32:1 Give ear, ye heavens, and I will speak; and let the earth hear the words of my mouth.
In the world of Kabbala it is not strange that inanimate creations like heaven or earth would be called upon to witness or even the walls on one’s house testify about his activities in behavior or misbehavior in his life.
2 My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew; as the small rain upon the tender grass, and as the showers upon the herb.
The Torah provides spiritual sustenance to mankind like rain and dew water plants and one is a physical and the other a spiritual growth.
3 For I will proclaim the name of the LORD; ascribe ye greatness unto our God. 4 The Rock, His work is perfect; for all His ways are justice; a God of faithfulness and without iniquity, just and right is He.
Even though God is strong [like a rock], when He brings retribution upon those who transgress His will, He does not bring it in a flood [of anger], but [rather] with justice because “His deeds are perfect.”
King David wrote in Psalms the ways of the L-RD are straight and bring joy unto the heart. He essentially brings down always Justice with Mercy. Rabbi Yacov London TzZal would always talk about HASHEM’s Justice and Mercy (so much over the course of the years that he older boys used to imitate his manner of speech on this.) We all joked around in our immature ways but we learned this important principle from the Rosh Yeshiva. For G-D’s Justice is not like man’s there is no forgetfulness on the part of the Dayan, no lies from the prosecuting Angel or the Defense and nothing is hidden. But the Din is straight and Just and often melted out with Compassion and Mercy of Our Father Our King. Do unto us charity and mercy and save us! Thus a stupid forgetful transgression of Shabbos is not the same as one who drives to pick up his adulterous companion and go to a trafe restaurant. They will get the above mentioned retribution that Rashi mentions.
5 Is corruption His? No; His children's is the blemish; a generation crooked and perverse. –What a bad translation now look at the Chabad Translation:
Destruction is not His; it is His children's defect you crooked and twisted generation.
6 Do ye thus requite the LORD, O foolish people and unwise? is not He thy father that hath gotten thee? Has HE not made thee, and established thee?
Wake up and recognize who you are and WHOM you are sinning against!
7 Remember the days of old, consider the years of many generations; ask thy father, and he will declare unto thee, your elders, and they will tell thee. 8 When the Most High gave to the nations their inheritance, when He separated the children of men, He set the borders of the peoples according to the number of the children of Israel.
Learn from history aka sin = punishment, observance = reward even if you do it no better than a puppy in training you will be rewarded all the more so if you observe the Mitzvos with zeal and preparation with all your strength whether young or old.
9 For the portion of the LORD is His people, Jacob the lot of His inheritance.
Please show me from this Pasuk where the so-called Palestinian People fit into the inheritance of Yisrael??? I will give you one and only one guess who deserves the land.
10 He found him in a desert land, and in the waste, a howling wilderness; He compassed him about, He cared for him, He kept him as the apple of His eye. 11 As an eagle that stirs up her nest, hovers over her young, spreads abroad her wings, takes them, bears them on her pinions-- 12 The LORD alone did lead him, and there was no strange god with Him. 13 He made him ride on the high places of the earth, and he did eat the fruitage of the field; and He made him to suck honey out of the crag, and oil out of the flinty rock; 14 Curd of cattle, and milk of sheep, with fat of lambs, and rams of the breed of Bashan, and he-goats, with the kidney-fat of wheat; and of the blood of the grape thou drank foaming wine.
By putting all the trust in HASHEM one gets the full benefits but …
15 But Jeshurun waxed fat, and kicked--thou didst wax fat, thou didst grow thick, thou didst become gross--and he forsook God who made him, and contemned the Rock of his salvation. 16 They roused Him to jealousy with strange gods, with abominations did they provoke Him. 17 They sacrificed unto demons, no-gods, gods that they knew not, new gods that came up of late, which your fathers dreaded not.
