Beyond the Cusp

January 18, 2017

Paris Balak Obama Balaam Kerry and History Repeated

 

In Torah at Numbers Verse 22 we are told about how Balak, son of Zippor, King of Moab, sent messengers to summon Balaam, son of Beor, who told him the message from their King which was, “A nation has just come here from Egypt. They’ve spread out all over the countryside and are setting up their camp here in front of me. 6 Please come and curse these people for me, because they are too strong for me. Maybe then I’ll be able to defeat them and force them out of the country. I know that whomever you bless is blessed and whomever you curse is cursed.”

 

Balaam replied asking that the messengers of his King, “Spend the night here and I’ll report to you what the Lord tells me.” Hashem said to Balaam, “Don’t go with them! Don’t curse these people, because they are blessed.” Balak commanded the princes, “Go back to your own country, because the Lord has refused to let me go with you.” The messengers returned and King Balak sent them to return to entreat Balaam once again and during that night Hashem came to Balaam and said, “If these men have come to summon you, go with them, but do only what I tell you.” So Balaam went to journey to do as the King demanded but an Angel blocked the way so Balaam’s mule refused to continue down the blocked passage. Balaam cursed the beast and the beast explained why it refused to continue and they argued; perhaps this is where the phrase ‘smart ass’ originated. Again, after a brief discussion the Angel bid Balaam continue. Balaam had King Balak prepare sacrifices in the manner as commanded by Hashem and then make his prophesies, the presumed curses the King of Moab had commissioned Balaam to pronounce over the Israelites. There were four prophesies which all were blessings, not curses, for Balaam was only able to speak the words that Hashem had given to him. My reason for the detail is that like many other Jews, I say the third of the four ‘curses’ as it blesses the house of Jacob and is known as Ma Tovu. The English Translation can be found at the end of this article.

 

The conference which just ended in Paris was the great idea of United States ‘Lame Duck’ President Obama and likely to be replaced in the next election French President Hollande in a joint effort to summon seventy nations, including their own, to condemn Israel and form the basis for further documents and edicts, particularly another United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolution augmenting the recent UNSC Resolution 2334 which was an advisory resolution unenforceable by any means claiming that Israel has no claims beyond the Green Line unless the Arab known as Palestinians willingly allow such presence. This inverted all former resolutions which left borders up to the involved parties and made no claim as to which party owned which lands with the original resolutions placing the land as belonging to Israel but urging an Arab state be carved from the lands with Israeli permission otherwise the land belonged to Israel. The Oslo Accords altered this granting the lands denoted as Area A as belonging to the Arabs to practice semiautonomous rule. Presidents Obama and Hollande had believed the gathering would be anxious to agree to a resolution demanding Israel withdraw from all of Judea, Samaria and East Jerusalem allowing for an Arab nation of Palestine to be formed and this conference would also recommend that the UNSC also pass a resolution granting the Arab State of Palestine recognition and membership in the United Nations making the demand enforceable by all means necessary under Chapter Seven. This not only did not come to pass, but the conference almost immediately repudiated any thoughts of condemning Israel in such manner and within forty-eight hours the conference disbanded. Once again Hashem intervened and prevented those gathered to curse Israel before the world and withheld their tongues and forbid their cursing of the nation of Israel. The parallel had everything except any reports of angels blocking their paths and their donkey refusing to continue the journey when seeing the heavenly entity (feel free to insert your own ‘smart ass’ joke here).

 

The further good news is without any proclamation from Paris showing any consensus of the seventy gathered nations to present at the United Nations Security Council over the remaining few days before the inauguration brings a close to the Presidency of Barack Obama, it is quite possible that his crusade to attempt to nail Israel to within indefensible borders which she held pre-1967 Six Day War may very well be coming to an end. The problem is that a former President Obama very well will continue his quest using his former title and the aid of collaborative NGO’s is a definite probability. If he intends such actions, time will not be on his side as former President Carter can attest. Granted, Jimmy Carter can get an audience made up of reporters, even if nobody else, willing to echo and amplify his words hoping to reach any potential confederates. Like Jimmy Carter, Barack Obama could write books with fabricated and slanted reviews of events and even nonevents and title the books in similar manner as Jimmy Carters’ book “Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid” which reveals his bias using Palestine in the title and not Israel. The one thing is his book may have been an appropriate title even if the contents were tainted with pure hatred against Israel and the Jewish People. If one is truly interested as to where the true apartheid is in the Israel-Arab conflict, all one need do is read the demands made by Mahmoud Abbas, other Palestinian leaders, Arab leaders across the Arab world about how any Arab nation carved out of Israel must be free of all Jews. One need look no further than the presenting all of Gaza to the Palestinian Authority where every Jew had to be removed and even those buried within Gaza needed to be reinterred within Israel. Where is the real apartheid when even the dead must be removed because even the corpses of a Jew are considered a contaminant by the leaders of the Palestinian Authority? Not a very difficult to figure this one out unless one has bought into the Arab initiated propaganda machine and their media acolytes amplifying their hatred disguised as news and their alternate revisionist history as fact. Let’s look into the little history story they have concocted and measure it against some well-known history by anybody who has studied ancient history or religious histories.

