Here’s What the Russian Hacking Complainers Are Really Saying

I’m trying not to follow this but it seems so bizarrely stupid I just can’t help it. That people are portraying that they actually believe this just confirms that we are populated with adult babies.

So here’s how I understand this. The Hitlery Clintonites are complaining that the Russians hacked the DNC and John Podesta’s emails. And that this caused Americans to vote for Trump instead of Hitlery.

OK. Let’s assume that’s 100% true.

So what they are saying is that because Russia exposed corruption in the DNC and incredibly twisted satanic stuff in Podesta’s treasure chest of disturbia plus some of Hitlery’s explicit double-talk, it’s now Russia’s fault. Americans should not have known about any of this, and if they were kept in the dark as they should have been, Hitlery would be president and all would be well. Americans should not know about the corruption and sick behavior of the upper political class and because some of it was exposed, the election is invalid.

I’m confused. Shouldn’t the Hitlery Clinton people be mad at the DNC and Podesta for being what they are, instead of blaming Russia for exposing what they are? Nobody is claiming anything that Russia supposedly hacked is fake.


Stephen Hawking Proves Even So-Called Geniuses Can Be Economically Illiterate

luddite-main_fullI’m not sure how much of a genius Stephen Hawking actually is versus how much his intellect may be inflated in the public consciousness due to his ALS and his miraculous survival with it. The moniker of smartest man alive has somehow stuck with him where I doubt 99.9% of the people who see him that way have any idea of his work aside from a Brief History of Time. That’s really all I ever read from him. Admittedly I have no mind for complex mathematics and physics.

But I do have a mind for praxeology and logic and deductive reasoning. Apparently, I’m much better at it that Stephen Hawking, who seems quite the dolt on the subject.

Yes, Hawking beats me on physics and hard sciences, 100% I concede. But he like most others suffer from the Luddite Fallacy and thinking only one step deep when it comes to simple qualitative deductive logic.

Says Hawking:

The automation of factories has already decimated jobs in traditional manufacturing, and the rise of artificial intelligence is likely to extend this job destruction deep into the middle classes, with only the most caring, creative or supervisory roles remaining.”

With not only jobs but entire industries disappearing, we must help people to retrain for a new world and support them financially while they do so,” he added.

Facepalm. The automation of anything does not lead to lasting unemployment. It never has and it never will. Factories themselves didn’t lead to the unemployment of those who make things by hand. Most of that employment merely shifted industries to making the machines. Automated factories will simply move factory workers to some other industry where labor is needed. Why does this even have to be explained to Stephen Hawking? What is the block in people’s heads that prevents them from understanding this basic truth?

It’s not an observation. It’s a logical necessity. Unemployed labor factors is a market that clears at a certain price. All markets clear by necessity, therefore all labor displaced by automation clears in some other form of employment. The only thing that can perpetuate unemployment is welfare and minimum wage, because these are coercive rather than market phenomena.

The more automation, the more labor is freed up to do other things, the higher the supply of stuff and the lower the prices of stuff. Standards of living rise. That’s what happens because of automation, so even if a group of workers is displaced into lower income jobs, the tendency is that the price of goods and services drop more relative to that drop because of the very automation that displaced them.

Typewriters didn’t lead to the end of the human race for displacing transcribers. Computers didn’t lead to the end of the human race for displacing typists. Amazon did not lead to the end of the human race for displacing brick and mortar retailers. Airplanes did not lead to the end of the human race for displacing transcontinental shipping companies. Cars did not destroy humanity by unemploying horse and buggy drivers. Computerized farming equipment and cow-driven plows. Lab grown meat will not lead to the end of the human race by unemploying cattle farmers for God’s sake man!

A cure for cancer will not lead to the end of the human race by unemploying oncologists, and a cure for ALS will not lead to the end of the human race for unemploying the manufacturers of Stephen Hawking’s specialized wheelchair.

In the absolute worst possible scenario when our entire lives are automated by machines and nobody can think of anything else that needs to be done, nobody would have to do anything anymore and we could all learn Gemara all day. Or physics. Or spend our time figuring out how to cure ALS. Or whatever.

It’s certainly an amazing thing that Stephen Hawking doesn’t get this. The phenomenon as to why he doesn’t get this should be studied. To me it is more interesting to solve than the problem of ALS, because economic illiteracy is ubiquitous and very dangerous. It leads to the outlawing of automation, which is what Hawking seems to be proposing. Doing that would kill many more people than ALS.

ALS research is part of my work, actually, since I analyze cutting-edge pharmaceutical research.

Aryeh Deri Gets Even More Evil – Requires All Jews To Give Fingerprints to the State By Force

Surprise surpirse. The biometric ID trial run was a success, and now Interior Minister Aryeh Deri, Yemach Shmo, is going to require every single Israeli citizen to give him their fingerprints by force.

