Conservative Rabbis Release Report: Confirms Much Of The Forward’s Reporting On Rubashkin Worker Abuses; C-Rabbis To Set Up Own “Ethical” Supervision

Nathaniel Popper of the Forward writes that the Conservative rabbis report on Rubashkin’s (AgriProcessors’) worker abuses has been released:

The Conservative movement put together a commission to investigate the Forward’s allegations and made three trips to the plant. The report that came out of these visits said that the commission came across a number of concerns in speaking with workers and management.

The list of problems included: “Inadequate or non-existent worker safety training”; “concern about unsafe chemical use,” and “unclean and unsafe lunchroom conditions.”

Several members of the Conservative movement’s commission also visited the Empire Kosher Poulty plant in Pennsylvania, where they found “working conditions, safety conditions and general worker welfare and community relations not to be issues of concern.”

Other issues, like pay shorting, can only be confirmed by a criminal investigation. This may be happening as part of a wider Justice Department investigation into price fixing in the kosher meat industry. Sources claim Rubashkin is a target of that investigation.

The Conservative rabbis have also announced a “tsedek hekhsher,” or a justice certification, that would ensure kosher food producers “have met a set of standards that determine the social responsibility of kosher food producers, particularly in the area of workers rights.”

The head of the Conservative movement commission, Rabbi Morris Allen, said that any certification system would be a supplement — not a replacement — for current kosher supervision. Allen said the additional level of scrutiny is necessary for the religious bona-fides of the industry.

“We have reached a point where it not sufficient to teach and promote the whys of keeping kosher,” Allen said. “It is necessary to ensure we talk about how our kosher food is produced.”

Here is what the OU’s Rabbi Menachem Genack says about this:

“There are lots of social issues that are really important that could be subsumed under some sort of super certification,” Genack said. “But if we just move away from strict concerns about kashruth — if we talk about what they pay workers — these kinds of standards can be less than 100% clear.”

After rolling on the floor convulsed in laughter, my only response to this innane statement by Rabbi Genack is to note that ripping the throats out of live animals with a meat hook – a process Rabbi Genack defended as 100% kosher – is far from 100% clearly kosher, yet the OU sanctioned it. Why? Money, the same reason they will not deal with Rubashkin’s abuses or the abuses on the farming side of the meat industry. Making sure employees of kosher plants and the animals they slaughter are both (not to equate the two) treated humanely will raise the cost of kosher meat, which will drop sales, which will reduce the value of the OU’s supervision, which will reduce the amount of money the OU gets to provide that supervision. Rabbi Genack himself says:

Genack also said that a major priority for the Orthodox Union was to make kosher food more widely available. “For us to set up a new amorphous standard in certain plants,” Genack said, “parts of the kosher industry are very fragile and could be adversely affected by this.”

In other words, your Orthodox rabbis are willing to ignore tzaar ba’alei hayyim law and all the halakhot surrounding the treatment of employees so you can buy (relatively) cheap kosher beef.

Orthodox Jews, understand this well. These are your rabbis. Run away from them.

Advertisements

52 Comments

Filed under Jewish Leadership, Kosher Business?, Kosher Meat Scandal, Rubashkin Worker Abuse

52 responses to “Conservative Rabbis Release Report: Confirms Much Of The Forward’s Reporting On Rubashkin Worker Abuses; C-Rabbis To Set Up Own “Ethical” Supervision

  1. Some Guy with an Idea...

    Any new info in the DOJ’s Kosher meat probe?

  2. This is actually good news I think. Competition would certainly be more helpful. Chances are the Conservative kashrut certification would become known for being more ethical, at least regarding the workers. It might have even undermined the penetration of OU kosher food consumed by the vastly-more-plentiful Conservative constituency. Of course that effect would have been dampened by the comparatively small quantity of kashrut-observant Conservative Jews. But such an undermining would have forced OU kosher meat companies to compete either on price or ethics. If they decided to compete on ethics, it would have been good all around. If they had decided to compete on price, then OU certification would have become a joke.

