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January 15, 2010

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Vol. 5 Issue 147


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The Buck Stops Here!

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Jan. 15, 2010


No one seems to assume responsibility any more. It’s someone else’s business. The clerk is entitled to a break. The counter-terrorism chief takes his 7 year-old on a six day ski trip. No one seems to see themselves as responsible. Breaks and vacations even take precedence to national security.

Never Lose The Spirit


In the history of Egypt not a single slave had ever escaped. How could an entire nation ever walk free? Moses was a dreamer, they must have thought. Rabbi Yossy Goldman

Dr. Robert Rome

Was the Airplane Terrorist BRAINWASHED? It is an extreme case when an American youth is manipulated into joining a terrorist group. However, a lack of proper preparation does leave many students vulnerable to the overtures of cults and deceptive missionary groups.



Man & Woman

When a man is treated like nothing, it's not the injustice that hurts him it is the truth that hurts. He is nothing and he hates being reminded of it. Rabbi Manis Friedman

Rabbi Bentzion Kravitz

community links • Volume 5 Issue 147

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Jan. 15, 2010

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By Robert J. Rome, Ph.D.

By: Robert J. Rome, Ph.D. Robert J. Rome, Ph.D., is a licensed Psychologist in clinical practice in Encino, California. He can be reached at


Jan. 15, 2010

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he Buck Stops Here” was the famous saying posted on the desk of President Harry Truman. It was a very clear statement. President Truman took ultimate responsibility for everything that happened in his government. This sent a message to every department leader in Washington at that time. When the guy at the top takes responsibility, everyone under him follows suit, taking full responsibility for their own jobs. We are no longer sure where “the buck stops” in government today. The head of the counter-terrorism unit in Washington decided to go on a ski vacation the day after the recent Underwear Bomber incident. Not only did he leave the day after the incident, he remained on his ski retreat and out of Washington for six days, during the entire revelation of the failures of our intelligence system and our airport security system. He never saw a need to return to his job during time of crisis. He made a decision that a ski trip with his son trumped responsibility in his position as the man in charge of counter-terrorism. This failure to lead and failure to even do your job is not restricted to any party. We saw similar incompetence during the Bush administration’s response to Hurricane Katrina. But one has to question how a departmental head does not return to Washington by day three when it became clear that a major failure in intelligence and in counter-terrorism had occurred. We see all around us acts of incompetence on virtually every level. How many times have you been in line in the post office when despite a lengthening line, the clerk at one of the three open windows decides it’s time for his or her break. With only two lines now open, the line of customers gets longer and longer. The coffee break is over and you’re still in line. The employee’s break creates a bottleneck which lasts for hours, and even creates more work and pressure for the offending clerk. No one seems to assume responsibility any more. It’s someone else’s business. The clerk is entitled to a break. The counter-terrorism chief takes his 7 year-old on a six day ski trip. No one seems to see themselves as responsible. Breaks and vacations even take precedence to national security. There are often unintended consequences to changes we make in society. In previous generations, there was a draft and forced service in the military by men. From boot camp throughout the required military service,


Jan. 15, 2010

sailors, soldiers, and marines became part of a larger team. There was a feeling that the team depended on each individual. Every one contributed. Each person had responsibility over part of the team’s work. I served nine years in the Navy Reserve, three years on active duty with the Marines. I knew that in case of an emergency or even a special training, I would have to give up vacation time and be available for duty. When there was a murder on base at Camp Pendleton and I was on duty, I was available as a Chaplain to the victims’ families. Lunch, dinner, or other breaks were secondary to the task at hand. When I was needed to serve the Pacific Fleet because of the lack of a Jewish Chaplain on duty to the Fleet, my vacation had to be set aside and postponed. Duty came first. Imagine that. A Jewish Chaplain in the San Diego area must assume responsibility and give up a vacation, while the head of counter-terrorism for the entire United States of America leaves town after a major terrorist act for six days without any semblance of responsibility. Without mandatory military service, a whole generation has come to serve in politics or government without military service or background. These “government servants” never came to feel responsibility toward the team which comes with military service. The pride of service which comes along with being in the military was also never experienced. They don’t seem to understand the potential importance of the work they do. Why not take a vacation at any time? They simply don’t see their work as part of the larger team. The lack of requisite military service has contributed to an environment where there is no sense of importance to the team. There is no reason to come back from vacation. There is no larger cause felt. Presidents get embarrassed by the ridiculous actions of those who work for and with them. “Good job Brownie” became symptomatic of a larger problem during Katrina. Those absent on the job during the Christmas day terror act on the flight to Detroit will do for President Obama what “Brownie” did for Bush and Katrina. We are unlikely to get back a draft and required military service any time soon. But there needs to be a change in the importance we give to the work of others and the importance they see in their own work.

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We live in a society where we are all very much dependent on the work of others. Our lives depend on those who collect the trash, on those who teach our children, on those who work at the DMV, indeed on all workers whose work intersects our own lives. We need to appreciate the work of all others. We need for them to know that our lives depend on them. People who feel their jobs are important will assume the responsibility needed for completion of the job. People go away in the middle of a crisis because they come to see their role as unnecessary. We live in a world where many are treated as expendable, even those in high places. We need to make everyone feel that they are important and that what they do has meaning and purpose. The problem is not that one governmental official went on a ski trip, the problem is more general than that. From the post office clerk to the higher positions in government, people just don’t seem to take their jobs seriously. Why wouldn’t a vacation take precedence over a position that does not necessarily count? People matter. What they do matters. The sooner we get everyone to feel that their jobs make a difference, the sooner people will take themselves and what they do more seriously. We may not be able to change the behavior of 50 yearold bureaucrats. We may need to start with how we treat children. We give awards to those who excel in math and science, but we have taken away wood and metal shop and other