I am going to say this once, and I am not saying bli neder.

I will burn my fingerprints away in acid before I give them to the State of Israel.

If Deri wants to tattoo a number on my arm, he’ll have to hold me down and put me under general anesthesia.

I urge everyone to passively fight the State on this and do not give these kappos your fingerprints of your own free will. No violence, just passive resistance. And if you have the courage to burn your fingerprints off with acid before they can take them, I would encourage that.

Absolutely no violence should be taken against Deri, but if God chooses to take him away from this world, as Pavel Chekov said to Scotty from the bowels of a nuclear wessel, “Now would be a good time.”

This does not constitute a curse against Deri, in case that is illegal. May he live forever, as Leonidas once said. I love him, of course, along with all selfless public servants. Prasied Be Their Holy Names.

Kiko Alonso, Son of a Cuban Exile, Flattens Castro Sympathizer Kaepernick to Win the Game For Miami Dolphins

Perhaps sports is more than just letting off steam.

Hours before the death of Fidel Castro, San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick defended the murderer and wore a Castro T-shirt. Miamians, and I am Miami born, celebrated Castro’s death as they rightly should.

Kaepernick was the star of the game for the 49ers, but he came up 2 yards short of tying the game with 2 seconds left. Kiko Alonso, the Dolphins linebacker, ran up from behind as Ndamukong Suh tackled from the front. Kaepernick was literally flattened by Alonzo with his legs bent back.

Kiko Alonso is the son of a Cuban exile, who celebrated the game-winning brutal tackle with his son in the locker room. Here’s the Miami Herald on what went down:

It ended with Kiko Alonso delivering the game-ending blow on Colin Kaepernick and helping deliver to the Miami Dolphins their sixth consecutive win.

And moments later, in a Dolphins locker room filled with celebration, that was Alonso proudly putting on a headband that replicated the Cuban flag and meeting with his Cuban exile father and other family members to enjoy his enormously productive day.

Castro is dead. The Dolphins won by flattening the Castro sympathizer. If God ever cares about sports, it looks like He just showed it. Check out the last play. Alonso crushes him from the top while Ndamukong Suh dives into his legs.

Trump, Kaepernick, Castro, Two Reversals

kaepernick-castro-shirtI mentioned in an earlier post that I supported Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers quarterback, for not standing during the Blood Spangled Banner. I knew it wasn’t an intellectual stance or that he necessarily understood what he was doing or even that he was doing it for the right reasons, but still it takes courage to stand up to patriotic drivel.

Now I can no longer support him, because it is clear he’s just a statist idiot who wanted the US government to do more whatever.

He was caught defending his wearing of a Fidel Castro T-shirt saying he supported Castro’s “education system”.

Pathetic. When a murderer tells educators what to do, it’s not praiseworthy. It’s akin to a murderer rounding up all farmers, killing all but one, telling the lone survivor to plant one orange tree and then people praising the dictator for producing oranges.

How many people did Castro kill? How many of them were teachers? How many teachers did he threaten if they didn’t teach how amazing Castro is? Yeah, amazing education system that one.

Just in time for the Dolphins game. In Miami, they celebrated as they should. Hopefully the Miami Dolphins, who celebrate Castro’s death appropriately and justrly, will crush Kaepernick who praised this murderer’s central planning. Dolphins just scored a touchdown as I write this. Kaepernick should retire and shut up.

Donald Trump, who I never liked, actually said the right thing about Castro. That he was a murderer and how he’s dead and that’s it.

One cheer for The Donald. If there is anything good about him, it’s that he doesn’t care about political correctness.


Aryeh Deri, Donald Trump, and Politics as a Shared National Wet Dream Nightmare

america-burningI quoted this two posts ago but it needs another splattering. Aryeh Deri, head of the asinine Shas Party, the uncontested #1 Hillul Hashem in terms of inspiring normal people to hate Judaism with a fiery passion for being such an idiotic jackass, basically made the genius statement that Trump’s victory is a victory against the Conservative and Reform movements’ collective conspiracy to take over the US government. Here’s the quote (it’s real I promise) from the Jerusalem Post:

“Minister Aryeh Deri has welcomed Donald Trump’s election for what he said he believed would be the blow it will strike to Reform and Conservative control of the US government and against progressive Jewish influence in Israel.

Deri made his comments during an address to the local religious council of Ashdod on Thursday.

“There is no doubt that one can give thanks to God that all those who have damned the [Jewish] covenant and all those who would wipe out Judaism who thought they could take control here over the Land of Israel and lead all these reforms in order to destroy received their blow,” said the minister.

