Wednesday, July 25, 2012

On Legislating Morality

The UOJ Archives - May 26, 2008

"I am not a pessimist. To perceive evil where it exists is, in my opinion, a form of optimism!"

Roberto Rossellini

A well-intentioned rabbi calls a gathering, and emotionally lays out the pitfalls of the great technological advances of our time. Story after probably true story, of heartbreak and more devastation. So many families falling victim to the Internet, text messaging, cell phones...and that sly yetzer ha'ra.

I have no reason to doubt the veracity of those stories; but I wonder if the Internet has done any good; were any lives saved by cell phones and text messaging?

Is not Hatzalah run almost entirely by this latest work of Satan? How much Torah was learned through Hashem's creation of man, that was responsible for the genius of the Internet -- being able to be used for so much good. What about the automobile? I am informed that many European rabbonim labeled it "maaseh Satan" or the work of the devil - especially, because that notorious Jew-hater, Henry Ford was so instrumental in bringing it to market. Automobiles kill more people annually than all of the cancers combined!

How about the radio - today? There are Jewish hamlets that forbid it in any Jewish home! Oh, those newspapers - just another form of secular infiltration of the Jewish household.

So this rabbi has a solution; the wife should be the keeper of the computer password - preventing the husband and the kids from getting online unmonitored!

What I call genius!!!

Let's go back only a bit in time, when the parents took sole responsibilty for the moral education of their children. They would hopefully send their children to the appropriate schools that would mirror their family values. They would be responsible for the emotional well-being of their kids; not the least being who their childrens' friends were.

Enter Maria or Guadalupe!

Parents are busy socializing and remodeling their homes - just because they can! Kids are dressed in the latest fashions - for no good reason other than to outdo the Moskowitzs. It is the parents that need appropriate value lessons - their teachings, especially the "yeshiva boys", has not included ahavat Hashem through shmirat hamitzvos v'taavot. They were brought up with respect for the almighty dollar. Who are their children to learn from? Parents are off to Atlantic City and Las Vegas --- and brag about it at davening (not everything that happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas)..... "Kids - stay off the Internet, it could be bad for you."

And getting back to one of my favorite themes --- guests of honor at yeshiva, shul and Jewish organization functions.

An organization has recently honored a family of "vadei mamzerus!"

Bubby --- after the war "married" a man because she had not heard from her first husband for two years post the war. They had a child! Shortly after the child was born, hubby number one shows up. Beis din convened and ordered her to leave "husband number two", since she was an eishes ish and did not have two witnesses testify in beis din that hubby number one was in fact dead. Her second marriage was null and void!

She refused! She liked the second guy better and told hubby number one to get lost. Beis din ruled the child of that union - a mamzer...and pleaded with hubby number one, for the sake of the future children of this woman, to divorce his wife.

He ultimately divorced the woman, and the many subsequent children do not carry the stigma of mamzerus. But she did not have another "kiddushin", even though the halacha is clear; when she married hubby number two, the kiddushin was not tofes or chal, because she was married to the first guy, rendering her offspring pogem, - (spiritually defective - born out of wedlock ) - albeit not illegitimate or bastards. But the first child, although no fault of hers, is a mamzer(et), and was only permitted to marry someone from the same unfortunate stigmatized Jewish lineage. Sad, but the halacha is sometimes seemingly unfair. She did not; and as best they could, kept the secret of her spiritually defective Jewish lineage.

But the person honored at the Jewish organization dinner knew that he married a mamzeret. The organization and the rabbi at it's head knew, the entire community knew - AND NOBODY SAID BOO!

His kids are mamzerim - vadei mamzeirim - and if the money remains in the family - they probably will be honored at future Orthodox Jewish dinners as well.

Yes, cellphones and the Internet can be misused, but they are NOT the danger that mamzerus can cause to the sanctity of Klal Yisroel. In matter of fact, Kiddushin - holiness through appropriate marriage - k'das Moshe v'Yisroel, is the bedrock of Yiddishkeit. And now we're trading that very foundation of Klal Yisroel - for a few bucks, full tables, and journal ads.

Back to the Internet and cell phones. Rabbis --- you have lost all the moral authority once vested in you - nobody gives a damn what you have to say. The children (and few thinking adults) see through this facade --- what you're doing is creating additional very good reasons for the children to say to you - you're full of it, and we want nothing to do with your brand of hypocrisy!

Address the real issues - in an honest manner - or there will not be any Orthodox Jewish kids left to text message the announcements of your bogus asifas and exaggerated maaselach!


steve said...

Speaking of hypocrisy, how does the OU continue to give their (absent) "hashgacha" to Rubashkin? Rav Yudel Shain posted this letter from the OU dated May 29, 1955:

To Whom it May Concern:

Several decades ago the Agudath Harabonim issued an Issur (prohibition) on the so-called kosher departments of treife factories. According to the Issuur, if a factory of treife products has also a kosher department-even in separate quarters-at the factory or in proximity thereof, the products of the kosher department are also forbidden. In such a case supervision does not help.

We hereby inform the Jewish public that the said issue is in full force, and we urge our people to heed this prohibition in order to save themselves from the serious sin of treife. May all those who heed our warning be blessed.

Union of Orthodox Rabbis of U.S. and Canada

Now, this letter was written concerning honest people that are selling strictly kosher products. Yet, the rabbis of the past understood the temptation for even honest people to switch, or even to do so unwittingly. How much more so does this apply to Rubashkin products which are produced by an unscrupulous group of frauds. These people know no shame, whether it's in regards to worker abuse, animal abuse, health violations, safety violations or kashrus violations!! Yes, kashrus violations also, just ask the KAJ why they left. Just ask the 300 "mashgichim" that are about to be deported to Guatemala, who is in charge of shipping and labeling? Certainly not Weissmandel or Genack or Zeilingold of that shameless shill Lubinsky. They are the paid accomplices of the biggest kashrus scandal to rock the Jewish people. They continue to sell their collective souls in order to protect their exorbitant salaries, not caring how Jewish bodies and souls are affected by eating this crap. And the rest of the rabbis just remain silent. They privately will not eat these products, but they refuse to go on the record and tell their respective congregants to boycott Rubashkin. This after all these startling revelations, how these people cannot be trusted. What is kashrus about after all if not trust? Only one rabbi, from Washington, DC (except Rav Yudel of course who has been a lone voice in the forest for about a decade now)has dared to call for a boycott. Where is the indignation? What about our traditions? What about that OU letter from 1955, reiterating what was already established in the U.S. for kashrus standards by such giants as Rav Shraga Feivel Mendlowitz, Rav Aharon Kotler and Rav Moshe Feinstein? Can we sit quietly while we watch all that they worked for be made into a farce? Why? Because Rubashkin gives charity? Feh! Because Weissmandel needs his $250K per year, and his father was a gadol? Chometz Ben Yayin!! Is it because Lubinsky writes such nice articles in Kosher Today about Rubashkin and he needs the money for parnassa? Or is it because we have become fressers to the point where we don't care what we eat, as long as the price is right? It doesn't matter anymore because this whole powder keg is about to blow. Sholom Rubashkin is going to jail, and so is any other Rubashkin official. Weissmandel, Strasser, Zeilingold, Lubinsky, Genack and the whole OU hierarchy will be exposed and will be going down also. All of this is not a moment too soon!

Anonymous said...


Who is this person/family? We must know! What if my child (or any unknowing innocent Yid) winds up marrying these mamzerim? You MUST divulge the name. Please, for the sake of holiness, for the sake of purity, for the sake of EMES! What is his/their name?

Oorah style child care said...


LAKEWOOD — Township police were at the scene of a Swarthmore Avenue industrial park where several dead animals were discovered today, according to Sgt. Robert Smith of the Lakewood Township police.

"It's horrifying," said Lakewood Councilman Charles Cunliffe, who was at the scene about 3 p.m. He said Lakewood Township police and state ASPCA officials had spent three hours at the site and were working to clear away the carcasses from what he called "an illegal zoo operation."

"There's also a day care center here, so we've got rotten carcasses of dead animals next to a playground," Cunliffe said.

Lakewood Township Industrial Commission Chairman Jeff Golub, who was also at the scene this afternoon, said he had alerted authorities to the site after he heard farm animals stirring in the woods when he left his nearby office Friday night.

"I was just about to leave and I heard a horse whinny," he said. "The SPCA people
say this is one of the most horrifying scenes they've ever seen."

Avi L. Shafran said...

It figures UOJ would quote Roberto Rossellini, a film director. Being that he was Italian, his films were mistomme pornographic.

Rabbi Shlomo Aviner said...


Case of Rabbi Shlomo Aviner

(AKA: HaRav Shlomo Aviner, Rabbi Shlomo Chaim HaKohen Aviner, Shlomo Chaim Aviner)

Rosh Yeshiva - Ateret Cohanim Yeshiva - Old City of Jerusalem

Rabbi of Beit El, Israel

CALL TO ACTION: Stop Allowing Alleged Sex Offender, Rabbi Shlomo Aviner From Being A Spokes Person On Child Abuse.

May 23, 2008

Back in 2002, serious allegations were made against Rabbi Shlomo Aviner of sexually harassing women both verbally and physically. These behaviors are considered to fall under the catagory of "clergy sexual abuse". Like in many other cases, those who tried to speak out where shunned and made to look as if they were crazy.

Rabbi Shlomo Aviner continues to be the senior rabbi and a Rosh yeshiva (dean of a seminary) in Jerusalem, Israel. In the last few months Aviner has been publicly speaking out against child abuse as a PR campaign to correct his image. This needs to be stopped!

Due to the seriousness of the past allegation, Rabbi Aviner's actions should be scene as endangering the safety of adolescent girls and adult women, who might see him as a "safe person." The Awareness Center is demanding that Rabbi Aviner undergo a psychological evaluation conducted by a mental health professional approved by our organization prior to him becoming a spokes person on the issue of child abuse.

Please write letters to the editor of the following Israeli newspapers to ensure they are aware that their actions of quoting this alleged sex offender may lead to another woman being harmed.


Editor in Chief


click here to send letters to the editor

Jerusalem Post

Telephone 972-2-531-5666

David Horovitz, Editor-in-Chief - davidh@jpost.com

Amir Mizroch, News Editor - amirm@jpost.com




Rabbi Shlomo Aviner was born in 1943 in German Occupied Lyon, France. There he was active in Bnei Akiva youth movement; and at one time became the leader Aviner also has been active in the religious Zionist youth movement, eventually assuming the role of national director.

Rabbi Aviner holds a M.A. in Mathematics and is an Electrical Engineer by profession.

After relocating to Israel in 1966, Rabbi Aviner studied at Yeshivat Merkaz Harav which was under the direction of Rabbi Tzvi Yehuda Kook, son of Israel's first Chief Rabbi, Avraham Yitzchak Kook.

At one point Rabbi Aviner became the rabbinical leader of Kibbutz Lavi in the Galil and Moshav Keshet on the Golan Heights. Since 1981, he has been the rabbi of Bet El.

He is also a Reserve Lieutenant in the Israel Defense Forces.

Rabbi Aviner's known for providing spiritual counseling to youth and young couples to Prime Ministers and heads of the Security Establishment.

In 2005, two women accused the Aviner of creating emotionally intimate relationships with them. These relationships included his expressions of his love for them during regular late-night phone conversations, extracting details from them of their sexuality and promoting an unhealthy emotional dependence on him.

Today, Rabbi Aviner serves as the head rabbi of Beit El and as Rosh Yeshiva (Dean) of Ateret Cohanim Yeshiva, which is located in the Muslim Quarter of Jerusalem and a leader of the Religious Zionist movement. Rabbi Aviner has hundreds of published works. He has columns that appear weekly in the Israeli daily Ma'ariv, and in the Machon Meir weekly newsletter "BeAhava U'Bemuna"; and currently has a regular radio show with Arutz Sheva.

Chazak Chazak Venischazek said...

A few months ago, I had a long talk with a Trader Joe's manager. I discussed with him in detail Rubashkin's health & kashrus violations. I pointed out that as I'm a very Orthodox Jew, I obviously don't have any agendas like vegetarianism that they often get an earful about. He promised to take it up with upper management at HQ.

State of the Jews is now reporting that the official decision by Trader Joe's to chuck Rubashkin was made about 2 months ago. So much for Lubinsky's wild claim of increasing market share.

Ephraim Bryks said...

