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Saturday, December 23, 2006

Gourmet Glatt Update

Some have wondered why I have not opined on the Gourmet Glatt letter that has been circulating for the last few weeks. I answered in the comment section of MoChassid's post on the topic, but I'll reiterate my thoughts here:

I find the letter to be meaningless. The fact that it purports to be an "open letter to the Vaad Harabanim of the Five Towns and Far Rockaway" by "concerned citizens of our community" every one of whom choose to remain nameless, gives the letter very dubious credibility. The reader has no way of knowing if the letter was a joint effort by hundreds of writers or one lone writer. No way of knowing if the letter is authored by impartial concerned citizens or someone with - and let me put it this way - a horse in this race. The fact that the letter was sent around by the Gourmet Glatt's ownership to all members on their "loyal customer club" doesn't help its authenticity. Without any further information, the letter has no more credibility on the topic than...well, than so many hundreds of anonymous comments left on a blog post - or the anonymous blogger's very post itself.

78 Comments:

Anonymous 5 t rabbi said...

I disagree. You say that the letter has no more credibility than an anonymous blogger. I think it has far less. Bloggers who have been blogging for a long time have proven their credibility to their longtime followers even if they do not put their real name to the blog. If a blog had started up solely to cover the GG or kolko affair, however, I think it would have less credibility than a blog that has been running and covering diverse topics for a long time (like yours and others). This letter could very well be written by someone in the GG community. We have no other opinions that the anonymous letter writers have expressed in the past on other issues. How can we know whether they have a credible opinion?

7:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This letter was written by Avi Goldstein of Far Rockaway and a group of supporters.

8:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who is Avi Goldstein?

9:50 PM  
Blogger Yid With Lid said...

Orthomom
You are right this anonymous is meaningless just as meaningless as the Vaad Rabbis who spread rumors as unnamed sources though the star and the 5TJN. In fact it might have been written by th Gourmet Glatt people. At least they left a contact email and I am working with some friends to figure out if the the author can be found out. Unfortunately instead of learning about Kashrut from the Vaad, who ever it was that sent my friend (and others I understand)the letter, they learned from the Vaad Rabbis all about anonymous Loshen Hora

10:11 PM  
Blogger Yid With Lid said...

One more thing. That you and the 5towns Rabbi who posted didn't mention and is the reason I posted the letter on my site these are legitimate questions that the Rabbis SHOULD be answering. They could have put this story to bed in October.

This is no longer just a five towns issue. Not only am I watching it from my home in Tennessee but one look and my site meter shows that even when I don't cover this story I still get 10-15 visits a day looking for the vaad stories and no more of 1/3 of them are from NY State. The eyes of the world are watching the Rabbis of the Vaad, hoping they publicly explain themselves

10:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Yid with a Lid.. what site should I be visiting to help your site meter?

10:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why don't you Orthomom, just e-mail the writer and put your curiosity to rest. You do a fine job of just raking up trash, shame on you. Mr Avi Goldstein lives in Far Rockaway, why don't you call him?

11:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Avi Goldstein's name is nowhere on this letter. Nor is his e-mail address, Who says he wrote it?

11:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If Avi Goldstein's such a proud letter writer where is his name? Nowhere.

11:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am so tired of all this. I know that people's parnossah is at stake here, but if GG was so concerned why didn't they demand action of some sort? Call the vaad themselves to a beit din perhaps if they felt they were so very wronged? I know that there are behind the scenes workings going on and I hope that this will all be resolved quickly. I miss shopping at GG. In the meantime, those of you who besmirch our rabbis of the vaad are doing a great chilul ha-shem. This is not a question of a difference of opinions. If you, whoever you are KNEW something of import you certainly would not have been expressing it here. You would have been helping GG with their case. Let us please make the distinction between erlich G-d fearing individuals who are doing work on behalf of the klal, and the unfortunate sickos and perverts who may call themselves Rabbis but are nothing more than horrible mortals masking themselves in king's clothes; Kolko. Also, you are certainly entitled to disagree with the lawyer who is the spokesman for the Agudah, but there is no need to bash the Agudah on the whole. I don't agree with how they are handling this Kolko issue and others like it but I am hopeful that they will figure it out sooner rather than later so that justice can be done. The nuts who went to Tehran certainly gave an awful name to chareidim. Should I now dispise all Satmar? Absolutely not. G-d forbid you should need their services in terms of bikur cholim. If you did, you would call them tzadikkim. My point is, there are rotten apples everywhere, but you don't have to say all apples are bad.

11:44 PM  
Blogger Yid With Lid said...

to anonymous
I don't know which one because it seems as if I am the only one in this discussion leaving my name. click on the Yidwithlid above to go to my site.

Actually I may know stuff of importance the problem is I don't have the facts to back it it up (YET) so it I do not release it. But I do know hat the story has been carried by 3 newspapers the star, the 5tjw and JewishWeek I have been reading all three. If you go back and read the stories in the star and the 5tjw (the jewishweek hasn't done this yet) there has been incidents where the star ad the 5tjw has used phrases like Anonymous sources within the VAAD report. That is my problem with the VAAD rabbis not what they have done but HOW THEY HAVE DONE IT. Jewish law is very clear on doing things out in the open, these rabbis have not .

11:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

to yid with a lid.
An anonymous source is just that;anonymous. Sources within the vaad don't necessarily have to be the rabbis of the vaad themselves. All I'm saying is that conjecture and rumor whether they appear in the 5tjt or the new york times are just conjecture and rumor. A 'source" is only as good as you believe it is. When the NYTimes talks about Israel I take it with a whole lump of salt. We've seen them publish false pictures. We the people may never know what really went on with GG but I do trust the Rabbis on the vaad that I know personally. I don't know all of them, but the ones I do know, I trust. If you are a member of this community and you don't trust any of the Rabbeim, then you are living in the wrong place. This is not blind faith. You are entitled to disagree with your Rabbi's opinion. That's why many a family have lively discussions at the shabbos table over the Rabbbi's drosha. If you don't want him to paskin for you then he won't be the one where you ask a shailah. But if you do trust him to tell you whether the milchig spoon you mixed the shabbos chicken soup with renders the pot milchig, or fleishig then how can you not trust their judgement on this? They all presented a united front, and the Rabbis on the vaad are a divergent group by nature.( Two Rabbis in a room, three opinions) Ever wonder why? Agree, or don't agree, but whenever someone resorts to insults it dilutes whatever you are trying to say. We need to respect each other and that includes the people that we don't agree with. Not to, decends in to a breakdown of civility, and society at large.

11:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In europe before WWll many jews asked the Rabbis about leaving Europe. Many Rabbis told them not to leave. They followed these Rabbis to the gas chambers! When we we learn not to follow blindly? Anyone who has any questions just look about DAS TORAH
This is making me so sick,

12:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh give me a break! Anyone who can't come up with anything intelligent or original falls back to that. Do you even know what it means to personally lose 95% of your family to the gas chambers? no, well I do. And people did not blindly follow their Rabbis. There was no crystal ball saying do this or do that. People really did not know what was going to happen. My family had passports in hand and did not leave because they wouldn't leave parents and grandparents. Who knew? Hey, why are we still here? 9/11 9/11 9/11 . My point is that no one can predict the future and comparing what happened then has Nothing to do with the issue at hand.

12:37 PM  
Blogger Yid With Lid said...

Hey Both anonymous posters above.. neither one of you are posting your names..Mine is Sammy. I live in a little town outside of Nashville Tenn. What about you folks?

It is been my experience in life that Rabbi's like to teach. I think the fact that the Rabbis that are part of " Darth Vaader" are only giving opinion as anonymous sources with in the vaad is because they don't have belief in their own motivation.

Please don't throw at me that maybe some of those "anonymous sources" are not either the rabbis themselves or done with the knowledge of the rabbis. I haven't seen any retraction of the Loshen Hora from the vaad either. I haven't heard about your pulpit rabbis saying that the 5tjw or the Star passing along Loshen Hora so you should buy a different paper. But I have heard about pulpit rabbis saying don't buy from GG because their crime was they wanted to keep kosher certification. and was afraid of the Sopranos-like tactics of the VAAD.

I also haven't seen anyone comment on the questions that were asked in the supposed community Letter. I think they are legitimate questions that I would like answered. what about you folks

Oh and 5 t rabbi above do you have the courage of your convictions? why don't we know who you are? Are you really a Rabbi? If you are why cant we know your name.

You folks don't know how lucky you are to live in a large Jewish community. Yet you accept your Rabbis hiding behind the cloak of "anonymous comments" or anonymous posts to blogs such as the Rabbi above.We don't do that where I live because there are so few of us that we must hang together.

I said it before on my site and I will say it here. Shame on the VAAD Rabbis for using rumor to bash GG. Bash them in public using your name.

1:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

T0 Yid with a Lid
I live in the five towns and Far rockaway area for close to 35 years. That gives me a right to an opinion. You who do not live here and do not hear all the ins and outs that one hears on the corners,in shul (lobbies of course) and at the local simchas etc. can not form a valid opinion based on newspapers that may or may not have an agenda.I would not presume to form an opinion about the happenings in your neck of the woods, do not do so in mine.

1:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yidlid, you are clueless. The vaad rabbis acted based on a rumor? Shows how misinformed you are. This had nothing to do with rumor and everything to do with fact. And you're also dead wrong about halacha saying that the rabbanim have to release their info to the public. What halacha? Care to quote a source? Because you are wrong.

3:16 PM  
Anonymous AVI LICHTMAN said...

KOLAKOVOD TO YID WITH LID-LEAD THE WAY!!!!

3:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

to avi lichtman
why?

3:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Yidlid, you are clueless. The vaad rabbis acted based on a rumor? Shows how misinformed you are. This had nothing to do with rumor and everything to do with fact. And you're also dead wrong about halacha saying that the rabbanim have to release their info to the public. What halacha? Care to quote a source? Because you are wrong.

