September 8, 2022 9:27 pm at 9:27 pm #2122741
Avram > As far as your assertion that you can go against the modern poskim with the Rambam because the Lakewood vaad itself cited the Rambam – do you realize that the vaad specifically cited the Rambam there as a rebuke to those who abuse the Rambam to hate on full-time Torah learning?
I am not sure what Vaad had in mind. I was shocked, shocked, and saddened, that Vaad could quote Rambam selectively. Maybe the question mentioned the other Rambam and it got edited out, or they presume that everyone knows the other Rambam. As it is, it looks like a selective argument. This is coming from an organization that is there to solve business disputes…
What do you think about it? Do you have a better explanation? Maybe someone should ask them about. It would be good to have a more lomdishe explanation from them.September 8, 2022 9:41 pm at 9:41 pm #2122746
Avram > We’re not discussing relying on people, but on government programs that the citizens pay into with their taxes. You should avoid utilizing public roads,
Right, this might be a reasonable position (Obama used it against Romney – “you did not build that, we did”). Maybe this is what R Henneman means when saying “they dont do it for tzdokah”.
a) are there sources making this argument explicitly?
b) what would be included in Sh’A definition beyond “tzedokah”
c) would the resolution depend on time and place? There are people with strong opinions that beings “on the dole” while able to work is shameful and there are those who want to make everyone comfortable … I guess, state laws will reflect majority attitude and you need to read those carefully. So, halocha for TX and CA will be different.September 8, 2022 9:53 pm at 9:53 pm #2122748
For fun, I looked up TX SNAP rules. I don’t think federal rules are different, but the state page sounds totally different from IL. In IL it is all about – come get this.
In TX it says – somehow twice! – Most people ages 16 to 59 must follow work rules to get SNAP benefits. Work rules mean a person must look for a job or be in an approved work program. If the person has a job, they can’t quit without a good reason.
I can’t find information about children, although it is hinted in this stern announcement: Most adults ages 18 to 49 with no children in their home can get SNAP for only three months in a three-year period. The benefit period might be longer if the person works at least 20 hours a week or is in a job or training program. Some adults might not have to work to get benefits, such as those who have a disability or are pregnant.
This just shows how varying attitudes might be between states.September 8, 2022 10:34 pm at 10:34 pm #2122765
Avram > [ THAT IS NOT IN THE TIMES OR PLACES WHERE WE NEED TO PROTECT OUR SOCIETY FROM SHMAD AND SUCH]”
That is certainly this time and place.
So, maybe this is where the real disagreement lies. Here is my naive view of current Jewish demographics in US:
2/3 are non-observant and assimilated and quickly losing any connection to Yiddishkeit and have a slight chance of being rescued by Chabad on campus or a birthright trip…
remaining consist of
– MO that grows moderately while losing some on the left side to assimilation into liberalism/OO, etc
– non-MO that grows fast, with some moving closer to MO when going to work/college.
so, this last group does not experience much assimilation, unless you count any shift towards work as a first step in sliding down. I don’t think it is. People with now 3 generations of yeshiva education are not marrying shiksas if they enroll in Columbia. At worst, they get some modernishe religious views. The worst of that is also preventable, as people here referred to Landers as an alternative to YU; and to Baltimore.September 8, 2022 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm #2122767
From history of welfare assistance, it is a very political argument .. We can say that about half of population wants work requirements for most programs and half does not. So, when using these programs at community level, we definitely annoy about half of the people (several aharonim on YD mention hillul Hashem). Of course, in the states where most Jews live, numbers of people against are less.September 8, 2022 10:41 pm at 10:41 pm #2122768
Avram > I believe the government money being discussed in Israel referred to funding for schools.
yes, and the argument seems to apply more generally.
> if they went away, things would become much more challenging, but iyH the “system” wouldn’t collapse.
I don’t know what the numbers are, but your argument fits what R Shach is saying in terms of “partially relying”.September 9, 2022 4:45 pm at 4:45 pm #2122999
Even as Lakewood Vaad tries to use Rambam.