What's wrong with Shlomo Aviner being a spokesman on abuse and counseling women?

UOJ Outer Space Dept said...

When no one can hear you scream:
After complaining that a senior rabbi harassed her, a settlement resident becomes an outcast

By Ruth Sinai

Haaretz Daily - March 31, 2003


They warned her mother that her sisters' chances of a good match would be damaged, claims B.G. They tried to turn her brother and her husband's family against her. Over 100 rabbis, she says, including at least three candidates for the post of chief rabbi, signed notices that appeared in newspapers calling her a liar. Speeches have been made denouncing her, she claims, while Rabbi Moshe Bleicher, head of the Shavei Hebron Yeshiva, has published an article saying she suffers from mental illness and from hallucinations.

This is only part of the degradation B.G., a settlement resident, has suffered since a newspaper interview five months ago in which she alleged that she had been the victim of "improper behavior of a sexual nature," as she puts it, on the part of Beit El rabbi, Shlomo Aviner, who also heads the Ateret Cohanim Yeshiva.

A second woman also alleged in the same interview that Aviner had sexually harassed her, both physically and verbally, and that she had been forced to move away.

"The mask of abuse and scheming that we lifted simply astounded us - 123 rabbis claimed that the two women were crazy and liars without knowing a thing about them, just because of what Rabbi Aviner and Rabbi Bleicher said," says Hannah Kahat, head of "Kolech" ("Your Voice") a forum for religious women that seeks to improve their status within the community.

The mass mobilization of the rabbinical institution to defend Rabbi Aviner has been coupled with a campaign not meant merely to silence the allegations, but also to eject these women from their community. Their full names have been diffused throughout the settlements along with supposed details of their lives.

B.G. felt like she had been backed into a corner. The two women filed a complaint with the police, but it was made clear to them that in this case, the matter was only borderline on the criminal. Even their appeals to a number of top rabbis, including Mordechai Eliahu, former Sephardi chief rabbi, were rejected. Only Rabbi Eli Ben-Dahan, head of the Rabinnical Court, was prepared to look into matters, but only on condition that they did not go to any other body. By talking to the papers, and thus exposing the allegations against Aviner, however, they broke the rules.

"Everything that I underwent emotionally until it all came out is steeped in pain," said B.G. a few days ago. "But what hurts most can be summed up in six words - my voice is not being heard. No one in my camp ... people I grew up with, whose opinion and honesty I always valued, is willing to listen to me."

The mere thought that these allegations will be hushed up and that Rabbi Aviner will be protected and remain a favorite of the Hassidim, while she is left with all the pain and embarrassment, has given B.G. little rest. Just last week, she filed a petition with a district court of the Kiryat Araba religious council in which she alleges that Aviner caused "severe and prolonged emotional distress ... involving sexual innuendo, prohibited affectionate touches and expressions." She also alleges that Aviner and Bleicher have given her a bad name and she asks the court to order the rabbis to publicly recant what they said and to compensate her. When it comes to such petitions in religious courts, however, the defendant must be in agreement before a trial is launched.

Aviner said in response that he is happy that there will finally be some sort of clarification of the case. He claims to have suggested such a discussion in a rabbinical court or some other such forum before the case was made public, which would have saved a lot of suffering on both sides, he adds, but his suggestion was rejected.

In her interview with the Ma'ariv newspaper, B.G. relates how 15 years ago, she went to Aviner seeking marriage counseling. This continued over the course of eight years, involving dozens of conversations, often late into the night, frequent meetings and letters. In the article, it is alleged that Aviner told B.G. that she had a beautiful body and allegedly said that "penetration is a very nice thing."

Aviner in response did not deny some of the statements attributed to him, but claims that they were taken out of context. He told Haaretz that the claims were all lies that had already been investigated by rabbis and other officials and found to be totally groundless.

B.G. is stunned by this claim, which also appeared in a statement by Bleicher, as neither she nor the other woman were asked to testify. What kind of investigation could have been held without consulting the two women, she asks. Sources close to Rabbi Aviner said in response that Rabbi Bleicher knows a thing or two about the complainant as he knows her brother-in-law and one of her brothers. Bleicher himself was unavailable for comment.

Imitating UOJ is the highest form of flattery said...


Friday, May 23, 2008

Pravda Ne'eman Redux

After a nearly two-year absence, Pravda Ne'eman has decided to resume active blogging.

Why did we stop blogging? A combination of factors led us to cease our (time consuming) blog effort: the hectic kollel schedule, various family responsibilities and finally the workload that comes with the pursuit of advanced professional degrees.

Who are we? Pravda Ne'eman has always been a group effort. In fact, we are a pair of bloggers - J.D. and M.D. From now on, all posts will be signed by the authoring blogger.

Why are we back? Well, we are both older now (and somewhat wiser?) and perhaps more adept at time management. In addition, the separation of posts by author should lead to a doubling of our output. Or one lazy blogger. Who knows?

Also, our Yated-only mocking, by definition, led to a limited amount of material. We are now branching out into commentary on all facets of Chareidi life, leaders and organizations. Cross-Currents, Mishpacha, Yated, HaModia, Avi Shafran - you name it, we'll comment (often unintelligently) on it.

Please feel free to read our archives, comment actively on our new posts and join the Pravda community.

"UOJ" - "The Un-Orthodox Jew" said...

A universal calamity!

LONDON, England (CNN) -- Humanitarian aid workers and United Nation peacekeepers are sexually abusing small children in several war-ravaged and food-poor countries, a leading European charity has said.

Children like this 15-year-old girl have suffered abuse at the hands of some UN soldiers and aid workers.

1 of 2 Children as young as 6 have been forced to have sex with aid workers and peacekeepers in return for food and money, Save the Children UK said in a report released Tuesday.

After interviewing hundreds of children, the charity said it found instances of rape, child prostitution, pornography, indecent sexual assault and trafficking of children for sex.

"It is hard to imagine a more grotesque abuse of authority or flagrant violation of children's rights," Jasmine Whitbread, chief executive of Save the Children UK, said.

In the report, "No One To Turn To" a 15-year-old girl from Haiti told researchers: "My friends and I were walking by the National Palace one evening when we encountered a couple of humanitarian men. The men called us over and showed us their penises.

"They offered us 100 Haitian gourdes ($2.80) and some chocolate if we would suck them. I said, 'No,' but some of the girls did it and got the money."

Save the Children says almost as shocking as the abuse itself, is the "chronic under-reporting" of the abuses. It believes that thousands more children around the world could be suffering in silence.

According to the charity, children told researchers they were too frightened to report the abuse, fearful that the abuser would come back to hurt them and that they would stop receiving aid from agencies, or even be punished by their family or community.

"People don't report it because they are worried that the agency will stop working here, and we need them," a teenage boy in southern Sudan told Save the Children.

The charity's research was centered on Ivory Coast, southern Sudan and Haiti, but Save the Children said the perpetrators of sexual abuse of children could be found in every type of humanitarian organization at all levels.

Save the Children is calling for a global watchdog to tackle the problem and said it was working with the U.N. to establish local mechanisms that will allow victims to easily report abuse.

"We are glad that Save the Children continues to shed a light on this problem. It actually follows up on a report that we did in 2002 with Save the Children. I think every population in the world has to confront this problem of exploitation and abuse of children," said Ron Redmond, chief spokesman for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Geneva, Switzerland.

"The United Nations has a zero-tolerance policy. It's one that UNHCR takes very, very seriously. In refugee camps, we have implemented very strong reporting mechanisms so that refugees can come forward to report any abuses or alleged abuses."

In 2003, U.N. Nepalese troops were accused of sexual abuse while serving in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Six soldiers were later jailed.

A year later, two U.N. peacekeepers were repatriated after being accused of abuse in Burundi, while U.N. troops also were accused of rape and sexual abuse in Sudan.

Last year, the U.N. launched an investigation into sexual abuse claims in Ivory Coast.

The vast majority of aid workers were not involved in any form of abuse or exploitation, but in "life-saving essential humanitarian work," Save the Children's Whitbread said.

But humanitarian and peacekeeping agencies working in emergency situations "must own up to the fact that they are vulnerable to this problem and tackle it head on," she said.

The aid agency said it had fired three workers for breaching its codes and called on others to do the same. The three men were dismissed in the past year for having had sex with girls aged 17 -- which the charity said is not illegal but is cause for loss of employment.

Other UK charities said they supported Save the Children's call for a global watchdog.

"Oxfam takes a zero-tolerance approach to sexual misconduct by its aid workers. All our staff across the world are held accountable by a robust code of conduct," Jane Cocking, Oxfam charity's humanitarian director said.

"We support Save the Children's calls for a global watchdog. We will do all we can to stamp out this intolerable abuse."

Menachem Lubinsky said...

Kessef, kessef tirdof.

talansky defies belsky's hazmana said...

JERUSALEM - An American businessman who is key to a corruption probe of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert told prosecutors Tuesday he handed the Olmert cash-stuffed envelopes and suspected some of the money went to fund the Israeli leader's expensive tastes.

Police are investigating whether Olmert illicitly took up to $500,000 from Morris Talansky in illegal campaign contributions or bribes.

Olmert has said the funds were legal campaign contributions, and has promised to step down if indicted.

Talansky told the court Tuesday that most of the money he turned over at meetings in New York and Jerusalem was to cover Olmert's political activities over a 15-year period. But he also said Olmert's assistant, Shula Zaken, would often ask for cash to cover unidentified personal expenses.

Talansky, a 75-year-old Jewish-American businessman, said there were no records of how that money was spent.

"I only know that he loved expensive cigars. I know he loved pens, watches. I found it strange," Talansky told the court, then shrugged.

During Tuesday's questioning, Talansky said much of the money was raised in New York "parlor meetings," where Olmert would address American donors who would then leave contributions on their chairs.

All in all, Talansky said, he passed on about $150,000 to Olmert in donations and loans, some or all of which were not repaid. It was unclear how much of this was his own money, though he said at one point he used his personal credit card to pay a hotel bill.

Talansky said he did not receive any favors in return.

The new revelations are certain to further sully the reputation of the already unpopular Olmert. The investigation is the fifth that police have launched into Olmert's financial affairs since he took office, and there is widespread speculation that the savvy former attorney and Jerusalem mayor might not be able to weather the latest charges.

The donations took place before and during Olmert's 10-year tenure as Jerusalem mayor, which ended in 2003, and his subsequent years as trade minister. Olmert became prime minister in early 2006.

Talansky, of Long Island, N.Y., repeatedly voiced his admiration for Olmert, who was a leading politician in the hardline Likud party during the period in question. In late 2005, Olmert bolted the Likud to help form the centrist Kadima Party, which he now leads.

"I had a very close relationship with him, but I wish to add at this time at the relationship of 15 years was purely of admiration," he added. "I never expected anything personally. I never had any personal benefits from this relationship whatsoever."

Talansky said Olmert preferred cash over checks for reasons connected to Likud fundraising regulations. "I didn't really grasp it. I didn't really work out how the system works over all," he said.

He also said Olmert asked for a number of loans. Talansky mentioned one loan of $25,000 to $30,000 for a trip to Italy and another loan for $15,000. He said he had asked Olmert to return the second loan as soon as possible, but explained that he was never repaid. It wasn't clear if Olmert returned the first loan.

Talansky, who is not a suspect in the case, appeared slightly nervous in the courtroom, which was packed with reporters. He took off his jacket and tie and drummed his fingers on a table.

Since Olmert has not been indicted, Tuesday's testimony was not part of a formal court proceeding against him. Instead, the court was taking Talansky's testimony because he resides in the U.S. and authorities are concerned he might not return to Israel to testify in the future.

Ahead of the testimony, State Attorney Moshe Lador told reporters not to jump to conclusions and called media reports "incorrect and irresponsible."

"There is no decision. We are at the height of the investigation. The case could develop in different directions down the road — there is a possibility that the whole case could be dropped, and there is also a possibility that another decision will be made in the case," Lador said.

Police have said the charges span a 12-year period. Detectives have raided Jerusalem city hall and the trade ministry and have grilled Olmert twice. Olmert's former law partner and Zaken, his longtime assistant, have also been questioned. The probe is expected to take months.

Questions about Rabbi Aviner said...


This blog may be of interest.

Questions About Aviner

We will shortly be coming out with a translation of Rabbi Elba's attempts to bring a variety of complaints [including at least one harrassment complaint] against Shlomo Aviner. The Hebrew original can be viewed here.

