Virtual Talmud

Virtual Talmud


Obama and Fear Mongerers

With the Republican nomination all but wrapped up, whatever attention Americans still have left for politics turns to the Democratic nomination, where Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton are both still viable contenders. Despite Obama’s recent momentum, it’s far too early to count Clinton out; she has shown herself to be a resourceful and relentless campaigner who isn’t above stooping to some low blows. In fact, she’s made her willingness to use hard-edged tactics something of a campaign theme; her point is that she has traded shots and spin with the best of them and has the grit and determination to prove it, while the relatively untested Obama would be walking blindfolded into the arms of the Republican smear machine should he become the Democratic nominee.
Clinton is right that Obama had something of a free ride for a while, receiving perhaps less press scrutiny than other major candidates, (although Bill Clinton’s whining about it only served to alienate voters) but that is now coming to an abrupt end. Nasty whispering campaigns and e-mails-–often anonymous-–have been in increasing circulation, implying that he is a junkie (based on admissions of past youthful drug use) or a terrorist (based on three years spent in a nominally Muslim school in Indonesia) or, better yet, both.


Given the sad state of our nation’s current political discourse, these sorts of attacks are simply an expected-–if vile-–part of the cost of doing business. But there is one trend that has emerged in recent weeks that is particularly troubling to me as a rabbi–a questioning of Obama’s commitment to the Jewish people and the concomitant insinuation that he is a closet anti-Semite. One particularly vicious posting–this one written by Jewish author and right-wing pundit Naomi Ragen–-points out that the church to which Obama belongs has honored Nation of Islam founder and hatemonger Louis Farrakhan. The posting goes on to cite despicable quotations by Farrakhan, as if juxtaposing enough truly awful things that Farrakhan has said with Obama’s name would somehow suggest that Obama supports them (for the record, he has denounced both Farrakhan and the choice to honor him). Additional charges in the post include that he is willing to talk with Muslim leaders. Oh, and that his father (who ran out on him when Obama was two years old and whom he never met again) is Muslim.
Now this is plain disgusting. Brandishing the label “Muslim” as though it were a dirty word (a politically correct term for ‘terrorist’?) is pure bigotry. And the capricious and cynical throwing out of insinuations of anti-Semitism to try to smear someone’s reputation lessens Jews’ moral authority and makes us less likely to take the real thing (i.e., Farrakhan) seriously when it does present itself. That the originator of these baseless and bigoted charges proudly trumpets her Jewish identity makes it all the more important that we stand against them.
Our tradition teaches that leshon ha-ra (hateful speech) injures three parties: the one who says it, the one who is spoken about, and the one who hears it. These sorts of smears prove the point by demeaning us all.



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ShoshannaSue

posted February 25, 2008 at 7:41 pm


Barrack Hussain Obama was educated in Jakara at a Muslim school, a Wahabi School, which teaches Radical Muslim doctrine. Wahabi has been tought to those followed by Muslim terrorists.
The United Church of Christ may have had Farrakhan has a guest speaker but they have had other black leaders as guests and Jewish People speaking as guests as well. The Church is not anti-semetic or Racist and Jews should not fear the church. Farrakhan did ask for Forgiveness from the Jews at the Funeral of the late Rosa Parks, who stood and the front of the bus and started the civil rights movement many years ago. He spoke at her funeral, “Please forgive us Lord for any anti-semitism that we may have caused the Jewish People and that I personally have said or caused becaused my of my daughter and Sister Rosa would have wanted it that way Lord! And, deliver us to the Promised Land, Oh, Lord, I Pray Unto You.” Brought tears to my eyes as I watched it and that is how I remembered it. Very touching.
Now the election of a man named Barrack Hussain Obama may be of concern. I hope in your hearts that if you are voting for a Democrat that you pick the right one. We should be ready for women who can clean up messes that the dirty men in the present regime have soiled over the land, our country and the world.



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Iwantamotto

posted February 26, 2008 at 8:05 am


The bigotry is atrocious…
Just on the news this morning, some Dem is spreading pics of Obama wearing traditional garb of some country … rather hypocritically, since this candidate, her husband, and just about everyone else does the same thing when they visit other countries and need a photo op. People forget that there isn’t a rule in the Constitution that you must be Christian. I think we’ve all seen just how well that’s worked out for us over the last few administrations. The perfect person to deal with certain hostile groups is NOT a self-righteous WASP. I don’t believe that Obama is Muslim … but then again, I don’t think that’s a problem anyway. In fact, I think it would be, if anything, a strategic advantage. If it took a 2-headed lesbian multi-racial alien to fix this country, then I say “go for it”.



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CharlieF2

posted February 26, 2008 at 10:11 am


I am SO disappointed that BeliefNet even bothered to pose the question: should Jews fear Obama? What kind of garbage is that? Obama is a Christian just like all of the other candidates and a good man. He has nothing but the best intentions for this country. He is leading an enviable life – a good father and husband, trying to make the world a better place via his public service and generally thinks of others. He is a much better man than Bill Clinton could ever dream to be. Please recall this email and take down this post as it is completely prejudiced and not worthy of a site like yours!



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Scott R.

posted February 26, 2008 at 10:18 am


That Farrakhan endorsed him, that his pastor is rabidly anti-Israel, and that some of his advisers are also anti-Israel (and after awhile, yes, it does add up to anti-Jew) causes be deep concern.
I am well aware that he is not a Muslim. It’s the Xians he keeps company with that give me pause.
I’ve supported Hillary Clinton all the way, and my hand hasn’t pulled a Republican lever since I vote for Bush the First in ’88. But if Obama gets the nomination, I will very likely vote for McCain.
If it’s time for a non-white President – and it is overdue – why couldn’t we have been given Colin Powell. I would have voted for him in a heartbeat. Maybe McCain will choose Rice as a running mate.



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Philip

posted February 26, 2008 at 10:26 am


I don’t know if you know this but the UCC has been known to parner up with the UUA (unitarian universalist association). While the UCC does accept christ while the UUA doesn’t they both have the same principles, that all religions should be accepted. the idea that Obama or the UCC have strict anti-semetic morals is rediculous. I am saying this as a Jewish Unitarian (or Jewnatarian as we say). My mothers family is jewish and never have either the UUA or the UCC made them feel attacked.



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Judy

posted February 26, 2008 at 10:36 am


I have been a bit concerned about Obama being the president – in regards to his stand on Judaism and Israel, etc. I went to his site, and was quite surprised about his views – on the other hand, he has been supported by Farrakhan, a noted anti-semite, so I am left a great deal confused.