vocational classes from those who excel in these hands on tasks and subjects. We honor those who get accepted to Ivy League colleges, but fail to recognize those who complete a body shop or mechanics course. The good auto mechanic is as necessary in our lives as the tax attorney, yet, all of life’s benefits seem to be given to the attorney and not to the skillful mechanic. In the military, the private first class has a necessary role, just as the lieutenant. No job is without its importance. But outside of the world of the military, there is a hierarchy in jobs. Even the unit boss may see himself or herself as not really that important. This has to change. We can’t control the bureaucrats in Washington. We can control how we treat those who surround us in our communities. Rather than only speaking to the owner of the cleaners when spots remain on a blouse, get to know this neighbor in the community. Thank the gardener for saving the azalea that seemed to be dying. Show appreciation to your children’s teachers. Make everyone feel they matter. We can help to bring about a society where each individual is important, where every worker steps forward in an emergency. As we improve our local communities, we can only then hope that these feelings of importance and value will trickle up to Washington. Our society depends on everyone taking appropriate responsibility in an emergency. With increased sense of importance on the job when there is no emergency, there will be an even greater response during times of need.

Robert J. Rome, Ph.D., is a licensed psychologist in clinical practice in Encino, California. He can be reached at

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By Rabbi Bentzion Kravitz

Was the Airplane Terrorist

Brainwashed? 14

Jan. 15, 2010

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hristmas day’s failed terrorist plot to blow up a Northwest Airlines flight has police and airline personnel beefing up security, and others wondering how this could happen.

Umar Mutallab, the 23-year-old Nigeria born terrorist, was subdued by other passengers while trying to ignite an explosive device attached to his body. To many, Umar’s youthful appearance, fluent English and education made him an unlikely terrorist suspect. Michael Rimmer, a Briton who taught history at the British International School in Lome, Togo, knew Umar and said, “In all the time I taught Umar we never had cross words…. Somewhere along the line he must have met some sort of fanatics, and they must have turned his mind." Rimmer’s comment brings back memories. Who can forget the image of John Walker Lindh, with his face encrusted in mud? Lindh, who grew up in northern California’s affluent Marin County, had been brainwashed to join and fight for the Taliban in Afghanistan until he was captured in 2001 by US forces. Once again it appears that a young man, Umar Mutallab, may have been recruited and brainwashed to join a terrorist organization. There are several important lessons to take from this incident. Firstly, mind control and deception are frequently used by terrorists to recruit and indoctrinate new members. Secondly, we should not be so naïve to think the terrorist profile excludes educated, young and good looking individuals. Doing so lets our guard down and makes us more vulnerable to attack. Finally, despite their education, many young people lack critical thinking skills and the tools to cope with peer pressure. Perhaps the following quote sums up the attitude we should take and the lesson we should teach our children: “When you meet the friendliest people you have ever known, who introduce you to the most loving group of people you've ever encountered, and you find the leader to be the most inspired, caring compassionate, and understanding person you've ever met, and then you learn that the cause of the group is something you never dared hope could be accomplished, and all of this sounds too good to be true - it probably is too good to be true! Don't give up your education, your hopes, and ambitions, to follow a rainbow." - Jeanne Mills Jeanne Mills was a member of the “People's Temple” cult and subsequent victim of assassination a year following the November 18, 1978 Jonestown suicides/murders of 911 adults and children. It is an extreme case when an American youth is manipulated into joining a terrorist group. However, a lack of proper preparation does leave many students vulnerable to the overtures of cults and deceptive missionary groups. Dr. William Sargant in his classic work, “Battle for the Mind,” points out that the best defense against mind-control and thought reform is an awareness of manipulative techniques and a pre-existing and strong belief system. In other words, the famous Latin expression Caveat Emptor, "Let the buyer beware," is a powerful defense again the persuasion of cults, missionary and even terrorists. Developing critical thinking skills needs to start at a very young age. We teach our children to look both ways before they cross the street, and we need them to “look both ways” before they are confronted by the numerous seductive challenges that exist today. Rabbi Bentzion Kravitz is the founder of Jews for Judaism and its student initiative that empowers youth to make critical choices. He can be reached at


Jan. 15, 2010

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Passo a veer to new heights this yyear ear e T akakeke Passover holiday at the with a rrelaxing, elaxing, enriching e Running Retreat Kiryas R u unning SSprings prings R eetreat Center at K iiryas Schneerson. Our 70-acre O ur spectacular 70-acr 7 re campus in the Bernardino National S. Ber rn narrdino d N atiional Forest Fo orrest e combines modern moder rn facilities with w timeless natural beauty to create crreate e a spiritual sp piritual oasis. During During Pesach our family-oriented f il i d P eesach h experience, enjoy lectures, yyou’ll ou o ’ll enjo oy inspiringg lectur res, e fun outdoor events, ev veents, and deliciouss kosher meals.