When one gets wealthy and heavy with too much food, one becomes arrogant and begins to get idle aka idol thoughts in one’s head. One cannot forget the story of the son of a religious billionaire who was killed by an over dose of drugs because of his over indulgence. The same with Christina Onassis with her inheritance so again learn history and follow what HASHEM wants don’t go to the left or the right. We all end up sinning whether minor or major but we must try not to and must do our best to repent. The sin could be bitul Torah on YouTube old music or watching a movie where the modesty becomes questionable etc. We beat our breasts and ask forgiveness with Selichos Prayers. Let us resolve to guard our tongues and behave the way we should. Let us resolve to count our blessings and trust in HASHEM.
… 44 And Moses came and spoke all the words of this song in the ears of the people, he, and Hoshea the son of Nun. 45 And when Moses made an end of speaking all these words to all Israel, 46 he said unto them: 'Set your heart unto all the words wherewith I testify against you this day; that ye may charge your children therewith to observe to do all the words of this law. 47 For it is no vain thing for you; because it is your life, and through this thing ye shall prolong your days upon the land, whither ye go over the Jordan to possess it.'
The Mussar Song continued with the message to the people who sang it over and over again as Moshe conducted them until everybody knew it by heart. At this point Moshe turns over the reins to Yehoshua ben Nun.
48 And the LORD spoke unto Moses that selfsame day, saying: 49 'Get thee up into this mountain of Abarim, unto mount Nebo, which is in the land of Moab, that is over against Jericho; and behold the land of Canaan, which I give unto the children of Israel for a possession; 50 and die in the mount whither thou go up, and be gathered unto thy people; as Aaron thy brother died in mount Hor, and was gathered unto his people. 51Because ye trespassed against Me in the midst of the children of Israel at the waters of Meribath-kadesh, in the wilderness of Zin; because ye sanctified Me not in the midst of the children of Israel. 52 For thou shalt see the land afar off; but thou shalt not go thither into the land which I give the children of Israel.'
Moshe then starts to depart for his final journey up the mountain to view Eretz Yisrael and we have the Torah ending next time with his blessing to the Tribes as he takes his last journey.
Halacha from Danny Schoemann
The blast of the Shofar should remind us to awaken from our spiritual slumber and start taking our Torah study and Mitzvah observance seriously. Hearing the Shofar being blown on Rosh Hashanah is a Torah commandment! This crucial detail should not be forgotten when reflecting on the various symbolic reasons given for Shofar blowing.
One should not talk after hearing the Bracha on the Shofar until after hearing 100 blasts from the Shofar so as not to interrupt between the Bracha and fulfilling the Mitzvah as prescribed by Chazal. This means not talking until after Mussaf. (As a general rule one shouldn't ever talk during prayer services. On Rosh Hashanah there's another reason why not to so.)
At a minimum one should be careful not to talk after the Bracha until hearing the first set of 30 Shofar blasts. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 129:15
One may not prepare from Yom Tov to Shabbat unless one does Eruv Tavshilin before Yom Tov. Since Rosh Hashanah is on Thursday & Friday, every household needs to do Eruv Tavshilin sometime on Wednesday, before candle lighting. One takes bread or Matza and a cooked or baked food that will be eaten on Shabbat and one says the Bracha:
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה' אֱלקֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָּנוּ עַל מִצְוַת עֵרוּב
One continues with the following, which must be said in a language one understands:
בַּהֲדֵין עֵרוּבָא יְהֵא שָׁרֵא לָנָא לַאֲפוּיֵי, וּלְבַשּׁוּלֵי, וּלְאַטְמוּנֵי, וּלְאַדְלוּקֵי שְׁרָגָא, וּלִמֶעְבֵּד כָּל צָרְכָּנָא מִיּוֹמָא טָבָא לְשַׁבְּתָא
"With this Eruv we are permitted to bake, cook, keep things warm and light fire and do all that is needed from Yom Tov to Shabbat". (There is the Nusach that I use which ends in for my household and all Jews in the City and once I forgot when I was a new immigrant and had to depend on the Nusach of Rabbi Drapkin Shlita Rosh Yeshiva Grodno in Ashdod.) The Matza and food should be kept in a safe place; it they are eaten before Shabbat, a Rabbi should be consulted how to proceed. Even those who don't have to cook for Shabbat, still need to do Eruv Tavshilin in order to light Shabbat candles on Friday before sunset (from an existing flame). Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 102
At the Rosh Hashanah evening meal it's customary to eat foods that symbolize a Good New Year. The bread from Motzei is dipped in honey and after eating it the Yehi Ratzon is said praying for a sweet new year.