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Allan

posted February 26, 2008 at 10:39 am


Obama screams for change and a New America. This worries me as he is unclear about how he plans to affect these massive changes. Would that also apply to Israel? Don’t really know, do we? The media has reported lately that he has had Pro-Palestinian leanings in the past. Hopefully,
he will not turn into a Jimmy Carter (whom Jews voted for in large numbers). The choice for President is critical; for America and Israel.



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Deborah

posted February 26, 2008 at 10:46 am


I don’t like Obama, because he says this country needs change yet he never says how he will change it, I have a gut feeling that everyone who thinks Mr Obama is the better choice will find out just how much he dislikes Israel



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Robin

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:04 am


I read both of his books – sure did not find one gilmmer of anti-semitism in either. The fact that you post this article on the site makes me question whose camp you are in. Oh, by the way, what is Obama’s first name?



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NormH

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:12 am


This is a non-issue. Both of his parents were secular. He was not raised in a religious household. I think that gives him an objective view on all religious matters. He is a rational man.



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Sheron Gibson

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:17 am


I so agree with Allan and Deborah…his word are pretty, but not once have I heard how he intends to bring about these changes. Everyone knows what’s needed, but how do we achieve it? As for Farrakhan, Obama didn’t sever his friendship with him until he became so embroiled in politics..what does this say about Obama’s character? That he will trample even his friends to better himself in the public eye. He’s all talk and no action. This makes him very dangerous and he scares me to death!



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MeeKaill

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:18 am


What is there to fear but God? No man can make the winds and sea obey him.



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Susan

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:21 am


Rabbi,
Thank you for this clear-headed analysis and your willingness to stand up and say, “This isn’t right.”



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Alex Nodopaka

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:28 am


Without doubts, Mr. Barak Obama could not lead the USA to any necessary socio-politico-economical changes without a powerful supporting entourage. He does not have it due to not only his inexperience and short political tenure but also to the fact that a woman president is well overdue in a country that propounded its emancipation for a century. In Hillary Clinton we have a totally competent individual that can lead this still great nation.
The youthful faction supporting the projected idealism of Mr. Barak Obama sounds good, as romanticism always does, but this is not the right time when America can no longer afford to have more ineffective leaders after the last 8 years of debacles nearly destroyed the American image in the world.



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apricot_tea

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:29 am


I was happy to read the conclusion of this column… the title invoked a bit of fear in me! Perhaps next time it can be a bit less alarmist… I personally am a huge fan of Obama, and if you go to his web site and read the “issues” section, you will find the many, many ways he plans on making change.



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Niccolo Casewit

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:34 am


Dear Beliefnet Readers,
I am an Architect Environmentalist, the son of a Jewish Father,and a German Protestant mother, I have a brother who converted to Sufism nearly 30 years ago, and a sister who is a Methodist (PhD Scientist) who believes in evolution.
Yes, I was disappointed that Barack Obama did not have a more graceful way of addressing anti-Muslim sentiment in America and still appear to be patriotic! He might have said to the Nation: “I am proud of the heritage of my father-though I did not really know him—(What’s so bad about being Muslim? It does not imply being a terrorist!) I chose to be a Christian, and I believe that is my own personal choice.”
I pray that is what Obama really wants to say. But can’t. However, being so ambivalent about Islam does not make Obama anti-Jewish! But these are my own words……
It is important to respect that the Prophet Mohamed recognized the Seal of Abraham; He embraced all believers of “One G–” and all their Prophets–just not as Diety, not demon-ized, or idolized. As modern civilizations we must all begin to recognize this unity in diversity. By the way I am a subscriber of Buddhist,Jewish and Muslim Beliefnet emails, I consider myself Taoist.
Peace to all.



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Rabbi Benjamin Sendrow

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:36 am


Rabbi Waxman:
Beware of contrasting the best, or even the mainstream, of your party with the worst of another. Has Senator McCain made these charges against Senator Obama? Has the vicious Democratic smear machine not tried to dirty the reputation of John McCain (whom I did not support, but do respect)?
Further, is it not beneath your dignity as a rabbi to refer to the “whining” of a former President of the United States?
If you want to preach about lashon hara, I suggest you raise the level of your own rhetoric. I also suggest that a more balanced view is appropriate in a forum such as this. Or is it your intent, as a rabbi, to endorse the candidate of your choice?



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Randy

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:40 am


Here is a suggestion. Instead of listening to the political ads, anonymous emails, and insinuations in blogs that are being used for dirty politics. Why not actually research the positions that the candidates have actually taken by reviewing their records and performance with sites like the ACLU and FCNL and the candidates web sites. Too much of the time modern politics covers up and side steps the actual issues with these “dirty politics” tactics. Therefore, it is up to the voters to dig out from underneath this dirt and focus on the true issues. Please think for yourself, use the resources available to find the truth and vote based on your findings and not the mud slinging, and fear mongering that some politicians and others decide to use.



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bill patton

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:41 am


Obama has surrounded himself with such notable anti-semites as Jimmy Carter,Zbignew Brzinski and Jimmy Baker.
Baker still has an office in Riyaad, Saudi Arabia and his law firm only represents one client,the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Carter wrote a book that is decidely pro-palestinian and and received millions of dollars for the Carter library in Georgia.
Brzinski has made many overtures and comments that are obviously not favorable to Jews or Israel.
Obama is a danger to Jews everywhere… you can tell what a person is like by the people with whom he surrounds himself,
and don’t forget that Louis Farrakhan likes him too.
How any Jew can vote for Obama is beyond my imagination…The handwriting is on the wall…



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Ivar

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:49 am


After all, McCain will be on a throne, you’ll see. Democrats cannot unite by definition, always looking for something.



