Nobody cares that Bernie Sanders is Jewish

US Politics
on 140 Comments

“It looks like Bernie Sanders is going to be the first Jew to win a primary,” my friend Adam said to me yesterday. “So if you want to puff out your chest, go ahead!”

I was glued to the television for five hours last night and turned it on again this morning. Not a soul mentioned that he was Jewish. I went to the New York Times as soon as I booted my computer; the Jewish-owned newspaper that speaks to the Jews of New York didn’t say so either. I had to go to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency to get the news. Yep: Bernie was the first Jew to win a primary. Mazel tov.

So: Why doesn’t anyone care that Sanders is Jewish?

The simple answer is that the American elite– who Bernie skewered again last night!– live in a world filled with empowered Jews, so Bernie’s rise is nothing new to them. It’s not just that Joe Lieberman came before him, 16 years ago, but Americans are now very accustomed to seeing Jews in positions of power, from Rahm Emanuel to Elena Kagan to Paul Wolfowitz to Alan Greenspan and his wife Andrea Mitchell. The expert and correspondent desks on the cable networks include lots of Jews. At one point last night on CNN, I believe I heard four Jewish Americans speak one after another about what we were seeing. These same correspondents talk– at length– about evangelical Christians and their effect on the race. They aren’t about to turn their cameras on themselves and ask the same question wrt Bernie.

The plain truth is that Americans accept Jews. I grew up being schooled in Christian animosity to Jews. But according to Pew, twice as many Americans would object to an evangelical Christian as a candidate for president than they would to a Jew (10 percent see Jewish as a problem, 20 percent see evangelical Christian as an issue). Sam Stein of Huffington Post went to New Hampshire in an atavistic spirit of Jewish paranoia last week to say that Jews feel a sense of foreboding in Sanders’s rise, and the smears are going to start any second. I don’t think so. The only one doing Jewish shtik is Saturday Night Live, and Bernie himself, when he appeared as an immigrant in a (lifeless corporate) skit over the weekend saying that he was going to change his name from Sanderwitz to Sanders so people wouldn’t think he was Jewish.

Then too, Bernie is hardly any more Jewish than other people in the race. He’s married to a non-Jew; he is deeply religious, but that religiosity is not Jewish as such. Hillary Clinton’s daughter is married to a Jew, so is Donald Trump’s daughter. Both Huffington Post and JTA assert that Donald Trump has Jewish grandchildren, and Bernie doesn’t. Having Jewish grandchildren is often held up as a criterion of being Jewish by the Jewish press– so that makes Trump more Jewish than Bernie Sanders.

The bottom line here is that Jews in the power structure are by and large assimilated Jews, and so no one in the media elites has a problem with that. Joe Lieberman faced a different climate in 2000. He was far less assimilated than Sanders, and his religiosity caused people to scrutinize him. As I pointed out at the time, if it was a problem that George Bush was visiting Bob Jones University because the Protestant school had a policy against students dating Catholics, it was also a problem that the religious organizations Lieberman was a member of objected to Jews dating non-Jews. Lieberman was called on then to state that he did not object to intermarriage by Jews.

Today it is very common to hear our leaders, including President Obama, state that Muslims must “assimilate” into American society. Whatever you think of that cultural/religious demand, it certainly seems to operate in the power structure. And Bernie is assimilated. So: no one talks about him being Jewish.

The one big asterisk here is, of course, Zionism. The ideology of Jewish nationalism is premised on the idea that Jews can never be safe in western societies and must have a Jewish country and Jewish sovereignty in order to feel secure. Many Jews in the power structure, and Christians too, adhere to this ideology, so much so that it defines their views of foreign policy. Bernie Sanders surely was an adherent of Zionism; he said that the Holocaust and Israel’s creation were central historic events for his parents, and he moved to Israel in his 20s for several months, no doubt out of atavistic adherence to that ideology. Atavistic: something your ancestors believed.

How Zionist Bernie Sanders is today is an open question that we can only hope will get aired. Hillary Clinton is way more attached than Sanders to Israel; the Forward says that reaching out to Jewish-Americans is now part of her comeback plan.

It’s time for the media to have a conversation about Zionism that is at least as robust as its touch-screen fascination with evangelical Christians. The ideology of Jewish nationalism is surely out of date; today the most dangerous place for a Jewish person in the world is Israel. But the ideology is regnant among Jews over 40. One of CNN’s board of commentators last night said a few months ago, “As a Jew I’m attached to the idea that in a post-Holocaust world, there should be one state on earth devoted to Jewish self protection and Jewish self-expression.”

Does this ideology make sense? I say Zionism is an anachronism, and Bernie Sanders knows it. Jews are plenty safe in the U.S. One might even be president, and no one will bat an eye.

Update. Haaretz is on the story. Chemi Shalev writes:

Well, you might ask, by that logic, shouldn’t Jews support Sanders because he’s a Jew? The answer is no, for many reasons:  Because Sanders isn’t running as a Jew and it’s hard to tell how much of Jew he feels he is; because American Jews don’t seem like an underprivileged class that needs a symbolic upheaval; because I’m not sure that most Jews even want one of their own to be president; we’ve got enough tsores (troubles) as it is.

And note this unofficial ad on behalf of Sanders, which disparages religious difference-making; a possible dig at Hillary Clinton’s appeals to identity politics.

Thanks to Ofer Neiman, Annie Robbins, and Adam Horowitz.

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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140 Responses

  1. pabelmont
    February 10, 2016, 10:01 am

    Evangelicals are mentioned but Jews are not? Well, yes, but not necessarily because evangelicals are a dissed religion. Because their impact on politics springs from their religion (or the views of their religious supervisors).

    By contrast, Jews do not, on most issues, base their politics on religion. Wall-street Jews favor Hillary (or some Republicans), while main-street Jews favor Bernie. But not because he is a Jew.

    As to USA’s support for Israel, that is something the media-Jews (and media-others) prefer to sweep under the rug! Even if Bernie spoke against Israel (or against the settlements, for instance), I doubt the uproar (if any) would mention that he was a Jew — it would mention the USA’s undying attachment and love for poor beleagured (never beleaguering!) Israel.

    • kalithea
      February 10, 2016, 1:27 pm

      But American Jews do base their politics on Zionism and you can say that Zionism is a kind of cult that exploits Judaism besides historic tragedy. If Hillary were anti-Zionist they’ve be voting for Bernie and vice-versa regardless of the other progressive differences.

  2. eljay
    February 10, 2016, 10:16 am

    … The plain truth is that Americans accept Jews. …

    And there’s no reason that they shouldn’t: Americans who happen to be Jewish are still Americans, and America is their homeland.

    But anti-Semitic, Jew-hating Zio-supremacists are doing their damnedest to f*ck that up for Jewish Americans (and for Jewish citizens of other countries) by insisting that they must be loyal to a foreign “Jewish State” named Israel – a colonialist, (war) criminal and religion-supremacist state that purports to speak and act on behalf of all Jewish people in the world.

  3. Annie Robbins
    February 10, 2016, 10:49 am

    Not a soul mentioned that he was Jewish

    they are noticing in israel. funny thing, there is an excellent article up at haaretz on bernie sanders, his ideas and the situation in american society. and oddly imho, the title of the article is “How a 74-year-old Jewish Grandpa Will Change the American Order”
    read more: http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.702350

    Last week the usually pro-business, conservative paper Financial Times published an op-ed arguing that the economic and political elites of the West have grown detached from the disaffected people. “One cause of disquiet is the sense that those at the top are corrupt, complacent and incompetent,” wrote Martin Wolf. Is that just the way people feel, or are there empirical proofs of corruption in the higher realms of politicians and big business?

    The astonishment of the political and economic establishment, and the press, at Sanders’ popularity – and that of Donald Trump – reflects that detachment. Hedge fund manager Steve Schwarzman, a Jewish billionaire who once compared the plan to raise tax on hedge funds to Hitler’s invasion of Poland, no less, said last month at Davos that he found the American public’s anger, as expressed in Sanders’ rise, bewildering.

    “I find the whole thing astonishing and what’s remarkable is the amount of anger,” he said, and called Sanders’ rise “stunning.”
    Jamie Dimon, CEO of JP Morgan, recently remarked on declining median income that people are better off – 20 years ago the air was worse and they didn’t have iPhones.

    On Monday, Sanders lost the Iowa caucus to Hillary, but barely. If anything, compared with his political status a few months ago, arguably he scored a stunning success. Hillary and Bill Clinton’s rich, well-oiled war machine, which has been rooted deep in the American establishment, on Wall Street, and in the world press and entertainment for the last 30 years, was as astonished as Schwarzman.

    more at the link, really good article that as far as i recall had nothing to do with him being jewish, except the title.

    Sam Stein of Huffington Post went to New Hampshire in an atavistic spirit of Jewish paranoia last week to say that Jews feel a sense of foreboding in Sanders’s rise, and the smears are going to start any second.

    evidently phil doesn’t follow all the comment threads here (shock of shock!) at mondoweiss or else he’s thumbing his nose at yonah’s total freak out yesterday when shmuel referenced “jewish paranoia”. actually shmuel’s reference was “zionist paranoia” (i think). and i guess “paranoia” was just too much incitement for yonah and the backlash was outrageous! just had to say that.

    • rugal_b
      February 10, 2016, 10:57 am

      Yup, Bernie is indeed a popular figure in Israel, especially among the young people and those identifying in left-wing politics. More interesting though, is how most of the support for Bernie and his policies are coming from Mizrahim Jews, instead of his skin-folk, the Ashkenazim who are still hoping for Hillary to win.

      You would think there would be a similar scenario in Israel that mirrors Obama’s overwhelming popularity among black Americans but based on the current political climate, there is no such thing. White Ashkenazim Israelis are the for the most part, looking past Bernie.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 10, 2016, 11:17 am

        More interesting though, is how most of the support for Bernie and his policies are coming from Mizrahim Jews

        source please. or is this another of your hunches?

        the Ashkenazim who are still hoping for Hillary to win.

        source? since there are scores of college age kids supporting sanders there’s a distinct possibility many of them are jewish and ashkenazi. and there are likely quite a lot of jewish adults fitting this same description.

      • rugal_b
        February 10, 2016, 12:28 pm

        “source? since there are scores of college age kids supporting sanders there’s a distinct possibility many of them are jewish and ashkenazi. and there are likely quite a lot of jewish adults fitting this same description. ”

        Unfortunately, the comment was based on my interactions with many of my colleagues and politically minded friends in social media; a personal perspective on the issue.

        Regardless, among millennials in Israel, it does appear Bernie is popular with both the Ashkenazim and Mizrahim. However, there is a clear trend that I personally note, where a majority of Mizrahim are especially in strong favor of Sanders, and not as split compared to their Ashkenazi counterparts.

        I think there is a revolutionary consciousness forming among the Mizrahim, that is waking them up to the reality of their true status in White Supremacist Israel. They are starting to see holes, holes in the Zionist narrative of protecting Jewish interests in a world that universally hate Jews.

        The video below shows exactly what is going on within the minds of the Mizrahim Jews now, who have been indoctrinated to hate their own kind since the establishment of the state of Israel. They are waking up and it’s not going to be easy for Israel to deal with.

        https://youtu.be/vd9aIamXjQI

      • Annie Robbins
        February 10, 2016, 5:54 pm

        I personally note …. a majority of Mizrahim are especially in strong favor of Sanders

        so that would be another big fat “NO”, you have no source whatsoever. not even a link to some website where you read something someone wrote. and yet you’re quite comfortable speaking for the majority of (american i presume) mizrahim jews. uh huh.

        I think there is a revolutionary consciousness forming among the Mizrahim, that is waking them up to the reality of their true status …

        in israel after 7 decades? i should think so. it’s not exactly a secret.