יְהִי רָצוֹן מִלְפָנֶיךָ שֶתְחַדֵש עָלֵינוּ שָנָה טוֹבָה וּמְתוּקָה
Then one dips an apple in honey, says the Bracha on the apple ("Borei Pri HaEtz") and eats some. One then says the Yehi Ratzon again. There are various other foods that are eaten with their appropriate Yehi Ratzon; one may even add new ones. One tries to have only sweet items on the menu; no food cooked in vinegar, for example. The custom is to not eat nuts. (In Gematria nut, Egoz, is the same as sin, Chet – not the letter.) One should remember to learn some Torah at the Yom Tov meals; some learn a chapter of Mishna-Rosh-Hashanah, which has 4 chapters; one for each meal. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 129:9
Ktiva Vechatima Tova; wishing you a sweet new year - Danny
A main theme of Rosh Hashanah is Hashem's reign over the entire world. This sovereignty is displayed by His ability to judge the world. As a result, from Rosh Hashanah until Yom Kippur is over, we replace "G-D" with "King" in various places in Davening (prayers).
1. The ending of the 3rd Bracha of the Amida changes to HaMelech HaKadosh. If you forget, you have to restart the Amida, unless you caught yourself immediately. Immediately means: you didn't yet have time to say 3 words.) If you're not sure what you said, you also have to restart the Amida.
2. The end of the 11th Bracha in the weekday Amida changes to HaMelech HaMishpat. If you forget or are not sure what you said then you continue. No correction is needed.
3. Friday night during the "Magen Avos" we replace "HakEl HaKodesh" with HaMelech HaKadosh. If you forget, no correction is needed.
From Rosh Hashanah until Yom Kippur is over we add four phrases to the Amida. If you forget after concluding that Bracha, no correction is needed. Until saying "Baruch Ata" you should make amends. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 129:3, 4 5
Ktiva Vechatima Tova; wishing you a sweet and healthy year. - Danny
Wednesday, Erev Rosh Hashana, 29 Elul 5771
Clarification: Eruv Tavshilin can be done on bread or Matza. ==> Do a Mitzva: Call a friend and remind them to do Eruv Tavshilin.<==
Between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur many congregations add after Yishtabach Tehillim 130 1 A Song on the Southern Steps of the Beis HaMikdash. 130:1 Out of the depths have I called YOU, O LORD. 2 Lord, hearken unto my voice; let YOUR ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications. 3 If YOU, LORD, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand? 4 For with YOU there is forgiveness, that YOU may be feared. 5 I wait for the LORD, my soul does wait, and in HIS word do I hope. 6 My soul waits for the Lord, more than watchmen for the morning; yea, more than watchmen for the morning. 7 O Israel, hope in the LORD; for with the LORD there is mercy, and with HIM is plenteous redemption. 8 And HE will redeem Israel from all his iniquities.
Cantor Helfgot on Selichos http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FGbFTJ6fGkU&feature=player_embedded#!
Who will live and who will die at least read this Concentration Camp Blog: http://scheisshausluck.blogspot.com/
How HASHEM liked me but mankind probably misjudged me
The story occurred over 35 years ago. I rode my bike with Yacov Glicksman of blessed memory to the Sea in Ashdod. We were going for a simple swim at the men’s beach and ride home after about an hour. Now the men’s beach was near the Yod-Aleph section of Ashdod. As we packed up to go home, I noticed that due to construction the Eruv was knocked down. Most of Ashdod did not have telephones in those days due to bribes of officials years before by a telephone company instead of ITT which refused to bribe. To get a phone one need protection. There was no way of warning people that the Eruv had fallen. Yacov and I took it upon ourselves to make a make-shift Eruv. We then reported what we did to Rabbi Adler the Chief Rabbi of Ashdod at the time and warned him about the construction and problems with Eruv.
