Thursday, March 29, 2018

Update on computer troubles

Since my last report to you about this latest Windows 10 update problem, I have learned a great deal about problem-solving a software problem. I have made progress into understanding the current problem. But I haven't yet got beyond that.

One of my American readers has given me a lot of time to help create a workable solution for me. He has been terrific. But so far, nothing has worked.

He's still wiling to help. I appreciate that. But I'm going to 'throw in the towel'. I've have enough.

I say, a hearty "thank you!!!" to my American reader.

I will have to buy a new computer. That seems the best solution. Once I do that, I will still need to see if I can retrieve my files from the frozen computer, but when I try to do that, I will at least have a (new) computer to work with. I hope to be back online within 10 days--I believe!

Thanks for your patience.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Need help: once again, it's Windows 10 vs Tuvia Brodie

Some day very soon I shall become a true expert in Windows 10 update issues. It's an honor I do not want.

Based on anecdotal (that is, informal) 'research' completed while under a heightened sense of frustration, I have concluded that, once my involuntary training in this field has finished, I shall join perhaps as many as 400-1000 other abused Windows 10 users who are as frustrated as I am. We will be an exclusive club.

The problem for us poor sods is the fast-becoming horror called the 'Windows 10 update'.  As many of you Windows 10 users know, the 'Windows 10 update' is, typically, an automatic update sent to you. Mostly, it's involuntary. You receive, typically, no choice, just a message that says,'do not turn off computer;  update...'. 

Less than three months ago, I had a major shut-down or freeze-up because of Windows 10 update. I am not an IT specialist. It took me several days to fix. 

I thank everyone who helped me at that time. I am especially grateful for one US reader who got me the solution that worked. 

Now I have a worse problem. This latest problem came with a March 13, 2018 Windows 10 update.

At least, with the late Dec/early January 2018 issue, my computer turned on. I could start it up and do some kind of searching. For this problem, my computer is completely dark. 

Take this morning, for example. Today, I pushed the start-up button, as usual, to start my Dell desktop, Studio XPS computer. What I got for that effort was a black screen. That was more than an hour ago (I'm using my wife's computer right now, which I can borrow only for short periods of time). Right now, my computer screen isn't black. It's now completely bronze, with vertical white lines app 3/8ths of an inch apart, across the entire screen. Lovely.

If what happened last week still holds true, I know what will happen next--maybe: this 'bronzed' screen arrangement will go one for perhaps another 20 minutes (or more). At that point, if I'm lucky, I will get a notice that says the automatic repair of my PC has failed due to an error.

I will have an option to go to 'Advanced options'. There, I find six choices. `Two of them I can't use because I either don't have some kind of 'image disk' that's necessary for a repair; or, because I do not know how to use an option which takes me to a 'Command' something option (it's either a 'C Command' or a 'Command C' choice, I think).

The other four options all fail.

If you are familiar with this stuff, I can report to you I cannot get over to the 'Safe Mode'.

Have any of you got experience with such a problem? 

Can you advise?

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Netanyahu scandals and Israel's democracy

If you’ve been following the most prominent Right-leaning essayists in the Anglo-Israel press, you may have noticed something odd. These elite pro-Israel essayists include, among others, Caroline Glick, Martin Sherman and Isi Leibler. What’s odd is, no one in this Right-leaning group has so far joined the anti-Netanyahu drumbeat that has taken control of Israel's media.

None of these essayists has called upon Netanyahu to resign because accusations of corruption grab press headlines. None call for him to resign because the police investigate him. None demand he resign because he might be indicted.

There are two reasons these writers refuse to join these calls. First, they see Benjamin Netanyahu for what is he; and, second, they understand what he is not.

First, Benjamin Netanyahu is the most competent leader Israel has right now. He has proven repeatedly that—despite his flaws--he can guide this Jewish nation through some of the most dangerous political waters Israel has ever faced.

These writers also understand what Netanyahu is not. He is not one who will ignore the Jew-hate of the Palestinian Authority just to sign a paper marked, ‘peace’. He is not one who believes that the UN and the EU know better than Israel what’s in Israel’s best interest. He doesn’t believe Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas. He bases his policy decisions on these beliefs.

