‘Commentary’ Says Wealth Is a Jewish Value

US Politics
on 28 Comments

I always feel a twinge of guilt when I do it, but I often post news and views about Jewish wealth because I think it is such an important factor in the Jewish presence in American life. The guilt comes from the strong Jewish feeling I have that I might be endangering my people or playing into ancient stereotypes. I push this feeling down because a, I’m in my 50s and am sick of censoring recurrent ideas in my thinking, b, the feeling is anti-journalistic and c, it seems pretty selfish to me to worry about possible (and unlikely) persecution of one’s own people when we are talking about wars in the Middle East that have produced real and present suffering on a tremendous scale…

Anyway, I noticed the following in David Hazony’s attack on Rabbi Heschel in Commentary:

Heschel wound up advancing naïve or
even harmful public positions, frequently echoing the most worn clichés
of the universalist Left.

One example concerns his inveterate suspicion of well-earned wealth,
a suspicion ungrounded in Jewish sources. Once, in a classroom
discussion about whether a disused synagogue in New York City should be
sold to a church or to a bank, he said: “If it is sold to a bank then
it will become a temple of capitalism; if sold to a church, it will
continue to be a temple of God.” Thus did Heschel dismiss the one
institution that had probably done more than any other to preserve
Jewish economic life through centuries of persecution and
deprivation—in favor of an institution whose record with regard to his
people was, to say the least, more complicated.

It appears that Commentary is advancing finance as a Jewish value. I believe Commentary is right. As I remember, Paul Johnson’s book A History of the Jews states that wealth and learning were the highest values in the shtetl. Benjamin Ginsberg has written (in the Fatal Embrace) that Jewish financiers helped create the modern state. Wealthy Jews helped spring my ancestors from Russia, as I once exulted here (based on Gary Dean Best’s amazing book, To Free a People, as well as a biography of Jacob Schiff). Those rich Jews were able to do so because they had access to the White House in the late 1800s. Soon after, some of those same Jewish financiers helped defeat Russia in the Russian-Japanese war by denying Russia war loans; and there is evidence that Jewish financial gifts played a role in Britain’s decision to issue the Balfour Declaration in 1917. It is inarguable that those gifts have played a role in the elevation of neoconservative ideas in the last 10 years, from The New Republic to the American Enterprise Institute to the New York Sun, etc. And of course in the power of the Israel lobby.

The great spiritual challenge to my people, and to Commentary, is what role those gifts ought to play when we are not living "in persecution and deprivation" but are principals in American society.

28 Responses

  1. Richard Witty
    March 5, 2008, 10:16 pm

    Wealth AND learning.

    And where there wasn't wealth, still learning.

    Please live your own life, not through other's eyes.

    And, that means articulating the difference between deeply held values, and reactions.

    I know your family over 4 decades (some decades closer than others). I KNOW your parents, and your personal experience, was NOT that wealth was the primary value.

  2. TR
    March 5, 2008, 11:13 pm

    "[T]here is evidence that Jewish financial gifts played a role in Britain's decision to issue the Balfour Declaration in 1917."

    News to me. What's the evidence?

  3. roy belmont
    March 6, 2008, 12:58 am

    "Soon after, some of those same Jewish financiers helped defeat Russia in the Russian-Japanese war by denying Russia war loans"
    Thus endearing themselves to Russians for some time to come.

  4. Ed.
    March 6, 2008, 1:23 am

    RE Wealthy Jews, Jacob Schiff et al:

    "The most murderous and anti-Christ system the world has ever known (having starved to death or slaughtered about 110 million) was overwhelmingly inspired and birthed by a tiny minority of Jews.

    "The Jewish Encyclopedia (Socialism, p. 418) frankly points out that “Jews have been prominently identified with the modern Socialist movement from its very inception.” “Scientific socialism,” or what we call communism, says the Universal Jewish Encyclopedia in its article on socialism, “originated in the combination of Jewish Messianic feeling with German philosophy…” 1 Marx, of course, was Jewish. But, just as important, Jews at all levels, from high financiers like the Warburgs, Schiffs and Rothschilds to rugged revolutionaries like Trotsky, Kamenev, Sverdlov and Zinoviev, made the success of communism possible.

