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Re: Re: Interesting Articles... לא עבדו ישראל עבודה זרה אלא להתיר להם עריות
I think that if you think about it deeply, the belief system of society at large, i.e. moral relativism etc. is heavily influenced by a lifestyle that is incompatible with religious belief and observance and absolute morality , whether it is sexuality, hedonism, rampant consumerism, it is inconvenient to acknowledge a reality that imposes absolute morals and limits. If one looks at the philosophy being espoused at the highest levels of the most prestigious universities it seems to be influenced by the above rather than by deep soul searching and true introspection. The belief system them filters down to the masses and is accepted as gospel. This poor couple obviously lacked a true internalized belief and value system so they stood no chance when exposed to the morass of modern society. I think that is the lesson here- if your belief system is just a product of the people around you and is never internalized then it will evaporate as soon as the people around you change. We have got to internalize and educate our children to internalize who we are and what we believe in, not just expect our children to imitate those around them,otherwise it is not a true belief system at all; merely a transient product of a (temporary) set of circumstances....

March 14, 2017, 10:43:16 PM
Re: Pesach Program in Greece Cancelled Just Now!
When in SIN I asked the shliach if he eats at CB&TL and skipped it when he said he would not.

Your background in yeshiva and DD leads you to ask questions and not make assumptions. Unfortunately most people out there have never thought to even ask.

April 20, 2017, 03:36:26 PM
Re: Pesach Program in Greece Cancelled Just Now!
+1, less time making food and setting up=More quality time with kids and more quality time with your spouse when the kids are in camp.

People aren't really speaking the same language here. Someone who makes pesach at home with each kid contributing hand made arts and crafts and divrei torah to the table, helping to bake the pesach dishes, portion out the matzah and Maror, taking turns serving & bringing washing water for zeidy etc., setting up props for the makos and acting them out, marching around the house to bitzeis yisroel, spending most of yom tov (and chol hamoed if you focus on the right venues) focused on the kids without too many distractions etc. there is no way they can appreciate the hotel scene. I've had guests come to my home who've been to some pretty decent pesach programs with their parents when they were growing up and they wistfully remark that they never knew what they were missing by not having experienced pesach at home.

On the other hand, those who go to the programs can't fathom how one can enjoy yom tov if they would have to non stop cook clean up and serve and be stuck in the house with nothing exciting for the kids to really do and hours of work with no down time for the parents for themselves.

Then again there are families who stay home and have a stressful time of it and really would do better in a hotel environment.

Bottom line is there is nothing like an at home pesach experience when it is done right, but not everyone is able to pull it off in the right atmosphere and a program is actually not a bad option for them.....

Lastly there are the programs where to goal is non stop hedonism, gorging on culinary dishes and dubious entertainment options for eight days straight while the kids are whisked out of sight so mom and dad can give their undevided attention to their pleasure trip while acknowledging that it happens to be pesach with a token Seder and a lecture or two where they are passive participants. I have nothing but pity( was going to say contempt but really pity is much more appropriate)for these folks because their choice of venue is just a symptom of the fact that they have no idea of the significance of the unbelievable holiday they are turning their backs on, a lifestyle where success is measured in terms of things and status, rather than relationships and personal growth, or both.

April 21, 2017, 02:34:54 AM
Rental market implosion in Lakewood- implications There are currently hundreds of rental apartments looking for tenants in Lakewood. Basement rental apartments have been particularly hard hit. There are dozens of units that have been vacant for more than six months, and some that haven't had a tenant in close to a year. Some homeowners have given up and have stopped advertising their vacant units. Consequently, rental prices have crashed to levels not seen since the 1990's. Three bedroom apartments with central air, high end kitchens etc. can be had for under $700 a month in some developements. The crash is filtering down to townhouses as well, where prices have dropped substantially.

For several years the demand for rentals outpaced supply, and rental prices rose to the point where the rental of a townhouse and basement apartment would fully cover the mortgage and taxes plus a hefty profit. Many homes were built with two rental apartments and investors bought homes by the dozen to turn into rentals. Low interest rates help fuel the building boom.

The supply of rentals began to outpace demand, yet hundreds of homes were in the approval/ construction phase and were completed adding to the oversupplied market. At this point, despite the massive oversupply of rental units, there are still hundreds of additional units being built including large scale apartment buildings, and even more in the pipeline in various stages of the approval process. It isn't always feasible to pull the plug on a project that is underway, even though the fundamentals have changed. Eventually the market will balance itself out as the natural population growth helps absorb the excess supply, but judging by the units in the pipeline, things are likely to get much worse before they get better..

What are the implications of the rental implosion?
The most obvious will be the impact on the home construction/ real estate market. With the rental income potential drastically lower and the financial incentive in place to rent there will obviously be an impact on demand and consequently prices. The Toms River and Jackson markets stand to gain in the short term since most homes there do not have a rental basement making their lower price point more attractive than a higher priced home in Lakewood with a rental.