Foreign Corrupt Practices Act said...


May 23, 2008
More U.S. Legal Troubles for Figure in Israeli Case

Morris Talansky, the Long Island man at the heart of a corruption investigation in Israel that may topple Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, faces more legal problems when he finishes testifying and returns to New York.

Kool-Tech, a privately owned minibar company that he helped finance three years ago, and with whom he has been feuding, sued him in State Supreme Court in Manhattan on Thursday, accusing him of breaching his fiduciary duty by seeking to help a competitor steal a multiyear contract with a New York hotel.

Mr. Talansky also faces the possibility that United States authorities have begun their own investigation into his business dealings with foreign officials because of antibribery statutes.

As far removed as it may seem from affairs of government, the minibar business has already figured into the Israeli investigation because of allegations that Mr. Olmert had received thousands of dollars in cash and gifts over the years from Mr. Talansky, and that Mr. Olmert may at one point have urged a wealthy casino mogul — unsuccessfully — to install Kool-Tech’s systems at his hotels.

Mr. Olmert and Mr. Talansky have both denied any wrongdoing to the Israeli press.

In another pending lawsuit, filed in 2007 in Nassau County, the minibar company accused Mr. Talansky of arranging improperly to have the company reimburse him for a $4,717.49 hotel bill he incurred at the Ritz-Carlton in Washington in October 2005, when he treated “a senior Israeli cabinet member that had no relation to the business” to a night’s stay.

Though the official was not named in the lawsuit, William J. Davis, a lawyer for Kool-Tech, disclosed two weeks ago in an interview that it was Mr. Olmert, and that the hotel reservation had been made by Shula Zaken, Mr. Olmert’s longtime aide.

He said the company broke off ties with Mr. Talansky upon learning of the expenditure, largely out of a desire to steer clear of doing anything illegal or running afoul of laws like the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which prohibits bribes to foreign officials.

Mr. Davis said that he was told that the F.B.I. had opened an investigation that included Mr. Talansky’s activities, but he said that neither he nor his client had yet been contacted by the authorities. He would not disclose his source.

Selva Ozelli, a New York lawyer who has written extensively about the antibribery statute, agreed that paying the hotel bill for a foreign politician could violate the law if the American benefactor received something in return. To be illegal, the payment or gift “has to be in furtherance of their business purpose,” she said.

No one responded to a message left at the Talansky home in Woodsburgh, N.Y., and lawyers who have previously represented Mr. Talansky in commercial disputes either failed to return phone calls or said they had no information on the new lawsuit or the possibility of an F.B.I. investigation.

A New York spokesman for the F.B.I. said it was the agency’s policy not to confirm or deny investigations.

Mr. Talansky had proved helpful to Mr. Olmert when he was the mayor of Jerusalem by helping start and run the New Jerusalem Foundation, a charity meant to raise money for civic projects in Israel. Its United States office was at the same address as Mr. Talansky’s home. He was listed on tax returns as its treasurer, and his wife, Helene, was listed for a time as the organization’s secretary.

Mr. Talansky is also well known in both the United States and Israel for his work as a key fund-raiser in the United States for Shaare Zedek Hospital in Jerusalem. Tax returns show that he and his wife, a fellow employee of the hospital’s American charitable organization at the time, received more than $1 million in consulting fees and other payments from the organization in the seven years after they left the charity in 1997.

When Mr. Talansky joined Kool-Tech in 2005, his wife also obtained employment there as a bookkeeper.

One claim made by the company in the Nassau County lawsuit is that Mr. Talansky improperly withdrew $80,000 in company funds, falsified books to award himself $200,000 in extra capital and urged an employee to work for a competitor.

Mr. Talansky, meanwhile, who was the first to sue, accused the company of freezing him out of the business, failing to deliver a prototype for a new minibar, and using company funds to hire a $60,000-a-year personal assistant for the founder’s wife. “As a result, plaintiff’s investment and reputation in the business community have been greatly damaged,” Mr. Talansky argued in the initial complaint.

In the latest lawsuit, filed in Manhattan on Thursday, Kool-Tech accused Mr. Talansky of tampering with its 10-year contract at the Excelsior Hotel in New York by aligning himself with a competitor while telling the hotel’s general manager that Kool-Tech was financially shaky and going bankrupt.

Just a Matter of Time said...


Law enforcement source: Olmert's indictment is just a matter of time

By Jonathan Lis and Barak Ravid

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was interrogated under warning on Friday for about an hour, after which time a law-enforcement source said that "as of now, an indictment against Olmert is only a matter of time."

Olmert was also challenged for the first time with the testimony of his confidante Uri Messer, whom Olmert put in charge of the hundreds of thousands of dollars he received from Talansky.

Messer presented the police with incriminating evidence regarding the money, among other things claiming that Olmert had asked him to give back some of the money he had given Messer. Messer said he did not know what happened to that money.

According to sources, Olmert incriminated himself in his first questioning sessions about two weeks ago, when he admitted taking the cash from Talansky over the years.

"In the first questioning it was clear that Olmert was surprised. He did not know what material investigators had against him. We have no doubt that before the second questioning he had gotten advice from his battery of lawyers. It was clear he had had simulation sessions with them," a source in law enforcement said.

However, the sources said Olmert did not provide satisfactory explanations for the cash or explain why he did not record or report the money he received as required by law.

NY Post said...


Israel's corruption scandal took another bizarre twist yesterday when police said they suspected that a Long Island millionaire expected to deliver crucial testimony in court next week got Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to help him sell spy satellites in South America.

Olmert was interrogated for the second time after telling his inner circle he wasn't sure how much longer he'd be able to remain in office.

Police suspect him of receiving hundreds of thousands of dollars during his tenure as Israel's trade minister from Morris Talansky, a Woodmere, LI, businessman, in return for favors.

Sources said investigators were looking into charges that Olmert asked an Israeli diplomat in Venezuela to help Imagesat, in which Talansky is a major investor, sell its spy-satellite services to Hugo Chavez's government.

The $18 million deal never went through because of Israeli concerns that the technology would pass from Venezuela to Iran.

Anonymous said...

UOJ,Please, please, please don't start using this blog site to "out" mamzerim. To rant about a mamzer marriage for fear of some kind of spiritual pollution has you sounding as religiously nutty as any far-right-wing haredi idiot. (My bet is that this happened within a family that you can't stand for other reasons....) Stick to issues that truly cause damage to our community: uncover the molesters, free our agunot, decry the cycle of poverty of the yeshivah system, rail against fraud and corruption by those with unkempt beards and soiled tzitzit, etc. These are the essential issues within our community which cause physical and emotional suffering for individuals and families; these are the issues which cause our young people to leave and our way of life to become an object of contempt by Jews and non-Jews alike. Not mamzerim.

Anonymous said...



"UOJ" - "The Un-Orthodox Jew" said...

"Outing mamzerim" was NOT the theme of the post. I could have named the family(s).

Honoring mamzerim....as if it's NO big deal - is one of the many tragedies we face.

The duplicitous messages that are constantly being sent, just emphasizes that the rabbis, even the very few good ones, are being bought for a few filthy dollars!

Coming to a Moysad near you said...


May 26, 2008
Tax Exemptions of Charities Face New Challenges


Yitzchak Tshuva said...


American-Jewish businessman Morris Talansky told the Jerusalem District Court on Tuesday that he gave Prime Minister Ehud Olmert $150,000 out of his own pocket, speculating that some of the money went to fund Olmert's fondness for fine hotels, first-class flights and luxury goods.

Olmert volunteered to contact three billionaires, including Plaza Hotel owner Yitzhak Tshuva and Las Vegas casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, to try to drum up business for a hotel minibar venture run by Talansky.

He said the offer did not help, and Adelson slammed down the phone on him.

More on Olmert said...


State of Corruption


Cover story in Issue 4, June 10, 2008 of The Jerusalem Report.

Top of the World Cleaners said...


New Yorker Paid for Israeli PM's Drycleaning

Morris Talansky Appears in Court to Testify About Cash Handouts to Ehud Olmert

JERUSALEM, May 27, 2008

On several occasions, according to Talansky, he met Olmert in hotels in New York and Washington to give him the bulging envelopes.

He said that on one occasion he paid $4,700 for Olmert's three-day stay at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Washington, a bill which included dry cleaning and video rentals.

Gumshoe said...

What are the halachos about being mefarsem on mamzerim who are incognito?

"UOJ" - "The Un-Orthodox Jew" said...

If someone called me for shidduch information, I believe - according to Rav Pam ztvk"l - I would be required to disclose it.

Otherwise - I do not intend to!

Boro Park Fresser said...

It was bad enough when Top of the World Cleaners became tenants of Chaim Berlin but since the Goldbergs sold it it's being going steadily downhill.

They just raised the price to about $2 a shirt claiming that oil to heat the presses is very expensive. I find it hard to believe they aren't locked in to a set price.

They are getting sloppy on replacing broken buttons.

They keep stapling the tags to the shirts.

They keep destroying the collars just like the cheap places with plastic starch.

They come up with more excuses than Margo has greenback stuffed in his mattress.

Anonymous said...

UOJ, the blogger known as XGH had a posting last week about the RCA and David Cohen's radical views (the posting is below). Let us keep in mind that no one has advocated that theft from a gentile is permissible for the past two thousand years and RDC admits that his views are against the Shulchan Aruch and practically all of the other sifrei halacha.

XGH Post
Rabbi Dovid Cohen, Tax Fraud, Child Molestation and the RCA (all the muck you need in one convenient place!)
Rabbi Dovid Cohen (RDC) is the Morah De'asrah of Gvul Yaavetz in Brooklyn, and also of OHEL. He is well known for his somewhat extremist views on all manner of things and has been the subject of some controversy in the past. He gave a speech a while back in Bergenfield where he very clearly and very publicly stated that there's nothing wrong with tax evasion according to Halachah (and has said to numerous people on other occasions that gezel akum in genera is ok), and that dina demalchusah wasn't an issue. He also said he would deny saying this if it ever got him into trouble!

This caused some of the fine MO residents of Teaneck to go a bit apoplectic, especially since RDC is on the Va'ad Haposkim of the RCA, and was part of the famous RCA Teshuvah banning smoking. Some people tried contacting the RCA and asking them how on earth they could be associated with such a person, but the RCA wasn't interested in talking about it, and basically stonewalled them.
The MO crowd are also furious because Rabbi Dovid Cohen "is also well known to have publicly humiliated Rav Soloveitchik in 1960 in a shocking manner" (their words). While that is a long time ago, David Cohen is known to be still proud of his actions. You can hear the entire story in R. Cohen's own words in this link

ff/2001-09-03_Rabbi_Yitzhak_Hutner___3-Sept-01> .

The tape is from 2001. The RCA leadership is well aware of this tape and does not seem to care. "We essentially have a situation in which the RCA, which is almost entirely composed of students of the Rav, or Rabbis who claim to view the Rav as their spiritual mentor, is now willing to place on their most elite committee a man who has no regret over having publicly attacked the Rav".

I also heard that RDC said some very crazy things about child molesters and mesirah, but I don't want to get into that at all.

Anonymous said...

The RCA leadership says they interrogated Rabbi Dovid Cohen about the tax evasion issue. They feel confidant with RDC's denial and that he was likely misunderstood by some am haaratzim.

There is an understandable explanation as to RDC's flare up at the YU shiur as detailed by Professor Marc Shapiro on his blog. If anything it was that lummox and potential apikorus David Hartman who was the behaymah in that episode.

I am no fan of Dovid Cohen. I just think we should be concentrating on the things he really did wrong like giving a pass to Kolko & Margo.

"UOJ" - "The Un-Orthodox Jew" said...

Dovid Cohen is the menuvel that gave Mondrowitz a pass....urging him to flee the country before the police got to him. His judgement is warped - who knows how many other sick individuals he let slip by?

What kind of an animal can give a pass to Mondrowitz, Kolko and Margulies? Dovid Cohen! (among others)

Crazy Stuff said...

So everyone that wants to make a shidduch from on now must pass the info to UOJ to see if it's the mamzerim.

Anonymous said...

if your making a shidduch just ask dovid cohen (not rabbi but menuval()

if he says go ahead then run like crazy

UOJ whens the bombshell on torah umesora

Cleveland Putz said...