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whisperingwinds

posted February 26, 2008 at 11:57 am


I am sorry folks, I get so irritated by Americans complaining this person isn’t perfect so why should we vote for them? No one is perfect!
Humans are not perfect! Obama isn’t perfect and neither is Hillary.
Neither of them honestly know how to fix all the problems the current president has created. Who is going to really make change is what is important, as opposed to who is stuck in their ways and will only tell Americans what they want to hear, but it will not happen once they are in?
This country does need change! It is long….over due. It is urgent!
B.Obama has first told all Americans that the first change he would like to see implemented as the president of the USA; is by putting cameras in the Senates House. So that we can all view the individuals we voted for and see for ourselves if they are being bought; instead of doing what they always claim they will do for the People! That is of course while they are running for election. When we all know that afterwards, they very seldom hold true to their empty promises. Obama has mentioned many suggestions of what he would like to try on all facets of topics at all the open debates with Hillary on tv.
Does this mean some of his ideas will not need tweaked somewhat? No. They may. That is called trial and error. But at least unlike G.B Jr.(our current president) who loves to tell America that something doesn’t exist. Remember him nationally stating on tv how the economy is in really good shape. That we are not in a recession?
Then just a few weeks ago, he finally admits that yeah…ok, we are in a recession. So here is a lousy small amount of money coming back to you all. This is going to jump start the economy. How ignorant!
Does it mean some of Hillary’s ideas will not work either as originally planned on her end? Some of her ideas are screwy as well. Or they are not in depth enough to even really get a clear concept of what her actual game plan is. Most likely because she doesn’t know either. But she is going to tell you (the public) she does.
What I do know is: H.Clinton is whining and throwing a hissy fit, because she thought this entire campaign thus far, that she was a shoe-in! Wrong!!! Americans are finally waking up I think and realizing we need change or we are all in for a very bumpy ride.
You cannot take H.Clinton at face value (as she likes to hide behind the statement of: I have all this experience) “yeah right, on how to play the political frontal game with the public. Put on that fake face, and smile, smile and tell everyone how you are ready on day one!
Not buying into it anymore. And everyone knows Hilary wears the pants in that marriage between Bill and her. So we have already gotten a taste on the H.Clinton in the White House. Can anyone tell me what was so memorable and impressive in the achievements area that the Clinton’s time in the White House is marking history by?
{No,I am not talking about Bills activities under his desk.}
B.Obama shows the most hope in making real change. Keep in mind also the president cannot run wild without getting approval up the ranks in making changes whether they be good or bad. It is also going to take years and years to straighten out all the damage that the current president has put this country in. So the question about should Jews be afraid??
This is not Germany back in the day of Hitler. This is America, and if America can view homosexuality as just another difference in the melting pot, as teens think, “Hey being gay is the new cool!”
Don’t you think that is a silly thought then, about the Jews being afraid of Obama? American people would never allow it.



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stanleyfman

posted February 26, 2008 at 12:04 pm


Will liberal Jews ever learn the single most important lesson history has taught us? The world has been and will always be anti-semetic. The only people who tolerate us are when we have common interests. Obama & Clinton are both appeasers and will sell us out in a heartbeat. Think long and hard before you select your next President, it could be our last.



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kymberlee

posted February 26, 2008 at 12:08 pm


Whether Jew, Christian, or Muslim ALL have been deceived. What we need is to seek the Truth. Be weary of the father of lies who may present himself in any number of ways (as a daughter of lies). I am much more fearful of a lying, manipulating woman than a man who admits his mistakes. Through out the holy book there are many warnings to avoid the wrong kind of woman. I am all for a woman leader, but I fear that the wrong woman with the wrong spirit will lead us far away from the path in a much more sneaky and subtle way.
Our country over all is discusting in the sight of the Lord, look at what we All have done with the blessings that have been given. Whoa unto All of us, for all have taken the name of the Lord in vain (twisting the truth for our own agenda) and worshiped false gods. We are all lovers of self and seekers of pleasure.
What we need is a leader who is not afraid of the Truth, for the Truth will set us free. What we need is a leader who seeks the Lord, for the Great I Am is much more powerful than any religion. “Your ways are not My ways sayeth the Lord. My ways are higher than your ways”



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BarryB

posted February 26, 2008 at 12:17 pm


Both sides of my family are Holocaust refugees, and I have many relatives living in Israel. I take all of this very, very seriously.
And I am supporting Obama wholeheartedly, with my money and my time.
If you delve into his past, you find that so much of what has been said is lies. The school he attended, as a boy, was just a school in a predominantly Islamic country (Indonesia), not a training camp for terrorists. Long before he started his campaign for president, he had established good ties to the Jewish community in Chicago. And on, and on– and the Simon Wiesenthal Center has issued a statement that, without naming Obama, has decried the smear campaign. The top media strategist in Obama’s campaign, a long-time confidant who also worked on his previous campaigns for the Illinois Legislature and the U.S. Senate, is Jewish!
He has established a strong reputation for being able to get things done, by crossing party lines and negotiating solutions that work for both sides in a controversy. Does this suggest anything to anyone concerned about Israel’s future?
Would he have more inherent credibility with the Palestinians than any other candidate, and isn’t it true that he is drawing more and more of the Arab-Americans into his camp? Of course. This is *not* something to be feared! For too long, the U.S. has been seen in the Arab world, rightly or wrongly, as rubber-stamping Israel’s position. Obama can end this, he can be truly heard by the Palestinians — and he will tell them that they must clean up their own house as well, and that they cannot expect a solution that does not give *both* sides enough of what they need. Clinton is old news, and McCain says he will keep American soldiers in Iraq indefinitely, and neither of them will be able to help Israel find lasting peace.
I truly believe that America — and Israel — need Barack Hussein Obama in the White House.



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Nathan

posted February 26, 2008 at 1:07 pm


While I read this article, I harkened back to the naivety of the Jews in Europe when the first rumblings of the Nazi’s sent fear in only a few, while others said, it is nothing more than the typical antisemitism we always live with. Well history shows that most of the naive perished. I think it is time for a true, and unbaised review of Mr. Obama, so that we either put an end to the rumours, or find out the facts, and if they lead one to believe this man is antisemetic, and hence bad for the Jews and Israel, voice your concerns with your vote!



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Sherri

posted February 26, 2008 at 1:08 pm


Ragen has ONLY given the facts. That you are comfortable lessening their impact is your problem. Like when you quote her as saying Obama wants to dialogue with Muslims. What she did say was that Obama would dialog with Ahmadinejad. You may not have a problem with that. This time in Jewish history is a time where it’s becoming more and more clear that Israel and so many Jews are like an abused woman. After so many years of being told how horrible we are, many of us, like the abused and beaten down wife, believe it; and no matter what the villains promise us and how they’ve all been broken, no matter how many terrorists we let out of jail to have another go at it–and they have,without getting even one man–Jonathan Pollard–who’s long since served his time out of jail in return; Sure, we’ll throw thousands of Jews out of their homes and businesses so that murderers can have better aim at our people in Sderot; Go ahead and gloss over the fact that his staff is made up of acknowledged anti semites. But, ah yes, that’s if we speak about Jews. Classic abused wife. Wake up…Before it’s too late.



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shmuely

posted February 26, 2008 at 1:15 pm


I believe Obama is just too shady of a character and too inexperianced to be President of the United States. He speaks of change the same way that Jimmy Carter did and look where it got us!



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Julie Boe

posted February 26, 2008 at 1:23 pm


Wake up! Open your eyes! Barack Hussein Obama is NOT the right person for our nation or for Israel. He is a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and would easily sell out. It is frightening to see him leaping around on stage, waxing poetic. Smooth as silk. Yes, I am very afraid. He is exactly what the extremist Muslim world ordered up. I ask my fellow Jewish comrades to be ever mindful and not to get sucked in. This is a crucial time in history, and we cannot allow the unthinkable to ever happen again.



