Thursday, March 17, 2016

Jewish Felons: The Problem of Criminality in Observant Communities

The UOJ Archives - August 2006

By Joel Cohen

As a prosecutor and, more recently, a white-collar defense attorney in New York, I have witnessed a disturbing rise in crime among Orthodox and Hasidic Jews. When I broach the subject with Jewish friends, they say that writing about this subject will be “a disgrace to the name of God,” viewing the writing on the issue as the disgrace and ignoring the underlying conduct. They see Jews, particularly observant Jews, as a community that outsiders focus on in search of scandal and feel that exposing the problem will add fuel to the fires of anti-Semitism. I feel that this reasoning is wrongheaded: To ignore crime within our ranks does us a great disservice, both because it weakens us as a community and because tolerating it suggests to the outside world that Judaism does not promote a righteous moral compass.

A Growing Problem

There is no shortage of high-profile Jewish crime. Take the infamous New Square scandal, in which four Hassidim were convicted for defrauding the government of $11 million by setting up a fictitious yeshiva to receive federal student aid money. Or the case in Williamsburg, New York, in which the rabbi of a Jewish day school [Hertz Frankel of Satmar] stole 6 million dollars from the Board of Education over several years by falsely identifying more than eighty individuals as school employees.

The problem in the observant community, however, is not merely occasional, nor does it often make headlines. Daily, in metropolises around the country, yarmulka-wearing criminal defendants appear before the bar of justice. In the early 1970s, a particularly imaginative criminal defense lawyer in New York City successfully sued the U.S. Bureau of Prisons to provide kosher food for one or two of his incarcerated clients. The sad truth is that these days, kosher food has become as commonplace in many penal institutions as it is on airlines.

Today, every day in the minimum-security camp at the Otisville Federal Correctional Institution in Rockland County, New York, there are sizeable minyanim, three times daily. A full-time rabbi attends to the congregation’s spiritual and religious needs. Daily religious classes are offered. Shabbat and holiday meals are provided. There are so many observant inmates—inmates who were ostensibly observant at the time of their arrest, not those who “found God” after they broke the law, thereby increasing the numbers—that such provisions are now available at a number of other federal penal institutions. Anyone practicing in the justice system of a large urban metropolis with a significant Jewish population—New York, Los Angeles, and Miami, for example—has seen a similar trend.

These observant defendants are not typically charged with street crime or narcotics trafficking. The most common charge is fraud: against businessmen and run-of-the-mill citizens alike, most frequently involving victims outside of the Jewish community; against the government; against insurance carriers; against banking institutions; health care fraud; money laundering; and stock swindling.

Perhaps most disturbing is a new breed of fraud involving observant community leaders, sometimes rabbis themselves, and intended to benefit the community itself, such as fraud against government spending programs for education and health care. The perpetrators in these cases don’t typically profit personally, but the government and the intended recipients of these government programs are no less defrauded of funds designated for a particular use. And more often than not, the community, including its lay and religious leaders, stands up for the perpetrators by defending, or at least excusing, their behavior. For example, following the convictions of four Hassidim in the New Square scandal, Hassidic leaders defended President Clinton’s pardon of these individuals on the grounds that the stolen funds were funneled back into their community rather than into their own pockets.

The Key Question

Why is fraud so common in the Orthodox and Hasidic communities? Perhaps Judaism itself concentrates too heavily on technical observances designed to honor the Kingdom of God and not enough on a code of conduct honoring and respecting each other. Maybe the religion, as taught, isn’t sufficiently concerned with ethical precepts particularly with regard to faceless government bodies or individuals outside the fold. Even more disturbing, perhaps criminal, or merely unethical, behavior is simply not inconsistent with religious observance.

Whatever the reason, the ultimate question is simple: Do the religious obligations of Orthodox and Hasidic communities require their members to behave ethically in their everyday behavior, including in their dealings with everyone of every faith? Several responses to this key question will invariably invoke talmudic niceties, such as, “What do you mean by ethical behavior?” Responses of this nature highlight a root problem: talmudic exercises that can be used to rationalize misbehavior. Yet, these rationalizations find little support in the teachings of the Torah itself. Indeed, the Torah contains an explicit injunction against maintaining two weights, one large and one small—the biblical equivalent of two sets of books—declaring it an “abomination to God” to act with such weights corruptly (Deut. 25:13-16). How did we stray so far from such a clear anti-fraud philosophy of the Torah to the present-day efforts by some to defend fraudulent behavior with hyper-technical talmudic logic?

Consider this example: Money laundering did not violate American law until 20 years ago. Nor did it violate any specific biblical law, or post-biblical law, ever. But it now violates American law and is a very serious offense. Some, however, argue that even a serious violation of American law, such as money laundering, that is not also criminalized by the Torah does not require the observant community’s condemnation (e.g., “Our Higher Authority doesn’t itself forbid it”). Without question, a whole category of secular laws criminalizes conduct not proscribed by the Torah. And, in many instances, the proscribed conduct would not violate the morality of the Jewish religion or, for that matter, the state. Indeed, many are so-called victimless crimes.

It may even be that particular criminal statutes are discriminatory in their enforcement or affirmatively harm certain segments of society. This is not true, it is worth noting, of money laundering, insider trading, or criminal tax laws, which may be onerous in the extreme and sometimes unfair in their application, but not discriminatory, e.g., they were not enacted to “get” Jews.

There are certainly times when we are justified in disobeying the law. To invoke the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, there may be times when “if there is nothing worth dying for, there is nothing worth living for.” Some laws imposed by a secular government are so inappropriate—indeed, perhaps, although rarely, anti-Semitic—that the good citizen’s duty is to take the consequences and civilly disobey them in protest. Such laws are rare in post-World War II America. But engaging in civil disobedience to protest the repugnant law is not the same as simply breaking the law for monetary gain. If a law-abiding Jew disobeys a law to protest its unfairness, fully recognizing the consequences of his protest, one can argue that he remains an observant Jew.

Still, civil disobedience aside, if a statute exists on the books, there is a halachic consequence to violating it, however victimless or onerous it may be. This is true, however, even if the law is seen as designed to protect the financially entrenched against the outsider, and thus is itself immoral. Some observant communities have argued, for example, that the education finance regimes do not fairly address the financial needs of Jewish parochial schools, thus requiring extralegal machinations to level the playing field. “Extralegal,” here, though, really means illegal.

Jewish law, handed down through the generations through Maimonides, pronounces that “the law of the land is the law.” In other words, an act criminalized by a secular government is also prohibited by the Torah simply by virtue of existing under the secular law of the society in which we live. If we truly believe in that fundamental concept—for observant Jewry it should be as binding as a law appearing verbatim in written Scripture—it hardly matters that the particular law is not ethically based, does not violate a specific precept of the Torah, or may even be of questionable social value. If the Jewish or observant Jewish community believes that the law was enacted largely because that community does not have an adequate voice in government, it should get out the vote—not defy the law.

Finally, some may suggest that certain Jewish groups who emigrated from Eastern Europe were victimized there by anti-Semitic regimes, which makes their disrespect for secular rule of law understandable. This argument raises a bizarre affirmative action defense that seeks immunity from the laws of the United States for wrongs that the United States had nothing to do with. Regardless, the previously victimized community should take no solace in such an explanation, as there is simply no comparison between Poland in 1939 and America in 2004.

The Community’s Response

It is astonishing, sometimes, how the observant and Hasidic communities react to criminal charges by a superficially observant defendant. Often, those communities assume that anti-Semitism is the driving force behind an unfounded prosecution or that the defendant is being prosecuted (or persecuted) more severely because he is Jewish. Even after a guilty verdict or plea (which should remove any lingering doubt about guilt, as well as any claim of a frame-up), his community will frequently write supportive letters to a sentencing judge suggesting that this is simply aberrant behavior for “an otherwise observant Jew.” And that may be true—sometimes. For some, psychological or compelling financial reasons may induce one-time criminal episodes, contrary to how the individuals conduct otherwise exemplary lives.

But what about the habitual offender who leads an otherwise pious life? He is a regular attendant at minyan; he is meticulous in his kashrut observance; he joyfully sanctifies the Sabbath; he gives charity generously. He also, because it is simply the right thing to do, treats his employees well and is a dedicated and respected leader of the community. Nevertheless, he engages in fraudulent business practices, over and over—but he only cheats the government, non-observers, or non-Jews. Should the religious community that he comes from still stand behind this individual as an observant Jew or “an otherwise observant Jew”?

To be sure, this man deserves the emotional support of his family, friends, and even his community when he is in trouble with the law. We are a people proud of the traditions of forgiveness and repentance. Clearly, the members of his religious community, if they have something favorable to say to a judge about him, should come forward and not abandon him when he has fallen on hard times for his waywardness—especially if he demonstrates true acceptance of responsibility and contrition.

But his community also deserves something in these cases. It deserves the outspoken and unequivocal condemnation of the conduct as being contrary to religious observance. And for this condemnation to have any real impact on that community, it must come from lay and religious leaders within the community itself, who must acknowledge that religious observance is flatly incompatible with fraudulent behavior. Only with the open denouncement of wrongdoing from within the particular observant community can the community hope to demonstrate and protect the Torah’s commitment to honesty in one’s interpersonal dealings as being at least equal to, if not greater than, its commitment to technical observance of mitzvot. Indeed, frequently, the community and its rabbis stand behind the seemingly flexible rule that Jews may not testify against other Jews in a secular court, notwithstanding the seriousness of the offense—hardly a position calculated to encourage the denouncement of wrongdoing or scandal.

Thus, advocating leniency for an observant felon precisely because of his so-called piety as an “observant Jew” harms both the religion and the observant community by suggesting that religion allows for a divergence between piety and morality. Indeed, if this same yarmulka-wearing man were a completely honest businessman whose aberrant conduct was, instead, a weakness for shrimp, would the observant community refer to this man as an observant Jew or an otherwise observant Jew? Surely not! Is kashrut a more fundamental observance in Judaism than basic honesty?

Presiding over a case involving a Hasidic Jew who had pleaded guilty to burning down unoccupied buildings for insurance, Federal Judge I. Leo Glasser turned to the large number of Hasidim who had come to court in support of their fellow Hasid and said:

Some persons might characterize [your presence here] as being a chilul hashem [a disgrace to the name of God].… Sometimes one wonders whether … more emphasis is placed on form and not enough on substance….[T]he words that you recite three times a day and the code and the laws that you study should be thought of in terms of what those words mean and what they are intended to move us to do in terms of the kind of life we lead.

For a secular judge to have used the term chilul hashem in an American court suggests that he is speaking to the defendant as both judge and fellow Jew. His are words that we should all heed.

No matter how we try to justify it—whether as victimless crime, the result of past persecution, something that only affects “outsiders” while helping the Jewish community, a just response to unjust policy, or irrelevant missteps by the otherwise pious—criminal behavior simply cannot be condoned in observant Jewish communities. It undermines the foundations of what we believe, as well as damaging us in the eyes of the outside world. The disgrace of Jewish fraud is not only a disgrace against God, but also a disgrace to ourselves and each other. The Torah and Jewish teaching will give us guidance on how to live ethically, even in our complicated modern society, if we only listen to its truths. At day’s end, the burden lies with all of us. In the words of Edmund Burke, “the only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men [and women] to do nothing.”

Joel Cohen, a former prosecutor, practices white-collar criminal defense law at Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP in New York. He is the author of Moses: A Memoir.


Anonymous said...

Ashamed To Be A Jew??

Generally, I try to take pride in being a Jew. I know I'm conspicuously Jewish. I wear my skirt among jeans, I wear long sleeves in 95 degree weather, I button my polo shirt to the top, and all that stuff. I know I look different, and I'm proud. Sometimes.

Earlier this summer, however, I was ashamed to be a Jew.

I entered the Wal-Mart in Monticello. "Just don't notice I'm jewish," I muttered under my breath, and furrowed my brow in concern. I looked around nervously. I bit my finger. I noticed some locals who probably viewed at me as an intruder. "I'm nothing like them!!" I wanted to shout. "No, you don't get it! I don't return used air conditioners. I don't mess up your aisles. I'm unobtrusive, really..." I can continue babbling, and I probably would. And I'd probably make a worse Chillul Hashem describing them and all they do than they do themselves just by being there. . .

ZA said...

There are two separate issues that unfortunately became combined together.
On one hand all frauds are crime and there is nothing like victimeless crime. I do not have any sympathy to those who steal from anybody including the governemnt and as far as I am concerned, I wouldn't shed any tear if the criminals from New Square would continue to sit in prison forever. I personally know the infamous developer from New Jersey, and while I am sorry for him, I have no problem with him sitting in jail (he manged to shorten his stay there - but he did serve time.)
On the other hand, the system of quadruple taxing the religious communities by forcing them to pay full tax and then pay full tuition anyway (which actually amounts to more then quadruple taxing in the Haredi communities with many children per family) - is probably unique to the United States in its unfairness and the financial squeeze it put on individuals and the community alike. Therefore, some communities come to see the frauds that are designed to recup some of the taxes back as mere disobedience.
Any other reasons for fraud put aside (as what it is - simple fraud) - this particular one should be addressed differently. The problem must be resolved in its root - meaning, something has to change in the system itself. Just telling us to vote is not good enough - we do, because the problem itself does not disappear.
I wish Mr, Cohen would recognize this specific problem and, besides of dealling with the crime in our community - which is positive, he should also try to deal with the unfair taxing issue. And please don't give me the stupid "but you could send your kids to the public school" knowing very well that we can't.

Anonymous said...

"{Take the infamous New Square scandal, in which four Hassidim were convicted for defrauding the government of $11 million by setting up a fictitious yeshiva to receive federal student aid}" why should they care about money laundering when they could'nt care less that the gabbi of the rebbi is an alleged child molester

Anonymous said...

TO UOJ THE GREAT ONE! is not the issue at hand child molestation? although i know you brought this article to our attention to show us the rabbonim that once again just keep quiet for fear of chillul hashem or some other personal issues JUST AS IN THE MOLESTATION CASES. UOJ KEEP IT UP WE HAVE TO OUT THESE FALSE RABBONIM ONCE AND FORALL LEIZEROWITZ VICTIM FOREVER

Anonymous said...

There is a correlation between the problem of growing economic criminal behavior in the Orthodox community and the scandal of sexual abuse. It is the same hiding behind a halakhic formalism that justifies laundering money since the Shulchan Aruch does not mention it as prohibited, that fails to comprehend why it is horrendous for adults to abuse children. In modern societies dishonesty and moral depravity are often expressed in different terms from those mentioned in traditional sources but the ethical and moral principles of halakha remain valid. Unfortunately we lack the rabbinic leadership prepared to make the necessary applications.
Rabbi Yisrael salanter started a Mussar movement primarily concerned with character development and ethical sensitivity but when was the last time one heard a Mussar shmuze that mentioned either.
As a child I was brought up with the model of my grandfather trying to pay back his creditors during the depression because an ehrlicher yid should not rely on the technical use of bankruptcy to avoid his responsibilities.
Yosef Blau

Anonymous said...

As far as I'm concerned, this article is divisive & inflammatory.

Shame on UOJ for reprinting it!

Anonymous said...

Money laundering is often an issur d'Oraysa anyway. When enabling drug dealers for instance, any neshomo that gets screwed up for taking those drugs or killed in drug related violence is the launderer's reponsibility. But don't ask some of our members.

Anonymous said...

Even if they don't break the law, what about unethical behavior & genaiva from others in the kehillah on the part of people who cheat yeshiva tuition committees? Because of these fressers who are able to pay but do not, the rest of us are saddled with their chelek. Bums.

Y.Y. said...

i would never take you as a defence attorney you sound like the government attorney
i wish you die
you put jewish people in jail

Anonymous said...

In Yated Neeman this past week there was a newsbit that Rav Elyashiv forbade going to amusement
centres that r open on Shabbos.
Shouldn't the same issur apply to
money laundering where the proceeds enable drug dealers to poison Jewish youth???

Oh, but then I forgot that the Litvish Shulcahan Aruch doesn't apply to Chassidim. I once spoke
to a Chassid and it was clear that
his definition of Chillul Hashem
was strictly an act in which a Jew
violates a Halacha. Hashem Yerachem!!

Anonymous said...

How many tzitzis does Rabbi Scheinberg wear? He's got nothing on this guy! http://knuttz.net/hosted_pages/121-T-Shirts-20060827

Anonymous said...

To above Anon @ 9:28,

What's the gabbai's name? When and in what capacity did the molestation occur?

Paul Mendlowitz said...

Blogger Posek Belsky,

Let's go after Joel Cohen for being mevaze gedolim/Yiddishkeit.