      • kalithea
        February 10, 2016, 1:38 pm

        Yes, no doubt Zionists of different stripes are separating into the Hillary camp and the Bernie camp, but I can tell you that if Bernie wins they’re going to put the screws on him to continue with the status quo. Besides, Bernie’s for the two-state. What two-state? Is he trying to say it’s still viable or is that just “a kick the can down the road” routine? He just better not restart the two-state farce; because that’s just a delaying tactic with more of the same lip service and an excuse to tie the Palestinians hands indefinitely in their unilateral initiatives regarding human rights.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 10, 2016, 3:24 pm

        he said awhile ago the US should pressure israel. he could nix the UN veto or withhold ‘aid’ til they did something. let’s just hope he doesn’t go into one of these routines about ‘the only way is for the 2 parties to negotiate’.

      • MHughes976
        February 10, 2016, 3:59 pm

        Everyone who is anyone in the western world is a 2stater, though none puts any pressure on Israel to set up the second state.

      • Mooser
        February 10, 2016, 11:09 pm

        “The video below shows exactly what is going on within the minds of the Mizrahim Jews now, “

        I think you have been misinformed. The man in the video is Muhammad Ali, an American prize-fighter, a heavyweight boxer. Won the championship, I believe.

    • eljay
      February 10, 2016, 11:02 am

      || Annie Robbins: … evidently phil doesn’t follow all the comment threads here (shock of shock!) at mondoweiss or else he’s thumbing his nose at yonah’s total freak out yesterday when shmuel referenced “jewish paranoia”. actually shmuel’s reference was “zionist paranoia” (i think). and i guess “paranoia” was just too much incitement for yonah and the backlash was outrageous! … ||

      It was quite a show. y.f. ranted, slavered and raved…but at least he didn’t scoff. :-)

    • Philip Weiss
      February 10, 2016, 11:17 am

      Thanks Annie!

    • yonah fredman
      February 10, 2016, 5:15 pm

      When Shmuel who i respect uses the word paranoid, I object. particularly because as someone who writes about Judaism I feel that he has an opportunity to communicate with Jews who disagree with him. Phil has written antisemitic drivel at least on one occasion and uses the word paranoid from time to time. I respect Phil’s general integrity, but i have learnt not to worry about Phil’s use of the English language.

    • rugal_b
      February 11, 2016, 1:39 am

      “so that would be another big fat “NO”, you have no source whatsoever. not even a link to some website where you read something someone wrote…. ” – Annie

      There is no reason for snark, I never claimed any official numbers, just giving my personal perspective therefore it is normal to not supply a peer-reviewed source. If it wasn’t the case, the site would just end up receiving 2 to 3 comments per article.

      “and yet you’re quite comfortable speaking for the majority of (american i presume) mizrahim jews. uh huh”

      You presumed wrong. I meant Israeli Jews. The social classification system of Mizrahim, Ashkenazim, Sephardic etc are Israel-specific, no one uses this system in the US.

      “in israel after 7 decades? i should think so. it’s not exactly a secret.”

      Yeah just goes to show the depth of social conditioning that exist within the Israeli society, where people are indoctrinated to hate their own brothers and sisters from birth, for the sinister purpose of strengthening the white-supremacist state. Kinda like how the white elite used anti-black and Islamophobic sentiments to divide the non-white Americans and maintain their place in the top of the hierarchy.

      Mizrahim have no issues with Arabs, just like Ali had no issues with the Viet-congs to go risk his life fighting them in ‘Nam.

      It’s not Arabs who treat Mizrahim as inferior people with dirty blood, its not Arabs who view Mizrahim ancestral traditions and cultures with disdain, its not Arabs who discriminate against them in the economic and social systems of Israel. It’s the European white Jews, who are in Israel not to be part of a healthy, and positive brotherhood with all Jews, but to act out their privilege and participate in global white supremacy. This is what many Mizrahim are realizing now and that is why they are supporting Bernie en masse, as opposed to the pro-Zionist Hillary.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 11:18 am

        More interesting though, is how you routinely beat your wife.

      • rugal_b
        February 11, 2016, 12:19 pm

        “More interesting though, is how you routinely beat your wife. – Annie

        WTF?

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 1:05 pm

        WTF

        yeah of course you don’t get it rugal, that is because you can’t hear yourself the way others hear you. you blithely claim (scroll up) “More interesting though, is how most of the support for Bernie and his policies are coming from Mizrahim Jews ” , as well as claiming “Ashkenazim .. hoping for Hillary to win “, and then pile on loads of pontification (which is your specialty) w/ NO caveats what so ever. no, in my opinion, or i have a theory, or source or anything. merely a launching off pad for more unsourced rug-theory.

        i inquire and you admit it’s your “personal perspective” and load us up w/more unsourced pontification – (including, of course, your obsession “status in White Supremacist” which you segue into EVERYTHING) i call you out on it and you lecture me on ‘snarking’?

        you deem to speak on “exactly what is going on within the minds of the Mizrahim Jews” as if they all think in a pack.

        well, i can do that too rugal. i don’t need to source anything i say. i find it excruciatingly interesting how you routinely beat your wife. and i know exactly what is going on within the mind of someone such as yourself. and how do i know this? based on my interactions with many of my colleagues and politically minded friends in social media; a personal perspective on the issue.

  4. rugal_b
    February 10, 2016, 10:49 am

    “Americans accept Jews”

    I’m sorry but American is not a suitable label for a group of people with like minded attitudes towards immigrants and foreign policy. You might as well replace “American” with people, and it won’t really make much of a difference considering the immense diversity existing among Americans in all sociological factors.

    I think the author meant to say “white people” accepted Jews, because I’m sure POC don’t really give a hoot about this Jew non-Jew nonsense.

    • Annie Robbins
      February 10, 2016, 11:05 am

      I think the author meant to say “white people” accepted Jews

      i think phil meant to say exactly what he said.

      • Mooser
        February 10, 2016, 11:56 am

        “I think the author meant to say…”

        Ah, let us begin the spin. I wonder how many RPMs “rugal b” will do today?

    • rugal_b
      February 10, 2016, 1:00 pm

      @Mooser, in the words of Hillary Clinton, lets stop these artful smear and say whatever you want to say plainly to my face.

      What the hell are you talking about me spinning and what not? Who are you trying to impress with this ridiculous cryptic lingo?

      • Mooser
        February 10, 2016, 4:09 pm

        “What the hell are you talking about me spinning and what not?”

        Here’s a perfect example: “most of the support for Bernie and his policies are coming from Mizrahim Jews, instead of his skin-folk, the Ashkenazim

        His “skin-folk, the Ashkenazim”? Ho-kay! “Skin-folk”!

      • Ellen
        February 11, 2016, 7:45 am

        Rugal_b , nothing cryptic. Annie was clear as a bell. Phil meant what he wrote.

        You threw your interpretation onto his words, and that is your Spin.

    • Kris
      February 10, 2016, 4:03 pm

      @rugal_b: “ think the author meant to say “white people” accepted Jews, because I’m sure POC don’t really give a hoot about this Jew non-Jew nonsense.”

      Actually, there is a long history of unpleasantness between blacks and Jews in the U.S.
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/African_American%E2%80%93Jewish_relations

  5. Maximus Decimus Meridius
    February 10, 2016, 11:39 am

    A Jewish man may soon be a candidate for president of the world’s most powerful country.

    A Jewish man was leader of Her Majesty’s Opposition until last year.

    A Jewish man was President de la Republique in France.

    And yet we’re still being told that anti-semitism is a major problem, and that Jews need Israel as a spare country?

    • Brewer
      February 10, 2016, 3:04 pm

      Several computers ago I compiled a list of politically powerful Jewish figures in World History as counterpoint to certain recurring themes raised by trolls. An impressive list – I doubt any minority group has had anything approaching the influence in Europe, the Americas and yes, the Middle East.
      I often use Sir Sassoon Eskell, the Father of Iraq’s Parliament, as an example of the ravages Zionism wrought on Arab/Jewish relations.
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sassoon_Eskell

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius
        February 11, 2016, 11:27 am

        Exactly. For an ‘opressed’ group, Jews do pretty well for themselves. Which of course is not to suggest that Jews have not been the victims of horrible persecution an various points in history, but it’s nonsensical to claim that Jews are this powerless minority which needs a spare country held in reserve for them to flee to.

        On the other hand, could anyone envisage a Muslim become president of any Western nation? The mere fact that the very Christian Barack Obama had a ‘Muslim sounding’ middle name was, and still is, held against him by many.

  6. Ossinev
    February 10, 2016, 11:57 am

    Meanwhile Haaretz reports:
    “Clinton to Attack Sanders on Israel Record After New Hampshire Defeat
    For the Clinton campaign, New Hampshire made clear that it is time to increase pressure on the Vermont socialist — including a harsher message to Jewish American voters”

    So let`s get this straight there are an estimated 6.5 million Jews in the USA. Lets be generous and say that 5 million of these are of voting age.

    There are an estimated 320 million people in total in the USA. Let`s be less than generous and say that 160 million of these are of voting age.

    So as a priority Mrs Clinton thinks that she has to target the Jewish voters ?

    To any independent outside pollster this would appear totally barmy.

    Forget health care,forget housing,forget poverty levels – Israel and the Jewish vote come first.

    Sums up just how corrupted by Zionism/Judaism the Clinton Wing of the Democratic Party in the US has become.

    • Rusty Pipes
      February 10, 2016, 1:47 pm

      The next two states, South Carolina and Nevada do not have huge blocks of Jewish voters (like maybe Florida and New York). It’s more likely that Clinton is reaching for a different Jewish donor-tier than the millionaires who fund her superpacs. Immediately after losing the NH primary, her campaign sent out an appeal for $1-3 dollar donations. They are trying to swell the number of small donors to appear as though Clinton still has broad appeal.

      But Clinton’s campaign needs more $500-$2000 donors as well for direct funding of her operations. The loyal AIPAC donors could be a help here.

      In 2008, Clinton’s campaign hit a wall with its donors in February and March when the major donors had already tapped out their eligible giving for the year. Obama benefitted not only from his own base of small donors, but from an influx of new small donors when Edwards dropped out — which helped carry him over the gap when his large donors also tapped out.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 10, 2016, 3:20 pm

        her campaign sent out an appeal for $1-3 dollar donations. They are trying to swell the number of small donors to appear as though Clinton still has broad appeal.

        they are trying to expand her mailing list. plus, everything sander’s does she wants to top. she said the other day she has had 700k donors. so she’s trying to build troops across the states. also, keep in mind every single $1-3 donation drags down her “average” donation. she wants to be able to say, like sanders does, the average being $27 or something like that. i think the other day she said ‘the majority of them being under $100.’ so if she everyone who votes for her to send $1 donations over and over it helps her lower averages. or something.

      • Kris
        February 10, 2016, 3:43 pm

        #ImNotKiddingMaddi trends as Hillary Clinton sends ‘desperate’ email asking for a dollar after New Hampshire vote. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/hillary-clinton/12150600/ImNotKiddingMaddi-trends-after-Hillary-Clinton-sends-email-asking-for-a-dollar-after-New-Hampshire-vote.html

        A woman named Maddi has caused nation-wide mirth in the US after posting an email she says she received from Hillary Clinton online.

        In the email, Clinton (or her team) says: “After tonight’s results roll in, keep this in mind: most of the country casts their primary ballots by the middle of March.

        “We absolutely, critically need to make sure Hillary comes out on top in the states that lie ahead.

        “I’m not kidding, Maddi, I’m asking you to give $1 right this second”.

        This has sparked much hilarity on the internet:

        The email has sparked memes which have been posted all over the internet.

        The memes seem to have originated in the comedic Facebook group “Bernie Sanders Dank Memes Stash”, where people post humorous images featuring the socialist presidential candidate.

