He Said, She Said

I am fascinated by the unfolding Brett Kavanaugh – Christine Blasey Ford drama – this is quintessential “he said – she said”, in its almost purest form. In my lecture(s) for this past year’s parashas Vayeshev,1 with its archetypal narrative of Joseph and Potiphar’s wife, I broached a highly speculative argument for granting some credibility …

Justice Denied Revisited

Around this time last year, we discussed the controversy over the theological correctness of the phrase “ולוקח נפשות במשפט” added to ברכת המזון in a house of mourning, in light of the Biblical phrase “וְיֵשׁ נִסְפֶּה בְּלֹא מִשְׁפָּט” and the Talmudic assertion that “יש מיתה בלא חטא”. I have long had a vague sense of …

Voting One’s Conscience

Dylan Matthews, in a Washington Post “Wonkblog” post, illustrates the concept of “strategic”, “tactical”, or “insincere” voting1: Why is Harry Reid always voting against his own plans? Forty U.S. senators voted to block a final vote on Chuck Hagel’s nomination to be defense secretary. Of those, 39 were Republicans opposed to the nomination, at least …