    As a supplement, the effect will be weaker. Conservative Jews will prefer kosher meat with the mark if the rabbinate makes a push for acceptance and awareness of the mark. The Orthodox robotinate–I mean rabbinate–will make various claims about the unimportance of standards besides those in Shulchan Aruch, as they always do, eliding facts such as the pain of hook-in-throat slaughter.

    If an effort were made to introduce the Conservative ethical mark to organic/ethical food purchasers in the secular marketplace, a larger market could make the Conservative ethical mark more profitable for kosher meat vendors. Unfortunately, ethical food purchasers are frequently vegetarian or vegan also, limiting the size of the market. Then again, a few percent of the organic food market could be a substantial increase to the kosher marketplace.

    I wouldn’t expect the Conservative authorities to attempt to supplant the OU mark, partly because the OU mark has such penetration and a general lack of patience from non-Jewish vendors, but perhaps more because of a desire of the Conservative rabbinate to appear at every possible chance to be a peer of the Orthodoxy in most matters rather than a competitor. So a supplemental mark might be the best that can be arranged.

    It’s all about how the cards are played and how serious the players are.

  3. Anonymous

    You will be responsible before G-d for every Jew you push away from being religious with your one sided attacks on Orthodox judaism. Think about that.

  4. Don’t worry. God hates liars, cheats and frauds. And that is today’s Orthodox Judaism in nutshell.

  5. Anonymous

    oh, so i guess youre saying G-d hates orthodox Jews. Right…

  6. Nigritude Ultramarine

    Genack said, “parts of the kosher industry are very fragile and could be adversely affected by this.”

    I know what you mean. We wouldn’t want workers to expect decent treatment from “frum” businesses.

  7. Nigritude Ultramarine

    oh, so i guess youre saying G-d hates orthodox Jews. Right…

    I think God loves “erliche” Jews more.

  8. Scam Alert

    i will go out of my way to avoid any brand with a conservative seal. they dont keep kashrus anyway so this will have no effect.

  9. DK

    I hate to bring up the issue of chicken being pareve, but this seems like as good an opportunity as when I usually bring it up.

  10. anon

    Reminds me of the time I went into Netzach butchers in Brooklyn. I bought chicken livers and was quite shocked to find out that I had purchased fowl livers. Called the Rabbis and was told that they only gave supervision that it was kosher and not how it was labeled. Fowl livers vs. chicken livers, big deal, but the taste was not was expected and felt disappointed that veracity was not part of the hashgocha

  11. anon

    Reminds me of the time I went into Netzach butchers in Brooklyn. I bought chicken livers and was quite shocked to find out that I had purchased fowl livers. Called the Rabbis and was told that they only gave supervision that it was kosher and not how it was labeled. Fowl livers vs. chicken livers, big deal, but the taste was not was expected and felt disappointed that veracity was not part of the hashgocha

  12. Yochanan Lavie

    “i will go out of my way to avoid any brand with a conservative seal. they dont keep kashrus anyway so this will have no effect.”

    What about the oval-CRC, which is Satmar? They are not as bad as NK, but they are like NK-lite. (Rabbi Meyer Rabinowitz of JTS proposed boycotting non-Zionist hechshers, but was voted down. His rationale was that they have effectively abandoned the Jewish people. BTW, I think he quit JTS over the Gay issue.)

    Anyhow, while Scam Alert has a point about COnservative’s leneincy towards halacha, in today’s world of multiple gang hechshers, how does a conservative label negate the orthodox label if it also has, say, the OU?

  13. Elizabeth

    Rabbi Allen is a VEGETARIAN. Doesn’t his being the head this commission seem like he will have more fuel to push his own vegetarian agenda?

  14. Elizabeth

    Rabbi Allen is a VEGETARIAN. Doesn’t his being the head this commission seem like he will have more fuel to push his own vegetarian agenda?