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Jan. 15, 2010

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magine you have been working on the job for years and years. It is hard, manual labor and you are not simply tired but exhausted, demoralized, drained and frustrated. And then, one fine day, some new fellow on the floor stands up and promises a whole new world of equality, rewards and ultimate freedom. Do you believe him or are you beyond hope? Do you dare hold out for a better tomorrow and risk being devastated and cast into despair yet again or do you simply accept your fate and give up dreaming? So it was with our ancestors in Egypt. They were slaving away all those years when a new face appeared and began making promises. Moses brings a message from G-d that they are about to be redeemed. There is a Promised Land ahead. All is not lost. There is light at the end of the tunnel. The Jews' response? And they did not listen to Moses out of shortness of breath and from the hard labor. One commentary explains that “shortness of breath” shouldn’t be understood only literally. The Hebrew for breath is ruach, which can also mean “spirit.” In other words, they weren’t able to heed Moses’ call not only from physical breathlessness, but because they lacked the spirit. Having suffered in bondage for so long, they no longer had the faith or hope to believe that freedom was still in the realm of the possible. It was simply beyond them. They had lost the spirit. In the history of Egypt not a single slave had ever escaped. How could an entire nation ever walk free? Moses was a dreamer, they must have thought. It is just not realistic to hold out such high hopes only to have them dashed yet again. And so the people were utterly despondent and spiritless and, therefore, they could not hear, i.e. absorb, Moses’ message. It happens all too often. People become so set in their mediocrity that they give up hope of ever achieving the breakthrough. Marriages get stuck in the rut of routine and the tedious treadmill keeps rolling along until we lose even the desire to dream. And Israel’s people, even brave leaders, are so despondent from years of war, attrition and terror that they clutch at imaginary straws because, basically, if we are honest with ourselves, they have simply lost the resolve. I have often quoted a wise proverb heard in the name of the legendary Chasid, Reb Mendel Futerfas. “If you lose your money, you’ve lost nothing. Money comes and money goes. If you lose your health, you’ve lost half. You are not the person you were before. But if you lose your resolve, you’ve lost it all.” Moses brought new hope to a depressed, dreamless nation. He gave them back the spirit they had lost and eventually, through the miracles of G-d, the promise was fulfilled and the dream became destiny. To be out of breath is normal. To be out of spirit is something the Jewish People can never afford. May we never lose the spirit. •

Rabbi Yossy Goldman is Senior Rabbi of the Sydenham Highlands North Shul since 1986, and president of the South African Rabbinical Association.


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Man & Woman By Rabbi Manis Friedman


Jan. 15, 2010

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hen G-d created Adam, at the moment Adam opened his eyes, what was his psychological profile? He had no Oedipus complex because he had no mother. He didn't have a birth trauma, because he wasn't born. He had no sibling rivalry... What was this man like? What was the makeup of his psyche?


Interestingly, Adam didn't have a survival instinct either. That's why when G-d said, "The day you eat from this tree, you'll die," Adam wasn't impressed. "Oh, so I'll die." He had no survival instinct. So, what was going on in his mind? Adam had a death wish. That was his psyche. He had a death wish because life felt so unnatural. In a sense, when G-d said, "From dust you are, and to dust you shall return," that described Adam's psyche. "I come from dust, I want to go back." Back to what? Back to dust. Back to nothingness. Men, to this day, have this complex. If you strip away the externalities, the trappings -- if you take away his car, and his money, and his blue suede shoes -- there's nothing, there's dust. Every man is terrified that in the end, he will have amounted to nothing, regardless of his accomplishments. He can be the wealthiest, most powerful and successful person, the most talented and the most admired. Deep down, inside he is afraid that it is all going to go away and he is going to remain a nothing, a non-entity, a zero. Women don't have this. A woman does not have a fear or a suspicion of her own nothingness. It doesn't exist. Because Eve was not created from dust, she was created from Adam. So where a man is afraid of being reduced back to nothing, a woman, if you take away all her accomplishments, all her achievements, will be reduced to a man. When you take away a woman's being, she doesn't become a nothing, she becomes him. She loses herself in him. When you take away a man's being, he doesn't lose himself in her, he becomes nothing. That's why a man needs to accomplish. He must accomplish, because he needs to deny this nothingness. Whereas a woman doesn't need to accomplish in order to exist -- she needs to accomplish in order to be appreciated.

When a man is treated like nothing, it's not the injustice that hurts him -- it is the truth that hurts.

Because if you're a nothing and you have to become a something, then accomplishment is everything, and respect is what you need more than anything else. Respect means you are a something. A woman, who is not afraid of becoming nothing, does not understand and can not tolerate when her somethingness is not appreciated. So what a woman needs more than anything else is appreciation.

The Talmud says that a man should honor his wife and be very careful with her feelings. A man should be careful of his wife's honor, because a woman is sensitive to injustice. This is not just an idle observation about women. At the core of a woman's being, it is the injustice that bothers her. She is being treated as if she was nothing, and that's not true. She is something, and that injustice hurts. When a man is treated like nothing, it's not the injustice that hurts him -- it is the truth that hurts. He is nothing and he hates being reminded of it. His reaction is not as to an injustice, it is not a moral indignation, it's a personal hurt. Whereas with a woman, no matter how badly she is abused or devastated, it remains a moral injustice to her. This is why there can be a woman who is abused for years in a relationship, and all the while she tells herself that she deserves it. A man cannot do that. He can not say, "I deserve it," because that's not the issue. The issue, to the man, is "am I or am I not." If you abuse me, then I am not and I can't take that. I can not be diminished to nothing and go on living. A woman, on the other hand, simply tells herself, "I deserve this, therefore it is not an injustice." In this way she can go on living. This explains why men are aggressive. A man is desperate to be recognized as a something, and so he needs to prove himself, he needs to achieve, he needs to acquire. This need to acquire is an aggression. Whereas a woman is


Jan. 15, 2010

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determined to retain what is hers, to remain herself. No matter how intensely she pursues that, it is not aggression, because she's not out to acquire -- she is trying to preserve. When the lion goes hunting, he's aggressive. When the lioness goes hunting, she's trying to sustain her family. Though she may be more violent than the male, it is not aggression -- it is maintenance. When you threaten a bear cub when its mother is around, you're in big trouble. You say, "Oh, this mother is aggressive." Yet she's not, she's totally passive. If you don't present a threat she's fine, she's not out to get you. She doesn't want anything you have. She wants to maintain what she has and that she'll do ferociously. But that's maintaining, so it's not aggression. In contrast, the male lion wants what you have, and he's going to get it. So even if he does it nicely, even if he does it gently, it's aggression. Even a very subtle and polite seduction is aggression, because you are trying to get what isn't yours. You are out to get something, you're acquiring, you are a predator. You can be a nice predator, but that, too, is aggressive. Men are called aggressive because they need something they don't have. Women are called passive, because they don't necessarily want what they don't have; they like what they do have. We are not talking about physical possessions, rather psychological, the psyche. This helps us to understand the blessings men and women make before the Morning Prayer. A man says, "Thank You for not making me a woman." A man is grateful for what he is not. Because he can't make a positive statement, he can't say, Thank You for what I am. He's never sure he is anything. A woman says, "Thank You for making me as You want me to be." A woman can make a positive statement about herself, because she knows that she is. She is grateful for what she is. •


