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Misguided Focus on Israel Robs Attention from Local Issues

November 8, 2012 – 7:31 am68 Comments

Manny Waks says it’s time to shift the focus back to local shores

By Manny Waks
It is overdue that we examine the role of advocacy for Israel in our community organisations, particularly those that nominally are not designated a specific role to represent Israel’s interests. Of course support for Israel is critical, both at the community and individual level, and never more so than in the face of hostility to Israel throughout the world. This does not, however, preclude a careful assessment of the work undertaken by groups whose principal mission is to represent the domestic interests of the Australian Jewish community.

There are a plethora of dedicated pro-Israel organisations, including the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council, the Zionist Federation of Australia (ZFA), and the Women’s International Zionist Organisation (Australia). This raises the question as to why other organisations, largely established to cater to the community needs of Australian Jews, so often pivot their focus to include issues already capably within the hands of pro-Zionist groups.

It was indeed curious that there was no discernible difference in the recent Rosh Hashanah messages to the Jewish community from the presidents of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ) and the ZFA, respectively, despite their distinctive roles in our community. Both concentrated their comments on Israel, but in the case of the ECAJ, this was at the expense of local issues that are intended to be its primary focus. The centrality of Israel in the workings of the ECAJ and other mainstream “peak bodies”, such as the Jewish Community Council of Victoria and the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies, is misplaced and a waste of critical and limited community resources. Local issues, some of which include aged care, social welfare, education, abuse, alcohol/drugs and social entrepreneurship, deserve the attention of groups whose imprimatur is to support the community needs of Australian Jews.

Another example of this skewed representation of local interests occurred when the B’nai B’rith Anti-Defamation Commission (ADC) decided to invite Israel Defence Forces Brigadier General Gal Hirsch to make the prestigious Gandel Oration, its centerpiece annual fundraiser and publicity event. Previous speakers have included University of Southern California Shoah Foundation Executive Director Stephen Smith, human rights scholar Professor Anne Bayefsky, human rights lawyer Irwin Cotler, Ambassador Martin Indyk, and former prime ministers Bob Hawke and Malcolm Fraser. The ADC’s mission is clear, and though peripherally concerned with the demonisation of Israel as a means to defame Australian Jews, General Hirsch did not appear to be credentialed as an expert on matters that would advance the mission of the ADC, despite the disingenuous title of the evening’s oration, “‘Human Rights, International Law and the IDF”.

As should have been expected, given even a cursory examination of the General’s military record and utterances, he spoke mostly about his experience in the Israeli military as well as pleading with the audience and their families to make aliyah and to join the Israeli military. Clearly this is irrelevant to the ADC’s mission to combat antisemitism and racism.

Like the ECAJ, the ADC does admirable work, and I was once proud to head this organisation. Nevertheless, there are a multitude of effective Jewish organisations addressing issues related to Israel. The ECAJ, the ADC, and all of the other organisations whose primary mission does not relate to Israel should shift their resources and energies towards Australian-related issues. This will be of benefit to the Australian Jewish community, the organisations themselves, and their constituencies.

No doubt, some within these organisations will argue that Australian Jews are staunchly Zionist and so expect a natural focus towards Israel. This is facile, for no one recommends any movement away from the vigorous support of Israel already maintained by pro-Zionist groups. True, fundraising in a difficult economic environment is enhanced by a pro-Israel focus, but apart from the diminishment of community interests, the inappropriate attention to Zionist causes continues to alienate many younger Jews who question the centrality of Israel but nevertheless wish to work for Jewish renewal and continuity in their Australian community. Disaffection with Jewish identity amongst the young has reached a crisis point, and the attitude of the ECAJ (and others) continues to prove counterproductive.

Anyone who attends mainstream Jewish community events should be discouraged at the predominance of older and middle aged participants and office bearers, and the dearth of younger persons in attendance and in representative positions. Time is of the essence here. We cannot continue to alienate younger Jews who want to identify with our community, and at the same time disenfranchise those whose needs should be met by locally focused groups. Perhaps a wider debate on these important issues will produce a meaningful consensus for a way forward.

Manny Waks is a former Vice President of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry, Immediate Past President of the ACT Jewish Community and founding President of the Capital Jewish Forum.

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68 Comments »

  • Frances Yule says:

    Well stated!

  • TheSadducee says:

    Eds – Manny Waks is no longer President of the ACT Jewish Community (might want to correct his details below the article).

    Otherwise, good points raised.

    [Eds: Thanks. We accidentally re-used the author’s old by-line. It’s now been corrected].

  • Judy says:

    Good discussion starter!

    Except for the ageism. Surely GenY are old enough to pull their own socks up?

