Israel’s ultra-Orthodox turn to consumer clout

Dear Editor,

Orthodox Jews are in the news so Amy Teibel is back. Where the modal anti-Semite sees in anything proof that Jews are ruling the world, Mrs. Teibel sees power-hungry religious Jews behind anything that she doesn’t like. Mind you: she is Israel and the orthodox are outcasts infringing on her anti-religious peace of mind (Never mind that seculars are a minority, that most Israelis are religious or traditional – she IS the majority so the “ultra-orthodox” ARE a minority – and a violent one at that). Let’s go over a number of her shake-ups to notice that she’s still not in therapy (as we advised her before) or that the therapy is not working.

1. Her investigative journalism has brought to discover three ways that the orthodox are trying to control Israel (read: her): violent protests, political clout and market power. Scary!

2. This “fast-growing community has emerged as a consumer powerhouse” – soon she won’t be able to buy anything anymore that “the orthodox” don’t consume. Frightening! She later on admits that the orthodox (with the Arab – she forgot) populations are Israel’s most impoverished communities. But still – she found out about “kosher” places where “they” “park their cash.” (Her comment on Jewish Law about doing business shows that she doesn’t know that all Israeli banks have special regulations so that even Amy won’t violate the injunction on taking or receiving interest.)

3. “About 60 percent of the men do not work, instead pursuing state-subsidized religious studies.” She leaves out that these subsidies are not more than pocket-money for putting in 60 hours of learning a week. Also missing are that many of their spouses work too, enabled by responsible older children taking care of the younger ones. Also not a word about more and more of these men being forced to join the work force and choosing to serve in the army. She can’t use shifting pictures and stereotypes that turn out to be false. Poor Amy.

4. Now, as an AP reporter she cannot quote herself; so she found herself a “religious commentator Kobi Arieli.” Now, we’ve never heard of this clown, but we found this clip of him ridiculing ultra-orthodox Jews on TV (!) http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-2919260203475155038&q=aleph&total=806&start=0&num=10&so=0&type=search&plindex=4# . Now we understand the seriousness of her spokesman. He explains why the religious are like a herd – and implied: Amy Teibel not. And on that we agree. There is only one Amy Teibel – thank G-d.

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