3:16 PM

OH< REALLY??? What about innocent until proven guilty? how about facing your accuser? the vaad operates with a hitleresque modus operandi. they dont have to tell their congregants anything--no facts--just blind faith in our ravs.. We really are an uneducated bunch of hyprocrites here in the five towns.. I am ashamed to be part of the congregation that was told to boycott GG.. My rabbi will not answer any questions about GG,,, My gut tells me that Tyranny left unchecked produced RYE. how sad.. GG should be suing their libelists and slanderers. Heading that list is RYE, does he really think that being a rabbi protects him from AMERICAN SECULAR laws? He should be looking to make shalom here in the 5 towns, but why should he care, he doesnt live here and is earning min 160,000. how much is he reporting> and how much is the vaad keeping of all our donations?

3:40 PM  
Blogger Yid With Lid said...

Thanks Avi

As a fellow Jew I am allowed to have an opinion. I don't live in Darfur or Eretz Yisrael but I open my mouth about those issues too.

If the news had filted all the way down to Tenn. then it has become a Chillul HaShem IMHO the Vaad has caused it and someone has to open their mouth.
I don't know if what the Vaad did to GG was right or wrong. I do know the way they have acted since is Wrong. Since the whole process stinks so much it is up to the rabbis to say something. So pleas don't tell me I am clueless, The entire Jewish world is looking at your little community of anonymous Rabbis and Posters. You are clueless about how this looks.

I also know the "community letter" that I posted on Friday asked very legitimate questions which the Vaad should answer. Whether it was written by some sort of community group or GG(which I suspect has at least some involvement with)

I also have read a lot of comments in this blog on mine and others that have covered this story from residents of the community that want more answers.

They keep saying how they miss being able to go to the store, and not understanding why they cant at least by packaged kosher products there. Folks get a little back bone. If you can buy the product in one store and its ok per your Rabbi, then you can buy the same product at GG. If not Rabbis please tell your community why not? or is it because GG is like a union buster, bringing in a different non Vaad Rabbi keep things kosher in his store.

To the people above that bash what I have said ..I am using my name. Identify yourselves or SHUT UP.Does anyone in the Five towns have a NAME. How do you folks call up Alyot to the Torah? "Yamod Anonymous ben Anonymous Ha Kohen?" Must be hard to know when you are called.

I didn't say that the rabbis acted on the basis of rumor. I said that they were spreading rumor. Reread the history of articles here on orthomom's site or my site "anonymous sources within the vaad" or messages through the VAAD lawyers. If they disagreed with the spreading of rumors they would have opened their mouths and denied them. Their silence says that they are compliant. and if you are looking for any Halicha that I am talking about...just google Loshen Hora.

3:54 PM  
Anonymous Moshe1 said...

Go to:
www.unkosherkashrut.blogspot.com

reveal yournames and sign a petition- stand up for your beliefs put your name behind it.

5:14 PM  
Anonymous unkosherkashrut.blogspot.com said...

You must read the petition written by Sheree Belsky -I would have never known go to unkosherkashrut.blogspot.com

5:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To answer, a close friends grandparents of mine said that following Rabbis blindly is a very dangerious situation. She pointed back to when she was a little girl and people asked there Rabbis about leaving europe and they were told that they had to stay. With tears in her eyes she said many could have been saved if they did not follow blindly. For years people learned many lessons from the mistakes of our grandparents ( the ones lucky enough to have lived). Now it seems as if those lessons have been lost.
The VAAD has set back our community to a dangerious time. Why is the VAAD holding back vital information? Why are some store allowed to have two (Zomicks has the VAAD and the "O;k"!) but when GG got a second they screamed.
I smell something unkosher and it is coming from the VAAD!

7:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sheree Belskys letter is so well writen it should be sent to everyone. I would love to see a local paper pick it up. But from what I have been told the local Jewish paper have been threatnened to be careful or else.....
That may explain the lack of good reporting or op-ed pages

7:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SHERREE BELSKY'S LETTER IS RIGHT ON THE MONEY... SHE IS A BRAVE WOMAN TO FACE DOWN THE VAAD LIKE THIS. I KNOW HASHEM HAS ONLY GOOD THINGS FOR HER AND HER CHILDREN. READ HER LETTER ON UNKOSHERKASHRUT.BLOGSPOT.COM. I FEEL THAT SHE HAS ENCAPSULATED THE ISSUE WITH GG PERFECTLY. I HOPE THE NEW YORK TIMES, THE DAILY NEWS AND THE NEW YORK POST SEE FIT TO PRINT HER LETTER AND DO A FOLLOW-UP ON THIS ONGOING NIGHTMARE. WITH PEOPLE LIKE MRS. BELSKY ON THE SIDE OF GG..I KNOW THAT GG WAS WRONGFULLY ACCUSED BY RYE. YOU HAVE MY SUPPORT...MALKIE COHEN

7:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's face facts.The rabbonim of this community have behaved like a bunch of incompetent gangsters.They are deserving of neither our love or respect.
This lowlife Eisen must be driven from our community and be replaced by a mensh from our community.The books of the Vaad must be opened to be examined by a competent CPA firm and a report issued to the entire community.
As far as the rabbis are concerned they must be made to pay for this chillul hashem.When you sell your chometz three months from now ,take your business elsewhere.Don't give them this opportunity to have cash which they never report to the IRS

8:05 PM  
Anonymous PEARL said...

