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Thursday, July 31, 2003

Superman to the rescue: Christopher Reeve just returned from a five-day trip to Israel where he visited several of Israel's institutions specializing in spinal injury and stem-cell research and complimented their work. He also met Israelis with injuries similar to his own, and talked of how impressed he was with Israel's facilities for handicapped visitors. On the last day, he donned a kippah and went to the Western Wall with his son Matthew.
posted by Benyamin | 6:13 PM | Link | (4) comments |

Vulcan on Vaudeville: Just when you think Spock and his nude photos have left the building, think again. Page Six reports that Leonard Nimoy will be taking his explicit nude photos of women wearing tefillin to the stage. The balletic piece will begin November 19th at New York University's new Skirball Center. Note to Trekkies: Nude woman and Spock in the same room. Breathe. Ok, now keep surfing.
posted by Benyamin | 12:54 PM | Link | (0) comments |
Wednesday, July 30, 2003

Kosher neo-Nazi goes penile: Anybody wondering what happened to Andrew Britt Greenbaum (aka Davis Wolfgang Hawke, aka Bo Decker), the not-so-nice Jewish boy turned neo-Nazi whose credentials in the white power movement went south when his Hebrew heritage was exposed? Neither were we, but Salon was apparently on his trail, because they found him in his new life as Dave Bridger, purveyor of penis-enlargment pills.

We're still investigating if this is all just a clever anti-Semitic ploy to appeal to stereotypes about sexually diminutive Jewish guys.
posted by Bradford | 8:13 PM | Link | (0) comments |

By the power of Greyskull...: Apparently, God is not all-powerful. Jim Carrey won't be going to promote his film Bruce Almighty in Kuala Lumpur. That's because the Malaysian country is banning the movie from being shown. "It's not appropriate to show the film in this country," Abdul Hamid Zainal, a minister in the Prime Minister's Department, was quoted as saying. We didn't think it was appropriate to show it anywhere.
posted by Benyamin | 5:10 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Show me the love: In case you were wondering, the sixth annual Love Parade -- a salute to love and tolerance, to gaudy get-ups and Techno Rave -- will be held August 25-31 in the city of Tel Aviv. According to the press release sent to Jewsweek: These young Jewish singles will be checking out the late night Tel Aviv discos, hip java cafes, trendy boutiques and bars, a whole slew of Israel's modern and ancient treasures -- and each other, as they seek their Summer Love." Sounds to us like a promo for a new reality show.

Postscript: One other thing. Although one of the festival's sponsors is the popular Jewish singles' site JDate, the festivals' Web site inadvertently links to its competitor JCupid when you first log on. Oops.
posted by Benyamin | 4:59 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Yada yoga: The Protocols notes coverage of a new fad in Holy Hefting -- the Christian gym, complete with appropriate music, dress, and prayer schedule. Just don't expect to do your workouts on Sunday. Also noted is Jewish Yoga at the Yoga Garden, "a place where Jews can relax, meditate and get their bodies in shape while honoring the commandments of the Torah." For these Jews, there's no place like ohm.

Meanwhile, a group of Chassidic Jews are finding another form of heavy lifting. Newsday reports "A slightly fuzzy, black and white surveillance video played Tuesday in a darkened U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Central Islip showed five men, three of them in Hasidic garb, carting boxes through the doors of the Brentwood offices of Allou Healthcare Inc. in the middle of the night ... Congress Financial has charged that the Jacobses, who are Hasidic Jews, surreptitiously removed records from Allou. The lender also claims that Allou's inventories and income statements were inflated and that money was diverted from the public company to other Jacobs family businesses."

Ah, the sheer beauty of not having to make these juicy tidbits up? Priceless.
posted by Benyamin | 4:37 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Where's the beef?: So many jokes, so little sapce. Yochanan Lambiase has long dreamed of teaching young men to become knowledgeable kosher chefs, trained not only in the crafts of cooking but also in all the intricate Jewish laws concerning food preparation. "We are witnessing an explosion in international Jewish catering," explains Lambiase, "And this is creating a demand for top-quality chefs who understand the complex requirements of kashrut. Catering is a respectable and profitable career, and I am hoping to teach Orthodox young men both the skills and the theory they need to join this growing industry." His hope and desires are coming in the form of his new school the Kosher Culinary Academy in Jerusalem which will open its doors in October. Cholent -- it's what's for dinner.
posted by Benyamin | 1:35 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Proud papa ... not: According to the London Express Madonnaís father-in-law thinks her new-found religion is a little hokey. "I'm not sure about Kabbalah," John Ritchie told the newspaper. "At 74, I'm too old to become involved in a cult. I think life is for living and that you don't need to add any extra adjectives to explain how to do that. You should just get on with it."
posted by Benyamin | 9:40 AM | Link | (0) comments |
Monday, July 28, 2003