 

The claims that the Arabs resided in the lands which were presumably reserved for the Jewish State was a claim the British found convenient as they exercised efforts to assure that the numbers of Arabs in the British Mandate west of the Jordan River always exceeded the number of Jews. The British imported Arabs while restricting the number of Jews allowed to enter in order to prevent the establishment of a Jewish state. This cost millions of Jews their lives when during the lead up to World War II the Jews of Europe were blocked by the British to a mere seventy-five-thousand a year immigrating and the British managed to not even meet that meager number almost every year. This resulted in Israel being founded with near the same numbers of Jews and Arabs within her borders. This resulted in many Arab villages deciding to fight as allies to the Islamic Arab forces from half a dozen Arab nations attacking Israel at her birth resulting in many of these villages being vacated and sent beyond the front lines as the vulnerability of the Jews to these attacks left them without a better option. The claims that the Arabs resided in these lands for many thousands of years, some have claimed five while others as many as nine, is completely unsubstantiated by the historic records. On the other side, Jews residing in the lands and in Jerusalem, including the Jewish section of the Old City, Hebron and virtually every major city was recorded in every census taken by the British and the Ottomans before them. The Arabs, on the other hand, did not leave the Arabian Peninsula in any numbers until after the year 600 after which they made quick conquest of the entirety of the Middle East followed by Northern Africa and into Spain (Andalusia). This conquest was one of the greatest colonizational conquests in history only rivaled later by Spain and Britain. (For a record of the separate conquests starting with the lands taken by Mohammad and after his passing the following Muslim leaders see map below) Muhammad conquered most of the Arabian Peninsula; at least its main population centers of Mecca and Medina and never saw Jerusalem in his entire life. It was not until at least a quarter of a century before the Islamic forces claimed Jerusalem and proceeded to take the rest of the former Jewish lands. The Crusades were the Christian response to being pushed from Jerusalem and the Holy Lands and continued for quite some time with Jerusalem and other major cities such as Nazareth, Akko and Bethlehem changed hands between the Muslims and Christians numerous times. This did not go well for the Muslims or Christians as these conquests alternated. The one consistency was that the Jews suffered with every change of conquest as they were always regarded as having aided the other side and thus as untrustworthy. Jewish writings from these times, the few which survived, reported mostly that the Jews did all in their power to melt into the scenery and be as unobtrusive as humanly possible. Their survival depended on their giving an image as being as weak and unassuming as possible completely unable of posing a threat to anybody. The Islamic history does not record many defeats as Islam is predicated on the supremacy of Allah and as such also his warriors. Their rapid conquest of large areas fed this supposition as they had no real idea that the Roman Empires collapse and the weakness of the Byzantine Empire and lack of any united force beyond the Nile River was instead interpreted as the supremacy of Islam.

 

Expansion of Islam Across MENA and threaten Europe before Ottoman Rule

Expansion of Islam Across MENA and threaten Europe before Ottoman Rule

 