By the time we got back home, it was just around candle lighting. I can’t read minds but I saw the women coming down to wheel their infants in the Eruv to talk. I smiled and said “Shabbat Shalom!” and rushed upstairs to dress for Schul. I can just bet them saying to one another – “What doesn’t Pauli know how important it is to be early for Shabbos?” Had I not fixed the Eruv they would have been carrying the babies and wheeling the strollers in a public domain while the Eruv makes it possible to do this things. Don’t judge others and be ready for the TRUE JUDGE to judge you!
PRAYING FOR FORGIVENESS by Rabbi Simon Jacobson Shlita
In our prayers before and during the High Holiday we repeatedly ask G-d to forgive us in three different ways:
selach lanu mechal lanu kapper lanu
While these Hebrew words are virtually synonymous all meaning "forgive us" they have different implications which shed light on the process of seeking forgiveness from G-d as well as from other human beings.
Selach lanu comes from selichah meaning "pardon." To ask for pardon is to say to the one we have injured: "I am sorry for what I did; I sincerely regret having done it, and I will never do it again." According to Jewish law, the appropriate response to this request is for the one we've injured to believe we are sincere and to respond positively. One who refuses to do this is considered a cruel person.
Mechal lanu comes from mechilah, meaning "wiping away." Here, we are asking the one we've injured to wipe away the transgression as if it never happened, and restore the relationship to the former level of warmth and intimacy. For the one who has been injured a positive response to this is naturally difficult. But it is within each person's G-d-given powers to forgive to this extent. Hence, one must, according to Jewish law.
Kapper lanu comes from kapparah, meaning "atonement" (as in Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement). When we request from the one we've injured to grant us atonement, we are saying, in effect, "My conscience will not let me live with myself, because of what I did to you and to our relationship. Please forgive me and take away the guilt and hurt that I feel." To respond positively to this is beyond human capacity. It is only G-d who can reach inside our hearts and say, "Be consoled."
Ask yourself: How have you responded when someone has come to you asking forgiveness? Have you forgiven others as completely as you want to be forgiven by G-d?
Exercise for the day:
- Make a list of people you have hurt in some way.
- Describe what you must do to ask their forgiveness.
THE THIRTEEN ATTRIBUTES OF COMPASSION
As we petition G-d to forgive us, we repeatedly recite the Thirteen Attributes of Compassion as if to remind G-d that He is merciful and forgiving.
These Thirteen Attributes of Compassion were revealed to Moses when he pleaded for G-d's forgiveness after the sin of the Golden Calf. And they radiate during the month of Elul, when we relive Moses' experience.
Moses was dealing with the aftermath of a very grave thing idolatry, a betrayal of G-d Himself. And this act of idolatry was quite intentional the Israelites knew the consequences. Nevertheless, Moses asked G-d to restore the special relationship between Himself and His treasured people.
To Moses' entreaty, G-d responded with an unprecedented gift. He revealed His Thirteen Attributes of Compassion thirteen secrets of G-d's "personality" that only He could have revealed.
We recite these Thirteen Attributes of Compassion many times during the High Holidays:
"Hashem, Hashem, Almighty, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abundant in kindness and truth, keeper of kindness for thousands of generations, endurer of iniquity and transgression and sin, and cleanser ." (Exodus 34:6-7)
Each one of these words is profoundly mystical and contains enormous Divine energy. The Thirteen Attributes of Compassion are described in the Zohar, the classical work of the Kabbalah, as the "thirteen-pedaled rose" the greatest secret of life, the key how to repair whatever is broken.
