Jewish entitlement, and Jewish populism

US Politics
on 117 Comments

Last week’s Aspen Ideas Festival often seemed like a rightwing Jewish event. Accounts of the high-altitude leadership conclave included a lot of obnoxiously-chauvinist Jewish comments, notably this one from Leon Wieseltier, a contributing editor of the Atlantic (as reported by Jewish Insider at a gathering at the Aspen Chabad Jewish Community Center):

“If Merrick Garland is appointed to the Supreme Court, there will be four Jews on it. Eventually, there won’t be any goyim.” (laughter)

Anti-goyim-ism is par for the course. Though just think how people would respond if a non-Jewish public figure cracked, “there won’t be any Jews.”

The appearance of Secretary of State John Kerry at the festival was especially revealing (video and transcript). Watch his entourage as he walked into the tent. Power-journalist Jeffrey Goldberg officiously shepherded Kerry into the Festival, introducing him to a friend; then Walter Isaacson had a conversation with Kerry and made sure to give Goldberg the first question, which was more of a speech aimed at circumscribing US policy re Iran. Goldberg:

I’m not understanding the thought process that goes into the possible approval of the Boeing deal given what you think about Iran’s role in terrorism…

Other questions came from John Dickerson, Jane Harman and Richard Haass. So three of four questions to the secretary of state came from strong supporters of Israel.

David Brooks was there, the neoconservative NYT columnist who is gooey-eyed about Israel. So was Penny Pritzker, a liberal Zionist who served as an ambassador to the pro-Israel community for Barack Obama. While this report on the festival at Jewish Insider emphasized the number of undying neoconservatives:

The Paul E. Singer Foundation and Start-Up Nation Central hosted an evening reception and panel discussion on the sidelines of the Ideas Festival… Dan Senor moderated the discussion titled “The opportunity of life-changing innovation & the challenge of today’s populist politics.” Featured panelists included host of CBS’ Face the Nation John Dickerson, former CIA Director David Petraeus, Founder & President of Elliott Management Paul Singer, and CEO of Start-Up Nation Central Eugene Kandel — dubbed ‘Israel’s Larry Summers’ by Dan Senor….

[Dickerson said:] “I would argue the edginess [in this year’s election] has gone unaddressed for so many cycles, and people believe that their elections could be the vehicle to address their edginess, and they constantly kept getting disappointing results. So if you go through the drive-thru and ask for a ham sandwich and they hand you a cup of coffee, you’re irritated. They keep going through the drive-thru and they keep getting coffee.” Senor: “Especially irritating since for most people in this audience they’re Jewish.”

Jeffrey Goldberg made a circumcision joke; and there was this shtik about Jews in journalism:

Jeffrey Goldberg: “Oh, there are Jews in journalism?” David Rothkopf: “Yes, it’s the matzah ceiling, we’ve broken through.”

Rothkopf is editor of Foreign Policy, and his joke trivializes the role of American Jews in the establishment. We’re like the WASPs were in the establishment in the 1960s, except then there was more of a frank acknowledgment of the role– the best and the brightest, the Protestant Establishment, the Episcopacy, etc. This time round there’s a lot of evasion, because acknowledging the Jewish role, people think, could precipitate another Holocaust. Or at least get more people to label Jewish media figures on twitter, out of some impulse of resentment, rage, or criticism of the Jewish presence. Or maybe just irritation at Wieseltier and Rothkopf’s jokes.

It has always been my contention that honesty about the Jewish role in the establishment is not going to spark another Holocaust: because history doesn’t repeat itself, because people already know about that presence, and because Americans have a right to discuss the sociological character of elites, especially if those elites are influencing Middle East policy, as Jeffrey Goldberg, Paul Singer, Jane Harman, Penny Pritzker, David Brooks and Richard Haass are. David Rothkopf has pooh-poohed the role of the Israel lobby and doesn’t publish anti-Zionist writers at Foreign Policy; which is intellectual cowardice, because Rothkopf understands that Zionism is an anachronism, but is surely afraid of losing funding if he pushes such views. Emily Bazelon spoke at the conference; the Yale scholar who has admitted that she has a “Zionist core” only consults Jews on foreign policy questions, notably her friend Jeffrey Goldberg, justified the last Gaza slaughter, and says that Palestinians are by nature violent and vengeful.  At Aspen, she appeared with Slate editor David Plotz, who has lamented the absence of a nonviolent Palestinian movement, thereby ignoring the brave weekly protests and the boycott campaign, even as he has looked the other way inside the occupation. What an entitled collection!

At Aspen, Bazelon spoke at a panel on political trends, and disparaged US populism as demagogues making false promises to resentful masses. She did similar work lately in the New York Times Magazine, saying that Sanders was undermining trust in the U.S. system by calling it rigged with no ability to do anything about it.

I understand the Jewish tradition of being wary of populists. This is because Jews have, like it or not, been linked to western elites in the last 150 years; and populist resentment of those elites fed anti-Semitism and helped to create the Jewish question in Europe. The elite role became part of the Jewish condition: Jews led many modern professional trends in the 19th century, from banking to journalism to real estate to medicine, and that rise carried us out of the ghetto and fostered resentment, too. Today in America, wealthy Jews constitute an elite that is essential to Democratic Party/blue state fundraising: the Jewish role in political giving is “gigantic” and “shocking,” say these liberal experts. That philanthropy underpins the Jewish presence at the Aspen Ideas Festival and the power of the Israel lobby. Paul Singer the Aspen godfather funds gay causes and neoconservatives. Goldberg, the most important journalist on foreign policy questions in our country, served in the Israeli army and has maintained his career despite the false claims he published that paved the way for the Iraq War. David Brooks’s son also served in the Israeli army. The fact that there were no out anti-Zionists at the Aspen festival speaks to the fact that Israel is utterly dependent on an American Jewish elite that excommunicates critics of Israel.

Many Jews don’t care for elitism. Jewish history in the last 150 years reflects a struggle with that condition. The Jewish affinities toward socialism and Zionism were efforts to defuse elitism and the resentment it fostered. Theodor Herzl warned European leaders that Jews were forming a disaffected intellectual proletariat hanging around the stock markets in Vienna and Budapest, and they could foment revolution; and so he organized Jewish bankers to try and buy off European leaders for a chunk of Palestine for the Jews to emigrate to. Arthur Koestler, the Zionist intellectual, said that Jews were a “sick” race in Europe because they had lost a connection to the land. Call him self-hating, but one admirable thing Israel has done is create a Jewish working class: Jewish masons and electricians and bus drivers. No American Jewish family raises their child to aspire to be in the trades.

Bernie Sanders is in that other tradition of Jewish responses to elitism: socialism. His populist campaign was built on ideals of human equality and the dignity of the working class. Ethnocentric Jews tried to say that he was not a real Jew; and there was no room for his ideals at the Aspen Ideas Festival. There populism is derided as a false promise. And there is not a word of criticism of the Israel lobby.

Dismissing populism as ignorance is both incurious and dangerous. Using power and money to influence foreign policy is dangerous. Many Americans and Palestinians are justly resentful. Reread Wieseltier’s comments on the goyim. He invites anti-Semitism, because it fulfills his understanding of how the world works.

More thoughtful Jews need to wrest the Jewish future away from the Aspen Ideas Festival, and remedy elitism with humility. That means cutting down the power of the lobby, and allowing Americans to wake to the persecution of Palestinians.

Thanks to Adam Horowitz. 

About Philip Weiss

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

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117 Responses

  1. David Doppler
    July 7, 2016, 11:32 am

    “We’re like the WASPs were in the establishment in the 1960s, except then there was more of a frank acknowledgment of the role– the best and the brightest, the Protestant Establishment, the Episcopacy, etc.”

    On what do you base your understanding of this “frank acknowledgement,” and how does it compare to the joke you quote from Wieseltier?

  2. Walker
    July 7, 2016, 12:32 pm

    David Rothkopf has pooh-poohed the role of the Israel lobby and doesn’t publish anti-Zionist writers at Foreign Policy

    Phil, to its credit the Foreign Policy site publishes Stephen Walt.

  3. MRW
    July 7, 2016, 1:39 pm

    OT, I apologize, but this concerns everyone who has ever contributed to this site, and it’s important. For example, we can’t reference previous comments made here about Leon Wieseltier, who Phil has covered before.

    Can we get an official explanation why the 5-6 years of comments have been summarily removed from mondoweiss.net?

    This was done without prior notice to anyone. Why? How did this happen? Some of us have invested over 10 years of our lives and time contributing to this community. This was a tremendous time (and monetary) commitment no matter what anyone thinks of the value of what I contributed.

    A few years ago, I preserved all my comments up to that time via PDF. A feature of Acrobat Pro allows a word-count. It was 1.85 million words then—nearly three years worth at the time—the equivalent of 18-100,000-word (eighteen 400-page) books.

    Over the years commenters have contributed vital, important, thoughtful, and historically important comments. All that’s lost. All of Hostage’s VIP historical posts and references vanished! Shmuel’s comments gone. Ditto seafoid and shingo and Blankfort. Taxi. annie. Ari. American. Citizen. gamal. Slater. Danaa. Etc. These commenters made this site. So did Mooser. It’s a two-way street.

