Breaking news: Cancel your flight? From now on you won't be reimbursed and HOW MUCH MONEY YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO GET UNDER THE NEW PLAN and Don’t Identify Jews with ‘White Imperialism’ by By: Melanie Phillips and Black Fathers Matter by Larry Elder and 100-year-old anchors discovered at the Dead Sea and nearly 140,000 businesses on Yelp remain closed since coronavirus hit and comparing Population of Canada with Russia
Yehuda Lave is an author, journalist, psychologist, rabbi, spiritual teacher, and coach, with degrees in business, psychology and Jewish Law. He works with people from all walks of life and helps them in their search for greater happiness, meaning, business advice on saving money, and spiritual engagement. Now also a Blogger on the Times of Israel. Look for my column
That's despite the fact that Ottawa is TEN DEGREES OF LATITUDE FURTHER SOUTH.
You can't even properly compare the other topography of the two countries.
Like the fact that Canada has a lot less soil over its range. We call it the Canadian Shield. That's largely because in its history Canada has actually had a lot more glaciation than Russia.
In truth, the bulk of Russia's population is on the European side of the Ural Mountains. Similarly, the bulk of Canada's population is in the highly habitable St. Lawrence Valley/Great Lakes area.
The rest of Canada is a lot more like Siberia, the Asian part of Russia - cold and dry with limited areas for agriculture.
The European part of Russia is much like the rest of Europe. Lots of land for growing, forest resources (Moscow is largely surrounded by forest) good water routes (all the major rivers run through European Russia).
Canada is harsh. In most places it's cold. Where it's not terribly cold, it can be snowy (Ottawa is a lot snowier than Moscow too) or rainy (like Vancouver).
Meanwhile, Russia has a reputation for harshness that Canadians kind of stifle laughter about.
And of course, Russia had been inhabited for many more years before the colonization of Canada.
Cancel your flight? From now on you won't be reimbursed
49 MKs vote in favor of an amendment to facilitate airlines and exempt them from compensating in event of cancellation or early flight.
The Knesset plenum today approved in second and third reading the Aviation Services Bill, which will make it easier for airlines in the event of cancellation or postponement of a flight but will make it worse for passengers.
Today, airlines are obligated to give passengers a refund and even compensation for flight cancellation or changing its terms. Due to the coronavirus crisis, many flights were canceled and the airlines got into trouble.
Under the new law, as a temporary provision, airlines will be able to offer a passenger a credit instead of returning their money. Also, airlines will not be required under the new law to provide monetary compensation in the event of cancellation or advancing a flight.
In addition, the entitlement of a passenger whose flight is canceled to hotel accommodation will be limited to two nights only.
According to the Aviation Services Bill, the temporary order will apply to a flight to and from Israel whose departure date is from March 1st, 2020, or before that in the case of destinations for which there is an obligation to isolate due to the coronavirus, until August 31, 2020.
The law authorizes the Transport and Road Safety Minister, in consultation with the Economy and Industry Minister and with approval of the Economics Committee, to extend the temporary order for additional periods of up to nine months in total.
The explanation for the law reads: "In the current situation, where airlines have been severely affected by the coronavirus crisis due to a huge drop in demand, as opposed to high fixed expenses that the ability to reduce them is very limited. Continuation of this situation poses a real danger to the continued existence of Israeli airlines as viable companies.
"Due to Israel's geopolitical situation, where practically speaking it is an island state with no land connection with its main trading and tourism partners, the airlines are the main bridge of the State of Israel to the world in the context of movement of people and goods with certain characteristics. Therefore, it is important for the economy to maintain the operating capacity of the airlines in general and of Israeli airlines in particular. In the circumstances created, ways need to be found to reduce the damage to airlines due to the severe crisis in the industry, and the proposed law amendment is one of them."
Joint Arab List MK Ahmed Tibi, who initiated the original law, opposed the amendment. "This is an amendment that repeals the most pro-consumer law that ever was in the Knesset, a law that would reimburse for flight cancellations and delays and that is by definition the most pro-consumer legislation that the Knesset has enacted in recent years," he said.
He added, "I'm proud it's called the Tibi Law and I'm proud that it forces airlines to be accurate with times and to consider mistakes, delays, and cancellations and to reimburse and compensate passengers. I've seen how Economy Committee Chairman MK Margi has difficulty passing this law. Airlines are almost collapsing, so the State is committed to providing direct assistance to airlines. Instead what did they do? Deprive the citizen."
HOW MUCH MONEY YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO GET
Facing rising criticism over his response to the financial crisis touched off by the coronavirus pandemic, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday announced a new NIS 6 billion ($1.75 billion) financial aid package that will see the government cut a check to every Israeli.