According to Talmud (Rosh Hashana 17b), G-d told Moses: "Whenever Israel sins, let them recite this and I will forgive them."
The repetition of G-d's name Hashem, Hashem at the beginning indicates that G-d is telling us, "I am the same G-d before you sin as I am after you sin and repent." This is a solemn assurance that the invocation of the Thirteen Attributes of Compassion will never be without effect.
This assurance means that repentance is always possible and that G-d always awaits our return to Him. The implication is also plain that if we emulate G-d's compassionate ways, He will treat us compassionately in return.
Ask yourself: Do you consciously emulate G-d's compassionate ways? If so, how? If not, why not?
Exercise for the day:
- Do one deed today which expresses compassion, especially to someone who may have wronged you
- Describe how it felt to do it.
THE COUNTDOWN TO ROSH HASHANA
Less than a week remains until Rosh Hashana, which is called "the birthday of the world." In fact, Rosh Hashana is the birthday of the first humans Adam and Eve who came into being on the sixth day of creation. This means that the first day of creation coincides with the 25th of Elul.
Today is the day in the Hebrew calendar which carries with it nothing less than the energy of the creation of existence time, space, matter, darkness, and light. Today we begin preparing the world for its rendezvous with G-d on Rosh Hashana.
If thus far you have not taken full of advantage of the opportunities inherent in Elul to prepare for the High Holidays, the time to start is now. Preparation is essential for success in anything in life be it material or spiritual, be it an audit of your taxes, or an audit of your soul.
Imagine yourself arriving in the reception room of a big corporation.
"Can I help you?" says the receptionist. "Oh, I guess so," you answer yawning and surveying the ceiling. The receptionist looks quizzically at you. "Well... why are you here?"
"I'm not exactly sure." "Are you here to apply for a job, perhaps?" "Yes I think that's it." "Okay, did you bring a resume?" You look at her feeling a little stupid. "No, I didn't bring
anything." "Well, then perhaps you can come back when you've prepared for this."
If you arrived at a big corporation that ill prepared, you'd expect nothing to happen. Similarly, if you arrive at a synagogue on Rosh Hashana without preparation, without knowing what you are there for, or what this is all about, what can you truly expect?
Moses was on the mountain for 80 days. You don't have to physically go to the mountain, but you have to climb. Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur will be only the sum total of what you do today.
Ask yourself: How well prepared are you for the High Holidays?
Exercise for the day:
- Identify the strengths and weaknesses in your preparatory work thus far.
- Recreate day one of creation, and bring a little light into your corner of the world.
This was sent to me by Avraham ben Devorah of my Pray list
I want to tell you a story that happened TODAY, for your Shabbos table. I was supposed to go away to Lakewood for Shabbos, and everything was being taken care of, and I even printed out an itinerary for my Rav and the Schul members of what to do while I am away, and it was close to 15 pages long. I spoke to my host this morning, and he was awaiting my arrival. Then, at 8:00 pm THIS evening, I got a phone call that one of my friend in the shul, and his wife had a NEW BABY BOY. I told the Avi H. that I am going to Lakewood, but the Schul will help out.
Then, my host calls me at 9:00 pm and tells me that he has a Fever and it came out all of a sudden, and since I am a Diabetic, I CAN'T go and I have to stay home to help my friend set up a Shalom Zachor, and this will be his FIRST one!! The Dr. who is treating my host, cannot explain how this cold and fever came from, but that the host on Thursday morning and at lunch time, he was fine with NO fever. My Rav told me that this was a sign from Hashem NOT to leave the Schul and to stay put.
Can you believe this, and my host can't explain what had happened.
So, at the end, I will be eating in Brooklyn, and I will go to the host 1 week AFTER Sukkos. Even my Rav, could not stop me from going to Lakewood, but Hashem in all of His wisdom did THIS!! Even the Reb. was blown away that this can happen, and I can't believe it myself. You cannot make this up!! Can you believe this, and this was FROM MIN HASHOMAYIM!! Something to print or say at the Shabbos table, or even on Rosh Hashanah....