Vandalized homes are just one aspect of the fallout from the national subprime mortgage meltdown that has hit the Ohio city particularly hard. Since 2000, Cuyahoga County, which encompasses Cleveland, has recorded 80,000 foreclosures — the most per capita in the country. Nearly 19 percent of those foreclosures occurred last year, according to city statistics.

Anonymous said...

The RCA leadership did not interrogate David Cohen -- I saw their correspondence over a six month period in which they acknowledged that they were aware of his statements. To cover themselves, they got some letter from David Cohen in which they claim he denied making the statements in question. That is laughable to all of the people who have heard him speak about these matters as he always says that he will have to deny his statements if they get him in trouble. Did the RCA hear from the hundreds of people who heard David Cohen say that you do not have to listen to the halahcos in Choshen Mishpat on these matters? The answer is no --they were not interested -- they were just intersted in covering the whole thing up. They have learned nothing from the Lanner scandal. It is the same cover up machine as before. This is important because we can't battle the deep rooted corruption in our community if we give a pass to Rabbis like David Cohen who enable it by throwing the Shulchan Aruch and our mesorah in the garbage.

"UOJ" - "The Un-Orthodox Jew" said...

Why doesn't someone ask Dovid Cohen if he's permitted to get bimkom Cohen. ( first aliyah if there's no Cohen in the shul)

Anonymous said...

UOJ, have you confirmed that Cohen gave a pass to Mondrowitz and helped him flee? What evidence do you have? I am not surprised that a bastard like him would do such a thing but I am interested in any evidence.

"UOJ" - "The Un-Orthodox Jew" said...

I'm not going to get into any of the issues that are certain to come up in the Mondrowitz trial.

For now; Ohel and Cohen are in over their heads, unless someone gets to Hynes.

Don't discount Sheldon Silver's role in protecting Ohel for years!

Uri L’tzedek said...


Uri L’tzedek, a project started by students at Yeshivat Chovevei Torah, a liberal Orthodox rabbinical school in Manhattan, began circulating a petition asking Agriprocessors to pay its workers at least the federal minimum wage, abide by laws pertaining to workers’ rights and treat employees according to Torah standards.

Organizers say that about 450 people from across the denominational spectrum had signed as of Monday.

“Until these changes are made, we feel compelled to refrain from purchasing or consuming meat produced by your company, and will pressure every establishment with which we do business to cease purchase of your meat,” the petition reads. “Effective June 15, 2008 we will stop patronizing any restaurant that sells your meat.”

Last week, in a sign of the controversy’s impact, a supermarket in a heavily Jewish suburb of Philadelphia posted a sign stating that its kosher chicken was produced by Empire, a major poultry competitor.

The store director told JTA that the market was unable to procure chicken from Aaron’s, which it had been selling for three years, and wanted to inform customers of the change.

Speculation is rife over whether prosecutors are investigating the company itself, especially after one Postville resident with ties to Agriprocessors confirmed last week that he had been summoned to appear before a grand jury.

A spokesman for the local U.S. Attorney’s Office would not comment on the matter.

In Washington, the House Committee on Education and Labor held a hearing May 20 on the raid, focusing mainly on its impact on the children of detained workers. But members of Congress also have expressed concern that the raids targeted illegal workers while letting their employers off the hook.

Braley, who represents the northeast Iowa area where the plant is located, has called for an investigation of the company.

“Until we enforce our immigration laws equally against both employers and employees who break the law, we will continue to have a problem with illegal immigration,” Braley said. “Naturally the sheer number of arrests made by ICE [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] during Monday’s raid raises questions about Agriprocessors Inc.’s knowledge of possible violations of employment and immigration law.”

Within the Jewish world, the loudest reactions have come from the Conservative movement and the liberal edge of Orthodoxy. Interviews with some of Postville’s Chabad residents and other observers suggest that the fervently Orthodox, or haredi community, is taking the flood of accusations against Agriprocessors with more than a grain of salt.

“The problem is, there’s a mind-set that you have to give the person the benefit of the doubt,” said Binyomin Jolkovsky, the editor of Jewish World Review and a longtime observer of haredi Jewry. “But when 12 government agencies come in and do a sting operation, and after something that was so detailed, you got to wonder.”

In the haredi community, Jolkovsky said, the sentiment tends to be much more focused on the bottom line for the consumer.

“‛They’re paying people $5 an hour labor, how come I’m paying $7 a pound for steak?’ That’s what they were saying,” he said.

Some Jewish Postville residents refused to even consider some of the government’s allegations, such as that methamphetamine was being produced at the plant or that the company was shorting its workers. In the days after the raid, several told JTA that the affair was the product of an anti-Orthodox, if not anti-Semitic, agenda.

“Many of the allegations are ridiculous, like the meth labs,” said Aaron Goldsmith, a Chabad rabbi and former Postville city councilman with ties to the Rubashkins. “Why would somebody want to pour millions and millions of dollars into infrastructure and let a poor man’s drug business run in a plant? It doesn’t make any sense to me. It’s stupid. It’s not in the interest of the company.”

Goldsmith, who runs a custom hospital-bed business headquartered near Agriprocessors, acknowledged that whatever the truth of the allegations, the company’s reputation is “in trouble.”

Asked what he would say to kosher consumers concerned about the charges flying against the company, Goldsmith paused for nearly a minute before answering.

“Clearly the Rubashkins need to rethink a lot of their management style,” he said, “because whatever good they do and whatever errors they made are completely perceived in a way that’s undermining their own company. To me, they need to bring the reality and the perceptions in line with each other.”

Son of Boog said...

Why do you think Shelly "I don't go to cops' funerals" Silver won't allow the mandatory background checks for yeshivos? He knows which filthy frocks butter his bread.

Agudah Fresser said...

“‛They’re paying people $5 an hour labor, how come I’m paying $7 a pound for steak?’ That’s what they were saying,”

Yeah man! Rubashkin has been laughing all the way to bank for years on our cheshbon! For this he deserves skeelah!

Open Letter to Rubashkin said...


Lag b’Omer 5768

May 23, 2008

Mr. Aaron Rubashkin
220 N West St
Postville, IA 52162

Dear Mr. Rubashkin,

We write to you out of a deep sense of ahavat Torah and ahavat Yisrael, with both great respect and great concern.

Your company produces 60 percent of the beef and 40 percent of the chicken provided to the kosher marketplace in America. You employ 968 factory employees and serve as a pillar of the food economy. Your generous philanthropy supports moral and significant causes and is a great source of pride for Israel and Jewish institutions around the world. You are an important and respected leader of the Jewish community.

Therefore it is with great frustration and sadness that we write this letter. We are the kosher meat consumers of America. We are mothers and fathers raising our children in a kosher home. We are rabbis, teachers, and Jewish professionals who use your products in our work. Since you control much of the kosher meat market in America, we rely on you to uphold the halakhic requirements, both ritual and ethical, of the food we eat. We believe you have failed, and we are deeply troubled.

We are deeply troubled that you have demonstrated a pattern of knowingly exploiting undocumented workers, to paying them less than market wages and treating them poorly.
We are deeply troubled that according to many experts, the wages you pay your workers are the lowest of any slaughterhouse in the nation.
We are deeply troubled that, despite years of public inquiry and concern over worker conditions at your plant, AgriProcessors was cited for 39 new health and safety violations in March 2008. It pains us to hear that examinations of Agriprocessor's OSHA logs reveal amputations, broken bones, eye injuries and hearing loss that occurred at your plant.
We are deeply troubled that animals have been abused against the laws of tzaar baalei chaim, causing needless pain to animals.
We are deeply troubled that among the hundreds of workers who were arrested by federal officials on May 12, eighteen were children between ages 13 and 17.
We are deeply troubled to read reports of various criminal operations taking place at the Postville plant, the account of a Jewish floor supervisor who severely abused a Guatemalan worker in the most reprehensible conditions, and allegations of sexual assault and verbal abuse.
On your website, you state as your values that “as a producer of kosher meat products, we approach our business in the context of a deep religious tradition.” Undoubtedly you agree that our shared deep religious does not approve of these practices, and we therefore write this letter in the spirit of the mitzvah of hocheiach tochiach et amitecha, to give rebuke where it is needed so that a fellow Jew can make right what is wrong.

We ask the following:

1. Pay all of your workers at least the federal minimum wage.

2. Recommit your company to abide by all federal, state and local laws including those pertaining worker safety, sexual harassment, physical abuse, and the rights of your employees to collective bargaining.

3. Treat those who work for you according to the standards that Torah and halakha places on protecting workers--standards which include the spirit of lifnim meshurat hadin, going beyond the bare minimum requirements of the law.

In order to ensure that you meet these modest requests, we ask that you establish a department and staff with external transparency to a reputable, objective third party to deal exclusively with these three concerns. We ask that you maintain this office on an ongoing basis to ensure the basic ethical standards demanded by Torah, the U.S. government, and the American Jewish community.

Until these changes are made, we feel compelled to refrain from purchasing or consuming meat produced by your company, and will pressure every establishment with which we do business to cease purchase of your meat. Effective June 15, 2008 we will stop patronizing any restaurant that sells your meat.

Mr. Rubashkin, you have been a leader in the kosher meat industry, and we look forward to seeing you lead the way for all American meat processors, not only in the kashrut of your products, but in the yashrut of every aspect of your business.

אודך בישר לבב בלמדי משפטי צדקך

I will give thanks to You with upright heart, when I study Your ordinances that are righteous.

תהלים קי"ט:ז Pslams 119:7


Uri L’Tzedek uri.ltzedek@gmail.com

US Labor Secretary Elaine Chao said...


Washington, D.C. — Leaders of a congressional committee are pressing the U.S. Department of Labor for answers on whether an ongoing investigation of child labor and wage violations at a meatpacking plant in Postville, Ia., will be compromised by a May 12 immigration raid there.

Democratic leaders of the House Education and Labor Committee have written to Labor Secretary Elaine Chao. They're also asking for more information on the complaints that prompted the Agriprocessors investigation, and whether federal labor officials had any involvement with the raid. The raid was conducted by Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents.

The letter was sent May 16 and signed by Rep. Lynn Woolsey, chairwoman of a subcommittee on workforce protection, and Rep. George Miller, chairman of the full committee. Both are California Democrats.

Woolsey presided over a hearing May 20 on the impact on children and families of a string of recent worksite raids. ICE was the only federal agency represented at the hearing. The head of the National Council of La Raza, a Hispanic advocacy organization, raised similar questions at the hearing about a compromised labor investigation.

Mark Lauritsen, international vice president of the United Food and Commercial Workers, also has written Chao, saying that his “worst fears are being realized” and the investigation will be undercut.

Department officials in Washington had no immediate comment on the congressional letter.

Woolsey and Miller asked for assurances from the secretary of labor that an investigation by state and federal officials will not be undermined. Officials are probing whether children as young as middle school were employed at the plant, and whether wages below the federal minimum were paid.

Woolsey and Miller said they also want assurances that the threat of future raids will not deter workers from bringing complaints to the attention of federal investigators, including on matters that bear on the health and safety of children.

They said they want to be sure the department has the opportunity to interview any detained workers, and that they are not deported before interviews can be completed.

Hundreds of employees were detained in the raid at Postville, the largest single-site immigration enforcement action in U.S. history. More than 300 were charged with fraud-related crimes.

No Agriprocessors owners or managers have been charged. The company announced Friday that its chief executive officer, Sholom Rubashkin, will be replaced.

Woolsey and Miller, setting a deadline of Friday, asked for copies of communication between the labor agency and ICE either prior to, during or after the raid. They told Chao they want to know:

• The status and scope of the labor investigation;

• Whether labor officials had advance notice of the raid, or any involvement;

• Whether there are any written policies or explanations of what happens when a raid occurs at a worksite where there is an ongoing labor investigation;

• The extent of the department’s cooperation with the Iowa Department of Labor or any other state or local agencies;

• An explanation of what steps the department is taking so that future investigations are not undermined.

Sign the anti-Rubashkin petition said...


If you haven't already signed on through email, you may sign the petition here or by sending an email with your name in the subject line to uri.ltzedek@gmail.com


Join us in ensuring an ethical kashrut industry!

Chamira Sakanta Meissura said...

I’m still freaked out about the Meth lab INSIDE RUBASHKIN. Not only is meth a totally dangerous drug, but also, the chemical offset of Meth is so harmful that Meth Lab sites are HAZMAT sites.