  15. Garnel Ironheart

    I think everyone is missing something is this whole debate. First of all, kashrus has nothing to do with how workers are treated, how clean their lunchroom is and what’s they’re paid. It simply relates to how the food is prepared. I’m not justifying Rubashkin’s methods but until someone can point out the reference in Shulchan Aruch that they’re violating, statements that go against hechshering authorities can be safely ignored. You may not like how the animal is treated, certainly the description turns my stomach, but then the reason to avoid the meat isn’t based on kashrut, but on personal ethics. Secondly, a Conservative hechsher would be a joke from the get go. 95% of Conservatives don’t keep kosher. Are they now suddenly, out of some hitherto dormant sense of loyalty, going to start looking for their own symbol? And so what? If it has nothing to do with kashrut but rather the ethics of how a plant is run, what does it have to do with how kosher the food is? Technically, a humane non-kosher plant might also apply for the hechsher.

  16. Elizabeth

    If the Conservatives ran a plant, they wouldn’t produce anything. They would be spending too much time building houses for the illegal immigrants (working for them) that they would be protecting. Teaching them to read and giving them life skills, they would never be working. Not to mention the fact that they would probably be given unlimited sick time and free health care in which to use while they were using that sick time.

    And who would be their schochets? The orthodox! Because conservative Jews are not taught to want to be anything but doctors or lawyers (for liberal causes) or teachers in poverty stricken urban areas. And if they did produce a schochet, she would be a lesbian who doubles as a cantor.

  17. Elizabeth

    If the Conservatives ran a plant, they wouldn’t produce anything. They would be spending too much time building houses for the illegal immigrants (working for them) that they would be protecting. Teaching them to read and giving them life skills, they would never be working. Not to mention the fact that they would probably be given unlimited sick time and free health care in which to use while they were using that sick time.

    And who would be their schochets? The orthodox! Because conservative Jews are not taught to want to be anything but doctors or lawyers (for liberal causes) or teachers in poverty stricken urban areas. And if they did produce a schochet, she would be a lesbian who doubles as a cantor.

  18. C-G

    What a riot- so many of you telling me- an otherwise halachic Jew who’s been pidgeon-holed into the Conservative movement because of the moral bankruptcy I’ve observed in orthodoxy – what I think and do.

    I keep kosher. Not “conservative” kosher, not “ethical” kosher. Just plain old real, ol’ fashioned Kosher.

    That said, I make every attempt to not purchase or consume food produced by (“frum”) people who do not pay their employees fairly (as Torah says they shouldn’t, BTW) and treat them deplorably (as Torah says they shouldn’t). And if you’re going to consider yourself a Torah-practicing halachic Jew, neither should you. And if it takes a bunch of Conservative rabbis to point out this obvious fact, so be it.

    As Shamarya is so fond of saying, now go learn.

  19. C-G

    What a riot- so many of you telling me- an otherwise halachic Jew who’s been pidgeon-holed into the Conservative movement because of the moral bankruptcy I’ve observed in orthodoxy – what I think and do.

    I keep kosher. Not “conservative” kosher, not “ethical” kosher. Just plain old real, ol’ fashioned Kosher.

    That said, I make every attempt to not purchase or consume food produced by (“frum”) people who do not pay their employees fairly (as Torah says they shouldn’t, BTW) and treat them deplorably (as Torah says they shouldn’t). And if you’re going to consider yourself a Torah-practicing halachic Jew, neither should you. And if it takes a bunch of Conservative rabbis to point out this obvious fact, so be it.

    As Shamarya is so fond of saying, now go learn.

  20. Rostoff Arian

    CG- Shmarya is nothing if not a strict constructionist. Where exectly does the Torah state that one must pay his workers fairly? (BTW, what is fairly?) And what deplorable behavior going on at the slaughter house are you referring to that the Torah prohibits?

  21. C-G

    Providing unsafe working conditions is clearly exploitation of workers who are powerless to change their surroundings. Similarly, “shorting” workers on their pay (addressed in previous months) is exploitative.

    From Ki Teitzei:

    “You shall not abuse a needy and destitute laborer, whether a fellow countryman or a stranger in one of the communities of your land. You must pay him his wages on the same day, before the sun sets, for he is needy and urgently depends on it; else he will cry to the Lord against you and you will incur guilt.”

    Why such an outcry against doing what’s right? I hate having to sound like a union activist in order to prove what seems to be a simple point. Has everyone’s common sense flown out the window?