    Please don’t tell me it was some technical difficulty. Every American server company has redundancy, and multiple backups, or it won’t last in business longer than 24 hours, much less escape the wrath of the law. This ain’t 1995. It’s impossible to get rid of web content these days without an express executive decision to erase it. Ask Hillary.

    mondoweiss.net (registered with godaddy.com, does it webhost as well?) changed servers in August 2015, according to the status tab here. Whoever made that change made full multiple backups of the site, and made sure that all previous content was carried over and worked technically. So the current arbitrary cutoff date of the summer of 2014 doesn’t make sense.

    And it doesn’t make sense that blog posts from 2006-2014 are preserved but not the comments attached to them.

    Comment archives accessible by individual commenters started here in late July 2009, however. Digital advances and pennies per Gig storage costs in the aughts (2000s) made the Mondoweiss site decision to provide them a pedestrian choice. We have all counted on it since then.

    I think we’re owed an explanation. And, ideally, an explanation of any effort being made to get them back. Some of us would pay to get our histories back. They’re lurking out there in toto somewhere. And given standard server-company practice not to permanently remove backups for 6-24 months–even after sites go down–they are still recoverable, because of legal federal government retention requirements.

    Please note: Server-companies do not know what is contained in an individual site’s content, but federal laws now mandate retention, security, and preservation of certain private-firm medical and legal records. Failure to do so is costly and against federal law. All court submissions to federal courts must now be electronic. Therefore if a server-company has one private law firm or medical company–or mortgage banker–on its servers, they have blanket backup retention rules for the whole shebang to accommodate its federal legal requirements, even after a firm goes out of business, which allows time for someone in charge to download and preserve them.

     
    Please respond. Thank you.

    • Annie Robbins
      July 7, 2016, 1:52 pm

      hi MRW, i agree this is a big (huge) issue. i’m not sure we have an official response as i think the situation could be fluid. but i’ll see what i can do. my hopes is that our archives come back. my understanding (which is limited) is it’s a technical problem resulting from some kind of data overload or something. needless to say i find it distressing.

      • MRW
        July 7, 2016, 2:27 pm

        annie,

        Data overload or not, backups are on separate servers “offsite,” which means at another location. That’s what redundancy means.

        For example, Google has monster server sites in areas around its different centers. BUT. Their redundancy sites can be located–replicated- in lower-energy cost countries in South America, cooler European countries, or Australia or Canada. These site locations are not published for security reasons, and usually protected by armed gaurds. Ditto Amazon, which in addition to selling Orwellian amounts of stuff handles a staggering amount of the world’s cloud and server services for other companies, the majority of them wholesale providers.

      • silamcuz
        July 8, 2016, 1:22 am

        I believe most of the older comments in MW contained highly problematic sentiments that are not in line with the true narrative of the conflict, and therefore presented themselves as a liability to the site owners and its patrons.

        Examples of the common keywords and focus points within these comments included the fake Jewishness of the Ashkenazi, the Khazarian conspiracy, Zionism as the worst evil that the world has ever seen, Israel dragging down the good nations of the West. Almost all were unhinged from reality, with absolutely no political merit or scientific vigour and functioned to stoke emotions of hatred and irrational fear within the readers. Connecting the crimes of Israel with the existence of the various political establishments of the West, including the USA was strictly frowned upon because it would incriminate many of these sanctimonious folks as accomplices in the global systems of oppression.

        The old comments basically portrayed the fundamental truth of the IP/Mid-East conflict as Israel being the alpha and omega of the evils of the world. We know now that Israel is merely the tip of the iceberg, the unmasked face of the Western civilisations war against humanity and the law of God.

      • Boomer
        July 10, 2016, 8:10 am

        This thread no longer appears on the front page, so I infer that the discussion, including the comments about the archive, is effectively closed without an “official” explanation. If there was one, I missed it. As the poet didn’t say:

        “The Moving Fingers write; and, having writ,
        The Server is Wiped: nor all thy Piety nor Wit
        Shall lure the Admin to retrieve half a Line,
        Nor all thy Tears disclose a Word of it.”

    • Keith
      July 7, 2016, 3:54 pm

      Jeez, am I the only one that views the loss of the older archives as a minor inconvenience and not a major problem? The only one who does not feel that his older comments represent revealed truth to be cherished forever? Yeah, it is a shame, but so what? Today is the first day of the rest of your life, so get a life. Mondoweiss doesn’t owe me or any other commenter anything. It has been a privilege to be published in the first place.

      • Annie Robbins
        July 7, 2016, 5:01 pm

        The only one who does not feel that his older comments represent revealed truth to be cherished forever?

        keith, people don’t necessarily primarily access archives for their own commentary. there’s a lot of rich data in those archives.

      • Keith
        July 7, 2016, 6:12 pm

        ANNIE- “keith, people don’t necessarily primarily access archives for their own commentary.”

        Yes, there may be other commenters out there who view my older comments as revealed truth to be cherished forever. Hophmi immediately comes to mind.

      • HarryLaw
        July 7, 2016, 6:49 pm

        Keith, if you imagine the loss down the memory hole of over 9,000 comments from Hostage and others not to be a major problem, I do not agree with you, I do most of my research from those archives. I do hope this is only a glitch, If not, and because it was done without prior notice to the commentators, would represent a sad day for Mondoweiss.

      • Qualtrough
        July 7, 2016, 11:34 pm

        Keith – Yes, I think you are either the only one or one of a very few who would not view the loss of the comment archives as a great inconvenience and a major problem. Thanks for asking!

      • Boomer
        July 8, 2016, 7:08 am

        re Keith: “Mondoweiss doesn’t owe me or any other commenter anything”

        I agree with that much, but I would regret the loss of the archive, if permanent. Hostage’s comments, among others, provide a wealth of information that can be hard to find among the misleading propaganda of Zionists. (It would be more useful if organized and indexed, but the search function helps.) Even the often-deplorable Zionist comments provide damning evidence of their attitude.

        Still, I understand that there is a cost involved in maintaining a website, especially one that comes under attack. If that was a factor, I have to agree that maintaining the current discussions is more important than the archive.

    • Mooser
      July 7, 2016, 5:10 pm

      “So did Mooser. It’s a two-way street.”

      Not to me. I was under the impression that I wrote comments of my own free will, and submitted them to Mondo.
      At that point, they became the property of Mondo, to either publish, discard, with no obligation to archive.
      I’m just a teensy bit appalled at the idea that Mondo might have an obligation to me. It don’t.

      (The loss or inaccessibility of the comment archives is a big loss, that is true.)

      • just
        July 7, 2016, 5:32 pm

        Agree with you, Mooser.

        (The loss or inaccessibility of the comment archives is a big loss, that is true.)

        So many people that I’ve learned from and been invigorated by and because they imparted knowledge, wit, perspective, sanity/insanity, humanity/inhumanity and more.

        It’s a crying shame that is hopefully reparable.

      • David Doppler
        July 7, 2016, 6:09 pm

        I agree with Mooser, both on ownership, AND value.

        Is anyone else reminded of Phil’s story about never having been “good with money,” having gotten a $20 bill as a gift as a boy, leaving it there with the other wrappings, and then not being able to find it? Wondering if the giver had taken it back to teach him a lesson?

        I have been looking forward to some future book that synthesizes everything, maybe to commemorate a peace deal!

      • Mooser
        July 7, 2016, 6:16 pm

        “I agree with Mooser, both on ownership, AND value.”

        I’m with you. There is high value to the archives. I hope they’re found. I just can’t posit it as involving an obligation.

      • MRW
        July 7, 2016, 9:21 pm

        Mooser,

        At that point, they became the property of Mondo, to either publish, discard, with no obligation to archive.

        You’re mixing apples and oranges. Mondoweiss makes no copyright claim on commenter entries. If it decides to discard and therefore not publish, its prerogative, of course it’s not going to archive.

        But that is not what I am saying. It has offered a database of comment archives by individual commenter for seven years. The initial five archive years have been erased. This year. Without notice. Most of us stupidly assumed they would be retained. And given current de minimus storage costs and settled developer code that can handle this easily, it makes no sense.

        I’m just a teensy bit appalled at the idea that Mondo might have an obligation to me. It don’t.

        I didn’t say Mondoweiss had an obligation to me. I said I and many others made contributions that are as valuable as the blog posts themselves. I’m offering to help pay to get them back.

        I’m saying that contributors like Hostage and others helped make this site extraordinarily valuable for the content of what they wrote. They increased the value of this site. Even the epic fights and from those who were eventually banned.

      • RoHa
        July 7, 2016, 9:44 pm

        “I just can’t posit it as involving an obligation.”

        Perhaps MW does not have an obligation to you in particular, but surely it has one to the human race to make my scintillating and sapient contributions available for the instruction and edification of future generations.

        Oh, and Hostage’s, as well.

      • Mooser
        July 8, 2016, 2:43 pm

        “You’re mixing apples and oranges. Mondoweiss makes no copyright claim on commenter entries.”

        And you are mixing up Mooser and Mondo.
        I, (since you mentioned me) said on what basis I sent in comments.
        I don’t know with what attitude or policy Mondo receives them. Tired resignation, I should think by this time. (“Oh, him again? Oh, Lord, that joke again? Well, it is a ‘hit’, you know. Run it up the flagpole and see who spits on it.”)

