Monthly Archives: September 2013

Big Data Education (Joel Klein Rupert Murdoch)

So Joel Klein, who ran the New York City school system for years, is now shilling a Rupert Murdoch scheme to get tablet-technologies into the school systems. In this article by Carlo Rotella in last week’s Sunday New York Times … Continue reading

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Elephant Sukka (Talmud)

When Leo Strauss and other conservative Jewish philosophers talk about “law,” is this what they mean? Two years ago, Shai Secunda posted over at Talmud Blog this little film illustrating the discussion in the Babylonian Talmud about whether or not a … Continue reading

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Greek Wisdom — Sukkot Ecclesiastes (Ben Shahn)

(Ben Shahn, Ecclesiastes or The Preacher, 1965) Vanity of vanities! It’s Sukkot, which means time to dip into Greek Wisdom, a new more cosmopolitan paradigm for Jewish philosophy after Torah and prophecy. In this vein, I’m recommending if I haven’t already … Continue reading

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Palestine After Israel and Palestine? (2 State 1 State) (Ian Lustick)

For those who are going to argue that the 2 state solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict is a dead dog, it’s up to them to envision what then comes next, something else, a 1 state solution, how it might work … Continue reading

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My Banal Yom Kippur (100 Years After Franz Rosenzweig)

Rabbi Jeremy Kalmanofsky at Ansche Chesed reminded all of us in the kahal yesterday that this Yom Kippur, 2013, was the 100th year anniversary of the legendary visit of Franz Rosenzweig to a synagogue in Berlin. It was from there … Continue reading

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Better than Bombs (The Fall of the Assad Regime) (Abdul Rahman Al-Rashed)

Much better than bombs. Abdul Rahman Al-Rashed is no dove or accomodator when writing about Iran, Syria, Hezbollah, Hamas, and the Muslim Brotherhood. Quite the opposite. Here he is writing in the Saudi based Asharq Al Awsat (English). Backed up by … Continue reading

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Modernism and Marxism — Marshall Berman Obituary (Todd Gitlin)

Deeply touching, Todd Gitllin’s obituary online at Tablet Magazine to Marshall Berman (z”l). Berman’s All the Solid Melts in the Air, published in 1981, was still all the rage when I was in graduate school. Berman still represents a kind … Continue reading

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American Liberalism (Syria) (Yom Kippur)

Famous in among Jewish art aficionados, almost all the adult figures in Maurycy Gottlieb’s 1878 painting of Jews Praying in the Synagogue on Yom Kippur are looking around this way and that. They are either introspecting or missing the main … Continue reading

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R2P (Responsibility to Protect) Syria?

What’s wrong with human rights discourse is that it’s subject centered, focused on an already empowered subject and the subject’s actions. What gets lost is the other’s right, for instance, the right to protection from abuse. Then what? What if … Continue reading

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Putin + Assad

Holy crap, what a most revolting spectacle, the op-ed of Vladimir Putin, the butcher of Chechnya in the New York Times. What you get is pure obfuscation, this claim that it’s not clear who gassed those people, or that denial … Continue reading

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