Sunday, March 21, 2010

Funny New Passover videos

Israeli Exoskeleton Suit Enables Paralayzed People To Walk

An Amazing Fact about the Jewish Star

Even if you are not Jewish, this is really amazing. The Jewish Star (of David) is also referred to as a MAGEN DAVID.



Thursday, March 18, 2010

First Plague as reported on Twitter

CNN-Alerts: Egyptian water turns to blood

Jewish-Press: G-d sends first plague onto Egypt

BBC-Alerts: Egyptian officials say there is no problem.

Egypt-Ministry-of-Health: Temporary problem with the water supply

Egypt-Opposition: Do not drink the water

Muhamed-the-Egyptian: What the #%&!?

Jacob-the-Jew: What water problem??

Hamas-Guy: Tastes great, less filling

Pharo-the-Great: Anyone see that Moses dude?

Obama-Man: Give the negotiations a chance

Hillary-Clinton: This directed assault is an insult to the United States and our ally Egypt

EU-Council: We condem this aggressive act of violence

The-Hague: We condem the Israelites for war crimes against the Egyptians.

UN-Spokeman: Securty Resolution 2 - Israelites condemed for inciting the Egyptians

Dubai-Police: We have a video of 26 foreigners tampering with the water supply

Joe's-Spring-Water: Get our Egyptian importer on the line

Sarah Palin: They deserve it! Anyone see my shotgun ?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

What Makes Jews So Successful?

One could argue that because the Jews were dispersed throughout the world, they came in contact with many cultures and were thus able to take the best ideas of each nation and use them to their advantage.

But the African Diaspora spread hundreds of millions 1 of Black Africans all over Asia, the Middle East, Europe and the Western Hemisphere, yet despite their dispersal and contact with many cultures, Black Africans as a group have been dismal failures. For example, only one Black African ever received a Nobel Prize in Economics and not one ever received a Nobel Prize in Physics, Chemistry, or Medicine [see my 13 Black Nobel Prize Laureates] while more 159 Jews have won Nobel Prizes other than Peace or Literature.

A reader may object that Black Africans came from many cultures before they were dispersed and therefor they are not a homogeneous group that can act to help each other.

But the same can be said of Jews from Ethiopia, Spain, Germany, Persia, France, Morocco, China, Japan, and hundreds of other countries and cultures.

Ah, perhaps it is their religion? Black Africans have many religions and are thus not as united as the Jews. But there are billions of Christians in every country in the world and yet their common belief has not made them as successful as Jews.

There are many times more Catholics in Poland than Jews, yet more than half of all Polish Nobel Laureates [see Polish Nobel Prize Laureates]: Jews.

So maybe it's not a common religion but Judaism per se, that makes Jews successful. But that does not explain the remarkable influence and power of Jews in film, plays, music, finance, real estate, banking, fashion, and other enterprises in America where the majority of Jews are secular [see Not All Jews Believe in God].

Well then, perhaps surviving constant persecution and enduring long suffering make the Jew so formidable. Then let us consider the Armenians who have been dispersed all over America, Africa, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East since 1375 [Wiki], and likewise suffered expulsions, discrimination and even endured a genocide at the hands of the Turks.

There is no doubt that Armenians are very successful and have made their mark in finance, science, and many other fields. Kirk Kerkorian, Garry Kasparov, Kevork Hovnanian, William Saroyan, and many others, although their achievements are great and many, they are still dwarfed by those of Jews. It should be noted that Kasparov, arguably history's greatest chess player, had a Jewish father, which is not remarkable when one considers that more than half of all the greatest chess players in the past one hundred years were Jews 2.

The answer is a bit complex: Jews helped each other, trusted each other, were forced into becoming merchants and traders, had a common language, formed communities with mutual aid societies, encouraged their children to pursue education. Indeed even during the most horrific of times for Jews, Christian royalty and high government officials had Jewish doctors for themselves.

