Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 47 (since 2015-06-26 14:59:39)

Tova Perlmutter

Tova Perlmutter is Mondoweiss’s Director of Development and Outreach, Tova’s responsibility is to increase income, but also to help connect the members of our community in useful and rewarding ways.

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  • Why they fear the truth
    • We received your gift, Elizabeth, and we're really grateful! (I hope you got your acknowledgment already?)

      Thanks as well for these two revealing anecdotes. I agree, we are seeing real change. It is painful for those who have resolutely kept their eyes averted... I think we're finally succeeding in making (at least some) people see what they wish they didn't have to. And you're absolutely right about the sophistication (and cynicism) of the "professional Jews."

  • What does it take to support excellent journalism in Israel/Palestine?
    • Tova Perlmutter July 6, 2017 at 1:52 pm

      Thank you so much, Eva! I am particularly touched when folks who have known us for years and years give us their vote of confidence.

  • Israel's attempts to silence truth show our reporting makes a difference
    • Autonomous ethical agent FTW! And I hope you'll put the enclosed sticker in a prominent place to spark questions from others so you can sing MW's praises. Thanks for your gift, Martin.

    • Thank you, eljay!

  • Mondoweiss is necessary—so Israel can’t silence me and other Palestinian journalists
  • Support Mondoweiss to keep brave journalists reporting news
  • Check out the new Mondoweiss t-shirts
    • Clif, I think you haven't scrolled down into the part of the page that has the images of t-shirts and drop-downs to select size and color. It's below the article, and above the comments. Once you select a color and size, you can click on "Add to Cart" (orange button) and it will take you to a page to pay.

  • Not just financial support but inspiration: your role in advancing Mondoweiss
    • Hurray, eljay! Thanks so much. I love this community.

    • Thank you! Hedy was a wonder and we all miss her. You too are a remarkable person.

    • Thank you so much for this moving message, inbound.

      We absolutely value the members of our community who can't give financially, and we are always looking for ways to involve folks who have time and passion to offer. In the meantime, just the fact that you tell people about Mondoweiss is wonderful.

      Take care of yourself and thanks for all you do.

  • How your contributions power Mondoweiss journalism
    • Thank you, Boomer! We appreciate whatever you can do.

    • Amigo, as of now the official end is the end of July - but we of course accept gifts any time whether a campaign is on or not.

      Would it work for you to sign up for a monthly amount? We will be grateful for whatever you can do, whenever you can do it.

      By the way, I rarely know which of our donors are the regular commenters. If (any of) you want us to know, put it into the "message" field when you give!

      We appreciate you greatly.

    • I saw! Was about to send you a private message thanking you but this allows me to thank you here!

      And....dear readers...I know many of you particularly cherish Annie's contribution to our work. If she can make such a remarkable sacrifice, I hope some of you will try to stretch as well.

      To be honest, all of us on the staff are contributing financially in various ways. Every one of us could earn more doing other work, and a *lot* of hours are being spent on MW that never get reported for payment. That's just how much we all believe in what we're doing. Still, Annie's current action is pretty amazing. Thank you so much.

  • Your support today determines: How much truth?
    • Thank you, ckg!

    • @Sibiriak:

      Retention of the archives is far more important to me than than any strategies to “step up of performance” or move in “exciting new directions”, and the idea that the former could have been sacrificed for the latter, even for the short term, is deeply disheartening.

      I was trying to say, but evidently was not clear, that any new ideas would have to wait if there is not enough funding, because the priority has been and will be on *keeping what is* before adding anything.

      Nothing was sacrificed, even short-term...we are working hard to restore to view everything that you are used to viewing. My point was that because we don't have lots of excess cash lying around, when there is a technological challenge like this we have to put in lots of extra time and effort to resolve it. And precisely as you suggest, we won't be able to increase what we provide for the movement unless we have stability for what is now in place.

      The good news is that so many readers care about the content on the site, and will continue providing feedback on both the news and how we operate. Thank you!

    • Thank you for this wisdom, JWalters--both the Mill quotation and your follow-up.

    • Thanks, eljay!

    • Thanks so much for your support, rico.