Strawman. I didn’t ch”v say we never pasken like the Ramba”m. But, the halacha from the Ramba”m you keep citing in your anti kollel diatribes is one we don’t pasken like. Happens to be that it’s an apparrent stirah in the Ramba”m anyhow.September 9, 2022 4:53 pm at 4:53 pm #2123000
Can we use non-Jewish public assistance in general.
You made up the issue. It’s not really one.September 9, 2022 4:53 pm at 4:53 pm #2123001
(and 3)September 9, 2022 5:18 pm at 5:18 pm #2123009
“You don’t think this is sufficient for a person who wants to learn. And we presume here that the wife volunteers to agree to that lifestyle and even works. [snip longer digression about wife preferences]”
That was not my point, and the rest of your post was an unrelated digression. My point was that $12,000 a year is an insufficient income to raise a family from qualifying for benefits.September 9, 2022 5:19 pm at 5:19 pm #2123011
“This is an important point. I understand your feelings but not your logic.”
What about my logic do you not understand?September 9, 2022 5:19 pm at 5:19 pm #2123012
“I was shocked, shocked, and saddened, that Vaad could quote Rambam selectively. Maybe the question mentioned the other Rambam and it got edited out, or they presume that everyone knows the other Rambam.”
The question was based on your favorite Rambam, so why would they need to rehash? And why are you shocked and saddened when selectively quoting the Rambam is exactly what you are doing?September 9, 2022 5:20 pm at 5:20 pm #2123013
“There are people with strong opinions that beings “on the dole” while able to work is shameful and there are those who want to make everyone comfortable”
“People” meaning you? And we don’t live our lives based on omigosh what will the gentiles think. There are people with strong opinions that mila is mutilation. Should we stop performing bris mila to look good to them?September 11, 2022 10:45 am at 10:45 am #2123276
> My point was that $12,000 a year is an insufficient income to raise a family from qualifying for benefits.
My suggestion is for someone to work a little to earn for modest living. According to my shita, one should not then go take benefits. If he legitimately is not able to earn more, then he can do, at least according to R Henneman’s explanation that government assistance is not non-Jewish tzedoka. And we did not factor the wife’s earnings. I am not pushing here for the Ketubot 60s discussion that the father can send kids over 6 y.o. to earn for their upkeep – it is allowed but not recommended.September 11, 2022 10:46 am at 10:46 am #2123279
>> THERE ARE PEOPLE WITH STRONG OPINIONS THAT BEINGS “ON THE DOLE”
> People” meaning you? And we don’t live our lives based on omigosh what will the gentiles think
I do mean Americans. Several acharonim on YD mention hillul Hashem, this seem to take into account what they think. It may be an interesting discussion when we do or not take into account. A famous answer to some European monarch why Jews do not follow majority (of all people) is “only when there is a sofek”.
As to this question, I checked the polls, it seems that about half of Americans are skeptical of public
of public assitance. So, even as overall legal system is a compromise between two sides, there is a large minority that will see unjustifiable use of public assistance as shameful. So do we follow the law as is or do we keep in mind that maybe 4 out of 10 people will see this as Hillul Hashem… When same R Henneman warned people skirting quarantine laws by joining several yards to make a minyan – that someone will not give a ventilator to a Jew in the hospital – he surely did not mean that majority of people will behave this way, just some of them.September 11, 2022 11:09 am at 11:09 am #2123296
“My suggestion is for someone to work a little to earn for modest living.”
When anyone who actually understands the value of Torah learning knows that doing it full time, for however long, is a privilege, why should they follow a suggestion of someone who worships money and secularism just to keep him happy?
Major head scratcherSeptember 11, 2022 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm #2123342
Avram > THE QUESTION WAS BASED ON YOUR FAVORITE RAMBAM, SO WHY WOULD THEY NEED TO REHASH? AND WHY ARE YOU SHOCKED AND SADDENED WHEN SELECTIVELY QUOTING THE RAMBAM IS EXACTLY WHAT YOU ARE DOING?