When Spain needed to make a deal with Portugal or Portugal with Italy or Italy with Great Britain, those countries turned to Jews. Where most nationalities mistrusted others, Jews from the Mediterranean and the far flung suzerainties of the Ottoman Empire dealt with each other as if they were landsmen.

Forbidden by law from most professions by local rulers, the church and the unions, many Jews were forced into culturally abhorred occupations, such as tax and rent collecting, pawnbroking, and moneylending.

Since Jews had no problems trading with each other, many became merchants, manufacturers, and international bankers. Communication from Spain to Morocco was facilitated by speaking 'Judezmo,' a lingua franca among Jews in Southern Europe and North Africa.

Jewish merchants of Poland, Germany, Eastern Europe, Latvia, Lithuania, portions of Russia and Ukraine spoke to each other in Yiddish.

When I arrived in Israel in 1965, I lived with very distant relatives I had never before met or even heard of. Though I was a complete stranger to them, they gave me a room to sleep in and helped me register at the Hebrew University. Imagine a French Christian cousin 12 times removed coming into town and getting help from very, very distant Italian relative. Not likely.

After a few weeks I met a Persian Jewish young man (completely unrelated to me) who invited me to his home for tea and I stayed for two years.

In 1967 I had an opportunity to study in Paris. A distant-distant-distant cousin helped me find lodging and register for classes.

I can travel anywhere in the world and hook up with a Jewish relative or a friend of a relative and settle down, if it suited me to do so, helped by fellow Jews.

Many immigrants who emulate those habits of helping one another also succeed in America. In New York one can find Koreans helping other Koreans to open up delis, Chinese help other Chinese open up jewelry stores or restaurants, and so on.

What you will rarely see are Blacks helping other Blacks. Once a Black entertainer, businessman, sports hero makes a fortune - poof - they're gone. Nothing comes back to their community - it's every man for himself.

Or woman for herself. What does Oprah do for urban youth? Nothing. Instead she spends her money on non-American Blacks.
But I digress.

Last year I was looking for a person to do some printing for my telecom business. He took me to a Jewish restaurant to discuss business and before my meal was finished he had introduced me to a half-dozen other Jews that could fill other needs of my business.

That's what makes Jews successful. Not being afraid to share a customer, to network, to help a fellow Jew.

Sure a Harvard man will help another Harvard man but the guy has to be in the same social class. Among Jews, a millionaire can be eating in the same booth as a poor man and each can still do business with the other.

It's what made Hollywood Hollywood, it's what made Broadway Broadway.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Arnall Patz, a Doctor Who Prevented Blindness, Is Dead at 89


Dr. Arnall Patz, an ophthalmologist whose research upset medical convention but ended up saving countless babies from blindness, died on Wednesday at his home in Pikesville, Md. He was 89.

The cause was heart disease, said his daughter, Susan.

Dr. Patz, a former director of the Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins University, also did pioneering research, using lasers, that has been credited with preserving the sight of adults with common conditions that cause blindness.

In 2004 President George W. Bush awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian award. Dr. Patz, Mr. Bush said, was “the man who has given to uncounted men, women and children the gift of sight.”

Dr. Patz began his pathbreaking work in the 1950s, when he discovered that the high doses of oxygen widely administered to help premature infants breathe could cause a form of blindness. Known then as retrolental fibroplasia, it is now called retinopathy of prematurity, or R.O.P. The oxygen, he found, led to overgrowth of blood vessels in the eye, damaging the retina irreparably.

At the time, doctors were puzzled about why R.O.P. had quickly become the most common cause of childhood blindness in the United States and other countries, counting among its victims Stevie Wonder.

To prove his theory that oxygen was the cause, Dr. Patz had to overcome the hostility of many doctors and nurses who believed he was harming, not helping, the infants. The National Institutes of Health rejected as unscientific his initial application for a grant to study oxygen’s role.

In the late 1960s, Dr. Patz helped develop one of the first argon lasers. They are now a standard treatment for macular degeneration and for certain eye disorders that occur among people with diabetes and other ailments.