Stupid site of the week: Will Yasser Arafat be assasinated? We'll soon know the statistical chances when a new Web site is launched this week which allows users to bet on the chances that a particular act of terror will occur. The Policy Analysis Market will act like a futures market to predict future turmoil in the Mideast and other world hot spots. Most surprising? The people who are running the site. Sit down -- you're going to be shocked. The United States government is paying for this site. Sen. Byron Dorgan of North Dakota described the program as useless, offensive and, not surprisingly, "unbelievably stupid." We couldn't agree more.
posted by Benyamin | 8:41 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Digital divorce: If you're married to a Muslim in Malaysia, you may want to think twice about checking your text messages from now on. An advisor to the Prime Minister has asserted that men can divorce their wives via text message, assuming the message is clear and unambiguous. "I want a divorce," sounds pretty clear. Under Islamic law, said message need only be declared three times, which probably means any wife who just got two such messages might want to turn her cell phone off.
posted by Bradford | 5:41 PM | Link | (0) comments |

A show about nothing: According to inside sources, The Producers, Mel Brook's Broadway play based on his movie about a Broadway play about Hitler, will score some street cred when it is featured on the season finale of HBO's Curb Your Enthusiasm. The season of Larry David's angst-ridden Jewish alter ego's comedy series has not even begun, but sources close to the Broadway production of The Producers. said that Larry David and David Schwimmer taped the segment last week in New York. Apparently, in the television show, David and Schwimmer take over the lead roles of the hit musical. Ah, if only art would imitate life.
posted by Benyamin | 4:18 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Can we date? We knew JDate was the old workhorse of Jewish dating sites, but we didn't know its median age was rising so much. On Monday morning's episode of Live with Regis and Kelly borscht-belt comedienne Joan Rivers admitted she's on JDate to help spice up her social life. She says she prefers older men but, at her age, they all seem to be dying. She told Regis: "One guy got down on his knees and said, 'Will you be my widow?'.
posted by Benyamin | 9:44 AM | Link | (0) comments |
Sunday, July 27, 2003

Mad about Mel (and we don't mean Brooks): Speaking of Regis, it seems his former co-host is getting her name in the news again. It appears that Kathie Lee Gifford is a big fan of Mel Gibson and especially of his upcoming Jesus biopic The Passion. She proclaims her undying affection on her Web site: "All I saw was a 4 minute trailer from the film but that was enough for me to predict that Mel has made the most powerful film ever made -- it is simply indescribable. Mel is being unfairly persecuted for making this film by the very same people who scream "bigot," "intolerant," "racist" at everybody else. Itís a sad commentary on this world that he is being so tormented for something that he has every right to doóas an artist in a free country and a devout Catholic in a country where he is supposed to have the freedom to express and practice his own faith. And heís made the movie with his own money! Mel has amazing conviction and courage and Iím truly inspired and encouraged by him. Please let him know if you feel the same way -- he deserves all the encouragement we can give him."

It seems Gifford isn't that close with Gibson. The director held a special screening of the entire film for friends last week and the former talk show host was not invited.
posted by Benyamin | 12:58 PM | Link | (0) comments |
Wednesday, July 23, 2003

Bombs away: Schoenefeld Airport in East Berlin is sitting on top of thousands of live bombs. But, don't worry. They weren't planted there by would-be terrorists. They were put there by Hitler as a secret hiding place. Seriously. Well, the secret is out. According to the Stasi, the "secret" police of East Germany, they have not only found live ammunition but also Nazi fighter planes, all fuelled and fully bombed-up stored in bunkers some nine meters below ground. It's good to know the Nazis are geared up and ready to go if necessary.
posted by Benyamin | 11:37 AM | Link | (0) comments |