  • Ari says:

    Manny,

    Do you think the Gen08 results supports your contention that alienation of the young because of Israel focus is at crisis point?

  • frosh says:

    I’m certainly not alienated by support of Israel (far from it), although I probably don’t qualify as youth anymore either (although it’s all relative).

    However, I fully support Manny’s argument that an organization needs a well defined purpose, and then it best stick to that purpose.

    Once organizations stray too far from their purpose, then they lose utility.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    I forgive Wax for his deficient syntax, congratulate him for the lexical originality – see “diminishment” – and decry the dim, irrational argument in favour of multiple self-inflicted shot-gun wounds in what seems the feet of a highly erratic octopus. By now his lack of intellectual direction is so obvious that one wonders not why our Manny has climbed the pile of rickety soap boxes in the first place if not to trumpet his habitual lack of modesty endowed only with excessive absurdities. For being a Jew these days, and a responsible one at that, caring for ALL matters, not just “local” is the very definition of comprehensive Yidishkeit, Zionism and all its complexities being a pivot of conncerns. There is NO mutual exclusiveness of issues, ergo Manny Wax has no case, except for those with fake soap labels on them.
    And all that considering that, of all people, I am the least happy with ECAJ and the dear NSWJBD !!!!!

  • frosh says:

    Otto,

    Do you think an organisation should have a defined purpose and then keep to that defined purpose?

  • Ittay says:

    In defense of the ADC, their first choice for the oration this year was Rabbi Michael Melchior. Given his extensive activism in promoting human rights and fighting discrimination through his founding of the Mosaica Center for Interreligious Cooperation, I think he would have been a far more fitting choice. More importantly, the oration would have probably been far more in line with the aims of the ADC.

    However, given that he pulled out at late notice due to family reasons, General Gal Hirsch was the only available high profile replacement.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Frosh

    a definite yes !
    otherwise why wouldn’t RSPCA become involved airoplane diving or Irish or, why not, Romanian folk dance as part of their specific profile, unless there is something helpful to the abandoned pooches inherent in parachuting syncopating jumping to the tune of wild violins ….

  • frosh says:

    Otto, so in that case, you ought to agree with Manny Waks’ primary argument?

    Ittay, thanks for providing that valauble contextual information.

  • Jonny Schauder says:

    Otto you seem confused. What’s with the pompous personal assault? You correct Manny’s language and then start name calling?

    This article is a very useful and timely reminder to community organisations to focus on their core activities…

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Frosh and Jonny Schuder

    There is a serious short-circuit of comprehension in your replies.

    1. Jewish orgs. of any description MUST include active Zionism in their structures and activities. Wax is absurdly objecting to that element.
    The issue of attracting young sections of the community is NOT being ignored by addresing the indispensible Zionist agenda. These two essential functions are NOT mutually exclusive, something Wax is advocating. If you cannot see that then I am affreid I would have to indulge myself in the same pompous means of addressing you” personally”. It also follows that, if the orgs in question are involved in what may be perceived as “pure” Zionism, it does NOT mean that, conversely, other matters are automatically ignored !! There is no evidence from the opinion piece at hand that Jewish oranisation IGNORE addressing the youth issues. Wax makes gratuitous speculations, baseless assertion, Wax indulges in fallacies similar to say that, for example,if someone is seen sitting at the table having dinner he has completely abandoned swimming or driving his car etc.

    2. Addressing someone “personally” as a result of that someone putting his name under a raft of personal opinions is as natural as calling “Mother” a woman who has given birth to a child.
    He who utters anything is PERSONALLY responsible for the …. said emissions ergo he should cop the ensuing commnents, possible criticism or praise. I am sure that if I would have said that Wax is a genius you would not have a go at me, although that would have been a personal commnet, just as well. You two have a go at me simply because you agree with Wax and I , obviously do NOT.
    Just look at me, I do NOT object to yourse guys having a go at me for what I said. Shouldn’t the same go for our slightly seriously erratic Manny !!!???

  • letters in the age says:

    Ouch Otto!!!

    Convulated grammar but where was the wit in there??

    Nice ideas Manny

  • R B says:

    Well done Manny.

    Australian Jewry spends too much energy and funds on Israel. This has become a “Sacred cow”, questions are not being asked and priorities are not being re-considered due to the changing socio-economic reality in both Israel and Australia.

    Time has come to put things in proportion, and put the local needs ahead of those of Israel, which is now the 8th in the world in the number of millionaires per capita. The year is 2012, not 1952.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    As the proPalestian camp is gaining in audacity – see agressiveness -, it looks like their efforts in attracting aparent Jews to their diabolical cause and, at the same time, detaching the same from the Zionist ideal, is working rather well.
    No idea who RB or “letters in the age” or frosh is, my name is as printed above, but if those gutsy characters had anything to do with Jewishness, according to their current postings, they no longer do.Same goes for their locally printed seemingly unremitting source of inspiration. For, intentionally or not, Manny Wax is pleading for a departure by Jews from the Zionist ideals. As seen in the case of the “discreet” names above, his irresponsible positing is working. Simply shameful !!!