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Anonymous

posted February 26, 2008 at 1:44 pm


I am not crazy about Obama, however, there is no evidence that he is anything other than what he says, a Christian who belongs to a main line Protestant Church. It is likely that should he be elected he will continue the same policies towards Israel that every President since the six day war of both parties have pursued. He will be supportive of Israel while trying to keep the Saudi’s and other Arab powers reasonably happy so that the oil will continue to flow.
The fact that the father who abandoned him and his mother was Muslim is meaningless. The fact that his father left him, may not be. Although, I have no idea how it may have affected him.
I am also not crazy about Clinton. But lets face it, Clinton and Obama are the only two Democrats left in this Presidential primary race and there is absolutely nothing to indicate that McCain will do half as good a job for the economy, for trade, for our foreign relations, for Jews or for Israel than either Obama or Clinton. So I will happily vote in November for either Obama or Clinton. There are no perfect candidates because there are no perfect people.



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Rob Lawson

posted February 26, 2008 at 2:52 pm


A thoughtful, gracious, and appropriate reflection on the implications of the rhetoric of aspersions.
Unfortunately, the quest for political power tends to generate such rhetoric, to the diminution
of those who use such rhetoric and those who support it. Hillary is appearing ever more desperate
in her efforts to chip away at Obama’s image, while adducing less for her own cause. This is a bad
sign for her campaign, alas.



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Not Jewish

posted February 26, 2008 at 2:52 pm


It is amazing to me that people look to others, not even members of their own group, for salvation. To expect Obama to be understanding of the plight of Jews in America is akin to expecting Bill Gates to understand the plight of the poor. He’s trying… what more can anyone ask? He has a lot of differing opinions to weigh, and the plight of his fellow African-American citizens is going to probably be a bit more of a topic of discussion. If the Jewish community needs a champion… then elect one. Your vote counts, opinions are fleeting. Like this one.



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Milton Scott

posted February 26, 2008 at 2:53 pm


I wish both candidates well; they both seem to have genuinely good desires to want to serve America. If anyone possesses any information which might paint a different picture of each candidate, please serve it up for public scrutiny. However, verifiable facts please!



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Al Eastman

posted February 26, 2008 at 5:20 pm


Fear B. Hussein Obama? That is the wrong verb. I think we should look at his empty rhetoric, his vague promises and his voting record. Those of you who are comfortable with the most leftist voting member of the current U S Senate, by all means vote for him and his populist/socialist stance. If you want a government that will be everything to everyone, Obama is the man for you. I remember JFK, and this man is no JFK, he’s more of a leftist version of McGovern.
To me, there is no viable Blue candidate. Neither of the two Northern Senators, the one with the Muslim name and the one who hugged Muslim Arafat’s wife, bode well for either the USA or Israel. Some of you may not care about ALL the rights we have in the first ten amendments, but these two have a track record of wanting to eliminate 10% of them. And before any of you start in about the First under the current administration, please give examples (including verifiable names, dates, etc.) of those who have been victimized.
On the other hand, if you want the opportunity to succeed (or fail) on your own merits, want lower taxes, want NOT to pay for those unwilling to help themselves, vote for McCain… (NOT MY CHOICE in the primaries)
In closing, any of you who feel that you should pay MORE in taxes, please feel free to write a check to the U S Treasury for the amount you wish to donate as a protest to President Bush’s reduced income taxes.



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Scott R.

posted February 26, 2008 at 5:33 pm


Obama is a mmeber of the United Church of Christ. I know the UCC intimately (don’t ask). The leadership of the UCC HATES Israel and wants a one-state solution. It filters down to the congregations.
This is the Xianity that Obama has imbibed.



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Seamus MacNemi

posted February 26, 2008 at 5:41 pm


I suppose that this is all very interesting for those who wish to live their lives in a perpetual soap opera but to my own mind it represents only a sordid attempt to assume some sort of legitimacy in the eyes of the citizenry. I wouldn’t follow either of them to the corner grocery.



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jan elfman

posted February 26, 2008 at 5:58 pm


I am Jewish, I am a lberal, I am voting for Senator Obama. If Hillary Clinton wins the nomination, I will be honored and proud to vote for her. I couldn’t be happier with these two choices. Thank God, we’re almost there!



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F. Marx

posted February 26, 2008 at 6:38 pm


One thing for sure, Barrack Obama is a controversial figure. I voted for him in my state primary. I believe I will vote for him when it comes election time because I am tired of the oligarchy that’s been created in the past 20+ years. Yes, oligarchy, change parties or names but it is still the same “good ol’ boys” that have been running the country. We Are All being sold down the river unless we stand up to be heard. Obama gives us that opportunity.
We must choose whether we want to be run by the same type of people we already are aware of or someone that is new and ‘untried’. BUT, we don’t have to heave a sigh once the polls are closed and say “okay, I’ve done my duty” and walk away from it all. We must remain vigilant. DID we choose the right person or is this person going to turn around and do something unexpected? We don’t know, but we watch and make sure that we we expect to happen is what comes about.
I am curious to know what a black man with a muslim father and an upper middle? class white mother has to say about foreign policy–he’s had more experience outside the United States in a normal capacity than most of us-or even most of the people that are running this country have had. This gives him a wider world view than any other candidate. We maintain our vigilance and make sure he doesn’t do any back door deals.
I am curious to know what a senator with relatively small experience and just barely old enough to even remember the last big recession we had is going to do with the economy. The other candidates already know how to cover things up until somebody else gets into power before it collapses-you can’t tell me the Clintons didn’t see the one in 2001 coming. We watch him and offer solicited or unsolicited advice if it looks like he may be in a bind.
Just Remember everybody, this country is a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. WE are not secular, sided, or worried about our own self righteousness. WE must pull together for the sake of the country as it is OUR Posterity that inherits this world.



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Anonymous

posted February 27, 2008 at 12:49 am


I think everyone should have second thoughts about Obama. Yesterday I heard segments of a speech he was making, wondering who wrote his script? The way he was talking, and what he was saying made me think he was about to quote the late Martin Luther King – I have a dream…



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ALIEN

posted February 27, 2008 at 1:22 am


Last two debates between Clinton and Obama clearly shown who is who.
How can we let Hillary to lead the country if she is like a chameleon?
NAFTA was good for her, when Bill Clinton signed it and now, that it is unpopular, it already became bad?
She tells various groups of people what they want to hear and doesn’t mind even, when she says directly opposite things. She doesn’t want to acknowledge the truth: her healthcare plan is one more mandatory monthly bill to all of us, despite of our income. She tells, that Obama’s plan “will leave 15 mln. Americans uncovered, but avoids any details to proof her statement. It looks like all she wants right now is just to stop Obama, whatever it will take. If she is capable of those dirty games now, what she will be capable of if she will become our next President ???
Think about it!