Go to hell: We all hope that in our times of need, there will be a rabbi around to nurture us with spiritual sustenance. Especially at a time of death, it is the rabbi's duty to help the survivors get through the difficult time, somehow explaining that it was all God's will and everything happens for the best. Well, if that's the case, then it's a good thing that Scott Mansfield is a member of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Santa Fe and not a rabbi. The New Mexico priest is being sued by a family in his congregation for saying, quite possible, the stupidest thing ever uttered by a clergy at a funeral. According to court documents, at the funeral of Ben Martinez, Mansfield said that the deceased had been "living in sin," "lukewarm in his faith" and that "the Lord vomited people like Ben out of his mouth to hell." Although there were more than 200 people in attendance, the Church vehemently denies the allegations. That being said, they have moved Rev. Mansfield to a different neighborhood, chalking it up to a "routine" transfer.
posted by Benyamin | 10:50 AM | Link | (0) comments |

Sex in the shuk: Various news reports recently have indicated that Sex in the City star Sarah Jessica Parker will travel to Israel right before Rosh Hashanah to help promote an Israeli version of Cosmopolitan magazine. Good timing.

Thanks to Pinchas at Protocols for bringing this to our attention.
posted by Benyamin | 8:53 AM | Link | (0) comments |

The artist formerly known as Madonna: A week just wouldn't be a week without us mentioning something to do with our favorite pop icon, Madonna. It seems the Material Girl has done more than just find a new religion (Kabbalism, for those of you interested) -- she's also found a new name. According to close friends of the singer, she is now telling people to call her Esther, preferring the name of the Biblical heroine to her own Italian-birth name of Madonna Louise Veronica Ciccone. Now word yet on whether her husband, Guy Ritchie, will be switching his name to Mordechai.
posted by Benyamin | 8:50 AM | Link | (0) comments |
Tuesday, July 22, 2003

Claus call: At the 40th annual Father Christmas World Congress held in Copenhagen over the weekend, it was finally determined where Santa Claus comes from. No, it's not the North Pole -- it's Greenland. Some are already disputing that edict. According to Reuters, "Finnish Lapland, traditional rival of Greenland for the title, was not represented at the congress." As well, "the Santa summit also ignored historical evidence rooting their traditions in Turkey, where fourth-century Christian Saint Nicholas of Myra helped the poor and needy." So, Where's Hanukah Harry from?
posted by Benyamin | 5:54 PM | Link | (0) comments |

I'm so sorry. Now please take these handcuffs off of me: For centuries, the Jewish sages have taught that a man can redeem from punishment by truly repenting for his sins. Apparently, the British government now agrees with that. Under new "restorative justice" plans outlined by the UK government on Tuesday, criminals could avoid jail time and punishment if they simply and publicly apologize to their victims. Ironically, the news comes a week after reports showed a 28 percent rise in violent crime in England. Wonder if Kobe Bryant could just apologize and have his slate swiped clean.
posted by Benyamin | 5:22 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Freakin' rabbi: The Protocols blog links to a "rabbi" who likes to get his freak on, singing along in a BuyMusic.com commercial to the Rick James song "Superfreak." A whole other kind of Hasidic Rebel, he may be airing soon on a television station near you.
posted by Benyamin | 4:55 PM | Link | (0) comments |

It's a bird, it's a plane, it's not kosher: U.S. Airways is going the way of Nerds candy. Beginning July 1st, the Virginia-based airline stopped offering kosher food options on its flights. Except for those traveling first class -- those lucky few still get to partake in that god-awful Wilton's frozen turkey sandwich. Instead of offering specialty meals for kosher and vegan customers, U.S. Airways has followed the path of its major competitors by offering high-end gourmet cuisine at a price. A look at their new menu includes such non-kosher delicacies as Prosciutto Ham and Melon Salad and a Ham Muffaletta Sandwich. Mmmm. Believe it or not, the Anti-Defamation League actually commented on this story. "We find it most insensitive and rather discouraging," said David Friedman, the regional office director of the ADL in D.C. "It's a serious step backward and sends a message to many people that their patronage simply is not wanted." Now, explain again why people want disgusting food at 30,000 feet?
posted by Benyamin | 3:55 PM | Link | (0) comments |

An advertisement for cell phones?: Four teenage girls were picked up by Israeli police last week for allegedly selling sexual services. According to Ha'aretz Daily, "the four all admitted that for the past six weeks they have been providing sexual services -- but not full sex -- in order to finance their summer vacation activities. They wanted to use the money to fund trips and buy new clothes." According to police, the oldest girl, age 15, used her cell phone to coordinate the meetings. Now, that's what we call phone sex.
posted by Benyamin | 1:54 PM | Link | (0) comments |
Monday, July 21, 2003