Using an argon laser, eye doctors could focus intense beams of light to spot-weld leaking blood vessels in the retina. The procedure preserves nearly normal vision for many diabetics, said Dr. Morton F. Goldberg, Dr. Patz’s successor as director of the eye institute. It was “a technological revolution,” he said.

Arnall Patz was born on June 14, 1920, in rural Elberton, Ga., the youngest of seven children. His father, an immigrant from Lithuania, was a peddler who insisted on maintaining Jewish customs in Elberton, where his was the only Jewish family.

After earning undergraduate and medical degrees from Emory University in Atlanta, Dr. Patz served in the ambulance corps during World War II, often transporting patients from Camp Lee, Va., to Walter Reed General Hospital in Washington.

During stopovers there he learned of a vacancy in the eye clinic. After obtaining that position, Dr. Patz trained as an eye doctor at Gallinger Municipal Hospital, later known as the District of Columbia General Hospital, which closed in 2001.

While in training, Dr. Patz observed 21 infants who had developed severe R.O.P. after receiving continuous oxygen therapy delivered through a cone made from folded X-ray film. Four of the children showed a narrowing of the blood vessels in the retina that seemed to lead to R.O.P.

Dr. Patz and the pediatrician in charge of the nursery, Dr. Leroy Hoeck, who died last year, suspected that oxygen was toxic in the amounts administered, Dr. Patz wrote in an account in The American Journal of Ophthalmology in 2006. Despite a lack of training in research and grant support, Dr. Patz carried out a clinical trial to test his theory with a loan from his brother, Louis.

The theory was considered radical at the time, and Dr. Patz met strong opposition from colleagues. During the test, two well-intentioned nurses surreptitiously increased the amounts of oxygen the babies were being given, believing they were protecting their welfare. (After being lectured on the matter, the nurses became committed members of the research team, Dr. Goldberg said.)

In the first report on the test, in 1952, the research team found that 7 of 28 infants receiving high doses of oxygen experienced severe R.O.P., compared with none in the group receiving low doses. Although the findings strongly suggested a causal relationship, Dr. Patz sought more proof. So he and Dr. V. Everett Kinsey helped design a trial involving 18 hospitals. It was the first controlled clinical trial in ophthalmology, and it produced convincing data.

Their findings led to widespread restrictions on high-dose oxygen therapy, resulting in an immediate 60 percent reduction in the number of blind children in the United States.

In 1968, Dr. Patz began working with colleagues from the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory to develop one of the early argon laser photocoagulators to treat diabetic retinopathy and other eye conditions. Overgrowth of blood vessels and leakage in the retina can occur in many eye diseases. Dr. Patz recognized the potential of lasers to seal leaks and stop the blood vessels’ growth.

Dr. Patz became a full-time faculty member of the Wilmer Eye Institute in 1970 and its director in 1979. At the age of 78 he went back to John Hopkins to earn a master of liberal arts degree, his wartime service having curtailed his education. In one term paper he explored how Beethoven’s progressive deafness affected his music.

In addition to his daughter, Susan, of Baltimore, Dr. Patz is survived by his wife, the former Ellen Levy; three sons, William, of Seattle, David, of Grand Junction, Colo., and Jonathan, of Madison, Wis.; and eight grandchildren. After his brother, Louis, and his wife died in a plane crash, Dr. Patz raised their children: Samuel, of Boston; Harry, of Acme, Wash.; and Sarah Anne, of St. Louis.

Dr. Patz was a ham radio operator, and before coordinating centers were developed, he made calls late at night to facilitate the transport of corneas as they were flown around the country for transplants.

In 1956, Helen Keller, who became deaf and blind as a toddler and who became an advocate for handicapped people, presented the Albert Lasker Clinical Medical Research Award to Dr. Patz and Dr. Kinsey.

She told Dr. Patz: “Never tell a patient there is nothing more to be done. Rehabilitation is always an option.” He repeated the advice many times in lectures.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Jefferson, the Chosen President?