“Their influence and the great threat they posed to us as those who hold the US government, they understand that this power has disappeared from them today, and we can continue, God willing, to strengthen traditional religion and Judaism, transmitted down to us from generation to generation.”

What in the world does Donald J. Trump or anyone who voted for him have to do with Conservative and Reform Judaism?

It doesn’t have to be said that Donald Trump has absolutely nothing to do with the Reform and Conservative movements. There is absolutely no relationship at all between those movements and Donald Trump. Donald Trump cares about liberal Jewish movements as much as he cares about the right of gender fluid people to be addressed with gender neutral pronouns.

So what is Deri talking about? How does this make any sense, even to himself?

What he’s doing is essentially what every single other person truly emotionally invested in this past election is doing. He’s just translating Trump’s empty political talk into his own language.

Politicians don’t say anything that means anything. All they do is use meaningless catchphrases that talk about good and evil but are devoid of any actual content on what constitutes those two things. In Deri’s head, the evil people are Conservative and Reform Jews who are trying to destroy Judaism because they hate God, and it is the #1 priority of God Himself to stop them, obviously. They are the cause of all bad in the world, so of course Trump is talking about them when he talks about bad things.

When people hear politicians talking emotionally about good and bad things but lacking any content, they fill in the content with what they believe are good and bad things. It becomes a religion. You take what you hate and you pin everything bad in the world on whatever that thing is, while the empty rhetoric of whatever politician fuels it but you fill in the blanks. Whether it’s gays or Reform Jews or the “Establishment” or Evangelicals or environmentalists or global warming or climate-change-or-whatever-they-call-it-now skeptics or deniers or whatever, it makes no difference.

Just as anti Semites say the Jews control the government, or the Evangelicals say the God-hating abortion-loving atheists control the government, Deri says the Conservative and Reform movements control the government. It’s all the same complete nonsense.

So why is it so particularly bad this election cycle and why do I believe this is the last one for the country before it breaks apart?

Because there is a sense of an ending among many. There’s an innate sense among Americans that something is very wrong. They don’t know what it is but they know it’s getting worse. Most people can sense in their subconscious that America is at a breaking point. So that just makes people hate the people they pin their irrational hate on and love the people they pin their irrational love on. It’s why those who love Hillary so much, hate Trump so much that they’ll blab on about how his “hate for women” will be the end of the country. It’s why so called “minorities” are acting so afraid for their lives even though Trump is not going to kill “minorities”, a term which really has no meaning anymore because anyone can self-identify as whatever race they feel that they are. It’s an absurdity wrapped in two more absurdities.

It’s why those who hate Hillary so much love Trump so much and they will gush about some nonexistent revolution and how “Americans said NO!” and other such poetic nonsense you’ll read on right wing websites about how America is about to “change”. They didn’t say no to or change anything except Hillary Clinton, but they just exchanged her with another Hillary Clinton in Donald Trump. It’s all the same stuffGarbage in garbage out. (Editorial note: I am not as nihilistic as George Carlin is here. I am essentially an optimist and I do believe in redemption. I just think that it has to get a lot worse before it gets better.) 

Nothing changed. All that happened was just an exchange.

But somewhere deep down, people know that this is it. What will happen is that the debt bubble will collapse during Trump’s first term. He’ll be blamed and there may even be a civil war as the massive welfare warfare state finally buckles and Trump can do nothing about it.

Everyone is losing their minds in this election because they feel that the situation is at a breaking point, but they don’t even know what the situation is. So they take the targets they’ve been trained to hate and the targets they’ve been trained to love and they pin extreme emotions on these targets and personify it in a politician who spouts emotional language lacking any content which they then fill with their own beliefs and emotions, none of which have anything to do with the real actual reason why the country is about to fall.

Deri, being a particularly dimwitted moron, comes in and gives his own answer as to what he hates versus what he loves and says the election is really about THAT. But obviously it’s not. And it’s not about what anyone else is saying either.

Deri hates Conservative and Reform Jews, and he loves “god” whatever he thinks that is. That the content that he fills the empty rhetoric with. I suppose his imaginary version of Olam Haba is him surrounded by Conservative and Reform Jewish leaders impaled on stakes or something. His total unrelated conception betrays how everyone’s conception of this election has nothing to do with anything that actually matters. Everyone is simply projecting their own programmed fears and desires onto these two candidates, none of which are relevant to anything at all. It’s all imaginary conceptual barf.

When the debt bubble pops, the lefties will blame it on Trump’s “intolerance of women and gays and blah blah” and the righties will blame it on the fact that we didn’t bomb enough countries and kill enough people and it’s the Muslims’ fault blah blah blah.