    BTW, RA- “strict constructionist”? Is that a fancy name for “someone who does not agree with me and tries to support his/her ideas with proof that I’m too set in my ways to even consider”? Maybe I’m a “strict constructionist”, too.

    David Kelsey- which came first, the pareve chicken or the pareve egg?

  22. C-G

    Providing unsafe working conditions is clearly exploitation of workers who are powerless to change their surroundings. Similarly, “shorting” workers on their pay (addressed in previous months) is exploitative.

    From Ki Teitzei:

    “You shall not abuse a needy and destitute laborer, whether a fellow countryman or a stranger in one of the communities of your land. You must pay him his wages on the same day, before the sun sets, for he is needy and urgently depends on it; else he will cry to the Lord against you and you will incur guilt.”

    Why such an outcry against doing what’s right? I hate having to sound like a union activist in order to prove what seems to be a simple point. Has everyone’s common sense flown out the window?

    BTW, RA- “strict constructionist”? Is that a fancy name for “someone who does not agree with me and tries to support his/her ideas with proof that I’m too set in my ways to even consider”? Maybe I’m a “strict constructionist”, too.

    David Kelsey- which came first, the pareve chicken or the pareve egg?

  23. D

    “Providing unsafe working conditions is clearly exploitation of workers who are powerless to change their surroundings.”

    They are plenty powerful to change their surroundings. They can get a job elsewhere. That does not absolve employers in any way. However, this oft-repeated “powerless” meme is simply false.

    “Providing unsafe working conditions…” does not follow from the portion of Ki Teitzei you quote. That simply says pay what you owe your workers without any delays, nothing more. AFA what is “fair” that is a very relative quantity and you will be very hard pressed to derive it from simple prooftext reading.

    Of course, what is missing in this whole discussion is the fact that meat processing, in general, is a very low-margin business. I.E., the difference between profit and loss is often in pennies/pound. Accordingly, increases in direct and indirect labor costs will either immediately impact the retail price or will drive a producer out of business. The most successful producers are going to be those that keep those costs down. That’s it! That’s just reality, folks, and it doesn’t give a flying flip about our perceptions of “justice”.

    Personally, I hope that some “smart” processing technologies can be developed that handle most of the dangerous jobs on the line via automation. These have been effectively implemented in poultry processing in the past. Meat is different, however, because of the large variations in the size and shape of animals, making this challenge far more difficult.

  24. D

    “Providing unsafe working conditions is clearly exploitation of workers who are powerless to change their surroundings.”

    They are plenty powerful to change their surroundings. They can get a job elsewhere. That does not absolve employers in any way. However, this oft-repeated “powerless” meme is simply false.

    “Providing unsafe working conditions…” does not follow from the portion of Ki Teitzei you quote. That simply says pay what you owe your workers without any delays, nothing more. AFA what is “fair” that is a very relative quantity and you will be very hard pressed to derive it from simple prooftext reading.

    Of course, what is missing in this whole discussion is the fact that meat processing, in general, is a very low-margin business. I.E., the difference between profit and loss is often in pennies/pound. Accordingly, increases in direct and indirect labor costs will either immediately impact the retail price or will drive a producer out of business. The most successful producers are going to be those that keep those costs down. That’s it! That’s just reality, folks, and it doesn’t give a flying flip about our perceptions of “justice”.

    Personally, I hope that some “smart” processing technologies can be developed that handle most of the dangerous jobs on the line via automation. These have been effectively implemented in poultry processing in the past. Meat is different, however, because of the large variations in the size and shape of animals, making this challenge far more difficult.

  25. Rostoff Arien

    CG- Don’t worry-you are no constructionist. Shmarya demands strict adherence to text. You are quite the reverse. The issues you bring up deal with whether Agriprocessor is a good corporate citizen but has nothing to do with the torah.

  26. Rostoff Arien

    CG- Don’t worry-you are no constructionist. Shmarya demands strict adherence to text. You are quite the reverse. The issues you bring up deal with whether Agriprocessor is a good corporate citizen but has nothing to do with the torah.