Vaad statement admits other Chazal say that, but then appeal to Rambam. Direct quote:
>> It is true that Chazal say it is preferable to take any job than to live off of tzedakah; however, the Rambam says that anyone who accepts to spend his days learning Torah should be supported by the public.
This may an unfortunate turn of words, but I would expect an esteemed center in the capitol of Jewish learning to be better at quoting sources than a humble internet poster. This is really ironic/sad that it is so hard to find an erliche lomdishe explanation in support of the lomdim .. I admit that internet may not be the best place for this, so I’d love to find good sources to consider serious arguments for either side.September 11, 2022 3:53 pm at 3:53 pm #2123376AviraDeArahParticipant
The shailoh was paskened centuries ago. The radvas on the rambam says that if we paskened like him, כבר נשתכחה תורב מישראל ח”ו
The nosei keilim don’t bring it. Shu”a doesn’t say it. The achronim almost all say that in their time there isn’t even a middah tovah to not taking tzedaka to learn.
Let it go. We don’t hold of 1/3 or so of the rambam’s own shitos – why do people harp on this so much?
Rav Moshe writes that it’s gaavah to want to follow that shitoh nowadays.September 11, 2022 11:35 pm at 11:35 pm #2123506
Syag > When anyone who actually understands the value of Torah learning knows that doing it full time, for however long, is a privilege
Look, there are lots of good reasons for someone to sit and only learn and nobody suggested that Vilna Gaon should have been teaching math at Vilna Universitas. But, to the opposite, that someone who actually goes out and fulfils holy mitzvas of having correct measurements; paying workers on time; plowing without kilayim; giving free loans; returning bag left by a customer; putting a fence around the heavy equipment at the factory; leaving correct inheritance to his sons; not plow with an ox and a donkey; keeping your vows (or away from them) – and this is just from the last parsha – so you are saying that a person who expresses himself to these mitzvos is somehow an inferior person, provided he “only” learns 70% of his available time?! This is a huge machlokes even if he is supported by his heilike parents, in laws, and spouse, before we involve an unsuspecting taxpayer.September 12, 2022 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm #2123848
Once again, you cut off a sentence in the middle and pretend it says something else.
One more time now:
You: My suggestion is for someone to work a little to earn for modest living.”
I responded that someone who actually understands the value of torah would have no reason to follow the “suggestion” of someone such as yourself who prioritizes money and secular education over torah.
You chose to respond as if I said only full time learners have value.
What I said was that torah needs to be valued over money and secular education. Until you do that, you have no business offering “suggestions”.
If you are really just concerned about your torah and the klal as you mentioned, do something about your poor girls who are victims of criminal negligence, learning what priorities?September 12, 2022 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm #2123849
“According to my shita,”
Nuff saidSeptember 13, 2022 12:38 am at 12:38 am #2123860
how many times I need to clarify my question: which acharonim allow using non-Jewish support system for poor people in order to learn – and not just for one person but for whole groups.
As to indeed allowed taking of tzedoka, could you quote in more detail – is it for those of exceptional learning or for anyone; is it for those who can easily support themselves.
I really, really have no questions about self-sustaining learning communities, where some people support others who are learning. This may not be as ideal as having everyone learn and earn a little to sustain themselves, the way Chofetz Chaim did, but quite reasonable. Do we have communities like that? I don’t think it is difficult. A small town of Volozhin was able to sustain 400 students by eating days, without asking Czar for funding.September 13, 2022 2:46 pm at 2:46 pm #2124104ujmParticipant
AAQ: Which Acharonim allowed you to accept or use the non-Jewish cash sent to you by Uncle Sam during the Covid pandemic?September 13, 2022 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm #2124303
> Which Acharonim allowed you to accept or use the non-Jewish cash sent to you by Uncle Sam during the Covid pandemic?
ujm, thanks for giving me an opportunity to review halochos of matonos (that is what it was, right?)