  • frosh says:

    Otto,

    I would worry less about our skills of comprehension, and a little more about your skills of communication, which lack both clarity and persuasiveness. And while you question the grammar of others, take a look at your own comments below and you will find them replete with definitive spelling and grammatical errors.

    The author is not attacking Israel or Zionism. In fact, knowing the author as I do, I can tell you that he is a proud Zionist and is proud of the fact that he has served in the IDF.

    Your wrote that “Jewish orgs. [sic] of any description MUST include active Zionism in their structures and activities.”

    I just took a look at the website for Chevra Hatzolah. see http://hatzolah.org.au/
    To their great credit, they display a very clear mission statement:
    To provide a professional, high level of Emergency Care, to members of the Jewish Community, in a predefined area, within an efficient timeframe.

    Perhaps you think they should change this mission statement to:

    To provide a professional, high level of Emergency Care, and an equally, professional, high level of Emergency Israel Advocacy… ?

    Meanwhile, you should pay a visit to your local Adass shtibl or school and complain about the lack of “active Zionism in their structures and activities.”

    Finally, if you are concerned about my identity, you merely need to click on my name and it will take you to page with my full name and also a byline.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Frosh

    one may not have the time to unravel the by-ways of one’s identity. The term “org.” is a known abbreviation of “organisation”, a very common one so “sic” is totally misplaced.
    The “Zionist credentials” of the author are as relevant as the article he posted which reeks of anti Zionist advocacy as SO clearly, spellink mistackes in cluded, explained by me TWICE.
    Extrapolating in regards to one religious org. (sic) does not demonstrate that the said Jewish entity is devoid of Zionist commitments. A couple of tendentious lines do not make for a cogent argument. Next you will remind me that there are “certain” Jewish structures totally devoted to anti Zionism. My argument dwells quite clearly on the orgs. Wax is attacking and NONE of them is devoid of strong Zionist elements and commitments. So, digressing from my points may make you and you immediate and supportive enturage happy, but when careful attention is paid to the case at hand you seem to have lost direction, plot, case etc.
    I am in constant contact with one of the most active and reliable heads of a very Adass shtibl and their attachemnt to Zionism is beyond any doubt. A serious, devout immersion in the Jewish religious study is bound to create most relable Zionists !!! That is immediately apparent if one finds the right intellectual means of enquiry. Otherwise, cheap shots come so cheaply……….

  • R B says:

    Otto,

    Your aggressiveness, demand to impose Zionist agenda on ANY Jewish organisation no matter what its purpose is, is typical to Communists, not to Zionists. Your attitude of “You are either with us or against us, no other option” – even separating those who do not think like you of their Jewishness! – makes me suspect that you are not so sure in what you so enthusiastically preach for. After all, an ultra zealous Zionist like you should have made Aliyya ages ago…

  • letters in the age says:

    Otto

    I will be polite

    Each progressive spirit is opposed by a thousand mediocre minds appointed to guard the past

    ;)

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    “letters in the age”

    sadly your desire of being polite failed in favour of hollow, slow speed wit. Faking wisdom with short, irrelevant sentences makes for low grade commedy routine. The irrelevance of the past, as you so enthusiastically acclaim, is the vulgar domain of those unaware of it. I can assure you that a suitable education will fix it.

    Consider I posted an avatar expressing spiritual dissapointment !

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    RB

    Your simile between communism and Zionism is rather cute, but infantile, so no cigar !
    I do not impose, in so authoritarian a fashion, Zionism onto any Jewish entity. I simply observed the phenomenon. It appears this ( or rather “these”, being my observation and the fact itself ) escaped you entirely. The “confusion” to which you alude is at once contradicted by the other funny little observation, that I would reveal a very cathegorical state of mind, “the black or white” analogy.
    So, who is so anxious that the entire web world should know how knotted his own excited mind is !!!??? Rather Blotchy : RB, that’s who.

  • TheSadducee says:

    “Jewish orgs. of any description MUST include active Zionism in their structures and activities.”

    – Why?

  • letters in the age says:

    Thanks for your lovely riposte there Otto!!

    Long week with Cup events and all that

    Bit tired

    Cheers

  • Manny Waks says:

    Otto, I’m pleased that I provide you with plenty to do with your over-abundant spare time—you seem to follow me wherever I go! You also seem to be critical of anything I say or write. I take no offence to your views, including your personal descriptions of me. As someone who is a public figure by choice, the community has a right to scrutinise my public statements and actions. One of the great advantages of being involved in Jewish communal leadership has been the development of a very thick skin—I’m grateful for that!