Anonymous said...


Joel Cohen counsels and defends individuals and corporations under investigation or prosecution for federal crimes such as racketeering, securities fraud, income and excise tax evasion, bribery, corruption of government officials, defense procurement fraud, insurance fraud, environmental offenses and international customs violations. Additionally, Mr. Cohen represents attorneys who have been charged with disciplinary offenses.

Mr. Cohen has ten years of combined prosecutorial experience in the New York State Special Prosecutor’s Office and in the U.S. Justice Department’s Organized Crime and Racketeering Section, where he served as Assistant Attorney-in-Charge. In both of these positions, Mr. Cohen investigated, prosecuted and tried cases against high-ranking state officials accused of corruption activities.

Selected Activities
• Frequent Contributor (“Outside Counsel” Columnist), New York Law Journal, on various subjects in the white-collar criminal field, including ethics issues; Author, Moses: A Memoir, June 2003 (Paulist Press); Adjunct Professor, Professional Responsibility, Brooklyn Law School and Fordham Law School

• Member, Federal Bar Council
• Member, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers

Admitted to Practice
• New York, 1968

• J.D., New York University, 1967
• LL.M., New York University, 1969; Tax
• A.B., Brooklyn College, 1965

Selected Publications
• "Working With a Private Eye" by Joel Cohen, New York Law Journal , August 7, 2006
• "Self-Help: When Client Uses Claim of Right Recovery" by Joel Cohen, New York Law Journal, June 28, 2006
• "Polishing a Cooperator's Truthfulness" by Joel Cohen, New York Law Journal, February 23, 2006
• "It's 'Off the Record'" by Joel Cohen, New York Law Journal , January 11, 2006
• "When Trial Judges Second-Guess Lawyers" by Joel Cohen, New York Law Journal , October 20, 2005
• "The Duty of Zealousness" by Joel Cohen , New York Law Journal , June 20, 2005
• "Representing The Innocent Client" by Joel Cohen, New York Law Journal , June 9, 2005
• "Ethic Rules and Legal Fees" by Joel Cohen , New York Law Journal, March 7, 2005
• "The Wisdom of Jailing Reporters" by Joel Cohen, New York Law Journal, November 3, 2004
• "Memorializing Client Conversations," by Joel Cohen, New York Law Journal, October 4, 2004
• "Clamming Up - for Safety," by Joel Cohen, National Law Journal, September 13, 2004
• "Buying Victim Silence," by Joel Cohen and James L. Bernard, New York Law Journal, July 28, 2004
• "Celebrity Jurors," by Joel Cohen , New York Law Journal, April 7, 2004
• "Confidentiality Agreements and Crime" by Joel Cohen and Joseph E. Strauss, New York Law Journal, December 23, 2002
• "Issues in Representing Criminal Informers," by Joel Cohen, New York Law Journal, April 7, 2000
• "Litigating the Consequences of Betrayal," by Joel Cohen, New York Law Journal, December 14, 1998

Anonymous said...

Yesterday, I met with Rabbi Shlomo Tzvi Alter - one of the Gerrer Rebbe's sons who, along with his brothers, heard the Rebbe say emphatically before Kiddush, "Moshiach will come this year, or by the end of next year."

Anonymous said...

Headline: UN-ORTHODOX JEW: The Enemy Within-Part Three-Chassidism Is Not Judaism
Category: Orthodox Judaism
Posted at: 01:50 PM - 08 Aug 2005
UN-ORTHODOX JEW: The Enemy Within-Part Three-Chassidism Is Not Judaism
Saturday, August 06, 2005
The Enemy Within-Part Three-Chassidism Is Not Judaism

Make no mistake, Chassidism is not part of authentic Judaism.

In matter of fact it is closer to Christianity than to Judaism.

Orthodox Jews believe that ALL of the principles of Judaism were given to Moshe at Sinai.
The written Torah and the oral Torah were dictated to Moshe by Hashem for the forty days he was at Sinai.

The roots of the Chassidic movement did not begin until the thirteenth century, when Moses De-Leon started the writings of the Zohar.
About three hundred years later, Isaac Luria(ARI) started preaching this mystic garble.
The Ari as he was known, was an enigma.
He purported to preach the thoughts of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai, who lived fifteen hundred years earlier.
The problem is that there was no known link of mesorah or chain of events, going back to that time, from RSBY to him or to De-Leon.

Orthodox Jews believe that the Torah m'Sinai was transmitted from father to son, generation after generation, traceable back to Moshe.
The fact that there was no link from the Ari or De-Leon to RSBY, and therefore no link back to Sinai, would eliminate the Zohar or Kabballah from effectively being part of Judaism.

The most we can rationally say about the Zohar, that it was a" theory" of a few people, and no more.

Chassidim, have their entire canon(or myths) based entirely on the writings of the Zohar, and the rantings of an unlearned bal agalah or horse and buggy driver, known as the Baal Shem Tov or the Besht.
The Besht, being the very first Forest Ranger, hanging out with the animals in the forest and talking to the trees, set a precedent for todays rebbes who hang out in their ghettos with their animals.

Tales of the Besht are just that, buba maases, or in english fairy tales .(In Brooklyn we call it unadulterated BS).

The Vilna Gaon called the Besht a heretic and a lunatic, and considered that movement outside of Judaism.

Rabbi Aron Kotler refused to let chassidim into Lakewood. When he ultimately relented under great pressure, he forbade them to wear their shtreimels in the bais medrash.

It is difficult enough for any Jew to really comprehend Torah m'Sinai, but that is emunah; who in their right mind can possibly believe the stupidity of the chassidic nonsense which emanates from an ignoramus?

Imagine if you will, Art Scroll gedolim stories, turning into another branch of Judaism in a few hundred years.

The entire concept of the kabbalistic ten sfiros, the sum total of the sfiros representing Hashem;how far away is that from Christianity, where the Trinity is the sum total of their Divinity?

How far away is the tzaddik or rebbe, who through his holiness, is capable of representing the chassid to Hashem; to "Yushka", who through him only can you reach the Kingdom Of God?

The" coming ressurection" of the Lubavitcher Rebbe demonstrates how far afield of Judaism ALL the chassidic groups have gone.

The Gerrer Rebbe is now assurring his flock, that Moshiach will arrive in the next year or so.
He is a sick, delusional idiot who deserves a good flogging.
Hey, putz, if Moshiach is coming in the next year or so, he surely did not tell an ignoramus like you.
You behaima, stop taking whatever drugs you are on.
When he doesn't come, then what?
You make me sick, feh!

The entire concept of a Jew needing an intemediary to get heard by Hashem was and is a fraud.One should have to dump their entire head down the toilet in shame, if they believe in this apikorsus.

This dveykus garbage, where one should cleave to their rebbe, is the BIGGGEST mentally dysfunctional illness of Chassidism.
Who the hell is this rebbe that he should be cleaved to?
I will tell you who, gangsters.
The Mafia godfathers, also had their underlings cleave to them.
The same type of fear, one physical, one emotional.

How in the world does anyone buy into this?

How ill does one have to be to cleave to a putz without a job?

His ONLY job is screwing you out of your money and independence.
What in the world do you need this parasite for?
Have these scam artists so emotionally paralyzed you, that if you let go of them , you fear divine retribution?

We have watched in horror the goings on among the chassidim.
They have bastardized our faith with their hocus pocus.
Their rebbes are the greatest con artists of the group, bleeding their sheep for whatever, and having them go to jail for their thefts.

Buddhists, Hindus and Scientologists have more credibilty than these groups of peasants.

The original post war rebbes of Satmar and Klausenberg were well intentioned and learned people.
They gave their lives to the klal, and had an honest agenda.One can differ with their world view which I do with vehemence, especially Satmar, but one has to respect their drive to reestablish and rebuild the lives of the remnants of their respective communities.

The Lubavitcher Rebbe, Menachem Mendel, was a brilliant and charismatic figure, who had his own agenda of note.
Unfortunately his movement went awry with sheer insanity, especially the Moshiach movement, which catapaulted his religion into something other than Judaism.
He could have stopped it, either he went crazy in his old age, or worse, he believed it.
Nevertheless, he left an unmatched legacy of chessed and kiruv, that has way surpassed any other chassidic groups.

These three rebbes were legitimate heirs of their respective chassidus, they were talmidei chachomim and sincere people.
They believed in their own brands of Judaism, although it was based on voodoo theories.
The only reason I can somehow tolerate them, is because as human beings they had integrity.
The money they raised, was for their version of what was good for Yiddishkeit.
They were self-sacrificing, and I believe well intentioned, although absolutely wrong in their distinct approaches.
They filled a need at the time, which was to restore sanity to their followers after the war.
They should have discontinued this demented ideology, and embrace Torah true Judaism.
But something weird happens to people when scores of people put them on a pedestal.
Their sense of self gets distorted, and if they become the ultimate authority without anyone to answer to, megalomania sets in.
Absolute power corrupts, absolutely.

The chassidus of today is organized crime, no more.
They,the Mafia, also had big hats, and stole whatever they could.
Every single chassidus today, is corrupt from head to toe.
Their rebbes lead and mislead their idiot followers to a life of frivolity.
Meaningless gatherings, to waiting up all night to get a bracha from the top honcho, is just another con game.
There is no meaning in dancing and swaying with the rebbe.
There is no sense in partaking from his leftover food.
There is no benefit in getting a feel good bracha from these guys.
It is ONE BIG HOAX, and the joke is on you, you demented behaimas.

The present Satmar is composed of a bunch of hoodlums with their rebbe at the helm, and is a shameful example of what went wrong with all these chassidic movements.

Satmar gave birth to the Neturai Karta, the behaimas that met with Arafat, may he drop dead again.
The first Rebbe, unfortunately, was off the wall with his hate of what he called the Medinas Yisroel.
He was the prime mover and shaker, pitting Jew against Jew.I am sure, that his soul is paying the price for this form of terrorism.
For whatever his thoughts on the secular Jews, his hate mongering was the sign of a man who was irrational and worse.
He approved and condoned the open displays of hate from his followers.

The present rebbe, a former stockbroker and a shady one to boot, inherited the job because R' Yoel had no sons.
On the merits of his right to this job, other than being a Teitelbaum, he had none.

There was another Joel Teitelbaum, who was a cousin of the rebbe.
He came over after the war, and called himself the Satmar Rebbe.
He raised money, until his cousin and other people from Satmar came, and put an end to his fraud.
He changed his name to the Kirhauser Rebbe.
He was uncovered to be a KAPO, or a Nazi collaborator, during the war.
In other words, he beat the hell out of fellow Jews and worse.

When one of his kids were doing a shidduch, and the prospective machatunim met, the machatainester fainted on the spot because she recognized him as the kapo that beat her almost to death.No, this shidduch did not take place.

He established a shul, and became a "mover and shaker" in the nursing home business.

He" moved" dead bodies from freezer to freezer, collecting their social security checks in the meanwhile.
The ones that were still alive, he" shaked" whatever money they had out of them, by stealing their mail and bank accounts.

He defrauded the government and every single investor that trusted him.
After all, he was a rebbe!
He should rot in hell!

The Spinka Rebbe was whisked away one Shabbos during davening by the police, he screamed Shabbos, Shabbos!!The people he abused in his nursing homes had nobody to scream to when he abused them, stole their social security checks, and gave them rotten food.
When the old people died, this great tzaddik, may he rot in hell, froze their bodies, to be able to keep collecting the government stipends.
He was part of the notorious Bergman family, or the "Nursing Home Mafia" as described by the New York Times.
Bernard Bergman, Israel Braunstein and Moses Braunstein went to jail.
There is another Braunstein in the news, government auditors are looking into millions of dollars of medicaid money that can not be accounted for from his nursing home.
It's in their blood, they are sick!

Damn these animals; the mitzvah of burying the dead within twenty four hours of death, goes in the garbage when there is money to be stolen. The mitzvah of "escorting the dead" to him meant, escort, "after" all the money was sucked out of the family and the social security number.

His two behaimeshe gangster mamzeirim run Spinka today. Monkeys in black garb.

Hertz Frankel, aka the" Satmar Gonniff" stole tens of millions of dollars throughout his thirty years at Satmar.
The government finally caught up with him, he plea bargained, and stayed out of jail.
Do not tell me that the Rebbe did not know where all these millions came from.

Leib Pinter, the notorious Bnai Torah fraudster, stole millions of dollars for non existent government lunch programs.
Munkascz, Vishnitz, Ger, Belz, Satmar,Skver, Bobov, and all the other midgets with fur hats and long filthy black bathrobes, had a direct hand in this and all other government frauds through Pinter and his cohorts.
Pinter went to jail.
Pinter has been indicted again for mortgage fraud.

He is the "energizer" goniff, he keeps stealing & stealing & stealing.....

When they got caught, these nice guys, rebbes, threw the front men to the dogs.

There was drug money laundering, and drug selling through Bobov.
Maher Reiss went to jail.

The Munkaczer's brother, the Dinover Rebbe, brother in-law of the Vyepoler Rebbe(Frankel's shul in Flatbush), was caught drug smuggling.

But they have pretty shuls and fancy homes.

Every single time records had to be produced, all of a sudden the files somehow got destroyed by fire.

WOW! Hashem certainly created this "nes "so these thieves can keep their businesses going.
"Viheney boar b'aish v'hasneh ukol!", these guys certainly deserved Divine intervention, as Moshe did!This time somehow, Hashem decided that the fire SHOULD destroy the phony records.
Skver,Bobov,Munkascz,Satmar,Gur....all had fire sales.



Shlomo Halberstam, the first misfit of Bobov, landed in New York after the war.He had his butt fired at the first shul that hired him, because he could not learn a blatt G'mora.

This holy genius moved to Crown Heights and ran a kindergarten.
His job was to give the kids candies.I swear this is true, I spoke to one of those" kids."

A few lunatic admirers of this Don Juan, decided to move him to Boro Park.So what that he had no clue about learning.
He made them feel good, what else matters?

He was a master at his game.So what that his father advised his kehilla in Poland not to worry about the Nazis, and assurred them that no harm would come to them.
He was a" holy" man, surely his bracha had G-D's seal of approval.
Well, you know the end of that story.

The "holy" men from Gur and Belz gave the same advice to their followers.
They would do and say anything to hold on to their little kingdoms.
Can you not see that these guys are meaningless people, who without the soap box you put them on would be wagon drivers?

The fight going on at Bobov now for the "malchus," is about money and power, it has NOTHING TO DO WITH G-D.
One guy is a bigger retard than the other.
Take away the real estate and money, they both would be driving cabs.

Years ago, Stoliner chassidim crowned a nine year old kid as their rebbe.
You tell me that these guys are normal.

The Chabad telethon sums up the present day status of that group.

The Rebbe's picture is their avoda zara.You have Christians, Asians, shvartzes, and drug addicts doing the hora around the Rebbe.

Cunin and his family have managed to accumulate one hundred fifty million dollars in real estate, and have ruined people's lives by having the secular courts confiscate any property that housed a "Chabad shul", even though they, the Cunin's, had nothing to do with it. In other words, they became the franchisers for the Chabad name.
The Kentucky Fried Chicken of chassidus, with Cunin as Colonel Sanders.

When a bais din ruled AGAINST Cunin,this shyster, who has free access to first rate attorneys, took it to secular court, AGAINST THE RULING OF THE "CHABAD" BAIS DIN.

This" holy" guy, has a direct line to the Rebbe, and I am sure that is what the Rebbe advised him to do.
Cunin hangs out every month at the kever, midst a whole community of Lubavitchers who are waiting for him to dust himself off and reveal himself.Cunin has got to know something we don't.

A historical note of interest.
None of the direct descendants of the first Lubavitcher Rebbe, R' Shneur Zalman, are frum.In matter of fact one of his sons converted to Catholicism.

The sad part about all of this, because the world today is in such upheavel, people look to other people to make them feel good.
The chances of this mental illness called chassidus to go away any time soon, is not promising.
People are spending billions of dollars on anti-depressants and other types of feel good drugs.
The guys in the black coats are their Opium.

If you will continue to rely on people for all that is wrong in your life, why not put true ehrliche Yiden at the helm.
Why settle for ignoramuses and thieves?
Do away with these purveyors of idiotic dogma and rituals.

Do not wait for the Moshiach, you be your own liberator.
There are no "seventy two virgins"waiting for you, or whatever your version of that BS is.