SHEREE BELSKY ,MALKIE COHEN YOUR VOICES ARE HEARD . GO TO UNKOSHERKASHRUT.BLOGSPOT.COM MESSAGE ON DEC 24 2:27PM TO REVEAL THE TRUTH OF THE GG CONTRAVERSY. SCHONNIE PEARL

8:46 PM  
Anonymous AVI GOLDSTEIN said...

MOM OF 4 SHAME ON YOU!!! READ SHEREE BELSKYS LETTER

8:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mrs. Belsky's letter was indeed eloquent and she certainly made clear her opinions. However, I maintain that unless she knows something definitive, it is still all conjecture and speculation. Maybe she is right. If she is I tremble at the thought. If these are all conspiracy theories then I tremble at the thought of the loshon horoh that has been spread about our community. For those of you outside of this community all you know about are the issues that we have with GG. This is the most wonderful community full of tremendous tzedakah and chessed. Do we have problems? Do we have issues? Yes. So what? Who doesn't? You want to talk about tzoris, how about threats made against our Jewish bretheren on the school board? Jew against Jew is the worst thing we can do to each other. There is a problem here concerning GG. At some point soon I hope that the truth wins out and the healing can begin. Until then, I and the vast majority of people in this community have chosen to put their faith if not in the vaad itself as a whole then in their own Rabbi or Rabbis whom we have trust in. Not blind faith, but a trust borne out of respect and knowledge of past experience. By the way, Mrs. Belsky's organazation is indeed very worthy of your tzedaka contributions. She really helps a lot of kids with BIG problems. I have a lot of respect for her and certainly hope that misguided individuals do not punish those kids because she had some strong opinions. One thing does not have anything to do with the other. This is a free country and we are all entitled to our opinions but not to the extent that we make accusations stated as fact unless we indeed KNOW that what we say Is fact. We don't know the whole truth yet and in the meantime the vituperativness of the posts is detrimental to us all.

9:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The same commenter just keeps saying the same thing again and again. Do you think we will believe you that there are hundreds of people in this community who side against their rabbanim in favor of a store owner or a woman or an anonymous commenter (some of whom are likely one and the same). If that was going to happen, gg would be in decent financial shape. Which it isn't.

9:35 PM  
Blogger Yid With Lid said...

At least Ms Belsky has the guts to use her name Unlike the two posts above

Anonymous two above me..very heart warming. Now are you threatening MS Belsky with the comment "I have a lot of respect for her and certainly hope that misguided individuals do not punish those kids because she had some strong opinions."

You don't even have the guts to tell us who you are. How dare you.

If you want to threaten use your name...if you want to teach us or criticize us use your name. Otherwise go cower in your cowards corner because thats what you are by remaining anonymous

10:12 PM  
Blogger orthomom said...

This is getting annoying. The same comments over and over again. I have said it time and again, I will not tolerate trash-talking of individuals on either side of this conflict. Grow up, people. You have a point to make, don't do it with mudslinging and name-calling.

10:19 PM  
Blogger orthomom said...

also:

again, many of the comments above are by the same person. Using different aliases is probably not the best way to convince us you aren't the same guy, especially when you keep saying the same thing. Pick a name and stick with it.

10:21 PM  
Blogger Yid With Lid said...

BTW
I have just posted Sherree Belsky's letter on my site. I intend to pass it along to as many press Including some of the possible along with some of the anonymous postings from people who are afraid to talk because of fear of retribution from the VAAD. If any of you want to be contacted by a reporter please feel free to send me an email and I will pass it along to any reporter who takes on the story

11:21 PM  
Blogger orthomom said...

some of the anonymous postings from people who are afraid to talk because of fear of retribution from the VAAD.

Um, I don't think that is really the fear here at all. People don't like to publicly break from their Rabbi's guidelines for many reasons. Some are religious, I presume a large chuck are social. But I find it very difficult to imagine that in a community like ours, which is far less judgmental or monolithic in observance levels than most other Orthodox communities out there, are seriously worried about some unfounded Sopranos-like fear of retaliation from the Vaad.

We don't live on HBO.

Retaliation? In what form? Come on.

11:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yid with a lid
I don't ask how dare you because obviously you do dare. It's people like you who DON"T live here and foment trouble!!!! I happen to know Mrs. Belsky and she is a very nice person and also doing great work on behalf of troubled kids who would not otherwise have a voice and get the important help that they need. I meant exactly what I said. Don't read into it more than that. People like you scare me and that's why I go by anonymous. You want to voice your opinion on Darfur fine. Keep your big mouth shut about the five towns. Everybody who lives here has an opinion on this matter. WE are entitled. The rest of you who get your info from disgruntled people on both sides of the fence, KEEP OUT. Those here in the 'know' are not letting everyone else in just yet. Why, I don't know. We may never know. But the least we can do is respect how we speak about the very people we turn to when we need all different sorts of guidance. Is there one party that is totally in the right and one party that is totally in the wrong? HIghly unlikely. I am hoping perhaps naively that the powers that be are working this entire situation out to a conclusion that will leave everyone at peace, if not happy. In the meantime the rest of us are just spinning our wheels. This IS a truly wonderful community that WILL survive this mess and all the loshon horoh that was generated.