On women learning Torah and improving their lives: http://www.aish.com/sp/lal/A_Second_Look_at_Judaism.html
This is a story that I brought down two years ago and would like to repeat in time for the Chaggim:
That a Cohen May Not Marry a Divorcee by Rabbi Shmuel Holshtein Dedicated to the memory of R' Meir b"r Yechezkel Shraga Brachfeld zt"l
There is a prohibitive commandment that forbids a Cohen from marrying a divorced woman, as it is written, "They shall not take a woman divorced from her husband" (Leviticus 21).
This was not just another one of the typical disputes between the
However, this time there was something different in the air. The argument related to a matter that was especially personal to one of the city’s prominent and wealthy residents, and it was clear that he had no intention of being flexible in this case. His only son had become engaged to a prestigious and well-to-do woman with excellent character traits. The match had not been easy to arrange, and only became possible after much effort.
There was, however, one problem. The bride was a divorcee, and because the groom was a Cohen, Jewish law forbade them from marrying. The rabbi, of course, would by no means permit such a marriage, seeing as it violated Torah law, and all attempts to convince him to conduct the marriage were unsuccessful. After a long argument, the rich man got up, furious, and shouted at the rabbi, "You will see that despite your stubbornness you will have no choice but to conduct my son’s marriage!"
A few days later, a royal emissary of the Empress Maria Teresa appeared at the rabbi’s home. The surprised rabbi realized that the wealthy Jew had broken the convention by which Jews did not involve non-Jews in their inner disputes. He had requested that the empress force the old-fashioned rabbi to marry the couple.
The rabbi was left with no choice, and he told the messenger that he would certainly fulfill the request of the empress. The elation of the enlightened Jews could be heard from afar. Wedding preparations went into high gear. The Maskilim rejoiced at the fact that the rabbi had given in to their demands and their hearts overflowed with a sense of victory. There was not a single person who did not lend a hand in the many preparations.
The rabbi’s many disciples, on the other hand, were furious at the insolence of the wealthy Jew, both at his outright disregard for the Torah’s commandments and at the disrespect he showed the rabbi by forcing him to take part in this disgraceful act. However, the rabbi did not allow them to take any action. To the contrary, his indifference was so great that it appeared as if the matter did not relate to him at all.
A great crowd gathered for the occasion. News of the wedding in which the greatest Torah scholar of the generation would marry a Cohen and a divorcee spread, and many "enlightened" Jews in the area came to see the event with their own eyes. There was complete silence when the rabbi took out the ring and gave it to the groom. As customary, the rabbi led the groom word by word, "Behold, you are betrothed to me with this ring according to the law of…Empress Maria Teresa."
A whisper of shock passed through the crowd, and then the rabbi said, "What is everybody so surprised about? After all, according to the Law of Moses and
This is how we Jews kept our calendar and anybody who says that the Jewish Calendar is off should think again: An advertisement worth reading: http://p5trc.emv2.com/HM?a=ENX7Cqkmnkjp8SA9MKJPjqfnGHxKLJiKAPcStGb5lw8W0bBhOG5mpqVsje_HhdB9ZldW
Some General Information for the New Convert and Baal Teshuva or child about to reach Bar Mitzvah: The Selichos are many forgiveness prayers. The Sephardim have the same prayers all month and people can learn them by heart. The Ashkenazim have a series of prayers. After many years here in Israel, the Hebrew was still too fancy and the prayers too fast for me to enjoy so I read the Hebrew and the Art Scroll translation. Many of our Selichos are alphabetical in nature as is a lot of Psalms of David. Some of the prayers of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are alphabetical such as Kail Orach Dim (G-D the Judge), and some even a double acrostic such as HASHEM Melech, HASHEM Malach, HASHEM Yemloch (the L-RD is king, was king will be king) and the lovely prayer and song "Melech Elyon" aka Heavenly King. On Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur we have special prayer books called Machzorim. There is also a Yom Tov Machzor but most Siddurim have the weekday, Shabbos, Yom Tov prayers. The Yom Tov Machzorim have also the Torah Reading. Unbelievable as it seems every year we go through the 600 page Hebrew Machzor. It is so long because of the Repetition of the Shemona Esrey prayers and the beating of ones chest on Yom Kippur.