Will there be even more young couples moving to Lakewood to take advantage of rental prices that are a fraction of what they will find in almost any other market?

Will it be easier for parent to promise support for young couples since they will be spending thousands less on rent each year?

What are some of the other potential implications? Thoughts?

May 01, 2017, 07:41:30 PM
Walmart pick up experience Is it just the Howell Walmart or are they all like this? Two separate pick ups two horrible experiences. they tell you to sign in through the app for pick up before you go to the store but it makes no difference.  There is one person manning the photo and online pick ups. The first time I went in for pick up it took him over 20 minutes to locate my item. Today was close to 40 minutes for two items. If Walmart wants to leverage their stores to compete with Amazon they have a long way to go.
May 15, 2017, 03:16:22 PM
Re: FBI Raids Orthodox Homes and Businesses in Monsey and KJ
Less section 8/food stamps/medicaid to subsidize it?

Much more to do with brand of orthodoxy and psak regarding BC

June 28, 2017, 03:33:39 PM
Re: Please (Make and) Post your Kiddush Hashem-Honesty Story  A few years back I found a cell phone lying on the curb on a block right near BMG. I turned it on and it was obvious that it was not from a local resident. By searching through the contacts I was able to call the owner who turned out to be the wife of a pastor in Howell, a therapist who had been treating a kid near BMG. She knew she had dropped the phone in that vicinity of the kids house, and she and her husband were shocked when I drove over to drop off the phone by her door. She said if she had lost the phone elsewhere there's no way anyone would have gone through the effort that a guy from Lakewood did to get it back to her...
July 06, 2017, 07:05:52 PM
Re: Please (Make and) Post your Kiddush Hashem-Honesty Story Quote from: YOSEF on Today at 10:06:27 PM
"I don't know people here. And I'm not paskening any shailas.

I will say that I always was under the impression that the ikur chillul/kiddush Hashem is how yidden will see it, not goyim.

I also will say that returning aveidas akum is also not a simple matter from a halachic standpoint, and may be assur.

As such, someone sharing a story that he was machzir aveidas akum, and thinks he made a kiddush HaShem, may in fact be making a chillul HaShem with said story.

Either way, just to remind people, what we "feel" and what halacha requires of us, may be two extremely different things, and we should be careful to keep the goal in mind."

Your assumptions is incorrect. For backgrounds sake I have gone through a fair amount of choshen mishpat and if you will take a look at how the story unfolded it was clear to me that there was a chiyuv hashava. See sm"a C.M. 266:3 and biur hagolah #4.

Besides, everyone knows that the biur hagolah #3 says that we should return all lost objects to Jews as well as non-Jews. Vhamevin...

July 06, 2017, 11:47:49 PM
Where we would be without hilchos yichud and halachic boundaries

“One female congresswoman told CNN that she has experienced sexual harassment from her male colleagues on multiple occasions over the years, but she declined to speak on the record or detail those interactions.
"Half are harassers," she said of her male counterparts in Congress, before quickly adding that that was an over-estimate”

“In conversations with CNN, multiple women pointed to the elevators on Capitol Hill as a place where staff and members prey on women and say they have been advised to avoid riding alone with men if possible. One woman said years after leaving her job in Congress, she still feels anxious about being alone in elevators with men.”

“House and Senate Are ‘Among the Worst’ for Harassment, Representative Says”

What is really astounding is that these are the leaders of our country. When will people realize that without boundaries you are going to have problems. People deride these halachos and call them archaic when it’s clear that chazal understood human nature- that men were not created with a nature to just “control themselves”. That there need to be gedarim in place, not so that everything is then perfect, but at least to give men a fighting chance to do the right thing.

The anecdote in the CNN article about the senator shaking hands suggestively would give me pause even if I subscribed to the hetter to shake hands with the opposite gender.

I’m sure we will now see lots of harassment training and education. Apparently men just need to be educated and that will solve the problem. Until the next wave of stories come out.

November 14, 2017, 09:26:23 AM
Re: Prison Initially I vacillated between the feeling that white collar crime didn’t deserve harsh sentencing, and the thought that perhaps if I had lost my life savings and my life had been changed forever as a victim, I would feel differently. The more I read, the more I am convinced that no one deserves to be treated in such a cruel, inhuman way, with such disregard of basic human dignity. It is little wonder that the rate of recidivism is so high when the inmates are conditioned to a constant existence in survival mode. I would guess that most of those who go through the system are not literate or articulate enough to describe their experience. If there were greater awareness there would doubtless be more advocacy in the frum world for our brethren who are suffering, as well as political pressure on the powers that be to change the system. You seem to be a talented, compelling, and descriptive  writer. If you were able to convey your experience beyond this forum (book form?), it would probably have an impact.

It is admirable that you worked have worked so hard and continue to work hard to turn your life around to such a degree. I think you deserve a lot of credit for what you have managed to do. Hopefully your story can inspire many others who still have a long road ahead of them.

December 05, 2017, 11:04:25 AM