Brief Dialogue on Judaism

March 13, 2008

I had an opportunity on Facebook this morning to respond to an inquiry as to the nature of my views on the subject in an especially succinct manner, and so I make it available to you now, for those of you wondering:

Q: I am surprised by your links. Are you a follower of Reconstructionist Judaism? Tikkun and American Council for Judaism reconstruct Judaism along the lines of current liberal thinking.

A: Absolutely Not!!! Mordecai Kaplan sought to reconstruct Judaism in the image of the most wicked philosopher of the 20th century, John Dewey. The ACJ had its origins in resisting the more or less successful attempt of the odious Stephen Wise to do the same to the Reform movement. Still, I don’t totally buy into the ACJ perspective, based as it is on a lot of small-r republican fallacies, which is why I lean more toward the Renewal movement represented by Tikkun. However far on the left they are politically, they are theologically without question on the right half of the non-Orthodox spectrum.

I assure you all, gentle readers, that these subjects shall have extensive coverage on this blog as it develops.

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2 Responses to “Brief Dialogue on Judaism”


  1. John Dewey the “most wicked” philosopher of the 20th century. Come on. Not even in the top 100. Sartre, Heideger, Ayn Rand come to mind.

    Dewey might have been mistaken, may not have not been profound.

    But he opposed fascism and Stalinism, which makes him a good guy.

  2. brooklyncopperhead Says:

    Sartre was a fool with ultimately nominal influence who recanted at the end, Heideger was just a sad opportunist, and frankly if Rand was a “philosopher” than so is Lyndon LaRouche.

    As for opposing Stalinism, Dewey did oppose the show trials but after that and until the end was a solid popular front man – the phrase “totalitarian liberal” which was mostly picked up by the old right was in fact originally Sidney Hook’s moniker in denouncinc Dewey!


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