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Everything posted by TobiasFunke

  1. One more on Trump's anti-Semitism. Not because it's particularly revealing or says something that hasn't already been said in this thread ... but because it gets right to the point and because it's from David Roth, the best writer in America on the subject of Donald Trump by a country mile:
  2. Here's yet another good articulation of why this is so problematic, from Marisa Kabas. A sampling: At this point this only people who refuse to recognize the anti-Semitism in Trump's recent comments is the Republican Jewish Coalition, which I mention only because their twitter banner hilariously looks like this due to the fact that there's only two Jewish Republicans in Congress (there are eight Jewish Senators, plus Bernie, and 25 Jewish House reps).
  3. This would have been a reasonable interpretation yesterday. But as I pointed out there's been plenty said or written about it already, and he hasn't apologized or clarified despite calls to do so from nearly every Jewish political organization in America. In fact he doubled down. So at this point it's a conscious choice. And whether he's making that conscious choice out of genuine hatred of Jews (which I agree probably isn't the case) or simply because it's not in his personality to apologize or back down is pretty much irrelevant. When you're a public figure, your character is rightly judged by your public words and actions, not what you really feel deep down inside. For all I know Karl Rove actually loves the gays in his heart; but that wouldn't magically make his strategy of exploiting passionate opposition to gay marriage in the runup to the 2004 election any less homophobic, hateful and grotesque.
  4. Or. @timschochet you could just look at it in its simplest terms: Trump declared that approximately 80% of American Jews are either stupid or disloyal to Israel. Imagine if in 2004, GWB had trumpeted his work addressing the AIDS crisis in Africa and declared that any black people who didn't vote for him as a result were either really stupid or disloyal to their African homeland. Would that have been racist?
  5. I can't say it any clearer than the articles do. All I can do is point out that you are in disagreement with virtually every Jewish organization worth a damn in America, from the American Jewish Committee to ADL to J Street to Bend the Arc and all points in between. Here's the Times of Israel and the Jerusalem Post summarizing the near-universal outrage from the Jewish community. And if you don't think badmouthing American Jews as stupid or disloyal is a dog whistle to white supremacists and other fringe extremist groups (some of whom, as I'm sure you know, favor a strong Jewish state as part of a doomsday theory about a mass migration of Jews to Israel, conversion and eventually the Second Coming), I likewise can't help you. It may or may not have been an intentional dog whistle, but when you're the President of the United States that hardly even matters. Next time one of those nutjobs mows down a synagogue it won't really matter if the president inspired them intentionally or recklessly.
  6. For those who are curious about just why Trump's "disloyal" comments are anti-Semitic and abhorrent, lemme see if I can help: The most basic fact that he is publicly insulting millions of Americans he is supposed to be leading- something Hillary Clinton ("deplorables") and Barack Obama ("clinging to guns and religion") got into huge trouble for when they did it privately, when they were not the President of the United States. If either of those things upset you, this is obviously substantially worse. For further detail about why it's specifically anti-Semitic in addition to just being generally obnoxious, there are no shortage of articles out there explaining it. Here's Dalia Lithwick, Jennifer Rubin and Zack Beauchamp, all of whom are Jewish. But I thought these tweets put it pretty well if for some reason you don't have 5 minutes to read an article. In response to a tortured defense of the comments from a Trump spokesperson, Luppen writes: It's a complicated issue but if you want to boil it down to it's essence, there it is.
  7. The problem isn't saying that Jews who vote for Democrats (ie most American Jews) are disloyal to Israel. That's obviously stupid, but it's not offensive. The offensive part is suggesting that American Jews owe some sort of loyalty to Israel as opposed to prioritizing their own country in the first place. It's a universally recognized anti-Semitic trope. And the fact that someone like Dennis Prager embraces it (as does Ben Shapiro, FWIW) ... does not make the point you think it makes. We can continue this chat somewhere else, if you want to continue it at all.
  8. I'm not suggesting you pretend it doesn't exist. I'm suggesting you stop wasting your time thinking you can reduce that number or that they'll somehow offer you a logical explanation for their support after four years of asking for one. Their man just openly and publicly called you either disloyal or stupid. What common ground do you possibly imagine you're going to find with someone who thinks that is OK?
  9. Benjy Sarlin @BenjySarlin Anyway, nothing unsettling for Jews about being told the second coming is here and they’re stubbornly refusing and persecuting him.
