Reflecting on the unmasking scandal and the railroading of Michael Flynn by the Justice Department, the COMMENTARY podcast wonders what Barack Obama could have been thinking at the time? Were the last administration’s concerns noble, or at least understandable, but their execution terribly negligent? Or was there something more nefarious at work? Also, we respond to listener emails.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Welcome to the Commentary magazine Daily Podcast. Today's Monday may eleventh, when twenty I'm John backwards, the editor of Commentary Magazine seventy five year old, monthly of intellectual analysis, political probity and cultural criticism from a conservative perspective, we invite you to join us account relaxing the calmer? We give you a few free, reeds and ask you to subscribe with me. As always, so's. You ever know Rossman High Noah. I jump senior right your Christine browsing high Christine. I then,
and senior editor a green while high Abe, I John, ah guys so the depending on where you are and die and how you are living the story of the weekend impossibly of the of the weak and maybe going forward a decisive moment in the election in terms of giving the pudding some meat on the bones of the Trump accusations against the Democratic Party, the Obama, administration and implicitly Joe Biden,
the decision on Thursday to drop all charges against Michael Flynn, the former national security adviser and the release of the many documents by the officer via the director of national intelligence, showing what really does appear to be bad faith collusion and and a at an effort of prosecutors zeal to get Michael Flynn. Even though the FBI agents who had originally interviewed Flynn about king is the conduct it eventually got. Him fired by the Trump administration after three weeks and then indicted by the Us Independent Council that some of the FBI had determined that he had done nothing wrong in January, twenty seven team at that time. This was,
in conclusion that the senior directors of the FBI and very past, Thirdly, Barack Obama himself were happy to hear, and so they wished to pursue it further and discussed essentially discuss whether or not he could be serve entrapped. An interesting how most commonly serve like one of those cop shows. You know a cop show where there's a latino private detective in town and would laugh at the LA or New York, and he only ends up the infilling with one cop like anytime. He goes anywhere to investigate anything is always the same cop or the same police detective who's, his you know who's. There also working the case
somehow Peter struck deep, the senior ranking official of the F B, I seemed basically to have been earned the just where it seems to just been everywhere in every story that involves what appears to be malfeasance by the bye thee, just department and the FBI in its hungry pursue an m or in its hungry pursuit of the Russia Investigation against Trump and not just Peter struck, but also his paramour LISA page. So we have more emails and texts between them suggesting conversations about how to basically further their pursuit of of trump officials. What did you say? It's one of those remarkable arms republic turns where the very thing that the Obama administration was accusing the Trump campaigner. Of this subversion of the room
of law- and I don't you know- due process, whatever hours of undermining our system in their pursuit of of proving that they are, they have come close to doing the very same. I mean this idea now that the former president, that Burma is now saying, as you said over the weekend, honour unrecorded call that Flynn now bird dropping the case against, when is it is is the threatens our rule of law. That is a strange sort of around the dictatorial having his. He doesn't have any power anymore, but this sort of one man at the top calling calling for you know
rub, a reversal of the of what actually happened or or ruining the worthy the the system, as it worked right well, according to what we, what people been able to piece together about what was going on in the rivers of the Flynn, interview or whatever was with Flynn, and the FBI was, I think, in January force. There is certainly it's that oh bomber do more about this than we were led to believe, since he was the one who informed the number two person and the Justice Department Sally Eights, the one who was gonna be who was acting attorney general out when the administrations changed and before just sessions was confirmed, as attorney general, that that oh bomber brought up the Flynn Matter to Sally eight who was according to her as a camera, who, with surprise right. I was surprised to hear about this. She didn't know about it, which means somehow that the White House knew about this. But
senior leadership of the justice department- did not and what was it Obama new in detail. He knew the contents of Flint call with russian Ambassador Kisyak right now. We know why Obama knew the com so me that's a week we can pieced together pretty there without some worrying about being unfair and circumstantial evidence, We know that Obama's national Security adviser Susan Rice in still on the? What what is called the unmasked king of the identity of the person who was on the phone with kiss we act was obviously Kingsley acts. Phone traffic was being monitored by the CIA. Worthy asked me or whoever it is a monitors, fun traffic and it is against the law in general. It is against the rules U S, citizens to be identified in such surveillance, because it is illegal to sir.