Anonymous said...

of Joel Cohen's article is the far-left wing Tikkun Magazine


Exclusive: Chairman of Jewish Prisoner Services International, Chaplain Gary Friedman, disputes Tikkun article by Joel Cohen on Orthodox Jewish felons

Joel Cohen's article is highly slanted Orthodox bashing. Furthermore, it is inaccurate and exaggerates an anomaly that is almost exclusively confined to a small segment of the New York Jewish population (which, admittedly, is the highest per capita in the U.S.).
As Chairman of the international pluralist Jewish prison and jail chaplaincy organization (and a prison chaplain myself), I can tell you that if there is such a thing as a 'typical' Jewish inmate, he or she was not afforded the opportunity of a proper Jewish education (which was not his/her fault) and was relatively non-observant prior to being incarcerated. So, why isn't the self-deprecating [I assume, Jew] Mr. Cohen writing about that?
For many Jewish inmates, prison is their first real contact with yiddishkite as prisoners tend to seek an affinity group to help them survive the experience and Jews tend to find other Jews - even if they come from a secularized family and don't know what is to be Jewish.
Statistically, it is difficult to get a handle on exactly how many Jews are imprisoned in the U.S. because they are not required to declare a religious preference. As is the case in the community, there are those who choose to get involved with Jewish activities and those who don't. There's also the matter of some Jewish prisoners - particularly in higher security facilities - not wanting to be identified as Jewish due to valid fears of being discriminated against or otherwise endangered by anti-Semitic staff and inmates. And, there is a current phenomena of many non-Jewish inmates claiming to be Jewish (for a variety of agendas from trying to scam the 'rich' Jewish community through attempting to gain a kosher diet). On the bright side, our best estimate is that actual Jews (by all branch standards) comprise less than .1% - yes, 1/10th of 1% - of the almost 2.3 million men and women currently incarcerated in the U.S. - which, by the way, is the highest prison/jail population and highest incarceration rate in the world. And, I should note that this figure includes many Israelis who've gotten into trouble over here (and around the globe, mainly for drug-related offenses), most of them being typically non-observant Sabras.
Re types of offenses, we have done such a great job of assimilating that Jews are committing the exact same offenses in the exact same proportions as everybody else. As to the Jewish community's preferred belief that Jews don't commit violent offenses, the fact is that Jews have always been involved in violent crime [e.g. the Jewish 'Combination' that preceded and taught the Mafia - and then kept their books for them]. The Jewish notion that somehow 'white collar' [i.e. financial] offenses carry less culpability than other forms of crime is likewise untrue as far more people are seriously harmed by white collar crime [e.g. cases of the life savings of thousands of elderly victims being stolen] than by anything else. Jews are also just as susceptible to drug addiction, familial abusiveness, sexual misconduct, etc., etc. as non-Jews.
As for kosher diets, what does it matter if they have Lubavitch schitah or Chassidisher certification or OU or CRC or anything else? So what if they have a minyan at Otisville [which is the only prison of its kind in the country]? Religious rights are not left at the prison gate and Jewish prisoners are as entitled to their religious practices and standards as are those of other faiths (even though the legions of Evangelical missionaries who haunt prisons would like it to be otherwise). Besides, it is our nature as Jews to come to G-d for the wrong reasons - but that's what gets us there and, G-d-willing, we end up doing the right things for the right reasons. Moreover, it is our theology that every Jew is entitled to the opportunity for redemption.
The truth is that the Orthodox/Chassidic communities account for a very small percentage of Jewish offenders. For almost all of them who are incarcerated, it is a constant battle to be permitted even the smallest of Jewish practices and property, and without the advocacy of Jewish chaplaincies, many of them would be totally obstructed. But then, there are obviously those Jews who feel that this is what t'shevuah should be about. After all, our organization is the least popular in the Jewish world and when it comes to providing support to us or any other cause, it's the other causes that get it.
One more note: Our chaplaincy neither condones our condemns our errant brethren, but we do walk the walk in fulfilling the Jewish mandate of being responsible to all other Jews.
Chaplain Gary Friedman, Chairman
Jewish Prisoner Services International

Paul Mendlowitz said...


Exactly what part of Joel Cohen's article is untrue?
The fact that it appeared in Tikun does not make it inaccurate.

Anonymous said...

Joel Cohen-you're a disgrace to the entire Cohen family.

Anonymous said...


According to this page he learned in Brooklyn yeshivos and moderates a forum at 5th Ave Synagogue.


He also gives speeches at another modern orthodox shul on West 72nd St. It must be a fringe leftist shul as other speakers include a woman professor of Talmud at the Conservative JTS and sex guru Dr Ruth Westheimer.

Anonymous said...


Joel Cohen also has time to squeeze in teaching at Brooklyn Law School.

Anonymous said...

Without scrutinizing Cohen's article under a microscope, I don't see anything wrong with it. I was just a little suspicious as to the motive when a radical rag like Michael Lerner's Tikkun is involved. I guess no mainstream publication wants to rock the boat.

Anonymous said...

Exposing what needs to be exposed.

Ronnie Schreiber said...

I posted this on the previous thread, but I think it's appropriate.

The truth is that such ideal types, people who know no backsliding, have never existed except as figments of the imagination and literary invention. No Jew, not even the greatest leader, saint, or prophet, has ever been free of religious problems, failing, heartaches, and doubts. This is as established principle: everyone who takes the religious life seriously and who is thus ever striving onward experiences setbacks along the way. It is not merely that "there is no one so righteous that he does only good and never sins," but more than this: temptations, doubt, pain, and transgression are the inevitable lot of those who would ascend higher. To be sure, all seekers are not on the same level, and their failings are thus not equally grave. A great person who falls back may still be on a much higher plane than others. In both the material and the spiritual realms, "the righteous man may fall down seven times and yet arise." Though he falls again and again, he continues to grope his way upward. Indeed, this is the strength of the righteous: their ability to endure crisis, to bounce back, and to turn failure into a source of strength. "the [thoroughly] wicked man," on the other hand, "falls once and for all"; once down, he cannot get up. His way is blocked, and there is no way for him to renew his ascent.

Rav Adin Steinsaltz - Teshuvah pp 35-36

The sad truth is that people sin. All of us. Very few business people are as yashar yashar as they could be. I was talking to one of my oldest friends yesterday. He recently sold his family's business, a wholesale plumbing supply, to a large company. The plumbing supply has such a good reputation in this area that the new owners are rebranding their own stores with the combined name. I've never known this person to tell an untruth and his father is one of the few people capable of successfully giving me mussar. That being said, while I was discussing with him the attempts to out UOJ and the aspersions cast upon his alleged alter ego, I said that there are almost no businesses that are completely holy and righteous, that if you try hard enough you can find a corner that was cut, or a customer that feels cheated. And my friend agreed.

So the problem isn't so much that there are Orthodox criminals. All Jews sin. For a Jew to pashut sin is not a chillul HaShem It's when the crime is associated with a specifically Jewish religious institution, or when the criminal figuratively wraps himself in a tallis and uses this as a defense, or to solicit support from the wider Orthodox community, that the behavior becomes genuinely scandalous and puts traditional Judaism in a bad light.

Just about all of us are beinonim. We're not angels. We have free will, and sometimes we fall. The question becomes, as Rav Steinsaltz says, how we react when we fall. Do we make excuses or do we do teshuva?

Believe him or not, at least Mel Gibson made a strongly worded apology for his recent drunken outburst, with no rationalizations or justifications.

Just once, when a Jewish criminal the likes of which Mr. Cohen mentioned gets caught, I'd like to see them make a public vidui, that indicates some kind of contrition.

And when the community also engages in denial or rationalization or attacking the messenger as Joel Cohen's Bio did at 8:28, it may be making a bigger chillul HaShem, than the criminal.

Anonymous said...

I would assume that Cohen is one lawyer who we can bet won't get hired by Margo.

Anonymous said...

He also gives speeches at another modern orthodox shul on West 72nd St. It must be a fringe leftist shul as other speakers include a woman professor of Talmud at the Conservative JTS and sex guru Dr Ruth Westheimer.

And so for this Joel Cohen is obviously much, much worse than a crook or a child molester, or someone who protects child molesters and intimidates victims to cover his own ass/ets. F.....morons.

Anonymous said...

I am going crazy from all this blogging. UOJ did this fantastic job of bringing the molestation issue to the forefront(I am against all this knocking of the big ones, and I think he is out of his fuc*ing mind when it comes to the Bal Shem Tov etc. etc. etc.) Why are we changing or adding issues
keep this one topic going until every single molester is gone, and every single parent is aware of what they need to keep there eyes open for now and forever.

PS. As kids we all know about Kolko. If not why the hell was there a rule in camp that he (one of the owners of the camp) was not allowed in the bunk house. duh!

Anonymous said...

Serial pedophile or fabricator?

Dan District Police arrest Bnei Brak resident who confessed to series of indecent acts involving 300 children, seek to extend custody

Dan District Police have arrested Bnei Brak resident Yitzhak Bohasilovsky (31), who voluntarily confessed to committing indecent acts against 300 children.

Police are still searching for the children who fell victim to his acts, while sending the suspect for observation.

Bohasilovsky was arrested Sunday following a complaint submitted by a mother, according to which the suspect touched her young son on a bus. Shortly afterwards, Dan District Police arrested the suspect and took him for interrogation at the police station.

To their surprise, during the investigation, Bohasilovsky began to detail a long list of hundreds of incidents in which he attacked young children. He told officers that he carried out the acts in public parks, buses, and in ritual baths – in almost every public place for the last 15 years. Investigators say he told them: "Help me, I'm a sick man."

Ronnie Schreiber said...

I am going crazy from all this blogging. UOJ did this fantastic job of bringing the molestation issue to the forefront(I am against all this knocking of the big ones, and I think he is out of his fuc*ing mind when it comes to the Bal Shem Tov etc. etc. etc.) Why are we changing or adding issues
keep this one topic going until every single molester is gone, and every single parent is aware of what they need to keep there eyes open for now and forever.

While the problem of sexual predators in our schools is, perhaps, the most pressing issue because of the potential harm done to children, UOJ and other critics of froomie nonsense recognize that it is symptomatic of a larger, more comprehensive problem - that much of the observant community has indeed gone off the derech of authentic Judaism. While there will always be sinners, the criminal activities and corruption the Jewish community is plagued with reflect the fact that all sorts of non-Jewish influences permeate our thinking.

In medicine, a disease may present a cluster of symptoms. To be sure, the individual symptoms need to be treated and the patient stabilized, but unless the physician recognizes that the symptoms are interrelated, and that there is an underlying illness that is ultimately causing them all, the patient will not get healthy. Many real world problems are like that.

Also, even when the symptoms are not related, the patient may be suffering from a variety of different illnesses that are the result of general poor health or age. There can be more than one thing going wrong at the same time. I'll give you an example from troubleshooting a piece of equipment.

My embroidery machine is pretty cool - I'm fascinated by the ability of humans to make really cool stuff and can watch machines work for hours. But it's also about 20 years old. Back in February I was in a panic. I had a big job to finish, and the control panel wouldn't work. Most of the time the machine wouldn't successfully get through the POST (power on self test - that's the beeping your PC makes when you first turn on the power, before the OS starts to load), and when it did, I was getting head up and ack not received errors. My mechanic charges $90/hour plus $125 for travel. The motherboard and other circuit boards cost hundreds each to rebuild or replace. I didn't really have the money for either, but a relative agreed to give me a short term loan if I needed it. I was going to Chicago for the media preview of the Chicago Auto Show, and called my mechanic to find out if he had some replacement boards, since his shop is near Jackson, more or less on my way back from Chicago. But I calmed down long enough to try to troubleshoot the problem myself. I'm a crappy human being but a good troubleshooter.

My mechanic here in Michigan and one of the guys who does electronic repair for me down in Texas are both religious Christians, who walk the talk, so they don't mind me picking their brains (and the guy in Texas loved the Arabic "Don't Mess With Texas" and "Don't Tread On Me" designs I sent him). Likewise, the Maltese guy in Jersey who has rebuilt a couple of my boards will help me diagnose things on the phone.

The first thing that one of them told me was to check the voltages. I got out my multimeter and checked the voltage taps on the motherboard and indeed the voltage was low. Cool, I thought, that's the problem. I adjusted the potentiometer on the power supply to get it in the proper operating range, and power cycled the machine.

This time it passed the POST. Excitement. Then disappointment - I was still getting control panel error messages. So I called the guy in NJ. He asked me if the pantogram arm was locked when the machine was powered up. The arm is what moves the media relative to the needle and solenoids lock it in place when the machine isn't stitching, so that if you have to remove a hoop from the machine for some reason, everything stays registered.

The arm was not locking properly. The guy told me that meant that two of the circuit boards were not communicating with each other, that I probably needed a new cable. I wiggled on end of that cable, and heard the solenoids click in. The connector was not seated properly.

After fiddling with the cable end I power cycled the machine. This time everything worked. Now, when I get those errors, or the control panel doesn't seem to control things, I know to reseat the cable connector.

Here's the mashal. There were two different problems, not directly related, but if I hadn't adjusted the voltage I would never have been able to diagnose the other problem. Likewise, the POST problem was intermittent because the voltage was just out of range. If I had found the loose cable first, I would have solved that problem, but not been able to use the machine reliably.

My guess is that UOJ is trying not to lose sight of the forest for the trees. Yes, individual trees need tending, but we have to recognize that there is a bigger picture.

Anonymous said...

Is this UOJ's blog or Ronnie Schreiber's personal journal? I see that Ronnie makes lame attempts to link his long winded diary entries to UOJ's war on terror, but give us a break.

Paul Mendlowitz said...


Your views were brilliantly articulated above. As Rabbi Blau has so eloquently said, we lack the rabbinic leadership with the ability to understand that Jewish law is just not only a conglomerate of laws on how to serve God, it is first and foremost a "derech hachaim" a roadmap of how a Jew should conduct his life in every aspect.

What is so devastating to me is that I recognized years ago, that the more frivolous and nonsensical chumras or stringencies are added to the "new" Shulchan Aruch, the more the "old" halachas are trampled on.

So while a woman is burning her Indian hair wig in a public bonfire, her husband is out preying on the vulnerable, whether in a yeshiva or in a bank....

So the mass genaivas PERMITTED and SANCTIONED by rabbis and rebbes, are a symptom of the bigger problem of the total trivialization of the derech hachaim that Hashem has given to us for our benefit, and instead substituted by charlatans for a Judaism void of real meaning.

Sanctioned stealing for the community benefit is what we now have, and of course that translates into, if you give tzedakah you may do the same.

Using batei din as a tool to mask the truth, is symbolic of the desperate straits all Orthodox Jews find themselves in.

Today it's molestation and tomorrow it could be the sanctioned killing of all "rodfim" and people who say it like it is, as ugly as it is.

Anonymous said...

You all seem to overlook the greatest dangers facing the Jewish people today--- chocolate that is made from stam cholov, and kosher pizza shops where boys actually talk to girls!Next thing you know,someone out there will choose to work for a living rather than go to kollel for 30 years,scmooze with all the other batlonim, and mooch off his father in law.!.................. Don't you know that the Ribbono Shel Olam wasn't serious when he warned us"Tzedek tzedek tirdof"?...By the way,if you want people to stop stealing,just say there is an obscure custom that some are noheg not to steal.They'll listen to that before they listen to the Torah!

Anonymous said...

TO UOJ THE GREAT ONE! i read your article about the BSHT- THE ARI-AND OTHER "GEDOILIM" dont make me think that you snapped and lost your marbles. you might not agree with me but i dealt with many of these chassidum that you so slandered that are pure ehrlich yidden that do no harm and know no harm you are right there are a lot of bad people in these chasidus as well and i suffered greatly from a molester that was in ger mesivtah when if the rabbonim of ger had only taken care of him when they got their first complaints it would not have happened to me but you can not slander the chasidus entirly and one more point please dont go to the yidden that lived before the "CHURBAN OF EUROPE"ITS REALLY NOT RELLIVENT the issue at hand is child molestation and some phony rabbis of today PLEASE UOJ LETS STICK WITH THIS iliked almost everything i read up until now, this article made me lose a % of respect for you but only a little bit so please stick with the issues of today wich has nothing to do with those "GEDOILIM"of then.I REALLY LIKE YOU UOJ! LEIZEROWITZ VICTIM FOREVER

Anonymous said...

aaron from L.A. said...
You all seem to overlook the greatest dangers facing the Jewish people today--- chocolate that is made from stam cholov, and kosher pizza shops where boys actually talk to girls
Aaron, let's not forget drinking unfiltered water, reading a secular newspaper on the subway or two couples going out for dinner together.

Anonymous said...


Nice story. Just curious if the folks in Jersey (Hirsch?) raped you for $90/hr. just to consult over the phone.

