When the Israel Bonds appeal was made in many synagogues this year, congregants heard something that would have been unnecessary a generation ago: a strong reminder of the ties that bind American Jews to Israel.
Given a choice between ties to Israel and commitments to leftist politics, American Jews will choose their politics.
The explanation for the divergence is typical of the hubris of leftist Jews. They see themselves and President Obama as the embodiment of Democratic and Jewish ideals, while Israeli Jews, especially the Orthodox and Russian immigrants, have moved decidedly to the right and spurned both Jewish and Democratic values.
In the boardrooms of Jewish organizations, discussion of “divergence,” as it is being called, takes place with the consummate acceptance of this explanation.
I will not dispute the numbers, but as any undergraduate with an exposure to the logic of inference will note, there is no concatenation between the data and the explanation. What exists is a bunch of brain-atrophied liberals sitting around a table indulging smug notions of their political self-esteem.
The strange thing about leftist Jews, who are generally secular, talking about Jewish values is those values are always aligned with Democratic policy positions.
Perhaps in their version of Exodus, Franklin Roosevelt led the Israelites out of Egypt, climbed atop Mt. Sinai, and returned with two tablets, on which were etched the New Deal.
The policy implications for divergence is that the Israelis had better return to the same Jewish values as leftist American Jews, or there will be no affinity between the two communities and no support for Israel.
The hubris of this is seen in just what Jewish values the Obama administration represents.
I never thought that the intrusion of government into every private sphere was somehow a Jewish value. Tzdaka (charity) isn’t socialism. If it were, the Orthodox Jews, who appear to know something about Jewish values, wouldn’t have voted disproportionately Republican.
Centralization has never been a democratic value. If it were, Stalin, not Jefferson, would be the paragon of democracy.