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Yiddish Curses for GOP Jews
Tablet ^ | August 30, 2012 | Rachel Shukert

Posted on 09/05/2012 3:49:29 PM PDT by nickcarraway

That hot new website making fun of Jewish Republicans? My husband and I made it—and you’re welcome.

You know how it is.

You’re standing in the hallway outside the bathroom watching your husband shave, your always-simmering wrath toward the state of American politics in general and the Republican Party in particular brought to a rolling boil by several cups of coffee drunk at injudicious speed, and you’re both inveighing against certain distant-ish relatives whose ideological leanings are a constant source of ire, wondering aloud what terrible misfortune might need to befall them to bring them around, or at least lay their hypocrisy bare. That they should suffer a catastrophic illness that their insurance refuses to cover, leaving them nothing to be so bent out of shape about re: the estate tax? That they should be so hot for Israel to bomb Iran that their son drops out of medical school to join the IDF? That their son should be elected president and they should have no idea what the hell they did with his birth certificate? And then a light bulb goes on.

Consider this a coming-out of sorts: My husband, the long-suffering Ben, and I are the force behind Yiddish Curses for Republican Jews, a mom-and-pop operated website that in less than a week has generated more than 4.5 million page views throughout the world, including four people in Iran, all of whom I would very much like to treat to a cup of coffee.

But while it’s certainly exciting watching the numbers tick up from the little corner in our kitchen that is our designated command center/smoking area, kind of like one of those spinning-newspaper montages from old movies that end with someone being really, really famous—and believe me, I can only wish that every child from a left-leaning Jewish family should get to hear at least once the sound of her father’s voice when he calls to tell her that something she wrote was linked to by Paul Krugman—what’s been most fascinating about it to me is to see how perfectly the Yiddish language lent itself to the emotions and ideas undergirding this project. With a cadence alternately baroque and colloquial, Yiddish—or rather, our Anglicized approximation of it—seems uniquely calibrated to lay bare any hypocrisy, pick the bones of self-righteousness, puncture the balloons of pompousness, and many other such metaphors. If, as W.C. Fields once had it, wars should be fought in a giant stadium by world leaders armed with socks filled with horse manure, perhaps all political discourse should take the form of Yiddish-style curses.

Let’s look at what makes a Yiddish curse so special, shall we? As Michael Wex, the lauded author of Born To Kvetch (and who, I would like to point out, had nothing to do with any of this, he should live and be well) has written, a Yiddish curse “isn’t a matter of yelling out bad words; the trick is to put them together in the most damaging possible way.” Unlike Irish or Italian curses, Yiddish curses rarely wish the target irreparable bodily harm. There have always been plenty of other people more than willing to give us that—and besides, as every Jew knows, there are things worse than death. Like having every tooth in your head fall out except one, to give you a toothache. Or going to the toilet every three minutes, or every three days. As Aunt Ceil said upon witnessing Uncle Abe’s gasping indigestion upon eating pork chops in the Woody Allen film Radio Days: “A heart attack? A heart attack is too good for him! He deserves an enema!”

The greatest Yiddish curses, however, are the sort with some kind of clever twist of the knife (always a dull one). These start off sounding like a blessing, wishing on the disdained something that anybody would be thrilled to have—a vast fortune, a superannuated life—and then, with little warning, wish for it all to turn to dust. Take for instance, the classic insult I consider to be the apex of this genre, and indeed my most dearly beloved Yiddish curse since I first heard it growled over a canasta table at a family reunion as a very young child: “You should have a large store, and whatever people ask for, you shouldn’t have. And what you do have, it shouldn’t be requested.”

I ask you, dear reader: Is there a better, meaner, more existentially maddening, more perfectly, essentially Jewish curse than that? It practically forces you to imagine the beleaguered shopkeeper behind the counter, tearing at his beard, his inability to satisfy a constant stream of increasingly furious customers forcing him to watch everything he has dreamed of and slaved over and used every aspect of his being to build crumble around him—making him, of course, a sitting duck for the kind of corporate raiders, Brylcreemed with sociopathy, that Mitt Romney and his acolytes would have us worship.

Which, of course, brings us to the Republicans, and their Jewish supporters who I have to believe somewhere deep in their souls really do know better. The GOP platform unveiled to the party faithful this week is so draconian in its policies toward the sick and underprivileged; so regressive in its attitudes toward women, gays, and hard science; so shamelessly tilted in favor of the supremely wealthy and disdainful of everyone else, that the greatest curse you can offer anyone is to hope it all comes true, leaving them to suffer the consequences. Live to 120 on your privatized Medicare vouchers. Make your fortune and lose everything when your chronic illness hits its lifetime insurance cap. Let the maniacs outlaw the morning-after pill the day before your daughter gets home from the NFTY convention, and see if your tax cut makes it all worth it.

Sure, there’s the reality that you’ll take all the rest of us down with you, but the truly embittered curser knows it’s all worth it just to see you suffer. What could be more of a blessing than that?


TOPICS: Politics; Religion
KEYWORDS: benabramowitz; fauxjews; jewish; obamafundraisers; rachelshukert; republican; yiddish
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1 posted on 09/05/2012 3:49:31 PM PDT by nickcarraway
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To: nickcarraway
Q: What do you call a male Jew who votes for Obama?

A: Schmuck, putz

2 posted on 09/05/2012 3:51:54 PM PDT by ken5050 ("One useless man is a shame, two are a law firm, three are a Congress".....John Adams)
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To: nickcarraway

It wasn’t the pubs who booed calling Jerusalem the capital of Israel.


3 posted on 09/05/2012 3:52:26 PM PDT by Mrs.Z
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To: nickcarraway

This is satire, right?