    • Yeah, Mooser, one would have hoped so. This is one element in the pending decision about whether to move to a (much more costly) alternative provider.

    • Hi, @peter and @irishmoses.

      I hope by now you've seen Adam's explanation of the situation: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/07/jewish-entitlement-populism/#comment-847608.

      I get why folks have been so upset about this, and was relieved to learn that all the content is still safe - it's just offline for the time being while we figure out how to manage the costs of getting it back to full accessibility for all.

      It is ironic - or totally fitting? - that this discovery of likely major new costs has come just when we launched our fundraising campaign. Believe me, there has been a bunch of nail-biting and hair-pulling-out behind the scenes here, because although we've always been able to make ends meet we don't have a lovely cushion for unexpected financial strains like this one.

      The challenge is not only restoring the comments in the short term, but paying for increased server capacity in the long term. Our current budget is about $400,000/year; we have a goal of increasing to $500,000 next year, but that increase was intended to cover exciting new directions. If we have to spend $15,000 or $20,000 next year just on keeping all our current data properly housed for reader access, we won't be able to step up our performance as much as we have been strategizing to do. But we'll do what we have to; we understand that the discussions on Mondoweiss are part of the movement's history and valuable for a whole raft of reasons.

      I hope this gives you some reassurance. MW editors were, like MW readers, the recipients of the unpleasant surprise without advance warning -- not the perpetrators.

      ETA: Just saw Mooser's comment and he said it more concisely than I did. Please know, all of you, that Phil and Adam and Scott (our publisher) take very seriously the responsibility of providing the public with essential information. That's why they're here--and their dedication and professionalism are what drew the rest of the team (like me, the newbie) to work on this amazing project as well.

  • Bill before Ontario legislature falsely claims ‘primary purpose’ of BDS is to boycott Jewish Canadian businesses
  • Introducing Mondoweiss In Print: 'The World the Settlers Made'
    • Thanks for that information, Eva. We'll look into the glitch from this end. Please let me know if you manage to make the purchase (or if you have any more details on difficulty doing so).

    • Thanks for this suggestion, dfmz. We could potentially make a pdf available. Since the text for the booklet comes from posts on MW, we thought that anyone purchasing would be doing so in order to have high-quality photos and a hard-copy product for showing friends.

      In order to help us figure out whether a pdf edition makes sense, could you tell me what you think a reasonable charge would be? If others want to chime in on whether you'd be interested in purchasing a pdf that would be helpful as well. Thanks, all.

    • Thanks for that info, amigo. We are using the USPS as well, and I believe we're passing on the full cost to us of postage plus a small handling fee to pay the movement activist who is helping us fulfill the orders. But I'll check to make sure we've got the cost right. (Our booklet is only about 1/4 lb I believe, so that might be part of it.)

    • oldgeezer, did you manage to get the cart working by using another browser? I am trying to figure out whether we have a major problem or just a minor glitch. If you want to send me details of the difficulty, you can find my email address on the About page.

    • Thanks for thinking about how best to get the word out, oldgeezer!

      I know that Mondoweiss has used that kind of premium in the past, and we did consider it for this item as well. There are several reasons we didn't want to go that way this time, but we will continue to think about options like this for the future for sure.

  • NY's Public Theater cancels Palestinian production, 'The Siege,' it agreed to stage in May
  • Among the settlers
    • WH, your Google results depend heavily on what Google's algorithms have recorded you searching for in the past. Someone who has never visited Mondoweiss or read anything about this Phil Weiss will not get the same set of results that you got.

      But also, the commonness of the name means that someone wouldn't think of googling him in the first place. Example: I know who Pamela Geller is, but if I meet someone named Pam Geller in the course of everyday life, and she behaves pleasantly and in a civilized manner I'm not going to assume it's *the* Pamela Geller. And I'm on the lookout for this kind of thing; presumably these settlers aren't assuming that anti-Zionists are going to be showing up at their door.

  • Coming Monday on Mondoweiss — Advertisements
  • On #GivingTuesday, meet our new Development Director
    • Based on the responses to your questions, I have the impression that this is part of a long-running discussion and that almost anything I say will be used as ammunition for some argument that I'm not fully informed on.