    I don’t feel the need to respond to your criticisms—it seems that you have deliberately taken statements from my article and somehow interpreted them in a way to suit your agenda.

    But please, at least get the spelling of my name right!

  • Dan Lewis says:

    Manny,

    Your comments seem to have been endorsed by Antony Loewenstein.

    Be careful you aren’t misrepresented by these Jews for Genocide.

    A strong Israel is good for Jewish people (and non-Jewish people I might add).

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    M A N N Y

    Your last posting, addressed to me, must be acknowledged as a rare and strange confession of the dermatological nature consistent with stating a few fairly redundant truisms.
    I shall not, therefore, disagree with you that I take your statements and interpret them deliberately and well within the purview of my convictions.
    I want you to be at peace that there is no need to reply to my criticism, this is not the reason or purpose of me engaging in this exercise. The main goal of my attempting at ideas I find unacceptable is that the targets of my criticism find themselves unable to reply to my postings, that my analysis is unassailable. To this extent you gave me the thumbs up for which I am quietly satisfied.
    I do suggest, in a friendly way, that you do heed to my comments and adopt a more sensitive/ sensible approach to critical comments, particularly if coming from parties who follow you “everywhere you go”.
    I could have been really nasty and go for a cheap dart by saying that, in fact, you are not going anywhere with this attitude.

    best regards

    otto

  • Jonny Schauder says:

    Apparently not arguing with nut bags means the nut bag wins… Classic logic.

  • Jonny Schauder says:

    Na… Just a nut bag…

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Jonny Schauder !!!

    Diminutive Jon thinks he’s witty,
    But sounds like “Schade”, which means: pitty.
    Vulgar and ninny, all the same
    As “Schade” is also used as : shame.

  • Elijah says:

    Manny, congratulations!

    Organisations must have a clear, well defined mission statement or they will never achieve what they set out to do. A good example is the JNF.

    Otto, Shtreimels were designed for the cold European climate, not our hot, sunny Australian weather.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    What makes perfect sense, impeccable logic, is the quality of support Manny Waks (!)is enjoying. A colourful coterie dishing out stunning stuff such as the latest addition of the intellectual exploits offered by “Elijah”.
    You reckon these guys have something to do with the notion of Jewish communal involvement and, suddenly, you encounter pearls of wisdom such as JNF being excessively Zionst, because this is the main issue here, provoked by the same MW, Jewish organisations devoting too much attention to Zionist agendas.
    Those attaching themselves to Manny’s incredible deficient positing seem to be doing it as a reflex of baseless negative reaction, an un-articulated objection to entities simply because a certain degree of miserable disposition dominates them.
    No explanation as why Zionism would be inconsistent with the Jewish profile, again, regardless of the “type” of organisation ( the only exception I would grant would be Chevra Khadisha !!).
    Willy nilly, Manny Waks is the hero of “necessary” criticism, a “beacon” of wisdom, “champion” of worthy causes. I must repeat that Manny Waks does NOT articulate at all the reason why Zionism could be DETRIMENTAL to the essence of Jewishness nor does he offer data, examples of HOW Jewish youth is being neglected in favour of what he, once again, regards as a “non core” activity. His accolites support that view and they do that by simply exclaiming sounds of monosylabic shouts, adorned, when their cages rattled by, say, one Otto Waldmann, with vulgar invectives. How revealing !!
    Elajah, child of waves of heated currents, and all other one-liners of non-sense, get it right and straight : Zionism is fundamental to the Jewish condition. It must be inculcated in all those who need be involeved in ANY Jewish activities and also to non-Jews, for Israel functions in all respects on that human support nurtured, forged in the splendid flames of love and passion for Eretz Israel.
    If you sit at the canasta table, play soccer for Maccabi, daven in your shul or at home, entertain family or write on blogs designed to express the uniqueness and worth of being a Jew aware of your complex existence the light of Yerushalaim is always there.
    Considering the weight of real problems Israel is experiencing, keeping our whole aware and supportive of her requirements must be, by far, at the forefront of any responsible Jew.

    Manny Waks is furiously seeking attention and tirelessly appeals to support for what he has determined as his own campaign to regain consideration lost within the legitimate Jewish communal leadership.
    His line of argumentation is massively deficient in both structure and content, poorly expressed and only likely to attract the support of the above misguided bloggers.

    (one-liners beware, I have purposely spent more time and consideration as to please you. I expect you to, now, please me and come up with your brilliant emissions !!)