11:34 PM  
Blogger Yid With Lid said...

I speak even though I dont live there because I am a Jew, and because I am a Jew---I detest when people with power abuse it by "beating up" on those with out". In many different ways that is warned against many times in the Torah. ...widows and orphans stumbling block before the blind etc The Vaad is doing that and you are too.

You tell me to keep out of it...How do we know that you are legit...you wont even your name. The Rabbi who posted earlier didnt give his name. Don't dare tell me that you wont give your name because of me. You have been posting anonymously for much longer than my post this morning. You post anonymously because it gives you power you can say what you want without the fear of someone disagreeing with the person. I only posted this morning to respond to a comment by Orthomom on my site. I continued to post because frankly the fact that you all criticize without giving your name proves that you dont have the convictions of your actions. You are scared, just like the businessmen who say they cant talk because of fear of VAAD retribution. When people are afraid to ask Questions of the Vaad Rabbis you folks have problems that are a lot bigger than Kashur.

Dont tell me to stay out of it until you have the courage to tell those who have named themselves just who you are. I intend to fight for Justice in your town. Its what Jewish people do.

When I was a kid I used to get beaten on by bullies on the way to school. What started out as a tongue in cheek post for me three months ago has turned out to be a battle against bullies like you and bullies like the Vaad.

12:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a free country and we are all entitled to our opinions but not to the extent that we make accusations stated as fact unless we indeed KNOW that what we say Is fact. We don't know the whole truth yet and in the meantime the vituperativness of the posts is detrimental to us all.

I just want you all to know that I never work from speculation and I do check my facts. I did investigate to the best of my ability and everything I wrote I checked out. Rabbi Eisen himself told my husband and me that "the Bolenders where not Shomer Shabbos" when we bumped into him in Hershey Park on Chol Hamoed Sukkos. I was blown away by his brusk and brutal response, which he quickly followed up with "if they are let them prove it". I felt that the come back was even worse than the original "NO!" to my husband's question "are the Bolender's Shomer Shabbos".

I was very shaken by this exchange and was upset that any Jew should have to "Prove" that they were Shomer Torah and Mitzvos. So I went into GG and found Chaim Bolender in the office. I was embarrassed but I asked him and he gave me a letter from Rabbi Paltiel in Great Neck which he said Rabbi Eisen had as well. I went down to Chabbad of Great Neck to speak to Rabbi Paltiel. He wasn't there but he called me back.

I didn't take any of this whole issue with GG lightly. I went in to meet the VAAD mashgichim and ask questions. That is how I met Rabbi Pincus. I asked what procedures where implemented and carried out in the store as in relation to accepting deliveries and who signed for them. The VAAD mashgichim are responsible for all deliveries and they sign all the bills of lading and/or invoices. I was shown the corner where "questionable items" that the goyim find after opening boxes or the Bolenders themselves find and question RYE about are put. I was shown letters that the Bolenders sent to the VAAD and I was shown a log that the Bolenders had RYE sign in regard to products he told them they could use and that he told them a week later he never said they could use.

I went back to the Bolenders with every stupid rumor my husband brought home from shul and they corrected any inconsistency. NO they were never open on Shabbos or Yom Tov! No they did not take in chometz on Pesach. There was a delivery from Rubashkin that came in on Chol Hamoed that contained Kitnios not Chometz This was a mistake in the order and Rubashkin called later to apologize. They kept the voice mail message.

I bothered to go in and talk to the family and hear their side of the story. I bothered to talk to the VAAD's own mashgiach and hear his side of the story. I asked questions and got answers. I went in to meet Rabbi Kravitz and asked him about the Kashrus and what he saw when he took over. I was shown the inside freezer and the meat room. There are many other customers who have stopped in the office or called on the phone to offer support, even though their Rabbonim did not allow them to shop there.

And one more thing you should know. They consulted with a Rav every step of the way, before hiring a new Mashgiach, before doing anything. They asked advice from Das Torah. I believe they felt that since the VAAD had such a low opinion of Mark, maybe they would respect another RAV better and that by having Rabbi Kravitz there, he would be able to answer to Rabbi Eisen more effectively. It wasn't initially meant as a means to throw out the VAAD or to take the place of the VAAD. They really wanted to be so super careful that Rabbi Eisen couldn't possibly find any fault with them. That was their original concept. Unfortunately, it wasn't looked at that way. Rabbi Eisen took it as an affront and pulled the hechsher. Many of you don't know this either, because you were all waving your support the VAAD banner, the Friday that the VAAD pulled the hechsher at 4:00pm, closing time...the letter was handed to an employee not directly to the owners. Please remember all of you, that the owners no longer had the keys. The 2 VAAD mashgichim and a set each and I believe Rabbi Eisen had one set and I believe Rabbi Hess (I am not sure if I am supposed to call him Rabbi, I don't know if he has smicha. He is Rabbi Eisen's assistant and is about 22, from what I am told. I don't even know how much training he has in Kashrus. He works part time and learns part time)

At any rate, when they handed over the letter to the employee of the store, a goy, and spread the news all over town, they didn't think it was important to hand over the keys to the store. They declared they were no longer going to supervise the store, they had taken the keys away from the owners of the store, they were the only ones in possession of the keys but didn't deem it important to return the keys along with the letter so that the owners and/or management of the store could lock up and secure the facility for the weekend. How is that for mean and manipulative tactics? Rabbi/Mr. Hess did not produce the keys until GG's lawyer was present and had already dialed the police.