Crossing hairs: A Polish artist got in big trouble last week for exhibiting an image of a man's penis attached to a cross. Apparently he violated the blasphemy law in Warsaw, a Roman Catholic country, and was fined $500 and is forbidden to travel anywhere for six months. No word on whether Mel Gibson was outraged as well.
posted by Benyamin | 3:01 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Classified of the week: This from the current issue of the Forward: JEWISH TOYMAKER/ARTIST 33 yr. old, semi-Orthodox. Raised by shepherds, has yet to be introduced to Jewish community, and wishes to relocate. Thin, fair looking, lively and affectionate. Keeps solitary faith/self edcuated. Praying for SJW, loving commitment and innoncent romance.
posted by Benyamin | 12:16 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Has anybody seen the dowry?: Apparently, a December 2001 suggestion by the Agudath Israel to curb extravagant Jewish wedding expenses isn't holding much weight with a Brooklyn bride. A Syrian-Jewish bride will wear America's most expensive wedding gown this summer as she stands under the chuppah. It's price tag? A cool $300,000. Wonder what kind of smorgasbord they're having.
posted by Benyamin | 10:04 AM | Link | (0) comments |
Wednesday, July 16, 2003

The road less traveled: The Devil don't come round here no more. Route 666, made famous in such films as Natural Born Killers among other films and songs, will be no longer. The "Devil's Highway" will be officially renamed the more staid Route 491 at the end of the month.

Maybe Mapquest can help us find another way to hell.
posted by Benyamin | 3:36 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Our lips are sealed. No, seriously: The Mormon Tabernacle Choir may be inspiring to hear, but that's only if you actually hear them. At their July 4th concert with the Boston Pops, the choir actually lip-synched their way through the performance. Sort of like the Milli Vanilli of Mormonism. It wasn't a fraud though, says the choir's general manager. Rather, due to the complexities of live acoustics and the requirements of audio recording, the choir was forced to pull a Britney.
posted by Benyamin | 3:35 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Pray until it hurts: There must be some weird genetic mutation in the blood of religious broadcasters. Like Jerry Falwell before him, Pat Robertson has now joined the (700) club of idiots saying idiotic things on television. On Monday, Robertson has launched a 21-day "prayer offensive" directed at the Supreme Court in the wake of its 6-3 June vote that decriminalized sodomy. Robertson wrote on his Web site that the ruling "has opened the door to homosexual marriage, bigamy, legalized prostitution and even incest." He also said that three of the Court's judges should be, um, pushed out of their job by saying that they were all too old or to frail to continue in their capacity. The Today Show's Katie Couric followed the logical conclusion and asked Robertson on Wednesday morning if that meant he was praying for their deaths. Robertson had a hard time saying no.

Oh, one more thing -- an announcement from our local synagogue: Please join us this Shabbat for a kiddush sponsored in honor of Pat Robertson. Nothing will be served. Please RSVP to kike@kkk.com.
posted by Benyamin | 3:11 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Superman to the rescue: Christopher Reeve is traveling to Israel at the end of the month to visit with and victims of Palestinian attacks. According to Agence France Presse, "The Hollywood icon is due to meet a young Ethiopian Jew who has been in a wheelchair since he was wounded in a suicide attack in May 2002 and with whom Reeve has been corresponding."
posted by Benyamin | 2:08 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Graceful entrance: Congrats to Debra "I'm proud to be Jewish" Messing, star of NBC's Will and Grace for scoring her first starring role in a film. Something Borrowed, about a woman who hires a male escort to pose as her boyfriend which co-stars Dermot Mulrooney (About Schmidt, Friends) as said escort, will hit theaters sometime next year.
posted by Benyamin | 1:44 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Clothes call: Looks like Madonna is getting back to her Material Girl roots as she will be shilling for the GAP in upcoming advertisements. Apparently, she will use the extra exposure to help promote her new children's Kaballah book to be released on September 15th.

Ah, the beauties of cross-marketing.
posted by Benyamin | 10:24 AM | Link | (0) comments |

More Monica?: Our favorite Jewish intern is back in the news again. MSNBC reports that Monica Lewinsky is in England now attending a $600-a-day fat farm called Grayshott Hall to help her shed some of that extra weight. Ironically, Bill Clinton is also hanging out across the pond in London as well. Wonder if Bubba's going to the fat farm as well.
posted by Benyamin | 10:11 AM | Link | (0) comments |
Tuesday, July 15, 2003

Grand plan: People may be awestruck and appreciate the handiwork of God when they see a natural wonder such as the Grand Canyon. But after this week, they'll have to keep it quiet. A bunch of plaques donated to the park by the Evangelical Sisterhood of Mary in Phoenix, which were inscribed with passages from the Book of Psalms (specifically, by chapter and verse 68:4, 66:4 and 104.24), were taken down this week. The plaques were removed after the ACLU claimed they violated the so-called "separation of church and state."