No. You are citizens in this way. For there is a there is up. There can be split, a specific request me to unmask the identity of that citizen is the identity of that citizens should be materially important, and so Susan Rice asked for the and asking fat and out that Michael Flynn was the person who was on the phone calls Kisyak, so we knew that we knew that three years ago and as I recall when we start talking about this on the podcast three years ago,. Are then colleagues or a memory? And I and a couple you know, but we were. We were a nerve by the fact that there had been this. I'm asking why why why, was it necessary right and the only reason that it could be? Sorry was the presumption or the fear that there was that there was a a russian agent working for Trump
in some fashion anyway, so we know that so we didn't know was the tools and rice apparently went to a bomb and told Obama saw a bomb a new. We also know that, before the election Obama, the abandons were concerned about russian interference and whether or not trump in Russia with whether or not there was trump campaigns armed with Russia, and then one of the questions after election was a. Why didn't Obama say anything like why if he was so concerned that the Russians were amount unprecedented fashion, compromising an american political him? why did he say anything and no one has ever had a good answer that question, except for the idea that all that they never really thought Trump could win, and They didn't want to raise the prospect of something that bad when it really wasn't going to matter or could have boomerang, or it could have been the sort of thing that couldn't you know, create the conditions under which, from could say that Obama was interfering in the election, but now we know that it. Maybe he was
Fraid action, but did he was interfering the highest levels or putting his finger on the scale when it came to be issue of who tromp was gonna have as its national security vice right. I did this there's one other interesting thing that I think emerge from this report and call that was linked to Yahoo NEWS. Is it about always using the word perjury, which Think is, is you know that? So I think when most people here perjury they think, while this is terrible, this guy admitted he perjured himself. This is awful. Our attorney general is is endorsing perjury by dropping these charges, but he wasn't emit technically. He will actually wasn kinda found guilty of any perjury with you is just found it did he lied to the FBI and The other irony is that, of course, the D. The argument is, he should be admitted to you lied to the FBI. Venetian have been asked this question in the first place, which I am merely Let me recall, go racing back to the ninety nine days, which was eggs.
We both gluttons defence for his pressure here, which was. I should never been asked that questions of the fact that I lied about. It means it, but I do think that there is these. The Obama legacy factor here shouldn't be downplay right. This is this is not. This does not make about Obama and his advisers look very good, regardless of whether you think Donald Trump and his advisers bet have behaved well, any If you set aside the conspiracy theorizing on both sides about what's going on here, you know his his involvement at this point right before an election and waiting into this, It seems ill timed, especially considering how how he's room in the above the fray. For so long. I find the timing of this curious. I think we should also mention that a lot of the public's knowledge of what happened here- initially about the masking in and some of the other Flynn stuff came through leaked reports that were,
from obviously from Obama administration officials to places like the Washington Post, which then received, I think they perceived a Pulitzer for their for their coverage of it There is a lot of communication traffic going back and forth between you know newspapers. The Post and Obama administration officials that we should also be reexamined, because there was a fair amount of credulity given by these supposedly you know, did democracy dies and darkness journalists towards what they were being fed from the administration Noah, where? What do you think is the general proposition of how the political, blameless, be apportioned here. Is there going to be any we consideration of de how this was handled on the part of liberals and