        They were then posted on Twitter, where they started a trend.

        http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/hillary-clinton/12150600/ImNotKiddingMaddi-trends-after-Hillary-Clinton-sends-email-asking-for-a-dollar-after-New-Hampshire-vote.html

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 6:26 pm

        kris, just saw your comment. hysterical!

    • John Douglas
      February 10, 2016, 5:04 pm

      Clinton seems to have zero campaign enthusiasm outside of the 1970-80s feminists. She can’t win on money alone unless she finds a way to pay people to vote for her. In NH there seemed to be a negative correlation between ads and success. Hillary needs young people in her campaign, door knockers, a cheering session, get out the vote chauffeurs. Even to attack Bernie is a risk at this point, but to attack him on Israel, on his lack of support for further oppressing Palestinians, is stupid in the extreme.

    • Rusty Pipes
      February 10, 2016, 8:53 pm

      This shift in emphasis surely is not aimed at attracting Black and Hispanic voters in South Carolina and Nevada in the coming weeks:

      For the Clinton campaign it was a night that made clear that it is time to increase pressure on the Vermont socialist — including a harsher message to Jewish voters.

      “Hillary Clinton has been a very strong friend of Israel and that is something that should not be lost on the American Jewish community,” said Paul Hodes, a former New Hampshire congressman who came to rally for Clinton at her post-primary event. Hodes, who is Jewish and from New Hampshire, told the Forward: “Senator Sanders hasn’t showed himself to be the kind of friend of Israel that Secretary Clinton is.”


      In the past few weeks Clinton and her team have highlighted, openly and in press briefings, Sanders’ lack of foreign policy experience and his non-existent team of advisers who should have been working with him on these issues.

      In a message tailored specifically to Jewish voters, Hodes, who has been working closely with the Clinton campaign in New Hampshire, zoomed in on Sanders’ apparent lack of interest in Israel as a factor that should cause voters from the community to re-think their support for the American Jew who has just climbed higher than most others in Democratic politics.


      “Bernie is a secular Jew and I don’t think his religion influenced his stance on Israel,” said Hodes. “We know Hillary and we know she has an unshakeable bond with Israel, so this shouldn’t pose a great dilemma for Jewish voters.”

      Of course, it remains to be seen if a scorched-earth strategy will succeed in denting Sanders’ popularity.

      A Sienna Research poll of New York voters published Monday found that 41% of Jews in the state plan to vote for Clinton in the primaries, while only 33% of Jewish New Yorkers said they would give their vote to Sanders, who grew up in a Brooklyn Jewish family.

      At the same time, New York Jews expressed a more favorable opinion of Sanders than they did when asked about Clinton.

      Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook said in a memo that the Democratic nomination would “very likely” be decided in March, with the support of black and Hispanic voters key to victory. The next primary races are in Nevada and South Carolina later this month.

      “It will be very difficult, if not impossible, for a Democrat to win the nomination without strong levels of support among African-American and Hispanic voters,” Mook wrote

      • Mooser
        February 10, 2016, 10:45 pm

        “Bernie is a secular Jew and I don’t think his religion influenced his stance on Israel,” said Hodes. “We know Hillary and we know she has an unshakeable bond with Israel, so this shouldn’t pose a great dilemma for Jewish voters.”

        Shorter Hodes: ‘Better the schiksa you know than a moser.

      • echinococcus
        February 10, 2016, 11:36 pm

        Rusty,

        Would be nice to have the source here, as the article you quote does the trick of making two mutually exclusive statements in two sentences:

        A Sienna Research poll of New York voters published Monday found that 41% of Jews in the state plan to vote for Clinton in the primaries, while only 33% of Jewish New Yorkers said they would give their vote to Sanders, who grew up in a Brooklyn Jewish family.

        At the same time, New York Jews expressed a more favorable opinion of Sanders than they did when asked about Clinton.

        Or should we assume that New York Jews prefer one with tribal status no matter what but vote whom they don’t trust? Couldn’t solve the riddle.

      • Rusty Pipes
        February 11, 2016, 2:02 pm

        The quote comes from the Forward article cited by Phil.

    • Sibiriak
      February 10, 2016, 10:19 pm

      Ossinev : Meanwhile Haaretz reports: “Clinton to Attack Sanders on Israel Record After New Hampshire Defeat…”

      * * *
      So as a priority Mrs Clinton thinks that she has to target the Jewish voters ?

      ———————

      She will no doubt be aiming at the great many non-Jewish Israel supporters as well.

      Cf. Pew Research (2014):

      Strong support for Israel in U.S. cuts across religious lines

      Pew Research surveys find that similar shares of Christians (29%) and Jews (31%) say the U.S. is not supportive enough of Israel. Among white evangelical Protestants, nearly half (46%) say that the U.S. is not providing enough support for Israel.

      When asked whether God gave Israel to the Jewish people, more Christians (55%) than Jews (40%) say yes (although virtually all of the discrepancy is explained by Jews’ lower levels of belief in God overall). And the share of white evangelicals saying that God gave Israel to the Jews (82%) is on par with the percentage of Orthodox Jews who believe this (84%).

      * * *
      When it comes to the long-standing conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, asked whether they sympathize with either side, 72% of white evangelicals sided with Israel in the dispute while 4% picked the Palestinians, according to a March 2013 survey.

      Among U.S. adults overall, 49% sympathized more with Israel and 12% with the Palestinians. Half (50%) of white evangelicals said there is no way for Israel and an independent Palestinian state to coexist peacefully, a view held by just a third (33%) of U.S. Jews and 41% of the general public.

      http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/02/27/strong-support-for-israel-in-u-s-cuts-across-religious-lines/

  7. Theo
    February 10, 2016, 12:04 pm

    Here we go again, who is jewish, who is not? Was Sammy Davis Jr. jewish, his mother was not? Can one convert be more jewish then another one? What is an american with jewish religion, an american or a jew? On the same base, is a catholic american a refugee from Rome? What are scientology followers, immigrants from outer space?

    If I like a person, I do not care what religion, nationality or colour of skin he or she has, there are good people and bad people all over the world. Jews do not do themselves a favour when they always chew on this subject, people get tired of it very fast. Bernie is not running as a jew for president, but as an american citizen, an he will be elected as such.

  8. broadside
    February 10, 2016, 12:10 pm

    This column’s kind of a mess; it reads as if Phil felt something should be said, but didn’t know exactly what.

    An example of its incoherence:

    “The bottom line here is that Jews in the power structure are by and large assimilated Jews, and so no one in the media elites has a problem with that. Joe Lieberman was far less assimilated, and that caused people to scrutinize him.”

    What’s Phil’s definition of assimilated? Are Dennis Ross and Elliot Abrams assimilated? Victoria Nuland and Robert Kagan? Is David Brooks?

    Nobody in the media has a problem with it? Is that why we have a Israel-first media, because no one in the media has a problem with it? (Then maybe it’s the gentiles who have assimilated.)

    And Joe Lieberman? Scrutinized??? When? Where?

    Joe Lieberman pulled what is probably the greatest act of political betrayal in American history. Eight years after being named the Democratic nominee for vp, and all that entails — the corporation (the jobs!) known as the Democratic party — Lieberman actively campaigns for the Republican presidential nominee, simply because he believed John McCain would bomb Iran a nano second before Obama.

    Was that scrutinized anywhere? Was the word “betrayal” ever mentioned? I must have missed it.

    And I’ve heard, I have no idea if it’s true or not, perhaps someone on this site knows, that Orthodox Jews such as Lieberman start each day thanking God they weren’t born a gentile, or a woman.

    Is that true? If it is, shouldn’t millions of gentiles been told? Millions of women? Millions of gentile women?

    Should that have been scrutinized?

    • rugal_b
      February 10, 2016, 12:46 pm

      Really good points broadside.

      Call me prejudiced, but Phil strikes me as a deeply troubled, self-hating man who is struggling to fit in the rapidly changing American, and global social order. I think he wants to see himself as a white person, and want everyone else to see him that way as well, but is having a hard time to divorce the Jewish identity nurtured into him from young. Maybe this is why he is becoming more and more incoherent and politically confused with passing time.

      • Kris
        February 10, 2016, 4:07 pm

        @rugal-b: “ I think he wants to see himself as a white person,

        This bizarre comment absolutely floors me. Have you ever seen a photo of Philip Weiss?

      • Mooser
        February 10, 2016, 4:46 pm

        “Call me prejudiced, but Phil strikes me as a deeply troubled, self-hating man who is struggling to fit”

        “rugal b” “deeply troubled” is a common and empathetic description, but ah “self-hating”? Gee, where did you pick up an expression like that?

        And you are working a fallow field. “Hophmi” has already written “The Phil’s will Fall Away”, and I doubt you can top it.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 10, 2016, 6:08 pm

        “rugal b” “deeply troubled” is a common and empathetic description, but ah “self-hating”?

        mooser, rugal strikes me as a deeply troubled, self-hating man who is struggling to fit in the rapidly changing American, and global social order. I think he sees himself as a supreme being, and wants everyone else to see him that way as well, but is having a hard time to divorce the identity forged here at mondoweiss in his previous incarnation. Maybe this is why he is becoming more and more incoherent and politically confused with passing time.

      • Mooser
        February 10, 2016, 4:47 pm

        “This bizarre comment absolutely floors me Have you ever seen a photo of Philip Weiss?”

        Phil Wiess? Hair like the raven’s wing, a Body by Adonis, patrician arches and toes like ten perfect shrimp of graduated sizes.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 10, 2016, 5:28 pm

        i guess it’s too late for a troll alert.

      • Mooser
        February 10, 2016, 5:40 pm

        “i guess it’s too late for a troll alert.”

        I get the feeling the word is out.

      • Theo
        February 11, 2016, 10:00 am

        rugal b

        I have never met a “white” person, unless you ment those with pigment disorder, called albinos!
        The so called white people, the europeans, are blond and blue eyed in the far north, as you go toward south they will turn brown haired and eyed and in the deep south black hair and eyes and brown skins are in fashion! Which will fit your discription of “white”. Far west the irish and scots are mostly red headed, not very white.

        Once all europeans came from Asia, the indo-germanen from todays India. 90% of jews in Europe and America have their ancestors in Khasaria and with other folks in the Kaukasus mountain area, known to be “white” people.

        You may call me an european or caucasian, but no way a white person, (although my hair fits that colour)!

    • Mooser
      February 10, 2016, 4:53 pm

      “What’s Phil’s definition of assimilated? Are Dennis Ross and Elliot Abrams assimilated? Victoria Nuland and Robert Kagan? Is David Brooks?”

      Yes, all are fully assimilated, American Citizens from birth. How on earth could we manage and pursue Zionism if we weren’t fully assimilated as Americans?

      • broadside
        February 10, 2016, 6:06 pm

        Totally disingenuous answer, Moose.

      • Mooser
        February 10, 2016, 7:23 pm

        “Totally disingenuous answer, Moose.”

        Look, if you are asking me if they are using their assimilation wisely, I don’t think they are. But assimilated they most certainly are.

      • broadside
        February 11, 2016, 9:52 am

        No, they most certainly are not, Moose. As you well know. Fewer word games, more truth from you, would really upgrade the site.

        Assimilate: “to bring into conformity with the customs, attitudes, etc., of a group, nation, or the like; adapt or adjust”

        You’re suggesting Americans, as a group, believe the state of Israel is the center of human existence? That the purpose of the US government is to serve the Jewish state? That’s surely the assumption of the Israel-first crowd.

        How has Elliot Abrams, author of a book that said Jews shouldn’t mingle with gentiles, assimilated? Doesn’t the fact that that book was written BEFORE Abrams worked for GW Bush proof not of any assimilation but of the power structure that runs America? The Jewish power structure that is the subject of so many of Phil’s posts? So why does Phil write such nonsense?