I read somewhere that this woman got really ill after moving into her new home, she was in the hospital all the time, her family was in the hospital all the time… and then someone tested her yard for contaminants, and it turned out the former homes occupants had a meth lab in the backyard, and the chemical offset was what was making her family sick. The DEA had to come in to clean up and they had to dig down 12 feet into the soil before finding uncontaminated soil.

So basically what I’m posing is, how do we know that all the "kosher" meat isn’t somehow also tainted by this?

One of the chain smoking Pinter boys from Brisk? said...


Thief fails to steal cigarettes; fights way out of store

REGISTER STAFF • May 27, 2008

Shmarya said...

Did A Rubashkin Flee The Country?
This is still an unconfirmed rumor, so take it with a large grain of salt. I've been told by a normally reliable source that…

…a daughter of Aaron Rubashkin, the one who runs the Florida kosher food distribution company, fled the country.


Supposedly, the tactics she used to strong-arm accounts into dropping Empire and other non-Rubashkin brands crossed the legal line into criminality.

These tactics are said to include things like telling stores if they wanted to carry Rubashkin red meat – which she was selling at heavy discount – they could only get it if they also exclusively sold Rubashkin chickens – no Empire, etc., allowed.

With the Feds apparently hot in pursuit of her father and brothers, and being herself at, it is thought, grave risk of indictment, she ran.

Is this true?

As I said, I'm not sure.

If you've seen her recently, or if you know anything about her strong-arm tactics, please let us know.

Her alleged strong-arm tactics were all over Jewish blogs two years ago, so there's nothing new in reporting them.

The reason for my post is to try to find out whether or not she left the country and, if she did leave, what the reason is.

Menachem Lubinsky said...

She's running away from the anti-Semitic stormtroopers. And they call America a democracy?

"Uncle Milty" Balkany said...

I can't protect my sister in law in the Federal Bureau of Prisons any longer. Splitting the country would be a smart move for her and the rest of the Rubashkins.

"Uncle Morris" Talansky said...

Coming to Israel is not such a smart idea either. They can pull a tzavaat ikkoov on you!

LVF said...

Shalom uoj !

Its been awhile since I last commented here, But as good ole sean hannity says "let not your heart be troubled", I kept up with all the latest news here just did not have enough time to interact.

The rub-ass-kin scandal was great news to me, especially after I told my parents awhile back that I stopped buying rubashkin meats and buy only the way more expensive meats of satmar, at the time they thought I was nuts! but started understanding after the federal raid.

Now, regarding mondrowitz, do you have anyone in israel keeping you up to date about his appeal due date, I think it was schedualed for the end of may do you have more info from the "heilig lond" or is everyone busy with olmerts long island boy?

Peace be unto you,
your Chaver

"UOJ" - "The Un-Orthodox Jew" said...

Missed you R'LVF. I was thinking that I should e-mail you. I'm happy you're back and well.

Mondrowitz's final appeal is scheduled for Thursday May 29. Of course, the Rebbe is working the thieves in Olmert's closet/cabinet.

LVF said...

Of course, the Rebbe is working the thieves in Olmert's closet/cabinet.

How can you say that? do you have any idea how busy the gerer rabbonim are with trying to rid the gerer homes of the treifena internet, making sure every parent who has a kid in either of the boys or girls mosdos has to sign a paper stating they do not have internet at home, and if they do who is their rav that gave them the heter, and if the letter was not signed they got a final notice that their kid will be expelled from school.

Screw you MF and big dave olewski !! what happened? are you afraid of the internet and people finding out about avremel mondrowitz, that god willing will be here soon, in brooklyn, hey! elya fisher feeling a bit queesy lately ? remembering those days of some 20+ years ago when you helped mondro scadoodle out of america, all of that and more will in the very near future be public knowledge once his case goes before a brooklyn judge, and what will you say then? its all b/c of the treifena internet? or is it b/c people are still using the non rabbinical approved cell phones?
Thats it, that must be it, the "kosherphone", thats why there is so much tzoros on klal yisroel, Rabboisi!! lets all make a cheshbon hanefesh and throw out our cellphones, and in the merit of getting only the Kosher phone should we be zoyche to the geulla shliema.

Moetzes Resign! said...


By Gwen Ackerman and Alisa Odenheimer

May 28 (Bloomberg) -- Prime Minister Ehud Olmert should step down while police conduct an investigation into the Israeli leader's finances, Defense Minister Ehud Barak said.

``I don't think the prime minister can simultaneously run the government and deal with personal issues,'' Barak, who is also leader of the Labor Party, Olmert's biggest coalition partner, said at a news conference in Jerusalem today.

Barak's call underscores the pressure on Olmert after U.S. businessman "Uncle Moishy" Talansky yesterday told a Jerusalem court that he transferred about $150,000 to Olmert over almost two decades, sometimes in cash-filled envelopes. Olmert, 62, denied in a May 8 statement that he took bribes and described the funds as campaign contributions.

``Events are slowly closing in on him,'' said Shmuel Sandler, a professor of political science at Bar Ilan University. ``The question is only how much chutzpa does he have.''

Avi L. Shafran, Olmert's spokesman, had no immediate comment.

Legally, Olmert doesn't have to resign until convicted, and the government needn't hold elections until 2010.

Wall Street Journal said...


Drop in Home Prices Accelerates to 14.1%
Fewer Americans
Plan to Buy Soon,
Putting Off Bottom
May 28, 2008; Page A3

Home prices are falling at an accelerating pace, new data show, while a separate report found a shrinking share of Americans plan to buy a home anytime soon, suggesting more price declines in the months to come.

The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller index for the first quarter showed prices for existing homes nationwide declined 14.1% from a year earlier, compared with a year-to-year drop of 8.9% in the fourth quarter.

A separate S&P index that tracks 20 major metropolitan areas on a monthly basis showed home prices dropped 14.4% in March from a year earlier and 2.2% from February.

Wall St Research Notes said...

The sizeable March revision (-17,000) [to new-home sales data] was the bigger story, as it may suggest a higher level of abandonment by buyers who walked away from contracts. –Guy LeBas, Janney Montgomery Scott

Inventory of existing homes is still very close to its record high so prices will continues to fall rapidly. Since its May 06 peak the Case-Shiller index is now down 15.7%; we expect the peak-to-trough drop to reach 25-to-30%. –Ian Shepherdson, High Frequency Economics

Democrats want Taxpayers to Pay for a Bailout said...


Obama Heads West to Push
Housing Proposals in Swing States

May 28, 2008; Page A4

LAS VEGAS -- Sen. Barack Obama is hoping the housing mess can help sway the November election. The Democratic front-runner pitched his plans to stem the crisis during a visit on Tuesday to Nevada, the state with the highest rate of home foreclosures

The mortgage crisis has played a central role in the presidential primary between Sen. Obama and his Democratic rival, New York Sen. Hillary Clinton. Both have laid out detailed plans to aid families facing foreclosures and criticized Arizona Sen. John McCain, the likely Republican nominee, for his view that the government shouldn't get too involved in the crisis.

The OU is a disgrace! said...


They are helping Rubashkin violate this 1937 takona of Rav Eliezer Silver and all the big rabbonim in America. The issur was reiterated in 1955 when R' Moishe was on the Agudas Harabbonim.

Montreal said...

There are going to be dozens of Moroccans in Montreal and some in Toronto who will be arrested for a major scam with small business loans. The RCMP & Revenue Canada have been building a case against them for a while now. Someone figured out how the loans worked and started charging an illegal fee to channel them. They were purposely funneled into businesses that were designed to collapse so that they could keep the money.

You heard it first on UOJ.

Crown Heights said...

Moshe Rubashkin, the felon form Crown Heights, also fled Crown Heights.

It is not clear yet if he fled the country or if only fled Crown Heights as soon as the new scandal in postvile broke out.

As is well known, this convicted felon is about to be sentence on new charges in July, where he and his brother Sholom, may now face a possible new 5 year Jail term.

Many believe that he may have fled C.H., to Postville Iowa in order to help manage the place, in face of the new turmoil and in case his brother Sholom is arrested in Postville Iowa (which is likely) for the Illegal Immigrant scandals.

In Crown Heights the media is all over the place in the past 2 weeks because of the new growing racial tensions and while everyone is meeting with the media and with elected officials over the growing crime problem, yet Moshe Rubashkin's face is neve, ever seen, with any elected officials who come to Crown Heights regularly, now!!!

Moshe Rubashkin has good reason to maintain a very low profile (he is very afraid to face the media) now and is believed by many to have been forced to leave C.H., leave his position as director of the multi million dollar government funded Jewish Community Council, where this convicted felon, ironically convicted on Check Fraud had actualy singed all the Community Council checks, until recently.

Moshe Rubashkin has not yet formally announced his resignation as director of the Crown Heights Jewish Community Council and as head of the Vaad Hakohol of Crown Heights, but he has not been seen in Crown Heights, at all, since the Postvile scandal broke out.

Miami said...

About 2 years ago, there was a local (Florida) grocery chain trying to get in more kosher stuff and they were asking customers what they would be interested in. I had talked to someone about getting in Empire and after a few weeks, he was told that higher up in the chain of command, there was a decision made to only get Rubashkin's. Around that time (roughly 2 years ago) another chain severely reduced what they carries of Empire, but luckily that didn't last too long. A lot of local Kosher shops only have Rubashkins and sometimes a few scattered Israeli brands. Every single restaurant is Rubashkin meat. And here I thought that when I moved to Florida, I would be able to eat out all of the time.

Michael Hersh of Chaim Berlin / Hatzolah becomes Consultant to Govt said...


Deportations nationally have been stepped up from 500 six years ago to nearly 5,000 a year currently, but as is so often its way, the Bush administration has bungled the operation.

Deportees are piling up in makeshift detention centers. Health care is iffy and some detainees have died from apparent medical neglect. Hundreds, to make their removal easier, have been injected with psychotropic drugs, with some being virtually dragged onto airplanes.

Moetzes Resign! said...


Corruption probe poll: 70% of Israelis don't believe Olmert

"UOJ" - "The Un-Orthodox Jew" said...


OU Kosher presents:
“Kosher Home, Sweet Home”

A question-and-answer webcast session about the kosher kitchen
featuring OU Kashruth’s Poskim

Rabbi Yisroel Belsky
Rabbi Hershel Schachter

Thursday, May 29 - 2 PM

The OU Poskim will discuss questions, issues and concerns relating to your kosher kitchen - Many important and relevant questions have been received.

To get a copy of the highly acclaimed Kosher Kidz DVD for your camp, school or youth group, email Safrane@ou.org “Learn about kosher in a whole new way!”

“The Kosher Fish Primer” DVD being released by the end of the week…

Rabbi Eliyahu Safran
Senior Rabbinic Coordinator
Vice President - Communications and Marketing
Phone 212 613 8115
Visit our new www.OUDirect.org to manage your account

"Uncle Moishy" Talansky said...




May 28, 2008

Court documents show Talansky has been involved in a number of lawsuits over failed business relationships, and he's currently charged with assault for allegedly attacking his 84-year-old dentist over a financial dispute.

Talansky, who earned a degree in political science from Yeshiva University in Manhattan, served as a rabbi for a Pacific Northwest congregation before coming to New York more than 40 years ago. He also has taught philosophy and been a licensed securities dealer, according to court documents. He raised funds for Yeshiva University as a board member on the school's Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary.

State Assemb. Dov Hikind (D-Brooklyn) described him as "a good guy" whom he first met 20 years ago during a charitable fundraising project. "He's very smooth and very professional and very capable," Hikind said.

Talansky's highest-profile job was as director of American fundraising efforts for Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem. In court documents, Talansky said he raised more than $200 million for the hospital over his 20 years in the job.

Most recently, Talansky has made some of his money as an investor in a spy satellite company and in the minibar company Kooltech Inc., according to court documents.

Talansky has been involved in a number of lawsuits, and has a pending assault charge against him. Nassau police arrested Talansky last July and charged him with third-degree assault, a misdemeanor. Prosecutors say he is accused of attacking dentist Leonard Barashick during an argument in a Baldwin dental lab.

Barashick, 84, said he had been a close friend of Talansky for 40 years, describing him as a once selfless, caring man of faith, who spent his days visiting and making calls to sick acquaintances to give them his blessing.