    • Peter in SF
      July 8, 2016, 3:02 am

      MRW, thank you for pointing this out and explaining so eloquently why this is a big deal. I don’t read all the comments on this blog, so it’s just by luck that I happened to see your post. Phil or one of the other moderators should really post something about this on the front page. Either that, or some statement below every blog post where comments have disappeared.

      • Annie Robbins
        July 8, 2016, 1:50 pm

        Either that, or some statement below every blog post where comments have disappeared. –

        last night some friends were visiting and we were discussing syria. i recalled the long amazing discussion/argument we had in the ‘do’s and don’ts of progressives’ re syria and all the links in the comment section as people built their cases regarding american intervention in syria and a whole host of things — like the viability of the FSA and the “rebels” — this was during 2013 that crucial time when so many people were in denial that the opposition was for the most part completely controlled by nusra/AQ. it was an amazing thread for several reasons, one being that you can really get a sense of how informed so many of our readers were at that time about syria even while the mainstream was still feeding so many lies to the public (which is still going on as americans are now the target for complicity in an invasion leading up to a hillary neocon presidency). anyway — back to my story — so i grabbed my computer to access many of the links available at that time — many i had linked to but in the 500 plus comment thread so many others had too — and i had forgotten .. i have accessed that page so many time but it was no longer there, only the totally worthless article remained. and anyone accessing that page now would have no idea how the commenters critiqued the information in the article and made mincemeat of the “do’s and don’ts” . no idea whatsoever the pushback received. and i had forgotten how we no longer have archives for that period. what a loss.

        so it’s not only erasing our mondoweiss history, it’s erasing the very kinds of arguments that led americans, during this exact time period, to slam congress at the prospect of obama attacking syria for crossing the neocon “red line” — and this is an important point and something the neocons want totally erased as evidenced by goldbergs “obama doctrine” published this spring. which makes absolutely NO mention of the public being wildly against US intervention/attacking syria. a long long long article w/a video by goldberg hinging the entire future of US military “credibility” re deterrence surrounding his failure to attack syria.
        read here: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/03/goldberg-does-obama/

        anyway, our adversaries would like nothing more than for us to forget. but that comment section is a perfect example of the kinds of considerations americans were having. so 20 years from now when historians mine docs about what led to the 3rd world war (let’s hope not but seriously if we place a no fly zone around syria this could be the result) you will hear nothing from this site whatsoever pushing back against this so called “progressive” view. nothing.

        and my heart sank. every day i access our archives, or used to. they are a goldmine. here, look at this, it stands completely unchallenged > http://mondoweiss.net/2013/08/dos-and-donts-for-progressives-discussing-syria/

        a total shame — a wipeout.

      • BethlehemOlivesRedeem
        July 8, 2016, 2:03 pm

        Yes, MRW, thank You.

        And, silamcuz: Your saying, “I believe most of the older comments in MW contained highly problematic sentiments that are not in line with the true narrative of the conflict, and therefore presented themselves as a liability to the site owners and its patrons.” implies that Phil and Adam intentionally decided to censor the many voices of readers whose presence in this virtual public square are indispensable to Phil and Adam’s journalistic careers. It seems unlikely, to say the least. If anything, the content of the comments — even the trolling snidenesses — lend inestimable value and weight to this site.

        Phil and Adam, please investigate this unfortunate (and hopefully temporary) kidnapping of the majority of mondoweiss’s inhabitants. It’s a skill which you have shown yourself capable of exercising astutely and swiftly when it matters to you how well-informed the people can and should be.
        Well, the people need your prowess now more than ever in this matter of the Comments section (the bulk) of all your posts since you started this site.

        I, for one, have returned again and again to mondoweiss.net — and I told complete strangers to visit it for the first time — much more because of the amazing diversity of voices and the humor, wit, and tenacity of educative pyrotechnics to be found in the Comments section than because of the specific content of the “articles”, op-eds, or formal posts themselves.
        Please, please, please, do due diligence.
        If you do, you will be restoring mondoweiss.net to the greatness and credibility, dignity and honor as a Voice for the Voiceless that it achieved during the 2014 Israeli massacres in Gaza — before the comments started getting censored or “disappeared.”
        Phil, Adam: Wake up.
        Somebody with ill intent, somebody you overlooked, is likely behind this virtual walling off of critical historiography. Don’t forget: The Zionists “never miss an opportunity to exploit an opportunity.” They have had over a half-century head-start on the rest of us in their geostrategic offensive of conquering Palestine for Jews and only Jews.
        (The Holocaust[..], which they diligently exploited during the entirety of Hitler’s 12-year Reich, as Edwin Black, Tom Segev, Ilan Pappe, even Zionist historian Benny Morris and others have documented. Ben-Gurion, remember, preferred seeing half the Jews of Europe perish and the other half colonize Palestine than have all the Jews escape Nazi clutches by emigrating to countries other than Palestine….)
        Please don’t underestimate the profoundly liberatory powers of all that juicy information, and fast-talk/thinking-on-their-feet ideas and archival sources we all were able to tap into thanks to your visitors, that motley crew of various winter soldiers for truth and justice you welcomed hospitably into this widening political space.
        It is a library waiting to be turned into at least one book, if not a series. It’s your call, guys. Do the right thing. Thank You.
        “Our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians.” -Nelson Mandela

      • Boomer
        July 12, 2016, 5:04 pm

        @BethlehemOlivesRedeem, re:

        “And, silamcuz: Your saying, “I believe most of the older comments in MW contained highly problematic sentiments that are not in line with the true narrative of the conflict, and therefore presented themselves as a liability to the site owners and its patrons.” implies that Phil and Adam intentionally decided to censor the many voices of readers whose presence in this virtual public square are indispensable to Phil and Adam’s journalistic careers. It seems unlikely, to say the least. If anything, the content of the comments — even the trolling snidenesses — lend inestimable value and weight to this site.”

        I agree. To me it seems more likely that there is some other reason. But I don’t know. It’s true, some pretty negative comments slipped in, but that’s been part of the territory. We are all adults here.

      • Mooser
        July 12, 2016, 5:22 pm

        “I believe most of the older comments in MW contained highly problematic sentiments that are not in line with the true narrative of the conflict, and therefore presented themselves as a liability to the site owners and its patrons.”

        A “liability to the site owners and its patrons”? You are nuts, not to put too fine a point on it. Because the comments from Zionists are the true ones, and had to be deleted?

        What the f–k kind of a “liability” are they to “the site owners and its patrons”? Do you know what the word “liability” means?
        No one, I would think, can question your lie-ability, “Simalcuz”.

      • Annie Robbins
        July 12, 2016, 5:50 pm

        mooser, as i wrote upthread our adversaries would like nothing more than for us to forget — i’m sure it’s a dream come true for them, and that they agree whole heartedly with simal’s assessment. of course our views are “highly problematic” for israel — that is the point. although shutting out our voices is not as good as shutting down the site altogether — for them it’s the next best thing. it’s really not that hard to figure out whose views he most represents — at all.

      • Mooser
        July 13, 2016, 12:46 am

        “as i wrote upthread our adversaries would like nothing more than for us to forget”

        I’m sort of shocked by it. I thought those things didn’t happen anymore, what with multiple back-ups. And I thought text storage is nearly unlimited.
        But I know the same thing has happened to other sites, they changed format or servers, and a lot of archived comments were lost.
        And what seems to be happening to the current archives (the truncating) is disturbing.

      • Annie Robbins
        July 13, 2016, 3:35 am

        this happened over a year after changing servers. so it’s not just changed format or servers, and a lot of archived comments were lost.

        it was a choice. it could probably be rectified if made a priority.

      • silamcuz
        July 13, 2016, 2:08 am

        Mooser

        A “liability to the site owners and its patrons”? You are nuts, not to put too fine a point on it. Because the comments from Zionists are the true ones, and had to be deleted?

        What the f–k kind of a “liability” are they to “the site owners and its patrons”? Do you know what the word “liability” means?

        Well, this is just my opinion anyway and I obviously don’t know for certain what really happened.

        But remember, these comments were registered to the site when MW was fairly independent and unaffiliated with any major groups or individuals. Back then, everything was under the control of Phil, Adam and Annie and pretty much nobody else.

        But now MW is monetized with ads by private companies in addition to being affiliated with prominent national organisation such as JVP. These changes may have brought into effect a clean-up of the site contents in order to facilitate a more harmonious working relationship between MW and its various commercial and activist partners.

        I know with absolute certainty that JVP would never risk their reputation affiliating with anyone or any group with a sketchy history. And MW of old was seriously sketchy with countless offensive and factually suspect comments passing moderation and being published on the site.

        So my guess is, the site admins simply performed a spring cleaning of the site’s comment section, and in order to save time and money, mass deleted comments with minimal scrutiny. Did Phil or Adam actually explain what happened though?

      • echinococcus
        July 13, 2016, 9:38 am

        Silmacruz,

        But now MW is monetized with ads by private companies in addition to being affiliated with prominent national organisation such as JVP.

        Before smearing MW with terrible accusations like that of being affiliated with JVP, you’d do well to try and provide proof.
        Or make sure to look up words like “affiliation”. I believe that’s not asking too much, even from you.

      • Mooser
        July 13, 2016, 12:15 pm

        That was even stupider, if possible, “Simalcuz”.

        Spin, spin, spin
        To everything,
        there is a season,
        Spin, spin,spin.