  • Jonny Schauder says:

    Thanks for the poem. That’s cool.
    Here’s a limerick to return the favour…

    There once was a bloke called otto
    Ranting was clearly his motto

    All the best

  • Jonny Schauder says:

    Ok… Just have to finish it…

    Of mannys profile was jealous
    Just too over zealous
    And now the poor fellows gone blotto

    Otto please take this in fun. I get your point that Israel is part of all Jewish identity. Mandy’s point is simply about priority of resource spend and allocation between these elements of identity in organisations that should put other causes first in order to fulfil their objectives. But I think you get that.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Jonny Schauder

    so pleased to have confirmation that certain people, the ones who disagree with what I “rant” about, still don’t get me…………
    It simply means that I didn’t misfire my “rants” at the wrong targets.

    And, thus, I feel so glad, my sprit flies
    When reading all those “smart” replies
    That, when ranting, I set my sight
    On those who couldn’t get me straight.

    same best

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Jonny

    Waks is not right. He is talking about the place of Zionism as off centre in almost all instances. The follow up went as erratic with some of his supporters in saying that JNF, of all “people” place too much emphasis on Zionism.
    Waks does not offer any rational discussion, nor does he support his stance with tangible data. He is having a go at the “eastblishment” as matter of a choice determined by a very subjective agends. One MUST look at the current exercise from a multifaceted prospective, one that must caryy the individual ambitions and recent tribulations experienced by the author with the said establishment.
    I have been known as one of the most vocal critics of some of the most relevant Jewish orgs. in Aust., ECAJ have in my sights for a long time, as seen on AJN. I allowed a very close friendship with some of the leaders, such as Peter Wrtheim and at times Vic Alhadeff to be affected by my determination not be silent in regards to their shortcomings, as I saw them. I am all for cosntructive, active participation in the affairs of our community and I have done that without any kind of selfaggrandizement, without ever seeking any communal positions, at any level.
    When being constructive we must consider the essential principles above personal ambitions and promote them in a balanced manner, rational, even if criticism at times may require a few shades of abbarsiveness, to which I am quite happy to contribute.
    Pederstrian truisms aside, one can only be so original and creative a spirit and “pen”. This is why I have no reservations in terms of shifting into cynical modes cum sarcastic cum ridiculing “subjects”.
    The main issue is that one must not sacrifice reason for tarnsitory, puerile self satisfcation, but stick to the main road of support for clear and present causes. And relegating Zionism for any other side issues is NOT ON.

    KInd regards

    otto

  • letters in the age says:

    Otto,

    Glad to see you know Vic Alhadeff et al.

    Hope he is well.

    The reason many members of the younger generation have left is because of one simple reason

    The Dunning Kreuger effect

    Ciao!

  • Elijah says:

    Otto, Shtreimel wearing is often related to Anosognosia.

    It’s my fault for not using precise language. I meant that the JNF is a very good example of an organisation that has pursued for over a Hundred years, a simple but well defined mission. It was not a comment on Zionism.

    I think Manny is stating, the 3162 Matzah Ball Charitable Distribution Society (3162MBCDS) for people with a taxable annual income less than 100 billion Zimbabwe dollars and live exclusively in Post Code 3162 should not be involved in distributing Matzah Balls to people in Post Code 3161. Nor should the 3162MBCDS become involved in organic free range Chicken farming for soup production in Israel. Although chicken soup is closely related to matzah ball consumption, 3162MBCDS should not waste resources, but concentrate on perfecting the armour piercing characteristics of their balls.

    My brain hurts!!!
    Quick Otto, pass me your preshaped tin foil liner from your Shtreimel.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Elijah

    I was, at first, prompted to reply ” I don’t know where you are coming from”. Then I realised that DO know where you come from. Sadly the treatement in that place seems inadequate. In addition you are repetitive and puerile. I appreciate mature thoughts, school-yard wit is far too redundant for my taste.

    Just in case me too convoluted – you NOT funny at all !!! BUT I BELIEVE YOU THAT YOUR BRAIN HURTS – whatever residues in there……..

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    letters in the age

    I fully agree and, in fact, I alluded to the syndrome somewhere above.
    Yet those who seem to have abandoned the Board, if true, would have done themselves the greatest disservice. If they were smart enough to detect incompetence, they should also have been curageous and clever enough to voice their displeasure in an effecive way, unless they had in mind forming a necessary alternative body ,which I cannot see………

    ……otherwise one must not burn all the bridges.

  • Daniel Levy says:

    The only person using ‘schoolyard wit’ is you.

    You refer to Manny several time as “Wax”, and you have the gall to level the charge of puerility at others?