Jan. 15, 2010

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THE JEWISH LEADERSHIP MOVEMENT COMES TO L.A. MOSHE FEIGLIN the Leader of MANHIGUT YEHUDIT - The Jewish Leadership Movement within the Likud Party in Israel recently visited the West Coast during his crosscountry speaking tour. He was accompanied by Shmuel Sackett, International Director of Manhigut Yehudit. Los Angeles County Commissioner Howard Winkler organized a porPhoto (L-R): Los Angeles County Commissioner Howard tion of his visit which included an elegant Winkler, Moshe Feiglin & event hosted by Shiloh's Restaurant on Pico Shmuel Sackett at a Manhigut Boulevard in L.A. The event was attended by Yehudit Jewish Leadership event. influential leaders from various segments of the Los Angeles/Beverly Hills Jewish Communities. Moshe Feiglin enumerated his "10 point" plan to bring about change and renewal to advance the goals of the State of Israel. They are: 1. Ensure that Israel remains a Jewish state. 2. Elect a leader with personal integrity who will be loyal to the Jewish majority in Israel. 3. A Jewish Education for every Jewish child. 4. A modern and open economy based on Jewish values. 5. To defeat its enemies - not to flee from them. 6. Restore justice to the justice system. 7. A courageous leader to deal with Israel’s Arabs. 8. Unbiased media open to the entire nation. 9. A moral society. 10. A leader who believes in G-d, the Jewish People, and the completeness of the Land of Israel. Manhigut Yehudit's website is

SHERIFF VISITS CONG. SHAAREI ZEDEK IN VALLEY VILLAGE CA Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca visited Congregation Shaarei Zedek in Valley Village, CA. He met with the shul's Senior Rabbi Jonathan Rosenberg. The Meeting was arranged by Sheriff's Chaplain Devorah Lunger, a member of the Orthodox Jewish Chaplaincy Board. After a tour of the shul the Sheriff said that he was impressed with the community which has been so supportive of Law Enforcement. The Sheriff said that he was very familiar with the Valley Village Community and had visited the shul several times in the past. He is also an honorary member of the Emek Hebrew Academy board and enjoys working together with Rav Eliezer Eidlitz, its Executive Director.


Jan. 15, 2010

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Jan. 15, 2010

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Jan. 15, 2010

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Jan. 15, 2010

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Jan. 15, 2010

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n this week's portion, once again, Hashem sent Moshe and Ahron to Pharaoh in a second effort to sway his heart and have him change his mind to let the Hebrews leave Egypt. Unlike the unembellished appeal in last week's portion, this time they were equipped with more than pleas - this time they came with miracles. Standing in front of the ruler, Ahron threw his stick down and it turned into a snake. Pharaoh was not impressed. He countered with a little magic of his own. His sorcerers matched the miraculous stick-to-snake act by having his spooks throw down their sticks and by transforming them into snakes. Ahron one-upped the Egyptian magicians as his stick swallowed all of their sticks. But that obviously was not enough. Pharaoh's heart was once again hardened and he refused to let the Jews leave Egypt. And so, Hashem decided that the benign miracles would not be effective with the stubborn king. It was time for the heavy artillery -the ten plagues. Hashem commands Moshe: "Go to Pharaoh in the morning -- behold! He goes out to the water -- and you shall stand opposite him at the river's bank, and the staff that was turned into a snake you shall take in your hand" (Exodus 7:15). A simple question bothers me. Moshe had only one special stick. There are various Midrashic explanations as to its origin, but everyone agrees it was a unique one. It was a special one with special powers. Moshe may have been a leader of many hats, but he only carried one stick. Why did Hashem need to define the stick as the one that turned into a snake? He could have simply asked Moshe to come with his stick. Moshe would surely have known exactly which stick Hashem wanted him to take. Charles Lutwidge Dodgson is better known to us as Lewis Carroll, author of the 1865 children's fantasy story, Alice in Wonderland. What most of us do not know about him was that he was also a brilliant mathematician spending more than twenty-five years teaching at Oxford University.

An apocryphal story relates that Queen Victoria was so delighted after reading his fantasy-laced novel, Alice in Wonderland, that she asked him to send her any other works penned by the same quill. Dodgson responded immediately, but the Queen was somewhat taken aback when she received two of his other works, Syllabus of Plane Algebraical Geometry and An Elementary Treatise on Determinants. We tend to look at the world and forget that routine natural events are also replete with awe-inspiring miracles and supernatural properties. We become acclimated to the mundane miracles of life so that we also shrug when Hashem turns proverbial sticks into proverbial snakes. We feel we can do that too! Therefore, before orchestrating the largest insubordination of natural law in world history, by turning the flowing Nile into a virtual blood bath, Moshe is told to bring with him the stick that Pharaoh only considered to be capable of performing minor miracles. Moshe is told that the same stick that was not able to impress Pharaoh has the ability to shatter the Egyptian economy and with it the haughty attitude that kept the Hebrew nation enslaved. Sometimes our marvel of G-d's wonders is dulled by the scoffing of the naysayers. They lead us to forget that the same power behind the minor miracles of life are the generators of great miracles that we can hardly fathom and surely not anticipate! Even the incomprehensible miracle of life itself is blunted by its ongoing regularity. Our emotions become bored and our intellect spoiled with the majestic events that are considered trite by their regular reoccurrence. And when we fail to see the greatness of genius in the wonderland in which we live, we expect G-d to send us a more prominent message. But we must never forget that even the most awe-inspiring message comes from the same Hand and Stick that bring us the simplest benign worms! •

Raise the Baton! PARSHAS VAERA 34

Jan. 15, 2010

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by Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky

Wise Organic Pastures was founded as a beef company and that remains their singular focus today. They do not raise other organic proteins, so they can focus on bringing only the highest quality of consistently tender and flavorful organic beef to market. By combining its own USDA-inspected and certified organic processing facility in South Dakota, organic pasture land in Oklahoma, and an organic ranch in Oregon, Wise Organic Pastures has developed a unique vertical integration to ensure the very best genetics, health, animal welfare, and nutrition of its organic cattle.