      • Mooser
        July 13, 2016, 12:29 pm

        “it was a choice. it could probably be rectified if made a priority”

        That’s what I think, too. The archive files are compressed, shunted, and not accessible to the internet. For whatever reason. They can be found and made accessible. If somebody sets his mind on it.
        It’s gonna take time, a whole lot of precious time. It’s gonna take patience and time! To do it, to do it, to do it, to do it, to do it
        To do it right, child! Not to mention the expense. Gonna take money, a whole lot of spending money, to do it and etc.

      • Mooser
        July 13, 2016, 6:37 pm

        Sorry, I was trying to be cheerful.
        I don’t know why, but I feel the archives will be recovered, in time.

      • silamcuz
        July 13, 2016, 10:29 pm

        Did Phil or Adam make any statements regarding the missing archives? I haven’t been following this topic much, and considering even Annie is unsure of what happened, it would be wise to not speculate and come up with outrageous theories to further an agenda.

        I don’t know why is it stupid to think these archives were simply deleted by the admins themselves Mooser, unless this has been denied by Phil or Adam. In that case, yeah we should look into other alternative theories possibly involving devious actors intent on damaging the site.

      • Annie Robbins
        July 14, 2016, 2:47 am

        it would be wise to not speculate and come up with outrageous theories to further an agenda.

        you mean like this:

        the site admins simply performed a spring cleaning of the site’s comment section, and in order to save time and money, mass deleted comments with minimal scrutiny.

        because that has agenda written all over it. reminds me of http://972mag.com/the-end-of-history-at-israels-state-archives/118541/

        The changes at the State Archives will lead to a serious reduction in the availability and exposure of historical documents, the burying of documents that have already seen the light of day, and conducting historical research in Israel will become far more difficult than it is today, academics and legal experts are warning.

        The new restrictions, which are scheduled to be implemented in the coming days, were formulated behind closed doors and are being presented as a benign digitization project.

        The changes were revealed for the first time at the end of February, when letters began appearing in the State Archives’ viewing room in Jerusalem, announcing “ending the use of paper files.” The letters, signed by State Archivist Yaacov Lozowick, said that the State Archives plans to launch its new website in April and that it will include… (a mere 2.5 percent of the 400 million documents in the archive).

        or do you think it’s possible israel simply “performed a spring cleaning .. in order to save time and money”, by mass deleting archives with minimal scrutiny? uh huh. do you really take us for such fools?

      • silamcuz
        July 14, 2016, 4:06 am

        I’m very well aware of the depth of criminal activities Israel is willing and capable of diving into. For a nation state with zero moral inhibitions or respect for any rule of law, hacking into the servers of a small independent website such as MW would be something almost expected from the government.

        However, logically speaking, we should always start with the simplest, most inane hypothesis when trying to explain any strange events. In this case, comments registered to the site are missing and the simplest hypothesis would obviously be the comments were deleted by the people who run the site, for whatever reasons.

        As such, unless it has been confirmed by Phil or Adam that these deletion occurred without their prior knowledge or approval, we should not construct complicated narratives that are difficult to prove or analyse objectively.

      • Mooser
        July 14, 2016, 3:37 pm

        “However, logically speaking, we should always start with the simplest, most inane hypothesis”

        Gosh, “Silmalcuz”, that makes you the smartest person in the room!

        Anytime I’m looking for “most inane hypothesis” I know right where to go.

      • silamcuz
        July 15, 2016, 1:48 am

        Gosh, “Silmalcuz”, that makes you the smartest person in the room!

        Anytime I’m looking for “most inane hypothesis” I know right where to go.

        Stop this nonsense. Unless Phil or Adam has made any statements on the missing archives, no one has the right to speculate on the security and integrity of the website that Phil and Adam are responsible for.

        If some money is missing from your home drawer, would you not ask your family about it first before thinking you just got robbed and making a big scene? This whole drama about missing comments is so bizarre to me, honestly.

      • Mooser
        July 15, 2016, 12:27 pm

        ,” no one has the right to speculate on the security and integrity of the website that Phil and Adam are responsible for.”

        And certainly, as indicated by your comments on this thread, you would never stoop to that.

        “I believe most of the older comments in MW contained highly problematic sentiments that are not in line with the true narrative of the conflict, and therefore presented themselves as a liability to the site owners and its patrons.” http://mondoweiss.net/2016/07/jewish-entitlement-populism/#comment-169052

        “Stop this nonsense”

        Go ahead, chump. Correct me with an “efficient” and “effective” “old-fashioned slap”. I’m waiting.

        You couldn’t bust na’ar a grape.

      • silamcuz
        July 17, 2016, 7:13 am

        Mooser

        ,” no one has the right to speculate on the security and integrity of the website that Phil and Adam are responsible for.”

        And certainly, as indicated by your comments on this thread, you would never stoop to that.

        “I believe most of the older comments in MW contained highly problematic sentiments that are not in line with the true narrative of the conflict, and therefore presented themselves as a liability to the site owners and its patrons.”-Silamcuz

        Hold on, there are two completely different things going on here.

        I alleged that these comments that are missing were deleted legally through the right of ownership by either Phil or Adam. There is nothing incriminating in suggesting Phil and/or Adam may have used their administrative privileges to remove or preserve material that appear on the site they own. Phil could delete pretty much every single comment if he wishes to and he will be well within his rights in doing so.

        On the other hand, you along with others alleged that these comments were deleted due to malicious outside agents bypassing the site security infrastructure, therefore constructing a case against Phil or Adam’s competency as site owners and administrators.

        In addition, the burden of proof is on you for alleging something that is beyond what is self-evident. We know for a fact that Phil or Adam can and regularly do delete comments as part of their moderation process. However we don’t know if the site is vulnerable to outsiders hacking into it and deleting comments they don’t like.

        So go ahead, please provide proof for your allegations, otherwise they mean nothing.

      • Mooser
        July 17, 2016, 3:05 pm

        “Hold on, there are two completely different things going on here.”

        When you’re around (and around and around and around), there always is. And it’s patently obvious.
        Or, there’s another choice, the one involving insects.

        “On the other hand, you along with others alleged that these comments were deleted due to malicious outside agents bypassing the site security infrastructure,”

        I alleged that? Ho-kay, I’m going with the insects.

      • Annie Robbins
        July 17, 2016, 4:02 pm

        Stop this nonsense. Unless Phil or Adam has made any statements on the missing archives, no one has the right to speculate on the security and integrity of the website that Phil and Adam are responsible for….

        I alleged that these comments that are missing were deleted legally through the right of ownership by either Phil or Adam….

        On the other hand, you along with others alleged that these comments were deleted due to malicious outside agents bypassing the site security infrastructure, therefore constructing a case against Phil or Adam’s competency as site owners and administrators…

        i find it hypocritical a primary ‘speculator’ here, who knows nothing, is lecturing us about ‘rights of speculation’. also, why is he even bringing phil and adam’s “competency” into this conversation as they are not the professional tech people we pay to run this stuff? neither of them run the primary tech for the site. phil probably knows as much about IT stuff as i do which is nothing. and adam forwarded along the archive questions i emailed them to the sites developers — he did not even know they[archives] were gone (nor did phil) until i wrote him at which time he then passed along that info to the developers and they got back to him and then he [adam] informed me what they[developers] said which i mentioned here: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/06/occupation-forwards-standard/#comment-843987

        i heard back from adam and he said the comments were removed (they have them) because we recently had tech problems and the database was part of the problem.

        again, this is what the site developers told him, after the fact of their removal i might add. iow, the site’s developers removed the comments and we found out after the fact.

        think of it as the brain surgeon informing you why a section of your brain is no longer working. and then we have mr not so brilliant here lecturing us (“Stop this nonsense”) about “Phil or Adam’s competency as site owners” — as if they were operating on their own brain — which they are not.

        and there are no “rights of speculation” regarding anything — much less companies with hundreds of employees (like our site developers).

        so if anyone should “stop this nonsense” it should be mr “I alleged that these comments .. are missing were deleted legally through the right of ownership”

        i mean plleeeaaasse!!! and here’s shmuel’s comment on the same thread i just linked to:

        EI said they had a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack a few weeks ago. Now masses of comments missing here.

        The first “targeted civil eliminations” (in the words of Intelligence Minister Yisrael Katz)?

        https://bdsmovement.net/2016/attacks-bds-websites-smack-israels-despair-growing-isolation-14165

        and following that link:

        Attacks on BDS websites smack of Israel’s despair at its growing isolation
        Posted on June 2, 2016 by BNC

        Technical report: recent relentless cyber-attacks on BDSmovement.net website show complex and coordinated attacker

        Israel announced in January 2016 plans to use cyber war against BDS

        Israel’s well-funded cyber war on BDS reflects failure to stop movement’s mainstream growth in recent years

        A technical report issued today by eQualit.ie, a non-profit online security service, uncovers important evidence that the Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks carried out on the main website of the BDS movement and websites of other groups critical of Israel’s occupation and violations of human rights are complex and highly coordinated.

        The advanced technology used in the attacks and the size of the botnets involved may show that Israel was directly involved. Israel has previously stated that it plans to use cyber warfare to undermine the BDS movement.

        The websites of around 6 BDS organizations in North America and Europe also faced denial of service attacks during February and March, at the same time as the BDSmovement.net website was attacked.