liberal journalists or a mainstream journalism was bought. Her glance incur the idea that the trunk campaign and the term presidency were being suborned in some fashion by Russia, and that Flynn was the tip of the iceberg. Here, probably not. I haven't seen much to his credit eyes. I saw how refinement, whose one of the more vocal the surfers critics of the transition team, the Trump Administration transparently and say, as looks like this guy and at a pretty raw deal by the FBI's conduct, and we should re evaluate accordingly, but I think that's all I've seen that not the sailors it's on out there. It's just. I haven't seen it that fact different known fact, I've. I've overwhelmingly seen pieces saying that the this reversal of the case is is the great injustice and that that you know Flynn was she should have been charged and that this is this is the subverting of of the
of law, and what not I mean, really miss aid that what then, that the Trump ages that nothing is ever actually resolved unit above both sides of every fight go on fighting, despite whatever turns up? Well, there's two forces at work here that probably prevent anybody from going forward with any kind of like reeling, respecting and and a critical re evaluation of the facts of twenty sleet TWAIN, sixteen early twenty seventeen is a pensions matter more than results on the left intentions are always pure and just and even if the methods fail to meet them, the intentions. Are valuable in an of themselves and have some sort of a weight that should supersede. Any kind of criticism of the conduct and achieving them second of the inability or the least
the lack of any rewards for anybody who endeavours to keep to counter veiling thoughts in their head at the same time as we talked about on Friday, as I maintain that Mr Flynn was handed very raw deal by the FBI was railroaded and was then a grave injustice. At the same time, I don't think he's a good guy, I think he's worth lionize and I think he exhibited at the very least profoundly poor judgment. We should disqualify him from the position to which he was selected to serve and keeping those two thoughts in your head seems like a very difficult task, particularly for people whom really cut and dried narratives with unassailable protagonists and irredeemable antagonists. Done that, so that between those two contentions one
less intentions were valuable and trying to keep this guy out of the position that he kept, even if they misuse the levers of justice in pursuit of that objective and to the inability to balance the two claims that everybody acted poorly in this situation. Will a combined to indemnify democrats of any misconduct ahead in the name of that, in the name of or at least in the press, in the conservative press. Obviously, it's a very good scenario phenomena, and maybe how refinement
is a leading indicator, but a kind of doubt it okay. So let me proposed two different theory is one: is that what the Obama ice were doing during the transition was done with patriotic and ten, that is to say, they genuinely believed they panicked. They genuinely believe that something terrible it happened and that the country needed somehow to be protected to the extent possible from a Russian take over of the presidency, and so they did what they did for misguided positive reasons to help the country. That's that's one way of looking at it. However, when the facts change or when the facts come out, you are supposed to be able to change with them so
If it turns out that it is not the case that the Trump campaign in the Trump presidency were governed by Russia, then you shouldn't continue to act as though the Trump campaign than the Trump presidency were governed by Russia and defend things that you dead or implicitly defend things that you didn't things that you said in ways that you acted in furtherance of this discredited theory. You should be happy It turns out that you were wrong and to move on from there, that's one. The second is that there is going to always be a shadow over all of this, because Flynn Plant guilty. Now you can make people plead guilty when they are innocent things, that as part of how the plea bargain process works and in the event that that you tell people like make a deal, even if you think get up off, because your suit your safer taking our de l than you are risking going before a jury.
Secondly, also there is this finance of playing hardball with high profile cases where- and I can tell you personal family experience. I'm not going to go into great detail where new words, actively threatened with personal bankruptcy, family bankruptcy. All of that, unless you count UK, even you do what is prudence which, as you cop to a very minor offence for something because they want your scalp and they get your scout, and then you do that new basically have to live with the consequences, and it seems pretty clear that is what Flynn Flynn was either convinced he was going broke. He had no money, they were talking pursuing his son and He was convinced, I think, by his own water at the time that he really didn't have very much up. Didn't have many options to save himself from this.