Natural ABF David Elliott Kosher a. "Humanely Raised on Sustainable US Farms and Ranches b. "Never Given Any Hormones, Ever" c. "Never Given Any Antibiotics, Ever" d. "Fed All Vegetarian Diet"

All Wise Organic Pastures cattle are: • Born and raised on certified organic pastures. Free for at least three years of chemical fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides. • Fed only certified organic, strictly vegetarian diet. • Cows have never EVER been fed genetically modified organisms (GMOs). • Given unrestricted access to the outdoors. • Treated humanely to reduce stress and maintain good health.


Jan. 15, 2010

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A special father / son breakfast at Emek Hebrew Academy Teichman Family Torah Center – where the parents and students learned the Halochos of Tzitzis and tied and prepared their very own pair of Kosher Tzitzis.

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Jan. 15, 2010







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Jan. 15, 2010

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n this week's portion Moshe warns the Egyptian nation about the last and most devastating of the ten plagues - Death of the First Born. Therefore, he tells the Egyptian ruler, "Thus says Hashem, 'At about midnight I will go about Egypt and strike the first born'" (Exodus 11:4)


The vague expression "about midnight" is noted by Rashi who quotes the Talmud in Tractate Berachos. In actuality, it was the plague occurred exactly at midnight (Exodus 12:29). Why then, would Hashem Whose all encompassing magnifying eye can discern milliseconds as if they were eternities, need to identify the time of striking with the vague reference "about midnight." Why didn't Moshe warn the Egyptians that at the exact strike of midnight Hashem would smite the firstborn? Surely the indefinite timing was not done to catch the Egyptians off guard. Hashem could have told them the exact second and they would have been helpless and defenseless in an attempt to stop Him! The Talmud explains that Moshe was reluctant to say that Hashem would strike at midnight. He suspected that the Egyptians with their fallible timepieces would miscalculate the hour of attack. Then they would then point their fingers and scoff, saying that the attack was off by several moments and question the accuracy of both Moshe's prediction and Hashem's ability to execute precisely as predicted. Therefore, Moshe gave the fuzzy reference "about midnight" even though the actual attack occurred precisely at that hour. When I learned the Rashi and later the Talmudic source that he based his explanation on, I stood in wonder. On the night of one of the most calamitous events in Egyptian History, how can we fathom a skeptical reaction based on the mere miscalculation of at most a few seconds. Which Egyptian would actually care enough to even discern if there were a discrepancy of a few seconds. More so, after losing thousands of firstborn children, which Egyptian would have the audacity to mock Moshe by saying that the attack was mistimed? Clearly, definitive judgment was an eternal hallmark of G-d's Divine judgments. There cannot be even an iota of room for question. But how would the Egyptians even think to find skepticism in an ever so powerful and disastrous calamity that clearly is stamped with the Seal of the Divine? An old story I heard, at least in one variation begins with a foolish smuggler who was caught with thousands of dollars worth of contraband merchandise being accosted by his vicious captor. The accused man refuses to divulge any information about the source of the bounty so the officer decides to play hardball with him.

PARSHAS BO by Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky


Jan. 15, 2010

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He forces the poor man to stand behind a solid white line and threatens him with physical violence dare he crosses the boundary. "If I catch you stepping over that line," he shouts, "I'll break every bone in your body!" The frightened fool is stuck behind the line while the sadistic official demolishes every bit of the booty. He rips the cloth, smashes the pots and pans, and shatters the glass items. Suddenly the pathetic victim begins laughing. He slaps his sides in astonishing indifference to the havoc and destruction being wreaked upon his smuggled wares. Finally, the officer stops smashing the merchandise and screams at the hysterical fellow. "Hey you! What do you think is so funny?" The poor punch line has the feeble victim mocking the officer. "Ha Ha!" he shouts. "While you weren't looking, I stepped over the line three times!" There is a pathetic nature often associated with defeat. The loser tries to find solace in the phyrric, meaningless victories of tiny nothings. The world may be collapsing around him yet he will grasp the tiniest solace in his brilliant accomplishment by finding a meaningless point of an imagined breach in an all-encompassing armor. The people of Mitzrayim (Egypt) were reeling from the greatest tragedy in history, yet they would search to find a discrepancy of a few seconds to justify their desperate attempt at defiance. How often do we revel in our phyrric victories when they are nothing more than Pharaohic victories? •

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Jan. 15, 2010

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Jan. 15, 2010

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Jan. 15, 2010

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Jan. 15, 2010

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1. Green sock changed to brown. 2. The girl sitting on the step in the background is missing. 3. The circle in the front was changed to fully red. 4. The number 8 has been flipped. 5. One of the right poles is missing. 6. Red handle is flipped. 7. One of the girls magen Dovid is missing from her necklace. 8. There is only one window in the back instead of double windows. 9. One silver metal ring is missing from the left pole. 10. The ball which the girl is sitting on has changed from red to blue.



“Chai” to Bais Chaya Mushka’s Phone-a-Thon! q q Say January 31, 2010! Please answer the call! q q On To make your Chai pledges, Please Call: (310) 859-0770 Or the web: & click on ‘Donate’. q q On To volunteer for the phone- a- thon or other volunteer opportunities q q please call (310) 859- 0770 qq

Can you spot the differences in these two pictures?