        Mahmoud Nawajaa, general coordinator of the Palestinian BDS National Committee, the broadest coalition in Palestinian society that leads the global BDS movement, reacted to the report saying:

        “These latest cyber-attacks against BDS seem to be part of a full-fledged Israeli war on the movement that includes McCarthyite legal repression, use of intelligence services and yet more funding for ‘brand Israel’ propaganda. These attacks smack of Israel’s despair at its growing isolation around the world, after failing for years to stem the growing support for the nonviolent BDS movement as a strategic and effective means to achieve Palestinian rights under international law.”

        and there’s more at the link. so we have every “right to speculate” about what is going on without implicating phil or adam’s “competency” when our adversaries are fully funded in a war against online advocacy for palestinian rights.

      • Mooser
        July 17, 2016, 4:54 pm

        ” the comments were removed (they have them) “

        And can be restored, if desired, at some future date, when they get past the tech problems. That is good. That’s great! I was hoping that was more-or-less what happened.

      • Annie Robbins
        July 18, 2016, 1:26 pm

        i have no idea if they will be restored mooser as i think it may require lots of money or some kind of upgrade or something. needless to say i am despondent about it. it’s hard to fathom our history is gone.

      • MRW
        July 19, 2016, 4:57 pm

        Wonderful solution: if Phil and Adam have the history, produce a DVD of them (a de minimus cost per when mass produced) and sell them for $25 to $50. An outfit near me produces DVDs for $2-$3 for self-publishing musicians, who are not flush with cash, and even mails out the orders for an additional fee…something under a dollar. They don’t produce all the DVDs at once. They are on an as-ordered basis. Headache-free for the musician.

        Use as a fund-raiser for phuck’s sake. So instead of costing money to repair this disaster, make money off what you’ve got. And those of us who want to can donate an extra copy or two to the local library.

      • MRW
        July 19, 2016, 5:10 pm

        as i think it may require lots of money or some kind of upgrade or something.

        Not a chance. Someone is being bamboozled. I PDF’d Hostage’s comments up until a couple of years ago–a few hundred PDF pages–and the total storage amount was 10 MB. That’s bupkes. Zero-insky.

        It was absolutely incumbent upon the tech guys to have redundant backup. That is what Phil and Adam pay for! Google’s Blogger app gives you better protection and backup. Can’t handle a leetle database? Gimme a fucking break. That’s like saying a a bicycle wheel can’t handle painted spokes.

        Phil and Adam signed off on certain blog features, and agreed to pay a certain price for them. And these techos can’t deliver all of a sudden in the middle of the night with no warning? As Jack Nicholson said, “Go sell stupid someplace else.”

      • Annie Robbins
        July 19, 2016, 11:37 pm

        As Jack Nicholson said, “Go sell stupid someplace else.”

        hmm. very interesting. adam mentioned below “We’re trying to determine whether we’ll be able to stay with our current web host, or whether we’ll have to move to a different service (which would entail a much greater expense). ” i find this all very confusing. thanks mrw.

    • Adam Horowitz
      July 18, 2016, 1:41 pm

      Hi everyone,

      Sorry, just seeing this now. I really apologize about the confusion and agree we should have been in touch about it sooner. I’ve been working on getting it fixed.

      If you remember a few weeks ago the site was up and down for a few days. At that time older parts of the archives were taken offline to lessen the load on the servers which were getting overworked. No comments have been lost. I just want to make that clear. I know everyone still wants access to all their comments, and we’re working to get that back up and running, but we still have everything.

      We’re trying to determine whether we’ll be able to stay with our current web host, or whether we’ll have to move to a different service (which would entail a much greater expense). Of course we will do that if it’s necessary, but we’ve been trying to figure this out with our current host first. I hope we have this resolved soon, but it might not be for another month or so before everything is back.

      Again apologies for the confusion and for the lack of information. If you have any questions or just want to share your thoughts with me about this you can always reach me at [email protected]. That is always the best way to reach me and you should never hesitate to do so. I’ll respond as quickly as I can.

      Thanks for your understanding,

      Adam

      • Mooser
        July 18, 2016, 1:53 pm

        Thanks very much for the explanation about the comments, Adam.
        I was envisioning every kind of disaster or nefarious plot.
        This is a lot better than I expected, but I can see it may take awhile to resolve, and get them back online.
        Thanks again.

      • Adam Horowitz
        July 18, 2016, 2:03 pm

        The next steps are going to be trying to bring back comments year by year and see how the server responds. We’ll start that later this week and I’ll post here about it. If that doesn’t work we’ll be looking to move.

      • eljay
        July 18, 2016, 2:06 pm

        || Mooser: Thanks very much for the explanation about the comments, Adam. … ||

        +1. Good to know that it’s just a temporary absence and not a permanent loss.

      • Annie Robbins
        July 18, 2016, 2:19 pm

        (which would entail a much greater expense)…..If that doesn’t work we’ll be looking to move.

        thanks adam, it’s so like you to try resolving this during a fundraising campaign and not even once mention this enormous expense in any of our fundraising appeals. i can’t emphasize how important our comment threads are to the history of our movement. the voices of our readers are such a vital part of who we are.

        i know this is an old thread and the chances of very many people reading it is slim. therefore (surprise) i have posted this comment on top of our new fundraising thread:

        Annie Robbins July 18, 2016, 1:59 pm

        i just donated the equivalence of my monthly paycheck (minus taxes) for the restoration of our archives.

        thanks for all your efforts tova.

        – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/07/use-of-funds/#sthash.PePv3r5f.dpuf

        and i will gladly do this every month until they are fully restored.

      • Mooser
        July 18, 2016, 2:54 pm

        I guess my invocation of the George Harrison tune wasn’t so dumb after all!

      • Annie Robbins
        July 18, 2016, 3:14 pm

        ha! it was perfect mooser!

      • Mooser
        July 18, 2016, 4:28 pm

        “We’ll start that later this week”

        If an underscore can throw the system for a loop, it’s very vulnerable.

      • Boomer
        July 19, 2016, 7:19 pm

        Adam, thanks for the explanation. As far as I’m concerned, there’s no rush. Obviously you have a lot to do.

      • MRW
        July 19, 2016, 7:21 pm

        Thank you, Adam.

        [I didn’t see your comments before replying today.]

      • Mooser
        July 19, 2016, 7:48 pm

        So it’s not recording or storing all the archives which is either expensive or problematic, it is making the complete archives internet-accessible at all times which strains or overloads your current provider?
        Did you ever expect to have so much of it? It sure grew some.

      • MRW
        July 19, 2016, 10:56 pm

        So it’s not recording or storing all the archives which is either expensive or problematic, it is making the complete archives internet-accessible at all times which strains or overloads your current provider?
        Did you ever expect to have so much of it? It sure grew some.

        Uhhh, Mooser, a typical small e-commerce site has more data-access traffic than MW on any given day or in any week or month.

        All products and product photo shots (full-size and thumbnail) take up massively more storage space–just for starters–than a text-based site like MW does even with 10 years worth of comments.

        All products and photo shots are entered in a database, along with a text description. Typical for all product sites on the web, even your local web-based hardware or gardening store. This technology was perfected years ago. They plug in the coding module and customize it (they don’t re-invent the wheel).

        Accessing the data is a search function, and that tech is decades old; Google, Amazon, Yahoo, MySpace, WordPress, a lot of defunct companies, and the social media sites did the job of perfecting it for everyone.

        Furthermore, a relational database is like a series of closets. You open the door and take out what you want. In MW’s case, each commenter–the unique record–is one closet. Since the past (the archive) doesn’t change, nothing is being altered, just new stuff added. Big whoop.

      • Mooser
        July 20, 2016, 1:45 pm

        “Uhhh, Mooser, a typical small e-commerce site has more data-access traffic than MW”

        Maybe it’s different for a profit-making business, when clicks can mean sales? (Shipped direct from a distributor, no store to stock)

        At any rate, if Mondo is being bamboozled with techno-speak and over-charged for internet services, you should get in touch with them and offer advice. I thought Phil ganged up some old Dells and Macs, and ran the entire thing out of his garage. (On the same circuit as the gro-lights, probably, which slows the thing to a crawl.)

  4. MRW
    July 7, 2016, 2:13 pm

    More thoughtful Jews need to wrest the Jewish future away from the Aspen Ideas Festival, and remedy elitism with humility. That means cutting down the power of the lobby, and allowing Americans to wake to the persecution of Palestinians.

    Amen.

    We need to hear more Primo Levi voices from the American Jewish community, not these ignorant knee-jerk studs who are basically dual-loyaltists and who think popular American opinion can be derided without consequence. Dream on, freiers. Dream on.

    See the always thoughtful David Shasha’s excellent recent post here about the difference:
    Elie Wiesel and Primo Levi: A study in contrasts
    http://mondoweiss.net/2016/07/wiesel-primo-contrasts/

  5. Atlantaiconoclast
    July 7, 2016, 2:35 pm

    Phillip, I greatly appreciate your comments in this article. It takes such courage for you and other Jews to speak out about this issue. I just hope other Jews like yourself realize that it is even harder for Gentiles to speak out about this issue. There is virtually no way for us to talk about this issue without being accused by someone of being “anti Semitic,” or spreading a “blood libel.” It gets old.