The plan will see couples with one child receive a one-time payment of NIS 2,000 ($583), which rises to NIS 2,500 ($729) for those with two children, and NIS 3,000 ($875) for those with three or more. Single Israelis aged 18 and over will each receive NIS 750 ($218).
The funds are to come from social security payments and therefore likely won't require formal legislation to be approved, but rather only ministerial support. CLICK on here to read.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanayhu boasted Wednesday of Israel's success in dealing with the coronavirus outbreak, even as the country reached new highs in daily infections and patients in serious condition, and four more people were added to the death toll.
Netanyahu cited a report from the Financial Times, an international daily, that compared the national death rates per week of various countries so far in 2020 with their rates for the same months in previous years.
Of 21 countries, Israel was one of just three that did not have an excess death rate this year, meaning that coronavirus fatalities had not reached a statistically significant level. The other two were Iceland and Norway. CLICK on here to read more.
The Health Ministry is reportedly expected to change its testing procedures to allow eight to ten samples to be examined at once in order to cut down on testing time and allow for more samples to be inspected.
The tests will be PCR tests — polymerase chain reaction tests — which directly detect viral nucleic acids. If one of the samples in the tube comes back positive for COVID-19, all of the remaining specimens will be tested individually, Ynet reported Thursday.
Health Ministry director Chezy Levy told the news site that he expected his office to roll out the method on a broader scale within days. CLICK on here.
AP — The first COVID-19 vaccine tested in the US revved up people's immune systems just the way scientists had hoped, researchers reported Tuesday — as the shots are poised to begin key final testing.
"No matter how you slice this, this is good news," Dr. Anthony Fauci, the US government's top infectious disease expert, told The Associated Press.
The experimental vaccine, developed by Fauci's colleagues at the National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc., will start its most important step around July 27: A 30,000-person study to prove if the shots really are strong enough to protect against the coronavirus. CLICK on here to read more.
Ideas, that help explain how the world works
The next time you are wallowing in one of those so-called "negative emotions" such as resentment, self-pity or jealousy, don't fight them. Instead, know that the reason you are feeling these emotions right now is because Hashem is showing you a place within yourself that your compassion and emunah have not yet reached. Once you meet yourself with mercy and provide the right healing words, the negativity will begin to fade.
Nearly 140,000 businesses on Yelp remain closed since coronavirus hit
Nearly 140,000 businesses on Yelp remain closed since coronavirus hit
Nearly 140,000 U.S. businesses that closed since March 1 remain shuttered, and just over 40 percent of them have closed for good.
Yelp's latest report on businesses listed on the platform show that more retailers closed than any other businesses during the coronavirus pandemic, but a higher number of restaurants are closing permanently, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Nearly 27,700 retailers closed and 35 percent of them marked themselves as permanently closed. While just under 24,000 restaurants have closed since the beginning of March, 53 percent of them are considered permanently closed. Around 175,000 Yelp-listed businesses were closed in April, meaning about 35,000 have reopened since then.
Some of those businesses could soon close again as the number of positive COVID-19 cases rise nationwide. Texas, California and Arizona account for nearly half of the almost 40,000 new cases reported Thursday.
Rabbi Meir Kahane- Parshat Chukat
Kahane on the Parsha
Rabbi Meir Kahane- Parshat Chukat
CHUKIM: TO WHAT END???
The Torah declares concerning the Red Heifer, "This is the chok of the Torah" (Numbers 19:2). Rashi comments: "Since Satan and the nations ridicule Israel, saying, 'What is this commandment and what is its rationale?' the Torah uses the word 'chok,' as if to say, 'It is a divine decree and you have no license to question it.'"
Truthfully, however, why DID G-d give us chukim which Satan and the nations would be able to ridicule for being irrational? The answer is that the chukim are certainly rational, but the Torah leaves us in the dark so that they operate solely as decrees, serving as prototypes for all the other commandments. They inform us that we must relate to all mitzvot as decrees - we must do them simply because G-d said so - even if the reason for some of them are relatively straightforward. The Sifra (as quoted by Rashi to Kedoshim 20:26) states:
"How do we know that a man should not say, 'I cannot abide pork, I cannot bear to wear a garment of Shaatnez,' but should rather say, 'I can eat the pork and wear the garment, but what can I do if my Father in Heaven has decreed otherwise?' It is said (Leviticus 20:26), 'And I have separated you from the nations that you should be Mine' - that you should be separated from them for My Name's sake and accept the yoke of heaven."
Doing the mitzvot out of submission to G-d brings merit to the Jewish people. As the Rabbis said: "The Torah states, 'Only be steadfast in not eating the blood, for the blood is the life' (Deuteronomy 12:23). If we are awarded for abstaining from blood, something which man finds disgusting, then how much more so will we bring merit to ourselves, our children, and all our descendants until the end of time if we abstain from thievery or illicit relations, things which man craves and desires" (Makkot 23b).
