Update Hoshana Rabba 5776: R. Yanklowitz has reversed his position and I publicly apologize for attacking him on this issue.
Hehe…now I’m having some fun.
The responses to my post about organ donation have been bifurcated into two general camps. The first are academics who accuse me of jealousy and don’t deal with any of my logic, but merely fling academic jargon at me while calling me uneducated. I am uneducated, and proud of it. I have no doctorate and will never get one. They say Shmuly is amazing. They think I’m obsessed with him. The truth is I haven’t even thought of the guy for a year or more.
The last interaction I had with him was on Facebook, maybe a year ago, where he started advocating sending more tax money and deadly weapons to a bunch of Islamic terrorists right on my border (Israel) because he thought it was “social justice” to do that. So I got pissed because he was advocating putting my life in danger by putting other people’s money in the hands of insane murderers in Syria caught eating people’s hearts on camera. So I responded, saying he was irresponsible, and that arming Islamic terrorists on MY border while HE sits across an ocean is dangerous and infuriating.
So he defriended me, which was probably a good thing for my stress level, but then I saw that sycophantic hypocritical hack piece on Times of Israel, which I don’t read, but I saw this huge smug picture of Shmuly on my Facebook page and was drawn in and my fire was lit again. (Again, Shmuly did a great thing donating. Good for him. He saved a life. But he’s still a hypocrite because he is against making it legal to save so many others.)
Oh sure, he couches all of his funneling and directing of tax money to his pet causes in wonderful “social justice” language using catchphrases like “Tzedek” (justice) and “lovingkindness” and whatever other sophistry he weaves up to drug his audience into complacency with his pinpoint good deeds of selflessness. This is how you control the masses and I don’t buy it.
That brings me to the other camp of responders. Those who applauded me and thanked me for calling this fraud out, and said to me that Shmuly totally rubs them the wrong way. I AGREE. Something’s off about him. It’s a sort of overbearing fakeness couched in this overly sweet and enormously generous artificial persona, that on the very klipa (shell) of it looks so giving and wonderful, but you know there’s something dark underneath there that you dare not go near. I’ve always sensed it and it always scared the shit out of me especially because the man is so physically big and strong as well, but it only scared me subconsciously. Those who feel this know exactly what I’m talking about. It’s a sixth sense about people, some have it, some don’t.
I’m the exact opposite of Shmuly. On the outside I’m biting, sarcastic, cynical, and not very warm at all. But on the inside all I want is FREEDOM. For EVERYONE. Because I really love humanity. To know that about me, to see my deep caring for the liberty of every single person on this planet, and my insane dedication towards that goal, takes a lot of deep understanding, it takes time. But once you understand the beauty of liberty, it will make you cry in its sheer beauty and in total pain because everyone lacks it due to government. That’s what’s at my core. Don’t believe me? Fine.
Those that don’t sense this, look at his klipah (outer shell), his donating and his political work that no matter the consequences of it, people see the “motivation” behind it, the klipah, and then say whatever the consequences of it, the motivation was good so Shmuly’s an angel. Who cares about consequences, they all say. What counts is the intention. It doesn’t matter how many people die in the middle as long as you felt you were doing something good. That’s the message from our “Rabbis” these days.
Here’s one example. He destroyed Rubashkin’s because he felt the workers there were being mistreated. So he shut the place down. He makes his living destroying things that he personally finds objectionable without a second thought about the consequences of his actions.
Did he ever do a follow up on the Rubashkin workers he put out of work? (I realize that if he did, I’m going to look pretty stupid, but I’m so confident he doesn’t care, because mission accomplished he shut down Rubashkin’s, that I’m putting myself on the line here.) Did he make sure they had work to replace their jobs? Did he ever give two shits about their future? I seriously doubt it. He “ended injustice” even though those workers chose to be there and could have quit at any time, but never chose to. And nobody else cares either. It’s not about the workers. It’s about a fake persona of “justice seeking”.
Shmuly goes from cause to cause, either funneling tax money (other people’s money) or destroying entire industries. He never creates a damn thing.
It breaks my heart though. Because to see such on-the-surface superficial goodness being used so manipulatively really hurts. It just hurts.
And that takes me to defanged Rabbis. One guy contacted me on Facebook, some modern orthodox Rabbi in his words, and said that I spoke the truth, but wouldn’t be popular for going against mom-and-pop apple pie issues like organ donation.
I mean what guy in his right mind would go after a Rabbi who donated his kidney to a dying man for God’s sake and call him an immoral hypocrite? Nobody but me. NOBODY but me. The naysayers say I’m insane. I guess I am, in that sense.
More importantly, after that, I said to this Rabbi that I was looking more for notoriety than popularity. And he responded that he “can’t do controversial issues because it’s against his line of work”. How true.