"They are religious plaques on federal buildings and that's not allowed based on the law," says Maureen Oltrogge, a Grand Canyon National Park spokeswoman.

Ironically, the park service decided that a number of the canyon's formations can be named after Hindu gods. We're still waiting for some Jewish references such as the Oy Overlook, the Cohen Cliffs, and the Moskowitz Mountains.
posted by Benyamin | 11:24 AM | Link | (0) comments |

To be or not to be: Jewish actor Liev Schreiber is on the stage this summer -- but not in air-conditioned theater. He's starring in the Public Theater production of "Henry V" in Central Park. "I think when you are starting out and trying to make a living, it is always a good idea to play your strengths and market what you know," he says. "I was just comfortable and at home with classical texts. I also felt like I had purpose in those texts -- I felt function, I felt form. I think Shakespeare's plays, to put it in the old vernacular Jewish, are mitzvahs and I think that they are good to do because they mean something."
posted by Benyamin | 11:09 AM | Link | (0) comments |

I'd like to use my Jesus coupon, please: Talk about having divine intervention. Former Dallas Cowboy and all-around interesting fella Deion Sanders scored in court this week when he won a case against Magrathea Inc., a vintage-car restoration business which filed a lawsuit claiming that Sanders refused to pay a $4,265.57 car repair bill because Jesus had informed him that $1,500 was all he had to pay. During his testimony, Mr. Sanders took issue with Mr. Compton's attorney, Ed Edson, who said Sanders had asked for a Jesus discount. "I told you about making a mockery of God," Sanders said. "You can play with me, but don't play with God."
posted by Benyamin | 11:00 AM | Link | (0) comments |

Farewell Fleischer: Oh. Ari, we hardly knew ye. White House Press Secretary officially stepped down from his post at a press conference on Monday to spend more time with his shiksa goddess wife. After thanking a potpourri of people, Flesicher said, "The final person I want to thank is, of course, the president, a person who gave me this opportunity to serve my country, a person in whom I believe so deeply."
posted by Benyamin | 10:24 AM | Link | (0) comments |
Monday, July 14, 2003

Jesus Christ Superstar: After all the recent hullabaloo over the upcoming Mel Gibson film about the last day of Jesus' life, we finally get a sneak peek at what everyone is talking about. The film's trailer is now online and, like all films without English in it, has now spoken words in it -- just a lot of moaning and morose music. The Passion stars James Caviezel (Count of Monte Cristo, Frequency) as the bearded one who gets nailed and Monica Bellucci (The Matrix Reloaded, Tears of the Sun) as Mary -- i.e. the one who doesn't get nailed, but has a kid anyway.

We still don't know why everyone is getting excited about this. C'mon people -- we already know he's going to die at the end.

Thanks to Avraham and our friends at the Protocols blog for bringing this to our attention.
posted by Benyamin | 10:21 PM | Link | (0) comments |
Sunday, July 13, 2003

Truman takes on the Jews: In a newly rediscovered diary of former president Harry Truman, who's famous for helping post-war Jews and backing the creation of Israel, it turns out that Mr. Truman wasn't terribly fond of Jews after all. In one entry, he wrote, "The Jews, I find, are very, very selfish. They care not how many ... get murdered or mistreated ... as long as the Jews get special treatment." That's surprising enough, but more disturbing yet: "...neither Hitler nor Stalin has anything on them for cruelty or mistreatment to the under dog."

So how do we remember Truman now? Former president disliked Jews, so he decided to help them and support Israel? How does that work?
posted by Bradford | 2:19 PM | Link | (0) comments |
Friday, July 11, 2003

Boring news alert: This press release was just sent to us from our friends at the UJC with the headline in bold font and all in caps so it must be urgent: ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER ARIEL SHARON ADDRESSES NORTH AMERICAN JEWISH FEDERATION LEADERSHIP. And the article began: "Addressing the road map to peace, terrorism, security issues, and the importance of continuing solidarity between North American Jewry and Israelis during a critical time in the history of the Jewish homeland, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon met with leaders from North American Jewish federations on Thursday, during the United Jewish Communities (UJC) 2004 Campaign Chairmen & Directors Mission."

