From CNN:

The more than 9,000 violations the state alleges fall into five categories: employing a child under age 18 in a meatpacking plant; employing a child under age 18 in an occupation that exposes the child to dangerous or poisonous chemicals; employing a child under age 16 who operated power machinery; employing a child under age 16 who worked during prohibited hours or more hours in a day than permitted by law; and employing a child under 16 who worked more days in a week than permitted by law.

It said the company’s records also show that employees were not paid for all overtime worked.

Nope, not Wal-Mart. It’s Agriprocessors Inc., plant owner Abraham Aaron Rubashkin, former plant manager Sholom Rubashkin, human resources manager Elizabeth Billmeyer, and Laura Althouse and Karina Freund, management employees in the company’s human resources division.

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  • Someone must have given them a heter not observe the laws of the land. My landlord and most of the people in Plifton got the same heter.

    I am really going to try to have this be the last nasty sarcastic remark I make between now and Yom Kippur because all this self-hatred is killing me.

  • Well, I don’t know who gave the heter, but if it was the OU, then they’re doing an about-face by threatening to revoke kashrut status within 2 weeks if management isn’t overhauled, starting with Sholom Rubashkin.

  • Can I just ask one serious question: doesn’t all this garbage coming out of the Orthodox community make anybody else in addition to me want to throw out/modify/reform their own Orthodox lifestyle? I feel like the teacher in Ferris Bueler’s Day Off: Anyone? Anyone?

    I know the answer is “it’s the people, not the laws”…but if the laws aren’t making better people, what the hell are they for? Anyone? Just to torture us? Anyone? Because being Ortho is not…anyone? easy or anyone? Fun… or anyone? Inexpensive.

  • Chutzpah: Meh. Don’t blame the laws, blame the people. It’s entirely possible to follow the laws while still being heartless, cruel and downright sinister.

    That said, Agriprocessors didn’t even follow Torah anyway; following the laws of the land is required, and clearly the Rubashkins didn’t follow that one.

  • Breaking News… OU says they will withdraw the OU certification on Agriprocessors unless the management is totally changed …… and unless several pounds of chickens and beef are delivered to their doorsteps in time for Rosh Hashana

  • Right Kari….they had that “but the money pays for Yeshiva scholarships” heter. Ah, the banality of evil.

    Sometimes it’s time to say “these laws are not helping our culture evolve spirituality” but I guess I’m the only one saying that…anyone? JTS? Reconstructionists? Anyone? Secular Jews?

    So what hechsers of kosher meat are going to be available in this Country’s Jails?

  • Chutzpah: The laws can help your spirituality… if its your thing. Observance should always be on the basis of personal preference and desire, not on perceived obligation or requirement.

    In any case, they make organic kosher meat; why not buy that?

  • Kari….dear sweet Kari, obviously you are not running a home of 6 or more children,with at least of whom has special needs, and paying Yeshiva tuition for all of them. Thank God I’m not either , but many people I know in my little village do fit that profile.

    The reason that cholent became the classic dish of Orthodox Jews is because they were poor peasants who could not afford to eat meat, so they saved it for Shabbat and strectched it as much as possible with beans and potatoes. Every culture has it’s iconic peasant foods that are delicious and stretch the expensive meat so that everyone can have a sliver.

    The reason I choose not to buy Kosher meat, much less Organic Kosher meat, is because I prefer not to life like a peasant.

    This is 2008. The evil management at Wal-Mart has the ability to provide my family with sanitary, heavily regulated meat at low prices. They exploit their workers within the letter of the law of the land.

    Therefore, I shop within the budget of a single working mother with 3 children who pays child support to her loser of an Ex-husband, to provide my offspring with the most nutritious and least expensive food I can without blatantly disregarding the freedoms of capitalism and democracy we are privileged to have in the U.S.

    Spirituality is free. Organic Kosher chop meat is $7.00 a pound.
    Keeping Kosher is a right and privilege of the rich, for all the rest of the schleppers spirituality has to take a backseat to living. For me being spiritual includes tryng to be a good citizen of my State and Country. Many in my little village prefer welfare fraud, IRS fraud and yes, to eat the products of 9000 child labor violations in the name of spirituality. Makes no sense to me, but hey, neither does having a baby and going back to work the next day.

  • What does my children’s evil Stepmother feed them?
    White pasta. White pasta with ketchup. White pasta with salt and butter cooked by her obese 11 year old daughter who she is teaching to be a “bala busta” (translation: ballbuster)

    This is her version of being an American peasant. In Ireland, where she was brought up as 7 of 9 Orthodox children, she probably ate white potatoes. white potatoes with salt and butter and may white potatoes with a sliver of meat on Shabbat.

    But hey, at least she is keeping glatt kosher when she screams at my children for taking pretzels from the pantry without asking because she has to keep “inventory” on the food or goes yells if they fail to mumble a bracha on their salty processed white flour.

    Ahhh, spirituality.

  • damn, can’t help myself with the nasty sarcasm on this topic…give me a different one…I’ll try to be sweet.