        Speaking of which: it’s curious to me that Phil never answers posts challenging his assumptions (that American Jews will soon reject Zionism), his predictions (that Schumer will vote for the Iran nuclear deal), or his actions (going undercover to Jewish settlements, and hugging Jewish settlers). Why is that always left to Mooser and Annie, who, I notice, 14 hours later (if she’s still moderator) has yet to approve my comment calling her disingenuous response to my post, disingenuous?

        Keith, one of this site’s sharpest posters, maybe its sharpest, got into some hot water not too long by committing some taboo, crossing some invisible line. There is that to this site. It is very clubby. And it seems very … disingenuous to me that a site that attacks power so fearlessly should be so very sensitive to criticism.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 11:07 am

        reading this on the back page, didn’t see your other comment and will go look for it. i am not the only moderator here broadside and since we clear comments from the’back’ yours might have just gotten buried. we are way backed up. and i don’t know what you mean by keith getting in hot water. sorry!

        edit: just scrolled thru all the backed up comments, there is nothing of yours yours there. so why don’t you tell me what article it is on.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 11:54 am

        Assimilate: “to bring into conformity with the customs, attitudes, etc., of a group, nation, or the like; adapt or adjust”

        regarding assimilation as it may be perceived within jewish culture. i think there are degrees of assimilation. one extreme being not to associate and/or socialize w/non jews. to the extent virtually all american jews immersed in the american political and media systems interact with american society and non jews — to that extent they (those in politics/media) are assimilated. however, i think there’s ample room within that sphere to be non assimilated. ie; a person who, outside of their professional work related life does not socialize with non jews, does not eat at the table with non jews, does not enter into a non jewish persons home or invite non jewish people to their own homes. in this way they are not assimilated. so one can be both, assimilated into american society and yet remain separate and not conform.

        so i think mooser is possibly wrong with the idea all of these people are “fully assimilated”, although some of them may be. the idea someone would reject the notion of marrying a non jew means they are not fully assimilated.

        i think there are degrees of assimilation and to the extent there are pockets of culture in the US where people stick to themselves (this would include the amish) accept in work related affairs — this represents NOT being in “conformity with the customs, attitudes,” of the general public. and i think this is what phil means by:

        The bottom line here is that Jews in the power structure are by and large assimilated Jews, and so no one in the media elites has a problem with that. Joe Lieberman was far less assimilated, and that caused people to scrutinize him.

        most americans don’t care if a jewish person (in the power structure) primarily socializes with other jews — we don’t have a problem with it. however, americans (and most people) do scrutinize what they consider to be weird customs.

      • Sibiriak
        February 11, 2016, 11:16 am

        broadside: Assimilate: “to bring into conformity with the customs, attitudes, etc., of a group, nation, or the like; adapt or adjust”

        You’re suggesting Americans, as a group, believe the state of Israel is the center of human existence?

        ——————

        Americans have lots of crazy insane ideas. All kinds. Multicultural! Some 50 million Christian Zionists think events in Israel are key to human salvation.

        So, hell yeah! Those guys are fully assimilated.

      • eljay
        February 11, 2016, 11:43 am

        || Sibiriak: … Some 50 million Christian Zionists think events in Israel are key to human salvation. … ||

        { Ils sont fous, ces Américains! }

      • YoniFalic
        February 11, 2016, 12:26 pm

        @Annie Robbins,

        Jewish studies scholars that investigate German Jews in the modern period refer to degrees of assimilation, of acculturation, and of disassimilation.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 12:39 pm

        that seems logical yoni.

      • Mooser
        February 11, 2016, 5:09 pm

        It doesn’t really matter if you want to assimilate, if the group doesn’t want to assimilate you.
        And it really doesn’t matter if you don’t want to be assimilated, if the group decides to assimilate you.

        Jews, whether we like it or not, have been assimilated by the United States.
        Now, as to what we, individually, and as communities, or organizations we call Jewish, do with that assimilation, that’s another question, and in the case of Zionism, the answer is pretty bleak, I think.

      • Keith
        February 11, 2016, 5:48 pm

        SIBIRIAK- “So, hell yeah! Those guys are fully assimilated.”

        Since a primary goal of Zionism is to prevent assimilation, then you believe that Zionism has been a colossal failure? That the overwhelming support for Israel among Zionist Jews is compatible with complete assimilation? That the astounding success of power-seeking Zionist Jews is simply the result of individual meritocracy, Jewish kinship favoritism a negligible factor? That Jewish opinion of Gentiles is, on average, roughly equivalent to Gentile opinion of Jews?

      • Sibiriak
        February 11, 2016, 11:23 pm

        Keith : Since a primary goal of Zionism is to prevent assimilation, then you believe that Zionism has been a colossal failure?
        ——————–

        Zionism has been fairly successful in creating/maintaining a secular Jewish identity and secular/religious Jewish solidarity.

        My point is that the criteria for “assimilation” is quite different in multicultural America than it was when the term “assimilated Jew” became prominent.

        Then, “assimilation” meant losing a strong Jewish identity and blending in with a singular dominant national culture/religion. Today, in America, you can have a strong ethnic/cultural/religious identity and still be “assimilated”, because ethno/cultural/religious diversity is the norm in a multicultural society.

        “Assimilation” in a multicultural society means you can function smoothly and normally in most social contexts, you don’t isolate yourself completely, you can speak an official national language, you are are not widely viewed as abnormal or alien, etc.–but it doesn’t mean you have to abandon your ethno/cultural/religious etc. identity.

        The question was: are folks like Dennis Ross, Elliot Abrams, Victoria Nuland, Robert Kagan, and David Brooks “fully assimilated” into America’s democratic multicultural society. I say yes. If they are not assimilated, then who else is not?

        —————————

        That the overwhelming support for Israel among Zionist Jews is compatible with complete assimilation?

        Yes. (I don’t particularly like the term “complete assimilation”)
        Is overwhelming support for Israel by a non-Jewish citizen compatible with complete assimilation?

        That the astounding success of power-seeking Zionist Jews is simply the result of individual meritocracy, Jewish kinship favoritism a negligible factor?

        No.

        That Jewish opinion of Gentiles is, on average, roughly equivalent to Gentile opinion of Jews?

        No. But “Jewish opinion” is not monolithic.

      • Keith
        February 12, 2016, 12:17 am

        MOOSER- “It doesn’t really matter if you want to assimilate, if the group doesn’t want to assimilate you.”

        Right on, Bro’!

        MOOSER- “And it really doesn’t matter if you don’t want to be assimilated, if the group decides to assimilate you.”

        Wrong-o, kiddo! Assimilation, like love, is a two-way street. One of the primary goals of Zionism is to prevent assimilation, to maintain the Jewish PEOPLEHOOD, that is, the pseudo ethnic kinship of a people apart. While you may be assimilated, and other Jews who so desire can be assimilated, Zionist Jews seek to maintain a Jewish tribal identity. So while modern Gentiles have more-or-less abandoned their pre-modern, socio-economic based bias against Jews, Zionist Jews have resurrected pre-modern Jewish socio-economic bias against Gentiles! As a consequence, Gentile hating/fearing Zionist Jews are integrated but not assimilated. How could any Jew who truly believes that his Gentile neighbors harbor eternal, irrational and murderous anti-Semitic hatred ever even want to be assimilated?

      • echinococcus
        February 12, 2016, 3:22 am

        You hit it smack on the nose, Keith.
        That’s the reason people usually speaks of tribal societies as being something left over from the time of woolly mammoths. Tribe members are kith and kin, all others are aliens. The ravages that this can wreak in today’s societies are obvious in the US: what is there to explain the Zionist lock on so many strategic positions by people mostly described as “secular Jews”, other than tribal favoritism and exclusivity? Their outwardly normalized appearance is of course totally irrelevant to being “assimilated”.

      • Mooser
        February 12, 2016, 12:24 pm

        “Wrong-o, kiddo! Assimilation, like love, is a two-way street”

        And you can get on the other side of the road, by simply renouncing your citizenship, and living as an undocumented non-citizen. How many Zionists or devout Jews do that?

        Oh, wait, I’ve got a better idea. Why not simply engage some ethnic separatism, and bigotry, and illegal support of settlements (so we have meaningless social markers and crime) and call it “non-assimilation”?

        That way, we can have the best of both, take full advantages of all the rights and protections American citizenship affords, with a stupid pretext of “non-assimilation” that we laud as some kind of cultural heroism.

        Call me when the Zionists or “non-assimilating Jews” start renouncing the protections of their citizenship, and I’ll be ready to talk about “non-assimilation”

      • Mooser
        February 12, 2016, 2:52 pm

        ” the idea someone would reject the notion of marrying a non jew means they are not fully assimilated “

        No, it means the person has a preference which they have a right to, in selecting a marriage partner.

        But there is no law saying they can’t marry a non-Jew and no law saying a Jew can’t marry them, if that’s what they do prefer. And if the Rabbi won’t do it, the State will be glad to officiate, since that’s what matters.

        Being “assimilated”, unfortunately, does not mean everybody wants to marry you, or even sleep with you.
        Oh, they have the inalienable right to, I guess, but that’s not much of a pick-up line. Don’t ask me how I know.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 12, 2016, 3:18 pm

        actually i was thinking more about the parents rejection of a mate for their child. and i wasn’t referencing anything about rights nor did i say or imply total assimilation was always or even generally desirable. but i am sticking to my opinion. any barrier (rejection) to total assimilation is defacto not a total assimilation. i am basing my opinion on the idea of a scale, one end being total emersion and the other as complete an isolationist within ones group as one could be. ta da!

      • Annie Robbins
        February 12, 2016, 3:23 pm

        btw, having a preference is not the same as rejecting someone purely on the grounds of ethnicity.

      • Keith
        February 12, 2016, 4:19 pm

        SIBIRIAK- “Then, “assimilation” meant losing a strong Jewish identity and blending in with a singular dominant national culture/religion. Today, in America, you can have a strong ethnic/cultural/religious identity and still be “assimilated”, because ethno/cultural/religious diversity is the norm in a multicultural society.”

        You seem to be equating multicultural with multi-tribal where sectarianism is the norm and there is literally no body politic to speak of, nothing to assimilate into. Assimilation consisting primarily in blending in so as to be unobtrusive. I think you are seriously overestimating the consequences of multiculturism on the political economy and underestimating the reality of shared mythology upon culturally diverse groups. Rather than a hotbed of sectarian conflict, the US seems to me to be profoundly conformist, the individual citizens atomized and taking their cues from a propagandistic media, including the entertainment media which is a primary creator of contemporary social mythology.

        The essence of assimilation is the acceptance of the incoming group as part of the whole society and the corresponding acceptance by the incoming group of the whole society as their fellows. A group which maintains and encourages a strong tribal identity, where the tribe is “us” and the society as a whole is “them” is not truly assimilated. The disappearance of obvious visual tribal identifiers merely acts to camouflage the psychological separation from the whole by the members of the tribal group. The essence of Zionism is a form of manufactured ingroup solidarity maintained through anti-Gentile myth-history and propaganda resulting in a profound anti-Gentile antipathy among Jewish Zionists. The very notion that all or most non-Jews can be lumped together as some sort of large social entity is itself absurd. Yet, it is an integral part of the anti-Gentile mythology of classical Judaism which modern Zionism has resurrected to re-establish an updated form of Jewish peoplehood. This ingroup solidarity is what Yuri Slezkine refers to as a form of nepotism.

        It has only been recently that I have reevaluated my position that discussions of anti-Semitism on Mondoweiss were pointless and a waste of time, real Jew-hatred negligible and not an issue worth pursuing. It finally dawned on me that the myth of eternal and irrational Gentile anti-Semitism was a core component of Zionism such that Zionism likely could not exist without this belief among Jewish Zionists. As a consequence, Jews with strong Zionist beliefs tend to view their non-Jewish fellow citizens as a potentially dangerous enemy to be controlled. This anti-Gentile mythology tends to work against assimilationist tendencies in Zionist Jews. And if Zionist Jews tend to think of themselves as a persecuted people apart, an alien presence in a sea of hostility, their fate more closely aligned with a foreign entity than with their current residence, how can they be truly assimilated? Israel Shahak believed that Zionism was a throwback to Classical Judaism. He was focussing on Israel, however, I think his observation can be applied to the US. Also, I think that “The Jewish Century” by Yuri Slezkine (recommended by Phil) is highly relevant to this topic.