You know, sir, but Bulger smashing into his life and his family. He changed lawyers, his second lawyer said: no, we can get you added s and tat, so he also may have gotten bad legal advice. However, he plead guilty. They drop charges against them. Getting out. There's been all this. Talk about how this has never happened before it's never happened before that we dropped a case. It's unprecedented. Well, that's not true. The case against cellular TED Stevens in which there was a guilty plea, was dropped by the when it was clear that the Justice Department had materially has behaved in the pigs say there is precedent. Be there is no precedent to pursuing the dash. The incoming national security visor of the United States for having it Conversation on the phone with the russian ambassador with member states are acting as though such an event. Such behaviour rose. The level of a criminal act
alright, alright, alright, now in criminal act, unless you presume that that those contacts were in fact espionage contacts which, since what Flint and apparently said, Can we act on these cause? Was the Obama administration has thrown out thirty five russian diplomats in response to russian medal? in the election. Do not retaliate where It is an incoming administration, we're gonna, reset policy. Please do retaliate against the United States. Give us time we're gonna come in will deal with this with you. Therefore, what Flynn dead in the phone call will serve the interests of the United States by saving get out of thirty five american diplomats from being expelled from Russia in December. Twenty sixteen how's that an active espionage. They knew what he had sat on the call. That's the part of this
that is so upsetting to me is that this is apparently what was on the call. We know this is not what was on the four hundred and five calls, and yet they still pursued him, and apparently Obama knew this as well, so bad weather, the one of the things that I think is worth under ending about which we know it was saying earlier in particular about how it's difficult for people to sort of have a more nuanced view of both. All all sides of this discussion is that there is something really kind of uniquely awful Donald Trump attacks institutions, including the ones that he is there. Clearly in charge of so I do think I mean the deep state conspiracy theory stuff taken Panicstream is bad for all of us, it's bad. If we cannot have faith in our and in law enforcement right, I mean we've seen this deserves version of this on the far progressive left to which says you know all two terrible and raises all you know that it they're all against us. It's it's awful and
think, there's a version on the populist right that embraces that message to and that's a dangerous message, because we have to be able to say will you can have episodes, and this is clearly one of a more specific FBI. Agents behaved abominably and by the way, shout out for calling her name may paramour, since the APC vote we can no longer use the term mistress? But there is a there. There is a temptation, two demonize, the an entire institution when you have a couple of bad actors, so I do think that the push back against very, very vehement trumped supporters to do. That is fair because I dont we want to believe that the FBI is completely functional organization, even if it has had some missteps in this case, but because, like now, the Obama administration loaded because it's been it's been a while, since I've had the opportunity to do that, I was reminded
and when you were saying how this is like gum serve, earnest pursued that went wrong and and wasn't adjusted in the course of events. Isn't that, though, sort of fitting signal of the Obama administration in this is always that the problem with with what they did because they would pursue things with a kind of theological zeal and never change course. Despite What was happening on whether that is their policy, I don't know, daylight on Israel or pulling out of IRAN or ignoring ISIS or war, who knows Eminem long thinking of foreign policy things, but there was a kind of stubbornness despite the facts, while the media often said I'm only and end the administration was willing to
serve learn as went along an end alter its course, but it but character. Logically, the that Ministration never really didn't. I think this is the sort of the final dapple of that where either Today you have the former president sort of keeping up this pursuit of Flynn after the fact what I think the other thing that there's an aspect of this, which is the deep state theory is that buried, but inner serve like burrowed into the government. Is a government within the government that is pulling the levers at sea now how Sir Humphrey? Yes, minister, it's not the guys that you will act, it's not the faces that you see it's invisible bureaucrats by the thousand to arm you, no control,
living things in a bad way. That is not the story here. The story that we're seeing is that this is emerging, that this was a high level open batter of pursuit to try to make this case on the part of the president of the United States, with his national securing visor informing the acting attorney general of Things that were going on that she did not know about ok, so that's the pre staggering thing it is not the price on the clerk, as as as it was referred to, you know in the early twentyth century. It's not that it's not deserve the faceless people it but you know, and so therefore, funnily enough Trump missed the target and it would end. The other thing is that it wasn't that he's wires
being tapped. If you remember him say his wires were being tat, it was, but it was his national security adviser. Somebody's wires were being tat to turn that it wasn't him, but it might as well have been him, and so you know some of these accusations it turns out, are corrected just that he his target was off is on going to say, and that- and I would say, Obama showed a certain degree of cowardice, more a certain degree of cowardice or cowardice and damn and complacency. If he believed that all this terrible stuff was happening, and he did not blow the whistle publicly. What possible defence does he have three or four years later in essentially implicitly saying? Yes, you know this was a run, a sham campaign and Flynn pled guilty to egg. He deserves whenever he gets it out. She had a responsibility if he knew what he do to go before the american people and say better, not