    • JWalters
      July 7, 2016, 7:46 pm

      Agree on Phil’s bravery. Non-Jews need to arm themselves with facts, so they can call the bullying “anti-Semite” accusation what it is and back it up. But I agree, the level of organized harassment can be oppressive.

    • BethlehemOlivesRedeem
      July 8, 2016, 2:12 pm

      Reminds me of Mark Braverman and his talks in churches, urging Christians to incarnate their theologies in spite of any lingering guilt or shame over the Western nations’ failure to have unlimited quotas for Jews and others seeking escape from the Nazi leviathan. It’s advisable we all deeply and self-critically examine lingering traces of tribalism in our editorial decision-making. I’ve noticed some Jewish writers on this site have greater freedom in criticizing other Jews than non-Jewish writers have exercised. Self-censorship out of fear of being called anti-“S”emitic is understandable, but let’s get over it, folks. The state of Israel is explicitly racist (Jewish-supremacist) and openly fascistic in its apartheid dual-track legal system that flouts international law, and makes a mockery of its own legitimacy by violating international conventions it signed onto, as if a nudge-and-wink and knife-in-the-back were God’s explicit command to “the children of Israel.”

  6. just
    July 7, 2016, 2:49 pm

    Good grief~ how and why is this happening in the USA? I guess that it’s a positive thing that it’s being exposed… thanks, Phil. What now? You write that:

    “More thoughtful Jews need to wrest the Jewish future away from the Aspen Ideas Festival, and remedy elitism with humility.”

    Agreed, though I would much prefer to see more thoughtful Americans and humans of all stripes involved in this ‘remedy’.

    (thank you MRW and annie for the conversation and follow- up wrt to the lost archives)

  7. bryan
    July 7, 2016, 3:28 pm

    PW: “Dismissing populism as ignorance is both incurious and dangerous.”

    Well why not take a lead from your President, who for all his numerous failings, can call a spade a shovel: despite the media’s eagerness to label this as ranting: see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PYNf3Bev628 for an eloquent espousal of the virtues of genuine populism.

    Interesting code here regarding the need for transparency and what commitment to advancing the interests of ordinary people entails (a drubbing of an unnamed Republican who has never sought to advance anyone’s interests but his own, an endorsement of Sanders’ credentials and no reference to HC.

    • MRW
      July 7, 2016, 4:23 pm

      Bryan,

      He talked a good game in that youtube and spouted platitudes about what he thought the hoi polloi should have (education, child healthcare, fair taxes) but he had eight years in office to accomplish it, but didn’t.

      I’m not going to go into macroeconomic possibilities and policies, but this guy had the power to effect those goals. He didn’t.

      He had time to get knowledgeable people to educate him about how the federal monetary system works, as opposed to the non-federal government private sector, but didn’t.

      The US federal government creates its on currency. The non-federal government private sector does not; it has to earn or borrow it from commercial banks or credit unions.

      The US federal government is not run like households, which have to pay back debts at interest on a strict time schedule after putting up collateral or a down payment. The US federal government has no such restriction. Obama doesn’t know that.

      The accountant and economist worker bees deep in the bowels of the US Treasury or Federal Reserve know this because they account for federal money issuance (misnamed ”public debt”) because it is recorded–‘accounted for’–on the right side of the accounting ledger under Liabilities. Where else is it going to go? What the federal government is buying goes on the left under Assets, be it an airplane, federal government office supplies, or federal park maintenance workers.

      Obama’s definition of populism is out of touch with what the US populace is saying. He may come across to some as a great vision guy, but as Texas governor Greg Abbott wrote recently, “JFK wanted to send a man to the moon. Obama wants to send a man to the women’s restroom.”

  8. lysias
    July 7, 2016, 5:18 pm

    Three of the four Dem appointments to the Supreme Court are Jewish. The fourth, Sotomayor, is a nominal Catholic. (I’ve read she’s not a churchgoer.) The new nominee Garland would become the fourth Jewish justice if confirmed. All four of the Republican appointments — five before Scalia died — are Catholic. No Protestants. Stevens was the last one.

    I’m Catholic, and I find this troubling. Imagine the reaction if the five Catholic Republican appointees while Scalia was still alive had overruled Roe v. Wade.

    • JWalters
      July 7, 2016, 7:42 pm

      I imagine there’s a lot of insider lobbying over Supreme Court appointments. Who are the insiders, and what is the nature of their clout?

      • Lasher
        July 11, 2016, 8:09 pm

        AIPAC. Bribery and blackmail.

  9. Keith
    July 7, 2016, 5:44 pm

    PHIL- (Quoting Leon Wieseltier)- “If Merrick Garland is appointed to the Supreme Court, there will be four Jews on it. Eventually, there won’t be any goyim.”

    A distraction from where real power lies. How about joking about the Federal Reserve System and finance in general. In capitalism, money is power.

    PHIL- “We’re like the WASPs were in the establishment in the 1960s….”

    Much more powerful, I should think. WASPs refers to the non-Jewish East Coast elites who also happened to be WASPs. I am unaware that these elites had any significant support among the less privileged members of the White, Anglo-Saxon community. Surely, nothing to compare to the Conference of Presidents of the Major American Jewish Organizations. I fail to see a WASP version of the tight tribal solidarity of Judeo-Zionism. Or the focused organization. The harsh reality is that the Zionists have largely succeeded in resurrecting the “us” versus “them” mentality of medieval Judaism, albeit in a less visually obvious mode. This “is it good for the Jews?” mindset is the tradition which some commenters seek to recapture and preserve.

    PHIL- “…precipitate another Holocaust.”

    A Holocaust of Jews in America is inconceivable. However, a lot of Black men are being killed by the police. Throw in Muslims and non-white immigrants and the racist ravings of Pam Geller and her ilk and there could be significant violence, but not against the Askenazi. Speaking of which, I think that Black men should all begin wearing yarmulkes in self defense. Those cops would think twice before shooting a Jew. If yarmulkes proliferated, how long before impersonating a Jew became a crime?

    PHIL- “It has always been my contention that honesty about the Jewish role in the establishment is not going to spark another Holocaust: because history doesn’t repeat itself, because people already know about that presence….”

    I seriously doubt that most Americans have even the vaguest idea of either Jewish power or Jewish identity. Before Mondoweiss, I had no idea that Larry Summers, Dennis Ross, Martin Indyk, Janet Yellen or Merrick Garland are Jewish. I think that most Americans would be shocked at the Judaization of the imperial elite. How they would feel about that is another matter. In any event, little would change, Jews hardly in danger.

    PHIL- “Emily Bazelon spoke at the conference; the Yale scholar who has admitted that she has a “Zionist core” only consults Jews on foreign policy questions….”

    Yet, there are those commenters who will deny that there is such a thing as a Jewish bias.

    PHIL- “I understand the Jewish tradition of being wary of populists. This is because Jews have, like it or not, been linked to western elites in the last 150 years; and populist resentment of those elites fed anti-Semitism and helped to create the Jewish question in Europe.”

    Many (most?) pogroms in reality peasant uprisings? Sounds like something Israel Shahak would say. In his book “The Fatal Embrace,” Benjamin Ginsberg maintains that much anti-Semitism can be explained by the relationship of Jews and the state (also Hannah Arendt’s claim). That is, they find themselves on the side of the state against the lower classes. I would suggest that Ginsberg should substitute “centers of power” for “state.” This ongoing dynamic struggle for power during turbulent, violent times surely explains the root of much of the conflict. And the Jewish tribal solidarity in opposition to the majority of the lower classes would cause the Jews to be seen as a group rather than as individuals. One thing should be clear. The folks gathered at the Aspen Ideas Festival are part of the elite and intend to stay there, the 99% viewed primarily as a threat to their power and privilege.

    • Mooser
      July 7, 2016, 6:10 pm

      “It has always been my contention that honesty about the Jewish role in the establishment is not going to spark another Holocaust”

      Hopefully, under the system of law and constitutional rights in the US that can’t happen. But a social change, a change in the way Judaism, Jews, Jewishness, whatever you want to call it, is perceived, can happen.

      • MRW
        July 7, 2016, 11:49 pm

        Holocaust, Mooser? Never, not ever. Not in this century.

        An uncomfortable backlash against Jews? Might happen. Lots of triggers could stoke various groups. Although those leading the backlash wouldn’t call it uncomfortable; they would call it an expression of their rights. Danaa has written quite eloquently what happens to people when they aren’t listened to, when their opinions are denigrated and forced to submerge. Trump’s popularity is proof of that.

        A raging backlash against Jews, equal to what’s happening to Muslims in this country? Could. But what would spark it? It wouldn’t come out of left field.

      • JWalters
        July 8, 2016, 1:59 am

        I agree a blanket persecution of Jews, or any ethnic group, will not happen in the modern U.S., even if some people wished it. There is the Constitution as you say. And freedom of religion has become firmly entrenched in America. Any type of ethnic bigotry is immediately met with resistance from many quarters, and that is amplified by the pervasive media technology. Witness the relatively ineffective attempts to demonize Muslims. Most people are very aware that ethnic groups are not monolithic. The existence of anti-Zionist Jewish groups is clear evidence of that fact. Even if it turned out there was gang of murderous Jewish criminals, most people would not assume all Jews belonged to that gang.