Anonymous said...

aaron from L.A. said

“…there is an obscure custom that some are noheg not to steal.”

Do you have any sources for this outrageous minhag or you just made it up ?

Ronnie Schreiber said...

Too Much Gobbledygook said...

Is this UOJ's blog or Ronnie Schreiber's personal journal? I see that Ronnie makes lame attempts to link his long winded diary entries to UOJ's war on terror, but give us a break.

Funny that you mention it. I am concerned that I was taking up too much bandwidth here, and spending too much time blogging in general. Someone mentioned to me that there are about 30 minutes a day of talking (or writing) that I do that would probably be better used towards something more directly productive in my life. I'm going to try to implement it and not comment here unless I really have something to contribute to the thread.

As for my lame attempt, it appears from a comment below yours, that UOJ felt it was appropriate.

Ronnie Schreiber said...

Un-Orthodox Jew said...


Your views were ... articulated above.

Your kind words are appreciated, but my ego is already overinflated. I'm just glad that I can contribute something to the discussion and the cause.

I do want to say, to those who question the value of UOJ's blog, that when I first found this blog I was incredibly disaffected. Shabbas and Yom Tov were worse than a chore. However, seeing that there were others who were alienated by froomie sh'tuyot that were somehow muddling through and maintaining a relationship to HaShem and the mesorah has been inspirational. This blog has helped keep me in the fold.

Of course, the froomies would rather I wasn't part of the flock.

Ronnie Schreiber said...

gross said...


Nice story. Just curious if the folks in Jersey (Hirsch?) raped you for $90/hr. just to consult over the phone.

Thank you, as well, for your kind words. AFAIK, Hirsch is in the business of financing machines, not repairing them - but I could be wrong. No, this was Masis Systems - Mike Masis specializes in older Melco machines - and this was a freebie. How's he going to sell me parts if we can't figure out which ones I need? He already got some of my money for rebuilding the driver board when I managed to fry most of the output transistors.

A lot of people who fix stuff for a living get a great deal of satisfaction just knowing that they diagnosed the problem correctly. Big bro services industrial machinery and he's like that. Me too. I could tell you a story illustrating it, and, yes, tie it into UOJ's efforts to fix the community, but that might offend Mr. Gobbledygook.

Ronnie Schreiber said...

aaron from L.A. said...
You all seem to overlook the greatest dangers facing the Jewish people today--- chocolate that is made from stam cholov, and kosher pizza shops where boys actually talk to girls
Aaron, let's not forget drinking unfiltered water, reading a secular newspaper on the subway or two couples going out for dinner together.

Not to mention couples holding hands and actually displaying affection to each other in public.

Ronnie Schreiber said...

St. Ignatius on Loyola said...

The patron saint of Father Marquette. Iggy might have been a bit of a masochist. No, for real. The painting of Iggy in St. Ignace, Michigan (on the north side of the bridge in the UP) has a cat o' nine tails he used to scourge himself. As cadillacs go, the Jesuits were the lamdanim. Though not exactly Jew-lovers, the Jesuits were not as bad as the Dominicans.

Ronnie Schreiber said...

Is this UOJ's blog or Ronnie Schreiber's personal journal?

Didn't your father ever teach you not to provoke the animals in the zoo?

Oh wait, my dad, z'tz'l', was a veterinarian and the zoo director was a personal friend of his.

Anyway, I got up fairly late and spent much of the day cleaning my office, mostly getting the rats' nest of phone wires, usb cables and surge protectors behind my work bench coiled up and organized. I mounted a duplex outlet on the back of my work bench so I didn't have to use an extension cord. My Tripp-Lite line conditioner / voltage stabilizer was humming when I used my power drill so it might be reaching the end of its useful life. Just before 5PM, I got my bike gear together and headed for Broder Bros. in Plymouth to pick up some navy baseball hats so I can make some samples of my Olde English Daled design to give to the three judaica shops I do business with. The Tigers were rained out today, but still have the best record in Major League Baseball, and are 5.5 games up on the Sox and Twins. Time to start selling some caps. On the way to Broder Bros. stopped at LaSalle Bank to cash a check for some of my Mah Fish Falastin / Ummat Is'rail Hayya shirts in Arabic. I had to talk my way in because one of the tellers was locking the door early. Banks are the only business that will lock a door in the face of a customer. Then I finished my ride out to Plymouth, taking mostly Nine Mile Road, then the bike path next to 275, Haggerty to Five Mile, cutting through Hines Park for a minute or two, then to Sheldon Rd. and the industrial park where Broder is. The folks at Broder are first rate in terms of customer service. On the way out of the industrial park I stopped by Lotus Engineering's former building to look at the illuminated sign and get the sign company's name in case I want to call them to see if I can schnorr the now abandoned sign panels - I have a '66 Elan taken apart in my ex's garage and I'm a big fan of that company. The ride home was okay, though it was getting a little chilly and the wind was uncharacteristically out of the northeast so it was in may face most of the way home. I didn't really hammer it - most of the way there my avg was a bit over 15.5 mph, though it dropped to 14.1 for the round trip. Total distance was 45.15 miles. Top speed was 30.4 mph - most likely as I dropped into one of the valleys in the Rouge River system. Elapsed riding time was just shy of 3:11. Something was making a clicking noise, either my bottom bracket or the front axle. Both haven't been serviced for a while - I hope I can afford it. My right knee, well actually my pateler tendon, was a little sore but not too bad. I have a new saddle, that I'm just getting used to, so I might need some hand creme in my shorts tomorrow. I'm doing a 100 mile charity ride this Sunday, im yirtzeh HaShem for P'tach (anyone want to sponsor me?). Took a shower and had a couple of burgers for dinner. I like to sweat, but it always feels great to have a hot shower and get all that salt off of me. Now I'm catching up on the day's news (looks like another case of sudden jihadi syndrome by a Muslim in an SUV in San Fran - 14 people hit and run with one dead and the reports seem to indicate it was in a Jewish neighborhood). After I finish surfing and blogging, I'll finish up some caps for Quality Sound, my cousin's son's sound reinforcement company.

Real exciting life, huh?

Anonymous said...

Hey shvitzer, hand creme in your shorts? Oh goodness! Why doesn't Ronnie share with us what kind of condiments he tops his burgers with?

Anonymous said...

Another reason I think Ronnie is a loser is because he tops his hamburgers with Hellman's mayonnaise which Rabbi Gornish says is not acceptable.

Anonymous said...

Isn't it funny that Gornish has that big mayonnaise hangup. If only he'd be as careful with bug infested veggies at his restaurants while his clueless mashgichim are asleep at the wheel.

Ronnie Schreiber said...

Too Much Gobbledygook said...

Hey shvitzer, hand creme in your shorts? Oh goodness!

I was going to say chamois creme (pronounced "shammy" in English), but I realized that I was going to be read by vocabulary impaired froomies. Let's see you ride a bike for 2 miles without complaining about something, let alone 45 miles. Most froomies would drive a half a block, 45 mph in a residential neighborhood, blowing stop signs, because they are "late for mincha" (true story). Maybe that's why so many froomie women are so svelte. Frankly, the bike saddle and saddle soreness is less of a PITA than froomies.

Tuvya said...

Another reason I think Ronnie is a loser is because he tops his hamburgers with Hellman's mayonnaise which Rabbi Gornish says is not acceptable.

You obviously don't know me. Mayo is so goyishe. New York froomies with their "tiger sauce", mixing chrain w/ mayo, are practicing an abomination. I prepare my burgers with ketchup (Heinz is preferred, even if the Heinz widow is a lefty moonbat) on one side, mustard (Woelber's honey mustard is preferred, though French's is fine) on the other, and a slice of tomato. Raw onions are also an abomination, except in gazpacho. On my hot dogs, if available, I prefer ketchup, mustard, diced tomato and sauerkraut. Though I've made real mayo from scratch, when a recipe has called for it, for sandwich spread and salads (tuna, chicken, fake crab) I prefer Miracle Whip (have always had a taste for sweet and sour stuff - my Bubbe, z'tz'l, made an outstanding sweet and sour whitefish).

Though I have known a froomie who insisted that because mayo is white, it "has to be milchik".

Ronnie Schreiber said...

Speaking of food, I heard that Yitzi Peking, in Bala Cynwyd, (Philadelphia) PA is outstanding. A friend was just in Philly and he said they were so busy that he almost had to use take-out.

Eclectic Asian cuisine and a fresh Sushi bar.
Reservations suggested.
(484) 562-YITZ (9489)
145 Montgomery Avenue

Anonymous said...

Minhag Against Stealing: I'll admit the minhag against theft and cheating is something I drew out of thin air.Perhaps some super- fummies will now consider adopting it as if it were the minhag of some rebbe who also ruled that four-cornered bread slices are chayav b'tztiztis.(Since bread crumbs may get on your clothing,they should be considered 'clothing'). Incidentally,I understand that that Torah sh'bichsav is being renamed "Hagahos HaKadush Baruch Hu al HaShas"

Anonymous said...

Regarding Mayonaise:
The Gematria of Mayonnaise in Hebrew is 103.The 103rd word in the Torah is "Ken." From he we see that Hashem approves of mayonnaise.Case closed.....

Anonymous said...


Rabbi Gornish does not ban all Mayo - it's only Hellman's he has a problem with.

Anonymous said...

regarding mr.cohen's article. first of all i have one question why haven't the square rebbie or other rebbies been asked for publication if stealing from the government is wrong?
regarding chassidim in general.we all understand they belive in a middle man.they dont understand the concept of hashgocas prutious.that in itself is a problem.but without chassidim i would say at least 75% of jews would be lost.

Ronnie Schreiber said...

Flatbush Fresser said...


Rabbi Gornish does not ban all Mayo - it's only Hellman's he has a problem with.

I bet he doesn't object to Best's. Of course, it's the identical product as Hellman's. The slogan "Bring out the Hellman's, Bring out the Best" is used because west of the Mississippi the product is marketed under the Best brand.

TechnoYid said...

This article (and many {but not all} of the comments) point out a fact that is tearing the Orthodox communities apart from within:

The casual acceptance of improper behavior

The boy-touchers, the baby-rapers are just an obvious symptom. On another blog, Orhonomics, in the discussion of what is submitted to a tuition committee when families are looking for a reduction in tuition, it became apparent that many of the committee members assume that the IRS 1040's that are submitted are lies. I'm flabbergasted! I've been submitting those to tuition committees for years, and I've NEVER even considered falsifying the information. After all, doing something illegal is a chillul Hashem.

Yet, it is considered commonplace to cheat on taxes. Tip O'Neal had a phrase for it: "Defining Deviancy Down."

That is exactly what we (collectively) have done. Since it is okay to cheat on taxes, then it become okay to cheat a non-Jew, then it becomes okay to cheat a Jew, then it becomes okay to kill, (bad) touch, or rape.

I'm not throwing in the towel. As Reb Zusya said, "When brought to judgement above, they won't ask me if I've been a tzaddik, but if I've been Zusya." That is the best that "Zusya" had the potential to be. These discussions are important. While I (and I'm sure many others) dislike how UOJ exposes the soft underbelly of Orthodoxy, I firmly believe that it is important that he (and others like him {and I'm assuming it is a "him"}) continue to press these issues to the forefront.

Anonymous said...

Joel Cohen is a far-left, pro-illegal immigrant, pro-NAMBLA, anti-gun, pro-abortion, communist anti-Semite from the Tikun rag, and himself represents/protects such criminals. He uses the article to bash Judaism, while trying to save his vermin client's hides.

The fact that hassidim are shameless thieves and frauds has nothing to do with Judaism: au-contraire, it has everything to do with the fact that hassidism is a predecessor of reform, and that Judaism is not being taught in hassidic institutions. Cohen's claim that the adherence to halachic hair-splitting is the cause of criminality and its acceptance is bull. Aren't the hasidim the first ones to constantly proclaim that "warmth", "ahavas Hashem" and "yiras Hashem" are more important than rigid adherence to halocha? Just watch them fress kigel before davening, soak their pot-bellies in steaming hot mikvahs on shabbos, just so "they can daven better" (shacharis starts at 10 AM) and so on ad nauseum.

The halocha has a very clear stance on the crimes mentioned in Jerk Cohen's article: "Dina DeMalchusa Dina" - the law of the kingdom is the law. David Twerski YM"S never had a problem with Bill Clinton his lovely wife Hitlary, nor darling Lewinski babe. Donating rifles to the palestinians, promoting promiscuity in the public education system, ripping our borders open, ransacking the treasury, selling top nuclear secrets to china, outsourcing American industry to Mexico and China are no concern to Mr. Twersky, as long as his filthy little village gets filthy rich. Why should he care about halocha if he gets to pocket all those Benjy Franklins?

The fact is that ethics and moral behavior, such as described in pirkei ovos, are null and inexistent in the hassidic commuinty, but prominent in bona-fide Judaism. In the modern day Sodom and Gomorrah (a.k.a. New Skwer and Kiryas Yoel) stealing from the government, insurance companies, businesses and private people, be they Jews, hassidim or otherwise, is not an aveira but a mitzvah.

Hassidim aren't educated to decent Judaism but to buffoon (Rebbe, ADMO"R) worship and self-worship. In hassidc communities one cannot get married without $20,000 ugly & grotesque furniture and $5000 outfitting, so they go to schnorr, steal, defraud, embezzle and beg for freebies and handouts. All they want is "money for nothing and chicks for free". Hasidim in general are uneducated lowlives who grow up kowing nothing about Yiddishkeit nor goyishkeit, only hearing their evil "rabbis" preach about "kedishe ind tohoooooorah" and oylom haatzilus and middas hayesod, and after they get married they get out on the real streets of life for the first time, what can you expect from them? When they discover that their only values in life -gartel, schtreimel, tish, kigel and the zilber set- are empty nonsense (at least without a strong backbone of gemorah, Jewish history, Jewish philosophy and Tanak"h), all of their values are gone.

But this doesn't justify their faithful liar, um lawyer, Jo-hell Cohen to deride Judaism about which he knows nothing. He should be thrown in a locked cell with togethr with the Skwerer and the holy Satmar brothers.

Anonymous said...

The primary reason for the fraud among the ultra-orthodox is the insularity and dismissal of all concern of outsiders.

There is a second less noticed factor. America is very segregated along economic lines. Most people do not associate with those with significantly more or less money. Thus, those with less money do not notice as much that they have less money than others. Ultra-orthodox society is not really segregated by income. When I was in Yeshiva we had students whose families were very wealthy and students whose families had no money. If they weren't religious, the poor students would have gone to public schools, and the rich students to expensive private schools. This realization of the economic disparity creates a greater importance to having money. Because Chassidim cannot obtain professional degrees, a greater percentage of them go into business. The wealth gap between those who are successful and those who are not is going to be greater among people in business is going to be greater than for people who are professionals.

Anonymous said...

Please Remember:
The Gemara says “Rov Ganvei Yisroel Haim” (The majority of Thieves are Jewish)

It does not say “Rov YISROEL Ganvei Haim”

A K’siva V’Chasima Tova to all

Anonymous said...

ELIEZER ( LOUIS ) Kestenbaum was also arrested with the rabbi of spinka as being a part of the money laundering team. Kestenbaum is the president of the ODA organization in Williamsburg brooklyn NY

JewishJournal.com said...

The Spinka money trail --
and the informant who brought them down

By Amy Klein

The first snow flutters hesitantly in Brooklyn. Men wearing fur streimel hats and women wearing sheitls walk briskly past the corner of 15th Avenue and 58th Street in Boro Park as if nothing extraordinary has happened here.

And why not? The kosher shops of this self-contained ultra-Orthodox neighborhood -- practically a city onto itself -- are still a few blocks down, and here on this bleak corner, there are only three orange school buses parked in front of a four-story, dark-red brick building, which sits on a residential street, where tall, narrow houses nearly overlap. The structure is rather nondescript and unimposing -- garbage bags are piled haphazardly by a front gate, bars protect the windows, young boys can be heard chanting from behind the locked door and a white sign with sky blue Hebrew lettering reads: "Yeshiva Imrei Yosef Spinka."

A buzzer sounds. The door opens. No one asks who rang the bell. Up the four steps, a reception window sits empty. Hazy yellow fluorescent lights illuminate the narrow hallways adorned with graying yellow paint and frayed industrial carpeting. If there are millions -- or even thousands -- of dollars going to the Spinka yeshiva, it certainly doesn't seem like it's coming here.

This despite the fact that on Dec. 19, 2007, the U.S. Attorney General's Office filed an indictment in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California naming the Chasidic yeshiva and four other Spinka organizations, as well as eight people, in a multimillion dollar tax fraud and money-laundering ring that stretched from Brooklyn to Los Angeles to Israel and elsewhere.

continued ..