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Rabbi Benjamin Sendrow

posted February 27, 2008 at 2:14 am


Al Eastman invokes the name of JFK, and says that Obama is no JFK. Let’s take this a little further for the benefit of those who want to see Obama as the second coming of Jack Kennedy.
1. JFK believed in a colorblind meritocracy. Today, Republicans believe in colorblind meritocracy; the Democratic party believes in affirmative action.
2. JFK believed “a rising tide floats all boats,” which is to say he believed in supply-side economics. Today, Republicans believe in supply-side economics. The Democratic party disparages it as “trickle-down” economics.
3. JFK believed in tax cuts, so much so that economists have written on what they describe as the “JFK-Reagan-Bush” model.
4. Read JFK’s magnificent inaugural address. Read his words about bearing any burden, paying any price, etc., to ensure the cause of liberty around the world.
5. JFK said in that speech that only when we were fully armed could we be sure that nuclear weapons would not be used–that’s how Reagan brought down Communism.
6. JFK said that a missile strike strike from Cuba against any nation in the Western Hemisphere would be taken as an act of war against the USA by the USSR. Does that remind you of Carter? Clinton? No–it is the precursor to the Bush Doctrine.
JFK is my political (not moral) hero. I believe in his political values, theories, and views. I am not simply caught up in the image of Camelot. Those who would compare Obama to JFK cite only one similarity: thus far, Obama seems to be able to inspire, and JFK could certainly do that.
But when it comes to his politics, the fact is they are no longer the values of his party, but the values of the Republican party. I am married to the values, not the label “Democrat.” I will admit that it was emotionally very difficult to come to terms with the reality that the Democratic party no longer represented my views. But as it has been said, I did not leave the party, the party left me.
If one is true to the values of the JFK Democrat, today that person votes Republican. Al Eastman is right. Obama is no Jack Kennedy, and the Democratic party of Obama and the Clintons is not the Democratic Party of JFK.



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Juls

posted February 27, 2008 at 6:59 am


Is anyone concerned that Obama was born and schooled at a Radical muslim school? Obama supports illegal immigrants having driving permits- which is against the law…what kind of President supports the law being broken?
THe fact that he was an ex-drug user isn’t enough for me to pass judgement on him- but the fact that within his foundation he was schooled as a radical muslim worries the heck out of me. He will have sympathies for the middle eastern way to think (islamic radicalism) and his parents are also muslims. Maybe in the middle east I can see this man in office, but not in the White House.



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Amichi

posted February 27, 2008 at 9:26 am


As far as Obama, anyone whom has garnished such media attention and has movie stars drooling mindlessly over him, has been hailed as the “messiah” and has no real experience that I can tell, is SUSPECT. This guy is a plant by the establishment, they are throwing a bone to those who say they want change. New boss same as the old boss most likely. Obama’s voting record is far to the left but now that he has been bought and paid for, I suspect he will change his tune. He and Hillary want to pull us out of Iraq, fine but there will be chaos when we leave and a power vacuum to be filled by the strongest. For those of you who are ignorant of the Arab way, read Uris’ “The Haj” and learn something. Anyway, yes Brothers and Sisters we are all tired of cronyism that has been the way of Washington. I am tired of high taxes and don’t want anyone dictating to me anything about Healthcare, like I was some small grade school child. Yes, we must take the broom of reform and sweep Washington clean. Therefore, I am voting for Ron Paul, the only candidate with a solid conservative record. Sorry boys, we Jews in rural West Texas ain’t your ordinary liberal type. We want Kinky Friedman for Governer and President.



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Roger

posted February 27, 2008 at 11:11 am


Considering that muslims have boasted about Islam being the fastest growing religion in the world,and especially in the US,it reminds me that muslims have foretold that in the future there would be a muslim president in the white house and the muslim flag with crescent moon will replace Old Glory. This is something Americans shold be aware of. Even his name Obama brings about some kind of restlessness to one’s mind. What does this name stand for? The guy spent three years in a Madras in Indonesia (a muslim country). The man is sorrounded by people who hate Israel and his pastor from his church is anti-semitic who has said that no corporation should have business ties with Israel (is this a pro muslim agenda?) What I know is that America is on a decline as a world power since America has requested Israel to divide the land when the Bible forbids this. So, imagine this: a pro muslim president in the white house paying no attention to Iran’s threats against Israel. Imagine Iran launching the Armaggedon (since Ahmedinajet believes in the return of the Mahdi by ushering the Armageddon, and the Mahdi, is not the Moshiach!)So, Americans will make a big blunder if they vote for this gentleman…who will the next president of the USA after Obama? NOBODY…there will be no USA! May God help us.



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Jules

posted February 27, 2008 at 4:30 pm


Rabbi Waxman is absolutely correct. The commentor “Juls” apparently did not pay attention. Obama was NOT “born and schooled at a radical Muslim school”. That is a lie. Obama’s father (who left when he was 2) and his stepfather were Muslim. His mother and he are Christian. And “Muslim” should not be considered a bad word. When he was young for a few years he attended a secular school in Indonesia in which a majority of the students happened to be Muslim. His school can only be considered Muslim if the public school I attended in the United States can be considered a Christian school because a majority of the students were Christian. Let’s knock of the attempts at character assassination by religion and look at the issues and the character of the man. He is the only candidate left with enough character for me to be proud to vote for as my president.



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Elaine

posted February 27, 2008 at 5:18 pm


Barak Obama is the only hope left for the world. Do not be misled into believing the right wing clatter. They will do all they can to defeat the Democratic candidate no matter who that is, and it had better be Obama or we are dead meat. Listen to the CNN background peice on Obama. He cares. He has not taken money from Lobbyists and he is on the verge of reaching 1,000,000 donors with an average donation of $109. That is democracy at work, folks.