And .... that's when we fell asleep.
posted by Benyamin | 5:58 PM | Link | (0) comments |
Wednesday, July 09, 2003

Frumwear with a flair: Have you ever seen an Orthodox woman and wonder where she got her genre-busting clothing? Well, we have your answer. A new site, appropriately called ModestClothing.com sells long skirts, dress sets, and, of course, head coverings on their surprisingly slick site. And no mannequins here -- live models strut the clothing line's products which all come direct from Jerusalem. While you're at the site, also check out the kitsch "Shabbat: Just Do it" sweatshirt and the fascinating scarf tying techniques. And, for a good read, take a look at the testimonials section. Who knew there was a market for Jewish fashion in Sylvania, Ohio or Fenton, Montana?

Thanks to Steven I. Weiss and our friends at the Protocols blog for bringing this to our attention.
posted by Benyamin | 1:14 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Heaven help us: Some Jews don't believe in the after-life, but Mike Tyson certainly does. In an interview with Fox Sports Net that will air next week, the troubled boxer says he no longer has a soul or a reason to live. "Maybe in my next life, Iíll have a better life," he says. "And that's why I'm just looking forward to go to the other world. 'Cause I really hate the way I live now. And I hate my life now." Olam Haba, you've been warned.
posted by Benyamin | 9:09 AM | Link | (0) comments |
Tuesday, July 08, 2003

Revenging German Jews: Believe it or not, one of the new global hotspots for Jewish emigration is -- drum roll, please -- Germany. According to a Newsweek feature on the ever-increasing Jewish population of Germany, the total number of Jews in the home base of the Holocaust is 200,000. That's up from the 15,000 Jews who remained post-Holocaust and heading towards half of the 500,000 who lived there before World War II. More shocking still is Germany's newest achievement, taking in more former Soviet Jews than even Israel.

For some, who can't help but see Germany through the lens of Hitler and Nazism, these are troubling statistics. In the words of one German rabbi, however, "What better revenge against Hitler than when I take a hundred happy Jewish children from summer camp and walk with them through the old streets of Berlin?" What better revenge, indeed.
posted by Bradford | 9:31 PM | Link | (0) comments |

God save the prez: The forthcoming August issue of Vanity Faiir (the one that's been getting all kinds of attention because it contains the lurid new details of the rocky relationship between JFK Jr. and his wife shortly before they died) has another story which caught our attention. In "God and Man in the White House", contributor Christopher Hitchens explores evidence of America's fundamentalist tilt and how Bush, who has an interesting case of late-onset Christianity, has been chipping away at the sacred wall between church and state. "As a result of 'Community Bible Study'," the article writes, "Bush is now as abstemious as any Muslim or strict Hindu or 1920s biblical-Protestant prohibitionists." This issue of the magazine will be on newsstands next week.
posted by Benyamin | 9:14 AM | Link | (0) comments |
Monday, July 07, 2003

Savage beast: MSNBC has fired conservative talk show host Michael Savage after he told one of his callers that he wished they got AIDS. Savage, a Jewish kid from the Bronx whose real name is Michael Alan Weiner, told a caller, "Oh, you're one of the sodomites! You should only get AIDS and die, you pig!"

What an idiot!
posted by Benyamin | 8:49 PM | Link | (0) comments |

I want my MTV: Mover over Beyonce. The first 24-hour all-music television station in Israel is about to be launched. "The format of the station will be somewhere between MTV and VH1," Amir Golan, the station's marketing director, told the Jerusalem Post. "With MTV, they're basically saying if you're over 18, then move on to VH1. We're not like that, and anyway, Israeli music is a bit different."

No word yet on who will be the Israeli version of Carson Daly. May we suggest Carson Daly?
posted by Benyamin | 7:37 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Film noir: And the Holocaust wins again. After being pelted with an egg (left) during his April 2000 libel suit against Holocaust historian Deborah Lipstadt, it looked like Irving's career was going to down the tubes. But this week things looked up for the Irving who was showcasing his new documentary The Search for Truth in History at the Melbourne Underground Film Festival despite protests from the local Jewish community. A ruling by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Appeals Tribunal on Monday allowed the screening to take place.