    • Annie Robbins
      February 10, 2016, 5:19 pm

      Was the word “betrayal” ever mentioned? I must have missed it.

      well then you really were not paying attention!

      Top 15 Lieberman Betrayals: Joe’s Worst Double-Crosses

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/10/27/top-15-lieberman-betrayal_n_336024.html

      and that’s just for starters! just google “joe lieberman betrayal” 137k :

      Joe Lieberman’s new betrayal: The transparent cynicism in
      http://www.salon.com/…/joe_liebermans_new_betrayal_the_transparent_...
      Salon
      Aug 23, 2015 – Joe Lieberman’s new betrayal: The transparent cynicism in his Iran warmongering. The progressive reformer I met in the ’70s has morphed into …

      Joe Lieberman’s Slow-Motion Divorce From the Democratic ...
      http://www.thedailybeast.com/…/joe-lieberman-s-slow-motion-...
      The Daily Beast
      Jul 18, 2012 – During the run-up to the Persian Gulf War, Joe Lieberman was leaving an … Some Democrats saw it as an act of betrayal against his Yale Law …

      Top 15 Lieberman Betrayals: Joe’s Worst Double-Crosses
      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/…/top-15-lieberman-betra...
      The Huffington Post
      Mar 18, 2010 – Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) announced that he might join a filibuster against health care reform. It’s not the first time he’s betrayed Democrats.

      Top Ten Horrible Things done to Us by Outgoing Sen. Joe ...
      http://www.juancole.com/…/top-ten-horrible-things-done-to-us-by-o...
      Juan Cole
      Jan 19, 2011 – Senator Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) announced Tuesday that he would … is a petty, small-minded man, angry man who betrayed his own beliefs.

      Joe Lieberman’s retirement announcement: Why I loathe him.
      http://www.slate.com/articles/news…/good_riddance_joe_lieberman.html
      Slate
      Jan 19, 2011 – Joe Lieberman’s impending retirement. … Then there is the spectacle of it all: After each act of grand or petty betrayal, each time he turned on …

      Kirchick: Dems betrayed Lieberman, not the other way around
      http://www.nydailynews.com/…/dems-betrayed-lieberman-not-article-…Daily News
      Nov 3, 2009 – When Connecticut Sen. Joseph Lieberman announced last week that he would join a filibuster of the Senate’s health care bill should it include …

      How Joe Lieberman helped the Democrats lose the election
      voices.washingtonpost.com › Business › US Economy
      Nov 11, 2010 – How Joe Lieberman helped the Democrats lose the election …… Lieberman’s betrayal of the Democratic party can be traced back to his …

      The man Democrats love to hate: Joe Lieberman’s legacy
      theweek.com/…/man-democrats-love-hate-joe-liebermans-lega…
      The Week
      Jan 19, 2011 – The man Democrats love to hate: Joe Lieberman’s legacy. The Week … Each “act of grand or petty betrayal” still sticks in Democrats’ throats.

      Joe Lieberman’s Ultimate Act of Betrayal | Democrats.com
      http://www.democrats.com/node/9407
      Democrats.com: Presidential Straw Poll
      Joe Lieberman’s Ultimate Act of Betrayal. Bob Geiger’s picture. Bob Geiger. Want to meet our members? Click ‘Join’ above! July 05, 2006. 2006 Elections; |; Joe …

      and those links won’t work because i copied this right off google. https://www.google.com/search?q=joe+lieberman+betrayal&oq=joe+lieberman+betrayal&aqs=chrome..69i57.7204j0j7&sourceid=chrome&es_sm=91&ie=UTF-8

      • broadside
        February 10, 2016, 6:27 pm

        Disingenuous, too, Annie, as I was clearly referring to his betrayal in active support of McCain’s presidential bid, not some health care filibuster, not Iran warmongering, not against Yale Law…. whatever it was (some of those links don’t open), not his ‘attempt to run for reelection as a “petitioning Democrat.”‘

        Obviously I’ve heard of most those sites you cite (not democrats.com), though they’re not on my reading list (HuffPo, dailybeast). But I should have been more clear: no mainstream newspaper, no op-eder that I read used the word betrayal to describe Lieberman’s active support — his campaigning, for God;s sake!! — for McCain. And I couldn’t find anything on that WaPo link.

        (Oh, I just see now those links won’t open.)

        And does anyone know? (You, Mooser?) Does Lieberman start his day with that prayer?

      • broadside
        February 11, 2016, 11:59 am

        Honestly, I did not understand Keith’s reference, it was Jewish in nature, something about someone riding to the rescue, a reference you and Mooser said was out of line.

        And while we’re on the subject (are we?): I found it very very odd (and revealing) that neither Phil nor Adam chose to defend Allison Weir in the Weir thread — the best thread this site has had, in my opinion. The shunning by the tribe aside, it doesn’t take any great courage in America to be a Jew that criticizes Israel. But to be a gentile … now that takes guts. And where were Adam and Phil?

        Letting her twist.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 12:36 pm

        where were Adam and Phil?

        Letting her twist.

        that’s crazy. neither adam or phil have any obligation to take a public stance over this scandal — especially since it’s likely neither of them read her book. this idea, that either jvp, end the occupation, or any other group can swing down a gavel on a someone and the rest of us are obligated to line up on one side or another to condemn or not condemn is a false narrative and implies some acknowledgment of a recognized authority. there is no outside authority MW recognizes wrt what we publish. it’s perfectly acceptable to stand on the sidelines and watch a mud fight if you do not think your opinion warrants publication. there could have been things in the complaint they agreed with but didn’t think it rose to the level of a public condemnation, or not, who knows! or any variety of things. we were under a lot of pressure to cover the whole affair but MW is not required to cover anything none of us feel like writing about. had adam or phil had anything they wanted to say about it, they would have, but they didn’t. there’s no “obligation of the tribe” happening here as far as i know. instead they published the 2 submissions they received and provided a forum for people to discuss it — since so many people wanted something on MW about it.

        and where were you? did you write about it and send in a submission? no you didn’t or else it would have been published along with the 2 others. did you allow her to twist in the wind by cowardly not even sending in a submission? it would be absurd to accuse you of that.

        Honestly, I did not understand Keith’s reference, it was Jewish in nature, something about someone riding to the rescue,

        well his archives are there as are mine. i just placed “keith” in mine, glanced through them quickly and still have no idea what you are referencing. but it’s irrelevant, it’s logical after years of commenting people are going to differ on views and argue their own side which i always do vigorously. keith is not someone whose views glaringly stand out to me although we probably differ and agree on many ideas. whatever.

        EDIT: while i am completely cognizant of the fact many many people continue to be obsessed with what happened to alison weir, i do not share this obsession. hardly a day goes by without someone inserting her name into one of the threads, either someone demeaning her or harassing the site we didn’t do more. this effort to continually place this scandal in the center of attention, daily, especially in comment section that have nothing to do with alison weir is taxing. we have a thread to discuss alison weir. any further comment you may have on it or her — either in response to this comment — either regarding me, phil or adam, take it over there. not just today, but in the future too. or start your own blog to discuss it. i spent days and days and days moderating that thread, i said everything i had to say regarding my opinion and answered as best i could this SAME complaint regarding phil and adam. i won’t be hosting another discussion, again, on this thread. there are over a thousand comments on that thread, do a search for mine for further responses because it’s extremely redundant having to repeat myself over and over and over again regarding the very same criticisms.

      • broadside
        February 11, 2016, 12:22 pm

        Sibiriak:

        Annie has a valid point, there are degrees of assimilation. Your point, not so much, I don’t think.

        Phil’s original line: ““The bottom line here is that Jews in the power structure are by and large assimilated Jews, and so no one in the media elites has a problem with that.”

        For starters, it’s a real lazy sentence. In fact, not even sure what either clause (?) means.

        But let’s cut to the chase: there are two issues in Washington: tiny, criminal, apartheid Israel, and everything else. The Vatican doesn’t have that power (abortions are still obtainable, in places) , seniors don’t have that power (no cost of living increase for them; billions more for Israel) the gun lobby does’t have that power (people mention the gun lobby), the pharmaceutical industry doesn’t have that power (they, at least, get questioned). Only Israel.

        And — as I understand the word — that simply would not be the case if “Jews in the power structure are by and large assimilated.”

        (And if Evangelical Christians were to disappear overnight, the Jewish lobby wouldn’t lose an iota of its power.)

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 12:45 pm

        there are two issues in Washington: tiny, criminal, apartheid Israel, and everything else.

        LOL

        the gun lobby does’t have that power ….. the pharmaceutical industry doesn’t have that power …. Only Israel.

        you are so wrong. the gun lobby almost always gets whatever they want, so does the pharmaceutical! powerful lobbies almost always get whatever they want regardless what the majority of the people want.

        i’ll try to get back to your so called ‘lazy comment’ in the context of the argument in another comment. phil’s comment made sense to me although i don’t agree w/the main conclusion of the article (see headline).

      • Sibiriak
        February 11, 2016, 12:55 pm

        Annie Robbins: …still have no idea what you are referencing

        ————

        The “Ashkenazi knight” affair, I presume.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 1:36 pm

        Disingenuous, too, Annie, as I was clearly referring to his betrayal in active support of McCain’s presidential bid – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/02/nobody-cares-that-bernie-sanders-is-jewish/

        oh sorry, i must have read a little more into this and didn’t realize you were only addressing lieberman’s support of mcCain. here, i just googled “lieberman betrayal supporting mcCain” and this popped up. i would link to the nyt article but only get 10 free ones a month:

        Hartford – Democrats Vent Against Lieberman – NYTimes.com
        http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/21/…/21polct.htmlThe New York Times
        Dec 19, 2008 – CONNECTICUT Democrats have said they felt angry and betrayed by Senator Joseph I. Lieberman’s support of John McCain, the Republican

        there’s more. i recall he became a huge thorn in the side of dems and was roundly criticized. but maybe i am wrong and only remember my own opinion.

      • Sibiriak
        February 11, 2016, 1:47 pm

        broadside: Annie has a valid point, there are degrees of assimilation.
        —————-

        Of course, processes have degrees. But the question I raised is: assimilation to what? What standard? A single standard? Can you precisely define it? I don’t think the term is all that useful any more. It’s anachronistic.

        Annie wrote: “the idea someone would reject the notion of marrying a non jew means they are not fully assimilated

        Okay, a European- American who won’t marry a non-European-American; an African American who won’t marry a non-African-American; a Christian who won’t marry a non-Christian– are all these folks “not fully assimilated”?

        Who then IS “fully assimilated”– what’s the standard?

        Wikipedia:

        In Assimilation in American Life, Milton Gordon defined assimilation as a continuum, with the first stage acculturation, that is, the adoption of such outward cultural forms of the larger society as language, dress, recreational tastes, and political views.

        Total assimilation is possible only if the host society is receptive and extensive intermarriage takes place (at its most in former European colonies with a divisive black-white line, which allowed Jews to be seen as part of the desirable white element and where miscegenation was hardly a taboo).

        Most European and American Jews acculturated, but they rarely lost their sense of Jewish identity. They most frequently abstained from what Gordon called “structural assimilation,” the creation of friendships and other contacts primarily with members of the host society.