And that’s the point. Chazal (the Rabbis of the Talmudic era) are very against using Torah to earn a living for that very reason. TO BE CLEAR, I am not against anyone who trades Torah for money. It is fine and good and great. My father accepts money for teaching Torah. I am alive because of that. Every Torah teacher I ever had does the same. It’s fine. (Unless it’s government money. Then it’s not fine.) I’m just saying Chazal are against it, because when you accept money to be a Rabbi, or teach Torah, you are inherently limited by your employer and you can only challenge evil so far until it threatens your job.
No paid Rabbi can go after a kidney donor and call him a hypocrite. I can. The most important thing about being a Rabbi, I think is challenging evil. But if it’s hidden by a paper thin veil of goodness that looks so beautiful, forget it. Try to lift that baby up, expose the ugliness under that shiny red sheet, and you’ll get fired in a second, and never rehired as a Rabbi anywhere, ever again.
I am not limited. I can lift up the satin red stain, because I do not accept money for teaching Torah or Rabbi’ing. I wonder if, theoretically every single paid Rabbi were suddenly unemployed, how many would be telling me that I should tone it down? They’re used to toning it down, because they have to tone it down or lose their jobs. I would be getting a lot more vocal support, because all the Rabbis would suddenly be economically able to lift up that glorious red sheet and expose the rot underneath it. They could finally talk about real stuff instead of feel-good mom-and-pop superficial vague mussar (morality speeches) that’s obvious to everyone.
I don’t have to tone it down. So I won’t. Shmuly Yanklowitz is a dangerous man who destroys without thinking, and couches it in terms of chessed (generosity) and lovingkindness. He uses tiny acts of real beautiful good (saving one life) to legitimize big acts of evil – preventing dying people from buying organs freely. And nobody sees it and I’m the only one calling out Emperor Rabbi Shmuly Yanklowitz for strutting around nude in the town square.
Finally, let’s deal with one more thing. Am I jealous of Rabbi Shmuly Yanklowitz? Do I really secretly want to be the one who bounces around trafficking tax money from cause to cause, did I really want to be the one to gloriously destroy Rubashkin’s, send money to terrorists without thinking of the consequences, force women out of work with equal-work-equal-pay schemes, and unskilled people out of the job market by jacking up minimum wage?
No. I don’t want to be any of those things. All I want to do is promote liberty. It is my single-minded insane goal in life, forever, for the rest of my life.
Shmuly is an enemy of liberty. He is a very efficient, shrewd enemy of liberty, because his causes seem so damn wonderful. But they are all based on theft, taxes, regulation, social and economic control. None of them are based on production of any kind, or standing up for the Non Aggression Principle.
And the saddest part is I bet he doesn’t even realize it. He’s not some malicious guy trying to hurt people. He’s a tinok shenishba (a baby taken captive), but instead of mi’bein hagoyim (taken captive by non-Jews), he’s mi’bein ha’academics (taken captive by academics). He has no idea of the damage he causes. He really thinks he’s doing good. Because he cannot think more than one single step deep. He sees an “injustice”, he doesn’t analyze what’s going on, he immediately wants to send weapons to syrian islamists, or destroy rubashkins, or forbid dying people from buying organs, he never thinks about or even acknowledges that there MAY BE consequences. He just attacks.
And all of the people applaud.
Last thing. Here’s proof that Shmuly is 100% against a free market in organs. Not only that, but he calls it shameful that Rabbis engaged in a black market organ trade. What does that mean? That Rabbis matched dying people with organs, and saved lives. They just got money for it. And what’s black about it? That the government says you can’t do it. And these Rabbis went against the evil laws of the Malchut (State) to save lives.
Chazal (the Rabbis of the Talmud) do not say you should not get money for organs. They DO say you should not get money for Rabbi’ing. If Shmuly thinks those kidney-trafficking Rabbis are evil for saving lives just like he did, he is even more of a hypocrite than I thought.
And if you say that those Rabbis are shameful because they broke a law and you pull dina demalchuta dina (the halachic principle that the law of the State is the law) on me, because they were not doing honest business, then as a friend of mine aptly wrote:
“When the Talmud spoke of “honest business”, it cannot possibly have meant, “obeying unjust laws”. By that logic, Shifra and Puah (the two Egyptian midwives who disobeyed Pharaoh when he ordered them to murder all newborn Israelite boys) were guilty of dishonest business practices.”
In that article, Shmuly begins by quoting the Talmud. Says Shmuly:
According to the Talmud, the very first question one can expect to be asked at the gates of heaven pertains not to belief or ritual, but to whether one acted honestly in all of one’s business dealings.
Yes. That IS the non aggression principle. That IS libertarianism. Did you steal? Did you take other people’s money without consent? Did you live off taxes? Did you destroy other people’s jobs in the name of justice without giving a damn about what happens to them next?