KateGladstone said...

Re Gary Friedman's statement that "it is our nature as Jews to come to G-d for the wrong reasons" --

why, specifically, did he call this "our nature as Jews" instead of simply our nature as human beings?

Duvid Walter said...


MONTICELLO – A patron at a restaurant on Broadway in Monticello has been charged with three counts of menacing in the second degree, misdemeanors, for allegedly pointing his licensed .38 cal. handgun at three of employees there.

David Walter, 43, of Brooklyn, is an occasional patron at the eatery called Shwarma King and is not the owner as we incorrectly stated earlier.

At 1:20 a.m. Wednesday, police received a 911 call from the facility. Three male employees claimed Walter was hitting on two female workers and the men stepped in to intercede when Walter allegedly pulled the gun and aimed it at him.

Monticello Police seized the gun and his permit. He will appear before Judge Frank LaBuda for a hearing to determine if his permit will be reinstated.

Anonymous said...


According to Vidyid, Duvid Walter fresses at Shwarma King because he is the owner of nearby Oneg Bakery.

Oneg Bakery (845) 791-7048 19 Waverly Ave, Monticello, NY

Not clear who the hashgocho is but they shouldn't be machshir people who act like this.

Bim Bam identity said...

August 17, 2009

Obama Administration Says Marriage Law Unfair

Filed at 10:40 a.m. ET

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Obama administration filed court papers Monday claiming a federal marriage law discriminates against gays, even as government lawyers continue to defend the law.

Shmarya groupie said...

(AP)- Banks expanded at a breathtaking pace over the past five years, adding more than 10,000 full-service branches, but barely 1 in 10 were in inner-city, minority neighborhoods, another sign the financial spending spree skipped over substantial parts of the country.

Under the Community Reinvestment Act, banks are encouraged to offer services in poor and minority neighborhoods.

James Ballantine, a senior vice president with the American Bankers Association, said banks that don't comply can be required to enter into agreements with regulators, fined or even lose their charter.

Anonymous said...

What happened in Torah Vodaas in June against Rav Sekula shlita is
horrifying, despicable and a big chillul Hashem. Rav Sekula was an incredible mivater and if anyone
wants brochos from a mivater before Yom Hadin, It's Rav Sekula. People should be lining up in front of him for brochas.

R' Yisroel Reisman (within 24 hours of the incident?) has been telling people he has charata for what he did.

Tendler mindset said...


It seemed only appropriate that the memorial for Felix Brinkmann, the 90-year-old Holocaust survivor, was held Sunday at O’Flanagan’s, a bar around the corner from his Upper East Side apartment.

After all, that is where he came up with the idea for Adam’s Apple, the well-known disco he ran from the 1970s through the early 1990s. It was also where he celebrated his 90th birthday last November.

On Sunday, friends and family gathered there to share stories about his unusual life. Coming less than three weeks after Mr. Brinkmann was found bound and strangled in his apartment in what the police say was a robbery, it could have been a solemn event. But the tone was mostly celebratory, with several of the two dozen attendees saying that Mr. Brinkmann would have delighted in all the fuss he received.

“He loved being the center of attention,” said a close friend of the family. “But he wouldn’t have wanted to be remembered for how he went out. He would have wanted to be remembered for how he lived: the family, the friends, the women. Good God, there were a lot of women.”

Mr. Brinkmann’s lifelong love of the ladies was a constant topic among the attendees, who chatted over beer, recounting his coy euphemisms and surprising candor. A slide show of his life included pictures of him with dozens of different women. Even his granddaughter told how at his last birthday party he had approached one of her friends with a typical come-on: “I’m so bad I’m good.”

Several people said they had not seen Mr. Brinkmann since his disco days. They recounted their memories of a warmhearted businessman who complemented his suits with a gold Scorpio medallion around his neck, and who would approach women with a standard line: “My name is Felix. Like Felix the Cat.”

“I must have heard that 1,000 times,” said Joe Druckman, 51, a bartender at the club for seven years in the 1980s. “He loved women and they all loved him.”

The story of Felix Brinkmann’s life is full of twists and turns that seem yanked from a movie script.

He moved to Germany from Latvia during World War II, apparently unaware that his Jewish background would make life there impossible. He survived internment in three concentration camps, then assumed a dead man’s identity to immigrate to the United States. His wife also survived the Holocaust and moved to the United States; the couple later divorced.

Since 1994 he had worked as a manager at a building in the Bronx owned by his former disco partner. Julio Rodriguez, who also worked there, said he had looked after the elderly man recently following a hospitalization. He made sure that he took his medicine and stuck to a healthy diet. But there was one piece of advice that Mr. Brinkmann steadfastly refused. “I advised him to stay away from certain people, certain girls,” Mr. Rodriguez said, “but it was very difficult for him. He loved girls.

“I told him: ‘Find one girl. You’re going to get in trouble.’ ”

On July 29, Mr. Brinkmann apparently invited Angela Murray, 30, into his apartment at 435 East 65th Street for what his son Rick Brinkman believes was a sexual liaison. She arrived with a man. The next day Mr. Brinkmann was found lying face-down in his bed, his hands bound behind his back with a sheet. He appeared to have been struck in the back of the head and died of compression of the neck. The apartment had been ransacked. Ms. Murray and two men whom the police describe as her accomplices, Alujah Cutts, 27, and Hasib Cutts, 30, were charged with murder, robbery and burglary.

Sipping a Corona on Sunday, Carle Brinkman, Mr. Brinkmann’s 29-year-old granddaughter, said that she was shocked and upset by his violent death, but she suggested that her grandfather might have reacted differently. “He would have loved this,” she said. “I could never have seen him in a deathbed or a wheelchair. He’d be proud that we were talking about the number of ladies he’s known.”

Chicago Askan said...


In Parshas Mishpatim, the Torah warns against taking bribes. “Do not take bribes, because bribes ‎blinds the eyes of the bright ones (Pikchim) and changes the words of the righteous”.‎

In Parshas Shoftim, the Torah again warns against bribery, but uses a different wording. “Do not take ‎bribes, because bribes blinds the eyes of the wise ones (Chachamim) and changes the words of the ‎righteous”.‎

What is the difference between the two descriptions?‎

A Pikeach is one who is steeped in knowledge of the business world, practical business acumen and ‎contractual wording etc. in addition to Torah knowledge.

A Chacham is one who is knowledgeable of ‎Torah.‎

The Torah warns that bribery WILL affect the ability to think objectively both in the laws of Torah, as ‎well as in practical business applications. Any person under the influence of a bribe, a threat, or other ‎mind altering pressure must take a pass and not make a decision.‎

The problem of criminality in our community lies squarely on the shoulders of the Rabbinate.‎

‎1] When the rabbinate is made aware of actual criminal behaviors committed with intent to harm ‎others, they are blind. All they see is the “Sheineh Yid” who gave this and that donation. All other ‎information is deemed a lie and unworthy of further investigation. The Orthodox criminals act with ‎impunity knowing that the rabbi, the de facto voice of the community is behind him; he becomes ‎emboldened to further pursue his criminal behaviors. The rabbinate is in effect aiding and abetting ‎Orthodox criminal behaviors.‎

‎2] When a Jew is a victim of the Orthodox criminal, the victim is warned by the rabbinic enablers of the ‎criminal of the Eleventh Commandment, “Though shall not pursue charges with civil authorities”. The ‎victim is forced to make a claim in a Bais Din of rabbis with no oversight over their financial dealings or ‎outside influences. Every claimant knows exactly what the rabbis will decide even before any ‎information is presented. The Orthodox criminal by virtue of his donor power has a decided advantage ‎‎(Hint,Hint)! Again, the rabbinate is aiding and abetting Orthodox criminal behaviors.‎

The simplest solution is:‎

As soon as an Orthodox criminal is charged, the FBI investigates every Rabbi and charity associated ‎with him. They were his enablers and gave tacit approval to his behaviors and take part of the blame ‎for who he became. Cold iron handcuffs accomplish more than any apologetics, condemnations, ‎speeches, and hand wringing can. ‎

Anonymous said...

The day or within days of Rav Schorr's heart attack, the board had
a goy knock wood boards across Rav Schorr's office door so he couldn't
get in. Mr. Neuhouse, who was head of operations at the time, called the goy over told him to undo it and then he quit.

Morton Salkind said...


NEWARK — A developer who pleaded guilty to tax evasion and agreed to pay $17 million back to the government will be sentenced here on Thursday in a politically charged case that has surfaced as an issue in the New Jersey governor’s race.

The developer, Morton Salkind, was prosecuted in 2008 by the United States attorney’s office while it was headed by Christopher J. Christie, the Republican who is now challenging Gov. Jon S. Corzine.

Mr. Salkind was allowed to plead guilty last year to one count of evading $276,000 in taxes in 2001, an amount that called for a sentence of 18 to 24 months, but sentencing guidelines raised the possibility that he could avoid prison altogether.

The government said he falsified records and inflated expenses to conceal $5.8 million in revenue and $813,000 in profit while building a residential community in Rockaway, N.J. But prosecutors also said that he and his wife concealed millions of dollars in income between 2000 and 2005, and he agreed to pay $17 million in back taxes, interest and civil penalties before his sentencing.

Mr. Salkind is represented by Herbert J. Stern, a mentor and political donor to Mr. Christie, whose relationship with Mr. Christie during Mr. Christie’s tenure as prosecutor has been the focus of sustained Democratic attacks. Among other things, Mr. Christie gave Mr. Stern a lucrative contract to monitor the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. And a Stern client, Stryker Orthopedics, was the only one of five makers of hip and knee implants investigated over improper payments to physicians that avoided paying a heavy fine. Mr. Christie also hired Mr. Stern’s son shortly before leaving the United States attorney’s office.

In July, a former business partner of Mr. Salkind’s filed suit in federal court in Philadelphia alleging that Mr. Christie’s office ignored evidence of tens of millions of dollars in fraud, money laundering and tax evasion by Mr. Salkind and his wife that the partner had provided to the I.R.S. The former partner, Samuel Yarosh, claims Mr. Salkind cut him out of millions of dollars in profit from the Rockaway project.

The lawsuit cited news reports about Mr. Christie’s political ties to Mr. Stern and another partner at Mr. Stern’s firm, and claimed Mr. Salkind was given a slap on the wrist because of the lawyers’ “close personal relationship” with Mr. Christie.

YTT English Dept said...


In his bestselling novel “Lord of the Flies,” William Golding vividly reminded readers of the primal side of man that lurks beneath his civilized demeanor. The Nobel Prize-winning author was apparently no stranger to barbaric behavior: in an unpublished memoir composed for his wife, Mr. Golding wrote that he tried to rape a 15-year-old girl when he was a young man, The Times of London reported. The account of the incident written by Mr. Golding, who died in 1993, was discovered by John Carey, the chief book reviewer of The Sunday Times of London and an emeritus professor of English literature at Oxford University, who is the author of a coming biography, “William Golding: The Man Who Wrote ‘Lord of the Flies,’” and who had access to Mr. Golding’s archives. In the unpublished memoir, called “Men, Women & Now,” Mr. Golding wrote that he had tried to rape a friend, whom he calls Dora, after he returned home at age 18 from his first year at Oxford.

Mayer Reiss said...


Traces of cocaine found on up to 90% of dollar bills in American cities

Anonymous said...


August 7, 2009 The current economic downturn has once again proven the truth of the adage that there is no free lunch in economic matters. In my opinion it is true in general life and in spiritual life as well. Many of the current problems, scandals and issues that have beset our world can be attributed to this attitude that many people have - that a free lunch is always present and eatable without later consequences. Thus complete reliance on political arm twisting in order to obtain governmental welfare largesse, which initially appears to be a lavish free lunch, carries with it great costs.

It creates a dependency mentality that permeates a large section of our society and is generational in its effects. It creates a culture of begging and eventually of cheating and dishonesty, with a false impression that somehow stealing from the government is not really stealing. It turns other citizens against us, seeing us as being basically predatory, extortionist and above all lazy and dishonest.

I am aware of a case where a man who traveled often to collect money solely on his own behalf, when he passed away, the asset that his sons fought about and actually contested in a rabbinic court was his list of donors. A generation brought up to believe that there is no necessity for it to work in order to make a living for one’s family is doomed to a spiritual and social disaster - and eventual self-destruction. There is no free lunch for anyone in this world.

However, the culture that demands that young men be supported indefinitely by struggling in-laws also convinces a large section of young people that a free lunch is not only possible but it is to be justifiably expected. This is also running into some opposition now because of the diminished economic realities of our current situation. But in my opinion it is morally and practically an indefensible position. It causes heartbreak and division within families and it undoubtedly fosters a family of dysfunction and dependency.

The cost in mental and physical health to all concerned is enormous and continuous. Yet many young couples in our society are convinced that they are entitled. But only later to their dismay do they realize that the lunch is not free in any respect. That such a system is encouraged by responsible religious and educational leaders is deeply troubling to me. Our children and grandchildren should be educated and trained to be self sufficient, independent and to realize and believe that there is really no free lunch for anyone in this world.

It is interesting to note that there are Israeli governmental policies that also seem to be based upon the false notion that a free lunch is available. The relationship of Israel with the rest of the world, especially with the United States , also was based on the false premise that we are entitled because of the Holocaust and the sympathy engendered thereby to the Jews. But that also was a false notion whose influence has long ago dissipated. The reliance on the Holocaust as a defense for our national existence as a state in the Land of Israel was a mistaken free ride from the start.

Ben Gurion was wise enough to tell the Peel Commission in 1936 that the Bible was our deed to the Holy Land . Ben Gurion in spite of being a secular agnostic was an Eastern European Jew whose grandfather had taken him to a Chasidic rebbe to receive a blessing. His successors in office in the main never had such beliefs and never expressed them publicly to the world till now. They relied on an illusory free lunch that no longer exits, no matter how many Holocaust courses and museums are created and financed.

Not believing in the eternal truth of our own God given cause has led us to lose our standing in the eyes of the world. That free lunch has turned out to be quite expensive as the current diplomatic situation clearly has shown. My friends, all rumors to the contrary not withstanding, there really is no free lunch.

Shabbat shalom.

Berel Wein

Queens said...

Stay away from Danny's Cleaners next to the kosher Chinese restaurant at Union Turnpike and 190th St.

People have had incidents with them and stopped patronizing them. The latest involves where Danny's just presses garments and gives them back without cleaning them. The garments clearly smell but the mechutzef owners deny it to your face and act like you are crazy.

Lakewood said...

Please be Mispallel for Rebbitzen Miriam bas Sara Salomon, the wife of the Lakewood Mashgiach, HaRav Mattisyahu Salomon Shlita.

Chassidishe shvitzer said...


I got confused & said Tashlich 2 months early.

Dr. Bungalow Putz Neuhoff said...

Why can't UOJ report on something of importance for a change?


Traffic on Rte. 17 even worse than usual

Music fest and construction add to awful Sunday

Shloime Weider, Irving Langer and Yoel Goldstein said...


BY Clare Trapasso

Monday, August 17th 2009, 6:09 AM

A Queens state politician has stepped in to try to mediate increasing tensions between longtime Corona residents and formerly homeless tenants recently placed in the neighborhood by the city.

Assemblyman José Peralta brought the two sides together to air their issues with each other - and the tenants' landlord - at a town hall meeting Thursday.

Locals claimed there has been more crime in the community since their new neighbors moved into 38-01 and 38-09 112th St. Tenants accused their landlord, CI House LLC, of being a "slumlord" that neglected to make repairs in their 55 subsidized apartments.

"We need to make sure everyone's quality of life is protected," said Peralta (D-Jackson Heights). "Hopefully, this can be resolved."

Problems at the buildings date back to 2007, when they came under new ownership. Soon afterward, some rent-stabilized tenants reported they were being harassed and, in some cases, locked out of their apartments.

Peralta and Borough President Helen Marshall said those actions were part of a campaign by the landlord, Solomon Weider, to get a city contract to house homeless people in the buildings.

The city's Department of Homeless Services later backed away from a deal with Weider after learning of the accusations.

But in October 2008, the agency quietly began moving formerly homeless people into the apartments, saying the company managing the buildings had been sold to a new owner, Irving Langer.

"A lot of tension is due to the way the landlord handled the situation," said Brian Flynn, 51, of Maspeth, who grew in the neighborhood where his family still lives. "Nobody trusts [Weider]."

Locals griped last week that they've seen more vandalism in the community since their neighbors moved in.