        * * *
        Milton Myron Gordon (born October 3, 1918) is an American sociologist. He is most noted for having devised a theory on the Seven Stages of Assimilation…

        1. Acculturation: newcomers adopt language, dress, and daily customs of the host society (including values and norms).
        2. Structural assimilation: large-scale entrance of minorities into cliques, clubs and institutions in the host society.
        3.Marital assimilation: widespread intermarriage.
        4.Identification assimilation: the minority feels bonded to the dominant culture.
        5.Attitude reception assimilation refers to the absence of prejudice .
        6.Behavior reception assimilation refers to the absence of discrimination.
        7.Civic assimilation occurs when there is an absence of values and power struggles.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_assimilation
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milton_Gordon

        I don’t think any of that is really applicable to contemporary multicultural America. It’s is entirely misguided, imo, to view religious Jews or any other ethnic/cultural/religious etc.identity group as some kind of “unassimilated” or “partially assimilated” guest group in a “host society.”

      • Sibiriak
        February 11, 2016, 1:55 pm

        Annie Robbins: the gun lobby almost always gets whatever they want…
        —————

        Wall Street lobbyists have a pretty good track record as well; as does the MIC.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 2:05 pm

        Sibiriak, i am sorry, my mind is like a sieve. i literally do not recall this or other specific arguments or in comment sections beyond a week or two. but i will go look for it when i have time . what thread is it (what article). we’re backed up here.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 2:14 pm

        sib But the question I raised is: assimilation to what? What standard? A single standard? Can you precisely define it?

        i was just trying to be helpful wrt what i assumed phil meant and others mean by assimilation wrt the jewish community. this is not my forte. others could probably better define the meaning, which is probably very fluid depending on who you talk to.

      • Sibiriak
        February 11, 2016, 2:30 pm

        @Annie Robbins

        See: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/11/agonizing-boycott-country/#comment-807322

        Minor event. The only reason I remember it well is because of quip by the inimitable gamal:

        but whats even worse is an Ashkanzi Knight riding a gamal, there are no countermeasures. Entitled and boorish, the ultimate solecism

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 2:52 pm

        0h — 3 months ago, no wonder i don’t recall. that was a long discussion — and i was giving my opinion. sorry if it offended anyone. but i think arguments are better made on merit alone not by going after the “Ashkanzi Knight” feature unless the specifics of an ethnicity are built into the argument. anyway, sorry if that offended anyone.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 4:09 pm

        sib, just got around to reading the rest of your comment and have further thoughts:

        I don’t think any of that is really applicable to contemporary multicultural America. It’s is entirely misguided, imo, to view religious Jews or any other ethnic/cultural/religious etc.identity group as some kind of “unassimilated” or “partially assimilated” guest group in a “host society.”

        i don’t agree. take the amish for example. while, as a group, they have carved out a place for themselves in american society, that place is not one in which they fully assimilates with the society surrounding it. in fact, when members of their group interact in certain capacities with the outside world, they are literally kicked out of their communities. so how could one imagine they fully assimilate?

        if someone moves to the US and learns the english language but chooses to live a lifestyle where they do not have social interactions that include speaking english — iow willingly choose to not interact with people outside of their native tongue — i am not sure how one could consider they have chosen to fully assimilate within american society. albeit, for native americans it’s different because they didn’t immigrate here.

        decisions within a group structure that penalize interactions with people outside the group by being banned from the group indicate no assimilation.

        think of the sex scandals within orthodox jewish communities where it is forbidden to go to the police department and instead the family is required to go the local rabbi. how is this full assimilation? when a group requires or demands separated law enforcement and separate standards of crime than everyone else? how is that full assimilation? whereas it doesn’t necessarily mean they are not assimilated at all, but when there’s no assimilation in certain areas, it’s a matter of degree.

        there’s also an argument to be made that full assimilation is the complete distillation of all distinguishing cultural features to the point of making those distinguishing features disappear or become unrecognizable — which, while i would not advocate, is not necessarily detrimental. and i think many americans, especially those who live urban lives in america, including where i was raised in california, there is a multitude of cultures here and you can see this merging influence all around, in art, music, architecture, ideas.

      • Sibiriak
        February 11, 2016, 11:54 pm

        Annie Robbins: i don’t agree. take the amish for example. while, as a group, they have carved out a place for themselves in american society, that place is not one in which they fully assimilates with the society surrounding it.
        ——————–

        Good point, and I agree completely. My brief comment on “assimilation” obviously needed to be further developed.

        As I just wrote to Keith: “assimilation” in a multicultural society means you can function smoothly and normally in most social contexts, you don’t isolate yourself completely, you can speak an official national language, you are are not widely viewed as abnormal or alien, etc.–but it doesn’t mean you have to abandon your ethno/cultural/religious etc. identity. (A full definition would need much more exposition, but that’s the gist of it.)

        Recall that the original question was: are folks like Dennis Ross, Elliot Abrams, Victoria Nuland, Robert Kagan, and David Brooks “fully assimilated” into America’s democratic multicultural society.

        I said yes. Obviously, there is no comparison there to the Amish or other “non-assimilated” communities, is there?

        It seems they easily meet the minimal demands of being “assimilated”. The question then becomes are they “fully assimilated” , which implies there is some attainable state of maximal “assimilation.” That gets dicey for me.

        Nobody took up the challenge to define criteria for maximal assimilation in America. If someone does, then are they going to set up a hierarchy of ” assimilation”, with some groups at the top, some in the middle, some at the bottom?

        I accept your point that a minimal standard is necessary –but beyond that,imo, a whole lot of ethno/cultural/religious identification is fully compatible with “assimilation”.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 12, 2016, 12:12 am

        my pt isn’t to put a value judgement on it (degrees of assimilation) keith. my pt was to address the usage of it in the context it was addressed in the main article. as a candidate bernie vs lieberman — do i think assimilation matters? yes. to the degree, i think the word phil used was scrutinized, americans do not outwardly recognize differences. once you recognize something “other” than yourself it’s natural to scrutinize it. whether that be romney w/his mormonism or kennedy w/his catholicism, or whatever. a more secular person is likely going to blend more. from an outward appearance all of the people mentioned (ross, abrams, nuland) etc may seem fully assimilated. but i don’t think peoples levels of assimilation are always apparent — which is normal because most people are private. so there’s a working definition (and i think phil referenced that) and then there’s the reasons why people have doubts. granted many of those doubts come from fear rhetoric coming from zionists like ‘assimilation is worse than hitler’ etc . so i am really on the outside looking in. maybe because i am 9 generations american and never had another country i related to as home 100%. besides, it’s really not my business how much an immigrant has their foot in the door of another country. it’s normal. i wouldn’t subtract that from our society because (for the most part) it makes it beautiful — those cultural differences i mean.

      • Keith
        February 12, 2016, 1:06 am

        SIBIRIAK- “As I just wrote to Keith: “assimilation” in a multicultural society means you can function smoothly and normally in most social contexts, you don’t isolate yourself completely, you can speak an official national language, you are are not widely viewed as abnormal or alien, etc.–but it doesn’t mean you have to abandon your ethno/cultural/religious etc. identity. (A full definition would need much more exposition, but that’s the gist of it.)”

        I am responding to this comment before your comment to me has passed moderation, hence, based upon this comment only. While I fully agree that one does not have to abandon one’s ethno/cultural/religious identity to be assimilated, I strongly disagree that functioning “smoothly and normally in most social contexts” indicates assimilation. True assimilation requires at least a minimal degree of respect for the humanity and integrity of those outside the ethnic grouping. Dennis Ross, Elliot Abrams, Victoria Nuland, and Robert Kagan are Jewish tribalists to the core and are in no way assimilated. What they have in common is that they take advantage of their Jewish integration and acceptance into the American mainstream to pursue a Jewish tribalist agenda. You consider this assimilation? Seriously? You consider Hophmi assimilated? seriously? There is a profound difference between assimilated individuals and a covert cabal. Do I exaggerate? Then, what the hell is Zionism all about?

        In pre-modern times, Jews were physically, linguistically and sartorially separate from the surrounding Gentile community (which they loathed, except for the nobility). Nowadays, Jewish separatism is psychologically induced through Zionist propaganda. It is the (more-or-less successful) attempt to recreate pre-modern Jewish economic roles and privilege in modern times.

      • Mooser
        February 12, 2016, 11:05 am

        “Annie has a valid point, there are degrees of assimilation.”

        You bet! And here are some examples of un-assimilated people:

        1) Native Americans, weren’t assimilated for a long time, long time. In fact they were considered, many of them, enemies.

        2) chattel slaves- we had bunches of thosde while Jews had full rights, we’re assimilated into the general population. (What they do with those rights is, of course, up to them)

        3) second-class citizens- for a long time, the US had a system of discriminatory laws, none of them aimed at Jews. Even iof subjected to social prejudice, Jews were not singled out by the Jim Crow laws.

        4) Today, undocumented aliens, or even illegal aliens, are unassimilated.

        Give it just a little thought, and you will see, that in spite of the fact that you, and I, do not like many of the things that Jews, as individuals or organized in groups do with the assimilation we were given. But without that assimilation, could Jews do any of those things? They would have no legal protections!

        Are we going to start arguing that African-Americans were not assimilated because they didn’t want to be? No, the US refused to assimilate African Americans (and some others, including Asians) for a long time.

        As far as I know, Jews have always been assimilated into the US. Again, how we choose to regard this fact, and what we do with the consequences of it, is up to us. You want to use it to preserve religious traditions, and dress funny and cut your hair funny, you can. Or you can use it to break laws and work to deny others what was given to you.

      • Sibiriak
        February 12, 2016, 1:16 pm

        Keith: True assimilation requires at least a minimal degree of respect for the humanity and integrity of those outside the ethnic grouping.
        ————-

        What then about the good ol’ days when when a tight-knit, racist, often genocidal, WASP “tribe” ruled the political roost and had their exclusive network of social clubs, private schools etc—were they “assimilated”?

        Or, lower down on the class scale, what about white racists whose respect for fellow Americans had some limitations, and weren’t entirely adverse to extreme acts of violence–were they not assimilated as well?

        And why limit the analysis to ethnic groupings?

        What about the tens of millions of Christian Zionists who would like to see U.S. foreign policy guided by Biblical eschatological interpretations rather than the mundane aims of “U.S. national interests”, and who don’t give a damn how quickly the earth is destroyed or how many non-believers are killed in the required conflagrations so long as the chosen ones will be raptured up at the appropriate moment. Are these good Americans “fully assimilated”?

        Or what about the so-called “top 1%” socioeconomic grouping in the U.S.? They don’t appear to have much “respect for the humanity and integrity” of those outside their tribe. They take advantage of their class position and acceptance in American society to pursue a tribalist transnational capitalist-militarist agenda But are they not ” fully assimilated”?

        Are not Dennis Ross, Elliot Abrams, Victoria Nuland, and Robert Kagan fully assimilated into the U.S. “power elite” (or whatever term you prefer.) And if the “power elite” is “assimilated”, then must not they be as well?

        It seems to me that assimilation/non-assimilation is likely not a good conceptual frame for analyzing the relationship between the Zionist movement (power network broadly defined, including Jewish Zionists, Christian Zionists and American Zionists), Jewish power, the Israel Lobby narrowly defined, and overall U.S. / transnational elite interests. I tend to think that term “assimilation” should be more or less be confined to the issue of cultural integration.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 12, 2016, 4:04 pm

        good questions.

      • Sibiriak
        February 12, 2016, 1:41 pm

        Keith: There is a profound difference between assimilated individuals and a covert cabal .
        ————–

        Assimilated individuals are fully capable of forming covert cabals.

      • Keith
        February 12, 2016, 9:12 pm

        SIBIRIAK- “What then about the good ol’ days when when a tight-knit, racist, often genocidal, WASP “tribe” ruled the political roost and had their exclusive network of social clubs, private schools etc—were they “assimilated”?