The Left rejects these beliefs. It sees any policies based on such beliefs, ‘criminal’. Therefore, the Left and its media/police supporters will protect Israel against such political ‘crimes’ by removing Netanyahu from office. At a time when Israel is threatened by Iran, Hamas, the Palestinian Authority and the UN, the Left will remove Netanyahu over such critical political issues as bottle deposits, ice cream, cigars and whiskey (see below).

Here are some excerpts from Rightist essayists about their concerns:

--Isi Leibler, "Ever since he was elected to lead the Likud and especially after he became prime minister, the mainstream media – apart from Israel Hayom – has ceaselessly sought to besmirch him and his family. No other democratic leader has been continuously vilified to such an extent. The liberal Israeli media has had more front-page coverage of Netanyahu’s alleged personal failings and vague accusations of corruption than coverage of the turbulent and bloody events in the region that threaten our very survival (“Candidly speaking: dysfunctional politics and disgraceful behaviour", jerusalempost, February 20, 2018).

--Martin Sherman: As [the Left’s] astonished disbelief [that Netanyahu kept winning elections] morphed into visceral rage, a cavalcade of charges was unleashed, admonishing him (and/or his spouse) for irregular use of garden furniture, the employment of an electrician, the proceeds from the sale of recycled bottles; payments to a moving contractor, an inflated ice cream bill (no kidding), the cost of his wife’s coiffure, meals ordered for the official PM residence from restaurants; expenses involving the care of his ailing 96 year old father-in-law…Significantly, several of the investigations into these “grave transgressions” ended with a recommendation by the police to indict. Equally significantly, no indictment ever materialized—usually because of ‘difficulties with the evidence provided’…Indeed, just how ludicrous and uncalled for the relentless witch-hunt appeared to some outside pundits is vividly reflected in a scathing critique of the anti-Netanyahu probes by the ever-incisive Daniel Greenfield, who jeered disparagingly: “Netanyahu’s wife was accused of stealing bottle deposits. ‘Attorney general mulls probe into Sara Netanyahu’s bottle deposits’ isn’t a gag, it’s an actual headline” (“Into the fray: police, press and a politicized Putsch?”, arutzsheva, February 23, 2018).

--Martin Sherman: "...  it is staggering just how petty and vindictive the vicious vendetta against Israel’s longest serving prime minister is—and how utterly irrelevant its alleged incriminations are to both the challenges the nation is facing and to Netanyahu’s fitness, as PM, to meet them...Thus, after over a year of intensive investigations, that spanned several continents and reportedly costing the Israeli taxpayer tens of millions of shekels, all that the police could come up with is that Netanyahu accepted an unseemly amount of smokes and hootch from his long-time buddies—in exchange for which, at the end of the day, they received precisely zilch, nada, zippo!...Really?? (“Into the fray: Coup d'etat?", arutzsheva, February 16, 2018).

Of course, there are many more accusations than “smokes and hootch (whiskey)” just referred to above. But even with these other accusations, Caroline Glick suggests, nothing adds up to jail-time offenses or a reason for Netanyahu to resign.

-Caroline Glick:  “It is easy to get swept away in the flood of prejudicial leaks and biased reporting that have already indicted, tried and pronounced Netanyahu’s guilt. But when you analyze the actual cases being assembled against him, it becomes clear that not only is there nothing there, these probes themselves represent an unprecedented assault on the basic norms of Israel” (“Column One: there is no there here”, jerusalempost,  March 1, 2018).  I suggest to you that the “basic norms” Glick refers to are the democratic ‘rules of law’ Israel is supposed to live by.

Regarding the threat to Israel:

----Martin Sherman: "If Netanyahu is not indicted, or indicted and acquitted, it will be a massive blow to the credibility of the nation’s law enforcement….If he is convicted and forced out of office, many will see this as naked politicization of law enforcement in the country, in effect, a legalistic coup d'├ętat, designed to annul the outcome of elections--and will deal a mortal blow to their faith in the democratic process" (“Coup d'etat”, ibid).