U.S. President. Author of the Declaration of Independence. Force behind the Louisiana Purchase. And ... Jew? A new genetic study raises the tantalizing possibility that Thomas Jefferson may have had Jewish ancestry.

Researchers at the University of Leicester have found that the Founding Father's Y chromosome is part of a line known as K2; estimated to be about 20,000 years old, the line has been found scattered about Western Europe, notably in Iberia, France and Britain, but it is most prevalent in the Middle East. Since K2's European distribution "lacks clear structure," as Mark Jobling, a coauthor of the study, puts it, scientists aren't able to trace an exact origin. But how might a 20,000-year-old chromosomal line predominantly found in the Middle East end up dispersed across Europe? One of the best explanations is the Jewish Diaspora, in which the Jews spread west through much of Europe.

Without more data, the University of Leicester researchers can't be certain—but that didn't stop the American Jewish and Jeffersonian communities from buzzing about the prospect. "Monotheism, Moses and Monticello? We should be so lucky," wrote David A. Harris, head of the American Jewish Committee, in an e-mail to NEWSWEEK. "I think it's delightful to find through genetic studies more and more that different people are inseparable in their origins," says Peter Ochs, a professor of modern Judaic studies at the University of Virginia, which Jefferson founded. "We also like him. He's a brilliant, complex, imperfect person, like the great Biblical models—brainy, who uses his mind to build things, and yet very human." The Leicester team previously researched Jefferson's genes to determine whether he had fathered children with a slave, Sally Hemings.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Jewish tribe found in Zimbabwe

Members of Lemba tribe - who wear yarmulkes, eat kosher, and practice circumcision - have Jewish DNA

It is easy to distinguish between the Lemba and their Zimbabwean neighbors – the wear yarmulkes, pray in a language rich in Yemeni and Hebrew roots, and draw stars of David on their headstones.

The BBC reported Saturday that British scientists have succeeded in proving that the Lemba are indeed Jewish, as they claim, through DNA testing.

After years of government foot-dragging, hundreds of immigrants expected to arrive from Ethiopia in coming months. 'Mother is crying tears of joy; she's happy to finally be in Israel,' woman says at airport
Full Story
The tribe, numbering around 80,000, resides in central Zimbabwe and northern South Africa. Many have converted to Christianity but still maintain many Jewish customs, such as circumcision, kosher slaughter, and prohibition of pork.

According to the Lemba's tradition, passed on orally throughout its history, their ancestors were seven Jews who left the holy land 2,500 years ago, before the destruction of the second temple. They passed through Yemen and finally settled in Africa.

Many see it as just another lost tribe myth, but DNA tests have confirmed that the Lemba carry the Semitic gene.

Religious singer Fungisai Zvakavapano-Mashavave said few people were aware of the tribe's existence, and that he wanted the world to know about it.

"I'm very proud to realize that we have a rich culture and I'm proud to be a Lemba. We have been a very secretive people, because we believe we are a special people," he told the BBC.

Professor Tudor Parfitt, from the University of London, said he was astonished to discover the many Jewish customs practiced by the tribe.

"This was amazing," he said. "It looks as if the Jewish priesthood continued in the West by people called Cohen, and in same way it was continued by the priestly clan of the Lemba.

"They have a common ancestor who geneticists say lived about 3,000 years ago somewhere in north Arabia, which is the time of Moses and Aaron when the Jewish priesthood started."

Parfitt, a world-renowned expert, spent 20 years researching the Lemba and lived among them for six months. Despite their Jewish practices, many are Christian and even Muslim.

"Christianity is my religion, and Judaism is my culture," says Perez Hamandishe, a local pastor.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Jewish Trivia

Jewish Trivia (you may or may not know - enjoy!)

The Roosevelts were Jewish Dutch, arriving in NYC in 1682

(Originally named Claes Rosenvelt before name change to Nicholas Roosevelt) Sarah Delano, FDR's mother, was descended from Sephardic Jews.

Joseph Stalin was originally named Joseph David Djugashvili (translating into "son of a Jew.") As well, all 3 of the women he married were Jewish.