        You are referring to those white, Anglo-Saxon Protestants who dominated the East Coast elites as if these elites were reflective of all or most white Anglo-Saxon Protestants. I believe that as a group, if you look at all white Anglo-Saxon Protestants you will find them dispersed throughout society, some dirt-poor coal miners, and yes, as a whole white Anglo-Saxon Protestants became fully assimilated into society. There were no notions of white Anglo-Saxon peoplehood or eternal victimhood or those who were not white Anglo-Saxons were some sort of irrational murderous enemy requiring social separation. That the 1% does not place much emphasis on the welfare of the 99% is a given, however, to call this a form of tribalism is to intentionally muddy the waters. I am limiting my discussion of tribalism to ethnic groupings because that is where tribalism occurs, the result of a manufactured solidarity based upon a perceived common ethnicity. Jews consider themselves Jews based upon their birth facts and their birthright.

        I am emphasizing this idea of a lack of Jewish Zionist assimilation into the larger society precisely because a major goal of Zionism is to preclude assimilation of Jews into the larger society. The primary purpose of Zionism is to restore a sense of Jewish peoplehood and tribal solidarity which suffered as a consequence of enlightenment Gentile monarchs reducing the coercive power of the Rabbis, and of establishing laws to enable Jews to assimilate into the larger society as their feudal role of service to the Gentile nobility in pre-modern society became obsolete. One consequence was that Jews, once defined by Classical Judaism, now splintered into secular Jews, Reform Jews, Conservative Jews, and Orthodox Jews. This splintering tended to reduce the power of the Jewish elites who achieved considerable economic success as a consequence of dominating certain specialized economic roles due to tribal solidarity. Bankers, traders, craftsmen and businessmen in general were helped by international Jewish solidarity mediated by Jewish law. Zionism is an attempt to recreate this solidarity on a quasi-religious nationalist basis. Reinvigorated kinship. I have come to believe that understanding this dynamic is a key to understanding Jewish Zionism and Israel. And since Mondoweiss concerns the Middle East, Israel and Zionism, I think that this is a highly relevant topic to discuss. I doubt that discussing class differences between the 1% and the 99% is all that relevant to this website. Also, conflating transnational corporate and financial activity with tribalism is flat out silly. Corporate personhood is bad enough, but corporate peoplehood? Corporate victimhood?

    • rugal_b
      February 11, 2016, 1:09 am

      “This bizarre comment absolutely floors me. Have you ever seen a photo of Philip Weiss?” – Kris

      I’m unsure what point you are trying to make with this comment. I can just as easily show you pictures of Palestinian Americans with way more stereotypical white appearance than Phil, complete with the blonde hair-blue eyes combo. The difference is, they do not go out of their way to identify themselves as “white”, nor do they want to be identified as “white”, unlike Phil here. Gigi Hadid for example, is far more white looking that Phil, and even with her relatively young age, she is wise enough to reject the white supremacist social classification system and refuse the term white as a form of self-identification.

      Anyways, it is not my place to police what people to choose to identify themselves with. However, it is only natural to judge people based on their actions, and anyone who chooses to partake in the white hegemonic social order by identifying themselves as white, as opposed to more neutral, positive identities are suspect to me.

      For me it’s simple; if the primary identity that you consciously choose for yourself is white , then you have willingly sided with the oppressor, and therefore you cannot be my ally.

    • rugal_b
      February 12, 2016, 3:13 am

      Excellent write up, Keith. Good on you.

    • rugal_b
      February 12, 2016, 9:55 am

      “Nobody took up the challenge to define criteria for maximal assimilation in America. If someone does, then are they going to set up a hierarchy of ” assimilation”, with some groups at the top, some in the middle, some at the bottom?

      I accept your point that a minimal standard is necessary –but beyond that,imo, a whole lot of ethno/cultural/religious identification is fully compatible with “assimilation”.” – Sibiriak

      I agree with the overall sentiment of your comment on assimilation, but would like to add some of my views on it as a supplement.

      True assimilation for me, depends on the specific set of culture and peoples that are interacting with each other, not necessarily the dominance or the sequence of the establishment of local cultural hierarchy. What I mean is, it doesn’t matter if a preexisting culture already exist within a set population. If another culture, that is objectively superior and allow its adherents greater quality of life within the same physical and geographical constraints as the preexisting cultture is introduced, it will eventually replace it and absorb the adherents of the previous culture into it. I.e. assimilation will occur, but in the reverse direction from the dominant, preexisting culture.

      Best example of my theory is what is happening in white-supremacist capitalist cultures in the US, Western Europe, Australia and NZ. As the preexisting culture is inherently inferior with its rampant materialism, gender and racial inequality, non-spirituality, misogyny and toxic masculinity, I can see many Americans from the dominant culture are looking to recently introduced cultures to assimilate into, like Asian Buddhism, Middle Eastern cultures such as Judaism and Islam, and also Hinduism and folk Amerindian religion.

      Could this be why Bernie is getting such tremendous support from Americans of the dominant culture, when everything he fights for is against the values of that culture, such as equality between the sexes, races, respect of each other regardless of social class and status, embracing our humanity instead of material wealth, and love for your fellow man?

      In my opinion, we are seeing assimilation taking place right in front of our eyes, where the people are moving away from the dominant white-supremacist capitalist culture, like the alcoholic throwing away his last bottle of drink.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 12, 2016, 12:13 pm

        Could this be why Bernie is getting such tremendous support from Americans of the dominant culture, when everything he fights for is against the values of that culture, such as equality between the sexes, races, respect of each other regardless of social class and status, embracing our humanity instead of material wealth, and love for your fellow man?

        americans supporting “equality between the sexes, races, respect of each other regardless of social class and status, embracing our humanity instead of material wealth, and love for your fellow man” support bernie because they are part of an american culture that promotes “equality between the sexes, races, respect of each other regardless of social class and status, embracing our humanity instead of material wealth, and love for your fellow man”. it could very well be that this is the dominant* culture of the american electorate — as they see themselves anyway. we’ll find out soon enough.

        *it depends on how one defines “dominant culture” too.

      • Mooser
        February 12, 2016, 12:33 pm

        “I can see many Americans from the dominant culture are looking to >b>recently introduced cultures to assimilate into, like Asian Buddhism, Middle Eastern cultures such as Judaism and Islam, and also Hinduism and folk Amerindian religion.”

        Here we go! Take Dramamine if you read “rugal b”.

  9. kalithea
    February 10, 2016, 1:45 pm

    The bottom line here is that Jews in the power structure are by and large assimilated Jews.

    Too bad Jews in that power structure are all Zionists, and who knows how many even have dual citizenship with Israel, therefore not so assimilated as they’d like one to believe.

    And it’s true, who cares if Bernie’s a Jew! I just want to know what he plans to do about Zionist injustice against Palestinians.

  10. lysias
    February 10, 2016, 3:56 pm

    Barry Goldwater, who was the son of a Jewish father and who never denied his Jewish origins, won several primaries in 1964, including California, Illinois, Texas, and Florida.

    • echinococcus
      February 10, 2016, 5:00 pm

      Lysias,

      There is a huge difference between not denying one’s origins and participating in the identity charade. Did Goldwater expressly call himself “Jewish”? Either Google refuses to help or I am too clumsy in my search…

      • Annie Robbins
        February 10, 2016, 5:04 pm

        he was raised Episcopalian like his mother. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/politics/daily/may98/goldwater30.htm

        He was the eldest son of Baron and Josephine Williams Goldwater, and the grandson of “Big Mike” Goldwasser, a Jewish immigrant from an area of Poland that was then ruled by the Russian czars. Although Jewish on his father’s side, Mr. Goldwater was raised in the Episcopalian tradition of his mother.

        Either Google refuses to help or I am too clumsy in my search…

        btw, i just wrote “was barry goldwater jewish” into the url and google provided one of those big boxes on the top of the page with that paragraph and the wapo url: https://www.google.com/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=was%20barry%20goldwater%20jewish

      • lysias
        February 10, 2016, 5:17 pm

        From the NYT obituary for Goldwater:

        Goldwater, who was born in Phoenix on Jan. 1, 1909, three years before Arizona became a state, was the son of Baron and Josephine Williams Goldwater. His father was Jewish, the son of an immigrant tailor from Poland who had established the family fortune with a chain of clothing stores in what was then the territory of Arizona. His mother, a nurse who had left Nebraska to settle in Arizona for her health, was an Episcopalian, and he was baptized and raised in that faith.

        “I was told I was an Episcopalian before I ever learned that my father was Jewish,” Goldwater once said. “But I am proud of my Jewish ancestors.” Once, when he was challenged in the Senate on his opposition to a civil rights bill, he said quietly: “I know something about discrimination. I am Jewish.”

      • echinococcus
        February 10, 2016, 5:24 pm

        Annie’s response is not helpful re Goldwater’s self-description, while Lysias’ anecdote sounds like a “We’re all Jews against discrimination” thing. It does look as if he had been identifying himself as an observant Christian.

      • lysias
        February 10, 2016, 5:41 pm

        Goldwater did consider himself an observant Christian, but why does that imply that he did not consider himself Jewish as well?

      • Mooser
        February 10, 2016, 6:25 pm

        “while Lysias’ anecdote sounds like a “We’re all Jews against discrimination” thing.”

        Yes, it’s funny how ubiquitous that trope is. But read the anecdote again: “his opposition to a civil rights bill”

      • echinococcus
        February 11, 2016, 12:04 am

        Mooser,

        I did read that –just the regular, natural trick with good old Mr. GW.

      • echinococcus
        February 11, 2016, 12:07 am

        Lysias,

        Having a practicing Christian consider himself Jewish would only mean subscribing to Rosenberg’s objective “racial” principles, don’t you think?

      • lysias
        February 11, 2016, 2:47 pm

        Goldwater said that he was Jewish. Shouldn’t that be good enough for all of us?

        If conversion to Christianity means that somebody is not Jewish, does that mean Heine was not Jewish, Marx was not Jewish, Disraeli was not Jewish, Mendelssohn was not Jewish, Mahler was not Jewish, and so on and on and on? And what about Jesus? Was he not a Jew?

      • yonah fredman
        February 11, 2016, 6:17 pm

        lysias- when Jews converted for the specific purpose of gaining entrance into Christian society, one can certainly question their Jewishness and leave it open to question. I believe Heine wrote admiringly/sympathetically about the people of his roots whereas Marx wrote disparagingly. Heine, I believe, clearly saw his conversion as merely a ticket to enter society and did not believe in either Judaism or Christianity per se. I never heard that Mendelssohn converted out of conviction but merely to gain entrance into society. sometimes people on here claim that there is no Jewishness outside of religion and to them obviously once you convert you stop being Jewish. Obviously to Hitler conversion did not change a person from a Jew into a nonJew.

        Oh, yes. and Jesus. never converted and in fact considered himself the continuity (and possibly the culmination) of Judaism. He never considered himself anything other than a Jew.

      • lysias
        February 11, 2016, 11:05 pm

        So, if a Jew converts to Christianity out of mere opportunism, in order to get on in the world, he can still be a Jew, whereas if he converts to Christianity out of conviction, because he actually believes in Christianity, that means he cannot be a Jew? Whereas, if a Jew ceases to believe in any religion, he too can still be a Jew. Sorry, I do not follow. That attitude just mystifies me.

        And I guess that would also mean that, if Barry Goldwater’s Episcopalianism was just nominal, then he could also have been a Jew. Whereas, if he actually believed in Episcopalianism, then he cannot have been a Jew. Trouble is, how do we decide now what he actually believed? So he may or may not have been the first Jew to win a presidential primary in America.

      • echinococcus
        February 12, 2016, 5:12 am

        Lysias,

        Goldwater said that he was Jewish. Shouldn’t that be good enough for all of us?”

        Certainly not! There are some objective criteria underlying the general consensus for all religions and all so-called ethnic groups.

        If conversion to Christianity means that somebody is not Jewish, does that mean Heine was not Jewish, Marx was not Jewish, Disraeli was not Jewish, Mendelssohn was not Jewish, Mahler was not Jewish, and so on and on and on? And what about Jesus? Was he not a Jew?

