors they cover. It undermines their credibility.”

But reporters do this all the time. Tributes after the deaths of “covered actors” are the norm, from Ted Kennedy to Michael Jackson. They demonstrate our values.

Perhaps Nadr was enamored of Fadlallah because, unlike most other terrorists, Fadlallah argued in favor of equal rights and education for women, and against domestic violence. Or maybe because, although he opposed the U.S., he also opposed obedience to Iran. Read the rest of this entry »

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The #2 Republican is a #1 Antisemite

Warren Chisum

Warren Chisum

According to Warren Chisum (the second most senior Republican in the House of Representatives, and a former Chair of the House Appropriations Committee) evolution is a religious doctrine introduced two thousand years ago by the “Pharisaic Religion.”

Chisum wrote a letter of support that was attached to a bizarre memo being circulated by Ben Bridges (a Georgia State Representative), citing several profoundly antisemitic websites as proof that evolution stems from “rabbinic writings in the… kabala.”

Bridges and Chisum thus tried to kill two birds with one stone:   If evolution is a religious doctrine, then it ought to be banned in public schools;  and if it came from the Jews then it must be evil.   Read the rest of this entry »

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Welcome to Nazi History Month

Robert McDonnell, Virginia's New Racist Governor

Virginia's New Racist Governor

The new governor of Virginia, Robert McDonnell, took office in January.   From his state capital in Richmond, which is also the former capital of the Confederacy, he issued a state proclamation celebrating April as “Confederate History Month.”  Amazingly, the proclamation contained no mention of slavery.
Read the rest of this entry »

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