But it always just comes down to money. The country is going to fall simply because it borrowed too much money to hand out to people who wanted handouts and more wars, and now its people have to pay the debt back by consuming much much less, meaning people will have much much less stuff and standards of living will plummet. Lots of fighting ahead. Ugly will it get.

The hystericals are right. The country is going down. But none of them know why. It’s like everyone is acting out their own personal nightmares and wet dreams. While you’re in the dream it makes sense, it’s either terrifying or awesome, but when you wake up you realize nothing about it made any sense at all.

This election was nothing but a joint wet-dream-nightmare shared by all americans who are all sleeping while their house is burning down, and they have yet to wake up. They smell the smoke but they’re filtering it all through their own versions of the wet-dream-nightmare they are all currently stuck in.


Another Libertarian Who Just Does Not Understand This Election

A libertarian friend comments. He has a gay son who has become a social justice warrior. Whereas I would not mind if my kid or kids were gay beyond being a little disappointed in less chances of having genetic grandchildren and more difficulty maintaining and passing down Judaism, if any of my kids turn into SJWs it would deeply trouble me. Let’s just leave it at that. I feel my friend’s pain and hope his son gets out of it somehow.

Anyway, here are his comments:

Your post really hit home today. I said almost the same exact words the day after the election. The crying and wailing and cheering is mystifying to me. I can ignore most of it, as I was not invested in this election at all. For the first time in my adult life, I did not cast a vote. The candidates were just too…too, you know…awful. As the election got closer, I waivered and thought that maybe I needed to cast a vote against Hillary, but that is not how voting works. The receiver of the vote does not say “oh, I know you voted for me because I’m not quite as disgusting as my opponent, so I am grateful and honored by your trust in me and I’ll be sure to pay attention to your concerns when I take office.” No, what the winner is really thinking is “they love me! They liked everything I represent! I have a mandate to do exactly what I want to do!” So I didn’t vote. Trump already thinks too highly of himself, and he was going to either win or lose without my one stinking little vote anyway.

Then my son made a very puzzling post on Facebook.

My son is 25 and still in college. He used to have a strong libertarian streak by hanging around with me, but we’ve lived apart for the past 5 years and he’s come under the influence of his boyfriend (yes, he’s gay) and the faculty and other students at the community college and the art school he has been attending. The art school and the SJW’s have really gotten to him. His world view and his language have changed so much that I often find it difficult to follow his train of thought. Discussing or arguing with him is a mind bender, as we often cannot come to agreement on simple facts. For example, women make $.79 for every $1 a man makes. An old fallacy, to be sure, but utterly beyond his ability to question. I think because he can’t believe that every teacher and feminist around him is wrong if they all repeat the same statistic so often. To him, repetition must make it true. The theory of the ‘big lie’ has been tested and found true in my son. Add to that the modern lexicon of the SJW, like ‘feminist’ (it doesn’t mean what it used to), ‘micro-aggressions’, ‘cultural appropriation’, and I think you can sense my bewilderment.

I came home from work on Wednesday to find my wife nearly in tears. Our son had written a ‘beautiful’ piece about the trauma of seeing Trump elected and knowing that he and his ‘community’ will be marginalized and oppressed for the next four years, or longer. But he will pull himself together and continue to fight for the causes of the LGBTQ community, and they will overcome the rampant homophobia that Trump will unleash. Then he wrote a very confusing passage in which he described himself as a ‘white passing’ ‘gender fluid’ gay person who will not let his beautiful life be ruined by the white majority (I’m working from memory here, but I think that is an accurate rendition.) “White passing”? I had to look it up just to make sure I understood him correctly. It appears that he rejects the fact he comes from Northern European stock, with about 1/64th Chippewa added in as a result of the French side of the family producing some ‘half breeds’ a couple of hundred years ago. I’m projecting when I say he must be embracing his Native American roots, because that’s the only non-white thing in him. (When I’m confronted by people playing the race card, I sometimes trump them with my Native American card, even though I find my genetic background nothing more than an historical curiosity. Works every time.) I checked out some websites that purport to help people with racial identity problems, and I see that the current rage is to refer to yourself as the race with which you identify. regardless of genetics. I really don’t know what he calls himself. Holiday conversation should be….(interesting, frustrating, maddening, hillarious….take your pick). By the way, I didn’t find the Facebook post to be ‘beautiful’ in the same way his mother and his gay friends did. I found it to be a word salad dressed with youthful angst.