The most interesting concept from these conquests was the idea of what was the third holiest city in all Islam. As they surged from the Arabian Peninsula the initial third most important city became Damascus and Bagdad then Toledo and Barcelona and eventually Constantinople which when they finally breached its walls and took the city they renamed Istanbul. What is interesting is that Jerusalem was such a minor city that it paled in importance initially to Damascus except for the fact that it was of such importance to the Jews and Christians which made it worthy of great efforts to take and keep. Holding Jerusalem was important only in that it denied the Jews and Christians of their holy city. When Islam went through a period where the Muslim rulers in Arabia were at odds with the northern Islamic holdings and denied them permission to enter the Arabian Peninsula the Muslims decided that the Haj could be satisfied by going to Damascus, not Jerusalem. One northern Calif did attempt to use Jerusalem, but he quickly realized the fact that Jerusalem was an uncomfortable city with an awful climate and part way through the summer he moved everybody back to Damascus and wrote off any ideas of using Jerusalem as a holy place in Islam. The mosques built on the Temple Mount were placed there in order to overshadow the Christian churches and make the rebuilding of the Jewish Temple presumably impossible. Other than denying Jerusalem to the Jews and Christians, Jerusalem served no other importance in Islam. When Muslims in much of Israel and Jordan pray five times each day they turn themselves toward Mecca placing their derrieres toward Jerusalem, more a sign of disrespect than honor.

 

The reality of President Obama and his campaign to injure Israel appears to be far more than a simple dispute between him and Prime Minister Netanyahu. If that is the entire root of his apparent desire to injure Israel at every turn, then he is a more petty and disrespectful person than I would like to believe. Odd as it may seem, I would rather President Obama to desire to make a gift of all Israel to Islam as he believes Israel, wrongfully, to be a European colony. This proves he has never spent any time within Israel and watching the people, the Jews. The Synagogue I attend is a mixture of Jews from all over the areas with over half coming originally from areas under Islamic control while others are from Eastern Europe and some from Western Europe and a few from the United States and a couple from Africa, possibly Ethiopia. We are a mixed group and yet are more about our common Judaism and our shared faith and love for Hashem, but President Obama believes we are all European conquerors because of the dreams he uses as his inspiration in life, the dreams from his father, just like his book title he presumably wrote. It really is a shame that President Obama had this misconception about Israel as we have pointed out before, many of the nations, the numerous Arab and even European nations, really would rather not take any Jews; even any that may have had ancestors residing in those nations. Further, many younger Israelis have parents who are from opposite ends of the world. My parents are a perfect example, as my father was from London and ancestors traced to Russia while my mother was raised in Mumbai and trace her family to Iraq. Which nation would I be forced to return to or would I have to return to the United States? Yes, it gets confusing once one actually attempts to figure out what to do with the Jews in Israel. How about what they decided in Paris, allow the Jews to take care of themselves and do so in all of the lands guaranteed them by Article 80 of the United Nations Charter and all that includes the lands west of the Jordan River. Just what the world agreed upon originally including King Feisal representing the Arab League. For the mean time, at least Paris has passed and Israel spared by Hashem and the guiding hand which this time was used gently. It would be nice to keep it that way.

 

Beyond the Cusp 

 

 

How great are your tents, O Jacob,
Your dwelling places, O Israel!

As for me, through Your abundant grace,
I enter your house to worship with awe in Your sacred place.

O Lord, I love the House where you dwell,
And the place where your glory tabernacles.

I shall prostrate myself and bow;
I shall kneel before the Lord my Maker.

To You, Eternal One, goes my prayer:
May this be a time of your favor.

In Your abundant love, O God,
Answer me with the Truth of Your salvation.

December 18, 2016

Imagine the Return to a Revolutionary Ideal

 

Once upon a time there was the Black Robe Regiment which was the name given by the British to the Colonial Preachers who supported American independence. Not only did they preach independence, they very often were officers in the militias against the Red Coats. The British did all they could to murder these preachers and many gave their lives for the Revolution but the danger did not curtail the Black Robe Regiment preachers who refused to be cowed and were one of the main inspirations of the American revolution. Their sermons inspired and often their brash and brave actions kept the Revolution alive and brought a number of victories against the odds with their bravery and words motivating their fellow congregants often at the most crucial of moments. The United States owes much of the founding in the fighting and the religious basis of the Founding Fathers and the state legislators whose input and approvals were required in the formation of both the federation of America and then the Constitution which was the foundation for the United States of America. There is a possibility that the Revolution could have failed without the local inspiration and organization which was often centered around the churches and their Black Robe Regiment preachers.