  10. Well it would have to be a movement of Republicans, not just one guy. But yeah, I could see some sort of shift. Of course at the moment we have to ask ourselves if someone who "truly respected the rights of minorities and who obviously and genuinely appreciated multiculturalism, and who drew the brightest line in separation of church and state" could succeed as a Republican in the first place. Hopefully some day, but certainly not today. Indeed. Look at this place- it would have sucked if they'd murdered me before I got a chance to check it out.
  11. I guess those friendly Egyptians who gave me a ride from the Israeli border through the Sinai Peninsula with a stop for an elaborate feast along the way were just setting me up for some elaborate death trap. Lucky for me the hash they shared with me clouded their brains enough to foil their plans!
  12. I hadn't, but your question made me curious so I googled it. Found a lot of stuff about American Jewish attitudes towards Israel and American politics generally (no surprises), but at first glance nothing specifically about Netanyahu. This is not at all scientific and just one guy's opinion, but I suspect the recent rhetoric including today's Trump tweet about "disloyal" Jews will backfire on Trump and his party. That sort of talk is not only obviously condescending, but also stereotypes Jews as being preoccupied with Israel at the expense of other priorities. ETA: and right on cue, a conservative conflates Jews and Israelis seemingly without even realizing he's doing it.
  13. it's obviously a complicated question, but I'd point to three things, probably in this order: 1. The current generation of Jewish Americans were raised in the shadow of the Holocaust, and the "never again" message was drilled into our heads over and over. As a result we are extremely sympathetic to the concerns of other oppressed minorities even as we get distance from our own oppression. 2. For most of our lives the GOP (not all of them, but certainly many of them) has sought to encroach on the bright line separation between Church and state. This is obviously going to drive away Jews. People like Ted Cruz give lip service to "Judeo-Christian" ethics, but it's fairly transparent. 3. Jews disproportinately belong to other demographics that lean left/vote Dem: urban or close-in suburban, Northeastern, college-educated, etc. This is the "correlation but not causation" aspect of the phenomenon. I'm sure there's lots of other factors at work but those are the three that jump out to me. As for Trump, Jews voted along with our standard voting patterns in 2016, and then went big for the Dems at the mid-term (79%) despite the fact that they disproportionately are benefitting from his economic policies. I don't know how much of that was a rejection of Trumpism and how much was just correlation because the blue wave happened largely in the suburbs where Jews happen to reside, but I suspect it will happen again in 2020 and the Dem nominee will get somewhere around 75% of the Jewish vote after Hilary got 71%. I doubt the Netanyahu romance will move things very much- Jews generally are pro-Israel but resent being sterotyped as inextricably tied to the state, as Trump often does.
  14. This is obviously horrifically stupid and anti-Semitic in its own right, but IMO it also illustrates a larger problem in the conservative movement. Conservatives spend slmost 100% of the time they spend engaged with minority groups in the US telling them what they should think and do, and 0% of that time listening. They tell African-Americans that they should vote Republican because the Dems have failed them, but don't bother to ask African-Americans why they don't vote Republican and refuse to listen to what they have to say (see eg. the conservative reaction to the outstanding 1619 Project). They tell the Hispanic community that they share their Catholic values on social issues, but ignore them when they point out that the party is using them as a scapegoat to inflame resentful white voters and validating anti-Hispanic bigots like Sheriff Arpaio. They tell Jews that they should embrace Republicans because they support Israel and that their economic policies are good for the disproportionately well-off American Jewish community, but don't bother to ask American Jews why they still vote 3 to 1 for Democrats despite this apparent common ground. This shows up in miniature in this thread. I would hazard a guess that I am the only person who has posted in this thread who is Jewish and has visited Israel multiple times, visited the West Bank, and spoken at length with Arab residents of the state. I thought this experience would be of interest in this thread. But multiple conservative posters dismissed my anger at conservatives who use anti-Semitism as a shield for their attacks on Tlaib and Omar, and my opinions on the Jewish state, as run of the mill bleeding heart liberalism or partisanship. This is why every historically oppressed minority group in America, including groups that conservatives haven't even quarreled with during the Trump era like Asian-Americans, are fleeing the party. And it won't stop until they learn to stop talking down and learn to listen.
  15. The offer was sincere. If any conservatives are befuddled by American Jews' continued support for Dems in the age of the Trump-Netanyahu love affair, Tlaib and Omar (a surreal 79% voted Dem in 2018 midterms and I expect them to come in around 75% for the Dem nominee in 2020), I'm happy to offer my perspective. If not, that's fine too.