4 posted on 09/05/2012 3:55:40 PM PDT by Excellence (9/11 was an act of faith.)
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To: Excellence

Unfortunately, I don’t think it is :(


5 posted on 09/05/2012 4:00:04 PM PDT by Past Your Eyes (You knew the job was dangerous when you took it.)
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To: nickcarraway
...wars should be fought in a giant stadium by world leaders armed with socks filled with horse manure,...

Hey, I'd pay to see that.

6 posted on 09/05/2012 4:01:04 PM PDT by HKMk23 (GOPe 2012: MITT HAPPENS)
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To: nickcarraway
Not all people who claim to be Jews are actually Jews. When the Romans conquered the middle east, they destroyed Edom. The Surviving Edomites merged with occupied Israel and when Rome destroyed the temple, they dispersed with the Jews, as Jews.

So in their family memory they are Jewish descendants, But in their hearts, they are still Edomites, and hate Judah with an incalculable hatred.

This is why I believe the scripture for the last days saying (Rev 3:9)"Behold, I will make those of the synagogue of Satan who say that they are Jews and are not, but lie--behold, I will make them come and bow down before your feet, and learn that I have loved you." is there. ".

7 posted on 09/05/2012 4:01:42 PM PDT by American in Israel (A wise man's heart directs him to the right, but the foolish mans heart directs him toward the left.)
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To: Excellence
This is satire, right?

In reading the comments at the web site, it appears this is real.

8 posted on 09/05/2012 4:03:00 PM PDT by luvbach1 (Stop the destruction in 2012 or continue the decline)
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To: nickcarraway; justiceseeker93

The fact that there is a Jewish Republican movement pisses them off so much, they have to make a website about it.

Piss off a Dem, show you believe in G-d, and join/support the Republican Jewish Coalition!

www.rjchq.org


9 posted on 09/05/2012 4:07:03 PM PDT by sf4dubya (I rebelled against my parents by becoming a conservative. REJECT THEN STOP SOCIALISM THIS NOV!)
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To: Past Your Eyes

Trial lawyers getting their kids to write pro-0 articles.


10 posted on 09/05/2012 4:07:49 PM PDT by txhurl
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To: luvbach1
Here is the site they put together: Ugly stuff!
11 posted on 09/05/2012 4:08:17 PM PDT by mlizzy (And if we accept that a mother can kill even her own child, how can we tell others not to kill? --MT)
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To: nickcarraway
you’re ...wondering aloud what terrible misfortune might need to befall them to bring them around, or at least lay their hypocrisy bare. That they should suffer a catastrophic illness...

... Unlike Irish or Italian curses, Yiddish curses rarely wish the target irreparable bodily harm....

and...

I can only wish that every child from a left-leaning Jewish family should get to hear at least once the sound of her father’s voice

Let the maniacs outlaw the morning-after pill the day before your daughter gets home from the NFTY convention

I can't help but notice that amid all the feigned concern for the unfortunate that these liberals put out (which extends only to aiding the suffering with other people's money and not aiding them with their own) ... that these liberals have no concern whatsoever for the people from whom all the largesse is to be stolen or about whether they people from whom the liberals wish to steal might need their own earnings to attend to their own suffering, the suffering of their own loved ones, and the needs of people whom they would otherwise selfless help if liberals didn't steal it and run it through the government waste-for-votes machine first.

So much hypocrisy, so little time.

12 posted on 09/05/2012 4:09:11 PM PDT by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge)
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To: nickcarraway

Well, how did God, and the Jewish people, feel about their neighbors who were sacrificing babies? How does God feel about abortion? How does God feel about Democrats because of their support for abortion?


13 posted on 09/05/2012 4:12:29 PM PDT by blueunicorn6 ("A crack shot and a good dancer")
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To: nickcarraway
Forward reading socialists who have never cracked open the Torah.
14 posted on 09/05/2012 4:14:52 PM PDT by rmlew ("Mosques are our barracks, minarets our bayonets, domes our helmets, the believers our soldiers.")
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To: American in Israel

Actually, it was the Israelites under the Hasmoneas who did this. The King and High Priest Yochanan ben Shimon (John Hyracnius) crushed the Hellenized Edomites in 125BCE. He then did something shameful in forcing them to convert. When the Romans came, they turned control of Judea over to Edomites like Antipater his half Nabatean (Arab) spawn, Herod. Because of this connection of the Romans and Edomites, Rabbinic literature generally combines the two. The curses on the Edomites in the Talmud are generally meant for Rome and Byzantium, and the Roman colonists, who were ethnically cleansing Jews.


15 posted on 09/05/2012 4:14:59 PM PDT by rmlew ("Mosques are our barracks, minarets our bayonets, domes our helmets, the believers our soldiers.")
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To: blueunicorn6
"Well, how did God, and the Jewish people, feel about their neighbors who were sacrificing babies?"

The Jews were sacrificing their babies and engaging in child sacrifice themselves, as is well documented in Jeremiah and Ezekiel.

16 posted on 09/05/2012 4:19:07 PM PDT by circlecity
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Comment #17 Removed by Moderator

To: rmlew
crushed the Hellenized Edomites in 125BCE

BCE? Really?
18 posted on 09/05/2012 4:19:48 PM PDT by fr_freak
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To: rmlew

Real Jews read, write, and speak Hebrew. The rest are fakes.


19 posted on 09/05/2012 4:20:04 PM PDT by reg45 (Barack 0bama: Implementing class warfare by having no class!)
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To: rmlew

Real Jews read, write, and speak Hebrew. The rest are fakes.


20 posted on 09/05/2012 4:20:04 PM PDT by reg45 (Barack 0bama: Implementing class warfare by having no class!)
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