Even without G-d's commands, there are many mitzvot a person would fulfill anyway, either because they are loathsome (e.g., consuming blood) or because they are moral and beneficial (e.g., honoring one's parents). If, however, he fulfills them not because they are divine commands but because they seem logical, he does NOT achieve the holiness one attains as a result of breaking one's lust, arrogance, and ego. Only when a person does a mitzvah because he is COMMANDED can he ascend spiritually.
G-d therefore COMMANDED us not to consume blood, transforming an instinctive act into a holy means of quashing the ego. This is the intent of R. Chanania ben Akashia's comment that "G-d wished to bring Israel merit (l'zakot); He therefore provided them with much Torah and mitzvot" (ibid.). The word "l'zakot" connotes not only merit (zechut), but purity (zach). G-d wished to purify His people and refine them of the dross of egotism. He wished to purge their egos and place fetters on the bestial will and pride of man. He therefore gave us the mitzvot. When man performs all his deeds exclusively in accordance with the command of G-d, he becomes purified and ascends spiritually, which is the purpose of life.
The Rabbis said: "Does G-d care whether a person chooses a kosher animal or a non-kosher one; whether he slaughters it properly before consuming it or not? Does it help G-d? Does it harm Him? [No, rather the] mtizvot were given to refine Israel and mankind" (Tanchuma, Shemini 8).
The Jewish Idea
100-year-old anchors discovered at the Dead Sea
The 100-year-old anchor was discovered on the northern part of the land exposed by the receding Dead Sea. By TOBIAS SIEGAL
A security officer of the Megilot Regional Council in southern Israel recently discovered an anchor belonging to a sailboat from the 1920s. The 100-year-old anchor was discovered on the northern part of the land exposed by the receding Dead Sea, a phenomenon that doesn't seem to be slowing down and has created many problems such as dangerous sinkholes. Read More Related Articles
Up until the 1960s, the only means of transportation around the Dead Sea was maritime transport, as highway 90, stretching all the way from Metula to Eilat, along the western bank of the Dead Sea, didn't yet exist. Therefore, it wasn't uncommon for ships to cross the sea from its northern part to its southern part, while using a wooden pier near one of the factories for docking. It was near that wooden pier, which is mostly preserved to this day, that Dror Sinai, security officer of the Megilot Regional Council, found the admiralty anchors. He discovered three anchors in one location; two large ones and a medium-sized one, possibly belonging to the same ship. The anchors that were found are made of iron and are believed to have been made in the 1920s. The medium-sized anchors are 1 meter in length and weigh 70 kilograms, while the larger one is 2 meters long, weighing a total of 110 kilograms. Following the discovery, the Megilot Regional Council stated that although there was previous evidence that pointed at ships sailing the Dead Sea before highway 90 existed, finding 100-year-old anchors is an exiting discovery that reinforces the knowledge we have regarding the regional importance that the Dead Sea held in the past.
Black Fathers Matter by Larry Elder
Which poses a bigger threat to black communities: Racism? Or the absence of fathers? Drawing on a sea of official data and his own upbringing, talk-show host Larry Elder shows just how important black fathers are in turning boys into responsible and happy men--and how their absence has had a tragic impact on millions of black Americans. Donate today to PragerU! http://l.prageru.com/2ylo1Yt Joining PragerU is free! Sign up now to get all our videos as soon as they're released. http://prageru.com/signup
]OP-ED: Don't Identify Jews with 'White Imperialism' by By: Melanie Phillips
The left's Orwellian race formula links even Mizrahi Jews and Israel with their toxic attack on the West
The experience of being an immigrant group and living as a minority in an often hostile culture is, of course, one that Diaspora Jews know only too well.
There are obviously huge differences, though, between the Jewish and black experience. Yet one of the most important is overlooked.
In Britain and America, as we have seen over the past few weeks, a movement is under way to rewrite American and British history with the aim of changing the culture. The charge is that white society is endemically racist.
This is supposedly demonstrated by the failure of Western society to acknowledge the cultural sins of slavery and colonialism. The failure sufficiently to trash this history and airbrush out of cultural memory all who have associations with it is said to prove that "white privilege" still rules.
Leave aside the fact that such demonization of white society is itself racist. Leave aside, too, the fact that Britain and the United States have long flagellated themselves over colonialism and slavery through their educational systems.
It you listen carefully, you'll hear something pulsating beneath the anger about "white privilege." In the complaint that colonialism isn't taught, there's something much more distressed: the cry that black people can't see themselves in the picture of Western society that's being taught.
Back in the 1980s, it was claimed that black children couldn't be expected to relate to education unless they saw themselves in the stories it told. So instead of teaching them about the unique institutions and events that had made Britain or America what it was, they would be taught about what was said to be their own history under British colonialism and American slavery.