-Caroline Glick: “On their face, these probes are neither supported by sufficient evidence to bring a conviction, nor do they serve the public interest...In Netanyahu’s case, the police’s insufficiently substantiated, arguably specious claims are the subject of around the clock media coverage, fed by constant leaks from police investigators and underpinned by middle-of-the-night arrests of respected citizens. The undisguised goal of this media coverage is to cultivate a sense among the public – without bringing a case to court – that Netanyahu and his friends and advisers are evil crooks who stop at nothing to get their way...If these investigations are successful in forcing Netanyahu from office, he will not be the most significant victim of this abuse. If he goes, every current and future politician will know that at any time and under any circumstances he is liable to find himself and his loved ones destroyed by abusive criminal probes. Operating under such terror, no elected leader will ever move beyond the boundaries dictated for him by politicized police investigators, prosecutors, journalists and judges…In other words, if Netanyahu is forced from office, Israeli democracy will be critically, and possibly irreparably, debilitated” (“Column One: Defending the rule of law”, jerusalempost, February 22, 2018).

If Glick, Sherman and Leibler are correct, Israel's media has a problem. It doesn’t serve the public interest. It serves the forces in Israel that would destroy Israel’s democracy. 

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Springtime in Israel

Even if you've been to Israel, you may still never have seen this Israel (below). You  might want to take a look.

The pictures below come from Nicky Blackburn, "8 unforgettable photographs of spring in Israel", israel21c, March 8, 2018. I haven't posted all the photos from israel21c. Click on the link to see the rest.

As you look at these pictures, please keep in mind that those taken at or near Beersheva and the Negev are true desert photos. What you see here is simply how some of Israel's deserts look in the Spring.  

Sunrise over the fields in southern Israel, near the city of Beersheva. Photo by Edi Israel/FLASH90

A view over Bitronot Ruchama near Kibbutz Ruchama in the western Negev. Photo by Maor Kinsbursky/FLASH90

The Tavor Stream nature reserve. Photo by Anat Hermony/FLASH90

Anemones blossom in the western Negev in southern Israel. Photo by Maor Kinsbursky/FLASH90

Farming in the spring in the lower Galilee. Photo by Gili Yaari/FLASH90

Happy Spring, Israel!

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

AIPAC, Israel--and a Palestinian state?

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) is a very large organization. It attracts thousands to its annual convention.

Its mission is clear. It works to "strengthen, protect and promote the US-Israel relationship" ( aipac, home,  about). It calls itself "America's pro-Israel lobby" (ibid).

On  Sunday, March 4, 2018, Howard Kohr, the chief of this Jewish lobby, stood before an annual AIPAC convention audience estimated at 18,000 and sought to strengthen the US-Israel relationship by calling for the establishment of a Palestinian state (David Rosenberg, "Why is AIPAC pushing Palestinian statehood?", arutzsheva, March 5, 2018). 

Many in Israel have a problem with Jews calling for a Palestinian state. You see, many in Israel aren't sure Palestinians really want a state.

The Palestinian Authority certainly says it wants to establish a state. But does it?

What you are about to see is simple. It's a poster. It asks a simple question. 

This graphic below comes from the blogsite, elderofszyion. It was posted originally there January 19, 2014. Its point is still pertinent. It reminds us of how people behave when they truly want a state.

Please page down:

Posted  by Elder of Ziyon

If the 'Palestinians' really wanted a state, would they make so many demands? 

Monday, March 5, 2018

War and Destiny in Israel: Netanyahu vs the Left

There’s a war unfolding today in Israel, and it has no direct link to Arabs, Palestinians or Muslims (at least, not yet). This is a war of Jew vs Jew. It’s a war of Jewish liberal Leftists in Israel against Israel’s non-Left Jewish Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu.