Calfornia Kosher Kitchen

Sweet and Sour Brisket

Engagements Melissa Avigail Ellis & Sam Yaghoubi Tanya Gershon & Joe Warshawsky Suri Goldberg & Ari Reiss Neda Zargari & Alfred Lavi Fraydee Posner & Mendel Kessler Zeecy Krieman & Berel Yemini Rena Zingmond & Yehoshua Richards Courtney Deutsch & Gabe Rosenthal

Weddings Batya Pykovsky & Ari Richler Rachel Cooper & Daniel Schilowitz Ariella Rieber & Shaya Larkin

Births - Boys Layla & Levi Zirkin

Births - Girls Sarah & Ari Brown Devorah & Shloimy Smilow Chana Shifra & Dovid Tenenbaum

Ingredients * 1 (3-pound) beef brisket, first-cut or flat-half cut, trimmed of any excess fat

* 1 teaspoon salt * 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper * 2 tablespoons canola oil * 1 medium onion, cut in 1/2, then thinly sliced into 1/2 moons * 3 cloves garlic, chopped (about 1 tablespoon) * One 15- oz. can tomato sauce, preferably no salt added * 1/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth or water * 3 tablespoons firmly packed dark brown sugar * 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon cider vinegar * 1/3 cup raisins * 5 black peppercorns * 1 allspice berry


Send us your mazel tovs to

FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2010 Light Candles at: 4:49 pm •••

FRIDAY, JANUARY 22, 2010 Light Candles at: 4:55 pm •••

FRIDAY, JANUARY 29, 2010 Light Candles at: 5:02 pm


Jan. 15, 2010

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Pat the brisket dry and sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat in a Dutch oven or braising pot. Sear the brisket until it is browned, 4 to 5 minutes per side. Transfer the brisket to a plate. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the pot and cook the onion, stirring a few times, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the tomato sauce, broth, brown sugar, 1/3 cup of the vinegar, the raisins, peppercorns, and allspice and stir to combine well. Bring mixture to a boil, return brisket and any accumulated juices to the pot, spoon some of the tomato-vinegar mixture over the brisket, cover tightly, and transfer to the oven. Cook until the brisket is fork tender, 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Remove the brisket from the oven, transfer the meat to a cutting board, and let rest for 10 to 20 minutes or, if serving later, cover and refrigerate the meat and sauce for several hours or overnight. When you are ready to serve, cut the meat against the grain into 1/4- inch thick slices. Stir the remaining 1 tablespoon vinegar into the warm sauce. Return the sliced brisket to the sauce until heated through, then serve.

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A Perfect Setting Great gifts for all occasions- invited out for a Shabbos meal? Baby gifts...Bas Mitzvah g i f t s . . . We d d i n g gifts...House warming gifts...Don't put it off. Come in today and go out relieved. Call for a special appointment


Yosef Y. Shagalov:

Traveling Notary Public & Home Signing Agent.

Cell:(323)934-7095 email:


323-938-8222 or 323-6203618 ask for Rochel -692-

WEDDING SHTICK “Shticky Business" Shtick rental for all Simchas. Reasonable rates, beautiful one of a kind items. Arches, Umbrellas, Balloons, Mazel Tov signs, Pom Poms & more. Call Rivky at 323-997-5968 BEAUTY

You name it we design it! Business Cards, Postcards, Posters, Flyers, Stickers, CD/DVD Covers, Websites, Wedding & Bar/Bat Mitzvah Invitations, Scrapbook Albums, Digital Books, Tshirts, & More...

BRIS - ,hrc

will help you eliminate unwanted hair! Doctor referred over 10 years in the community. Reasonable rates, Flexible hours open Sundays by appt.

Traditional Ritual Circumcision Rabbi Nachman B. Kreiman Certified Mohel vjnun kvun

Home: 323.934.9329 Cell: 323.896.5098

Over 20 years experience, lessons at your location, all levels and all ages.

323-397-2535 PIANO LESSONS

Piano Lessons for adult & children over six. At your location. First Lesson free. Reasonable rates. Call Lidia 310.289.5039 or



A Time for Dance Ballet and Pointe Program PREBALLET through POINTE. Unlike any other, follows the "Royal Academy of Dance"guidelines but also encourages creative process and artistry! Girls, Teens & Women ages 2- up. 3 Convenient Locations Call for your free trial class:

What do I do when my child (fill in your least acceptable behavior)? Take the best parenting class in town to learn how to deal with misbehavior, discouragement and poor school performance. In addition, acquire all the skills necessary to raise confident, independent, and responsible children. Appropriate for ages 0-5, 6-11, and teens. Individual or group sessions. Affordable. Call Irine Schweitzer, LCSW for more information, @ 818 754-4501. -1548-

Eli's One Man Band

310-462-5368 or email -1510-



SOFER STAM Channa Tellis Dress Maker & Expert Alterations with 40 yrs of experience, also available for Sewing Classes.

Please Call 323-9335960 or 323-3488786


Ariel Louk "Because A Simcha Should Be Happy."

Orchestra / One Man Band. Weddings, Bar/Bat Mivahs, Special Occasions. Quality music, Competitive prices. References available.


HOSIERY Luxurious Italian Womans’ Hosiery. Amazing Prices, starting from only $3.25 Call Sarah 818.451.5622

(323) 404-0827


Parenting Group Parenting Group for Women with Young Children Based on the Teachings of the Lubavitcher Rebbe. EVERY WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON at 1:00 7114 Rosewood Avenue (between La Brea and Detroit)



Jan. 15, 2010

Parenting With Wisdom

for all your simchas and special events. For more info Please call Eli Stiefel




Call anytime for an appt.