  16. I didn't accuse you personally. And I offered extensive facts and examples to back up those accusations, as I always do. And not one fact or example has been refuted. I apologize for bringing the perspective of an American Jew who has visited Israel three times and has extensive firsthand knowledge of the oppression experienced by Arabs living in the West Bank and elsewhere in Israel to this conversation about anti-Semitism and the Israel/Palestine question. I'll step aside so you can continue your conversation. If you, @rockaction or any other conservatives/Republicans want to discuss this further after >70% of American Jews once again vote Democrat in 2020, let me know and I'll be happy to re-engage!
  17. Also, check out this sampling of articles on the Vaulter screen during one of the scenes: – Meet The World’s Richest People Trafficker (He’s A Surprisingly Nice Guy) – Is Every Taylor Swift Song Secretly Marxist? – 5 Reasons Why Drinking Milk On The Toilet Is Kind Of A Game-Changer A pitch-perfect jab at digital media as a throwaway joke that 99% of viewers missed (I missed it- got them from this writeup). This show is so great.
  18. My take was he's basically dead inside and is looking for anything that makes him feel even slightly alive. The blow, the party/"looking for ##### like a ####ing techno Gatsby," having some dude drive him around on a motorcycle (Season 1 opened with him in the traditional "rich guy in the back seat of a big black car" setup), firing a bunch of people in a manner far more cruel than necessary and then not even reacting when someone spits in his face - all of it seems like he's a dead man walking and just wants to feel something. Shoplifting is another way to do that.
  19. You inserted yourself into a conversation I was having with jon and said: And then in your next post you (wrongly) tried to tell me what was actually motivating my position and then told me that I was wrong about conservatives and Jews and I should "get used to it." And then in your third post you repeated the "horse####" accusation and called what I said "the worst of identity politics." And then your fourth post was entirely about me. Come on, man. We've always gotten along well despite our differences and I'm proud of that. But I think it's pretty clear that you both initiated and aggravated our current sparring session. Even if I didn't have an obvious personal connection to this issue, you did more than enough to make it personal.
  20. I haven't merely charged conservatives with hypocrisy and/or outright anti-Semitism about the conflict. I've proved it. It's well-established in the two articles Iinked and countless others. You can't explain why, for example, Steve Daines seems to be far more concerned about the alleged anti-Semitism of Omar and Tlaib than he is about the confirmed anti-Semitism of Richard Spencer whose movement appears to be headquartered in his state. You can't explain why the Trump administration is levying anti-Semitism charges on those members while preventing the FBI and DOJ from fighting the rise of white nationalism in America. You can't explain why Fox News airs segments levying similar accusations while continuing to push a conspiracy theory was clearly tied to the Tree of Life massacre. You can't explain why the GOP has called for Ilhan Omar to resign but appears to have no problem with Steve King not only staying in the House but staying in their party as well. You can't explain these things because the obvious explanation is that they're hypocritical opportunism at best, and for some reason you are unable to admit that obvious conclusion that is backed by countless examples. So instead you attack me with meaningless claims of "identity politics" on your way out the door. Happy trails.
  21. Sorry, but you don't get to "take a hard pass" and then tell me in the next breath that my concern about the rise of white nationalism and how it affects my family's safety and security is "horse####, and the worst of identity politics." If you wanted to take a pass, you could have ended your post after the first sentence. If you want to lecture me about anti-Semitism and "identity politics," at least have the courage to acknowledge that's what you're doing and allow me to respond instead of insulting me with one foot out the door.
  22. Are you suggesting that the reason I'm calling out (obvious) hypocrisy in the conservative movement's "fight" against anti-Semitism is not because I'm concerned about white nationalists, but because I'm concerned about voting patterns? Seriously? Also, you should read the actual articles I linked and quoted. They make actual logical points. Like for example they clearly show Steve Daines' hypocrisy on anti-Semitism considering the lack of Jews in his state and his silence about Richard Spencer's Montana-headquartered movement. If you wish to discuss those actual facts and arguments, I'm happy to do so. If you prefer a long-winded, empty rant about a made-up political faction as you attempt to lecture a Jew about anti-Semitism when my actual priority is actually just my kids not getting murdered at synagogue by people that the GOP and conservative media try to pretend don't exist, I'll pass.
  23. OK, but even if you read it that way it wouldn't mean I accused jon of embracing white nationalism. He could have been one of the conservatives I described who "feign interest in fighting anti-Semitism when it serves a narrow political purpose, and then turn around and ignore ... white nationalism." Either way his attack on me was an irrational representation of what I said and totally uncalled for.
  24. I genuinely have no idea what the heck you're trying to say here. And I have a sneaking suspicion that is for the best.