Until 1977, Israel’s Left ruled Israel with virtually absolute control (Daniel Greenfield, “Netanyahu vs the Left’s Deep state”, frontpagemag, February 22, 2018). Now, it’s been twelve years since it’s won anything important. In politics, twelve years is ‘forever’.
The Left is out of power because of Benjamin Netanyahu (David Wilder, “The leperization of Bibi Netanyahu”, jerusalempost, February 20, 2018). At the ballot box, Netanyahu wins. The Left loses. 

The Left wants its power back. But how can it beat Netanyahu? It believes it can beat him by getting him arrested (Greenfield, ibid).

The Left could succeed—if the police and the media help. They help, eagerly (Caroline Glick, “Defending the rule of law”, jerusalempost, February 22, 2018).

This war against Netanyahu could be the Left’s finest hour—if it wins. But if it loses, this could be its last war. It could end up disgraced. It could lose everything.

This is the ultimate war for who governs. It’s not a fight for votes. It’s an anti-democracy campaign to get rid of a sitting PM outside the ballot-box, using accusations of scandal and criminality. It’s a war where the winner will take all and—metaphorically speaking--the loser will bleed to death.

It’s already been suggested that this war could be the most scandalous political confrontation in Israel’s history (Isi Leibler, “Candidly speaking: dysfunctional politics and disgraceful behaviour”, jerusalempost, February 20, 2018). It’s nasty—and it’s been professionally orchestrated by Left-leaning police and media (Leibler, ibid) who’ve spent millions on this campaign.

 The press hounds Netanyahu with an  all-out attack mentality: he’s corrupt. He must resign. He’s nothing more than a mafia-style, greedy thug. His wife is the same.

The police aren’t much better than the press. Unauthorized leaks from ‘confidential’ police investigations continuously paint Netanyahu as guilty. Almost every leak seems to suggest that the police are only days away from discovering the proverbial smoking gun.

We’re still waiting for that discovery.

The police pursue Netanyahu with the relentlessness of a Sherlock Holmes. But that doggedness is undercut by all the leaks. If the police case is strong, why keep leaking unproven accusations?

There are at least five cases against Netanyahu: Case 1,000 (bribery from wealthy friend), Case 1270 (bribing a judge), Case 2,000 (colluding with a newspaper owner), Case 3,000 (re: German submarine deal) and Case 4,000 (re: Bezeq media company). All of these cases involve bribery or ‘corruption’.

Last week, the press told us the police would grill Netanyahu as a suspect in two cases--3,000 and 4,000.

On March 2, 2018, the police did not do what they said they’d do. They visited Netanyahu. They discussed Case 4,000. But they didn’t question him at all about Case 3,000 (the submarine ‘scandal’). Mind you, we’ve been told that this submarine scandal was the very worst case of graft in Israel’s history (“Lapid says submarine scandal worst graft case in Israeli history”, timesofisrael, July 12, 2017). But, curiously and without explanation, the police didn’t ask him about it, even though they’d said they would.

The press completely ignored this turn of events. In a charged anti-Netanyahu atmosphere, the press wasn’t interested in a potentially pro-Netanyahu occurrence. Instead, the press turned to Case 4,000 and hit Netanyahu hard (“Critics slam Netanyahu as Bezeq graft case gains steam”, timesofisrael, March 3, 2018; “Concrete suspicions, solid evidence against PM in Bezeq case—TV report”, timesofisrael, March 2, 2018; Gidi Weitz, “The evidence that swayed the Israeli Attorney General in Netanyah’s new media case”, haaretz, March 2, 2018; Revital Hovel, “Police question Netanyahu for over five hours; wife also grilled simultaneously”, haaretz, March 2, 2018).

Israel’s Left says it attacks Netanyahu to protect our democratic, liberal Israel. But these attacks reveal evidence of undemocratic behaviour in every segment of the Left’s ‘democratic’ infrastructure—the press, the courts, the police and the rule of law (see Glick, Leibler, Greenfield, above for details).

The Left hates Netanyahu. It wants him gone. But if Glick, Greenfield and others are correct, these Left-driven attacks against Netanyahu don’t protect our democracy. They threaten to destroy our democracy.