Yes folks, these are the facts that I investigated and verified with the owners, workers, attorneys, some Rabbis, etc. As I said, things aren't always as they seem. This is what I found out and this has been eating at me and keeping me up at night. It is not enough that I worry about teenagers and how they are going to make it through another day, I worry about why this man, Rabbi Eisen, hates this family so much he wants to destroy them. I hate Loshon Hora because it destroys peoples lives. I hate manipulative and evil people, but Hashem will take care of them because he is in charge and after 120 everyone stands before his maker and gives a din v'chesbon of all the good and evils they have perpetrated over their life span. Everyone pays for the pain and suffering they cause any other of Hashem's children. I will say it again. I DON'T BELIEVE THAT THE RABBONIM REALIZED AND UNDERSTOOD EISEN'S GAME. I only hope they catch on quickly and stop the madness before he destroys us. And you know what else worries me? If he does this to the Bolenders who will be next. Is Ruthie at Sabra's his next victim? Will all of you really sit idly by if he earmarks her next for slaughter?

Sherree

12:29 AM  
Blogger Yid With Lid said...

Thanks Sherree you are a true honest person and should be commended

12:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Correction it wasn't Chabad of Great Neck it was Chabad of Port Washington. I am very tired and was a little fuzzy it was weeks ago. I just reread my own post and wanted to correct the Town's name.

I apologize if there was any confusion
Sherree

12:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Sherree
I commend you on your tenacity.
At least when you make your case it's based on evidence that you have investigated first hand. I just find it hard (and in my heart of hearts hard) to believe that the Rabbis that I hold in high esteem, with good reason, could have been so duped.Even if all you say is proven to be so, why? What was the hidden agenda? Anyone who has been living here , or in the NY area for a long time can remember quite a few scandals with kosher establishments that were far worse then the infractions GG seems to have incurred. What did GG do that so ticked off the vaad that they would want to in essence get rid of them. I certainly don't know. Also, if things played out exactly the way you presented them, how and why would all the Rabbis present a united front? If there wasn't more to this story than what it looks like wouldn't even one Rabbi have broken from the group? Again I don't know and do not want to venture a guess. This whole affair saddens me no end as it does most members of our community. I hope that a peaceful resolution is not out of reach. However, I maintain that if people like Yid with a lid keep trying to make trouble we will never find peace here. His main objective is to take our community pain and tzoris and broadcast it to the newspapers. Why? To what end? For what purpose? Unfortunately, the case of GG and the Vaad is more then just that. It's unleashed all sorts of people from who knows where with their own agenda, espousing and devisivness having nothing to do with the original issue at hand.

1:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

momof4 said...
also:

again, many of the comments above are by the same person. Using different aliases is probably not the best way to convince us you aren't the same guy, especially when you keep saying the same thing. Pick a name and stick with it.


Mom of 4 you know the answers we don't why not wo idntifying the URL's at least state that post of these times are written by one person and posts of these times are written by another. ?

4:59 AM  
Anonymous EMMIS said...

The VAAD UNCOVERED ,see the REAL TRUTH go to UNKOSHERKASHRUT.BLOGSPOT.COM READ SHEREE BELSKYS LETTER TO THE 5 TOWNS JEWISH TIMES.

7:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yossi eisen has been quoted saying:
I am the choshen mishpast and everybody else is sheker."
this is a real quote he told authorities in the kashrus world.

he is a threat to the way we live. he is stripping us of our respect and peace as one community.

get rid of him before it is to late. the damage might be irreversible.

save the five towns, get rid of this mafia kingpin.

December 5, 2006 7:38:00 PM PST

Rabbi Eisen is a coward. Rabbi Eisen never gave the the Bolender's any opportunity to defend against allegations. In his common low class way he as failed to produce any proof, hides behind the Rabbi's he sold a used car to with the odometer turned back. I am totally disgusted and will continue to shop at Gourmet Glatt and recommend that they should sue every shul and shul president who had the nerve to put an illegal boycott upon it. Rabbi Eisen, don't worry, your name is as always will be top on the list.
Mazel Tov on building a Boro Park in a community which doesn't welcome you. Harold Landsman, Smithtown New York

8:55 AM  
Blogger orthomom said...

Mom of 4 you know the answers we don't why not wo idntifying the URL's at least state that post of these times are written by one person and posts of these times are written by another?

I would never post an IP except in extreme cases. I am just warning the commenter that I can see what a fool hes being by using alternate aliases from the same IP.

9:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SO, ORTHOMOM, WHEN SOMEONE SAYS SOMETHING SO TRUE IT CANNOT BE DISPUTED, YOU WILL TRY TO EXPOSE THEM AND KEEP THEM OFF YOUR SITE? HOW TYPICAL OF YOU AND I FEEL SORRY FOR THOSE IN YOUR OWN FAMILY AND FRIEND CIRCLE WHO TRY TO ENLIGHTEN YOU.

9:23 AM  
Blogger orthomom said...

Anonymous said...

SO, ORTHOMOM, WHEN SOMEONE SAYS SOMETHING SO TRUE IT CANNOT BE DISPUTED, YOU WILL TRY TO EXPOSE THEM AND KEEP THEM OFF YOUR SITE?


Uh, no. As I said, I would never expose IP addresses, except in cases of extreme abuse.

HOW TYPICAL OF YOU AND I FEEL SORRY FOR THOSE IN YOUR OWN FAMILY AND FRIEND CIRCLE WHO TRY TO ENLIGHTEN YOU.

That's an inane comment. And your CapsLock key (as it always seems to be( is stuck again.

9:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

why would all the Rabbis present a united front? wouldn't even one Rabbi have broken from the group?

Great Questions!!! And there is an answer. That is the purpose of any VAAD, to stick together and show a united front. Answer to second question: THERE WAS ONE RAV WHO STOOD UP AND REFUSED TO SIGN THE LETTER AND THAT WAS RABBI SPIEGEL. G-D BLESS HIM!!!!!!

Sherree

10:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

get rid of this mafia kingpin

Every single time the Vaad is compared to the Mafia someone in the mafia gets insulted. If the Mafia was run as poorly as the Vaad it would have fallen apart long ago.

10:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What good does it do us to keep complaining here on this blog? What are you going to do in public? Are you willing to take a stand and write to the editor of the 5Towns Jewish Times? The deadline for publication is Tuesday night. Even if he can't publish all our letters and only publishes 3 or 4. If he writes in the paper that he received 200 letters that will have an impact.

If he takes 500 hundred letters to VAAD Rabbonim such as Rabbi Ginzberg, Rabbi Billet, Rabbi Flaum, Rabbi Leibowitz, both Rabbi Weinbergers, Rabbi Brofman etc. even Steven Savitsky and Moshe Mishkowitz to show them that the community does not back the VAAD, don't you think that would have an impact on their decision concerning both Rabbi Eisen and Gourmet Glatt?

If 500 people wrote to Larry with a signed email stating they do not support the VAAD due to this fiasco and they petition the VAAD to remove Rabbi Eisen from his position. What do you think would happen? There is power in numbers.

Please I am begging all of you. Those who support the VAAD, ko hakovod to you, you are entitled to your opinion and if I haven't changed your minds and opened your eyes to see things from the other perspective then maybe I am not as good a "coach" as I have been trained to be. But please understand that there are two sides to every story and go back to the Gemarah to realize that. You are obligated to at least try to see the other's perspective.

Those of you who do believe me, at least the research that I have done and would like the Rabbonim to at least do the same, please voice your opinions proudly and out loud, and send letters to the editor at editor@5townsjtimes.com.

Tizku L'mitzvos,
Sherree Belsky

11:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

to sherree and orthomom
Could either or both of you please expound on what happened yesterday on CNN concerning our school board? I missed it, and it didn't sound like good news from your post.

12:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Sherree and all the intelligent individuals out there in blogland... if you can print the email addresses to the editors of the papers involved, i, for one, would cut and paste AND include my name..it is devora stern. i am disgusted with this nonsense.. At least with the mafia you knew what to expect. and Rico laws took take of that. And HaShem took care of Gotti. Maybe our so-called Rabbonim will have the same fate for similiar crimes.

12:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You can write to Larry Gordon at editor@5townsjtimes.com

Sherree Belsky

1:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
get rid of this mafia kingpin

"Every single time the Vaad is compared to the Mafia someone in the mafia gets insulted. If the Mafia was run as poorly as the Vaad it would have fallen apart long ago. "

10:28 AM
I Love YOur SEnse of Humor.... And i state with emphasis..May all the rabbonim who blindly listened to a thug and put GG out of business suffer the fate of a Gotti. To all those who made up their own minds after much inquiry and examination and detective work...May HaShem grant you and yours peace and prosperity and entrance to Gan Eden.

2:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
why would all the Rabbis present a united front? wouldn't even one Rabbi have broken from the group?

Great Questions!!! And there is an answer. That is the purpose of any VAAD, to stick together and show a united front. Answer to second question: THERE WAS ONE RAV WHO STOOD UP AND REFUSED TO SIGN THE LETTER AND THAT WAS RABBI SPIEGEL.

Rabbi Spiegel is related to the Kaminetsky's the owners of GG have been nice to the Kaminetsky's for a long time-thus even though R. Lefkowitz signed the letter he has told people they can buy at GG.

even Steven Savitsky
also current Prez of OU-a much bigger Kashrut Organization

3:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When Pesach rolls around ,sell your chometz thru Rabbi Spiegel .the only rav in the community with integrity.let him have the parnassah.the others should be given a taste of their own medicine.

4:32 PM  
Anonymous A.G said...

