Posts Tagged 'anti-Semitism'

Lies, lies and more lies

It’s a wonder that anyone tells the truth in politics.  Negative ads, financed by folks who have no interest in the facts, are the soup du jour of our TV screens.  Based on my careful calculations, superpacs alone have contributed about a bazillion dollars per lie to the current Republican primary battle.  Can you even fathom the money that is yet to be spent creating the image that the sky will fall if the black guy gets another four years.  But that should surprise no one.  Lies have been a mainstay in creating fear in the minds of those most vulnerable.  And in finding convenient scapegoats to blame for the liars’ own failures.

I am reasonably conversant with anti-Semitism having been exposed to it on several memorable occasions.  But it never hurts to take a refresher course.  I’m currently reading Phyllis Goldstein’s treatise on the subject  A Convenient Hatred.  Ms. Goldstein chronicles the use of misinformation and lies in subjugating and blaming Jews for many of the world’s catastrophes including  plagues, wars, economic collapse and Lindsay Lohan.  Coursing through her book, you are repeatedly exposed to the willingness of the majority to accept, cheer and rebroadcast blatant falsehoods.

Maybe that’s why most Jews place great importance on the truth.  Why we are taught early on that lying is immoral and unjust.  Why lies stick in our mouths.  And maybe that’s why I was taken aback earlier this week.

My old school chum Gary, a Jew, has tobogganed to the political right…way right.  He does e-blasts that generally chronicle the reasons why the left is to be blamed for all our ills.  I scan his mail with a grain of salt and will occasionally trade notes with Gary that take issue with his observations.  On Wednesday I opened the latest Gary-blast and found the following which he had probably cribbed from some other blast…

 It is time to clean the congressional house and the presidency for the sake  of our children and grandchildren.  We need some honest people in politics who are able to read any bill that jeopardizes the public like this one that you are about to read!!!!

Did you know that if you sell your house after 2012 you will pay a 3.8% sales tax on it?  That’s $3,800 on a $100,000 home,  etc.  When did this happen?  It’s in the health care bill and goes into effect in 2013.

Not one to take this at face value, I read about the tax and found that Gary had been a bit over-zealous.

Dear Gary, I wrote…You really need to read the facts about this.  The tax is on the profits over $500,000 made on the sale of a home and you need an income that exceeds $250,000. Here’s a link.  Oh, and I assume you will publish a retraction.

Dear Fred, he wrote… Doesn’t your property exceed $500,00?  And I just love the fact that no one read the entire bill until it was passed (Thanks Ms. Pelosi).

Dear Gary, I wrote… Don’t be like Ms. Pelosi.  Read the facts.  The tax is on the profit from the sale, not the sale price.  And, for a couple, the first $500,000 of profit is excludable.  So, if I made a million in profit I’d pay about $20,000 in tax.  I should live so long.  And, of equal importance, the tax only falls on those with an income of more than $250,000.  Now will you publish a retraction?

I guess Gary is busy since no retraction has found its way to my mailbox.

Now maybe this doesn’t rise to Holocaust proportions but what really bothers me is that a Jew can ignore his own history and proceed down a path that should be abhorrent to him.  Yes, I can hear some of you say “What’s he so bent out of shape about?  This is 2012. All that stuff is behind us.  Lying is part of the political process.  Everyone does it.”  Really?

Last week we heard the upbeat news about jobs.  Hooray we said.  Progress.  Some of us were pleased.  Some claimed the books were cooked.  Paul Krugman, a Jew writing for that Commie paper the Times, had this to say about how to attack the facts…The answer is to throw a bunch of bogus numbers at the issues, in the hope that something sticks, or at least that the discussion becomes confused.

…and that’s in a best case.


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