The Left also, by the way, hates our Torah. The Left wants ‘democracy’ in Israel, not Judaism. But the Left is ignorant. It ignores the fact that Israel’s Biblical Destiny isn’t built on ‘democracy’. It’s built on our Torah.

If these Leftist attacks fracture our democracy, it could create a political and religious upheaval that could trigger the Jewish Redemption. Is this where these attacks are headed?

Stay tuned. This war advances every day. It’s a war that could end with a bang of Biblical proportions.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Today is Purim. Here is a Purim story

(last update: March 5,  2018)

Today, March 1, 2018,  is the Jewish holiday of Purim. This is the day each year (the 14th of the Hebrew month, Adar) Jews around the world celebrate how the Jewish people in ancient Persia (modern Iran--or, alternatively, modern Iraq-Iran) were saved from the genocidal scheme of the wicked Haman  (the Persian king's chief advisor). Haman wanted to kill, annihilate and destroy the Jews--including all the men, women and children. The king of Persia gave him permission to do that. 

But, through the efforts of a woman we call,  Queen Esther, Haman failed. Everything he wanted to do to the Jews was done to him and his family.

Purim is a happy day. It is a day when, in ancient Persia, fear and trembling were transformed into happiness and rejoicing.

To celebrate, each year on this Hebrew date, we read Meggilat Esther in public --the story of how Queen Esther saved us all. As part of this celebration, we dress up in costumes. We drink. We feast. We distribute gifts of food to our friends. We give food to the poor. 

In Israel--and, often, elsewhere in the world--we hold parades down a main street filled with children in costume. Many of these parades showcase giant parade floats depicting the participants of the Purim story--the beautiful Esther, the bad king Ahashverus, the wicked Haman and the wise Mordechai. It is a fun-filled family event.

We are called upon to be merry. Telling jokes isn't typically part of a family's Purim celebration. But, in the Purim spirit, jokes do get told.

I have found a joke for your merriment. I'm calling this joke a 'story' because it's about the old Soviet Union, which wasn't very kind to Jews. Since I have many readers who come to my blog from Russia--and since I live in a community here in Israel that has a strong Russian citizenry--I tell this Purim story to remind us all that the fears Jews of ancient Persia  suffered in our Purim story were felt every day for many Jews in the old Soviet regime. 

I found this Purim 'story' at the blogsite, elderzyion. It was posted there yesterday, February 28,  2018, under the title, "An oldie but goodie (Purim joke)".

If you live in Russia, or know about Jewish history in the old Soviet Union, you will appreciate this joke. In fact, it might be easy enough to understand even if you know knowing about Jewish life in the old Soviet Union. Indeed, the joke's punch-line reveals a reality Jews have lived with for millennia:

In the 1970's, a Russian school inspector is questioning the children. He points to one of the boys and says, "Who is your father?" 

The boy replies, "The Soviet Union." 

He then asks, "Who is your mother?" 

"The communist party," came the reply. 

"And what do you want to be when you grow up?" 

"I want to be a Stankhanovite worker for the glory of the state and the party." 

The inspector then points to one of the girls and asks, "Who is your father?" 

The girl answers, "The Soviet Union." 

"Who is your mother?"

"The communist party." 

"And what do you want to be when you grow up?" 

"A heroine of the Soviet Union raising lots of children for the state and party." 

The inspector looks round and sees a Jewish boy tucked away at the back trying to look inconspicuous. He points and says, "What's your name?" 

The boy replies, "Mendel Abramovitch." 

"Who is your father?" 

"The Soviet Union." 

"Who is your mother?" 

"The communist party." 

"And what do you want to be when you grow up?" 

Mendel replies, "An orphan."


Our Purim story did not, apparently, occur in a Soviet-like environment. Except for Haman, the Jews back then in Persia might have felt relatively safe and comfortable--until Haman. 

Jewish history is filled with dangers to Jews--and few places were more dangerous than the old Soviet regime. 

Today, many Jews from that old regime are in Israel. In a sense, they have been redeemed just like (perhaps) the Jews of ancient Persia were saved from Haman.

 Happy Purim!!!!