Barashick said he had argued with his old friend in part because Talansky was upset Barashick was asking to be paid for a number of expensive dental procedures that Talansky was receiving at a significant discount. Eric Phillips, spokesman for the Nassau District Attorney's Office, said Talansky is accused of throwing Barashick into a metal dentist's chair and pushing him against a wall. Barashick said he was hospitalized with injuries to his legs.

Talansky's defense attorney, Ralph Bontempo of Albertson, did not return calls for comment. Talansky is due back in First District Court next month in Hempstead.

Police responded to another dispute involving Talansky.

According to documents in a suit brought by Talansky, Manhattan investment banker Frederick Schulman filed a complaint to police in 2000 after he said Talansky had waged "a vicious and relentless campaign of threats, intimidation, coercion, harassment, extortion and physical violence against me."

Schulman's attorney, Sheldon Gopstein, said Talansky had sent "a group of goons" to collect money he said Schulman owed him.

Talansky said in the suit that he sold to a third party the right to collect on a bounced $25,000 check written to him by Schulman. He acknowledged being questioned by police but said he explained the situation to their satisfaction. The suit was ultimately settled.

Richard Penzer, a developer from Lawrence, also was once sued by Talansky, who charged defamation stemming from a letter Penzer sent to Talansky's superior at Shaare Zedek Medical Center in 1994.

In the letter, Penzer said Talansky "sent three men armed with guns" who "attempted to break into my house" to collect money that Talansky said Penzer owed him.

Penzer's letter led hospital officials to ask Talansky to resign, which he did in 1994. In his resignation letter, Talansky maintained he was "entirely innocent and the accusation is a complete fabrication." Penzer paid Talansky $60,000 in a settlement of the defamation suit.

In another pending Nassau State Supreme Court action, Talansky is suing his business associates in Kooltech for trying to cut him out of any involvement or control in the company. The partners countersued him for breaching his fiduciary duties.

Talansky's attorney in the suit, Anthony P. Marchesi, of Garden City, did not return calls for comment.

Great Neck said...


Image 45 of 81 Lisa Cohen of Great Neck charged with DWI. Nassau police arrested 109 suspected drunken drivers this holiday weekend. (NCPD, Newsday / May 27, 2008)

Desperate for a Shidduch said...


lisa f cohen- youre hot! - m4w

Reply to: pers-698155578@craigslist.org
Date: 2008-05-28, 10:53AM EDT

i saw your picture on the nassau police website. so youre fun and gorgeous, huh? lets turn this negative into a positive. please write back.

Belsky will demonstrate Hazmonos in Sign Language said...


Chabad And The Orthodox Union to Host Shabbaton for the Deaf

Menachem Lubinsky said...

The anti-Semite police are picking on Vered because she's Israeli. Yudi Kolko is also very upset that the Polaroid exhibit of gay men was disturbed.


It was chaos in the Hamptons as cops crashed an A-list Memorial Day weekend gala, dragging the owner of a tony art gallery to jail for serving drinks without a license.

Longtime gallery owner and East Hampton fixture Ruth Vered was hauled off in handcuffs after she refused to stop serving drinks Saturday evening - and then balked at cops' orders to follow them.

"People were screaming, 'Leave her alone,'" Vered told the Daily News Sunday. "It's disgraceful."

She dismissed the East End cops as big-muscled toughs with too much time on their hands.

"I told them I've been doing this since before they were born," fumed Vered, 67. "They have some nerve."

She was taken away from the wine-and-cheese shindig in front of her granddaughter and the 200 elbow-rubbing fashionistas and socialites gathered at Vered Gallery for the opening of an exhibit by celebrity photographer Steven Klein.

East Hampton Mayor Paul Rickenbach said cops were just enforcing state alcohol rules.

"It's standard operating procedure for the police," Rickenbach said. "It's not something that's new and out of the blue at all."

The beach town brouhaha began as bold-face names like leggy blond Kelly Killoren Bensimon and Kelly Klein, Calvin Klein's ex-wife, sipped white wine and cocktails while they scanned the sexy shots.

The exhibit includes photos of Madonna, Justin Timberlake, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. There were also Polaroids of gay men in various sexual poses.

Just before 8 p.m., two police officers arrived and told Vered to stop serving drinks. When she refused, they told her she would have to come with them to the police station.

"I said I'm not going anywhere," said Vered, who recalled telling them she would only discuss the issue with a higher-ranking police official.

"There were about eight of them with big muscles."

Moments later, up to nine police cars and more than a dozen officers descended on the gallery and arrested Vered. Then they carted out crates of fancy Champagne, wine and Grey Goose vodka.

Vered was identified by cops as Ruth Kalb, but she told The News she prefers using only a single name, Vered.

She blasted the small-town cops for having too little work.

"They really have nothing to do so they pick on me - it's harassment," she said. "You'd think someone was murdered."

Gallery customers said the police response was totally out of proportion to any problem caused by the reception.

"There were about nine cops there for one woman," said Yudi Kolko of Lakewood, NJ. "It seemed like a gross overreaction."

Vered was fingerprinted, photographed and handcuffed to a bench for more than two hours at the East Hampton Village police station before being given a summons for serving liquor without a license. She has a June 25 court date.

Cops didn't return calls for comment.

But the mayor insisted they did everything by the book.

"It's unfortunate the atmosphere was the way it was, but the police operated in a professional manner," Rickenbach said.

Cops also shut down a reception at the neighboring Walk Tall Gallery.

Witnesses said cops confiscated bottles of wine as a woman who worked at Walk Tall began to shake and cry in fear when she was handed a summons.

"It was like a drug bust," said Wendy Wachtel, owner of Walk Tall.

North American Shidduch Initiative said...

A shidduch for Lisa Cohen will still be eligible for compensation from our fund.

Our sole requirement is:

The Fund's goal is to encourage shidduchim with a smaller age difference by providing an incentive of $750 to shadchanim of couples who are within two years of age of each other. Shadchanim of couples in which the chosson and kallah are less than a year apart would receive $1250. A shadchan of a couple in which the girl is at least three months older than the boy would receive $2000.

Mamzerim are also eligible as long as they meet the demanding criteria.

Trial marriages are also eligible, providing that the claims are submitted within 30 days after the chassuna.

This is to help assure that shadchanim inappropriate shidduchim get married and not break up prior to the chuppah.

Since the inception of our amazing initiative 200 shidduchim were made (some apprpropriate and some not). This is close to $200,000 in claims. We are proud to say that we have paid out $60,000 of those claims. If anyone would like to contribute to our worthy cause please do.

Malkie said...

Let me start by introducing myself. My name is Malkie. I'm 26, married for five years and I have a beautiful two year old daughter. My husband is a great guy. I truly love him and our family. We have no serious financial worries (although we haven't started paying tuition yet) and our health is fine.

So, what's the problem?

Well, the problem is this... I just don't feel any... connection...to yiddishkeit anymore. Where once upon a time I had a feeling of closeness to God and a joy in keeping the mitzvos, I no longer have this today.

What led to this yeridah? I honestly can’t say for sure. It started shortly after the birth of our daughter. It’s not like one day I was “gung ho” on the mitzvos and the next day I was “who cares?” It’s been a gradual process, slowly building up from day to day.

I look at the frum community and see all the troubles that abound.

Rabbeim accused of horrible crimes against children.

Horrible attitudes that I see from my friends and neighbors toward those who aren’t Jewish (or are from “wrong” frum circles).

Seemingly more and more bizarre rulings from rabbanim..........

Mark Kalb said...


The ex-husband of busted Hamptons gallery owner Ruth Vered says she was no paratrooper - and he is no chicken.

Firing back at the East End's arty enfant terrible, Mark Kalb Tuesday accused Vered of fibbing about their breakup more than 30 years ago and her Israeli Army credentials.

"She was a paratrooper like I'm a camel," said Kalb, 66, of Philadelphia. "She was in the tank brigade and she was a clerk-typist."

The flap was the latest installment in the saga that began when local cops cuffed and fingerprinted Vered on Saturday night for serving alcohol at her East Hampton gallery without a permit.

Admitting there's no love lost between them, Kalb joked that he put Vered's Page 1 photo to good use in his office.

"I hung the pictures on the wall," he said. "I might throw darts at her."

Kalb heaped scorn on Vered's claim that she divorced him because he refused to serve in the Israeli military. He insists he found another girlfriend.

"Whatever she wants to say, it's okay," Kalb said. "I didn't really want to be in the army, that's true, but that's not why we got divorced."

Vered, 67, conceded yesterday she was not in the Israeli paratrooper unit, but insisted she did jump from planes.

"He doesn't know everything about my life," she said.

The tough-as-nails art dealer also back-pedaled a bit on her claim a day earlier that she divorced Kalb because he was a "chicken."

"It wasn't [the only] reason, it's true," she said. "It doesn't matter. It was 35 years ago and it has nothing to do with this story."

Stung by the weekend fracas, East Hampton's police chief warned businesses to get permits for events where drinks will be served. Police Chief Jerry Larsen said cops tried to be reasonable with Vered, but she escalated the situation.

Anonymous said...

Will the rosh yeshiva in Far Rockaway take action against the rebbe who recently used a racial slur to refer to the son of a giyores who was a Cushi? Or is it only the internet that concerns him?

Sir Viver said...

Mondrowitz must pay for jis sins. Even if it meens grown and grey rabbis will have wet crotches for a year straight

Anonymous said...

Any news on the Issac Hirsch court hearing this week?
Can LVF or Steve update on the mondrowitz case and what goes down on Thursday

different perspective said...

Malkie, if you are real, I would like you to know that there are wholesome wonderful Frum Jews and Rabanim out there. You may feel better about Judaism and the Frum if you move out of NY. That may be difficult on many levels. Until then, read the blogs of Ezzie, Chana, Modern Uberdox. Try to get away from blogs like these while you are in this state. I know these blogs serve a purpose. But they can push you over the edge to a darker place than you need to be. The blogs I mention will link to other more positive blogs. Judaism and Orthodoxy is rich with beauty and value. Don't throw the baby out with the bathwater even if it is only in your head.

Ahavah said...

Well, Malkie:

It's easy to confuse your feelings for the corrupt, powermongering, irresponsible Rabbinate with your feelings for Hashem. After all, they have clearly usurped His authority for themselves and have become control freaks in the process. But it might help to remember that in reality, they don't represent Him. They only represent themselves. And it's ugly and scary to look at them and the things they have done to us and our communities - but do you really think that's what Hashem wants? Is Hashem really so incompetent? Of course not. But they are. So if you're so inclined, work on separating them from Him in your mind. They're an embarrassment to Him, too, you know - not to mention all that chillul Hashem can't possibly be making Him happy, now can it? Just rest assured that He will judge and punish them for every bit of mismanagement and perversion and disgrace that they have brought upon themselves and us and Him. It might be painful, LOL, but think outside their box - because truly, He's not in there.

LVF said...

sholom Rubashkin is goin down, the rest of them to follow shortly!


"UOJ" - "The Un-Orthodox Jew" said...

From The Jewish Week in part.

Of course nobody cares if the food they eat may not be kosher... BUNGALOW TIME!


.....And at Glatt Mart, a kosher supermarket and butcher in Flatbush, Brooklyn, which sells some 75,000 pounds of meat monthly and claims to be the largest purveyor of kosher meat in the world, owner Dov Bauman said “I have not had one person ask me about which meat is Rubashkin’s.

“A lot of people ask me if I have inside information about what happened” in Postville, he said. But that’s not changing the way his customers shop. “People are aware that something happened at Rubashkin. But no one says they don’t want a product because it’s Rubashkin.”

Dr. Bungalow Putz Neuhoff said...

Shame on UOJ for mocking the choshuve Rubashkin-supporting chavrei Bungalow, berosham Shelly Silver, the star of the Bungalow Baseball League.


Orthodox Bungalow Baseball League, a devout collection of rabble-rousers who have spent three decades tearing up the moderately manicured softball diamonds that pock the Catskill Mountains.

Since 1977, the Orthodox league has been providing a healthful escape for thousands of men who might otherwise spend Sundays inside cramped bungalows, their wives threatening them with the prospect of laundry-folding.

There are six divisions, and the winner in each is rewarded with a classy-looking trophy, and most important, bragging rights during the long off-season months, when the players return to their winter homes, most in Brooklyn, Staten Island or the Five Towns of Long Island.

Among the league’s best-known veterans is Sheldon Silver, speaker of the State Assembly, whose injuries recently forced him into an early retirement (from baseball, not politics).