      I do find the question(s) of racism and white supremacy extremely interesting intellectually as well as immensely important politically and morally. In my grad school days, I did research on the various contexts in which Jews have been labeled by others as white and not white, and have self-identified as either of these categories (and sometimes as both at the same time).

      In my own work and interactions, public and private, I try to live according to the principle that white privilege is a pervasive fact (although whiteness itself is a construct), white supremacy is a dominant ideology, and it's my responsibility to fight against both. There are many contexts in which I personally benefit from either or both, and it's my responsibility to point out those benefits and try to lessen their impact where I can. Where I can't, I must use the benefits (such as greater weight given to my statements, or access to an "elite" educational institution) to strengthen my work against racial injustice.

      There are other contexts in which I either am not considered white or I benefit more from other kinds of privilege. I don't worry constantly about how I personally achieved a particular kind of privilege; I try instead to recognize, call out and fight against institutions that perpetuate and increase injustice of all sorts.

      I'm not sure that you, @a4tech, were referring to me as "pledging allegiance to a state built and sustained from the genocide and oppression of indigenous folks and PoC" but if you were, I guess my response is to say that I don't consider myself to have "pledged allegiance" to any state.

      I agree that the U.S. rests on the genocide and oppression you refer to. Having citizenship of a country built on such atrocities gives me a platform on which to fight their continuing effects, and an obligation to do so. But I don't know that there is any recognized state whose government and related institutions are not built on many injustices. "Pledging allegiance" is not the issue; the issue is what work people do to bring states (those that accord them citizenships, and othersr) to account and fight for human rights and equality.

    • Just to close a few loops:

      1) I gave specific thanks to several of you who welcomed me, but since then I've had the delight of coming back and finding more kind words. Thank you to @can of worms, @Maximus Decimus Meridius, @Sibiriak, @oldgeezer, @Kay24, @eljay and @Mooser. And I *think* @talknic also meant to be friendly, so thank you too!

      2) I agree with Annie, @can of worms, that your statement is a very well-taken corrective to the frequent emphasis we see on Jewish activism. Thank you for the reminder that Palestinians "will be the agents of their own change, we are not passive victims waiting to be rescued by Jewish anti-Zionists or Arabs or Americans or any other outsiders no matter how good and excellent their help....Palestinians, many in the 48 Occupation, are struggling to build a mass movement against all odds. The first and most difficult hurdle to cross is the colonization of the mind, this is where a lot of energy has to be vested, political re-education and the throwing off of the shackles of colonized thought." For the record, I don't believe that my opinions should have any more weight because I'm Jewish--but I can only speak and act from my own history, identity and position.

      3) @hophmi, I get that you don't like the answer I gave to your "simple question," but I will simply note that I did answer it. You claimed that "Jewish culture is repeatedly criticized and sometimes desecrated" on this site, and I responded by both challenging your premise of a single Jewish culture and declaring that in my experience the site demonstrates respect for all humans and every culture that respects human rights. That experience is what gives me the confidence that Mondoweiss "is a place to promote that value."

      Time and priorities won't allow me to answer every time you ask a question or object to views I express here, but since this is my first official statement at MW I wanted to make clear that I did not duck this particular question.

      4) Yup, a streak in my hair was blue in the summer of '14--and may yet be again. I'm a serious person in many ways so I sometimes use fashion to signal that I also have a playful side.

    • Really interesting question, @MHughes976. I think your definition covers a good part of what I have in mind by the term--although I'm not sure how important ancestry is in the general usage; will need to think about that--but what you don't mention is the priority of statehood in the definition of the group's "interests." I think for something to go beyond tribalism (a term which is generally considered derogatory) to nationalism (a term used neutrally and often positively) it has to consider statehood or "self-determination" as the ultimate goal for the group in question.

      P.S. Looks like I figured out how to change my display name--yay for technology!

    • Fascinating comment, Scott. I personally abhor nationalism but I understand that many whom I respect have found ways for it to be meaningful. But yes, even if it has its healthier manifestations, the one that allows for Israel's treatment of Palestinians doesn't fall into that category.