Sofer Coming from Israel to LA!!! Ten used kosher sefer Torahs with Kashrus certificates for Sale. Also available for repairs. New or used Torahs for sale. Please Call 718-560-3031


Drum Lessons



Robin Schultz Ackerman


For more information, please call Ariel Louk: Cell: 323-997-2647 Tel: 310-659-9346

Are you Unemployed and collecting Unemployment Benefits? FULL Financial Aid is available to unemployed individuals. Receive career training at NO COST to YOU. These funds are available through President Obama’s Economic Stimulus Package. Act now while funds are available. Los Angeles ORT Technical Institute has several Nationally Accredited Career Training Programs. Please call 323-966-5444. Ask for Flora or Jesse.

for more information call Miriam at 323-964-9767 or e-mail:


HEBREW TUTORING Hebrew tutoring available for all ages. From beginners to advanced. We can help you fully understand and speak Hebrew. Available in the La Brea / Hancock Park neighborhood. References available on request. For more information Please call Sara at



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Orthodox woman available to watch your children full time or part-time hours, at your location. Excellent references. 323-6519389

BOOKKEEPING For all your bookkeeping needs call Raizy Grossman @ 310-279-2139




Near Pico/Beverly Drive, double entry door, granite kitchen, stainless steel appliances, washer/dryer, 2 full & 1 guest bathroom, master bedroom/master bathroom/walk in closet. Exotic bamboo floors, central AC, elevator, fitness room, subterranean parking, intercom. Built in 2008. 2 weeks free with one year lease. Call Daniel @

310 925 -9972 FOR RENT Pico/Robertson. Bright 1 Bedroom, new wood floors, new double stainless steel sink, sunny balcony. Walk to all. Call 310-210-3038 GUEST HOUSE

Charming Guest House with private patio, furnished, 360 sqf. , Kosher kitchenette & private bathroom on Olympic & La Jolla. Utilities included, no smoking, no pets, References please. Call David at Home: 323-934-4826. C: 323-687-4154 ROOM FOR RENT One bedroom for rent with private bathroom, separate entrance, laundry and kosher kitchen available. Utilities included. Month to month contract. References please. Call David at Home: 323-934-4826. Cell: 323-687-4154 ROOMATE WANTED young male wants male roomies.3bd/3bth townhouse @Coldwater/Victory. New paint/remodeled. Near Kosher food & shuls.Call Boruch (818)426-8145


Jan. 15, 2010

Tehachapi Torah Center New Prime 18 Acre Location. Healthy, Serene, Child Friendly, Affordable. For example newly listed 4 Bed 4 Bath 2339 SF Chateau on .65 acre view lot w/ oak trees 250K. The Tehachapi Torah Centered Community is suited for families, individuals, and existing Torah organizations. Tehachapi Ca. 93561, 90 miles/minutes from route 14 at 5. Twice the Home for Half the Money. Homes from $115k, Lots 20k. Lease from: Apartments $550, Houses $850. Learn More! Contact Roger M. or call 310-948-5137

MOVING SALE Sofa, wicker table with matching wicker mirror, Dresser, Lamps, various art works, and miscellaneous items. Please call 310-859-1121 or 424-288-0308


Salesman Wanted Experienced salesman wanted in home furnishing business in the Pico/Robertson area. Full time, salery + Commission. Please call 310-877-5555


Excellent Opportunity for highly motivated sales person to work for growing business. Create your own hours. Work from home. For further information please email us at info@community Ref #1980

JOB OPPORTUNITY Administrative Assistant for Unique Job Opportunity Looking for someone dedicated, reliable, long-term, and motivated to perform all administrative duties. Will work one-on-one with owner. Job description: - Computer skills a must: MS Word/Excel, QuickBooks, basic Photoshop skills. Must be able to solve minor computer issues - Digital Photography - Answering phones, setting up appointments, greeting clients - Shipping - Managing website - 40 hours a week. The right person must be very organized, detail oriented, a good problem solver, with excellent written and verbal communication skills. This is a full-time job in downtown Los Angeles. Please send a resume and a brief email telling us about yourself to Salary: $13/hr and parking. Additional opportunity to earn more based on a job welldone.

TEACHER WANTED Wanted responsible teacher to homeschool 10 year old boy. Previous experience required. Please call 818-7081989 or 818-355-3789

EMPLOYMENT Recession-Proof Careers In just 8 months we will train you in a recession-proof career, and help you find an exciting job in: • Pharmacy Technician • Medical Assistant • Medical Office Management • Accounting • Administrative Assistant • Business Management • Computer Graphics & Desktop Publishing • Computer Aided Design & Drafting (Auto Cad) Call Los Angeles ORT Technical Institute 1-800998-2678 LA ORT is Non-Profit organization. Financial Aid, Scholarship and Transportation assistance are available. Mid-Wilshire: 6435 Wilshire BL, Los Angeles CA 90048 Valley: 14519 Sylvan ST, Van 91411 Nuys CA



Advertising Deadline:

January 22, 2010 Circulation Deadline:

January 27, 2010 Please call


323.965.1544 or email us at

Looking for a part time secretary wanted. General office duties. Must be williing to also make marketing sales calls. Please call 310.402.4225

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Dining Guide Listing Please Call 323-965-1544


MEAT Afshan Restaurant RCC 106 W. 9th St. LA, (213) 622-1010

Jeffs Gourmet Kehila 8930 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 858-8590

Bocca Steakhouse RCC 16610 Ventura. Encino, 91436 (818) 905-5855

Kosher Chicks RCC 186081/2Ventura Blvd. Tarzana, 91356 (818) 343-8800

Café Del Mar Dairy/Meat Kehila 12526 Burbank Blvd. N.H. 91607 (818) 487-8171 Chic N Chow Kehila 9301 West Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 274-5595 Chinese and Kabob Kehila 9180 Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 274-4007 Circa RCC 433 N. Fairfax Avenue, LA, 90036 323-653-1941 Cohen’s Restaurant RCC 316 E Pico Blvd # F LA, CA 90015 (213) 742-8888 Delice Bistro Kehila 8581 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 289-1702