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Charles W

posted February 27, 2008 at 6:14 pm


How is it that otherwise intelligent individuals fall for the nonsense that gets cycled around about Barack Obama being either a muslim in hiding or some sort of secret evil sleeper cell? Read either of his books and you will see clearly why this man is attracting millions of
Americans to vote for him in spite of such moronic attacks.
As for JFK, putting aside for the moment his deplorable tendency to commit adultery with separate women as often as three times a day during his campaign, have we forgotten who got us into Vietnam, the Bay of Pigs, his brother’s early tendency to foster assasination of foreign leaders on an anti-communist whim, etc.?
Look, I think JFK was, in the end, a pretty fine President, mostly because of his vision and leadership. But I do believe that Mr. Obama has the makings of a potentially great President. He has the evenness of Lincoln and the sensitivity of Kennedy without the nastiness of Nixon or the manipulativeness of Clinton. On top of that, he’s smart and street smart. This is the kind of experience that matters.
As for his relations to Israel, he is a true fan of Israel’s enormous accomplishments and a true friend who will be honest and supportive to the end. Don’t judge him by Farrakhan just as you shouldn’t judge McCain by the lunatic fringe DJs who introduce him or Clinton by the occasionally shrill fringe covens who support her. In American politics, there are more than enough nutjobs to pass around. Look into the candidate’s heart and forget the garbage that is passed around.
Charles W



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Ray Rashied

posted February 27, 2008 at 6:17 pm


Thank you for your well written comments. As an American born and raised Muslim, I particularly appreciate the words: “Brandishing the label “Muslim” as though it were a dirty word (a politically correct term for ‘terrorist’?) is pure bigotry.” These words well describe the quandry that I often find myself in, especially since the tragic events of 9/11. This is the deeply hidden meaning insinuated every time someone ‘accuses’ Senator Obama or anyone else of being a Muslim. I realize that Senator Barack Obama is a Christian, and as a Muslim, I support Senator Obama. We do not pick our Presidents based on their religion, but on their ability to adhere to our Constitution, which guarantees our right to practice whatever religion we may happen to subscribe to.



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paulbg

posted February 27, 2008 at 6:30 pm


Rabbi Sendrow says “Republicans believe in colorblind meritocracy; the Democratic party believes in affirmative action.” But in our lifetime, the GOP has consistently fought all efforts to achieve colorblind meritocracy. Remember the Florida voter purges in 2000? They weren’t targeted at whites, only at brown- and black-skinned people. Look at the current administration — with a few token exceptions, they’re all white men. What has really helped people get ahead under the current administration is connections — if you know the right people, it doesn’t matter that your APC is made of tin foil or your plane won’t fly. “Heck of a job, Brownie!”
Rabbi Sendrow says “Republicans believe in supply-side economics. The Democratic party disparages it as ‘trickle-down’ economics.” The bottom line, is has it worked? And the answer is that Reagan’s voodoo economics, taken to its extreme by Bush/Cheney, has made the rich richer and the poor poorer and squeezed the middle class. If you’re trying to work your way up, the GOP is no friend of yours, but if you have your first billion and you crave another, they will be happy to help.
Rabbi Sendrow says “JFK believed in tax cuts, so much so that economists have written on what they describe as the ‘JFK-Reagan-Bush’ model.” — All tax cuts are not created equal. Bush/Cheney have focused on huge giveaways to the rich, with token dribble to the great unwashed to keep them from rising up. If you want to improve our economy and stimulate creativity, you don’t give all the incentives to the fatcats.
Rabbi Sendrow says “Read JFK’s magnificent inaugural address. Read his words about bearing any burden, paying any price, etc., to ensure the cause of liberty around the world.” — That’s why I’m working to elect Democrats. Because the GOP is not interested in liberty or justice; they just want to make profitable deals with petty tyrants like Musharraf for their friends at Halliburton etc. Look at the widely circulated photo of Donald Rumsfeld shaking hands with Saddam Hussein — we all knew he was evil, but Rummy didn’t care, as long as he played ball (and not a moment longer). Morality has never been a factor with these people; the business about “cleaning up Iraq” was just a sop to the saps.
Rabbi Sendrow says “JFK said in that speech that only when we were fully armed could we be sure that nuclear weapons would not be used–that’s how Reagan brought down Communism.” But [i]Reagan[/i] did not bring down Communism; that’s the rooster taking credit for the dawn. If Reagan had never been born and never spent a penny on his obscenely bloated war budget, the Soviet Union would still have collapsed on its own, because it was rotten to the core.
Rabbi Sendrow says “JFK said that a missile strike strike from Cuba against any nation in the Western Hemisphere would be taken as an act of war against the USA by the USSR. Does that remind you of Carter? Clinton? No–it is the precursor to the Bush Doctrine.” My reading of the Bush Doctrine is “we will use any excuse to attack friend and enemy alike, and the only ones who are safe are the ones who sell their countries out to us.” The Bush/Cheney approach to defense has completely ignored the critical factors that help keep us safe: identifying and prioritizing real threats (they attack bystanders while ignoring real enemies); selecting beneficial and attainable objectives (their goals have been irrelevant to national security and infeasible as well); and developing and implementing effective strategies and tactics to achieve those objectives (need I say more?). As a result, we are less safe for their floundering and lying, but all the Sturm und Drang have fooled some Americans into thinking they were actually accomplishing something.
Juls asks, “what kind of President supports the law being broken?” This is such a fat pitch I couldn’t resist. Hel-LO-ooo… THE [u]CURRENT[/u] ONE!!! Bush is the best example of a president who thinks he’s above the law, and he puts it in writing on a regular basis with his “signing statements.”



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Ray Rashied

posted February 27, 2008 at 6:30 pm


After reading Rogers post (above), I felt the need to add to my earlier comment. I was born in the Cradle of Liberty, Philadelphia, PA. I am proud of that fact. I love this town, this state, and this country. I have served this country as a member of the U.S. Air Force. I believe in the ideal of America, and while we have yet to truly reach that ideal, I think it is still the greatest country on Earth. That said, I am a Muslim. Your comments are paranoid and misguided.



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Dave

posted February 27, 2008 at 8:02 pm


It was very interesting how Obama answered the debate queestion about Farrakhan:
1/ First he said he mentioned the support he had among Jews (implying that only Jews would be against anti-semitism). He didn’t mention anything about his own spiritual mentor who is a friend of Farrakhan. He didn’t mention anything about Farrakhan’s antiwhite racism (‘Doctor Yakub’ inventing whites and all that), and how whites are devils.
To be fair no one has mentioned Farrakhan’s anti-white racism, but Obama could have mentioned that he didn’t think badly about whites. Of course then he would have had to explain the lack of any of his white relatives being anywhere near him.
2/ His maternal (white) grandmother is still alive, but I’ve never seen any picture of him as an adult dressed in ‘white clothes’ with her. Apparently Kenya and not Kansas is his only ancestral home.
3/ As I understand it the offspring of a Muslim man is considered a Muslim. If Obama is a Christian that means he has apostasized form Islam. I have not heard a single Muslim mention this apostasy. Therefore either Muslims don’t believe that he has apostasized (ie is still a Muslim), or thye don’t care.