Meanwhile, tenants in 38-01 and 38-09 112th said their apartments are badly in need of repairs, infested with insects and plagued by mold.

Joel Goldstein, who represented CI House at the Thursday meeting, pledged, "All reasonable repairs will be done within two to three weeks."

Anonymous said...

Filed at 3:13 p.m. ET

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Charles Schwab Corp was sued by New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, who accused the discount brokerage of fraudulently misleading investors about the safety of auction-rate securities.

UOJ Gets Results said...

California resort offers $19 'survivor' package

SAN DIEGO (Reuters) – For their one-and-only family getaway this year, the Billingtons checked in to an upscale San Diego resort on Sunday with many of the usual vacation accessories -- bathing suits, board games and golf clubs.

But they also brought flashlights, sleeping bags and an inflatable mattress because the pool-side room they booked for just $19 comes with a tent where the beds normally would be. They even had to pack their own Belsky brand toilet paper.

UOJ Gets Results said...

New Square fugitive held without bail on federal fraud charges

By Steve Lieberman • slieberm@lohud.com • August 17, 2009

NEW YORK - A federal judge today ordered a former New Square village clerk held without bail on charges he helped steal tens of millions of dollars in federal anti-poverty programs and then fled the country in the late 1990s.

Avrum David Friesel, 57, was extradited to the United States on Aug. 7 from London, where he was arrested last year after eluding authorities since 1997.

His next scheduled court appearances is Sept. 9 in U.S. District Court. His lawyer, William Komaroff of Manhattan, declined comment.

Friesel, a son of New Square's only mayor, and six other men were accused of defrauding federal and state subsidy programs to benefit themselves and others living in New Square.

One of the schemes described in a 64-count indictment included an $11.6 million fraud that bilked state and federal education programs, mostly for nonexistent students supposedly enrolled in a Judaic studies program run through Rockland Community College. Rockland repaid $5.1 million of the stolen money.

Five of the defendants also were convicted of creating a phony religious school in Brooklyn to steal millions more in education aid after the RCC scam.

Friesel appeared today before Judge Barbara Jones, who oversaw the sentencing of five of Friesel's co-defendants. She ordered him held without bail.

Seven people were charged in the conspiracy, which ran for two decades, that was concealed by the use of false names and bank accounts and fraudulent income tax returns, according to federal prosecutors.

Among the programs defrauded were federal and state tuition assistance grants, a Small Business Administration program to aid small, minority-owned companies, the Section 8 rental subsidy program and an insurance benefit program run by the Social Security Administration.

Friesel and two other men fled before an 11-week trial in 1999 brought convictions against Kalman Stern, Jacob Elbaum and Benjamin Berger of New Square and David Goldstein of New York City.

Their sentences, which ranged up to 70 months in prison, were commuted by President Clinton to between 24 and 30 months in January 2001. The New Square grand rabbi met with Clinton and his wife, then senator-elect Hillary Rodham Clinton, in December 2000 at the White House after the community gave its bloc vote to Hillary Clinton.

A fifth man, Chaim Berger, 79, a founder of New Square in the 1950s, died in prison in 2004 of cancer. Berger had been arrested in Israel in 1998 and extradited to the United States. He got 20 years after admitting he had masterminded the fraud.

A seventh man, Nathan Adler, also known as Abraham Godlewsky, is still on the run.

Anonymous said...

Irving Langer is said to be involved with infamous slumlord Baruch Singer.

Langer, the president of Tiferes Yisroel in Flatbush, is a major supporter of Ohel & Chofetz Chaim.

Jay Weinberg said...


A Queens man already on parole for Medicaid fraud has been charged with stealing $41,000 from three women he was dating after promising them large returns on investments they made with him.

The arrest is the result of a joint investigation between the District Attorney’s Office and the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

Jay Weinberg, 57, of Flushing is charged with third degree grand larceny and first degree scheme to defraud. He faces up to seven years in prison if convicted and is due back in court Aug. 14.

Prosecutors said that from February 2008 to May 2009, Weinberg met the women on Internet dating sites such as Facebook.com and JDate.com. He pursued romantic relationships with them, and then convinced them to invest in his phony Valley Stream-based investment company, Kensington Orientals, by promising returns of up to 85%. One victim gave Weinberg $25,000, while two others gave him $10,000 and $6,000.

In all three cases the money was never invested and was instead deposited into Weinberg’s personal and business accounts.

Weinberg is currently on parole for a 1988 Medicaid fraud conviction. He served more than five years in prison for billing Medicaid for $16 million in services that were never provided at the Brooklyn medical clinic he ran with his father.

Neuhoff must be against this said...


Vulgar vendor

A food vendor on E. 11th St. at First Ave. was arrested Thurs., Aug. 6, for groping a woman customer waiting for her order around 4 a.m. Thurs., Aug. 6, according to charges filed by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office. The vendor, Benbahi Salah, 29, of Brooklyn, was charged with sexual abuse and was free on parole pending an Oct. 2 court appearance.

’Net nightmare

A Bronx resident, 41, told police he was drugged and sodomized last week by an East Village man he met via the Internet. The victim said that while visiting the suspect’s apartment on E. 13th St. near First Ave. during the early hours of Fri., Aug. 7, he drank a glass of juice than made him pass out, according to a New York Post article. He was naked and bleeding from the rectum when he awoke, according to the report.

Anonymous said...

Any relation? Moishy Koenig from YTT goes by the name Mark Koenig at his law firm.


Mark Kevin Koenig of Palm Beach Gardens, disbarred effective 30 days from the date of a June 18 court order. Koenig accepted an excessive fee to represent a client in a murder case for which he was not qualified. He also held trust funds from settlement proceeds belonging to several clients, but failed to pay their medical bills to a particular company. When inquiries were made by the company regarding the outstanding bills, Koenig failed to respond. A Florida Bar audit determined that Koenig had shortages in his trust account and had intentionally misappropriated funds.

UOJ Gets Results said...

U.S. Indicts 3 in Theft of 130 Million Bank Cards

Published: August 17, 2009

Federal prosecutors announced on Monday what they said was the largest computer hacking and identity theft case ever, a scheme in which more than 130 million credit and debit card numbers were stolen.

Three men were indicted on charges of being responsible for five corporate data breaches. The card numbers were stolen from the payment processor Heartland Payment Systems, 7-Eleven and the supermarket chain Hannaford Brothers, the prosecutors said in a statement. The suspects also hacked two unidentified corporate victims, the United States attorney’s office in New Jersey said in the statement.

Prosecutors say that Albert Gonzalez, 28, of Miami, and two unnamed Russian co-conspirators focused on large corporations by using the list of Fortune 500 companies and exploring corporate Web sites before setting out to identify vulnerabilities.

The suspects would seek to sell the data to others who would use it to make fraudulent purchases, the statement said.

In one example, the suspects went to stores to identify the type of checkout machines they used. After further investigation into the companies’ computer systems, they uploaded information onto servers that worked as hacking platforms, the statement said.

“These servers, located in New Jersey and around the world, were used by the co-conspirators to store information critical to the hacking schemes and subsequently to launch the hacking attacks,” prosecutors said.

”The scheme is believed to constitute the largest hacking and identity theft case ever prosecuted by the U.S. Department of Justice,” the statement said.

Son of Boog said...


ATLANTA -- Several thousand people turned out in Centennial Park on Saturday to demonstrate opposition to President Barack Obama's effort to overhaul the health-care system.

Protesters carried signs saying, "Obamacare Makes Me Sick!" or "Socialized Medicine Hotline: 1-800-YOU-DEAD."

Archbishop Zweibel said...


The Child Victims Act, a bill that would have loosened restrictions on lawsuits involving the sexual abuse of children, has been withdrawn from consideration in the New York State Assembly. In previous years (2006, 2007, 2008) it passed in the Assembly by wide margins but was blocked by the Republican-controlled State Senate. This year though, the Republicans lost control of the Senate and, faced with the real possibility that the bill could pass there, two dozen non-chordate Democratic Assemblymen who had formerly backed it, withdrew their support. The bill, sponsored by Margaret M. Markey (D, Queens), was then yanked from the calendar by the Assembly leadership.

Assemblyman Charles D. Levine, a Long Island Democrat whose district includes mainly Italian-American and Hispanic voters, said, "When it was never going to fly anyway, there was a tendency for many of us who are concerned about victims’ rights to symbolically support legislation like this." Faced with pressure from a letter-writing campaign initiated by the local Catholic Church hierarchy, he withdrew that support.

Support in the Senate has also wavered after two democrats defected to the Republican party. This caused Assemblyman Peter J. Abbate Jr (D, Brooklyn), once a co-sponsor of the bill, to say, “If it’s going to be a one-house bill anyway, why make people take the heat?”

The "heat" was turned up in large part, by pressure from the Catholic Church, a relentless campaigner against this legislation. “We believe this bill is designed to bankrupt the Catholic Church,” said Dennis Poust, spokesman for the New York State Catholic Conference, a group representing the bishops of the state’s eight dioceses. Cardinals and bishops have visited Albany on several occasions to lobby against it and a statewide network of Catholic parishioners have bombarded law-makers with letters and emails. Allied with the Church in the campaign against the Child Victim Act, are small, disparate groups including leaders of Hasidic and Sephardic Jewish institutions in Brooklyn who also fear costly child sex-abuse lawsuits.

Bim Bam identity said...


Millions are jobless. Thousands of homeowners face foreclosure. The average hard-working stiff can hardly make ends meet.

And New York state is giving away $200 to every needy child between 3 and 17 years of age — no strings attached — to buy back-to-school supplies.

Only families receiving food stamps or welfare are eligible, so don’t start dashing to the nearest ATM for a handout.

The public reaction to the giveaway runs the gamut from shock and disbelief to outrage and demand for even more.

“This is nuts,” said state Sen. George D. Maziarz, R-Newfane, noting the program doesn’t even require those kids to be in school. In a word, a 15-year-old dropout is still eligible for the money ostensibly earmarked for school supplies.

At a glance, there’s no restrictions on how that money can be spent. An adult shopping for a 3-year-old could easily buy a few cases of beer and a half-dozen cartons of cigarettes instead of notebooks and pencils.

A downstate woman, standing in line with 300 other people at the bank and clutching her electronic benefit card, shouted out, “It’s free money! Thank God for Obama. He’s looking out for us.”

Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos said the plan is ripe for fraud and abuse. “This is a totally irresponsible use of federal stimulus money,” he added.

The windfall was made available by billionaire philanthropist George Soros, who gave $35 million toward the program, with $140 million in federal stimulus money channeled through the state government.


Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks said the state school supply grants handed out to New York State food stamp and welfare recipients are not being used as intended by many families. She said the program has “widespread, rampant abuse.”

“There were better ways--You don't have to support families to buy school supplies by giving them cash,” she said.

Brooks said the county has been overwhelmed by reports, some of them from store owners, of people using the money to buy TVs and other luxury items.

“We actually received a telephone call from WalMart on Hudson Avenue suggesting that there was welfare fraud, and indicating they were going to call the FBI because people were going in and buying X-boxes, Wii systems, flat-screen television sets,” said Kelly reed, the county’s commissioner of social services. “Wegmans has indicated people are buying tickets to Darien Lake.”

Anonymous said...

The Gemarrah in Shabbos daf 139 says very explicitly: ‎

If you see many afflictions coming on the generation, check the judges - every punishment ‎that comes to the world is on account of judges of Yisrael.‎

‎Hashem will not rest His Shechinah on Yisrael until evil judges and enforcers cease. This is ‎because evil Rabbis who are taking the role as judges in a Bais Din, and render corrupt ‎rulings, are causing innocent people to be shamed in public, suffer great financial loss, and ‎mar their reputations. ‎

Torah warns us, “UBIARTA HORA MIKIRBECHO”. We must remove the evil amongst us , ‎lest we be held accountable for their sins as Chazal state that those who stand idly by and ‎don’t protest will be swallowed in with the sinners. Just as what transpired in the story of ‎Kamtza and bar-Kamtza, our sages tell us that the humiliation of a “lowly Jew” coupled with ‎the utter silence of the Rabbonim present who did not protest this public humiliation of ‎their fellow Jew caused the Bais Hamikdash to be destroyed.‎

It is incumbent upon ALL OF US, (not just UOJ) to demand the resignation or termination ‎of any Rav who strengthens the hands of a criminal, and any Dayan who perverts justice. ‎The Jewish community’s head is literally on the line. Any form of corruption, bullying, or ‎criminal behaviors by a Rabbinic leader must be met with the strongest opposition. A ‎position of Rav, Rosh Kollel, or Dayan must make the bearer of that title tremble in fear and ‎awe of his responsibility. It should not Chas V’Shalom be used as a bully pulpit to sew fear ‎and dissention in our community by backing criminal activities.‎

Hakadosh Baruch Hu should protect all who stand up for the Torah being disgraced at the ‎hands of the self-anointed leaders of His Torah. ‎

Any resemblance? said...

Mordechai or Marvin Berkowitz of Chicago is said to be the brother of NIRC rosh yeshiva R' Tzvi Berkowitz.


This is the mugshot of the fraudster arrested in Israel.


Here is a picture of R' Tzvi.


Rabbi Tzvi Berkowitz is a leading Talmudist at Ner Israel Rabbinical College and teaches the highest shiur (class), numbering over one hundred students.

Born in San Francisco to Holocaust survivors of Gerrer descent, at a young age he went to Ner Israel Yeshiva and demonstrated from the beginning his trademark diligence and brilliance, causing his ascent to the faculty of the institution. He is married to Ettil, the daughter of the world-renowned Rabbi Shmuel Kamenetsky (also a Ner Yisroel alumnus), and has fourteen children.

Aside from his immense Torah knowledge, he is known for being very precise and deliberate with his words and advice.

Berkowitz said...


Marvin Berkowitz obtained the details of US federal prisoners and impersonated them in letters he sent to American financial authorities. The letters contained fictitious tax return claims.

He pocketed "at least $12 million in this way," said police representative Supt. Ohad Ganis on Monday, during a remand hearing held at the Tel Aviv Magistrate's Court.

"The suspect lived in the shadows and went underground since arriving in Israel at the start of 2003. He expressed surprise that we got to him," Ganis said. The National Fraud Unit launched the investigation after being contacted by the US Department of the Treasury, he added.

Israel has not received a request from the US to extradite Berkowitz, and he can be indicted and tried in Israel for crimes committed on Israeli territory, Ganis said.

Berkowitz maintained a stony expression during the proceedings, though he occasionally glanced around the courtroom with a look of astonishment.

Berkowitz turned to one young American-Israeli real estate agent and hired him to locate apartments to buy, renovate and resell.

The agent, who cannot be named, was also arrested on Wednesday, though his lawyer, Menashe Salomon, argued that his client had no idea of the illegal source of Berkowitz's cash.

Judge Daniel Bari examined a secret report submitted by police containing the case material, and concluded "there is a basis" to suspect Berkowitz of "fraudulent receipt of goods, forgery, use of forged documents and money-laundering offences." Bari rejected the police's request to keep Berkowitz in custody for 15 days, extending his custody by a week instead.

Chaotic scenes erupted in the courtroom at the start of the hearing, when police objected to an attempt by an attorney, Larry Dub, to represent Berkowitz. Police said Dub had represented Berkowitz in a number of property sales in the past, and that "he might be questioned in the investigation later."

A second lawyer, Reuven Berkovitcz, was appointed instead as the suspect's legal counsel. Following the session, Dub told The Jerusalem Post, "This is part of a witch-hunt against the Jewish community being waged by American law enforcement, at the behest of the Obama administration."

He added, "The Jewish community is being persecuted, and this is one of many episodes. It's just another example of them making a big shtick over nothing. Where was the US government between 2003 and 2009? You would think they would have requested an extradition during that time."

The suspect's attorney, Berkovitcz, said, "We have not yet formulated a line of defense."

He admitted he was not well acquainted with the charges against his client, but added that he doubted the strength of the police's case.

A kippa-clad American-Israeli suspect, named as Ephraim Franklin Novak, was released to house arrest. Novak's attorney, Adowa Weizman, said her client suffered from health problems.

Skver said...


The day after a news article on the owner’s intent to build a yeshiva on that site, a new Web forum, titled StopNewSquare2.com, was launched. The mission statement of the forum read, “This forum is dedicated to the public effort to STOP ‘New Square 2’ from coming into Haverstraw, Stony Point and other towns.”

Shmarya groupie said...