    It paints a real picture of the plucky 8 year old child, missing a tooth, standing over his prey chortling as he modifies the child’s name slightly to attempt to inflict pain and humiliation.

    That is the image one conjures when thinking of your display, here.

    You are not mature. You are the one whose black and white and narrow-as-a-piece-of-string worldview thinks in all its naive ‘glory’ that a few organisations supporting Jews in Australia -all- need to remain actively focussed on Israel to keep it strong.

    I have never in my life heard a more absurd notion. For you to think that a community of a few hundred thousand Jews half a world away could have that much effect on a region mired in geopolitical turmoil that affects a billion people, which is being watched like a hawk by the greatest superpower the world has ever known is baffling to the point of sheer stupidity.

    And, in your belligerent ignorance, you then deem it necessary to bully and attack a champion of the oppressed. Manny has more moral courage in his pinky finger than the husk that contains your snivelling, whiny and disgustingly self-absorbed “personality”.

    Congratulations, Otto, for using this opportunity to demonstrate to anyone who is reading it that you are not beyond bullying a rape survivor. A man who is trying to get the attention his cause deserves so that rape victims can be delivered justice.

    I take it back, you aren’t a schoolyard bully. No schoolyard bully could be that sinister.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Daniel Levy

    Brilliant, simply brilliant, a bit short, too succint, missing a few invectives, but hit the nail and, as a consequence, created a hole, not to mention the ensuing noise.
    Yep, mispelling Waks gave the whole argument that “X” factor. That was the core argument. Otherwise the idea of “rape” burdening from now on my conscience is working so solidly that, each time I shall think of your spread…. just imagine what associated images shall pop up !!!!!
    Otherwise, Manny WaKS is worthy of your support.

    And – avoid school yards !!

    PS
    It looks like you have been avoiding schools altogether

  • Reality Check says:

    Otto, all you have is a really great vocabulary, and that’s about it.

  • letters in the age says:

    Thanks Otto

    ;)

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Reality Check

    I suggest you check the reality expressed in that vocabulary to do it and you justice !

  • Reallity Check says:

    And a way with words too, Otto. Your last comment, simply brilliant!

  • Reallity Check says:

    PS And I am dead serious here. Do you have trouble getting that head of yours through standard sized doorways?

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Reality Check

    I suppose, as we don’t realy know who you are, there is no risk in you posting regurgitated banalities, phrases with no substantive content, just off the cuff dribbles. Obviously, whoever you are, cannot intergrate more than simple words without developing a cogent argument.
    I am spending this generous time on you although I am sure that I shall not expect any content from an empty vessel cum vacant identity.

    This also is meant to say: you no make sense or point.
    I cannot be more simpler, elementary, cannot declass meself more lower !
    Ai capito meglio, more better, adesso !

  • Reality Check says:

    Yeah, whatever Mr. Otto.

  • Reallity Check says:

    Just heard Manny Waks on the radio. Just a couple of thing I don’t get. Is Manny a Jewish community leader because he is a Jewish community leader, and if so, what part of the Jewish community is he a leader of? Or is he a self appointed Jewish community leader, leading his crusade against child sex abuse in the Jewish community?

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Reality Check

    now we’re talkin’

    Manny Waks is NOT a community leader, as far as the Jewish commnunity is concerned.

    The so called “crusade” you are mentioning is a highly inflated term.
    The entire composite ” crusade against child sex abuse in the Jewish community” is in itself an abuse of all words making up the composite.

    There has been recently ONE case of allegations of series of child abuse in our community, a certain Mr. Kramer (51) currently being extradited from the USA to Australia to stand charges on that account. Manny Waks has been behaind this case for quite some time.
    We must be careful regarding the amplitude of the phenomenon of child abuse, as the quantum is extremely important !!!
    Other communities have been registering a far greater incidence of this abhorent behaviour.

  • Jonny says:

    It is anti itellectual to twist and exaggerate an author’s comments and emphases just to attack them personally. Manny is nowhere near your rearticulation of his intent. Otto your choice of interpretation reveals your real purpose which is simply to express jealousy of Mannys public popularity or perhaps it suggests something worse. Maybe you have an agenda or something to self protect. Either way your hystercal reaction is perplexing..