Another beautiful thing about Hebrew is the ability to rhyme that does not exist in most languages. Many words can end in Chaf or Chaf Camatz, Vav Tav or Yud Mem for plurals, others in Yod, Hey or Tav Camatz and sometimes with a Chet Patach; and we see that in our Peyutim (religious songs) Selichos and High Holiday Prayers.
Miracle Alert: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4128836,00.html
Our FATHER our KING we have no merits make for us charity and mercy and save us. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wqNJgL3fle0
Debka comes through again with more insights: http://www.debka.com/article/21324/
The Bill Ayers of Europe and famed bomb maker and terrorist is back in town: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/148189
The story I heard was that the transfer was deigned but I guess for re-election purposes it is/was approved: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4126503,00.html
Is Texas the next Sodom? http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/09/22/texas-school-punishes-boy-for-opposing-homosexuality/
Terrorism is back in style: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4127093,00.html
Our Ally Pakistan? http://www.debka.com/article/21338/
It's Time to Tax the Trillionaires by Daniel Greenfield Posted: 20 Sep 2011 09:10 PM PDT
Obama says that it's time to tax the rich. I agree, but while he wants to limit the tax to millionaires and billionaires-- I want to advance it to trillionaires.
Forget Warren Buffett and his secretary and the rest of the small timers; let's look at where the real money is going-- to the trillionaires. Who are the trillionaires? They're the people who spent and spent until we ended up with a 15 trillion dollar deficit. Now it's time to make them pay their fair share.
Politicians, public sector unions, crony capitalists and the rest of the rotten body politic that left us with a debt so big that it can't be repaid without selling an entire state. It's time to make the trillionaires pay.
How do we make them pay? Obama has complained that unless we raise taxes on the rich, there will be no money for Medicare. That's a fair point, so let's tax the trillionaires to recoup the costs. And let's make it a whopping progressive tax too.
home pay from their non-profits and their dues-- we know that like Buffett and half the cabinet, they just won't pay. Let's tax the taxman instead. Since the money that should have kept Social Security solvent was spent by the trillionaires, it should be taken out of their spending. Forget taxing income-- it's time to tax Federal spending.
Got a new bill that calls for spending 10 billion dollars to make pogo sticks in low income neighborhoods more energy efficient or 400 million dollars in foreign aid to terrorists or 1 million to rum factories in the Cayman Islands (because who the hell knows why)? No problem, just get ready to pay your fair share of the bill first toward the national debt and all other obligations.
Since the trillionaires in the government have lots of money-- let's make this an extremely progressive tax. And let's do Sweden one better by making this a 90% tax.
Yes Barry, I know it's hard, but it's only fair-- those who spend more should also have to pay more. It's not class warfare, it's simple math. And the simple math says that the only way to fix budget failures is by taking the money out of the budget. Sure we could hang around waiting for politicians to do the right thing, or we could tax their spending.
It makes no real sense to tax businesses and individuals in a tough economic climate, not when there's less money for everyone-- but in Washington D.C. the spending is still going strong which means they clearly have money to burn. Why burn it on habitats for owls and research projects to study how much television prison inmates can watch without going insane--when we can put it to better use by covering the government's debts.
It's simple math, we have to make those who spend more money pay their fair share. It's up to the trillionaires in Washington D.C. and their allies around the country to start covering some of the losses. And since the definition of tax is fluid in this administration, call it a penalty or a slow repayment plan.