these people, because they're dangerous or to come out in December, and they look on President knighted states where it's at this is a very strange time Warner in. But I'm going to tell you right now, there's some bad behavior going on the part of the end coming from people you better watch out for, but he didn't do that. Instead, use the levers of thee. He essentially attempted to put into motion the levers of the prosecutor. Boreal system of the federal government, and did so were essentially tried to do that and now here we are with with a railroaded prosecution. Some kind of aid. In order to call it, I mean a welfare prosecution and up and a kind of indication, although again splendid raptly guilty whenever that their political consequences of this are
the diminution of american faith in institutions generally, which appears deserve their less politically destructive. Then the idea that Barack Obama would unilaterally declassify this intelligence to it. He was privy of Andrew to intervene in american political life, like that in an impressive did way and then turn out to be wrong. I mean
now I dont explosive to the point of I don't know if we were never recover, so there really was burning options available. So so, let's put it fair enough to accept. Let's put it this way, so it's ok for him until he breaks the rules. He is share, ring and asking information all over the place, apparently and which is literally nobody's business. And you know that's ok, so he is so he he. He acts as though what he knows- and this is by the way- was typical of how this went in the public discourse four to two and a half years, which is you don't know what they now mothers painting the Sistine chapel. You can't see it because Europe you're not on the scaffolding about the topic. When it's all revealed you will see, the world grew
this portrait of Soviet in full russian insolence and all of that in up in an unbelievably beautiful full scale picture. So any individual thing you say add enough. That looks quite right. You just don't also you better. Keep your mouth shut until it's all done. Well, so you kept your mouth shut and then Molly came out and said I got nothin. I mean staggered nothing. He said in the second part of the report that you know he couldn't prove and there were ten instances of of trumps obstructing no potential obstruction of justice, although it was only obstruction of justice with no underlined crime, since in the first party, couldn't say that there was any underlying offence or anything that suggested that the Trump people were actually in the paper in the service of the russian government. So there was all this like you're, not to say this is going badly or you're. Just a lunatic freak conspiracy We fear addled conspiracy, theorist. Well, you know what now that's wrong. We now know that in the
interviews with the house with shifts, has intelligence committee that all of these officials who were going on EM assemblies in other networks, saying that it was likely clapper and Evelyn Farkas and others that it, you know that we are about to see the most outrageous on masking up up of Anne S by and large haste in the history of the country and that they literally knew nothing about it? That in fact they were using their expertise to suggest that they knew they had knowledge. They could not really share openly that that trouble was on the way for the train on people, and then it turned out that they had no now that was all they were just you know, full of hot air blather ring for the purposes of you know the attacking the truth that the trumpet ministers, which is bad and out, gotta stop for asylum, because I want to talk to you guys about expressively, p m because being stuck in home these days, you probably don't much of their privacy on your own home network fire up in
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what did they do us, her temperature check on the high costs were talking too much about covert and all that, and so we got some interesting responses, and I wanted to ask you whether we should respond lots of just collectively, and there is a body of opinion of the responses are very nice for the overwhelming part, and we thank you very much for your patronage and your listening to us in your kind words, but there, one two interesting things? One one is this idea that we are to New York and EAST Coast centric, and we need perspectives from the rest of the country and it's not fair and where were to your eccentric. So anybody have anything you want to say about that perspectives. Well, I'd like to leave, but I am unfortunately, a prisoner in the world's greatest.
Opener penal institution as other very little that I can do about that unfortunate and I too deep offence to some of those New York Centric comments, as I am proud creature of the swamp here in Washington DC and clear. I'm not represented the inside the belt way that the hideous incestuous inside the Pele perspective enough. So I'm gonna bring more of that to the bug I also comes. I also felt its slightly on just criticism, because our main serve the thing we ve been emphasis here. Is that this? What is right for York is not right for everybody, in that. You know that that you know that then the country as a whole should move towards opening up. You know it's not like we have been saying You know, I think it a more New York Centric view would be
Oh my god, the virus has us under siege. Everything must be locked out everywhere, which is absolutely not where we ve been. I will say, though, there are probably some things that we don't. If, if we, if you live in an urban area long enough, there things you forget about me, I grew up in a knot. Particularly develops area mean it was seated BT type saint. Florida, and there are things about life daily life. There now that is quite different. Still from my daily if in a city, so I do think that I'm sure we have made comments that that strike people who don't living in densely populated environments, is odd or out of touch or what not, but I agree with Abe. I do think that a lot of what we see going on on the east coast in particular is not. It is the very opposite of what a lot of money should be doing, and I hope that the emphasis is our emphasis has been on. We ve talked a lot about federalism, but local solutions are often