    I love being on Daniel Levys side for once.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Jonny

    Funny how your name is part of that well known expression re someone coming late, to which you added the confessed attribute of being also “perplexed”.
    While this story tends to degenerate into torrents of little personal tit-bits unrelated to the subject matter – I wish to remind all and sundry that we should be talking about the place of Zionism in the Australian Jewish organisations !!! – , totally irrational assessments of my personal profile are as absurd and uninformed as they seem ill spirited.
    Both the defence of one Manny Waks and respective attacks against matters totally unrelated to his expressed opinion reveal the clear intent of diverting the issues at hand.
    To mine, Manny Waks contains absolutely NOTHING that could possible make me “jealous”. As I have been criticising him for major flaws in his presentation, as well as the clear intentions of his public expressions, it is completely absurd for anyone to deduct that I would envy one I have been so acutely critical of. To that it must be said that Manny Waks , in actual FACT, does NOT hold ANY public position, office, title or any other acknowledged public position that could attract any kind of competitive zeal. Manny Waks is a private person who, in my view and others’ so expressed, is making serious efforts to gain public recognition within the Australian Jewish community. I DO know what position he used to hold in the ACT, but that is history, gone, it has now the value of a groisse gurnischt. Is that something to be jealous of !!!
    I could go on but, Jonny, check the syntax of your 1st sentence, it is so badly written that I am perplexed that I have devoted the above lines to such badly expressed, careless thoughts.

    Howz about Jonny you read your stuff again, then my comments, leave Daniel Levy out because he IS uot anyway, and come back to me for secconds.

    I got plenty to giveya, trust me

    otto

  • Daniel Levy says:

    I find the rantings of this beleaguered hack amusing. He’s nudging the wrong side of 50, and hung up on so many utterly inconsequential nonsense issues. Oh noes somebody criticised some organisations :(:(:( Better insult rape victims. I swear, if I am anything like this fellow when I’m his age, I will consider my life a complete waste. I would be completely amazed if Otto had any legacy worth leaving.

    In the spirit of his constant attacks on other people’s names, I do find it amusing that his arguments should so closely mirror the “Otto cycle”, which now represents a burdensome weight preventing humanity from advancing to better electrical engine prospects.

    Like the good ole’ four-stroke, your arguments follow the same tired loop, always ending up back at their lowly starting point, having produced comparatively little, and losing an embarrassing amount of waste energy to hot air.

    Interesting that after launching your own foul tirade against Manny and his personal profile, you should suddenly cry wolf and attempt to take the high road, urging people to get back on topic. You made your bed, now lie in it.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Daniel Levy

    What are we going to do with you !?
    First you already made and exit which came, and went, in the shape of a whimper. Who on earth leaves an encounter with a mere “Pathetic” !! We don’t even know who IS pathetic, no name, address, phone number, gurnischt. My first reaction was: “Yes, Daniel you are pathetic, but why make it public !!??”. And, after your last posting you are still there, if not even worse.

    Look, mate, you want to have a go at me follow a few basic tactics:

    – do NOT employ off the rack pedestrian, banal phrases that could apply to anyone, anywhere.
    – be very specific. Go for clearly identifiable incongruities found in my texts. NO throaway everyday market-place expressions which DO NOT clarify, do NOT address specifically the issues at hand. Anyone can come up with the stuff you so galantly misfired. I am not impressed, let alone affected by your lack of originality, not to mention, indeed pathetic, efforts in tackling the SUBSTANCE of my postings.
    For, let’s be clear for the 43rd time :

    I DO NOT CARE ABOUT MR. MANNY WAKS AS A PERSON OUTSIDE THE STUFF HE PUTS OUT PUBLICLY.
    Nowhere in my comments could anyone find statements regarding any of his feature outside his ideological exploits. No comments in regards to his physical features.No such indulgencies of any kind, and we have all seen his photo, in some case not just one but even one as a child. That is well outside my commentary latitudes and longitudes, notwithstanding that every individual must be held accountable PERSONALLY for what he/she says/writes, you and I included.

    Listen, I still believe that you could elevate your style and mode of thinking/expression outside this totally unimpressive stuff you have so far offered us.
    Focus on the issues I debate, cultivate a practice of “inform first, open moth second or even third”. Avoid cheap shots because they invariable misfire.
    Look, I am not at all impressed, but I do hold hope that, one day, almost surely before you turn 66, you shall please us with cogent, well articulated, even original postings.
    Good luck, Daniel, I believe in you !!!

  • Daniel Levy says:

    “Avoid cheap shots because they invariable [sic] misfire.”

    Take your own advice.

    “I am not impressed, let alone affected by your lack of originality, not to mention, indeed pathetic, efforts in tackling the SUBSTANCE of my postings.”

    In fact, I did address your feeble arguments in my first reply to you, drawing attention to the naivete of your position. You ignored it, presumably because you have the intellect of a barnyard animal.

    If you would kindly provide some substance, I would attack it.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Daniel Levy

    Not quite there.

    Typos are not worth “attacking”, it is like passing wind in the wind. Such weakness of temper does not reveal any achievements of the thinking type , as typing is a strictly mechanical exercise. Speaking of which , the rest of your last efforts offer but the excrements of a seriously injured ego, self inflicted, mind you.
    Mere furious vulgarities are accepted, but only because the entire notional garb you are publicly displaying amounts to regurgitated garbage.