Jerry Schreck said...


As founder of the Bungalow Putz Baseball League and a big shot at the OU, I second Neuhoff's motion in support of Shelly Silver and Rubashkin Fressers.

Kashrus Insider said...

The OU is going along with this cover up.


Aaron Rubashkin, founder and owner of the company, issued a statement that appeared to announce that he had fired his son, Sholom Rubashkin, as the acting chief executive officer. The statement, titled “AgriProcessors Announces Leadership Change,” said that Aaron Rubashkin “announced today that the company will hire a new chief executive officer” to run the country’s largest kosher meat producer.

Another member of the Rubashkin family, a grandson of the founder also named Sholom Rubashkin, is a nephew of the Sholom Rubashkin in the announcement. In an interview Tuesday with The Jewish Week, he said that his uncle “wasn’t let go. He was the head of accounting and purchasing, and was referred to as the CEO, but to say he was let go is very inappropriate.”

Young Sholom Rubashkin said that he had no knowledge of some of the allegations detailed by the federal government in its affidavit for the search warrant that led to the arrests, and that others — including that a methamphetamine lab was operating in the plant and that a supervisor blindfolded and beat an employee — “are ridiculous.”

“Do you think we’re slave drivers over here?” he asked. He finds the boycotting campaigns “hypercritical,” he said, because they are based on allegations rather than fact.

(This Rubashkin Spinster thinks FBI tape recordings are not facts)

Kashrus Insider said...

There is a big movement afoot here to force independent inspections by outside rabbis and to have a consulting firm sit there for at least a week. If the OU knew who is involved in these discussions, they would break a collective sweat.

It is still not enough to ensure that Rubashkin will never again package treif as Bais Yosef Glatt, but if the money is raised, it will put a stop to the majority of his stunts.


Orthodox organizations and individual rabbis have begun to join the fray.

Orthodox Rabbi Shmuel Herzfeld, spiritual leader of Ohev Sholom of Washington, D.C., the National Synagogue, called for the Vaad Harabonim of Washington to take appropriate action.

In a letter to the Vaad, Herzfeld urged the Vaad to "temporarily suspend Rubashkin's meat in the stores and caterers that it supervises."

Herzfeld said aside from the alleged ethical violations, he is concerned whether the meat at the plant was kosher in light of recent allegations which include production of the drug crystal meth at the plant, and is calling for an independent investigation.

"I would like someone to go down there, that is not directly involved, someone independent, who has stature, courage and the authority to verify for us what is going on," said Herzfeld. Though other Orthodox rabbis have been slow to react publicly, Herzfeld said that several have voiced their concern in private conversations.

Lubinsky Parade of Lies said...


"Pressure (from non-Orthodox) didn't seem to deter them in the past," said Lubinsky. "These calls were not from the core consumer, and in the past sales kept going up.

(Lubinsky thinks he can dance around the fact that non-Orthodox are the majority in America by a long shot and buy most of Rubashkin's "kosher labels)

"They (Rubashkin) are an extremely important part of the kosher food industry, and the hard core consumer doesn't want to damage the potential of supply," said Lubinsky. "They feel Rubashkin has been more a victim than anything else, and that this is a left wing gang up."

(Shades of a vast Hillary Clinton conspiracy)

Avrom Pollak, president of Star-K, a Baltimore based kosher certification agency, said the recent allegations into Agriprocessors is having a widespread effect, that extends beyond the Jewish world.

Rubashkin has called previous allegations against the company anti-Semitic.

"I don't know whether the Rubashkins are guilty, but this has been going on for years, and certainly these issues should have been cleared up long time ago," said Pollak. "To claim it is anti-Semitism is ridiculous actually."

Shmarya said...

Let's put this in English:

The OU was forced by public outrage to say that it would remove its supervision from Agriprocessors if the company's management was indicted and charged with felony counts related to the ICE immigration raid and the related extortion, child labor and RICO allegations.
The OU does not want to remove its supervision.
Aaron Rubashkin and his family do not want the OU to remove its supervision.
Solution? Have Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin "replaced" as CEO.
Of course, there's a hook to this the OU and the Rubashkins hope you'll miss – Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin is also Agriprocessors Vice President and holds other corporate offices, as well.
In other words, Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin "steps down" as CEO (but retains his control behind the scenes), the OU leaves on its supervision, and everybody is happy ever after.

If this is indeed what transpires, the OU must be made to pay a very steep price – a price at least as steep as it paid in the Baruch Lanner affair.

Nothing less than the ouster of Rabbi Menachem Genack and the OU's entire kashrut and lay leadership should be acceptable.

Evading Responsibility said...


Responding to the boycott efforts, AgriProcessors spokesman Menachem Lubinsky said: “Company officials are saying at this point give us our day in court before you do anything. Nobody’s been charged or indicted. They’re hoping not to be charged ... Some say with new management they may avoid it.”

("Some" = Rabbi Genack?)

Indications that Glatt Mart & the Baumanns are Lying said...

One blog commenter says he called Baumann personally to ask if any of his meat is Rubashkin.

I also know the fellow whose story was posted in the winter here & on R' Yudel Shain's blog about the ruckuss he caused inside Glatt Mart. He was told they don't sell any Rubashkin because it's poorer quality than the Baltimore meat. About 30 seconds later he saw them slicing a Rubashkin pastrami. When he confronted them, they admitted they do in fact use that & other Rubashkin product too, like for the deli kugel. They started giving him a propaganda speech that all the stories about Rubashkin are "lies made up by the union." He left a large order they just packed for him and went to shop again elsewhere.

Maybe that particular Baumann was not involved but Glatt Mart has had their share of incidents.

Aron Twerski said...

Dov Bauman is an honorable pastrami peddler.

Most Rabbonim Today are Cowards said...

The gezeireh from R' Leizer Silver and fellow gedolei America from 70 years ago is not just on Rubashkin & the OU to not have such a set up. The issur is worded so that these greedy fleish geshefts should not sell it and gluttonous consumers should not fress it.

Glatt Mardi Gras said...

Most of the public doesn't know either that there was a problem in the slaughterhouse with the Baltimore meat years ago. It was fixed after pressure from independent rabbis who found out about it. But because of various other shenanigans that were institutional with Heinemann, Rabbi Shain's followers and many others don't touch the stuff even today.

Joe Putz said...

Lubinsky should get together with Neuhoff. The Bungalow Putz's favorite target after UOJ, the modern orthodox, are leading the main Rubashkin boycott.

So let's see ..Lubinsky lies through his teeth that Conservative, Reform, unaffiliated and modern orthodox are not significant Rubashkin customers in the least bit. Most chassidim haven't eaten Rubashkin since day one anyhow. So that means that the yeshiva crowd must be the only group consuming Rubashkin's tens of millions of dollars of meat.

I suggest someone write a letter to Lubinsky's non-Jewish bosses at Diversified who own Kosher Fest and let them know what a fraud he is.

UOJ? Anyone?

Glatt Fart Ave M said...

Hamayvin yovin about the problems with the meat hooks years ago. But the agents who cover up for us, deny there was even a problem to fix.

Do you think the OU & Rubashkin have the monopoly on cover ups?

"UOJ" - "The Un-Orthodox Jew" said...

If Richard Nixon was alive, he would tell you that his presidency would have somehow survived - if not for the cover-up!

He (should) would have done a mea culpa - clap al chet - and in a few days or weeks it would have been over. The same with Clinton.

The cover-ups here will be the undoing of the OU and Rubashkin.

Ask Lipa Margulies what he would have done with the Kolko affair - if he could have done it over.

Every idiot Jew thinks they're smarter than the other idiot Jew!

Dov Bear On Agriprocessors said...

This is another example of tribalism.

It's Kolko all over again. As the pile of evidence against that reprehensible pedophile was growing higher and higher we heard from men who dress like him, and from men who talk like him, who all urged us to to ignore the facts, who told us the case against Kolko was the work of the Jew-hating media. They were wrong, but they helped a monster escape justice.

Now the Lubovs at Agriprocessors are on the hot seat, so of course the Lubovs at Circus Tent are running interference. Don't even consider the evidence, they say. Ignore the facts. There's nothing to see here. After all the arguments are being made by a Modern Orthodox Rabbi.

Houston, Rubashkin's got a Problem said...


Claudia Avalos and her family might soon become vegetarians — but not exactly by choice.

The genesis of their dietary dilemma can be traced to an unlikely place: Postville, Iowa. In this northeastern Iowa town, federal immigration authorities raided and jailed nearly 400 undocumented workers two weeks ago at Agriprocessors Inc., the nation's largest kosher meat and poultry plant.

The plant quickly reopened to slower production, and the subsequent trickledown impact was felt immediately throughout the country. Consumers and businesses, Jews and non-Jews alike, including those in Houston, now worry about a shortage of kosher meat and rising prices. The raid, hailed by officials as the largest in U.S. history, was, to some, another example of the dependence of the U.S. labor force on undocumented workers.

On Wednesday, Avalos experienced this dynamic of economics firsthand.

She was shopping at Belden's grocery in Meyerland for kosher meat and poultry, only after finding none at the nearby H-E-B, where she usually buys it.

''We came to stock up," she said. ''If they ran out of kosher meat, we would just have vegetables."

Avalos said her family eats kosher because of the quality and their Jewish faith. She also thinks it's healthier.

Stores and restaurants that specialize in kosher products are mostly found in the Meyerland area. David Martinez, store director at Houston's only kosher H-E-B, said Agriprocessors was the store's supplier, and that they would be without kosher meat until they could find another.

Menachem Lubinsky, editor in chief of koshertoday.com, doesn't expect increases in kosher food prices or a need for hoarding.

"Pending any legal action from the federal government (against Agriprocessors, Inc.), it appears that we're OK," Lubinsky said.

However, Shelley Rappaport, manager of kosher Houston caterer Nosher, ordered meat the day after the raid, and prices had gone up, she said. Susan Goldstein, owner of Suzie's Grill, said kosher meat now costs twice as much as before.

"It's (difficult) for me to get meat, and it's a problem for customers who have to pay the price," she said.

Goldstein has plenty of meat this week and remains hopeful, despite being unsure about her future shipments. She said she'll persist, "Rubashkin or no Rubashkin," referencing the family that owns Agriprocessors.

Belden's store director Darryl Ames said they were well-stocked after buying from other manufacturers after the raid. Alvin Mata, co-manager of the Rice Epicurean on West Holcombe, said they were low after the raid but were fine now.

Zev Comer, a mashgiac, or kosher supervisor, said kosher price increases would greatly affect the consumer.

"Friday night through Saturday night is the sabbath. People have big sabbath meals and visit," he said. "Tradition calls for meat because it's a bigger meal, more festive, and some people feel very strongly that meat should be included."

Lee Payne, a sales representative for food distributor Ben E. Keith Co., said that employers hiring undocumented workers can face consequences and impact other parts of the U.S. food industry, noting the April raids of five Pilgrim's Pride poultry plants that netted about 300 illegal immigrants.

"There are a lot of illegal immigrants here working," he said. "Everyone's trying to reduce costs by hiring people with somewhat questionable backgrounds. It's going to cause ripples in the system."

Even with big events on her schedule, Goldstein said she and others would survive.

"Right now I'm worried. I'd be lying to you if I said I wasn't," she said.

Menachem Lubinsky said...

"Right now I'm worried. I'd be lying to you if I said I wasn't," she said."

Ah, get that pitchfork out of your tuchess & lighten up.

A little fibbing never hurt anyone.

Rubashkin = Hardened Criminal said...

The Jewish Telegraphic Agency is reporting that Rubashkin is back to his old tricks of rehiring the illegals but this time paying them cash so there is no paper trail.

Shmarya is getting reports that the Putz is even placing Spanish language ads in Guatemalan newspapers!

Contact Information for Lubinsky's Superiors said...

Diversified Business Communications
P.O. Box 7437
Portland, ME 04112-7437
United States
Phone: (207) 842-5504
Fax: (207) 842-5505

This guy is the head of the KosherFest division:

Brian Randall
Vice President
Kosherfest Show Director
(207) 842-5592

Even higher up the chain of command:

Nancy Hasselback
President and CEO

Terry Baldwin
Vice President, Enterprise Services, CIO

Vicki Hennin
Vice President, Strategic Marketing & Business Intelligence

Tom Tomczyk
Vice President, Business Development

Phil Collins said...