Falafel Grill Chabad 5611 Kanan R. Agoura Hills, 91301 (818) 991-8799 Glatt Hut RCC 9303 W. Pico Blvd. 90035 (310) 246-1900


Jan. 15, 2010

Metro Glatt RCC 8975 W. Pico Blvd. 90035 (310) 275-4420

Bibis Warmstone Kehila 8928 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 246-1788

Nagilla Meating Place Kehila 9407 West Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 788-0119

Bramis Pizza

Pita Way RCC 8532 Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 652-5236 Sassis Kehila 15622 Ventura, Encino, 91436 (818) 986-5345 Shanghai Kehila 9401 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 553-0998

Golan RCC 13075 Victory Blvd. N. H, 91606 (818) 763-5344

Haifa Ben Zaken 8717 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 888-7700

Beverly Cafe Elite RCC 7113 Beverly Blvd. LA, 90035 (323) 931-3563

Pico Kosher Deli RCC 8826 West Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 273-9381

Falafel Express Bukstan 5577 Reseda Blvd. Tarzana, 9135 (818) 345-5660

Habayit Bukstan 11921 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90064 (310) 479-5444

Mashu Mashu RCC 12510 Burbank Blvd. 91607 (818)752-ASIA (2742)

Shilohs Kehila 8939 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 858-1652 Subway Kehila 8948 W Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 274-1222 Sunrise RCC 9216 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 786-8282 Temptation Grill Kehila 17547 Ventura B. Encino, 91316 (818) 995-4700

Milky Way Kehila 9108 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 859-0004


Nagilla Pizza Kehila 9411 West Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 788-0111

DAIRY Beverly Elite Cafe RCC 7115 Beverly Blvd. LA, 90036 (323) 936-2861

Pats Kehila 9233 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 205-8705

Elite Cuisine RCC 7119 Beverly Blvd. LA, 90036 (323) 930-1303

Tierra Sur at Herzog Winery 3201 Camino DelSol Oxnard (805) 983-1560

La Glatt RCC 446 Fairfax Ave. LA, 90036 (323) 658-7730

Orange Delight Kehila 13628 Ventura Blvd. SO, 91423 (818) 788-9896

Elat Burger Ben Zaken 9340 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 278-4692

Got Kosher? RCC 8914 W. Pico Blvd. 90035 (310) 858-1920

La Gondola Kehila 9025 Wilshire Blvd. BH, 90211 (310) 247-1239

The Meating Place KCA 30313 Canwood St. AH, 91301 (818) 706-1255

Nana Cafe RCC 1509 S Robertson Blvd. (310) 407-0404 Pico Cafe Kehila 8944 W Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 310-385-9592 Pizza Maven Kehila 140 North La Brea Blvd. 90036 (323) 857-0353


17736 ShermanWay, Reseda 91326

Pizza Nosh Rabbi Ami Markel 30313 Canwood St. A.H. 91301 (818) 991-3000

(818) 342-0611 Circa RCC 8622 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles (310) 854-0592 Cow Jumped Over The Moon


421 N Rodeo Drive, B.H. 90210 (310) 274-4269 Delice Kehila 8583 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 289-6556 Fish Grill Kehila 7226 Beverly Blvd. LA, 90036 (323) 937-7162 12013 Wilshire Blvd. LA, 90025 (310) 479-1800 9618 W. Pico Blvd. 90035 (310) 860-1182 22935 Pacific Coast Highway (310) 456-8585

Pizza Station Kehila 8965 W. Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 276-8708 Pizza World Kehila 365 Fairfax Ave. LA, 90036 (323) 653-2896 Sassis Sushi Kehila 16550 Ventura, Encino, 91436 (818) 783-2727 Shalom Pizza RCC 8715 West Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 271-2255 Unique Cafe Rabbi Aron Simkin 18381 Ventura Blvd. Tarzana (818) 757-3100


Jerusalem Pizza Kehila 17942 Ventura Blvd. Encino, CA 91316

(818) 758-9595 La Brea Bagel Kehilla 7308 Beverly Blvd. LA, 90036 (323) 965-1287 La Pizza Rabbi Furst 12515 Burbank Blvd. N.H, 91607 (818) 760-8198 Milk N Honey RCC 8837 West Pico Blvd LA, 90035 (310) 858-8850

• T O A D V E R T I S E P L E A S E C A L L 323-965-1544 •

Fish In The Village RCC 12450 Burbank Blvd. N.H, 91607 (818) 769-0085 Le Sushi 12524 Burbank Blvd N.H. 91607 (818) 763-6600 SushiKo RCC 9340 West Pico Blvd. LA, 90035 (310) 274-3474

REASONS TO CONSIDER A LIFE SETTLEMENT • Policy has not performed as anticipated • Need for cash flow • Beneficiary is now deceased • Premiums too costly • A change in estate size • A desire to purchase a survivorship policy • Changes in Estate Tax laws

If you are over age 70, we can show you how your life insurance policy might pay off now, while you are alive and still here to enjoy it! What’s more, you may be able to sell your policy for considerably more than its cash surrender value.

Busines Changes: • Buy/Sell funding is no longer required • Business is sold • Changes in deferred compensation benefits • Bankruptcy proceedings

C A S E S T U DY INSURED: Type of Policy: Face Amount: Cash Surender Value: Offer price to policy owner: Reason:

81 year old male Universal Life $5,000,000 $0 $860,000 Premiums of in-force policy were expensive and becoming difficult to afford. The insured no longer needed the policy and sold it for a sum worth approximately twice the policy’s cost basis. C A S E S T U DY

For a free, no obligation consultation and policy appraisal, by phone or in person




Jan. 15, 2010

• T O A D V E R T I S E P L E A S E C A L L 323-965-1544 •

Issue 147  
Issue 147  

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