Hillel Athias-Robles

The Guardian, Saturday 15 August 2009

Last week the American Psychological Association adopted a resolution stating that mental health professionals should avoid telling clients that they can change their sexual orientation through therapy. It recognised that many of the clients wanting such a change were those whose religious beliefs conflicted with their sexual orientation. Among its suggestions, it proposed that therapists discuss with their religious gay and lesbian clients the possibility of joining gay-friendly congregations.

Reading this evoked memories of my journey from religious repression to religious liberation, from ultra-Orthodox Judaism, which condemns homosexuality, to its Liberal counterpart, which celebrates it.

As a young teen, I began practising – along with my family – ultra-Orthodox Judaism, which was teeming with laws. Cardinal among the prohibitions was one from Leviticus 18:22: "Thou shalt not lie with a man as with a woman, it is an abomination." This made my life untenable. As much as I tried to abide by every commandment, my efforts were insufficient. I knew that I was gay and that made me an abomination.

At 17 I moved to Jerusalem to study in a yeshiva, a seminary devoted to the study of the Torah. I naively hoped that by cloistering myself with sacred texts I would be miraculously purged of my deviation. Reality crushed my buoyancy – my attraction towards men intensified.

Hillel Athias-Robles is assistant rabbi of the Northwood & Pinner Liberal Synagogue

Anonymous said...

by Lori Silberman Brauner
NJJN Staff Writer
August 14, 2009

The Deal Yeshiva may be the latest casualty of the scandal plaguing the Syrian-Jewish community of Monmouth County.

It appears that the yeshiva, which operates a boys’ school in Ocean and a girls’ school in West Long Branch, is shutting its doors — at least in its present incarnation.

“The Deal Yeshiva high school has been closed,” said Louis Zimmerman, a physical education teacher at the school who said he is now out of a job there.

In the meantime, the State Department of Labor has launched an investigation as to whether the yeshiva is behind on paying its teachers.

“The investigation is ongoing at this point,” said Labor Department spokesperson Marcela Ospina Maziarz. “We did receive claims for unpaid wages.”

Leib Tropper Fraud Alert! said...


The bum is making inroads now in the former Soviet Union and Germany where he won't face much opposition.

Larry Gordon of the 5 Towns Jewish Times is promoting Tropper like he promotes any fraud that brings in advertising revenue, like Rubashkin.

Agudah spinmeister Yonason Rosenbloom is now joining Tropper's seminars as a speaker.

HAFTR said...


NEW YORK – A court case that pits a New York religious court against a civil court also has three Orthodox groups and a Hebrew Academy squabbling over the right of the civil court to intervene in a Beit Din decision.

On Wednesday the Orthodox Union, Agudath Israel of America and Torah U'Mesorah filed a brief against a civil court complaining that it interfered in a religious court decision.

Meanwhile, the Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns and Rockaway (HAFTR), which benefitted from the civil court's intervention, has lauded the overturning of the Beit Din's ruling.

An "amici curiae" brief filed by the three Orthodox groups opposes a ruling by the civil court that overturned a New York Beit Din decision in a dispute between HAFTR and a former teacher.

The groups argued that the civil court decision set a dangerous precedent of interference in religious matters.

However, an attorney for HAFTR has argued that it was the religious court's decision that set a "dangerous and chilling precedent" that could impact private employers in employment matters.

The case hinges on a dispute between a teacher, Rabbi Neil Brisman, who lost his job, and HAFTR, his former employer.

In 2006, the school decided not to renew Brisman's contract due to differences in matters of religious philosophy. Brisman demanded to be reinstated, with back pay. An arbitration agreement signed by Brisman and the school stipulated that the matter be determined by a local Beit Din.

The religious court ruled in favor of Brisman, who brought the decision to a civil court to be affirmed. But a civil judge, Judge Bruce Balter, ruled the Beit Din's decision was "irrational." The case is now before a New York Appellate Court.

"The Orthodox Union believes the lower court's ruling in this case undermines the long-established and appropriate relationship between secular and ecclesiastical courts," said Nathan Diament, public policy director of the OU.

"Without the assurance of non-interference by secular courts and the reliable, religiously neutral enforcement of arbitration proceedings, such religious liberty and autonomy is undermined." Lawyers for Brisman and the Hebrew Academy did not immediately comment on the latest development in the case. But earlier this year, Brisman's attorney, Marvin Neiman, told New York'sJewish Week that he only went to the state court to affirm the decision because New York arbitration law demands confirmation within a year for it to be considered valid. Regarding the school's resistance to the Beit Din's decision, he said, "We were shocked they even opposed" the request for affirmation.

Wednesday's brief, without taking sides in the matter, questions the constitutional right of the court to interfere. The brief argues that the judge ignored the arbitration agreement, which stipulated the matter would be settled in a religious court.

Also, according to the document, the ruling represents a "serious threat to the religious autonomy of the Beit Din, a vital and central religious institution in the Orthodox Jewish community." The brief's authors added, "The ruling creates a dangerous precedent that could lead to unconstitutional interference by the civil courts in religious matters."

A lawyer for Hebrew Academy was not immediately available for comment on Thursday. But in previous court papers, attorney Brian Sher supported the civil court's intervention.

"Beit Din awards, just like awards rendered by other arbitration bodies, are within the scope of this court's power to review," Sher said.

Why is Bais Yaakov of Boro Park going broke? said...


As Jewish day schools prepare to open their doors for the 2009–10 school year, there is only one thing beyond the well-being of their students that is on the minds of those in charge: the economy.

The recession “has been devastating,” said Marc Kramer, executive director of RAVSAK: The Jewish Community Day School Network, which has 120 members. “This is the ‘perfect storm’ for day schools: Enrollment is down, requests for financial aid are up, attrition is up, new applications are down, donor dollars are down and the costs associated with health care are up. I know one should never say, ‘Things couldn’t get worse,’ but it is starting to feel that way.”

On top of it, the two Hebrew-language charter schools, one in Florida and the other in Brooklyn, are attracting students who have been enrolled in day schools.

Nearly all Jewish day schools are making significant cuts: salary freezes, layoffs and reductions of staff hours, along with limiting services to students, experts say. And every school is trying to meet reduced budgets without cutting teachers or academic programs.

In the past year, at least a half-dozen Jewish day schools have shut down because of the economy, Kramer said. The Solomon Schechter Day School of Palm Beach County became the latest casualty, closing suddenly in July because a donor could not fulfill his $200,000 pledge.

In addition to the loss of contributions — critical because even in flush times, tuition does not cover the cost of running a school — enrollment is taking a dive, though it’s uncertain how deep. There was already a slight dip in non-Orthodox day school enrollment between 2003 and 2008, according to Marvin Schick, a senior consultant for the Avi Chai Foundation.

Even as schools struggle to pay salaries and the bills, tuition appears to be rising. Day school tuition in the United States ranges from a low of about $7,000 to a high of $33,900 for Manhattan’s Abraham Joshua Heschel High School. [The figures exclude tuition for Haredi yeshivas, which are considerably cheaper.]

Say it aint so, Rav Yosef Blau said...

I can understand davening for people, even poshim, but why at a venue where homosexuals are pushing for acceptance of their abhorrent agenda?


YCT and YU ... last night (8/10), the senior administrations of these two schools came out with dozens of others to the Manhattan JCC to remember those who were killed, pray for the injured, and recognize the every day pain, suffering, and fear that plagues the queer Jewish world.

Rabbi Yosef Blau, the Mashgiach Ruchani of Yeshiva University, Rabbi Avi Weiss, President of YCT, and Rabbi Dov Linzer, YCT’s Dean and Rosh Yeshiva each spoke at the event. Rabbi Blau spoke in direct, clear words to the evilness of hatred and murder, and to need for all of us to act differently to our neighbors. Rabbi Weiss lead the gathered in Rabbi Nachman’s song, reminding us that though the way is narrow and dangerous - we must never be afraid. Rabbi Linzer lead the group in a unique prayer that he composed for the occasion.

In addition to the Rabbinic leadership, many leaders of the homodox community spoke about their ongoing activities, and we got an update regarding LGBT issues and organizations in Israel.

The unity, and the size of the event was inspiring, as well as the brave personal stories of the many who are struggling to be proud of who they are in all ways.


The YCT tefillah for gays is ridiculous.

Wondering said...

I would like people to help me strengthen my emunah in Torah as given at Har Sinai. If anyone has any suggestions, please let me know.

I am currently reading "Beyond a Reasonable Doubt", and "Permission to Receive". If anyone has any other ideas, it would be very helpful.


Anonymous said...

The Jerusalem Post on HAFTR does not tell you two things: Why the judge originally ruled the beis din's decision is irrational, and that Judge Balter is himself Orthodox.

When you read the decision you'll see the beis din was indeed irrational – and that Rabbi Mordechai Willig has a checkered past regarding proper beis din procedure:

1. The case involves a day school, Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns & Rockaway, that terminated a teacher because the teacher's religious outlook did not match the school's. (Presumably, the teacher was more right wing in his religious observance, perhaps Charedi. The school is Modern Orthodox and trends to the left.)

2. The beis din, the Beit Din of America – is the official beis din of the RCA.

3. The rabbis on the beis din are leading Modern Orthodox rabbis: Mordechai Willig, Ronald Warburg and Steven Pruzansky. (Pruzansky is also an attorney.)

4. One of those rabbis, Mordechai Willig, who is a rosh yeshiva at YU, previously abused his authority to protect now-convicted child sexual and physical abuser Rabbi Baruch Lanner.

In a decision first published in the NY Law Journal, the Kings County Supreme court concluded:

After a careful review of the complete record, including the entire court file, the Court determines that the Beth Din Award is irrational, clearly exceeds the arbitrators' power and is violative of public policy.

Here is the court's reasoning underlying that decision:

… It is clear that the Beth Din award dated July 10, 2007 and modified on August 28, 2007, must be vacated on several grounds. The Beth Din award was totally irrational; the Beth Din exceeded a specifically enumerated limitation on its authority; and the award is violative of a strong public policy.

The Beth Din awarded Petitioner $50,000 in back pay for the 2006-2007 calendar year. The Beth Din then reinstated Petitioner to a tenured position for a set salary of $100,000. While Respondent does not dispute that Petitioner was, at one time, a tenured teacher, the Petitioner's employment was governed by the teacher's contract which expired at the end of the 2005-2006 academic year. Once the contract terminated, all of the terms and provisions contained in the Contract, including the "tenure" provisions, terminated as well. The Beth Din's determination rendered essentially forces Respondent, an "at will" private employer, to employ Petitioner, who, in the school's discretion, has a clear difference in Hashkafah, religious philosophy, from Respondent's administration, for an indefinite tenure. Furthermore, the salary set forth by the Beth Din of $100,000 is arbitrary, unfounded and irrational, as the base salary, as set forth by the expired employment contract, was $54,000. As such, this award is burdensome, unrealistic and wholly irrational.

Secondly, by retaining indefinite jurisdiction, the Beth Din exceeded a specifically enumerated limitation on its authority, as set forth by the parties in their own agreement to arbitrate.

Lastly, the award is violative of public policy. The Beth Din's ruling sets a precedent that will impact and limit the ability of private schools to make and enforce routine employment decisions, as the award compels Respondent to reinstate an employee it does not wish to employ. It is noted by the Court, that a severance package, which amounted to Chodesh L'Shanah was offered by the Respondent upon termination of the Petitioner, which was rejected. Furthermore, the difficulty set forth by the determination of the salary at an amount exceedingly greater than Petitioner's co-workers is counterproductive to a harmonious and productive work environment.

As there has been no allegation that the arbitrators award was the result of corruption, fraud or misconduct nor that the arbitrator was partial to either side. As such, the Court need not address such issues.

Chevra Chazerim - Albany division said...


Assemblyman Bob Reilly, 69, a Democrat from Clifton Park, near Albany, has sponsored legislation that would take away the pensions of public officials convicted of crimes related to their office.

“If you as a public servant don’t fulfill your pledge,” Mr. Reilly said, you “don’t deserve your pension.” The bill’s fate? “I can’t get it through committee.”

Archie Bunker said...

This loser is friendly with Moishe Rubashkin.


A state senator and former NYPD cop has secured a controversial $10,000 grant for a research center run by ex-convicts who will study whether proposed state laws are racist.

The award was financed as a "member item" request of Sen. Eric Adams (D-Brooklyn), a former police captain who was a founder of 100 Blacks in Law Enforcement Who Care.

It will be used by the Center for NuLeadership on Urban Solutions, which is a part of CUNY's Medgar Evers College. It's the first academic research center in the US developed and run by ex-convicts-turned-scholars seeking to influence to public policy, according to the school's Web site.

"A racial-impact study is a new concept. We're going to be looking at legislation that has the potential to have negative impact on racial minorities," said Divine Pryor, deputy executive director of the group.

Pryor, 48, was released in 1992 after serving 10 years for robbery and burglary.

Marty Golden (R-Brooklyn) blasted the study as a "waste of taxpayer dollars" that attempts to divide the state by race and ethnicity.

"This is the United States of America. Whatever happened to 'This is one New York'? This is going in a bad direction," said Golden, who is also an ex-cop.

Archie Bunker said...

"Shmarya groupie" can jump in the lake about banks catering to Blacks. They don't even trust banks enough to open an account so why should banks open branches in Black neighborhoods?


August 18, 2009

City’s Poor Still Distrust Banks


Skverrer Liars and Ganuvim said...


A Hasidic Skver-sect based in the Rockland County Village of New Square owns the properties. Deeds recently were transferred from Ulster Mountain LLC and Ulster River LLC to the Congregation Ahavas Chaverim Gemilas Chesed, which has a Monsey address.
Town and county officials say the groups are the same but the property was transferred to a congregation to seek a tax exemption. The congregation this winter filed for a 100 percent tax exemption as a religious group, a request that was rejected by the Town of Mamakating assessor and board of assessment review.
The owners almost lost their property for failing to pay property taxes in 2007 and 2008 and are now on a tax installment plan with the county.

County Treasurer Ira Cohen estimates the group also owes more than $100,000 in hotel occupancy taxes for two years. If this bill isn't soon resolved, the county could seize the property and begin selling off the assets, Cohen said.

Summitville fire Chief Tim Koestler, a plumbing and heating contractor, says conditions are so unsafe that the camp operator, Congregation Bais Trana, should have been evacuated July 7. On that day, he and town officials toured the buildings after the camp opened without a permit. All the girls were gathered in the indoor tennis courts and wore dust masks because of mold.

"You could literally take your hand and scrape the mold off the walls in the basement," he said.

Anonymous said...

"Rabbi Mordechai Willig has a checkered past regarding proper beis din procedure..."

"4. One of those rabbis, Mordechai Willig, who is a rosh yeshiva at YU, previously abused his authority to protect now-convicted child sexual and physical abuser Rabbi Baruch Lanner."

Poorly written, very misleading words. When he was on the Lanner beis din, he made the wrong decision, as did the two other rabbis. All of them have publicly acknowledged their serious error.

Crazy Lubabs and their conspiracy theories said...


Two computer disks taken from the kosher meat plant contain more than 6,800 pages of FBI reports, bank loan documents, and papers from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

All allegedly pertain to the criminal case against Rubashkin.

Rubashkin, a former executive at Agriprocessors, "believes that these files were 'planted' or 'seeded' by present and/or former Agriprocessors employees," defense lawyers Guy Cook and F. Montgomery Brown wrote in court papers.

Cook said his legal team has a theory about who planted the disks, but he declined to elaborate.

The new details were disclosed in a written request to postpone Rubashkin's Sept. 15 trial to allow defense lawyers more time to prepare.


2. Planted
I suspect that Rabbi Menachem Genack executive director from the OU also knows about it. For years they wanted the current people from Canada to take over the plant, in order to rub out Lubavitch. They thought that the entire Lubavitch organization runs on the Rubashkins tzedakah. The truth will come out.

Politically incorrect said...


Shmarya was all over Alle-Meal Mart for labor law violations but doesn't say a word about Starbucks which is owned by a secular Jew who grew up in Brooklyn.

Jeffrey Goldberg writing in The Atlantic said...


The Morality Crisis in Orthodox Judaism

Sauce to compliment Rubashkin hamburgers said...


A 40-year-old woman has been found dead in a machine at a Southern California food processing plant that is a major supplier for McDonald's restaurants.

Los Angeles County sheriff's detectives say the woman's body was found early Tuesday at Golden State Foods in the City of Industry, an east Los Angeles suburb. Investigators believe her death was accidental.

No other details were given about her death or about the woman except that she was an employee.

The Irvine-based company has distribution centers across the nation. Its Web site says the company supplies McDonald's and developed the sauce for the restaurant's Big Mac in the 1960s.

Pinny Lipschutz, you Meshugenna! said...