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Ray Rashied

posted February 27, 2008 at 10:36 pm


In response to Dave;
1)To imply that Senator Obama has to answer someone’s false allegation with a statement of how he feels about ‘white people’ is silly. It also implies that a person is guilty until proven innocent. In America, the opposite is true. If you are the accuser, you have the burden of proof.
2)A Muslim, even if born into a Muslim family, is not even allowed to take the ‘Kalima Shahada’ or the ‘Declaration of Faith’, until he or she is a teenager. While the children of any parent is, by virtue of the parent, considered of the same religion as the parent, Muslims must make a conscious declaration of their faith when they are mature enough to make that declaration. So, as you understand it, you’re wrong.
3)Are you aware of the meaning of the word ‘Semite’? According to Wikipedia, “The term Semite means a member of any of various ancient and modern peoples originating in southwestern Asia, including the Akkadians, Canaanites, Phoenicians, Hebrews, and Arabs.” This means that the Arabs, many of whom are Muslims, are also Semites! So, among those who are or should be against anti-semitism, you should include at least the (Arab) Muslims.
4) As an African American, I have whites in my ancestry. Do I have to find the white descendents of my foreparents and pose for pictures with them with ‘white clothes’ on to show that I am not against white folks? (Actually, that would be pretty interesting, but thats another story) BTW, by white clothes, you wouldn’t happen to mean sheets… ? Just checkin…
Ignorance will no longer do. We need the truth. Yes we do. Yes we can. Yes we will!!!



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Rebeca Barragan

posted February 27, 2008 at 10:45 pm


Rabbi Waxman, thank you very much for such an insightful article/comment about the increased nastiness surrounding this Presidential Nominating campaign.
It is sad to see how people will grasp at anything to get their way. I believe much of the ugliness surrouning the unfair and innacurate accusations made about Barack Obama, is unfortunately directly related with the increasing fear many short sighted people have about people who are not like them (gender, race, ethnicity and religion). Anybody in the public eye who does not “fit” the typical and stereotypical description of what a person in a particular position should “look like” i.e. President of the United States, will be demonized by people who believe “their kind” are “superior” and therefore must try to disqualify anyone not fitting their stereotype.
Bottom line is that Barack Obama is the best hope this country has at normalizing most eveything that ails our country. The people who have difficulty accepting someone who might be different from them as their President, will just have to learn to get over it, if in fact they do love their country and want the best for America and the rest of the world.



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Amichi

posted February 28, 2008 at 10:10 am


Bottom line for me: Obama is just too slick, too polished, and too much like a Rorschach card to be credible. Many seem to be projecting their hopes and dreams on this guy whose record is as mercurial as an inkblot or cloud. He had more abstentions than votes when in the Illinois legislature. Get a grip. As far as religion goes, Xtians, Moslems, all either want us dead or converted, especially the C of C where LaBomba attends. Peanut Carter has already gone mad, you can see it in his eyes when he lifts his lids to make a point, weirdo, and he is some kind of guru for Mr. Obama. Maybe Bloomberg will change his mind and run or even Lieberman. Then we may have someone who actually will not sell us out to the oil interests, the rest of this latest crop, Dem and Repubs are one in the same. Hey how about Kinky Friedman.



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Dave

posted February 28, 2008 at 11:02 am


In response to Ray
1/ While most African-Americans have some White ancestry (I believe that estimate for the average African-American is 20%), very few have living White ancestors. Obama does not need to ‘look’ for his White grandmother. I have never seen a picture of Obama as an adult with his living White grandmother (or any other White relative), while he has gone overseas to visit his Black grandmother and other Black relatives.
2/ Still not mention about his spiritual mentor and his comments.
3/ I am well aware that Arabs are Semites. But the term ‘anti-Semite’ was created in the 19th c. only to refer to Jews. I have never heard of a person with specifically anti-Arab prejudices ever being referred to as an anti-Semite.
4/ ‘Yes we can’? Can what? This is the kind of high school type cheer we should be getting over when adulthood takes over. I don’t recall any recent President with a motto, at least not one so vaucuous.



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BarryB

posted February 28, 2008 at 12:20 pm


In response to Ray — the only problem I have with what you’ve said is that you’re messing with well-settled usage of “anti-Semite.” But I very much agree with you that it is time that we move past ignorance. I believe that it is time for us to find ways to break down the walls that separate us, rather than to build them higher; it is time for Abraham’s grandchildren to start acting as one family again, and live in peace.
Of all the candidates available, I think Obama offers the best shot at achieving peace in the Middle East. His own Islamic heritage is a *small* part of that. Much more to the point is that he has demonstrated an exceptional ability to negotiate “across party lines” and find a way to make things happen, solutions that everyone can live with. Yes, some of his advisors are not friendly to Israel — but there are others who are not mentioned in the smear articles, who are very much pro-Israel. Do the research! Think for yourself!!
Obama is willing to have face-to-face talks with the little Hitler who is president of Iran — this is not a negative. Let the man see in Obama’s eyes the hard reality that this country, as part of the international community, will do whatever is necessary to keep Iran from building nuclear weapons. The people who criticize Obama for this also were opposed to letting little Hitler speak at Columbia University last year — and the event turned into a triumph of free speech (as witnessed by the fact that the extremists use the event as one more reason to preach hate against the U.S.!)
We cannot, as Jews, as friends of Israel, as Americans, turn a blind eye to the fact that our foreign policy over the past 40 years or more has made the United States the “Great Satan” to the extremist Islamic militants. Terrorists are cheap — for every one that we kill, a dozen more are recruited.
U.S. Middle East policy has not worked, it is not working. It is time for a change. For the sake of this country, and for Israel’s sake.



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Anonymous

posted February 28, 2008 at 3:01 pm


Dave
You haven’t been looking enough. Lots of Obama’s white relatives came out to support him in Kansas, even ones he had never met and didn’t know. There were even a number of interviews of his cousins on NPR.
Although, Obama is a Christian, it would not bother me if he were a Muslim, a Bhudist, a Hindu, an Atheist, or anything else. Here in America we believe in freedom of religion and that there shall be no religious test for public office. There is nothing un-American about being a Muslim, there is nothing un-American about being Jewish, there is nothing un-American about being a Catholic, etc…
The fact that the minister in Obama’s choice says something with which Obama does not agree doesn’t bother me either. The Rabbi of my congregation holds all sorts of view with which I do not agree, so what?
Rabbi Sendrow
Any more of these Republican tax cuts and I am going to go broke! Those famed Bush tax cuts, meant a couple less dollars I paid to the Feds, but since that meant increased mandates on the States and cuts in State Aid, my State taxes went up, and since the State tried to limit those tax increases they passed on the mandates to the local County and Municipal governments and cut local aid so my local taxes went up. Yours went up too. When you add the fact that Bush spent money he didn’t have and instead printed millions dollars, thus making your money less valuable, you took a beating from the Bush tax cuts. Wake up!