  27. Neo-Conservaguy

    Who can be so focused upon the pshat of the mikra – and ignore the later oral teachings and commentaries – that they miss the magnificent ethical concepts that are the macro level meaning of the sacred text? To attempt to separate the required ethical behavior that directly relates to both kashruth and employer-worker relationships from the setting of Postville shows a remarkable ability to miss the forest for the trees.

    “If the Conservatives ran a plant… [snip] …And if they did produce a schochet, she would be a lesbian who doubles as a cantor.”

    If personal experience is any indicator, from what I’ve seen, she would more skilled than many of her male Orthodox colleagues, and far more humble.

  28. Neo-Conservaguy

    Who can be so focused upon the pshat of the mikra – and ignore the later oral teachings and commentaries – that they miss the magnificent ethical concepts that are the macro level meaning of the sacred text? To attempt to separate the required ethical behavior that directly relates to both kashruth and employer-worker relationships from the setting of Postville shows a remarkable ability to miss the forest for the trees.

    “If the Conservatives ran a plant… [snip] …And if they did produce a schochet, she would be a lesbian who doubles as a cantor.”

    If personal experience is any indicator, from what I’ve seen, she would more skilled than many of her male Orthodox colleagues, and far more humble.

  29. C-G

    “They are plenty powerful to change their surroundings. They can get a job elsewhere. That does not absolve employers in any way. However, this oft-repeated “powerless” meme is simply false.”

    Okay, so we’ve got a revolving door solution, where the people who ultimately end up the jobs are those who are unhireable to any other employer, since everyone else who can leave, has. …Just who I want processing my kosher meat, how ’bout you?

    “The most successful producers are going to be those that keep those costs down.”

    And the poor shmucks who keep paying the least they can for it, get what they deserve- if not in this life, then in what comes after. I’m good with that.

    “Accordingly, increases in direct and indirect labor costs will either immediately impact the retail price or will drive a producer out of business.”

    And the latest calls for increased supervision in light of the Monsey debacle aren’t going to increase the cost? Look, Jews want meat so badly, they’re willing to pay whatever the price (see Beha’aloscha for an extreme example). Even if Agriprocessors raised their prices by 50%, they’d still have a captive market that would keep on buying (and buying and buying). And yes, I understand that the profit margin in beef cattle is ridiculously low. The New York Times magazine did a story about that a couple of years ago, I recall.

    RA- My concern is not that Agriprocessors is a good corporate citizen, per se. I care about how they represent themselves as a provider of kosher meat within halachic constraints (and that they’re a good corporate citizen, too, actually). I’m confident that I’m taking issue with the religious aspect and not merely the civil implications. Maybe you’re missing a few columns of your Torah. You should probably check.

  30. C-G

    “They are plenty powerful to change their surroundings. They can get a job elsewhere. That does not absolve employers in any way. However, this oft-repeated “powerless” meme is simply false.”

    Okay, so we’ve got a revolving door solution, where the people who ultimately end up the jobs are those who are unhireable to any other employer, since everyone else who can leave, has. …Just who I want processing my kosher meat, how ’bout you?

    “The most successful producers are going to be those that keep those costs down.”

    And the poor shmucks who keep paying the least they can for it, get what they deserve- if not in this life, then in what comes after. I’m good with that.

    “Accordingly, increases in direct and indirect labor costs will either immediately impact the retail price or will drive a producer out of business.”

    And the latest calls for increased supervision in light of the Monsey debacle aren’t going to increase the cost? Look, Jews want meat so badly, they’re willing to pay whatever the price (see Beha’aloscha for an extreme example). Even if Agriprocessors raised their prices by 50%, they’d still have a captive market that would keep on buying (and buying and buying). And yes, I understand that the profit margin in beef cattle is ridiculously low. The New York Times magazine did a story about that a couple of years ago, I recall.

    RA- My concern is not that Agriprocessors is a good corporate citizen, per se. I care about how they represent themselves as a provider of kosher meat within halachic constraints (and that they’re a good corporate citizen, too, actually). I’m confident that I’m taking issue with the religious aspect and not merely the civil implications. Maybe you’re missing a few columns of your Torah. You should probably check.