 

Black Robe Regiment

Black Robe Regiment

 

All that changed in 1954 at the behest of Texas Senator Lyndon Baines Johnson’s proposed legislation to amend the tax codes affecting houses of worship such as churches, synagogues, mosques, or temples and other nonprofit organizations with 501(c)(3) tax exemptions. The amended tax code limited the freedom of speech by members of organizations and entities who had tax exempt status under 501(c)(3) regulations making any political speech such as supporting a candidate, party or other specified political speech. The amendment to the tax codes was named for its presenter and is called the Johnson Amendment. Particularly prohibited was conducting political campaign activities to intervene in elections to public office or other sermonizing which may be perceived as backing a candidate or party. The language was vague and unspecific enough that many clergy were silenced from mentioning even certain Bible passages near election times as they might be construed as taking sides on a campaign issue and by doing so backing a particular candidate or party. Such brought to an end political preaching from the pulpit, at least in theory as some such still exists but as long as the parishioners are singing the same tune, nobody complains and such activity continues. This was specifically used to target and silence clergy from endorsing candidates. Over time this embargo on political speech became partisan in nature in too many locations as a ban against conservative politicking while backing leftist causes or progressive Democrat candidates. Still, care was taken to never mention any names and instead to often mimic campaign slogans working them into sermons or choosing verses carefully for recitation which would appear to back one candidate’s positions or damn the opposing candidate. Still, clergy still need be far more reserved and careful and a far cry from the history of clergy, especially when one remembers the Black Robe Regiment.

 

Texas Senator Lyndon Baines Johnson

Texas Senator Lyndon Baines Johnson

 

Should Donald Trump as president keep his word and successfully repeal the Johnson Amendment thus freeing certain tax exempt institutions and their personnel from conducting any political activities, especially campaigning or endorsing candidates, imagine the consequences. We would witness the liberation of the clergy and the resultant rebirth potentially of a new Black Robe regiment preaching and supporting political positions more aligned with their religious beliefs. There need be no great fears from secularists as they won’t be in houses of worship forced to hear any sermonizing, especially political sermonizing. Rescinding this regulation, expunging it from the tax code, would be a strike for freedom of speech. Placing a political muzzle on the clergy and threatening their tax exempt status was a bad idea from the start, one might even say criminal. But then Lyndon Baines Johnson was not exactly known for tact or freedom of expression for anybody disagreeing with his views. He was better known for strong-arming political rivals by any and all means at his disposal. This was most evident during his time as President which also served to allow his passing every piece of legislation which became the backbone of his “Great Society” and a remaking of the social safety net and the start of an increased welfare system. Some have blamed this for many societal problems being faced by American society currently. Just maybe a little moralizing before Election Day voting would serve as a positive influence. Just Maybe.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

December 4, 2016

It’s In, Trump’s Failed Presidency

 

The headlines almost uniformly report the Trump Presidency was a failure. Trump was a complete and total disaster and everything he touched turned to liberal progressive pain and disgust. The media all over has it figured and the problem is that Trump cannot do anything right. Or maybe it is he does everything right when to succeed everybody knows you have to be on the left, not just right. You see left is good, left is correct and right is just plain wrong. And whatever you do, do not come forward and say that Trump has not even been sworn in yet because that doesn’t matter, he’s a failure and nothing you or he can do will change that.

 

What if the economy takes off and both the markets, numbers of people employed and all other indicators fly high after he takes office? Well, obviously you must have missed the eight years of dedications and making the hard choices by President Obama which are finally paying off. Trump is simply reaping the rewards of all of President Obama’s brilliant handling of the economy. Had President Obama been permitted a third term or Hillary Clinton been elected, then they would have gained and gleaned all the glory but instead it is falling undeservedly on Donald Trump. No, there is little hope that the average American will understand these things as they are just so complex. This is how it always happens that a Democrat’s hard work is then claimed by their Republican successor when the difficult work was done before the Republican came into office. Reagan gained acclaim for all the work done by Jimmy Carter. It was President Carter’s examples of selflessness and showing that even a Capitalist can have a heart which wore down the USSR and not that military wastefulness of Reagan who claimed to have spent the Soviets into ruin. Have you ever heard anything so preposterous? They were brought low by love and caring of President Carter and not the brashness and impolite efforts of that brutish Reagan and everybody who knows anything knows that. Reagan also took credit for the economy made possible by President Carter’s fiscal policies. Like President Obama, President Carter inherited an economy teetering on the edge of oblivion and saved the United States from guaranteed ruination but does he ever get the credit for that miracle, no. Instead the historians have been pulled in by Reagan’s allure and simple charm. Simple charm, it was more like simpleton charlatan than simple charm. What they will not claim despite all the honest evidence.