Sources below are from “Halachically speaking” v 16-1 by Kof-K R Moishe Dovid Lebovits. I did not review them yet, feel free to help review them.
it is indeed praiseworthy not to accept gifts!
Rambam Hilchos Zichiyah V’matanah 12:17. Brachos 10b Rashi, Maharsha
S’A C.M. 249:5.
one who avoids presents will definitely avoid stealing
one who accepts presents will constantly want money. Furthermore, one will come to flatter those who give him gifts. If one sees a person who gave him gifts doing something wrong, he will not rebuke him.13 In addition, one who receives gifts thinks that he will live off the gifts and neglects to realize that everything is from Hashem
If one receives a present from a non-Jew, the first reason would not apply in this case since one may not flatter a non-Jew, but the others reasons may still apply. Many are lenient and say that it does not apply to a present from a non-Jew.
Mishneh Halachos 15:215 If someone is lacking and does not have what to live on, he may accept gifts. This did not apply to me, but did presumably to those who lost jobs. Frankly, all jobs were uncertain at the time.
R Belsky (no specific page given): There is no issue with accepting WIC checks from the government as one pays taxes and this is not considered taking gifts. This should kal vehomer apply to Covid funds to those who pay more taxes than getting back.
OK to accept small gifts (Sifsei Chachamim, Bereishis 12:13, Mishneh Halachos 17:137). These checks were definitely way less that what I sent the government.
some other interesting halochos:
If one who is learning wishes to accept money from his parents in order for him to continue learning, there is no issue of soneh matanos.
Any gift a parent gives to a child is not included in soneh matanos. It is considered a mitzvah since giving gifts to one’s child brings the parent and child closer, positively impacting the child.
Even if a woman is careful and wishes not to accept presents during the year from her husband because she does not want to accustom herself to presents, in honor of Yom Tov she may accept presents
Others mention that when the Yevanim ruled over Eretz Yisrael, learning Torah was not allowed. When Klal Yisrael was victorious over them, the children were given money to entice them to learn. Therefore, the custom evolved to give out money on Chanukah
One is forbidden to give a non-Jew a gift. However, if one will benefit from giving the non-Jew a present, it is permitted. Based on this, it is customary to give one’s mailman a present during the non-Jewish holiday season
Additionally, the poskim say that if one has a personal relationship with the non-Jew he may give him a present even if he will not receive any benefit in returnSeptember 13, 2022 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm #2124318
Also, on covid pandemic, as most people and businesses qualified, it is probably not even a gift but a tax refund, or just currency debasement leading to inflation. Not accepting it is like not accepting tax refund or accepting that your money is now worth 10% less. So, this becomes a matana from you to (mostly) non-Jews and this is questionable according to sources I quoted above.
An excuse that the recipient will do something for you is not applicable – do you expect IRS to pick up your phone call faster if you won’t accept the money!?September 13, 2022 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm #2124335
Found an explanation for another point where I was confused whether there are work and income restrictions for various programs. Turns out I am behind the times … March 2020 Covid law included suspension of medicaid income and food stamp work requirements for the time of pandemic (even if states want them)September 15, 2022 1:30 pm at 1:30 pm #2125006
“My suggestion is for someone to work a little to earn for modest living. According to my shita, one should not then go take benefits.”
Your shita? I doubt it. Are you living off of $12,000 a year to maximize your learning? And since when did you get the authority to create shittos?September 15, 2022 3:41 pm at 3:41 pm #2125015
“I would expect an esteemed center in the capitol of Jewish learning to be better at quoting sources than a humble internet poster.”
If this discussion is going to veer into lashon hara, we need to stop it right now. Just because they didn’t answer the question in the way you wanted doesn’t mean they are bad at lomdus. As AviraDeArah and DaasYochid both stated, the Rambam makes two statements that appear contradictory, and the halacha does not follow like you.September 15, 2022 3:42 pm at 3:42 pm #2125017
“how many times I need to clarify my question: which acharonim allow using non-Jewish support system for poor people in order to learn – and not just for one person but for whole groups.”