  31. D

    the people who ultimately end up the jobs are those who are unhireable to any other employer, since everyone else who can leave, has. …Just who I want processing my kosher meat, how ’bout you?

    Hence my desire to see more automation in processing. The initial startup costs are high but machines do not walk out before the end of the “probationary” period and require nothing of plant management other than fuel, periodic maintenance and repairs.

    And the latest calls for increased supervision in light of the Monsey debacle aren’t going to increase the cost?

    Yes it will…and will drive more Monsey-type yidden to buy pre-packed Aarons, Meal-Mart and Empire at Pathmark instead of relying on a broken hashgachah chain. Vos s’iz pasht nisht heretofore. Disclosure, I have already been doing so for a long time where I live (outside the NYC area).

    And the poor shmucks who keep paying the least they can for it, get what they deserve- if not in this life, then in what comes after….Jews want meat so badly, they’re willing to pay whatever the price (see Beha’aloscha for an extreme example

    Which is it? Are we cheapskates or spendthrifts on the matter? Make up your mind. Anyways, I thought you C-types didn’t believe in “after”; documentary hypothesis and all that. I guess you do when it is convenient. :o)

  32. D

    the people who ultimately end up the jobs are those who are unhireable to any other employer, since everyone else who can leave, has. …Just who I want processing my kosher meat, how ’bout you?

    Hence my desire to see more automation in processing. The initial startup costs are high but machines do not walk out before the end of the “probationary” period and require nothing of plant management other than fuel, periodic maintenance and repairs.

    And the latest calls for increased supervision in light of the Monsey debacle aren’t going to increase the cost?

    Yes it will…and will drive more Monsey-type yidden to buy pre-packed Aarons, Meal-Mart and Empire at Pathmark instead of relying on a broken hashgachah chain. Vos s’iz pasht nisht heretofore. Disclosure, I have already been doing so for a long time where I live (outside the NYC area).

    And the poor shmucks who keep paying the least they can for it, get what they deserve- if not in this life, then in what comes after….Jews want meat so badly, they’re willing to pay whatever the price (see Beha’aloscha for an extreme example

    Which is it? Are we cheapskates or spendthrifts on the matter? Make up your mind. Anyways, I thought you C-types didn’t believe in “after”; documentary hypothesis and all that. I guess you do when it is convenient. :o)

  33. Rostoff Arien

    CG – To quote Cool Hand Luke, “what we have here is a failure to communicate.” I wonder whether you view openly gay conservative rabbis with the same disdain for their disregard for the torah and their consequent moral bankruptcy.
    NC – I couldn’t agree with you more. Just decide, are you relying on the oral tradition or not. There should be some consistency.

  34. Rostoff Arien

    CG – To quote Cool Hand Luke, “what we have here is a failure to communicate.” I wonder whether you view openly gay conservative rabbis with the same disdain for their disregard for the torah and their consequent moral bankruptcy.
    NC – I couldn’t agree with you more. Just decide, are you relying on the oral tradition or not. There should be some consistency.

  35. Neo-Conservaguy

    “I couldn’t agree with you more. Just decide, are you relying on the oral tradition or not. There should be some consistency.”

    Why? Sometimes the halacha follows the mikra directly, and other times it takes rather fascinating alternative routes. The ethical concepts, however, are to be found across all of the texts, from TaNaKH through modern commentary.

    How can anyone that subscribes to any approach to Judaism, from Karaite to Rabbinic, read into the text or commentaries permission to ignore the solid ethical concepts of animal treatment and worker treatment? It’s funny how Orthodox Jews loves to accuse more liberal movements of zig-zagging through the text to suite their needs, while here we have some ostensibly Orthodox Jews doing exactly that to justify staggering cruelty to animals as well as workers. The meat from Postville is treif on so many levels it’s scary.

  36. C-G

    “To quote Cool Hand Luke, “what we have here is a failure to communicate.” I wonder whether you view openly gay conservative rabbis with the same disdain for their disregard for the torah and their consequent moral bankruptcy.”