        Out of your list, of course Marx and Disraeli were not –they did not convert, and the presence among their ancestors of some people who may have practiced Judaism does not make them any more Jewish than today’s Christians whose ancestors were heathens; Heine never gave a sign of religion. Also, I consider a vile insult to use such an attribute for people who are the best known in the world as virulent enemies of tribalism. Mahler and Mendelssohn officially left both the religion and the tribe themselves.

        Besides, the entire list is that of German Jews –not ethnic Yiddish dialect-speakers. If they were Yiddish-speaking Ostjuden, again that would not confer a “Pan-Jewish” identity on any non-believer.

        Finally, that sentence by Goldwater was nothing but a rhetorical artifice to pull the high ground from under a civil rights defender. My question had been, is Goldwater known to have associated preferentially with the tribe, otherwise presented himself as “Jewish” in public, or practiced the religion? If not, he was just a run-of-the-mill American, not a tribe or congregation member except if he participated in secret “misas marranas” or so.

      • broadside
        February 12, 2016, 10:05 am

        Yonah:

        Mendelssohn’s father had him converted, I believe, if Fred Child has anything to say about it, Child the host of Performance Today, and who wears his Jewishness on his sleeve. (Think Liberace.) In fact, Child seems to consider Mendelssohn Bach’s equal, but that is a whole other story. (As is the Piano Puzzler, a familiar song played in the style of a classic composer, that one week was a Jewish song! Talk about the sound of jaws dropping!!)

      • Mooser
        February 12, 2016, 11:15 am

        “Finally, that sentence by Goldwater was nothing but a rhetorical artifice to pull the high ground from under a civil rights defender.”

        Thank you “Echin”! I was afraid the fact that Goldwater was using his Jewish connection to oppose a civil rights bill would get reversed. Thanks.

      • Mooser
        February 12, 2016, 12:08 pm

        “when Jews converted for the specific purpose of gaining entrance into Christian society, one can certainly question their Jewishness”

        Oh, you bet, “Yonah”! Since you have resisted every inducement, every threat, every disadvantage, every slight and remained Jewish, you certainly have the right to judge other Jews at different times.
        “Yonah” if you converted, you would lose an entire country, not gain anything!

        “For he is a Jewish man! “He himself has said it, and it’s greatly to his credit he remain-ain-ain-ain-ains a Jewish man…”

      • echinococcus
        February 12, 2016, 4:10 pm

        Come on, Mooser. I’m twenty-two already if I am a day old. I should know my Goldwater (now surprisingly Goldwasser) from back then.

  11. Mooser
    February 10, 2016, 5:21 pm

    “Once, when he was challenged in the Senate on his opposition to a civil rights bill, he said quietly: “I know something about discrimination. I am Jewish.”

    ROTFLMSJAO!! Use your Jewish ancestry (although you never identified, and aren’t identified) to justify opposition to a civil-rights bill!

    Ah, the father of today’s movement conservatism! What a card.

  12. Steve Grover
    February 10, 2016, 8:04 pm

    Nobody cares that Bernie Sanders is Jewish except for Weiss and his cronies when Bernie moves the U.S. Embassy from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem the Capital of Israel after he is elected.
    http://m.jpost.com/#article=6017RTE1NEFCOUJFMDcwNTExNEZGN0IwODc0MUI3MUFCN0U=

    • Annie Robbins
      February 10, 2016, 8:24 pm

      steve, are you suggesting your link supports the notion sanders will move the embassy if elected president? that’s pretty far fetched.

      • Mooser
        February 10, 2016, 8:33 pm

        “Sanders may play down Judaism, but he played big role in Hannukah case
        By DANIELLE ZIRI
        Wed, 10 Feb 2016, 12:04 PM
        As mayor of Burlington, Sanders agreed to allow a public menorah to be displayed on municipal grounds, a move that eventually was contested in court. ”

        “In addition to his fight for the menorah display, the Chabad-Lubavitch research showed Bernie Sanders had expressed strong admiration for Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, also known as the Rebbe, the last Lubavitcher Rebbe considered one of the most influential Jewish leaders of the 20th century”

        And when it comes to disinterested, objective, honest research, who better than Chabad-Lubavitch? (Or, are they working for Hilary? No, more likely, the Republicans. Trump has already promised to move the US embassy to Jerusalem. And I would expect nothing less than a Trump Temple to be rebuilt.)

    • eljay
      February 11, 2016, 8:26 am

      || Steve Grover: … when Bernie moves the U.S. Embassy from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem the Capital of Israel … ||

      Jerusalem isn’t the capital of Israel – it’s a Free City under military occupation and colonization by the (war) criminal “Jewish State” of Israel.

      But you already knew that and maybe this was just another one of your so-called “zingers”.

  13. Kathleen
    February 10, 2016, 9:35 pm

    Bernie does not wear his Jewish heritage like a shield or a banner. He is wrapped up in human rights and social justice values….that is his appeal. Along with his voting record and very brave stance on Wall Street corruption and fairness. Ok sure wish he would grow some on the I/P issue. Although I think that people in the middle east stand a better chance of not suffering even more under Bernie rather than Clinton.

  14. hophmi
    February 11, 2016, 1:00 am

    It’s safe to be an assimilated Jew. These are the kind of Jews Phil Weiss likes. They’re the ones who don’t mention that they’re Jewish.

    • Sibiriak
      February 11, 2016, 3:41 am

      In a democratic multicultural society, being assimilated doesn’t mean abandoning or downplaying ethnic/cultural/religious/etc. identities.

    • eljay
      February 11, 2016, 8:20 am

      || hophmi: It’s safe to be an assimilated Jew. These are the kind of Jews Phil Weiss likes. … ||

      1. Are you saying that Jewish Americans should remain apart from their fellow, non-Jewish Americans?

      2. Should non-Jewish Americans remain apart from Jewish Americans? What kind of non-Jewish Americans do you like?

      3. Should “Arab” Israelis remain apart from non-“Arab” Israelis? What kind of “Arab” Israelis do you like?

    • Keith
      February 11, 2016, 6:27 pm

      HOPHMI- “They’re the ones who don’t mention that they’re Jewish.”

      The rather obvious implication is that you do not consider yourself assimilated, nor do you want to be? Don’t care to spend too much time around the irrational, Jew-hating murderous Goyim? But, like the missionaries of empires past, you are willing to perform outreach to the benighted natives to teach them about sin (The Holocaust) and atonement (support for Israel). What a guy!

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 7:43 pm

        this is rather OT but that line, “They’re the ones who don’t mention that they’re Jewish” reminds me of the first time i traveled to the east coast. i was 18 and visiting my friend who was a student at stanford, her dad was a surgeon at Columbia University Med Center. when her parents met me her dad asked me my last name (he also asked me what my dad did for a living). it struck me as rather odd because it wasn’t something other friends parents friends had asked me in northern california. and then i noticed that almost everyone i met on the trip asked me my last name too. i figured it was an east coast thing. mentioning or referencing ones heritage or ethnicity just wasn’t something anyone did when i was growing up. it wasn’t that it was considered rude, it just that we didn’t do it. if it came up in conversation organically perhaps but not just out of the blue w/no context. it’s still sort of like that here — when someone tells me their first name i don’t say ‘what’s your last name’.

  15. broadside
    February 11, 2016, 1:15 pm

    Annie — you say I’m wrong about the gun lobby and pharmaceutical industry, while ignoring the rest of what I said; that those groups are routinely mentioned negatively in Washington, never the Israel lobby. So how am I wrong?

    • Annie Robbins
      February 11, 2016, 2:35 pm

      broadside, i didn’t address what you didn’t say or what you meant (“those groups are routinely mentioned negatively in Washington, never the Israel lobby”), i addressed what you wrote as i interpreted it as best i could.

      that said, our msm and our politicos routinely evade mention or criticism of the israel lobby — of course. but our politicians (and media) do not routinely discuss the power of any lobbies — mainly i presume because those same lobbies target both the media and politicians. that’s one thing that is making this bernie/hillary competition exciting, however, while addressing special interests neither are mentioning the israel lobby.

      how you were wrong was 2 pronged.

      A: But let’s cut to the chase: there are two issues in Washington: tiny, criminal, apartheid Israel, and everything else.

      that’s a tad myopic. you don’t understand phil’s meaning and accuse him of being “lazy”. do you think everyone is supposed to know what that means because you follow it with this:

      Vatican doesn’t have that power (abortions are still obtainable, in places) , seniors don’t have that power (no cost of living increase for them; billions more for Israel) the gun lobby does’t have that power (people mention the gun lobby), the pharmaceutical industry doesn’t have that power (they, at least, get questioned). Only Israel.

      what power? the power to not be criticized? the power to get their way? the power to not be mentioned? you’re wrong because there ARE more than 2 issues in washington, and other powerful lobbies often get their way. and israel not “never” mentioned and they do not always get their way. that said, of course i think they have too much power.

      i am really backed up and might not get to your response in a timely fashion. and i won’t accuse you of being lazy if you don’t understand my meaning either.

      • broadside
        February 11, 2016, 4:48 pm

        Because support for Israel in Washington is across the board. Can you think of any other issue in Washington that is?

        Extending unemployment benefits for millions of Americans, who, without which, could be out of the street? Could starve? Congress divided.

        Raising taxes on the super wealthy? Congress divided.

        Going to war in Iraq? Congress divided.

        More funding for Amtrak? Congress divided.

        And on and on.

        Sure other lobbies might get their way. The NRA, for example. But those opposed aren’t afraid to raise their hands.

        During the latest Israeli mowing of the grass, one hundred US senators rushed (and you’ve never seen Congress move like they move for Israel) to give Israel hundreds of millions of dollars worth of more weapons even though just the week before, by slaughtering four Palestinian boys playing futbal on the beach, they violated the very terms by which they get those arms.

        That power.

        (And I see where this thread has been relegated to First Division, so don’t feel you have to answer, I know you have other things to do.)

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 8:06 pm

        what does “relegated to First Division” mean?

      • Annie Robbins
        February 11, 2016, 8:20 pm

        broadside, so this is what you meant by:

        there are two issues in Washington: tiny, criminal, apartheid Israel, and everything else.

        ?

        and when i have time i’ll go back and read the rest of what you wrote and try to figure out what it has to do w/phil’s post. or not. it’s clear you’re angry, sorry we’re failing you here.

      • gamal
        February 11, 2016, 9:32 pm

        “what does “relegated to First Division” mean?”

        In England footballers are totally innumerate, and believe the primary digit is merely followed by 1, they dont need to count most games are scoreless, relegation is an obsession, but is less enjoyable than it sounds.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 12, 2016, 12:31 am

        ;) ok, i give up!

  16. broadside
    February 12, 2016, 9:51 am

    Annie: you’re right. I am angry. I’m too angry. I have always been.

    Gamal: re: relegated to First Division.

    The English Premier League (soccer/futbal) has a great system; I think there are 24 or so teams in the league, and every two years, I think it is, the bottom four teams are relegated to the First Division, and the top four teams in First Division are promoted to Premier League. And this thread went from one of the main stories, to one of the lesser stories.

    (My favorite team name was a Premier League team called Sheffield Wednesday. They were relegated to First Division, and are now in Second Division.

    Real digression: Nick Honrby wrote Fever Pitch, and as I recall the anecdote: he played on a semi-pro futbal team and said there were two players who were so far superior to everyone else on the field, and they indeed got their chance to play in the Premier League. For a game, I think it was. And they were so obviously out of their depth from the the moment they stepped on the field that people in the stands were laughing. When you get to that level, the players are SO good.

  17. Citizen
    February 12, 2016, 10:26 am

    Commentators Hail Sanders’ Historic Victory, Warn Jewish Factor Could Ignite Antisemitism http://www.algemeiner.com/?p=310134

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