You keep moving the goalposts. You spent much of this thread decrying learners taking benefits they are entitled to by law by erroneously calling it tzedaka in order to bring in your Rambam. And when AviraDeArah blows this out of the water and shows that later poskim permit even taking mamash tzedaka for learning, you suddenly become a convert to the benefits are not tzedaka cause, and create a new category called “non-Jewish support system for poor people” and demand we bring sources to support THAT! This is rather disingenuous.September 15, 2022 3:51 pm at 3:51 pm #2125072
“so you are saying that a person who expresses himself to these mitzvos is somehow an inferior person, provided he “only” learns 70% of his available time?!”
Nobody has said that as far as I have read. Do you feel as though full time learners look down on you, and that’s why you want to clap back at them? I’m not sure you realize this, but I think everybody who is arguing with you works part or full time. And your vision of Lakewood as a whole “group” full of people learning full time and mooching off the government in perpetuity, and only deigning to teach badly if their learning doesn’t go well, is fantasy. Most learners start working, many after only a few years of learning in kollel.
Here’s where I’m coming from. Torah learning is precious and vital, and there is no comparison between learning an hour a day, or half a day, to full immersion in learning. I say that even though I unfortunately didn’t learn in a yeshiva and I work a full time job. If we are truly concerned about the klal, we should do what we can to support those learning to prolong their learning as much as possible. Just as learners get a share in the mitzvos of honest weights, paying workers on time, etc. via learning those halachos and their details, we workers can get a share in their limud Torah by supporting their learning. Learners deserve our hakaras hatov, not our derision.
Re: Benefits – their intention is to foster healthy families and communities, and inasmuch as Torah learning is the backbone of a healthy Jewish community, than if the benefits help Jews learn Torah than they are fulfilling their purpose even in eyes of the government. Just like if benefits help Native Americans maintain their traditions, help students finish grad school while raising a family, etc. Yes there are those who are politically opposed to benefits for various reasons (redistribution of wealth is bad, the gap between benefits and a livable wage creates dependency, benefits buy votes, etc.), and others who oppose them due to racism or antisemitism and a perception that they disproportionately help the groups they hate. If someone doesn’t like it for political reasons, then his fight is with the laws, not with his fellow citizens, and he can express himself via voting, supporting candidates who hold like him, or running for office himself. If someone’s a racist or antisemite, than whatever, I’m not concerned about chillul Hashem in his eyes – he already hates Hashem. If the benefits go away he’ll find something else to be upset about regarding Jews.September 15, 2022 8:28 pm at 8:28 pm #2125169
> Are you living off of $12,000 a year to maximize your learning? And since when did you get the authority to create shittos?
I did at some point, at exactly that amount actually for a couple of years. Right now, unfortunately, I do not stop at that. My business is such that my success is dependent on the totality of effort and supervision of others, so it is really hard to limit myself, especially as I enjoy what I am doing and, hopefully, bringing something useful to the world. I wonder whether I could work 2 hours a week as you are suggesting if I were in some per hour profession, like a lawyer, a plumber, or a surgeon?! I am afraid that I would not (and most other people are probably in the same position). Feel free to criticize me further or give me hizuk ideas.
re:authority. As with everyone, I get my masorah from my Parents and Teachers. Most of them encouraged independent thinking and asking questions. In a proper way, of course, they’ll correct me if I ask questions in a wrong way. R Steinsaltz z’l used to say that Arabs have 100 synonyms for sand, Eskimos for snow, and Jews – for the word “question”. R Shapiro z’l said that while it is normal for people to learn for many years and only then teach, but, when needed, it is a mitzva for one who learnt alef-beis or chumash or mishna, to teach that (and he actually pointed to a couple of people in the audience who were doing that).September 16, 2022 3:40 pm at 3:40 pm #2125447
Avram > As AviraDeArah and DaasYochid both stated, the Rambam makes two statements that appear contradictory, and the halacha does not follow like you.