    "Gary Allen in his book None Dare Call It Conspiracy, pp. 68-75, fingers those key Jewish financiers, especially Max Warburg in Germany and Jacob Schiff in America, who provided millions to arm and subsidize Jewish revolutionaries returning to Russia under the leadership of Trotsky. Schiff, head of the international banking firm of Kuhn, Loeb and Co. (now Chase Manhattan) was particularly influential. Quoting the New York Journal-America of February 3, 1949 out of Allen’s book: “Today it is estimated by Jacob’s grandson, John Schiff, that the old man sank about $20,000,000 for the final triumph of Bolshevism in Russia.” (Remember, that was when a common wage for adult hard labor was several dollars per day.) 2"
    link to truthtellers.org

    I don't view wealthy American Zionist Jews of today much differently than wealthy American Communist Jews of yesterday, only now, instead of playing a parlor game of financing the terror and slaughter of Christians in the Soviet Union and environs, they are playing a parlor game of financing the terror and slaughter of Palestinians, Arabs and Muslims in the Mideast.

    Is allowing ideological Jews to accumulate vast quantities of wealth really such a good idea, particularly given their notion of fun and games?

  5. neocognitism
    March 6, 2008, 2:53 am

    Ed I'm growing a strong dislike of you.

  6. Jim Haygood
    March 6, 2008, 6:54 am

    .

    "It appears that Commentary is advancing finance as a Jewish value. I believe Commentary is right."

    Probably you mean "wealth" rather than finance, which is merely a technique whose bottom rung is the pawn shop. But it's not that simple. Ayn Rand advocated wealth as an important value — but only wealth obtained from actual service to humanity. Not wealth acquired by force or fraud.

    What is troubling about the current crop of Jewish billionaires is their participation in a Lobby which extracts tribute from working people via taxation (force, abetted by persistent fraud in the Jewish-influenced media), to advance their goal of supporting Israel. This is morally repugnant.

    Though Commentary's neocon gangsters twist his statement, Heschel's skeptical remarks about wealth probably reflected his well-founded suspicion that it was not "well-earned."

  7. Michael Blaine
    March 6, 2008, 9:19 am

    Wealth and learning go hand-in-hand.

    Any culture that values them both should be emulated.

    If we all ran our financial lives as the vast majority of Jews do, the "sub-prime" crisis never would have occurred.

    Michael Blaine
    http://www.rudelstamped.blogspot.com

  8. jonathan ekman
    March 6, 2008, 10:23 am

    Karl Marx wrote: "What is the secular basis of
    Judaism? Practical need, self-interest. What is
    the secular cult of the Jew? Haggling. What is
    his secular God? Money."

  9. jonathan ekman
    March 6, 2008, 10:23 am

    Karl Marx wrote: "What is the secular basis of
    Judaism? Practical need, self-interest. What is
    the secular cult of the Jew? Haggling. What is
    his secular God? Money."

  10. Charles Keating
    March 6, 2008, 10:25 am

    RE: "If we all ran our financial lives as the vast majority of Jews do, the "sub-prime" crisis never would have occurred."

    The Los Angeles Times reported that Ameriquest Capital Corp. was the nation's largest sub-prime mortgage lender and that Ameriquest has been alleged, in a series of lawsuits filed against it, to do virtually anything to make sales, including forging documents, hyping customers' creditworthiness, and offering "juiced" mortgages with hidden rates and fees. The company is headed by Chairman Roland E. Arnall, a developer and financier who helped found the Simon Wiesenthal Center in 1977.

  11. Crimson Ghost
    March 6, 2008, 12:05 pm

    Phil

    Your comments on Jewish financial support being behind the 1917 British Balfour Declaration do not go far enough.

    I have seen more thana few reports that a key factor behind the Balfour Declaration was the Jewish financial elite promsie to do all it could to bring America into World War 1 on the side of the British.