But, in the end, Irving ended up with his tail between his legs. A thousand protesters were reportedly planning on crashing the event and that was enough to freak out festival organizers. "There was going to be a large demonstration, and after speaking with police we decided we couldn't guarantee the safety of our patrons," said festival director Richard Wolstencroft. "This whole thing has been very scary ... we have no intention to play a film of historical revisionism ever again."

This was not the only controversial film on the docket at the festival. A 60-minute documentary entitled The Israel-Palestine Conflict: A Palestinian Perspective by Arab journalist Said Arikat has also been causing a stir. The film, according to the festival's program, takes "aim at the hypocrisy of U.S. policy in the Middle East."

Question to ponder: Is Australia the new France?
posted by Benyamin | 5:18 PM | Link | (0) comments |
Friday, July 04, 2003

Vegan eater suing: It would appear that some Jewish inmates at the infamous Rikers Island prison in New York aren't getting their food the way they like it. Though it's unknown if kosher meals are available on demand, three Jewish inmates aren't content with kosher; they want vegan food. The prison's refusal to serve this has prompted a lawsuit, citing religious freedom and now PETA has signed on to support it.

Considering that kashrut doesn't require veganism, per se, who knows if they've got a legal leg to stand on, but it wouldn't be the first time Chosen People had to fight for their right to be, well... chosen behind bars. For more information on those prison advocacies, check out the Aleph Institute and Jewish Prisoner Services International.
posted by Bradford | 12:13 PM | Link | (0) comments |
Thursday, July 03, 2003

Can you say oops?: This from our friends at the Jewish Journal North of Boston: "Officials of Harvard University and Harvard Divinity School may soon decide to return a $2.5 million gift theyíve already accepted from an Arab sheikh who funds anti-Semitic, anti-Israeli and Holocaust-denying research. According to sources close to the university, Harvard is looking for ways to return the money without setting a precedent for future gifts, as well as helping all parties involved to save face."

So what if they're anti-Semitic? Can't we still take their money? Maybe use it to build a Jewish center on campus. That'll show 'em.
posted by Benyamin | 9:20 PM | Link | (0) comments |
Wednesday, July 02, 2003

One of these things is not like the other: Last week Jewsweek was asked to attend a hot Los Angeles soiree hosted by the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding. The party, held at the swank home of producer Steve Rifkind, was abuzz with A-list celebs including Red Dragon director Brett Ratner, American Idol judge Randy Jackson, and famed film legend Robert Evans. The event was honoring Jews and Blacks to help promote interracial harmony. One person who, um, couldn't make the event was co-host Russell Simmons who had to stay on the East Coast due to some new legal trouble.

We did manage to snag a few pics while there including this one of (from left to right): Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds, Randy Jackson and Rabbi Marc Schneier.

All we can say is that it was pretty good timing: Strom Thurmond, who wasn't such a big fan of both Jews and Blacks, died two days later.
posted by Benyamin | 12:35 AM | Link | (0) comments |
Tuesday, July 01, 2003

Graphic violence: While most media outlets use generic flag and Dome of the Rock graphics to display the ongoing Mideast conflict, the British-based Financial Times is taking a decidely different approach. Instead of focusing on peace efforts, the graphic displays a rifle on top of a morphed Israeli-Palestinian flag. Talk about the glass being half empty.
posted by Benyamin | 7:20 PM | Link | (0) comments |

Hardwired: Keta-Keta is an Israeli "Intertainment" company that creates Web-exclusive video promotions for their clients. In their steamy, seminal portfolio piece, they plead with the viewer to "Make Love, Not Terror." [Requires Windows Media Player]
posted by Mobius1ski | 2:01 PM | Link | (0) comments |

It man: Actor Paul Rudd was just named one of the 100 most creative people in entertainment by the editors of Entertainment Weekly. In the magazine's most recent issue, Rudd talks about the worst job he's ever held -- costarring in an educational film about sexual molestation. ''The director wanted to do a take where I talk about Jesus -- all of this was kept from me when I signed on. I wouldn't do it, and he threw the 'You'll never work in this town again.' I'm Jewish -- I'm not going to say that stuff.''

For those of you who are not familiar with Rudd, we reccomend two seminal performances to get you acquainted with him: 1) the most recent episodes of Friends in which he stars as Phoebe's boyfriend/finacee and 2) the hilarious Jewish summer camp romp Wet Hot American Summer.
posted by Benyamin | 9:31 AM | Link | (0) comments |
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