      • Mooser
        July 14, 2016, 11:58 pm

        “Although those leading the backlash wouldn’t call it uncomfortable”

        I don’t think it will be “lead” in any way. It will be the result of choices people are free to make, social choices, which can be made without being discriminatory or violent. It will be driven by the depreciation of Zionism as a social asset, and by the way Jews feel about that depreciation and themselves.

    • RoHa
      July 7, 2016, 11:45 pm

      “This is because Jews have, like it or not, been linked to western elites in the last 150 years”

      Hold hard there! Didn’t Yonah just tell us that, up until about the last twenty minutes, Jews were powerless, and could only stand around in picturesque little groups, singing “Va, pensiero” from Nabucco?

      • Emory Riddle
        July 8, 2016, 10:56 am

        I agree a blanket persecution of any ethnic group, will not happen in the modern U.S., even if some people wished it. –

        What? What do you call what’s being done to the Muslims? How about African Americans? Native Peoples?

    • Pixel
      July 8, 2016, 12:18 am

      Excellent comment, Keith.

  10. yourstruly
    July 8, 2016, 2:40 am

    Isn’t it more accurate to say the Jewish elite’s tradition of being wary of populists, rather than, as Phil puts its, the “Jewish tradition of being wary of populists”, After all even during the days of Europe’s shtetls, how many Jews were in positions of power, compared to those working in the fields or scraping out a living in small towns? True, until recently most Jews, non-elite as well as elite, have sided with Zionist Israel. That’s still the case but the rapid growth of anti-Zionist organizations such as Jewish Voices for Peace suggests that show-down time may not be far off. What’s more the Jewish elite’s fear of populism is shared by the non-Jewish elite’s fear of same, perhaps not on the issue if P/I but on other issues (income disparity, racism, cost of education and health care, global warming, etc etc) where the 99% (especially its youth and minorities) is challenging the 1%.

    • silamcuz
      July 8, 2016, 4:49 am

      People are starting to actually be affected from the oppressive systems that have been firm in place for over 500 years since the start of capitalism and white supremacy in Europe. Those who were the victims, or more accurately the foes of this system have long recognized its evil, and have valiantly fought against it despite suffering untold amount of death and destruction to their own societies.

      The first who actively fought these folks were the Islamic Moors of Iberia, and despite their inability to stop the tide of white supremacy, they never gave into it. They never acknowledged the superiority of whites over blacks, nor Christians over Jews or Muslims. This is the core reason why Islam is the central foe of all white supremacist beliefs, including Americanism, English nationalism and off course, Zionism.

      White people never had any reason apart from a sense of great empathy and a belief in a higher power that watches over all with great justice, to go against their rulers. White privilege were seriously something no one in the world have been fortunate to experience up until now.

      When most people had to toil for generations for an opportunity to own a home, whites were owning huge houses in beautiful neighbourhoods just from a few years of sweatless labour. Imagine refusing a fortune never seen in the history of humanity for intangible, poofy concepts of equality, justice and peace. The whites of history had no chance, but now they are seeing the true price of their past privilege and it doesn’t seem to be worth as much as it used to be.

      • Mooser
        July 8, 2016, 10:49 pm

        Well, one page of your archive is gone, or seems to be, but who can tell anymore?

      • silamcuz
        July 9, 2016, 7:02 am

        Stop derailing the conversation.

      • Mooser
        July 9, 2016, 2:24 pm

        “Stop derailing the conversation.”

        Dude, you are clinical. Bug-fuck nuts, and I’ve run out of patience with your completely phony and disgusting charade.

        Go ahead, set me straight with one of your “effective” and “efficient” “good old fashioned slaps”.

      • silamcuz
        July 14, 2016, 6:05 am

        “Dude, you are clinical. Bug-fuck nuts, and I’ve run out of patience with your completely phony and disgusting charade. “

        I believe in pursuing positivity and place ultimate trust in a higher power that watches over you along with everyone else. This allows me to go through my days without succumbing to fits of rage and hatred you consistently display through your words. Dude why are you so angry? Why not just relax and enjoy the life you were blessed with while you can? You never know when it can be taken away from you so please cherish every moment, wherever you may be.

        We will all end up being fertilizer of sorts anyways, so let’s just get over ourselves and give into the roles nature set for us.

      • Mooser
        July 14, 2016, 3:47 pm

        “So let’s just get over ourselves and give into the roles nature set for us.”

        So, as a “social activist” you advise us all to slip into “the roles nature set for us”?

        Couldn’t wait to prove I was right, could you? Thanks.

      • gamal
        July 15, 2016, 12:45 am

        “stop derailing the conversation.”

        Mooser fucked me up but the rev cheeks wants to come down in the grave with me,

        Mooser Cheeks is my thing now, the Nightingales we can discuss.

        “who is going in the grave with me” no trigger warning in the real world. I have no way to express my gratitude to everyone so i prefer insolence. Cheeks is the best

        https://youtu.be/AyE5tgYvRYU

      • silamcuz
        July 15, 2016, 5:42 am

        “So, as a “social activist” you advise us all to slip into “the roles nature set for us”? ”

        Yeah pretty much. We live in this capitalistic world that demand us to justify every part of our existence in term of monetary value, when the only justification we need is between us and nature. Capitalists didn’t invent the laws of gravity, thermodynamics, the replication of DNA, nutrition, love, war, sex or or pretty much anything that actually matters in life. Yet for some reasons we shape our entire life to conform to the capitalist ideals, from how we speak, to how we eat, how we think…everything! Like zoo animals, only unlike those poor creatures, we don’t even realize that we are in a zoo.

        Who are you living your life for Mooser?

      • Mooser
        July 15, 2016, 11:38 am

        “Cheeks is the best”

        Oh yes. Rev Cheeks was great. But Gospel quartets can have long, long lifespans, and replacing singers who pass and continuing the life of the group is important.
        I like that Gospel music includes the voices of older people, not just youth.

      • Mooser
        July 15, 2016, 11:48 am

        “Yeah pretty much.”

        Okay, then, it is obvious, natural and right that you should be the servant, and I the master.
        Nature says so, and that’s how it’s always been. Too bad for you, good for me. Which of course, is only natural.

        You could try slapping me.

  11. Peter in SF
    July 8, 2016, 2:56 am

    David Brooks’s son also served in the Israeli army.

    Yes, and let’s not forget that it was at the Aspen Ideas Festival two years ago that Brooks revealed this. His interview had been public on YouTube for over 2 months before any of us found out about it:
    http://mondoweiss.net/2014/09/surprise-brookss-israeli/#comment-711966
    So it’s good to see that Phil has learned the lesson that the AIF is worth monitoring. :-)

    It has always been my contention that honesty about the Jewish role in the establishment is not going to spark another Holocaust: because history doesn’t repeat itself, because people already know about that presence, and because Americans have a right to discuss the sociological character of elites, especially if those elites are influencing Middle East policy

    A common complaint I’ve heard about Alison Weir from Jewish pro-Palestinian activists (and I mean real pro-Palestinian activists: anti-Zionist, pro-BDS) is that she calls out who is Jewish among prominent members of American elites. The activists say that doing so is unfair, because Jewish elites are first and foremost members of the elite, not representative of Jews in general and not exercising their power on behalf of Jews in general, but on behalf of their own elite interests. The activists worry that when non-Jews find out that so many of these powerful people are Jewish, they will take out their resentment on all Jews — a familiar pattern in history. Now this complaint about Weir didn’t make it into JVP’s announcement about why they won’t work with her, because they know that if there ever is an argument about whether Jewish influence among elites in the United States is pernicious, if you have to tell your opponent that she’s not allowed to point out exactly who is Jewish among American elites, then you’ve lost the argument. Anyone who’s taken any kind of diversity training/indoctrination/education is familiar with the idea that when an institution is controlled by (say) men who are white, straight, Anglo-Saxon, Protestant, and upper-class, that background will influence their decisions, even when they are trying to be as fair as possible. And so it is with other groups. Saying “their being Jewish doesn’t influence their decision-making as much as their being elite does” makes as little sense as substituting “white men” for “Jewish”.

    • David Plimpton
      July 9, 2016, 11:13 am

      Peter in SF, exactly right about Alison Weir and other non-Jewish and non-Zionist voices. But as someone who is 13/16 non-Jewish, I’ll go further and say that the thing JVP and most other Jewish and Zionist voices are concerned about deep down is not so much resentment or antisemitism.

      Rather, it is worry that many people will connect the dots and see that continued unquestioned support for Israel, without negotiation which takes into account the interests of the U.S. in general and the Palestinians, could end up threatening the Jewish homeland which is so precious to Jewish and Zionist interests, in some cases more precious than the the U.S.’s security.

      That threat would actually be an appropriate negotiating tool for the U.S. which must look to its interests first. No country in the world, not even the “exceptional” U.S. and the “exceptional” Israel, have the right to exist. Rather they can perhaps manage to survive if they act in their own best long run interest. We are enabling Israel to avoid having to do that, even helping it thrive, because it is not held accountable for its actions. We could tell Israel it can either go it alone or stop acting in a way which actually harms our interests, home and abroad. It could allow the right to return, bulldoze and reclaim the settler’s criminal thefts of Palestinian lands, require reparations, and with an international effort, end up with reasonable security for Israel and a new Palestine.