    True or false Hitler certainly believed this and it was undoubtedly a key factor behind his venomous hatred of Jews and the resulting holocaust

  12. Ed.
    March 6, 2008, 12:45 pm

    Ed : I'm growing a strong dislike of you.
    Posted by: neocognitism | March 05, 2008 at 11:53 PM

    Either the scales are falling from your eyes (a painful process) or you are bitter that the decades-long (centuries?) Judeofascist scam is finally unraveling and coming to an end.

    Don't blame the messenger; it was really only a matter of time.

    Read Toynbee: "For Toynbee, civilizations were not intangible or unalterable machines but a network of social relationships within the border and therefore subject to both wise and unwise decisions they made. If leaders of the civilization did not appease or shut down the internal proletariat or muster an effective military or diplomatic defense against potential invading outside forces, it would fall."
    link to en.wikipedia.org
    Western civilization is in the process of attempting to regurgitate the Judeofascist invader in order to save itself (which is why this blog and other "anti-Semitic" sites are increasingly popular on the web). Either it will succeed, and go on without the Judeofascist, or it will fail, and we will all be toast (and either living in a Judeofascist-administered, Soviet-like totalitarian hell, or practicing Sharia or speaking Chinese.)

    The key is removal of the Judeofascist rock in the boot (and the various Christian Zionist pebbles that have splintered off) before final infection and gangrene set in.

    At this point, I'm so disgusted that the Silent Generation/Boomer "elite" has allowed the Judeofascist irritant/wound to go ignored for so long, I'm not sure I care one way or the other.

    On Toynbee again: 'When [a civilization] fails to respond to a challenge, it enters its period of decline. Toynbee argued that "Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder."'

    By failing to address the Judeofascist problem, perhaps the Bush/Cheney/Clinton generations, brainwashed by decades of Christian-hating, Judeofascist media rhetoric, are attempting to suicide the West. They appear to be succeeding.

  13. Charles Keating
    March 6, 2008, 2:19 pm

    RE: "[T]here is evidence that Jewish financial gifts played a role in Britain's decision to issue the Balfour Declaration in 1917."-Weiss.

    "News to me. What's the evidence?"–Witty

    The Balfaour Declaration was addressed to Rothschild, one of the
    two key financiers of national goy armies at the time. 1916 was a disastrous year for the Allies. "In the story of the war" wrote Lloyd George,

    The end of 1916 found the fortunes of the Allies at their lowest ebb. In the offensives on the western front we had lost three men for every two of the Germans we had put out of action. Over 300,000 British troops were being immobilized for lack of initiative or equipment or both by the Turks in Egypt and Mesopotamia, and for the same reason nearly 400,000 Allied soldiers were for all purposes interned in the malarial plains around Salonika. Lloyd George, War Memoirs, 1915-1916, p.434.

    By 1916 the resources of J.P. Morgan and Company, the Allies' financial and purchasing agents in the United States, were said to be nearly exhausted by increased Allied demands for American credit. Yale, William, The Near East: A Modern History, (Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan Press. 1958) p. 263.

    There was a stalemate on all fronts. In Britain, France and Germany, hardly a family numbered all its sons among the living. But the British public — and the French, and the German — were not allowed to know the numbers of the dead and wounded. By restricting war correspondents, the American people were not allowed to know the truth either.

    The figures that are known are a recital of horrors. (Half a million Frenchmen were lost in the first four months of war, 1 million lost by the end of 1915, and 5 million by 1918. Who can imagine that the Allies lost 600,000 men in one battle, the Somme, and the British more officers in the first few months than all wars of the previous hundred years put together? Compare: At Stalingrad, in the Second World War, the Wehrmacht had 230,000 men in the field. The German losses at Verdun alone were 325,000 killed or wounded. By this time a soldier in one of the better divisions could count on a maximum of three months' service without being killed or wounded, and the life expectancy for an officer at the front was down to five months in an ordinary regiment and six weeks in a crack one.)