It's a no fun bein' an illegal alien!

Do the math. If Rubashkin can't hire Guatemalans who take half the pay of even Mexicans, he can't undercut Alle and Hebrew National on price.

If the corrupt prick goes legal he has no more advantage.

Anonymous said...

I assume we can count on Steve & others to write eloquent letters to DBC exposing Lubinsky for the vile fraud that he is.

Glatt a la Farte on 18th Ave said...

Ok, we have a soft spot for Gerrer chassidim, even if they are clean shaven. But who is ever going to hire Lubinsky as a PR shill again after he acted like such a transparent putz for Rubashkin?

shmarya says said...

Rabbi Menachem Genack of the OU has admitted what many of us thought all along – the "ouster" of Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin as Agriprocessors CEO is…

…nothing more than a ploy to help the OU leave its mark on Agri products while at the same time telling its irate consumers it has done its job.

The JTA reports:

…The situation has generated outrage from certain quarters of the Jewish world, with some calling for a boycott of Agriprocessors' products.

Genack has said that if criminal charges are brought against the company, the OU would have to remove its supervision. Bringing in new management, Genack acknowledged, is an effort to head off that possibility.

"We don't want to get to that stage, frankly," Genack told JTA. "This is an important supplier. We want the company to succeed."

Genack said that if Rubashkin is subsequently indicted, the OU wouldn't necessarily have a problem continuing to supervise the company.

"I would think that if there's new management, completely independent management, why would we withdraw supervision? Because of a history?" Genack said. "That wouldn't make sense."

In other words, even though every other Rubashkin remains in place and even though Aaron Rubashkin – long directly involved in recruiting illegal workers and in other crimes – remains as President and Sholom M. Rubashkin remains as Vice President, the OU will leave its supervision on Rubashkin products.

This type of slippery parsing of language (and ethics and morality, for that matter) should make clear to all that the OU is not a kosher supervision to be trusted.

Those of you boycotting Rubashkin should consider expanding that boycott to include all OU-supervised products.

steve said...

We should all be bombarding the OU with letters demanding that they pull the plug on Rubashkin, effective immediately. They just need to write a letter similar to the KAJ with no other explanation necessary. Please mention the 1955 OU letter which is posted on Rav Yudel's blog. We will then see how much longer Weissmandel can keep his fraud of a hashgacha going. Also vote "yes" on the Jewish Press website poll which asks "should a company's kashruth supervision be removed if it is found to have violated laws and ethical standards having nothing to do with kashruth?"

OU Contact Info:

Orthodox Union Offices
National Headquarters

Eleven Broadway
New York, NY 10004
Fax 212-564-9058

e-mail: info@ou.org

The only thing the OU cares about is money. If they fear a community wide backlash against them, and that their fundraising will suffer, they will surely forfeit the licensing fee that they are collecting from Rubashkin.

My prediction is that the whole Rubashkin operation will either be sold or shut down by Rosh Hashana. Weissmandel, Strasser and Lubinsky will go down with them. Genack, Belsky and the OU gang can save themselves by withdrawing now (hibadlu mitoch haedah) or face the same consequences.

steve said...

Genack: We will continue to certify Rubashkin even if indicted


The Orthodox Union had urged the country's largest kosher slaughterhouse to replace CEO Sholom Rubashkin.

Rabbi Menachem Genack, who heads the OU's kosher supervision department, confirmed a report last week in the Long Island, N.Y.-based Jewish Star newspaper saying he had urged Agriprocessors to seek new management.

The company announced May 23 that it would replace Rubashkin following a massive federal immigration raid two weeks earlier on the company's plant in Postville, Iowa, and subsequent allegations of underage workers, sexual harassment and other claims of worker mistreatment.

The situation has generated outrage from certain quarters of the Jewish world, with some calling for a boycott of Agriprocessors' products.

Genack has said that if criminal charges are brought against the company, the OU would have to remove its supervision. Bringing in new management, Genack acknowledged, is an effort to head off that possibility.

"We don't want to get to that stage, frankly," Genack told JTA. "This is an important supplier. We want the company to succeed."

Genack said that if Rubashkin is subsequently indicted, the OU wouldn't necessarily have a problem continuing to supervise the company.

"I would think that if there's new management, completely independent management, why would we withdraw supervision? Because of a history?" Genack said. "That wouldn't make sense."

LVF said...

My prediction is that the whole Rubashkin operation will either be sold or shut down by Rosh Hashana. Weissmandel, Strasser and Lubinsky will go down with them.

Wow steve,Amen.

Boruch said...

Getting back to the topic. If the Rabbonim can't treat each other with respect why should they expect respect from the rest of us. When Rabbonim denigrate the principles that Moshe Rabbeinu taught from Hashem's mouth, why would the rest of us not do so. It used to be that ehrliche personalities with scholarship and fearlessness would lead a kehillah. You would go along or go. The standards would be set so that no one would be excluded. Rabbinic tales abound where a Rov wouldn't take a case or except payment if there was a hava minah that the baalei din weren't honest. Rabbonim would bend over backwards to find heterim to aid the poor.
When you taught that no is the only answer, not just an answer, then you will have people using it against you. This doesn't mean that everything has to be mutar. Rabbinus is not a popularity contest. Being a Rov is not about how well you sing or your droshes or your aftershave.
They have no respect for each other. They have no respect for Hashem. They don't respect themselves. And it's consistent not an aberration or a one-off, that this respect is lacking.
Is there a Brisker Rov, a Rav Chaim Ozer, a Satmar Rov, a Bobover Rov out there who commands respect? No, unfortunately there are not. It was once asked, who will be the teachers, the Rebbes, of the next generation? Why ask this question? It is now apparent that the lack of respect was already leaking into our society.
We Jews have lost our moral compass. We have tutzach's leading the morality brigade. We have janitors teaching our children. We have themes for our simchas. We have become the goyim that Hashem commanded to separate ourselves from and not to follow in their ways.
I think that all mosdos and yeshivahs should follow the template that the Yeshivah in Radin followed for raising funds, especially the dinners. I think that all Rebbes should have to take a shiur in Mesillas Yesharim. I think that all high school female lemudei kodesh teachers should be brutally honest about marriage. I think that all yeshivah bochurim should not be in dorms, but at home where possible. I think that we shouldn't be telling ourselves that this is only a small number of people and I don't have to worry about myself and mine - Korach's band was 250 and the erev rav was a couple of thousand; they wielded too much influence on Klall Yisroel in a negative fashion. Better to look at the mesiras nefesh of Moshe, Yisro, and Billam (yeah him) and those individuals who had a positive effect on Klall Yisroel. When we demand more of ourselves and ask our role models to model the behavior we want to follow, they will.

Anonymous said...

whats with shea fishman

Stop Rubashkin, Belsky & the OU said...


The petition

Do we really answer to a higher authority?

On May 12, 2008, 389 illegal immigrant workers were detained by federal officials at the AgriProcessors plant in Postville, Iowa, in the largest enforcement action ever carried out by immigration officials at a workplace. As of May 23, 260 of those workers were sentenced for working at the meatpacking plant for working under false documents. Allegations against the company filed in affidavits by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials also include the physical abuse of workers, payment of wages well below minimum wage and the production of methamphetamines at a lab located at the plant. Other allegations by workers include child labor and sexual abuse. In addition, AgriProcessors has been investigated and cited in the past for environmental and animal cruelty claims. AgriProcessors is the largest kosher meatpacking company in the United States, producing an estimated 60% of all kosher meat in the U.S. and 40% of all kosher poultry. AgriProcessors products are sold under many different brand names, including Rubashkin's and Aaron's Best, as well as in butcher shops and kosher markets without any brand name. Chances are, if you have bought kosher meat, then you have eaten meat produced by AgriProcessors.

We, the undersigned, are shocked and dismayed at the conditions and situation at the AgriProcessors plant in Postville, Iowa and at the response (or lack thereof) of the Orthodox Union (OU), which certifies AgriProcessors' meat as kosher. The entire episode has brought shame on the Orthodox community.

We find it unacceptable that human beings and animals are mistreated to provide us with our kosher food and that, as Rabbi Menachem Genack, head of the OU's kashrut certification division has stated, as long as the slaughter of animals is done in accordance with Jewish law, the OU will not consider terminating their kosher certification of a corporation's products unless the corporation itself is convicted of crimes. The OU is paid for its certification by the very companies it is certifying, an inherent conflict of interest that we believe has clouded the OU's judgment in this case.

We believe that the imprimatur of kosher certification should not be based merely on the type of animal and the manner of slaughter but the overall manner with which a corporation treats its animals, employees and customers.
The events and allegations going back years at AgriProcessors' plants raise many troubling questions, including: Where were the OU's mashgichim (kosher supervisors) at the Postville plant? Either the mashgichim were not present, which calls into question the basic kashrut supervision of the plant, or they were present and turned a blind eye to the abuses of animals and human beings which calls into question their basic humanity and ability to be trusted with such an important responsibility as assuring the kashrut of our kosher meat supply.

While as a legal matter individuals and corporations are innocent until proven guilty, we as citizens and consumers are not required to give such presumption of innocence. We believe that the OU should suspend their certification of AgriProcessors' meat and poultry pending the outcome of the government and OU investigation into the company's business practices.

Accordingly, we demand that:

1. All local butchers and supermarkets immediately cease carrying any of AgriProcessors' products and that all synagogues refuse to allow caterers who use AgriProcessors' products to make use of the synagogues' facilities. The fact the AgriProcessors' various plants around the world, including in countries with less stringent government regulations than in the United States, provide an estimated 60% of the kosher meat and 40% of the kosher poultry should not factor into this decision one iota.

2. Menachem Genack immediately step down as head of the OU's kosher certification division and that the OU immediately initiate a review of all AgriProcessors plants and OU's own internal procedure for kosher certification. The OU makes a lot of money certifying AgriProcessors' products and must go the extra mile to avoid any appearance of a conflict of interest in this situation. The failure of the OU's mashgichim to notice or report the activities at the Postville plant indicates a failure of leadership at the top of the OU's kashrut division that can only be remedied by a change of leadership.

3. All kosher certification agencies adopt rules and regulations requiring humane treatment of animals and employees as a precondition to obtaining kosher certification for any products.

As the old saying goes, you are what you eat. Now that we know what goes on at AgriProcessors' plants, if we continue to eat their products, what does that make us?

Please send this petition or a link to this website to anyone you know who may be interested in signing and also print a copy and give it to your local kosher market and synagogue. Through our actions we can send a signal to our so-called leadership that we will not stand for such abuses any longer.

Sign the petition

Make these 21 signatures 21,000 said...


1 David Adelsberg
2 Eric Creizman
3 Jason Snyder
4 Lili Chen Thank you for putting this petition up. Agriprocessors and the OU are shandas to the Jewish community.
5 Steven Feldman
6 John K. Diamond
7 Catherine Manna As one family that is practicing Orthodox judaism, this is the very reason for our my change and becomming Vegitarian/vegan! I had no Idea !!! and it is morally, wrong against all of what Torah and Hashem stands for!! Love , goodness, kindness and compassion!! These practices, are definitly not Gods ways! No way!! I choose to be on Gods side I choose Compassion, I choose Kindness, I choose to life!! This indeed was the biggest wake up call we have witnessed today!! May it be our finall call! God willing Baruch Hashem C
8 Shemirah Brachah
9 Claudia Gaspar Orthodox Judaism must face a renewal immediately and Chabad rabbis be investigated in depth
10 Lionel Friedberg
11 Rabbi Elchanan Weinbach
12 arthur poletti What will everyone do when meat is removed from the food chain?
13 Jampa Williams AgriProcessors have shamed themselves and the Jewish people, and they have betrayed the most essential values of Judaism and human decency. I am outraged and appalled. Such abuses must cease, immediately!
14 Rina Deych, RN As long as animals are raised in misery on factory farms and brutally tortured to death at abominations like AgriProcessors, the only Kosher diet is a plant-based one. Vegan diets are better for human health, the planet, and, of course, the animals.
15 ruth
16 Sherri G. White I am not Jewish, but I am a citizen of Postville, Iowa, and have heard first hand about some of the attrocities that have occurred at Agri. I take pleasure in signing this petition! I surely hope the Rubashkins can be stopped-
17 David Siegel
18 Daniel Ebel The OU can plain kiss my butt!
19 Paula Lasersohn
20 Anonymous
21 Dena