I tried to bring some reality into my wife’s over-the-top concern for our son’s safety. There is no great anti-gay constituency out there. Straight people I know do not plot attacks on gays. Actually, they really don’t think about gays much at all. It’s just not that important. Live and let live. Today, my wife brought to my attention the story of a gay guy getting beat up by a couple of Trump supporters on election night. I researched it and found it lacking specificity, despite lurid details and a gruesome photo. then a follow up article retracted the ‘Trump supporter’ angle, and then another article noted that the victim could not be contacted for verification. Most likely a hoax…this time. But that is the kind of crap that gets people fantasizing about dangers that don’t exist, and acting out aggressively in response. The anti-Trump riots are very real and could be dangerous. My company canceled a business trip to NYC for Tuesday and Wednesday out of concern for our safety. Good call. This violent reaction is likely to be sparked by irrational fears and fueled by hoaxes.

Like you, I used to have an ‘inner homophobe’ that shuddered a little when I saw gay PDA. I haven’t seen it in my daily life for five years, so I’m not sure I still have it. The thought of gay sex doesn’t do anything for me one way or the other. Maybe I’m numb. Maybe I’ve evolved.

As for reading Atlas Shrugged, that was my early 2016 project. I had read it in my teens, 20’s, and 30’s, so it’s not so much that I wanted to know the story but that I wanted to revisit that book to see if it still held up twenty years after the last reading. Frankly, I expected to be disappointed in the artistry. Rand has been so derided as a clunky hack writer that I accepted she was best off writing non-fiction instead of fiction. Maybe, I thought, I really SHOULD be embarrassed to say I liked it, especially because I have a degree in literature.

On the contrary. It is beautiful. I was moved to tears at certain points, especially during Reardon’s thought-soliloquies. I could FEEL his pain. Her other characters also came alive for me in ways that I had not experienced in the past. I noted the compassion and humanity that she allowed her “cold and rational” characters to feel and demonstrate. It was a cornucopia of nuanced drama, with concern and charity demonstrated throughout. Her detractors have terribly mis-characterized this book, probably because the philosophical themes force the average person to think about their convictions in an uncomfortable way. It is easier and more effective to derisively dismiss than to honestly confront.

On the other hand, I could, and did, quibble with some word choices and some sentence structure. It was clear to me that she was not a native English speaker, as sometimes she used some odd phrases and unusual imagery. A good editor could have smoothed out the clunks, though Rand would have resisted, I’m sure.

As always, Rafi, you get my brain working and I feel compelled to jot down my 2 cents (it’s a half-a-buck now, with inflation). Sorry for the length. If you got this far, thanks for reading.

Top Annoying Things About This Election I Just Do Not Understand

Here are some things going through my mind right now. I’m going to write this in a subdued tone because I’m tired and I can only handle so much. But I may not be able to sustain that tone.

  1. What are people talking about when they say that Trump is homophobic and racist and sexist and anti Semitic? What do they think he’s going to do to gay black Jewish women? Lynch them? What do they actually think he’s going to do? I do not understand.
  2. People who are otherwise basically rational in their private lives for some reason have completely lost their sanity regarding the election. Some people are crying, weeping, bawling, literally acting like two year olds when their Aba tells them they cannot watch the 47 minute long national geographic walrus documentary for the 3rd time in a row. They start screaming and my two year old sometimes actually faints from crying. This is what these people are doing. They’ve completely lost their blanks. Why? What are they actually afraid of, in reality? I do not understand.
  3. Other people are so maniacally happy that I don’t understand what they think is going to happen either. Do they think Trump will bring paradise? That he is the Moshiach? That he will put China in its place or something and get rid of the Mexicans? And they think this will make their lives better, not being able to buy Chinese products anymore? What are they so happy about? I do not understand.
  4. All the people that say that Trump is Hitler, what do they mean? When I say Hillary is Hitler for example and I call her Hitlery, what I mean, literally, is that she has killed more innocent people than Hitler. That can’t really be argued, it’s just a mathematical statement. But what do they mean when they say that Trump is Hitler? Do they mean he has killed more people than Hitler? I don’t think that Trump has killed anybody yet. He will for sure, but as of now his hands are clean. I don’t understand this Trump Hitler thing. He’s definitely got the potential, but what are they specifically talking about? Do they think he will slaughter the Mexicans, literally round them up and murder them? What are they saying? I do not understand.
  5. If riots are happening because some guy is president, what happens when bankruptcy hits and government checks run dry? It’s going to be mayhem. Thousands and perhaps hundreds of thousands could get killed. Why do people not get this, but instead they are worried about Trump being anti gay or whatever they say he is. What do they think he will do to gays? I realize I asked this already, but I still do not understand. Why doesn’t anyone see the bankruptcy coming and instead are focusing on him being “anti woman” but refuse to specify exactly what they think he will do against women.
  6. Does anyone know any heterosexual man who hasn’t said something similar to grabbing women by the vagina in boisterous chatter with friends? I do not know a single man who hasn’t been vulgar behind closed doors in telling jokes and bantering, myself included. Yet I do not grab women by their vaginas. There’s nothing to grab on to. How does one grab a vagina? As one of my gay friends boisterously and vulgarly explained his sexual preferences to me once, he doesn’t enjoy sex with women because “There’s nothing to grab on to.” I laughed uncomfortably because even though this was one of my best childhood friends, I am homophobic. That doesn’t mean I am afraid of gay people. I am not. But I am involuntarily disgusted by thoughts of gay sex acts when they are put in my head through incidental conversation. What straight man isn’t? I do not understand.
  7. How do Hillary supporters not see that she is an evil human being? How do they turn their brains off to her sickness? Even the Podesta emails, which put most of this evil right out in the open, could not convince them. What do they think they are missing now that she is not going to be president? What good specifically do they think she would have done? These people do not even understand what good even is. Perhaps they think she would have passed equal work equal pay laws, which would have unemployed hundreds of thousands of women. I do not understand.
  8. Why do Trump supporters not see the BS in his victory speech? With what money is he going to rebuild the nation’s highways, and how is putting people to work rebuilding highways going to make people richer? Isn’t this EXACTLY what Hitlery said she was going to do? Isn’t it exactly what Obama said he was going to do? Isn’t it exactly what every single president since Eisenhower said he was going to do? I DO NOT UNDERSTAND.
  9. Why do people not understand that we are already in an Idiocracy and both sides are part of it? Are libertarians and economic illiterates evolving into two separate species?
  1. Why does Aryeh Deri have to be such a disgusting pig? All the time? This thing is a leader. Of Jewish people! Who some actually respect! How did this happen? How did we get here?! How does he figure out how to say progressively stupider things, no matter how stupid and piggish the last stupid thing he said actually was, they just keep getting stupider? Not only was it stupid, it was a total non sequitur. What the heck does Trump have to do with Conservative and Reform Jews for God’s sake man! I do not understand!