right, and this is why I enjoy talking with them. I would like to look further and how these stirahs are resolved. There are other Rambams like that (sleeping 8 hours AND learning at night). What I have a problem with is that the Vaad refers to a Rambam, omitting the other one. Nobody asked them about the Rambam. They could have referred to S’A or to R Kotler. As Gemora says in other circumstances: “this is the Torah and this is the reward?!”. Maybe, they saw this post as a polemic piece and thought that the person who asked a question is the type that gets impressed by Rambams. Maybe a webmaster wrote the piece, not the dayanim. And I went to their site specifically looking for a kosher lomdishe place – a business beis din in the most famoous yeshiva. So, maybe this is just a mismatch.September 16, 2022 3:40 pm at 3:40 pm #2125448
Avram > . You spent much of this thread decrying learners taking benefits they are entitled to by law by erroneously calling it tzedaka in order to bring in your Rambam
If there is a stirah between AAQ and AAQ, go by the later one! He took into account your lomdishe comments and modified accordingly. I am here more to learn from other POVs and discuss ideas with people with different opinions. In R Yohanan’s derech, I’ll go mad from posters agreeing with me.
But I looked up above and I stated at minimum thta I am OK with in-laws and gevirim supporting learning and you stam responded that you don’t believe me.
Where your observation is correct – I do have problems with multiple steps in the justification of the current system, some more questionable than others: taking tzedoka in general when one does not have to, taking tzedoka for learning, taking non-Jewish funds (that I agreed not to call goyishe tzedoka according to R Henneman even if the source is bery brief and not very convincing), taking non-Jewish funds not designated for such purpose (that is, yeshivos taking transportation money v. putting learners on welfare). And I do not make any representation about how widespread each practice is, I am looking at what is kosher and what is yosher (2 separate questions really). Hope this clarifies, but not holding my breath.September 16, 2022 3:42 pm at 3:42 pm #2125474
Avram > If we are truly concerned about the klal, we should do what we can to support those learning to prolong their learning as much as possible.
Thanks for a clear explanation of your position. I totally agree that those who are capable of quality learning, should learn and kahal should support them. Ad kan? One of my teachers was asked to help out a struggling shul on shabbos when he was in yeshiva. He asked R’Y and got an OK for that. The shul then asked him to help on one chol day. R’Y said – no, you need to learn full time, that will make you more useful for them later on. I do think though that too many people are pushed into long-term learning for social reasons and are then upset that they are not successful against this criteria.September 16, 2022 4:50 pm at 4:50 pm #2125482
Avram > than if the benefits help Jews learn Torah than they are fulfilling their purpose even in eyes of the government
I do not think it is kosher to take someone else’s money and decide on our own what is a better way to spend it. This is no different, conceptually, from the communist shitah that they know better than the property owners how to manage it. Government provide funds for English textbooks, and we should take those. They provide transportation and let’s take it, and government has no hesaron if students have Torah classes in addition to English, as cost of transportation is the same. Government gives out child credit, so we can take it. This is different from government (presumably reflecting common sentiment) provide funds to help poor people, and we say, fine, we are not gonna working and use those funds. I do realize there is some politics involved here and, maybe, there are some people who will be happy for everyone to get “helped” but, in my – possibly biased – estimate, most people do not support “welfare volunteers”.
I looked up comments to a WSJ OpEd responding to the NYT article. A Cathlic writer is generally sympathetic to yeshivas and so are many comments. Putting aside occasional anti-semites, who, as you are saying, are always happy to blame Jews and occasional philo-semites, who are happy to give money to Jews, most other comments revolve around getting government funds and performing what is required by that. Most are fine with Jews living their own self-sufficient life and most are not fine with whole communities receiving a lot of government funds to support their own lifestyle.