    We had this discussion previously and I prefer not to rehash it here. However, your linking gay rabbis and moral bankruptcy indicates to me that we do, indeed, have here a failure to communicate. I do not speak your language nor do I wish to.

  37. C-G

    “To quote Cool Hand Luke, “what we have here is a failure to communicate.” I wonder whether you view openly gay conservative rabbis with the same disdain for their disregard for the torah and their consequent moral bankruptcy.”

    We had this discussion previously and I prefer not to rehash it here. However, your linking gay rabbis and moral bankruptcy indicates to me that we do, indeed, have here a failure to communicate. I do not speak your language nor do I wish to.

  38. C-G: what we have here is exactly what I predicted: Orthodox Jews eager to hate everything and everyone for absolutely any reason.

    There may be a lot of hypocrisy in the Conservative movement, but at least there isn’t uncontrollable, insane hubris.

  39. C-G: what we have here is exactly what I predicted: Orthodox Jews eager to hate everything and everyone for absolutely any reason.

    There may be a lot of hypocrisy in the Conservative movement, but at least there isn’t uncontrollable, insane hubris.

  40. Rostoff Arien

    CG and DL, you again miss the obvious. I couldn’t care less whether ALL conservative rabbis are openly gay-(hey some of my best friends are gay). however, to read CG cherrypicking which torah violations are a moral outrage and which are not is just absurd. This is not about conservative hypocricy but rather CG’s hypocricy and exposing the entire purpose of his posts; i.e. to spew venom-

    Exhibit A
    That said, I make every attempt to not purchase or consume food produced by (“frum”) people who do not pay their employees fairly (as Torah says they shouldn’t, BTW) and treat them deplorably (as Torah says they shouldn’t). And if you’re going to consider yourself a Torah-practicing halachic Jew, neither should you.

    thanx 4 your kind thoughts jew-lover!

  41. Rostoff Arien

    CG and DL, you again miss the obvious. I couldn’t care less whether ALL conservative rabbis are openly gay-(hey some of my best friends are gay). however, to read CG cherrypicking which torah violations are a moral outrage and which are not is just absurd. This is not about conservative hypocricy but rather CG’s hypocricy and exposing the entire purpose of his posts; i.e. to spew venom-

    Exhibit A
    That said, I make every attempt to not purchase or consume food produced by (“frum”) people who do not pay their employees fairly (as Torah says they shouldn’t, BTW) and treat them deplorably (as Torah says they shouldn’t). And if you’re going to consider yourself a Torah-practicing halachic Jew, neither should you.

    thanx 4 your kind thoughts jew-lover!

  42. Stephen Mendelsohn

    BS”D

    The Conservative rabbis also ought to go to South America and investigate the conditions at the AgriProcessors and Alle plants down there, as some of that meat is imported into the US. One suspects that working conditions, like animal welfare, are even worse in South America.

  43. Stephen Mendelsohn

    BS”D

    The Conservative rabbis also ought to go to South America and investigate the conditions at the AgriProcessors and Alle plants down there, as some of that meat is imported into the US. One suspects that working conditions, like animal welfare, are even worse in South America.

  44. I fail to understand how it is not a Torah issue how workers are treated. It’s not only an issue of whether someone is paid on time, but on whether they are treated in a respectful way. What part of Leviticus 19 don’t you understand? Now I understand what “naval b’rshut haTorah” is!

  45. Neo-Conservaguy

    “The Conservative rabbis also ought to go to South America and investigate the conditions at the AgriProcessors and Alle plants down there, as some of that meat is imported into the US. One suspects that working conditions, like animal welfare, are even worse in South America.”

    100% agreement. Given that the The Seminario Rabinico Latinamericano (Buenos Aires, Argentina) is associated with JTS, they should already have rabbis “in the area” who could check on these plants.

  46. Neo-Conservaguy

    “The Conservative rabbis also ought to go to South America and investigate the conditions at the AgriProcessors and Alle plants down there, as some of that meat is imported into the US. One suspects that working conditions, like animal welfare, are even worse in South America.”