      And yes, I know Ardmore and I played field hockey (quite badly) against Baldwin School many, many years ago. Thanks for the welcome.

    • Thank you, Annie! Delighted to be by your side.

    • Phil, you make me blush. Thanks for welcoming me and letting me grow as part of the team.

    • Tova here.

      I understand, @hophmi, that you believe that what Mondoweiss does is not "good for the Jews," nor for humanity as a whole (although the welfare of other humans matters less in your scale it seems). As I see it, even if I didn't care about the welfare of millions of people just because they're not Jewish, there is enormous--and mounting--evidence that the practices along with the legal basis for the state of Israel have been, are, and will continue to be bad for Jews.

      Dangerous for Jews' physical existence: More Jews have died through violence in defending the mistaken goal of a Jewish state than anywhere else in the world since WWII.

      Dangerous for Jews' moral or spiritual condition: Jewish identity, purpose and ethics have been reduced to support of a crude, simplistic and militaristic nationalism that shuts down questions and suppresses human empathy. There is beauty, humour and wisdom in many Jewish traditions I grew up with, but they are being pushed aside for the narrow value of blind loyalty.

      But even if setting up and maintaining a precarious apartheid state could somehow in the long run benefit Jews rather than purchasing enmity and thus indefinite peril--even if, somehow, safety could be bought at the cost of other human beings' dignity and freedom--that is a cost that is far too high to pay. I don't see any value in maintaining a future for Jews if it means denying the humanity of anyone.

      Specifically, you reacted to my hoping for a regime in which people can "honor one another’s cultures" and you claimed that Mondoweiss criticizes and desecrates "Jewish culture." You may not have noticed that I intentionally did not refer to "Jewish" and "Arab" or "Palestinian" culture. In my experience, people live in a patchwork of partial, constantly renewing and changing cultures, which have local elements as well as components that link people across hundreds or thousands of miles and years.

      I don't believe that there is a single "Jewish culture." In my experience, the writing in Mondoweiss gives room and possibility for a variety of Jewish and other cultures that prioritize human rights and connection. I don't agree with everything published in Mondoweiss, even from the editors or contributing writers let alone all the comments. But I believe that this is a forum where people can learn and I know that the editors are committed to respecting all people.

      I'll close this comment by saying that I find @SteveGrover's criterion for "idiocy" rather curious. It's obvious that pro-Zionist organizations--whether the JNF or other--"will raise in the next 5 minutes an equal amount" to what we can raise for Mondoweiss over a *much* longer period of time (a year, perhaps?). If the best indicator of an ideology's or institution's value is how much money it can raise, clearly the Koch brothers and their think tanks are the wisest parts of American society. But many stories in Jewish history, and in other traditions, consider as heroes people who act according to their principles even against overwhelming odds.

      All the millions raised by self-muzzling Zionist institutions have not made them immune to the power of people asking questions and demanding justice. I would rather be part of a movement that awakens people on a tiny budget than a system that uses a gigantic budget to frighten and limit them.

    • Thanks, amigo.

      I suppose I should see about changing my user name from Generalist to my own name. Will get to that...first, need to push on getting our campaign ready for next week!

  • You won't find a mix like ours anywhere else in the media!
    • Thanks, Mooser! Appreciate your support.

    • Oh, no! I'm the person who suggested using the megaphone metaphor--I work with Mondoweiss to increase the team's engagement with readers and supporters. Gosh, if I'd known about that moment in hasbara, I would have definitely thought differently about this.

      On the other hand, look at it this way: if we were across the street from a large Zionist demonstration, and we were trying to get passersby to notice that we are chanting in opposition, wouldn't we want a megaphone if the group on the other side had one? They've been buying up as many of the megaphones as they can get their hands on...but we don't want them to have all of them! Think how powerful it would be if *we* had 100,000 Mondoweiss Megaphone users. "Do it now. For Palestine."

      In any event, thank you so much for your donation. We are fortunate to have thoughtful, knowledgeable people informing us about the context for our messages, and contributing money to keep our operations going.

Showing comments 47 - 1
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