“Minister Aryeh Deri has welcomed Donald Trump’s election for what he said he believed would be the blow it will strike to Reform and Conservative control of the US government and against progressive Jewish influence in Israel.

Deri made his comments during an address to the local religious council of Ashdod on Thursday.

“There is no doubt that one can give thanks to God that all those who have damned the [Jewish] covenant and all those who would wipe out Judaism who thought they could take control here over the Land of Israel and lead all these reforms in order to destroy received their blow,” said the minister.

“Their influence and the great threat they posed to us as those who hold the US government, they understand that this power has disappeared from them today, and we can continue, God willing, to strengthen traditional religion and Judaism, transmitted down to us from generation to generation.”

Deri, what the blank are you talking about? What the blank is going on in the world? Why is everything so insane?! I’m in the middle of Atlas Shrugged man. It’s come true! They’re all crazy!

Why IDF Deserters Deserve Mad Respect, And Redefining Zionism

Bored IDF Soldier

Excuse typos on this one please. I’m typing really fast before Shabbos and I still have to clean my house. 

A follow up on my niece Eden Farber’s article on serving in the Israel Defense Forces.

She took down her article after being pressured by the bureaucrats to do so. It is still up on the Wayback Machine and will be as long as the server remains online.

A short word on the IDF policy to not allow soldiers to publish negative commentary on Tzahal. At first glance it seems a rational policy. Employees of private companies would be fired for badmouthing the company that employs them. This is the old adage “Don’t bite the hand that feeds you.” The policy itself is not the problem. A company should have the right to fire its employee for any reason at all, even if they don’t like his nose. Everything should go by contract, and if the contract says you can be fired for having an ugly nose, then that should be enforceable. Practically, this clause is actually in most contracts in the form of “any party can terminate said agreement on X notice for any reason etc.”

The problem with the policy is first, IDF service is not a voluntary contract for young people. Eden would have been forced into it anyway in some form. So to prevent soldiers from saying anything they want about the machine that forces them in is unjust, but really the problem is that a private company would fire you and demand its money back. If the IDF stopped there that would be fine. Kick anyone who badmouths the army out of the army and demand back their stipends of what, 300NIS a month? Fine.

But the IDF does not do that. If she didn’t take it down she’d go to prison eventually, be blackballed against future employment etc.

Anyway, that’s not the point of this post. The point is rather the comments that I’ve seen in response to her article as well as in response to my reposting of it on Facebook. Most of them miss the point and display a clear bias towards army service and against market activity, which is not surprising.

Here are some 3 examples:

…Just remember that Israel needs you, both as a soldier and as a citizen, but I think you already understand that as well.