      Israel might decide to go it alone, but then we should take some of the money we’re sending to Israel and guarantee the security and rebuilding of Gaze and the West Bank. We might even have some money left over.

      • Mooser
        July 9, 2016, 2:32 pm

        “But as someone who is 13/16 non-Jewish”

        Yeah, but it’s the remaining 3/16s which’ll get ya. But isn’t that how it goes? Both are irreducible fractions.

  12. hophmi
    July 8, 2016, 10:10 am

    Keith was permitted to write about the “Judaization of the imperial elite” on a site that supposedly does not allow antisemitism.

    The moderators here must be very confused people

    Disgusting.

    • Peter in SF
      July 8, 2016, 1:54 pm

      I think you are the one who is confused, because Phil has written about exactly the same thing, including in the post above. Is your objection to the specific words that Keith used?

      Over the years on this site you’ve proven yourself what a poor judge of antisemitism you are:
      http://mondoweiss.net/profile/hophmi/?keyword=antisemitism

      • hophmi
        July 8, 2016, 7:48 pm

        Even Phil, who writes about the proliferation of Jews in the Establishment, can, I think understand the obviously bigotry engendered in a term like Judaization of the elite, much as his writing seems like a dog whistle for bigots like Keith.

      • Mooser
        July 8, 2016, 10:38 pm

        “I think understand the obviously bigotry engendered in a term like Judaization of the elite, much as…”

        Learn to write a compound sentence would’ya, please? And try to get your suffix’s in order.

      • Keith
        July 9, 2016, 1:01 am

        HOPHMI- “…much as his writing seems like a dog whistle for bigots like Keith.”

        Have you no shame? Does your tribal loyalty mean the abandonment of even an ounce of intellectual integrity? What do you do other than engage in tribalistic ritual incantations? You are the consummate Zionist cadre. Zionism uber alles! Reality anti-Semitic!

    • Mooser
      July 8, 2016, 10:45 pm

      “The moderators here must be very confused people”

      I doubt it. They very likely tittered, and said “That one is gonna yank “Hophmi’s” little chain. Push ‘publish’ and we’ll watch him jump.”

      • Lasher
        July 11, 2016, 8:37 pm

        Mooser, you need to get your spelling of the word “suffixes” in order, old sport.

      • Mooser
        July 12, 2016, 11:25 am

        “Mooser, you need to get your spelling of the word “suffixes” in order, old sport”

        Right you are. my spelling is wrong. Let me see: suffix’s !! My Spel-Chek doesn’t say it’s wrong, but as you say, it is wrong. And I didn’t check, tho I had my doubts. “Suffixes” is correct.

    • RoHa
      July 9, 2016, 6:16 am

      Hope I, what makes that phrase anti-Semitic? To me it just seems like a factual claim that is either true or false. What am I missing? Could you spell it out, please?

      • RoHa
        July 9, 2016, 9:15 am

        Hophmi, not hope I. Software again.

      • RoHa
        July 11, 2016, 1:45 am

        Hmmn. Hophmi is clearly too busy to explain why the phrase is anti-Semitic, even though he would love to.

        Can anyone else help him out?

      • hophmi
        July 11, 2016, 12:21 pm

        You really need an explanation for why the phrase “the Islamicization of the Imperial elite” is Islamophobic?

      • RoHa
        July 11, 2016, 10:31 pm

        “You really need an explanation for why the phrase “the Islamicization of the Imperial elite” is Islamophobic?”

        Yes.

        And I would need an explanation for why “the Christianization of the Imperial elite” is anti-Christian, “the secularization of the Imperial elite” is anti-secular, “the Cymricization of the Imperial elite*” is anti-Welsh, and so forth.

        Pretending it is obvious just doesn’t cut it. If you can’t say why these phrases are anti-X, it leads me to suspect that you don’t know.

        It leads me to suspect that you are just imagining slurs where none exist,

        (*http://wales.politics.general.narkive.com/gpJTMN67/plot-to-cymricize-new-york)

      • Keith
        July 12, 2016, 10:34 am

        HOPHMI- “You really need an explanation for why the phrase “the Islamicization of the Imperial elite” is Islamophobic?”

        The “Islamicization of the imperial elite” is a ludicrous statement contradicted by empirical reality. Are Sheldon Adelson and Haim Saban Muslims? Is AIPAC a Muslim organization? Have the last three Federal Reserve Chairmen been Muslims? Is Hollywood a bastion of Muslim power and bias? Are we inundated with films on the Nakba? Nakba education and museums? Is US foreign policy demonstrably biased in favor of the Palestinians? Do US Presidential candidates prostate themselves in front of Muslim organizations pledging unfailing loyalty to Muslims? Muslim Iraq, Libya and Syria’s right to exist? Etc, etc, etc.

        Is the phrase “the Judaization of the imperial elite” an irrational observation born of bias or is it a brief and concise way of describing the rapid increase of Jewish Zionist power among the ruling elites? Have you never heard of the ever increasing Jewish settlements in the occupied territories described as the Judaization of the Galilee?

        You are fundamentally an anti-intellectual Zionist attack dog who has dedicated himself to attempting to scuttle any discussion of the power dynamics of the global political economy and of Zionism’s role in influencing the course of events in our changing world.

      • hophmi
        July 12, 2016, 10:57 am

        How about the Aboriginization of the Australian Elite? You need an explanation for that as well?

      • Keith
        July 12, 2016, 12:06 pm

        HOPHMI- “How about the Aboriginization of the Australian Elite?”

        Even more preposterous than Islamicization of the imperial elite. Is there no bottom to your barrel? Has your Judeocentric Zionist ideology completely blinded you to the world around you? The Aborigines of Australia continue to suffer real discrimination and abuse, not the relatively minor stuff blown out of proportion by an ideology of eternal victimhood. You would know this if you read John Pilger. Why do you continue to intellectually debase yourself?

      • RoHa
        July 13, 2016, 2:49 am

        “How about the Aboriginization of the Australian Elite? You need an explanation for that as well?”

        Yes, of course.

        Can you or can’t you explain?

      • RoHa
        July 14, 2016, 8:55 pm

        This explanation is going to be good. I can tell by the fact that hophmi is stalling. He wants to take the time to craft a perfectly argued case that will resolve all my doubts. I’m eager to see it.

      • Annie Robbins
        July 15, 2016, 12:11 am

        he’s too busy on another thread making more anti semitism allegations based on what he claims phil “suggests” to answer you.

  13. sawah
    July 8, 2016, 1:05 pm

    If the archives are lost, it is a blow to Mondoweiss. Mondoweiss articles themselves have shown the importance of comment sections, i.e. NYT. I hope this doesnt damper visits to the site,

  14. yonah fredman
    July 13, 2016, 8:34 am

    off topic. those of you who hate jewish navel gazing will hate this. and plus this is brought by shmuel rosner a man whom this site really dislikes. but it asks an interesting question: regarding the contradiction between jewishness and liberalism.
    http://www.jewishjournal.com/rosnersdomain/item/can_you_be_jewish_and_liberal_the_evidence_says_not_so_easy

    • eljay
      July 13, 2016, 8:52 am

      || yonah fredman: … link to jewishjournal.com ||

      Meh.

      … Why is it so difficult to seriously discusses these numbers and this reality? That’s simple: because often times liberal Jews tend to value their “liberalism” more than they value their “Jewishness” (this is me speaking, not Cohen. I am not sure he’d agree). … So the obvious policy of Jewish leaders and institutions is to avoid this seeming contradiction – to hide it for as long as possible and thus not force the choice on a growing group of Jewish liberals. …

      Why should anyone have to “force a choice” upon Jewish liberals?

      … It is good not to force this choice on liberal Jews, because it is a false choice (somewhat similar to the one often forced on Israel between Jewishness and democracy). …

      A person can simultaneously be both Jewish and liberal. S/he does not have to choose between one or the other.

      Israel cannot simultaneously be both…
      – the secular and democratic Israeli state of and for all of its Israeli citizens, immigrants, expats and refugees, equally; and
      – a religion-supremacist “Jewish State” primarily of and for Jewish Israelis and non-Israeli Jews.

      Israel must choose between one or the other.

      • echinococcus
        July 13, 2016, 1:11 pm

        Eljay,
        “A person can be simultaneously jewish and liberal…”
        Yeah, by definition being librul-Zionist is the easiest ro bring both”Jewish”, whatever that is, and Liberal, i.e. one who must do some bellyaching about the worst excesses only –no need for justice– before giving in and laying down to die. Senator Sanders seems to be the most illustrative recent case.

    • Mooser
      July 13, 2016, 1:15 pm

      .” but it asks an interesting question: regarding the contradiction between jewishness and liberalism.”

      Isn’t this nice? I guess “Yonah” isn’t satisfied with our ‘Poddy training’, so he has brought us another “seminal essay”.

      It’s always fun to come here in the morning and see what nocturnal emissions “Yonah” has left us.

  15. lonely rico
    July 18, 2016, 1:32 pm

    > Keith

    You are fundamentally an anti-intellectual Zionist attack dog …

    hofmee (seemingly) at rest –

    http://iheartdogs.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/bulldog-sleep.jpg

    Well concealed, his mind is in a frenzy of plans for his next assault!
    WATCH YOUR ASS KEITH

    WRT the missing archives, no news from Phil, Adam, Scott ?

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