 

Everybody who understands reality knows the truth and knows that the truth is often sacrificed because it is simpler to cheer and root for the new kid than recognize the dedication and hard work done by the predecessor who actually set the stage for the triumphant simpleton who lucked into the glories made possible by leftist policies carried out by the hard work of the previous administration. One great example has been Carrier deciding to keep a fair number of jobs and production in the United States rather than move it to Mexico. We understand that you heard it was because of efforts by Trump and Pence which arranged for these jobs to be kept in the United States rather than transferred to Mexico. Well, they have tried to steal the glory but remember who is in the White House and finally should be receiving the credits he is due. President Obama saved those jobs with his well-crafted policies designed to retain jobs in the United States finally paying dividends, but as is the Republican way, they stole the glory and thunder of a Democrat administration’s accomplishments. Their blatant disregard for facts is just appalling.

 

What will they claim next, that they are able to rebuild the military? The sole reason they are able to rebuild anything concerning the military has been due to the marshalling of efforts and the cutting of numerous wasteful military projects in favor of a more integrated military with a shared ability with their European counterparts. The Obama Administration had streamlined the military and its prolific spending and made it into a lean, green fighting machine and now Trump thinks he can simple ride in on his white steed and claim all the glory. Well, not if the media has anything to say about this glory hound who is never there for the hard work but first in line when taking credit is due. It has already been made clear that Donald Trump has no shame and will bathe himself in the glories only made possible by the hard and dedicated work of his predecessor who will receive no credit for his efforts. Donald Trump, just like Ronald Reagan, will be front and center to claim the great leaps and gains of the American economy which is simply responding to the inevitable wondrous gains in leaps and bounds due to what President Obama managed to accomplish despite a do nothing Congress and all the chips down against his success. While nothing could prevent the great recovery put in place by the policies of President Obama, heaven knows that Trump tried to ruin everything with his fiscal policies. It was simply more in place thanks to President Obama and his dedication setting the stage for a recovery which unfortunately for President Obama will come too little too late. Still, the historians will likely get everything sorted out and President Obama will rise meteorically and rival any President before and likely after him in what he accomplished.

 

Donald Trump

 

How else can the media report the greatness and the legacy which rightfully belongs to President Obama but will be stolen by his Republican successor. It is such an old trend where President Eisenhower inherited the result of Franklin Delano Roosevelt and continued by Harry Truman. We saw it with Ronald Reagan, a man who knew how to milk a scene from his days in Hollywood. Now we sit prepared to hear how Donald Trump will be appointing a man responsible for this betrayal as the bird awaits orders for the glamour shots to be taken. It was made all the more obvious as the President Elect stole the wonder which rightfully belonged to the team of the Obama Presidency. Be prepared for stories such as these as Trump’s policy reversals and smart management start to take hold. The one thing the media will have gotten correct is that President Obama may never get the credit he deserves for rescuing America from ruin.

 

The preceding was an exercise in sarcasm though this may be exactly what we are bound to hear for the next decade and possibly longer. We on the conservative end of the political spectrum can expect to read article after article in the likes of the New York Times just like what is written above except they will be serious as a heart attack. Their famous Pulitzer Prize winning writers will return and do their best to eviscerate Trump, his Cabinet choices and anything they have a hand in creating. Finally, the newsprint accusations will flirt with the truth just enough to make their condemnations sound credible. What Americans can do is ignore the media and take their news from their own lives and those of their friends, neighbors and yes, even liberals. Just nod knowingly as they explain how everything Trump accomplishes was actually due to President Obama who did all the heavy lifting. We know that there will be need for people capable of herculean abilities if the United States is to be rescued and placed back on the rails. All the way along the Progressives will be digging up the tracks and dynamiting the bridges in attempts to force Trump failures but even after such subterfuge The Donald will prevail. What will happen is that as long as Trump is in office, and presumably Pence after Trump leaves office, there will be sniping and biting at the ankles in attempts to destabilize the economy as well as governance in order to blame Trump. The secret to preventing such is to elect like-minded people to serve with the next Congress making Trump’s task that much easier. But do know the mainstream media will stop at nothing to undercut your efforts and those of Donald Trump. Do not fret as The Donald is a big boy and has taken down his share of bullies and these paper tigers of the media have absolutely no clue what is coming their way. Pop some popcorn and sit back after January 20, 2017 and prepare for the greatest show on Earth, and should we send the right thinking candidates to Congress for the next six years, three elections, then it just may be possible to wrest the United States from the death-grip of the looney left and put America on the tracks of being great again.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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