Friday, December 16, 2011

Let us All Have a Good Shabbat and a Freilichin Chanukah

I really was not planning on posting before Shabbat, and since the first three Aliyot of Parshat VaYeishev are a nightmare on the lack of common decency that our forebears. the Shvatim, had with each other and against Yosef in particular, I could not see anything good coming out of those days that were associated with those three Aliyot, especially Aliyot 2 and 3 of this weeks parsha. Because events of this week have truly corresponded to the 2nd thesis, that the Aliyot of the parsha are associated with the Wednesday before Shabbat until the Tuesday after that Shabbat. This past Tuesday, Esav went off the cliff as I demonstrated in the previous post. It happened on Tuesday because of one word, Magdi'el that is mentioned in the 7th Aliyah of VaYishlach. And all of our Sages of the Ages (Chazal) are in agreement that Magdi'el is Rome. So the goat called Esav went off the Italian cliff called Vesuvius because the name Magdi'el seems to have tied the fate of Rome with the fourth Aliyah when Esav returns to Se'ir the mountain of the male goat. So the goat is now in midair and is still falling as I write this. Now there have been a flurry of financial stories from Kyle Bass and several other hedge fund gurus that a collapse of the European banking system is imminent while no one in their right mind is giving a date for the collapse of the European banking system in order to actually cause the panic rather than to just report on it. That is responsible, and even if Kyle Bass says that a collapse might be months away, he says it because if he said "days away", he himself would be blamed for initiating full scale panic.

Yet, Tyler Durden takes no prisoners. His penchant for the Truth in matters financial is such a breath of fresh air. And he is hilarious. Here is one of his posts in its entirety:

Whereas previously we had heard extensive horror stories about banks being told to prepare for the end of the world in case the European summit (the latest and greatest one from last Friday which was supposed to find a cure for cancer among other things) failed, and even went so far as to read about preparations for trading in the drachma on a when issued basis, once the summit passed (and it was clear that media posturing would do nothing to fix what has already been a failure and it would be best to remove the threats of "reality" from the public's attention) all such "end of the world" speculation promptly disappeared - after all why remind people that things are now worse than ever. Until today. According to the Australian Finance Review (link - subscription required), banks down under "have been given 1 week by regulators to stress test how they would handle a spike in joblessness, plunge in home prices spurred by EU debt crisis." Aka a European "Meltdown." And since we don't have immediate access to the article, we leave it to Bloomberg First Word to describe for us what the article says:
  • Australian Prudential Regulation Authority envision worst-case scenario of 12% unemployment, 30% drop in house prices, 40% fall in commercial property values, AFR says
  • Banks will assume that write-offs, other mitigation measures are unavailable; later stress tests might allow for such steps, AFR says
  • Australia’s banks have A$87.2b of exposure to Europe, or 2.7% of assets, with A$74.6b of it mostly tied to bank borrowers in France, Germany, Netherlands, AFR says, citing RBA statistics
Why is this notable? Because unlike before, when media reports were really a propaganda ploy to get European politicians to collaborate (what has now proven to be an impossible task), and nothing but a rhetorical device, this time around, the warning is for real. And, more importantly, we have a sense of urgency, courtesy of the 1 week deadline: the question then is is it really that bad, and does Europe truly have a little over a week for global banks to prepare for the inevitable fall out?
Lastly, how long until our own prudent leaders decide it may be time to push the Stress Test scheduled for next year forward, just in case the "unthinkable" does happen, and US banks end up getting stampeded even as the rest of the world is already prepared for a worst case scenario?
We are confident Tim Geithner will get right back to us asap on all of these open items.

Well I must hand it to the Aussies. When they want to prepare, they actually tell their own citizens that perhaps they should do whatever means to prepare too. I wonder if Obuzzard will also give Americans the same time space to prepare in the ways that they should have been preparing for the last several months anyway. Now next week is Chanukah, and in the first Aliyah of MiKeitz which corresponds to the first day of Chanukah in the Wednesday through Tuesday system, Yosef gets his "Get out of Jail Free" card when Paro needs a dream interpreter. That first Aliyah actually took place on Rosh HaShana so many years ago, but it always appears during the week of Chanukah. In the third Aliyah of MiKeitz, Yosef is appointed as the vice-king by Paro and becomes 2nd to Paro and ultimately becomes a lifeline of food to the entire world. So the horrible events of the first three Aliyot of VaYeishev this week, within one week, are transformed into three Aliyot days of triumph for Yosef HaTzaddik. So quickly the world can change in one week. And may the real Mashiach ben Yosef, who may very well at this time, be sitting in an American prison with a Yud Key Vav in his first name as opposed to his last name, get his "Get Out of Jail Free" card during those first three days of Chanukah. May HaShem make it so. Amen.

Urgent update:  It takes a Kyle Bass, the most credible hedge fund manager in the world, based in Dallas to set it all straight for all of us:
The exact day that it pops for good is obviously unknown. But is is imminent.  So please do not let your guard down, and stay just as prepared no matter what laughers and scoffers say.


Blogger Leah said...


12/16/2011 5:51 AM  
Anonymous Fangyu said...

Amen. Happy Chanukah to Rabbi Dov Bar-Leib and everyone:-) Keep up the good works. Every Jew is a light to the world and an embodiment of a portion of the total Divine knowledge. BTW, that is another reason why aliyah to Israel is so important, scattering light get together shines the brightest. We want Mashiah now! May the redemption comes speedily in our days.

