Nordau Street, Tel Aviv

The last shabbat before the new year.

This is a good time to reflect on things, even if the world around us keeps charging forward.

Maybe this week was the week when the US fell from empire to nation. It’s as if we’re Britain after WWII – our time is not quite passed, but it feels as if there are younger and stronger players out there and we may not have what it takes to compete.

In Israel, the paucity of leadership is all too evident. Livni may be better than Mofaz who is a key player in the decline of the IDF over the past several years, but she isn’t special either. There is nobody special in a position to lead Israel because only the survivors get to play and surviving doesn’t involve the same skills as leading and often requires the very cynicism that undermines trust in that individual. Bonus points for Israel that a woman is once again chosen to lead.

Obama vs. McCain feels old already. Neither appears to have the full suit of capabilities and qualities to guide in such a difficult time. People are sending emails predicting/hoping that Biden will step aside and Hillary will become VP candidate. Fat chance, but a telling development.

Fall is here. The high holy days are here. Soon we’ll have dinners with family, pray for a happy and good new year, and proceed to evaluate and expunge all of our wrongs while emptying our bodies and systems. It’s a lovely idea and it works, these special 10 days, even if one doesn’t quite believe the story that God opens a little black book. It’s a good time for self evaluation and perhaps even adjustment and repair.

Shabbat shalom!

(Kinneret took this lovely photo)

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