They wouldn't be taught the truth that colonialism and slavery had been universal. They would be taught instead that these were the special sins of white society.
In fact, this was the best way to keep black people marginalized. For to take their place as equals in British or American society, they needed to be taught first and foremost about the culture in which they were living. To succeed in a different culture requires being taught it. If that teaching is censored, such children will always be at a disadvantage.
This is something that Diaspora Jews have always known. Jews who arrived in America and Britain around the turn of the 20th century understood that, if their children were to prosper, they needed to be inducted into those countries' culture.
Many black or ethnic minority people are also ambitious for their children. They harbor no deep-rooted hostility to white people and, particularly among black church-goers, are demonstrably sympathetic towards the Jewish people.
Yet why is such a distressingly high proportion of those communities so angry with white society and so prejudiced against the Jews? Why do they feel a bottomless need for public recognition of their group victimization?
Jews (other than the ultra-Orthodox) have never felt threatened by being taught Western culture. While they are deeply concerned by the failure to stop anti-Semitism, they have never felt wounded to their very soul because their oppression isn't sufficiently recognized in the British or American education curriculum.
After all, if every anti-Semite was excised from western history or literature, there would be precious little Western culture left at all. Diaspora Jews don't need to be validated in that culture because Judaism places such high priority on constantly educating Jews themselves in their identity and purpose in life.
In stark contrast, those most insistent that Western society has to be reframed around the history of black enslavement and colonial oppression perhaps feel most adrift in the world.
This gets translated into an intense resentment at the society whose culture is (or was) defined and confident. Worse still, in the vacuum created by an education system that repeatedly tells them they are victims of rapacious white society, their identity has become constructed around that resentment.
Many factors are fueling this black sense of dislocation. First is the prevalence among African-Americans and Afro-Caribbeans of shattered family backgrounds.
Of course, family breakdown occurs in great measure in white society too. And there are many examples of lone-parent households succeeding against all the odds in raising their children successfully.
But relatively speaking, children with fragmented family backgrounds suffer a range of lasting disadvantages and problems—one of which, especially among boys and young men, is an inchoate rage at the world.
Which is why so many from such backgrounds, black and white, drift into educational failure, drugs and violent crime. Conversely, minorities such as the Jews, Indians or Chinese, are most successful because of their strong, traditional family lives.
The second factor is the absence of religion. Not only do religious rituals and observances provide a crucial structure of support, but no less important is the sense of purpose and meaning they bring to otherwise rootless lives.
Third, those who define themselves as the descendants of slaves do not have a collective history in which they feel they can take pride.
Last, but by no means least, is a particularly baleful phenomenon. In his book The Tyranny of Guilt, Pascal Bruckner pointed out that, while slavery has been practiced across the world, it was the west which abolished it. Yet as he asked, why is it only the West that is blamed for it while Africa and Asia are exonerated from all responsibility?
The answer is white guilt, as Shelby Steele pointed out in his 2006 book of that name.
Black rage, he wrote, seizes its opportunity from the perceived weakness of the white oppressor, even when there is no injustice.
Black rage started rising in America after the great civil-rights victories were won in the '60s. White guilt then made racism into "a valuable currency for black Americans." It gave them a political identity with no real purpose, except the manipulation of white guilt.
The subsequent Black Power movement articulated Marxist dogma, which went like this. Capitalism created power and oppression; white people were capitalists, so white people were powerful oppressors; Jews were behind capitalism, so Jews were oppressors; capitalism was bad because it was white; Jews were white because they were capitalists.
This doctrine was then turned into a toxic cultural poison by the immensely influential Columbia University literature professor Edward Said. He fused American racism and European colonialism, and represented Palestinians as the essential darker-skinned "Orientals" who were its supposed victims. At a stroke, he thus transformed Israel into the every embodiment of white supremacy.
As a result, Israel is viewed as a white-colonialist enterprise by those who subscribe to these ideas. Given that most Israelis are not white but dark-skinned, this is absurd. But then, in today's upside-down world, whiteness is not a pigment but an ideology.
Last week, a workshop at the University of London's School of Oriental and African Studies, called "Jews and whiteness in colonial spaces," set out to associate Zionists, African Jews and eastern Mizrahi Jews with "whiteness," and thus turn them all into oppressors.
Who can be surprised? For "critical race theory," part of post-modern academic orthodoxy holds that science, reason and evidence are a "white" way of knowing. Crazy or what?
So both Israel and Western society are falsely denounced for "white imperialism," even black or brown-skinned Jews are white, and George Orwell is spinning in his grave. (JNS.org)
Melanie Phillips, a British journalist, broadcaster and author, writes a weekly column for JNS. Currently a columnist for "The Times of London," her personal and political memoir, "Guardian Angel," has been published by Bombardier, which also published her first novel, "The Legacy," in 2018. Her work can be found at: www.melaniephillips.com.