    100% agreement. Given that the The Seminario Rabinico Latinamericano (Buenos Aires, Argentina) is associated with JTS, they should already have rabbis “in the area” who could check on these plants.

  47. Stephen Mendelsohn

    BS”D

    As for R’ Genack’s comments about imposing more demands on kosher food producers, why is it that the OU increasingly holds to every haredi ritual chumra (bug checking in onions, bishul akum prohibition on chummus and tehina, ad nauseum) and does not consider these ritual demands to be unbearable? Why are only ethical halachot relating to food production too burdensome for the OU here?

  48. Stephen Mendelsohn

    BS”D

    As for R’ Genack’s comments about imposing more demands on kosher food producers, why is it that the OU increasingly holds to every haredi ritual chumra (bug checking in onions, bishul akum prohibition on chummus and tehina, ad nauseum) and does not consider these ritual demands to be unbearable? Why are only ethical halachot relating to food production too burdensome for the OU here?

  49. yudel shain

    RUBASHKIN MOTTO:

    Our job is to give people not what they want, but what we decide they ought to have, WE THAT WITH LABELS! you can get whatever label you want “the meat is all the same”.

    Rubashkin / Supreme has a brilliant business strategy to have the Rav Hamachshir also be a “salesman” for the meat. It was a wise decision as they are very good salesmen.

    Conflict of interest was never a concern for a “Used car salesmen” (We all know we can have full faith & trust in a used car salesman, Right?

    What is surprising, is that a Dayan from England currently residing in Boro Park (for the past 15 years +-) is also a salesman even though he isn’t a Rav Hamachshir of Rubashkin / Supreme (not withstanding the fact that he issued a letter of approval) .

  50. yudel shain

    RUBASHKIN MOTTO:

    Our job is to give people not what they want, but what we decide they ought to have, WE THAT WITH LABELS! you can get whatever label you want “the meat is all the same”.

    Rubashkin / Supreme has a brilliant business strategy to have the Rav Hamachshir also be a “salesman” for the meat. It was a wise decision as they are very good salesmen.

    Conflict of interest was never a concern for a “Used car salesmen” (We all know we can have full faith & trust in a used car salesman, Right?

    What is surprising, is that a Dayan from England currently residing in Boro Park (for the past 15 years +-) is also a salesman even though he isn’t a Rav Hamachshir of Rubashkin / Supreme (not withstanding the fact that he issued a letter of approval) .

  51. yudel shain

    The Rubashkin meat operation is 85% a non-kosher operation.
    Rubashkin earns most of his money from the non-kosher operation,but earns more per pound on the kosher-that is the incentive to label as much as possible “kosher”.

    The Rubashkin people will lie, will switch labels, let the Goim control the labels,etc.

    The on site Rav Hamachshir that was previously the Rav Hamachshir at Emire was forced out of Empire as he was found on numerous occassions to be in the catagory of “…Neveilah mitachas yodoi” which he is not permitted to ever be employeed in the Schechita” field, yet he is the on-site Rav Hamachshir”.

    Why other kashrus certifiers do not want to use M.M.W. products ’cause he was caught numerous times that “He will intentionaly mislead the truth seekers” (I hope you know what that means without me “esplaining it”.

    In Kashrus such an individual is unreliable “as you don’t know what is true & what isn’t”.

  52. yudel shain

    The Rubashkin meat operation is 85% a non-kosher operation.
    Rubashkin earns most of his money from the non-kosher operation,but earns more per pound on the kosher-that is the incentive to label as much as possible “kosher”.

    The Rubashkin people will lie, will switch labels, let the Goim control the labels,etc.

    The on site Rav Hamachshir that was previously the Rav Hamachshir at Emire was forced out of Empire as he was found on numerous occassions to be in the catagory of “…Neveilah mitachas yodoi” which he is not permitted to ever be employeed in the Schechita” field, yet he is the on-site Rav Hamachshir”.

    Why other kashrus certifiers do not want to use M.M.W. products ’cause he was caught numerous times that “He will intentionaly mislead the truth seekers” (I hope you know what that means without me “esplaining it”.

    In Kashrus such an individual is unreliable “as you don’t know what is true & what isn’t”.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s