    In a memorandum marked in his own handwriting "Private & Confidential" to Lord Peel and other members of the Royal Commission on Palestine in 1936, James Malcolm wrote:

    I have always been convinced that until the Jewish question was more or less satisfactorily settled there could be no real or permanent peace in the world, and that the solution lay in Palestine. This was one of the two main considerations which impelled me, in the autumn of 1916, to initiate the negotiations which led eventually to the Balfour Declaration and the British Mandate for Palestine. The other, of course, was to bring America into the War.

    For generations Jews and Gentiles alike have assumed in error that the cause of Anti-Semitism was in the main religious. Indeed, the Jews in the hope of obtaining relief from intolerance, engaged in the intensive and subversive propagation of materialistic doctrines productive of ''Liberalism,'' Socialism, and Irreligion, resulting in de-Christianisation. On the other hand, the more materialistic the Gentiles became, the more aware they were subconsciously made of the cause of Anti-Semitism, which at bottom was, and remains to this day, primarily an economic one. A French writer — Vicomte de Poncins — has remarked that in some respects Anti-Semitism is largely a form of self-defence against Jewish economic aggression. In my opinion, however. neither the Jews nor the Gentiles bear the sole responsibility for this.

    As I have already said, I had a part in initiating the negotiations in the early autumn of 1916 between the British and French Governments and the Zionist leaders, which led to the Balfour Declaration and the British Mandate for Palestine.

    The first object, of course, was to enlist the very considerable and necessary influence of the Jews, and especially of the Zionist or Nationalist Jews. to help us bring America into the War at the most critical period of the hostilities. This was publicly acknowledged by Mr. Lloyd George during a recent debate in the House of Commons.

    Our second object was to enable and induce Jews all the world over to envisage constructive work as their proper field, and to take their minds off destnictive and subversive schemes which, owing to their general Sense of insecurity and homelessness. even in the periods preceding the French Revolution, had provoked so much trouble and unrest in various countries, until their ever-increasing violence culminated in the Third International and the Russian Communist Revolution. But to achieve this end it was necessary to promise them Palestine in consideration of their help, as already explained, and not as a mere humanitarian experiment or enterprise, as represented in certain quarters.

    It is no wonder that Weizmann did not refer to Malcolm in his autobiography, and Sokolow privately resented Malcolm "as a stranger in the center of our work," who was "endowed with an esprit of a goyish kind. " Translation from the Russian in Stein, The Balfour Declaration, p. 395.

    Malcolm's belief in the Balfour Declaration as a means of bringing the United States into the war was confirmed by Samuel Landman, secretary to the Zionist leaders Weizmann and Sokolow, and later secretary of the World Zionist Organization. As the only way (which proved so to be) to induce the American President to come into the war was to secure the cooperation of Zionist Jews by promising them Palestine, and thus enlist and mobilize the hitherto unsuspectedly powerful forces of Zionist Jews in America and elsewhere in favour of the Allies on a quid pro quo contract basis. Thus, as will be seen, the Zionists having carried out their part, and greatly helped to bring America in, the Balfour Declaration of 1917 was but the public confirmation of the necessarily secret "gentlemens' " agreement of 1916, made with the previous knowledge, acquiescence, and or approval of the Arabs, and of the British, and of the French and other Allied governments, and not merely a voluntary, altruistic and romantic gesture on the part of Great Britain as certain people either through pardonable ignorance assume or unpardonable ill-will would represent or rather misrepresent … Great Britain, the Jews and Palestine, (London, 1936), pp. 4-5, New Zionist Press.

    Herzl correctly predicted a great war between the Great Powers. His followers organized to be ready for that time to further their ambitions through exploiting the rivalry of the Great Powers. They had a vested interest in promoting that war and in its continuance until Palestine was wrested from Turkey by British soldiers.

    They prepared for the Peace Conference at Versailles although they had no belligerent standing, but they had the weight of the Rothschilds, Bernard Baruch, Felix Frankfurter, and others, which made room for them.