The article also mentions a relevant Supreme case in 1970s where Amish got away with less number of years at school, saying that their kids work and do not need calculus. Part of the decision looks at the facts – that Amish community is decent and self-sufficient.September 19, 2022 11:13 am at 11:13 am #2126189
“Right now, unfortunately, I do not stop at that.”
“I am afraid that I would not (and most other people are probably in the same position).”
Why then would you advocate for a “shitta” that you openly acknowledge that you cannot follow, nor do you expect the vast majority of the olam to be able to follow? The end result of your advice to “Lakewood” would be a tremendous loss of Torah.
“As with everyone, I get my masorah from my Parents and Teachers. Most of them encouraged independent thinking and asking questions.”
So it’s not that your parents and teachers told you that your family/community shitta is to hold vehemently to a specific Rambam in opposition to how others pasken, but that you can be an “independent thinker” and pasken for yourself?September 19, 2022 11:13 am at 11:13 am #2126191
“right, and this is why I enjoy talking with them.”
But you barely responded to them.
“Maybe, they saw this post as a polemic piece and thought that the person who asked a question is the type that gets impressed by Rambams.”
Exactly what I suggested earlier in the conversation.
“And I went to their site specifically looking for a kosher lomdishe place – a business beis din in the most famoous yeshiva. So, maybe this is just a mismatch. “
I don’t think you’re going to find much of the lomdishe learning of Lakewood on Web sites.September 19, 2022 11:15 am at 11:15 am #2126193
“But I looked up above and I stated at minimum thta I am OK with in-laws and gevirim supporting learning and you stam responded that you don’t believe me. “
I was basing that on a previous conversation on the CR regarding in-laws being compelled to support. It’s very possible that I was having that debate with someone else (maybe CTLAWYER or Gadolhadorah) and my memory erroneously ascribed their posts to you. I apologize.September 19, 2022 11:15 am at 11:15 am #2126195
“This is no different, conceptually, from the communist shitah that they know better than the property owners how to manage it. Government provide funds for English textbooks, and we should take those. They provide transportation and let’s take it, and government has no hesaron if students have Torah classes in addition to English, as cost of transportation is the same. Government gives out child credit, so we can take it. This is different from government (presumably reflecting common sentiment) provide funds to help poor people”
All of these examples are government collecting taxes and distributing funds as they see fit, whether or not the taxpayer agrees. The communist smear can be applied to each and every one of them, but you declare them “kosher.” What makes income based benefits different?September 19, 2022 11:08 pm at 11:08 pm #2126442
Avram > What makes income based benefits different?
First problem – many, maybe not all, income based benefits require or at least presume that the person gets them only if/when he is not able to find work. Details seem to vary by program, presence of children, state, and year, but this is how society generally understands income-based benefits.
2nd problem – Y’D, not just Rambam, paskening not to take non-Jewish charity with wording “not to depend on people”. See precise loshon above.
I am pretty convinced that these questions deserve consideration for specific people and for communities, when it becomes public knowledge, and that answers may be complex and not the same for everyone. I would like to see some sources that explain the permissive position. So far, I found a short line from R Henneman, and a Vaad responsa that we agreed is not a serious source. At least, these mean that there is a question to answer. Please help me with the sources.
Mu inartful/exaggerated communist comparison was about people taking funds and mis-directing them to the purposes the givers did not intend. Government openly making decisions is a normal indirect democracy. We ain’t greeks.September 19, 2022 11:15 pm at 11:15 pm #2126448
> the end result of your advice to “Lakewood” would be a tremendous loss of Torah.
I am not giving advice to “Lakewood”. I can’t even as it is a makom where one of my Rebbes live and I am too scared of him. Even more, I am not questioning, and very much in support, of all post-WW2 yeshiva activities that saved tremendous number of people from assimilation and other yeridot. I am thinking about current state of affairs. If some of my thinking has validity that would lead to the next question – how do we correct the ship without losing the good that is there.