…Nice to read about a spoiled American idealist kid faced reality, grew up, and became a contributing citizen of the most important country in the world. The IDF isn’t there to help you feel good about yourself, that’s YOUR job, no matter what the task. The IDF is there so that every Jew can have the opportunity to do so in that country.

…She deserves respect from the community for volunteering to serve. But, she shouldn’t be so depressed, not everyone can be Moshe Dayan, and even he was not as much as he’s made out to be.

Here’s the problem with these comments. At the base, they build off the assumption that merely wearing a uniform and twiddling your thumbs is a holy endeavor. Because there’s this metaphysical “entity” called Tzahal, sort of like כל ישראל יש להם חלק לעולם הבא, every Israelite has a share in the world to come, and just being part of it is like joining up with some spiritual core. I’ve said this before, but it is a form of worship of something other than God.

Therefore, no matter how useless one is, how abused, or even how destructive (take the case of Gilad Shalit who contributed nothing and lamely went into captivity in one of the most pathetic army stories I’ve ever heard – not blaming Shalit he was forced into it like everyone else) one is to Tzahal, it is still considered holy to wear that uniform.

Now, one of my על חטא’s that I klopped for this year is being too reactionary and caustic. I’m trying to soften my tone a bit here, so I’ll say I understand these sentiments. I grew up with them. They are not foreign to me. They are part of my past, and I get it. Defending the Jewish people (any people really, in the true sense of defensive protection) indeed is a holy endeavor because we are God’s people, and those motivated to join the IDF for this should not be faulted.

But here’s where the bias comes in. If defending the Jewish people is holy, then why aren’t army deserters who would rather work and make money in Israel praised for doing the same exact thing? Take Bar Refaeli for example. She is extremely productive. I like her a lot. (I’m a guy and she’s Bar Refaeli, OK?) The taxes she pays support how many IDF soldiers? And yet she is reviled for being a deserter. Many business leaders and successful Israeli Jews are also army deserters. Good for them. We should respect the heck out of them for being brave enough to say no. That they won’t simply “do their time” to be part of the “big picture”. I’d have less of a problem with respecting army service for the sake of army service if deserters who go into the private sector to make money were also given the respect they deserve.

Zionism connotes service to the State of Israel. The State of Israel is not some metaphysical spiritual yeshus that exists in heaven. It’s just a group of people who pass laws coupled with enforcers. Zionism should not be defined as service to the State of Israel. It should be defined as service to God, or service to one’s conception of some Jewish higher purpose as centered on the Land of Israel if you’re an atheist or don’t believe in religion. I’m religious, so I pick the first one.

I am anti Zionist because I do not serve the State of Israel. But according to my definition of Zionism, I am a Zionist because God has given me a personal religious obligation to live in Israel and to create value in Israel. I am fulfilling that obligation by living in biblical Israel and creating value here for myself and for others.

Are soldiers who twiddle their thumbs in the army fulfilling their religious obligation according to this? I would say no. Market value is very had to measure with a monopoly army, but it’s pretty obvious that a soldier doing nothing is simply consuming resources in Israel.

The Mitzva of יישוב ארץ ישראל, settling the Land of Israel, requires creating more value that one consumes, either measurable economic value in terms of a monetary amount or spiritual value in terms of enriching people’s lives (which in the end could be valued monetarily aggregating the salaries of Rabbis and other spiritual workers in the private sector), both are necessary. If you just have people leeching of the work of others that is not settling. Settling requires work. If everyone leeched, everybody starves and יישוב cannot be done.

Army deserters who are not on welfare fulfill this role more than soldiers who do nothing, or next to nothing.

Now imagine this the other way around. Private companies in Israel, everywhere really, are often reviled for whatever they do, sometimes justifiably but often for simply doing business legitimately. It’s always דן לכף חוב, guilty until proven innocent with the private sector. If someone from a private company like Teva or something were to write an article reviling Teva’s abusive practices against its employees, oh boy would there be hell to pay.

Nobody would come to Teva’s defense commenting on an Eden type article documenting the emotional abuse of Teva that:

…Just remember that Teva needs you as an employee and Israel needs Teva, but I think you already understand that as well.

…Nice to read about a spoiled American idealist kid faced reality, grew up, and became a contributing citizen of the most important country in the world. Teva isn’t there to help you feel good about yourself, that’s YOUR job, no matter what the task. Teva is there so that every Jew can have the opportunity to have cheap medicine.

…She deserves respect from the community for working at Teva. But, she shouldn’t be so depressed, not everyone can be Mark Thatcher (founder of Teva), and even he was not as much as he’s made out to be.

Etc. That would all be ludicrous. In fact, just the opposite. Jews left and right would be manhandling Teva and urging a bunch of people to be fired and big fines to be levied and compensation to be paid to the abused.