    In the Introduction to The Palestine Diary by Robert John and Sami Hadawi, in two volumes
    Foreword by Arnold Toynbee it is written,

    The establishment in 1948 of a "Jewish state" in Palestine was a phenomenal achievement. In fifty years from the Zionist Congress in Basle, Switzerland, in 1897 — attended by a small number of Jews who represented little more than themselves — the Zionist idea had captivated the vast majority of world Jewry, and enlisted in particular Britain, America and the United Nations to intervene in Palestine in its support by blood and treasure.

    In 1983, seventy-five years after the Balfour Declaration and nearly ninety years after the first Zionist Congress in Switzerland a meeting was held there of the International Conference on the Question of Palestine — but the conferees were not Jews — they were Palestinians — two million are in exile — displaced by Jews!

    Where is the meaning for nonJewish US taxpayers, soldiers, citizens?

  14. Crimson Ghost
    March 6, 2008, 2:32 pm

    Mr Keating

    Thanks for providing the details on the forces behind the Balfour declaration?

    A key factor inciting Hitler and Nazi hatred for the Jews and the resultant holocaust.

  15. Charles Keating
    March 6, 2008, 2:48 pm

    Perhaps if all the U.S. Jews who want to care passionately again about Israel would move to Israel and be passionate, and the question was not about which American President to elect but rather the question of which Israeli Prime Minister – maybe the Israelis would have the correct governmental policies. Staying in America and using its resources does not help Israel in the long run to stand up for what she should. America's policies should be based on what is good for America and not for Israel. Many Israelis look to the American Government as the 'savior' of Israel. Israel needs more Jews there who know who they really should rely on. Please go home American Zionists and criticize from within. Your sons could joined the IDF instead of avoiding the US Military.

  16. Michael Blaine
    March 6, 2008, 3:01 pm

    "Your sons could joined the IDF instead of avoiding the US Military."

    Exactly!

    How man Jewish-American kids are in actually in uniform in Iraq trying to carry out the neocon project there? Precious few, if any at all.

    Michael Blaine
    http://www.rudelystamped.blogspot.com

  17. Jim Haygood
    March 6, 2008, 3:06 pm

    Those interested in reading about the U.S. end of the negotiations leading to the Balfour Declaration need merely Google "Wilson Balfour Declaration." Associate Supreme Court Justice Lous D. Brandeis was an important go-between.

  18. Michael Blaine
    March 6, 2008, 3:07 pm

    I should clarify my comment above: Any American who has supported the invasion and occupation of Iraq who is not willing to send his or her own children to the fight is disgusting.

  19. Ed.
    March 6, 2008, 4:47 pm

    Thank you Charles. I have been looking for evidence that in addition to Jewish Zionists, gentiles hoping to protect Western (Christian) civilization from Judeofascist scheming were behind the creation of Israel.

    The James Malcolm quote: "I have always been convinced that until the Jewish question was more or less satisfactorily settled there could be no real or permanent peace in the world, and that the solution lay in Palestine. This was one of the two main considerations which impelled me, in the autumn of 1916, to initiate the negotiations which led eventually to the Balfour Declaration and the British Mandate for Palestine. The other, of course, was to bring America into the War.

    "For generations Jews and Gentiles alike have assumed in error that the cause of Anti-Semitism was in the main religious. Indeed, the Jews in the hope of obtaining relief from intolerance, engaged in the intensive and subversive propagation of materialistic doctrines productive of ''Liberalism,'' Socialism, and Irreligion, resulting in de-Christianisation."

    I disagree with the view in the second paragraph, however. I believe many Jewish ideologues or consciously or sub consciously religiously motivated to destroy Christianity and reinvent Western civilization in materialist terms because Christianity is an alternative, competing reading of God and History both unflattering to Judaism and attractive to a certain percentage of Jews. By turning Western civilization into a secular-materialist cesspool/whorehouse, the Judeofascists can simultaneously enrich themselves, use Western armies to war against Muslims and Arabs, and destroy Christianity. But the Judeofascists don't merely hate Christianity because of its anti-Judeofascism, they hate it because it stands in the way of their totalitarian master plan, and always will. They hate Islam for the same reason.