We can only spend so much time moving money around, using fake spending cuts to pay for separate programs, and then making fake cuts to those programs and claiming that spending cuts have been tripled, even as it's the spending that has actually tripled. No more games, just a 90 percent tax on all Federal spending directed at the deficit and obligations on which the government has threatened to default.
No more games, no more dodges, just pay your fair share... back to the people you stole it from.
Of course an extended repayment program will take time and even with a very progressive tax, the debt will still take years to pay off. But that just calls for the trillionaires to find creative solutions to pitch in. What about the Barney Frank Acapella Choir Sings Jingle Cats or Obama's Inspiring Birthday Greetings (Only Slightly Plagiarized From the Works of Maya Angelou.) There are plenty of ideas out there and most of them are bound to at least earn some money. And they'll need to work hard because that tax also applies to the salaries of Federal employees in decision making positions.
There's no question that we can't go on this way, but the hole problem can't be solved by trying to fill it with shovels. Federal spending dug the hole and adding more shovels by raising taxes will just make a bigger hole. The only way we can fill the hole is if we take away the shovels and start putting the dirt back. That means taxing the spenders, not the earners.
The problem isn't that we don't tax the rich enough; it's that we don't tax the super-rich enough. Taxing the millionaires and billionaires will never raise enough money because the deficit isn't caused by low taxes; it's caused by uncontrolled spending. The only tax that will work is a tax on spending.
Now a tax on spending is the only kind of tax in the world that the progressive party is not on board with-- because it's a tax on them, a tax on their capacity to spend, a tax on the source of their power. The Federal budget amounts to a giant pile of money gathered from all over and then handed out to cronies and supporters. It's a spoils system and a spoiled system and the deficit of trillions testifies to that.
The pile of money is our target because it feeds directly into the deficit, it's why seniors are worried and have good reason to be. What was once set up as a safety net has become a big heaping platter of pork served up to everyone with access to a congressman, a protest sign or a checkbook. The only way out of this mess is by getting hold of that pile of money and taking it out of the hands of the people spending it, and what better way to do that then by using the mechanism that allowed them to create that pile of money in the first place.
Taxing the taxmen has a certain quality of poetic justice to it, but also pragmatism. It cuts up the credit cards of the D.C. establishment, puts them on a budget and them lets them have fun passing all sorts of ridiculous spending bills-- which no matter what is in the bill will go not to the endangered macaws of Alaska, the teachers' unions of Minnesota or forty agencies with their own SWAT teams, but toward repaying the debts they all accrued.
Of course there will be angry protests and lobbyists, but unfortunately the tax on angry protests by people who are paid with tax money during their work hours and the tax on lobbying to spend tax money should let even them do their part to pay down the debt. It's only fair.
The newspapers will editorialize and they are free to do that, so long as they are willing to pay the tax on anyone calling for deficit spending. It's only fair that those who promote spending money should pay their share of the costs of their policies.
Eliminating loopholes like these will help pay down our debts and protect our seniors even quicker, that is why I urge Congress to pass this bill. Pass this bill, I say. Our children need it. Our grand-children need it, and our politicians will be locked up in fancy rooms with all the coffee they can drink and free blackberries which will be hooked up to treadmills and the energy of their motion will be used to provide sustainable environmentally friendly power.
Delaying much longer is not an option. Every day that goes by another politician gives a speech and proposes more spending that further inflates the deficit. If we keep this up, no amount of Nancy Pelosi workout tapes and Harry Reid Halloween masks will cover the cost of the money they're spending.
Sure we can take more from the small timers like Bill Gates and Warren Buffett who are eager to pay their share, so long as their share ends up coming out of the Federal budget, as it did with the Oracle of Crony Capitalism's latest fantabulous investment. But why waste our time with mere billionaires, when the trillionaires are waiting?
The Beinish-Netanyahu Crisis Forwarded with commentary by Gail Winston, Mid East Analyst & Commentator
Any threat to the settlers is a direct threat to all Israelis in Israel and to all Jews everywhere in the world.
COMMENTARY BY GAIL WINSTON