12/18/2011 12:36 AM  
Anonymous Some Yid said...

This Chanukkah as the goyim also prepare for their festivals and to seasonally give to their needy we also need to remember the dire straights that the cost of living explosion of the last five years in E"Y has had on the most vulnerable of Jews. How many formerly proud upstanding members of the community now secretly have to decide between power for heat, food, or rent. Until the geula fully blossoms remember your ahavas Yisrael and find a Jew especially the disabled or rejected who are impaired in their earning potential and find a way to respectfully employ or assist them in a non shameful way. We actually want the cavod that comes with a job and title which we can hold up as a defense when others look down on our situation, just remember that we may miss days if sick or disabled, please help us with a job that lets us properly use our hard won skills.
The west teaches us to only give through respected institutions which can provide a good parnasa for those with good families and connections to big donors who are appointed to administer the funds, but it is difficult for the poor without good connections to obtain much more than a weekly box of vegetables in many places including Jerusalem.
Think especially of those not from 'good' families, lonely olim, even lonelier small town gerim, divorced people, families with a sick father or mother(did you know Israeli disability is capped at 2000NIS/$550 for most people, absolute maximum 4000NIS for a household with a 100% disability?), people whose parents have either died or were wiped out by the financial mess and can provide no help, families who have kids with behavior problems who the community often distances itself from, or even more difficult families with criminal past or a member in prison.
Consider respectful help, maybe renting your second apartment at a deep discount, offering new kids clothing as though it were surplus or second hand, an envelope dropped in a mailbox with supermarket vouchers has saved many shabatot, in quiet confidence ask the wife especially what the family needs but don't spread the story.
Please don't take an attitude of superiority, that hurts the most, we have probably thought about your easy fix ideas a thousand times, don't beat us up with them. Poverty is often not the result of irresponsibility. Don't enter our homes when you hear of our troubles as if in a flea market and offer lowball prices on our few valuable family keepsakes or work tools only to leave upset for not accepting your help. Chronic illness makes everyone uncomfortable, be a respectful friend, treat the afflicted as normal humans like we once were, even if we have to sometimes break our dates. Do bichur cholim an inexpensive mitzvah, we like to talk about normal stuff hopefully learn some too but don't push too hard. Our families are affected too, it can be uncomfortable to talk to the wife of the chronically ill who can't afford to participate in social events or is short on even mikveh money, the children receiving scholarships are often disciplined more harshly in school compared to the son of a benefactor. We are sometimes branded ungrateful if we do take help but don't lower ourselves before our benefactor obeying their every bit of possibly bad advice. Do not try to use your experience to condemn the poor or disabled, all too often we all grossly underestimate the help we were given both from Shamym and those around us to reach our level of success. If you are fortunate to be well off remember that you were poday that wealth for a reason and you are fortunate to be able to do many mitzvot. Hashem was disgusted by the korbanot of the yiddin who would not first take care of their brother, He loves more to see us love and uplift each other first before we lay out money for hiddur mitzvot. Time is running very short to gather these precious mitzvot!

12/18/2011 12:19 PM  
Blogger Dov Bar-Leib said...

G-d bless Some Yid's thoughts. Chessed is the best spiritual medicine for our souls and for those whom we help at this time. Do it lishma, and HaShem will bless you lishma.

12/18/2011 12:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

North Korean Leader Kim Jong Il, 69, Has Died, does this forward your timezone concept with NK being on the halachic dateline?

12/19/2011 7:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not the default news, or is it?
Not that they are unpleassant people, and that we want them to suffer do we?

And btw: Sir, dear blogowner, Honnourable Rabbi, etc. etc.

The 2x 3.5 year cycle you've been writing about, that fits with Sefer Daniel doesn't it?
So that would be very plausible indeed. 3.5 years for MBY and the other 3.5 for MBD !!
This Shmitah cycle you also keep writing about?
(how does one spell all of this?)
And how it all relates to coming of Mosiach(s)? That it will only happen in a certain year of the cycle?
But doesn't Rambam write that you have to believe in the coming every day? Wouldn't the S.A. love a risk free year with no change of Mosiach coming?
Surely free will and faith and trust and as such ofcourse Teshuva come into play? into play every year?

12/22/2011 9:18 PM  
Anonymous kenneth Gibbons LLC said...

God Bless!! Some Yid's thoughts. Watching History Channel right now and they have a program on "End of Days". With Korea's recent death of their leader and Iran moving towards Nucs I think maybe moving towards the End of Days. I appreciate the blog. Good Job


12/27/2011 3:29 AM  
Blogger Neshama said...

Oh my gosh, see the lack of civility here. sinat hinam

The leftists have gotten under the skin of everyone!

12/27/2011 12:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yosef holds Binyamin as the Benai Yaakov are sent back to E"Y. What does this mean vs MBY and the Binyami who is needed to wipe Amalek?

12/28/2011 8:47 PM  
Blogger Fofo said...

Dov, what happened? you said you will post the truth on morning of 13th? nothing you said happened, not even close. did you read my reading list regarding your loose imagination?

12/29/2011 12:36 AM  
Blogger Dov Bar-Leib said...

fofo: G-d willing I will post tomorrow. have been busy with the kids over Chanukah and other family issues. In fact I have been swamped with other things of a private nature. Sorry about that.

12/29/2011 12:52 AM  

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