And this is not a new question. Even way back when I was looking for a shidduch, a Lakewood shadchanit was describing to me about girls figuring out that they can become software developers by going to small local colleges, enabling them to support their husbands learning. I don’t think that was a marketing guzma because I was not looking for that.September 19, 2022 11:16 pm at 11:16 pm #2126449
“many, maybe not all, income based benefits require or at least presume that the person gets them only if/when he is not able to find work” no. Unemployment is for people who need work, ergo UNEMPLOYMENT. Medicaid and foodstamps are for people below a certain income per capita under 22ish, and WIC is for children under 5 in families below a certain income per capita. And here’s the kicker! Some of them have college degrees!September 19, 2022 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm #2126457
Syag, I already quoted NJ, IL, TX foodstamp websites and some federal docs (maybe it got lost in mod’s spam?) – TX site is full of references to need to work. Seems like actual fed programs is currently less work-focused based on changes a couple of years ago, I do not remember details already.September 20, 2022 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm #2126619
“many, maybe not all, income based benefits require or at least presume that the person gets them only if/when he is not able to find work.”
Not true. Most benefits are based on income thresholds, which is not the same thing as unemployment. Many households eligible for benefits are indeed working/earning incomes, but the amounts are below the qualifying threshold. See my first response to our $12,000/year tangent above.
“2nd problem – Y’D, not just Rambam, paskening not to take non-Jewish charity with wording “not to depend on people”. See precise loshon above.”
This would seem to also apply to child tax credits, transportation benefits, etc. as well, so it does not answer why you see income based benefits as distinct from these other benefits.
“Mu inartful/exaggerated communist comparison was about people taking funds and mis-directing them to the purposes the givers did not intend.”
I’m not sure you’re applying correct reasoning here. If TANF, WIC, SNAP, Medicaid, et al. benefits are used to provide for the material and medical needs of a family, then they are being directed appropriately. Why the family qualifies for the benefits is not relevant to the purpose of the benefits – just that the family does. An example of misdirected benefits would be someone with a job collecting unemployment, which is fraud.
Your focus in on Torah learners, that they shouldn’t be learning if they collect benefits they are entitled to, but your arguments can be also used to tell janitors and cashiers that they should not marry and have children, or tell wives that they cannot stay home with the kids, etc.September 20, 2022 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm #2126866
Avram, it looks like the core disagreement is whether various benefits are neutral to the desire to work. At one extreme is unemployment that clearly ties into work requirement, at the other – “universal income” that is given to all or just poor people.
I think many benefits are somewhere in between. Our own views may be colored by what learned in the family and around, so let’s look at rules. Here are again quotes from Texas. Other states may be “more generous”.
If a child’s parent or relative gets TANF, the parent or relative must agree to:
Train for a job or look for work. …Not quit a job. Take parenting skills classes. Get vaccines for their child. Make sure their child is going to school.
Most people ages 16 to 59 must follow work rules to get SNAP benefits. Work rules mean a person >> must look for a job or be in an approved work program <<. If the person has a job, they can’t quit without a good reason.
Whether it’s Medicaid, SNAP food benefits (formerly known as food stamps) or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families cash assistance, HHS is helping Texas families >>> get back on their feet. <<<September 20, 2022 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm #2126869
> also apply to child tax credits, transportation benefits, etc. as well, so it does not answer why you see income based benefits
This is a good question. We do generally depend on other people in modern world and it is hard to escape. Obama’s shitah is indeed that an entrepreneur “did not build that” because community provided resources. Indeed, same entrepreneur born in North Korea would rise to smuggling goods from China and we need to be grateful to people who support our lives … My feeling is that Y’D talks about any income-based help as the context is “helping the poor”, but then many tax credits are also income-based. Maybe, it means being in the category where you can take more than you give (see R Dessler defining people as givers OR takers). Maybe someone wants to look for more sources on these or ask a shailoh?
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