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Dave

posted February 28, 2008 at 7:03 pm


1/ Google “Madelyn Payne Dunham” (Obama’s maternal grandmother). The most recent photo I found of him and her in the same photo comes from 1982. Nothing more recent. She lives currently in Hawaii, not Kansas. Those ‘Kansas relatives’ could be anybody, from distant relatives to total fakes. Madelyn Payne Dunham isn’t.
2/ There is nothing wrong with being a Muslim. There is something wrong with being a Muslim and pretending to be a Christian. That is the issue.
3/ If I attended a congregation whose rabbi I differed with on any very important issue I would go find another congregation.
4/ Governors and mayors always blame higher levels of government for being ‘forced’ to raise taxes. The northeast, for example has much
higher state and local taxes than the rest of the country even though the whole country has the same Federal government.
5/ Obama is planning to do a Chamberlain with the Ahmadinajad. McCain chooses the Churchillian approach. Guess one is better.
NJ for example has corrupt politicians and governors who promise not to raise taxes, and then raise them at the first chance. This is Bush’s fault?



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Sarah

posted February 29, 2008 at 12:46 pm


As a Jew, it truly saddens me to read many of the posts in response to this article. As a Jew, I am appalled at the ease with which so many of us are so willing to judge a candidate based on the minister of his church or who he may have an association with. By doing this we are no better than those who have reviled us for centuries.
It is extremely dangerous to make a decision about who to vote for based on the belief that a candidate MAY associate with people who have made a comment about Jews or Israel. Without open discussions and different points of view nothing changes. Listening to someone else’s opinion does not mean that you will begin to believe in or act on that perspective.
To those of you who would rather vote for John McCain than see Barak Obama become president because of what you think he believes consider the following:
a. McCain is not only anti-choice but wants Roe v. Wade overturned.
b. McCain believes in staying the course in Iraq. This policy over the long term is far more dangerous for Israel than what you THINK Barack Obama MAY do. The US is hated by much of the world because we are in Iraq. Our armed forces are stretched to the limit and we might not be able to offer Israel any help if it was needed.
No election is about one topic and as American Jews our first priority should be what is best for all US citizens first and the rest of the world second. Only when we get a leader who cares about all citizens can we be secure that this country will do what is right in the rest of the world.
I wonder what the Israeli’s feel about Barack Obama.



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Anonymous

posted February 29, 2008 at 12:47 pm


Dave
Stop drinking the cool aid.
Obama is a Christian and not a Muslim. He is not pretending to be a Christian he is one. Every person ever elected to the Presidency in the US has been a Christian. The fact that they have all been Christians shows that being a Christian is no guarantee that they will do a good job, behave properly, or look out for the interests of the people as opposed to the special interests a.k.a. the corporate elite.
I, like most people, have relatives I don’t often see and even a few I don’t much like. Should the fact that I don’t see one of my relatives or that one of my relatives may hold a differing political philosophy serve as a bar to my running for or holding political office? Should it bar you? Of course not. It shouldn’t bar Obama either. Your argument is silly.
If you had to find a synagogue at which you agreed with the Rabbi on all points, unless you had no opinions or thoughts of your own, you would be faced with an impossible task. Besides, as you well know there are many reasons one chooses to affiliate with a congregation, the Rabbi, Minister, etc… is just one of them and often not a particularly important reason.
Governors and Mayors have good reason to blame superior Governments for adding to there tax burden. They do. When the federal government mandates things such as Bush’s All Children Left Behind program , or the many Anti Terrorism mandates and does not supply the funds for these programs, what do you think a Governor or Municipal Government is supposed to do? Governments can not provide services for free, and that includes services which they are obligated by law to provide. By the way New Jersey is one of the most honest states. New Jersey has enacted “pay to play” regulations which either prohibit contributions by suppliers of services to governments or require them to disclose those contributions and require the government to openly bid for the services.
When the costs of goods and services rise for you, they also rise for your State and Local Governments. Rising prices cause rising taxes. Rising demands for services cause rising taxes. Rising mandates
cause rising taxes. Failure of superior governments to deliver services demanded by the citizenry cause rising taxes on the State and local government level. Ronald Regan was wrong. There is no such thing as a free lunch.
McCain is the ultimate appeaser. He has changed all of his most cherished believes in order to secure the Republican nomination. He has flipped on torture, he has flipped on military policy, he has flipped on the place of religion in the governmental sphere, he has flipped, flopped, twisted and turned on the double talk express. You can’t trust a man who is unwilling to hold true to his most treasured beliefs.



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Al Eastman

posted February 29, 2008 at 2:46 pm


Some of the “discussions” here reminded me of the L.B. Johnson-Barry Goldwater Campaign of 1964. My Democratic Party loving relatives would darn near foam at the mouth at the mention of Barry’s name. They would invariably tell me “He will escalate the war in Vietnam.” Gee, they got LBJ and what did HE do??? However THAT is not the type of discussion for this blog.
As for the pros and cons of supply side vs demand side economics, instead of parroting your favorite political hacks, read Milton Friedman’s books. They should still be in most public libraries. I will grant you that a treatise on economics is not nearly as entertaining as reading the latest mis-steps of Paris Hilton or the daughters of the Speers family, but hey try it, you might learn something.



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Dave

posted March 1, 2008 at 10:48 pm


1/ Yes people can dislike many of their relatives, but someone who dislikes/doesn’t want to have anything to do with their grandmother has something wrong with them.
2/ As I said you can disagree with your rabbi on many things, but if you disagree with your rabbi on important things you belong in a different congregation.
3/ Barack Obama did (not may have) belonged (not associated with) to a congregation lead by a Farrakhanite. Indeed he named his book ‘The audacity of hope’ after one of his sermons.
4/ In NJ the Democrat Governor did the obvious Democrat thing when faced with federal mandates to combat terrorism. He hired a guy he knew who looked cute to him, and who he wanted to have sex with. That’s how NJ, ‘one of the most honest states’ deals with Federal mandates.
5/ BTW NCLB was originally a Ted Kennedy mandate.
6/ If States and municipalities want to reduce their costs they can just negotiate contracts with their public sector unions that are no more generous than the private sector gives.
7/ The ‘world hating America’ predates Iraq. Bill Clinton himself want to anti-US demos in Britain during the Vietnam War.
8/ If you want to have an abortion, abort away!-no law can stop you. But as my favorite pundit says ‘the future belongs to whoever shows up for it’, and that won’t be pro-choice activists.



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