    Daniel, YOU ARE NOT MAKING ANY PROGRESS !!!

    Also careful, you are now allowing a whole world to discover your embarrassing inability to handle cogent dialectics.
    One good starting point to a badly necessary improvement is NOT believing that you
    are more intelligent than me !!!

  • Daniel Levy says:

    “One good starting point to a badly necessary improvement is NOT believing that you
    are more intelligent than me !!!”

    I’ll entertain the notion when you give me any good reason to do so.

    For all your wailing about substantive matter, you’re still not moving beyond personal jibes to confronting the arguments I put forward in my first comment addressing you.

    You’ve had ample time. What’s the matter otto, a bit impotent where it matters? You’re just like most bullies – a complete coward when confronted.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Daniel Levy

    I can see how enticing you are trying to make your discreet invitation for me to join you in the lexical piggery you are so happily wallowing in, but , I am affraid ( and, to be honest, happy ) that you shall dwell there in solitude. You deserve it.

    Call me again once you’ve grown up !

  • Elijah says:

    Otto,
    “Reality Check” has erred, your vocabulary is not wealthy.

    Your self loathing is readily apparent from your extreme reaction to Manny’s article and his personal situation. You appear to be angry about something in your past but haven’t managed to come to terms with.

    I think its time you prudently retreated back to the little forest from whence you came.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Elijah

    It is quite obvious that your little confession that you suffer from some ailment affecting your brains, as in the the earlier mentioned “hurt brains”, is still persisting.

    Consistently, your ridiculous incursion into psychological assessments, coupled with your command of English, reveal serious deficiencies; where and how did you get the “self loathing” and, to boot, related to “extreme” reaction and an assumed “anger” !!??

    Put aside your embarrassing vanity and go carefully – I suggest with the aide of a dictionary – through my texts in relation to your “worthy” idol, MW, and you shall discover the miracle of fair comments.

    One more thing, the expression “wealthy vocabulary” is another example of bad English you regaled us with.

  • Daniel Levy says:

    Otto, you ended your last sentence on a preposition. That’s some shockingly poor syntax, mate.

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Daniel Levy

    Mate, you are so right……..!!!

    I’m finished, gone, done with..

    what have I done again !!!Finished “with” another preposition that really finished me for good not to mention the bad sentence. Sentenced to death by syntax.

    such perception !!!

  • Elijah says:

    Otto,
    When you paraphrase, there are no punctuation marks.
    Misuse of quotation mark examples include:

    You write “hurt brains” instead of what I wrote, “My brain hurts!!!”.

    You also write “wealthy vocabulary”, whereas, I wrote “vocabulary is not wealthy”.

    It would be prudent of me to state that I am no master of spelling, punctuation and grammar. However Otto, since you appear to claim superiority in the use of the English language, it would be vigilant of you to ensure, that you double check what you have written.

    Examples plus my corrections include:

    “as in the the earlier mentioned” – two the

    “that DO know” – missing I

    “treatement” – no e between t and m

    “Chevra Khadisha” – no h between K and a

    “non-sense” – no Hyphen

    I note that several other contributors have commented on your poor spelling and grammar. Your reply “Typos are not worth “attacking”, it is like passing wind in the wind.” is indicative of a feeble mind.

    You missing, my use of the words Wealthy and Forest as a play on your name is symptomatic of your inability to “get it right and straight”, being “repetitive and puerile” is simply beyond the comprehension of your Shtreimel cooked brain.

    No doubt, the readers will Mitleid (German for pity, not “pitty” – single t only) the “Schade” (German for shame) you have brought upon yourself.

  • letters in the age says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YhNgTBlldvM

    The Big Band Theory episode comes to mind on this thread…

    You guys are hilarious….

    Start writing on a script now!!

  • letters in the age says:

    Yep there’s a spelling mistake…

    I see it okay!!

    The Big Bang Theory

  • Otto Waldmann says:

    Elijah

    persistent with derisory, diminutive stuff while the core issues escaped you at all times

    Just look at your erratic postings, sad attempts at wit.
    Petty and unworthy of further comment.

    Do you really think that my typos really, really bother me ??!!

    Of course you would !

  • Jonny Schauder says:

    This is hysterical… Sorry I’ve been out so long.
    Otto… Daniel… Lovely.
    Manny Waks and for that matter Ittay Flescher (interviewed on ABC this morning) have been shining examples of community leadership of late. No position, but clear and inspiring visions and approaches. Very humanitarian yet orthodox in approach, and easy to support because their messages… Unlike some others I could name… Are easy to follow and consistent.

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