Dwight Eisenhower's father was a Swedish Jew and was so identified in theWest Point Yearbook of 1915.


1. Lillian Friedman married Cruz Rivera. They named their baby Geraldo Miguel Rivera (Funny, it doesn't sound Jewish.) Since, according to Jewish law, anyone born to a Jewish mother is Jewish, Geraldo Rivera is Jewish. As were, among others: Fiorello Laguardia, Winston Churchill and Cary Grant, as explained below.

2. Fiorello Laguardia's mother's name was Jacobson. His father was not Jewish. Laguardia spoke seven languages -- including Hebrew and Yiddish - fluently.

3. Winston Churchill's mother's name was Jenny Jerome.

4. Cary Grant 's mother, Elsie, was Jewish. His father, Elias Leach, was not. Grant's original name was Archibald Alexander Leach. (Robin Leach is his first cousin).

5. Peter Sellers' mother, Margaret Marks, was Jewish. His father, Bill Sellers, was Protestant. Peter's real name is Richard Henry Sellers.

6. David Bowie's mother is Jewish, his father is not. One of Bowie's album covers discusses his Jewish ancestry. His real name: David Stenton Haywood Jones.

7. Robert DeNiro's mother is Jewish; his father is not.

8. Shari Belafonte's mother is Jewish. Her father, Harry, has a Jewish grandfather.

9. Olivia Newton John's Jewish grandfather was a Nobel Prize winning physicist.

10. Harrison Ford's mother is Russian Jewish, his father is Irish Catholic.


Fact: The first theater to be used solely for the showing of motion pictures was built by a Jew (Adolf Zukor).

Fact: The first full-length sound picture, The Jazz Singer was produced by the Jewish Samuel L. Goldwyn & Louis B. Mayer (MGM).

Fact: A Jew (Dr. Abraham Waksman) coined the term antibiotics.

Fact: A Polish Jew (Casimir Funk) who pioneered a new field of medical research gave us a word now common in our language -- vitamins.

Fact: The first successful operation for appendicitis was performed by a Jewish surgeon (Dr. Simon Baruch).

Fact: The doctor (Dr.. Abraham Jacobi) hailed as America 's father of pediatrics was a Jew.

Fact: Until a Jewish doctor (Dr.. Siccary) showed differently, Americans believed the tomato was poisonous.

Fact: Jewish Levi "Levi's" Strauss (inventor of jeans) is the largest clothing retailer in the world.

Fact: In 1909, four Jews were among the 60 multi-cultural signers of the call to the National Action, which resulted in the creation of the NAACP.

Fact: A Jew (Emile Berliner) is the man who developed the modern day phonograph. While Thomas Edison was working out a type of phonograph that used a cylinder as a record, Berliner invented a machine that would play a disc. The machine he patented was called the gramophone, and the famous RCA trademark is a picture of a dog listening to "his master's voice" on Berliner's device. The gramophone was superior to Edison 's machine. In short, Emile Berliner made possible the modern record industry. His company was eventually absorbed by the Victor Talking Machine Company, now known as RCA.

Fact: Jewish Louis B. Mayer (MGM) created the idea for the Oscar.

Fact: European Jews are the founding fathers of all the HollywoodStudios.

Fact: Jews comprise a mere 1/4 of 1% (13 million) of the population (6 billion).

Fact: 99% of the world is non Jewish.

Fact: Three of greatest & most influential thinkers dominating the 20th century were Jewish - Einstein, Freud, and Marx.

Fact: The most popular selling Christmas song ("White Christmas") was written by a Jew. (Irving Berlin)

Fact: Of the 660 Nobel prizes from 1901 - 1990, 160 have been won by Jews. In the end, Jews win more Nobel prizes than any other ethnicity. They win 40x more than should be expected of them, based upon their small population numbers.

Fact: A Jew (Dr. Jonas Salk) is the creator of the first Polio Vaccine.