How dare you print this Lubab conspiracy theory on the front page of your paper this week! Your enabling of Rubashkin is causing people to eat meat that is mistomma treif and which is osser according to Rav Schach & heintigger poskim because of Meshechist shechiteh!

The article is full of lies.


You cannot compare the archaic law in the AIPAC case to the Packer & Stockyards Act because the Act was updated in 1976 to protect ranchers from ganovim like Rubashkin.

And while there are anti-Semites in the FBI who targeted AIPAC, Rubashkin brought the problems on himself by feifing on Federal inspectors. It was Jewish members of Congress who got complaints from Jewish constituents about hazardous food and abusive behavior who precipitated the raid with an angry letter to the USDA.

Get your head out of the sand you dray kop!

Boog gets results said...

NY Post

Politically active billionaire Thomas Golisano has Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver in his sights.

The businessman and owner of the NHL’s Buffalo Sabres, who played chief carnival barker in the circus-like Senate coup, says he will next commit his cash to overthrowing the Manhattan Democrat who has controlled the Assembly for 16 years.

Golisano ripped Silver in a half-hour infomercial on a Buffalo TV station Saturday night.

“Quite candidly, even if Sheldon has done a decent job, 16 years is far too long in a democracy,” said Golisano, who is worth about $1.3 billion and who spent more than $90 million on three failed runs for governor.

“We need some new leadership there, and we’re going to try and encourage it there.”

A spokeswoman for Silver declined to comment.

Golisano changed his legal address to Naples, Fla., in May to protest a massive income-tax hike pushed through by Gov. Paterson and the Democrat-controlled Legislature.

That didn’t stop him from conspiring with Republicans and two rogue Democrats in a bid to get control of the state Senate.

Anonymous said...

8 More Things a Burglar Won't Tell You

1. Of course I look familiar. I was here just last week cleaning your carpets, painting your shutters, or delivering your new refrigerator.

2. Hey, thanks for letting me use the bathroom when I was working in your yard last week. While I was in there, I unlatched the back window to make my return a little easier.

3. Love those flowers. That tells me you have taste … and taste means there are nice things inside. Those yard toys your kids leave out always make me wonder what type of gaming system they have. 4. Yes, I really do look for newspapers piled up on the driveway. And I might leave a pizza flyer in your front door to see how long it takes you to remove it.

5. If it snows while you’re out of town, get a neighbor to create car and foot tracks into the house. Virgin drifts in the driveway are a dead giveaway.

6. If decorative glass is part of your front entrance, don’t let your alarm company install the control pad where I can see if it’s set. That makes it too easy.

7. A good security company alarms the window over the sink. And the windows on the second floor, which often access the master bedroom—and your jewelry. It’s not a bad idea to put motion detectors up there too.

8. It’s raining, you’re fumbling with your umbrella, and you forget to lock your door—understandable. But understand this: I don’t take a day off because of bad weather.

9. I always knock first. If you answer, I’ll ask for directions somewhere or offer to clean your gutters. (Don’t take me up on it.)

10. Do you really think I won’t look in your sock drawer? I always check dresser drawers, the bedside table, and the medicine cabinet.

11. Here’s a helpful hint: I almost never go into kids’ rooms.

12. You’re right: I won’t have enough time to break into that safe where you keep your valuables. But if it’s not bolted down, I’ll take it with me.

13. A loud TV or radio can be a better deterrent than the best alarm system. If you’re reluctant to leave your TV on while you’re out of town, you can buy a $35 device that works on a timer and simulates the flickering glow of a real television. (Find it at faketv.com.)

Sources: Convicted burglars in North Carolina, Oregon, California, and Kentucky; security consultant Chris McGoey, who runs crimedoctor.com; and Richard T. Wright, a criminology professor at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, who interviewed 105 burglars for his book Burglars on the Job.

60659 said...

Update from the Dayanim:

It is PRAISWORTHY to report to police and press charges, when a person is a danger and menace to society. These issues Bais Din has no enforcement power nowadays, and the laws of Mesirah cannot be used as a tool to harass a victim. All pursuers and those who egg them on should receive the punishments they deserve for their behaviors. They have destroyed lives, and ruined the bracha we had in the city previously.

Anonymous said...

UOJ guessed it right that this old meshumad had a brain tumor.


Robert D. Novak, the pugnacious political columnist and cable television fixture whose scoops reached across five decades and whose nickname, “the prince of darkness,” was invoked with renewed fervor in 2003 when, acting on a tip, he revealed the name of a C.I.A. officer, setting the stage for a criminal investigation, died Tuesday at his home in Washington. He was 78.

The cause was a malignant brain tumor, according to The Chicago Sun-Times, the home paper for Mr. Novak’s columns. It was the latest of a number of cancers and maladies, including spinal meningitis and broken bones, that Mr. Novak had suffered in recent years.

Mr. Novak relished making outrageous comments. He once complained that his Thanksgiving dinner had been ruined by seeing so many homeless people on television. Always combative, he left CNN in 2005 after storming off the set in a row with James Carville, the Democratic strategist and commentator. He later contributed to Fox News.

As for the “prince of darkness” moniker, which John J. Lindsay, a Newsweek reporter, had bestowed, Mr. Novak said he was amused by it.

In July 2008, he was fined $50 for striking a homeless pedestrian in Washington with his black Corvette. He said he did not know that the accident had happened until a witness on a bicycle told the police. The witness said the victim, who was not seriously hurt, had been splayed across Mr. Novak’s windshield.

Mr. Novak grew up Jewish and was in a Jewish fraternity in college, but, like Mr. Evans, he was critical of Israel. He prompted a firestorm when he said the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington in 2001 had been provoked in part by the United States’ closeness to Israel.

After largely ignoring religion and dabbling in Unitarianism, Mr. Novak, in 1998, at age 67, converted to Roman Catholicism.

steve said...


Senator Eric Adams happens to be one of the staunchest supporters of the Child Victims Act. We need more people like him in the Senate and Assembly to pass this legislation. There is no way that we are going to surrender to the Catholic Church and to their allies, Niederman and Zwiebel. This axis of evil will be defeated once and for all. We need to work with our allies in Albany to put the child molesters and their enablers out of business.

Yonason Rosenbloom said...


Rabbi Zev Leff likes telling a story of the Telshe Rosh Yeshiva, Rabbi Chaim Mordechai (Mottel) Katz. A non-religious Jew once asked him, “Rabbi, how do you explain all these religious Jews who lie, steal, and cheat on their income taxes.”

Reb Mottel replied, “I have the same question about all those religious Jews who eat on Yom Kippur, drive on Shabbos, and don’t keep kosher.” The man looked perplexed. “Those aren’t religious,” he said. “Well, neither are those you mentioned,” Reb Mottel replied.

An Orthodox prison chaplain relates how he once brought a prisoner a set of the Four Species for Sukkos. The prisoner, however, rejected the esrog, telling the chaplain, “I’m makpid (strict) on a pitom.” The chaplain could not resist asking, “About a pitom you are strict, and about defrauding widows you are lenient?” But obviously the prisoner did feel some connection to Hashem. Otherwise, why would he have cared about the pitom either?

If we carried Rabbi Katz’s answer to its logical conclusion, where would we draw the line? Most of us are not candidates for federal penitentiary. But how many would feel comfortable having Rabbi Shimon Schwab, zt”l, examine our books, if he were still alive? A rabbi once called Rabbi Schwab and began his question, “A frum Jew who runs a cash business . . .” He had gotten no further when Rabbi Schwab shouted, “WHAT!”

Thinking that Rabbi Schwab was hard of hearing, the rabbi began again, “A frum Jew who runs a cash business . . .” Again, Rabbi Schwab shouted, “WHAT!” After the third try, Rabbi Schwab explained that running a cash business – i.e.., evading taxes – cannot be reconciled with being a frum Jew.

Even if we could pass the Rabbi Schwab bookkeeping test, how many of us can say that we have never lowered the respect for Torah Jews by our public behavior – e.g., the way we drive, reacting angrily when irritated by a sales clerk? I know I couldn’t pass that test.

NO DOUBT many Torah Jews could pass the Rabbi Schwab bookkeeping test. They just don’t happen to be the ones who receive any media attention. Someone raised in the Breuer’s kehillah of Washington Heights once told me that he had never ever experienced the slightest temptation to cheat on his income taxes.

Anonymous said...

" Poorly written, very misleading words."

That's no surprise as that attack on Rabbi Willig was written by Shmarya and lifted from Failed Messiah.

Shmarya will never never let anyone make up for a mistake if he is orthodox.

Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz said...


Shmarya hasn't attacked me yet but he will when he finds out I'm an Aish Hatorah supporter.

Vos zogt UOJ? said...


Any truth to these allegations in Los Angeles calling Fishel Cohen a rapist that RCC's Rabbi Gradon is covering up for him?

UOJ said...

I can not substantiate the allegations of rape against Cohen.

Leib Tropper said...

Tom Kaplan must know this putz-thief from the Y


Two years after he was sacked in disgrace from the helm of the 92nd Street Y, former executive director Sol Adler has hanged himself in his Brooklyn home, police said Saturday.
The body of Adler, 60, was found by his wife in his oceanfront Sea Gate home shortly before 11 a.m. Friday, authorities said.
Adler had been fired from his $430,000-a-year post at the Y in 2012, after a two-decade career as director.
Under his tenure, the Y had raised more than $80 million and doubled its number of programs, growing into one of the country’s premier cultural institutions.
But two years ago, the ­organization became mired in a corruption scandal.
An anonymous letter had revealed that the married Adler had been engaging in a long-term romantic relationship with Catherine Marto, his personal assistant.
The nonprofit released a statement at the time explaining that Adler had been ousted due to his ­“undisclosed long-term personal relationship” with Marto.
Meanwhile, Marto’s ex-convict son-in-law, the Y’s director of facilities, had been fired under suspicion of taking kickbacks from vendors.
Several other employees were terminated “for ­engaging in and failing to report suspected inappropriate behavior,” as the Y’s board explained in a letter to staff.

Old Torah Vodaas said...

Any truth to this or just a phony rumor being spread in the Shavuos Yated?

Reporting on the petira of Mike Tress's almonoh, the Yated quotes both Agudah propagandist Yonosson Rosenbloom and Tress nephew R' Dovid Trenk from the hespid, quoting R' Shraga Feivel Mendlowitz ztl no less, az Moshiach vet kummen bizchus dem 'ohn a bard', Mike Tress.

UOJ said...

Moshiach vet kummen bizchus dem 'ohn a bard', Mike Tress...


Utter nonsense!

Full Fledged "Bungalow Putz" said...


Rapist Michael Weitz supposedly became a BT through Chabad when he was living in Brighton Beach. The Chabad shaliach to Kingsborough College, Efraim Zaltzman, came under a lot of fire for protecting him.

Look at his updated address information. He moved into a basement apt in Mill Basin but has several addresses in the Catskills. The Landfield Ave address is next to the year round Monticello shul where the rov is also a Chabadnik.

And what's with the Bloomingberg address? Did Sholom Lamm import him as part of the voting bloc hedge for Satmar?

Monsey said...


This goy from Monsey was jailed for child porn and works at Staples on Route 17 in NJ. Don't chain stores have policies against employing convicted criminals?

Barfman said...


Richard Zinaman of the Upper West Side, a dentist who molested his patients, is a 1968 graduate of YU's high school.

Ben Brafman couldn't convince his idiot client to take a guilty plea with no jail despite overwhelming evidence so he was sentenced to 3 to 6 years.


Little Big Man

One moment, he’s all preternatural self-confidence & braggadocio; the next, he’s insecure & hungry for acceptance & approval. Even people who feel warm toward Brafman find him hard to take at times. As former Assistant U.S. Attorney Walter Mack puts it, “He’s an egomaniac. Like the best defense lawyers, he has a very high opinion of himself.”

It wasn’t always that way. Brafman was the class clown, a lazy, directionless student who dozed through yeshiva classes. Aaron Brafman, Ben’s studious older brother, now a rabbi in Far Rockaway, says, “Our mother always worried: What’s Ben going to turn into? I was the goody-goody; he used to always be in my shadow.”

The two boys & their sisters, Malkie & Shevy, grew up in a house with impermeable sadness of a family shattered by the Holocaust. Their mother, Rose, who died in 1996, fled Czechoslovakia for New York in 1938 at 16, the only one in her family to get papers to leave; her parents & sister were killed in concentration camps. Their father Sol escaped Vienna with his parents after Kristallnacht in 1939. Shortly after marrying Rose, he was drafted into the U.S. Army.

After the war, the Brafmans settled in Williamsburg, then in Crown Heights, and finally in upscale Belle Harbor. Sol made a modest living as manager for a lingerie company. This was a strict religious Orthodox household with classic immigrant work-hard-my-child ethos. To this day, Brafman remains observant, leaving the office early on Fridays to try to get home before sundown. “I figure God will understand if I’m trying to save someone’s life & I’m home 5 minutes late,” he says. Brafman’s brother Aaron rolls his eyes at such liberties, saying dryly, “It doesn’t quite work that way.”

As a kid, Brafman wanted but couldn’t afford the finer things in life. Now “they roll out the red carpet at Ralph Lauren when Ben arrives,” jokes Avi Lebor, a mortgage banker & close friend. Brafman began working at age 10, helping set tables at a Rockaways hotel.

After Castellano was gunned down outside Sparks Steak House, a front-page New York Post photo of the mob leader’s wake prominently featured Brafman. This raised eyebrows among Brafman’s former colleagues in the D.A.’s office, who saw the visit as a sleazy way to attract new clients. “He was looking for mob business when he went to Castellano’s funeral,” grumps a prosecutor. “There are those who say, ‘Why are you showing respect for this man?’”

Gotti’s sidekick was Sammy “The Bull” Gravano - charged, ironically, with whacking Paul Castellano. Brafman was thrilled to represent Gravano

Lawyers who defend the Mafia are typically viewed by the rest of the legal profession as morally compromised. And it’s hard to reconcile the persona of Brafman the religious man with his chosen role as mouthpiece for the underworld. “Ben’s not working for the Mafia,” insists his brother Aaron. Brafman’s rabbi, Kenneth Hain, the leader of Congregation Beth Sholom, also defends him

Brafman wants it both ways - craving respectability and prominently displaying a painting of a thug, labeled Tough Guy, in his office - and doesn’t fully understand why the world doesn’t work that way.

The phone rings now, interrupting our dinner-table conversation. It’s Rabbi Hain, who wants to discuss the legal problems of a member of the congregation.

Ugliest molester award said...


Marvin Auerbach

Old Torah Vodaas said...

Was there a common denominator molester in the early days of the Malochim?

I say this not just because of the perverse clan that includes Nechemya Weberman & the Belskys.

The Blesofskys who are a known name in Lubavitch were also originally Malochim.

Could all of these creeps been molested by someone in the Malochim when they were very young?


Cantor Leibel Blesofsky, has been allegedly abusing young members in various communities. The allegations state as follows:

Mr Blesofsky been molesting young boys aged 13 to 16. Mr Blesofsky brings these kids to his home, shows them pornography, and serves them alcohol. Unfortunately, Leibel has gone all the way with multiple children in... our community.

After finding out that he had been exposed, Leibel left town, and is currently in Miami Beach, if you are a victim of his, or know someone that is, please come forward and help us put this monster away.

Anonymous said...

Any society or group and especially closed groups need to know that everyone in the group is held accountable for their words and actions. This is particularly important for those who are held as 'leaders' within these groups.

Women and children should NEVER be at the mercy of criminals of any kind. If crime is ignored, this weakens the group!

Anonymous said...

I am a Catholic living in Monsey, NY. I do not like to judge any particular group as a whole, but when you live here you see with your own eyes the complete and utter lack of following laws, scamming the system, tax fraud, buying off politicians, etc. Religious people have taken over the public school board, while not even sending their children to our schools, and come out in large amounts to vote down the school budget every year. Houses in residential areas are turned into temples and do not have to pay taxes. And when I go to the National Sex Offender Registry and plug in my address...about 90% of the names that pop up are Hasidic Jews. I'm sure the root of your religion is peaceful and wonderful, but hiding behind that religion while breaking so many laws and ethical behaviors is nothing short of disgusting. It has nothing to do with being antisemitic, as I have so many important people in my life who are Jewish, just not ultra religious like Hasidic and Orthodox, who follow the same religion, just not as radically. But as a citizen and tax payer in this community I have basically no say what goes on in my town because politicians are afraid to go up against this group and it is really sad. Not getting real jobs so they can pray all day and then going on welfare and having more kids than they could possibly support on their own is irresponsible and wedges this community apart.