But with the IDF, no matter what the heck you’re doing, whether it’s damaging or nothing or barely anything, it’s always good because the IDF is holy.

Well what about Teva? Yes, they do bad things when they partner with the State. Not a perfect example. But how many lives has Teva saved? Wow, a lot. Who cares? Very few. Who considers Teva holy for fulfilling יישוב ארץ ישראל? Virtually nobody.

Statists like to quip, “Israel can’t survive without the IDF,” by which they mean a monopoly State-controlled IDF. Well, maybe, maybe not. It’s an empirical question. Several IDF’s privatized into different competing security companies sounds scary to many, but it is at least conceivable that it would operate much better than what we have now, which is a drain on everyone’s standard of living and death to many who commit suicide in the army.

(In fact, parenthetically, statists also quip that if Private Company X, say Teva again, would cease to exist, the market need would be filled by some other company to meet the need so there is no need for Teva specifically and it is not holy. But when libertarians say that if State Institution Y (say the IDF) would cease to exist, statists claim that everyone would die so therefore the IDF is holy, whereas libertarians say that the market need would be filled by private companies and therefore the IDF is not holy.)

But can the IDF survive without people working in the private sector? No, it cannot. That is not an empirical question. In order to survive in this planet and consume its resources, you first need to produce those resources. That is an a priori logical proposition. The IDF cannot surive  without a private Israeli economy.

So, being that the IDF is absolutely dependent on the private sector, whereas Israel is only dubiously dependent on a public monopoly state controlled IDF, then by transitive property, Israeli companies are much holier than the IDF.

Therefore, army deserters who work in the private sector in the Biblical Land of Israel, deserve equal, if not MORE respect than IDF soldier with no obvious purpose in the army.


How to MacGyver a Dead Car Battery With Used Deodorant

This is straight up the coolest MacGyvering I’ve ever done.

The car battery in my 1997 Kia Pride died 2 weeks ago. I’m getting rid of the car in a few months because the State of Israel government road kappos (responsible for more deaths than all of Israel’s wars and murder victims combined but never ever blamed for them) will require me to take two tests a year instead of one on my car’s 20th birthday, and I don’t want to stomach that.

So I don’t want to get a new car battery for the thing just for a few months. So I went to YouTube. I found this

The production value on this one is quite low, but the basics are all there. The basic idea is to pour out the battery acid, neutralize the rest with baking soda distilled water solution, and then pour in ammonium aluminum sulfate AKA alum (pickling salt solution) in distilled water. Then charge the battery with a battery charger for 24 hours and reinstall it. The car should start and the battery should be good for a few more years.

Problem was, I have no distilled water, I have no alum, and I have no battery charger, and I don’t even have the proper sized wrench to take out the car battery.

But I DO have a water distiller, and I DO have two sticks of mineral salt deodorant and I remembered that one of them showed the main ingredient as ammonium alum. I got the second stick after my other one cracked but I kept the cracked one anyway. I looked up the ingredient of the second stick of deodorant. It was a Thai crystal deodorant, also mineral salts, but this out made out of magnesium aluminum sulfate, basically the same thing just a different metal ion.

I’d rather not use my old deodorant so I look for that deodorant new but it is not sold here. I look in the nature store and they have it but in liquid form only and with a bunch of scented flecch in it that would ruin the battery. So I have to use my old deodorant and buy a new stick. So in the video it prescribes one gallon of distilled water to 8oz alum, but the two sticks together once crushed totaled only 5.5oz or something close to that. So I distilled a little less than one gallon, though my water distiller uses 110V electricity and Israel is 220. So I have two adapters that shouldn’t be used for more than 20 minutes at a time due to overheating, so I alternated them and stuck the other one in the freezer 20 minutes at a time until all the water was distilled.

I got some baking soda, also hard to find in this country because they sell mostly baking powder which has corn starch and would ruin the battery, but I found enough. Really cheap stuff. Neutralized the acid, and then poured in my distilled water and 5.5oz of old crushed dissolved deodorant crystal.

This was after prying the battery out of the car with a screwdriver to the terminals after unsuccessfully trying to find the appropriate wrench at the Katzrin mall.

I can’t charge the battery because I have no battery charger, but I roll start the car (our parking lot is on an incline and the car is a stick shift) and we drive to Kibbutz Ein Gev last night for dinner, thinking that just driving it long enough would enable the alternator to charge the battery by itself.

On the way back, miracle of miracles, the car actually starts.

Total cost:

  1. baking soda about 15NIS
  2. new deodorant 36NIS
  3. water plus electricity to distill the water maybe 2NIS

Total about 53 shekels, if you count me buying new compensatory deodorant as part of the expenses.

Baruch Hatov VeHaMeitiv.