Fact: Jews (Hayam Solomon & Isaac Moses) are responsible for creating thefirst modern banking institutions.

Fact: Jews also created the first department stores of the 19th century: The Altmans, Gimbels, Kaufmanns, Lazaruses, Magnins, Mays, Strausses became leaders of major department stores. Julius Rosenwald revolutionized the way Americans purchased goods by improving Sears Roebuck's mail order merchandising. Hart, Schaffner, Marx, Kuppenheimer and Levi Strauss became household names in men's clothing. Let's not forget EJ Korvets - Eight Jewish Korean (war) Veterans.

Fact: Jewish Marc Chagall (born Segal, Russia is one of the great 20th century painters.

Fact: English Jewish financiers such as Isaac Goldsmid, Nathan Rothschild, David Salomons, and Moses Montefiore, whose fortunes helped England become an empire.

Fact: In 1918, Detroit, a Jew (Max Goldberg) opened the "first" commercial parking lot.

Fact: In 1910, a Jew (Louis Blaustein) and his son opened the "first" gas station, eventually founding AMOCO OIL, one of the richest oil families in the world.

Fact: A Jew (Dr. Albert Sabin) developed the first "oral polio vaccine."

Fact: A Jew (Steven Spielberg) is the most successful filmmaker since the advent of film.

Fact: A Jewish poet's (Emma Lazarus) famous poem, "give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses," appears as the inscription on the Statue Of Liberty.

Fact: Jewish Harry Houdini (Weiss) is the father of Magic/Illusion.

Fact: Dr. Sigmund Freud (Jew) is the father of psychiatry.

Fact: Jewish Abraham is the father of the world's 3 major religions: Judaism, Christianity & Islam (ancestors of the Hebrew & Arabic peoples). Jesus (formerly known as "sweet Jewish Jesus") is still worshipped by billions.

Fact: Jews are the oldest of any people on earth still around with their national identity and cultural heritage intact.

Fact: George & Ira Gershwin & Irving Berlin (Jews) are three of the most prolific composers of the 20th century.

Fact: Isadore & Nathan Straus (Jews) - "Abraham & Straus," eventually became sole owners of Macy's (world's largest department store) in 1896.

Fact: Dr. Paul "magic bullet" Ehrlich (Jew) - physician, Nobel Prize in 1908 for curing syphilis.

Fact: Armand Hammer (Jew) - "Arm & Hammer," physician & businessman who originated the largest trade between U. S. and Russia.

Fact: Louis Santanel (Jew) was the financier who provided the funds for Columbus' voyage to America.

Fact: Sherry Lansing (Jew) of Paramount Pictures, became the first woman president of a major Hollywood studio.

Fact: Flo Zigfield (Jew) of "Zigfield Follies," is the creator of American burlesque.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Louis Armstrong’s First Influence: Jewish Peddlers

How did Louis Armstrong surmount pervasive racism to become the greatest jazz musician of the 20th century? Critic Terry Teachout, author of an upcoming biography of Satchmo, writes in the new issue of Commentary that one of the the musical prodigy’s first inspirations was a Jewish peddler family he worked for as a boy in New Orleans. In a recollection about his relationship with the Karnofskys, “Louis Armstrong + the Jewish Family,” Satchmo told how at 7 years old, he recognized “the ungodly treatment that the White Folks were handling the poor Jewish family that I worked for. They were always warm and kind to me, which was very noticeable to me, he fondly recalled, just a kid who could use a little word of kindness.”

The experience was so transformative that Armstrong became a lifelong philo-Semite who wore a Star of David around his neck, given to him by his Jewish manager. But Armstrong’s relationship with the Karnovksys extended beyond personal affection. Teachout writes that Armstrong greatly admired how Jews overcame prejudice by banding together, seeking to better their lot through work. He was dismayed, by contrast, Teachout argues, with black reactions to racism, writing in his memoirs that “the Negroes always wanted pity, [doing] that in place of going to work.” Armstrong developed his open-mindedness and “gospel of self-help,” Teachout says, from the Jews.