    Pea-brained secular left-liberals and dimwit Christian Zionists are only now waking up to the fact that trading in Western (Christian) civilization for another Judeofascist-engineered Frankenstein monster like the Soviet Union is going to end up killing millions more. Had the West correctly read history, Judeofascist Communism would have been strangled in the cradle and WWII completely avoided. The Judeofascists should have all been expelled to Palestine at that point in time, and would probably be living there peacefully with the Arabs by now as reconstructed Jews, banging their heads against the wailing wall.

    Instead, they were allowed to remain in the diaspora, accumulate even greater sums of wealth, and use that wealth to sow ever more chaos, subversion and misery.

    The key now is to just hold Western civ together long enough until Generation X, which unlike the perpetual dumb-ass, fu**-up Boomers doesn't give a sh*t about "the Jews," can take the reins of power.

    At that point, "tikkun olam" indeed — Christian style. In other words, start buying futures in one-way tickets to Israel on airlines that serve kosher meals.

  20. Charles Keating
    March 6, 2008, 4:48 pm

    Brandeis was a key Zionist player all right–the neocons resurrected the script for the US involvement in WW1 (and the treaty that resulted in WW2), with the attack on Iraq, and hopefully, Iran. Bushco & Congress, true, are disgusting. They never had to send their own children because there is no draft–the dying and dead are from–just check out the names & home towns of the USA dead. It will tell you everything.

  21. Charles Keating
    March 6, 2008, 5:49 pm

    I was born and brought up in the US, always protected by its Constitution and Bill of Rights. I never served in the US Military, though I participated in its foreign policy, always aware of needed boots on the ground. I will vote for McCain since he
    is the embdiment of Air Attacks, whereby people are always
    abstract numbers. My country tis of thee–for my liberty and nobody elses. Not to worry, the Demos is sammo.

  22. Crimson Ghost
    March 6, 2008, 9:09 pm

    Jews and wealth always have been intimately associated.
    Such common Jewish names as Rich, Richman, Diamond, Gold, Goldstein, Silver, and Silverstein make this quite obvious.

  23. sim
    March 6, 2008, 9:43 pm

    Charles:

    I'm getting little tired of your lies. t least twenty American Jews have been killed in Iraq, how does that compare to other members of the so-called elite? And how many of your children/brothers/aunts are in Iraq?

  24. Chuck
    March 6, 2008, 10:41 pm

    Sim:

    I don't buy your numbers. Yes, there are a fewish Jewish Americans serving over there, including a very fine officer I am privileged to be a little bit acquainted with through my son who is also an officer. But the fact is, there are probably nearly as many Jewish "Americans" serving in the IDF as there are in the American military. Maybe that's why when the Republican Jewish Coalition in Arizona pays homage to "American" soldiers they pick the IDF veterans to honor. What the FUCK is with that?

    Yes, I have some attitude, AMERICANS ARE NOT YOUR GODDAMN SHABBOS GOY: get it now?

  25. Michael Blaine
    March 7, 2008, 12:59 am

    I don't think the relevant question is how many Jewish American soldiers are serving in Iraq, but how many soldiers of parents of whatever ethnicity who support the neocon project there are serving in Iraq.

    That number is likely near zero. For example, where are the Bush kids? Where is Chelsea Clinton? They're not serving in the war their parents started. Other anonymous, disposable kids are.

  26. sim
    March 7, 2008, 1:20 am

    Chuck,

    You're son is in Iraq? No he's not you un-American fucking piece of shit liar, you should be ashamed of yourself!

  27. Ed.
    March 7, 2008, 12:23 pm

    People more loyal to Israel than to America don't get to decide who's un-American, sim. Move to Israel, coward.

  28. Charles Keating
    March 7, 2008, 4:43 pm

    Since the war against the Jew-hating NAZIS the number of American Jews in the USA military has fallen drastically. You can get that information easily on the net. It's probable more proportionately have served in the IDF. Again, I say, look at the names and home towns of those fallen in Iraq to pursue the PNAC, Clean Break Plan with their ignorant blood. I served in the US Army on active combat duty, as did my brother. During WW2, all my uncles served. How many posting on this blog ever served in the US Military?

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