Read Rabbi Lichtmans editorial in the JewishStar this week-its getting better!

8:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Better yet, write your own. Make your voices heard. Send a letter to both local papers and sign your names to it. There is power in the press and power in numbers. Use your voice and the power we have when we ban together to make a positive change in what is happening here. Blogging is a good way to vent our feelings but if we really want to get something accomplished we must go out in public and do something positive.

Sherree Belsky

10:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There will be Group Shop set up for those of us who feel GG has been given a raw deal. The group shop is scheduled for this thursday, dec 28th.. gg is in dire straits. for those who have supported gg, this is a no brainer.. for those who cannot sleep at night knowing they helped put a JEWISH-OWNED business out of business, here is your last chance for redemption. see you all on thurs.

12:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

is it true gg is being sold?

2:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Has bin sold

3:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

now what?

3:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just came back from GG. It is very close to the end and they cannot hold out much longer. The group shop is a very good idea and should be organized. Who ever thought of it, please post the time you wish to do it and if we should all gather in the parking lot or start at a different location and walk over, for instance. Shall we meet at Beth Sholom Parking lot or the Young Israel of Lawrence/Cedarhurst and organize ourselves as a group and then walk together to show unity and solidarity in the community. Maybe we should all have a label on that says,
" We respect our Rabbonim but we disagree wholeheartedly in this case. KEEP GG OPEN, JEWS FORGIVE EACH OTHER."

If we do it in an organized fashion, we will have an impact. Also, if those members in the community were afraid to come out in public before because they feared they would be the only ones, they can come to the designated location and see how many others are willing to go into the store arm and arm to keep it open. There is power in numbers.

Sherree Belsky

3:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please write Larry Gordon at: editor@5tjt.com. He said he hasn't received any emails.

Sherree Belsky

4:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The store isn't going to close, it's going to be sold; and very soon now I've heard.

So, you'll all have Gourmet Glatt back and they'll be under the Vaad and Rabbi Kravitz will be gone and so will the Bolenders.

What I have to wonder is how many of you will refuse to shop there in support of the Bolenders.

The Vaad called a boycott of the Bolenders, now if it is sold to someone else we must boycott the new owners. Let's make sure that no matter who they are, no matter how honest they are, no matter how frum they are, no matter how well they run Gourmet Glatt that they never make one penny of profit by kicking out the rightful owners.

We should have a flag made with a picture of an Empire Chicken label with a circle and a slash through it and the slogan Remember the Bolenders!!!

By this time next month no one will even care.

6:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think it says a lot about how ridiculous the rhetoric on this whole thing has gotten that I can't figure out if anon 6:24 is serious or just being sarcastic.

6:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Those of you who wanted to check Vaad finances were right on...as deep throat told woodward and bernstein....follow the money.

6:31 PM  
Blogger Yid With Lid said...

I think he his serious. why don't you ask him after all he has the same name as you---anonymous. It seems that a sale is immanent but not done yet. for those who really believe that an injustice is being done..why not join thursday's shop-in or are you too scared to be seen

6:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yid with a lid
You planning on flying in? Or do you just like to spout off from your safe distance egging people on.

7:30 PM  
Anonymous Avi Goldstein said...

Avi Goldstein says:

Someone told me that my name has been circulating on blogs in regard to GG. Whereas I stopped reading the blogs because of the lashon hara and rechilus that I found, I did take a glance today, and sure enough, there I was! So let me make the following points. First, there is a post that reads as follows:

AVI GOLDSTEIN said...
MOM OF 4 SHAME ON YOU!!! READ SHEREE BELSKYS LETTER

I did not post this; someone used my name. (I have not read Ms. Belsky's letter.)

Second, it is true that I am the person who wrote the Open Letter to the Vaad, but the letter was circulated to a number of individuals (more than 10, less than 50) who approved of it and contributed to its final form. (None were members of the Bolender family or employed by GG.)
We were aware that anonymity might be viewed as cowardice, and perhaps it is. But the issue before us was not our personal honor, but rather trying to protect GG's right to stay in business. We harbored no personal grudges against the Vaad, and indeed, I am personally close to many Vaad rabbanim, one of whom (a strong opponent of GG) saw the letter before it was circulated.
Some people were prepared to sign their names, while others did not want to. I felt that to spend weeks tracking down signatures was to spend weeks that GG could not afford to lose. And so we released the letter in its unsigned version.
While the letter was anonymous, I opened an email address to where comments could be sent (gourmetdiscussion@yahoo.com), and my name appeared on the tag of the responses.
I don't know that the letter had any influence on the outcome, but I do know that it gave comfort to the Bolenders, and of this I am very proud.

4:37 PM  
Anonymous Avi Goldstein said...

Avi Goldstein said:

Just to follow up on my previous post, after GG circulated the Open Letter to its own email list, gourmetdiscussion received dozens of messages in support of GG and only 2 against. I believe that this demonstrates the undercurrent of support for the sentiments expressed in the letter.

4:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous Letter said...

I think all anonymous letters should have equal credibility and treated no different from a non-anonymous complaint of comment. Sometimes things need to be said "anonymous" for one reason or another.

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