be the best ones for these sorts of crises, and I, as I still think that I mean there's, I mean why this is so there's so much luck involved in all of this that there's no. There is no effective policy that you can implement. I feel like anywhere I mean a high o lockdown as early as the capacity the Paragon of Loch Downs is a highly governor, Michael I'm, and done that this help expert who, with whom he is he's constantly near his rescued in and the entire legislature, is now this new republic. Unless let us let legislature is trying to decouple this relationship in legislation, it has become quite onerous and all their efforts aside in either case load, has gone up and nobody's here you know why, because it is the strictest lockdown provisions. America. Meanwhile, you have places like Georgia, which opened up to two substantial criticism across the country and has not seen a spike in then in the intervening two weeks,
and why I ate it's hubris to suggest anybody knows the answer. We just don't. You know we. There is a bias, I think, among three of the four of us, which is that through the forest have children under eighteen. So I about almost sixteen year old, a thirteen year old, the nine year old, Christina sport test. Fourteen year old twins, not one has a five year old in a three year old, so we are by Yes to some extent, based on the experience of having children who were at home, living under the regimes in which school has been canceled and if you are not in that place, where a lot of the people who listen to us, though their kids are grown or what are You may not understand, because has never really happen to you unless you were home literally a judge from school or by choice what it means to have your children, home day after day during the school year, with
our being able to socialize without being able to see friends without being able to go out with a playground without being able to you now. Off steam, go to a movie. Anything like that at the hothouse nature of it is genuinely unprecedented and there are seventy five million jobs. Turn under the age of eighteen in the United States and their you know. I don't know how many of them, probably eighty to ninety percent of Them- don't have school that have had school, canceled and that is an extreme and serious new thing and creates pardon said. It is very hard for people who do not have that
I described line. So here is that how I mean this weekend, which was we did our first birthday parade? So if you know what that is, that's when the host of what would have been a birthday party for a young child invites the what would have been of people who participated member. Day to get in the car is, and in just sort of dry by real, slowly and wave and drop off presence, and it was an absolutely soul. Crushing experience typified by my too children, just wailing bawling out of the anxiety and sadness for the fact that they didn't understand why they couldn't see their friends. It's not a suitable replacement for birthday party right now. You know last
We also had this thing where you guys all talked about your lives in your histories and allowed people to get to know you in there some joking about how I should you know. I should Deb return the favor and be part of this, and I think they're serve enough about me in the public print, some of it not really very friendly by the way, if you go my name, including a really nasty peace, York magazine from like twenty years ago. That has many errors in it, but nonetheless is there You know, I don't want it. So I figured you know you got. You had enough there's enough ways: find out about me. You don't need to do this, but but we did get an interesting letter that brings up something about my. My family, my wife's family history, I wanted to go in, took us. It also deals with some of these issues a listener. Silly retired woman living in Hebrew. City Utah, say,
they traveled around after they retire. Then they listened to very much enjoyed the commentary podcast until the one where you lamented the inability for kids to go away to Camp and Christine, talked about losing money on her child school trip to Europe. I thought maybe the radio had switch to NPR stop whining about these types of things, while so many people are losing their jobs, their businesses their homes and their freedom. I don't mind you time with the virus all the time just notes on affecting the rest of the country as it is in the New York area, So she then says you chose to live, New York area. So I'm sorry you're locked in, but we got out Chicago and the bay and move someplace. Where people not only drive it demand their freedom. First of all. If I didn't live in New York and we didn't live in New York, we wouldn't be working at Commentary magazine and doing this pocket asked that sport commentaries Bay, it's where offices, where toys and paste and I suppose in the future, may be weakened
visit this choice and do something else, but at that? Is that that that was not deemed to be necessary until the last couple of months, and so, if it weren't ass, it would be somebody else talking about it and we would be living elsewhere, not doing there. So you know it's slightly interesting complained to say that we, you know it's like saying, look if you're going to work at Ford Motor, you chose to know who chose to live in Detroit, then one thousand, nine hundred and sixty two so don't complain about you know living there. Work for works, afford inadequacy was nowhere else. The work for four it accepts in Detroit if it was nineteen sixty two anyway, but I didn't want. It sounds like you're contemplating a satellite office in Miami, though an undoubted on that too, can I just correct one real quick thing to it. Does am extremely lavish to say. Oh I'm lamenting my kids trip to Europe, but my kids go to public school. This was a public school sponsored group trip that because we're going on that many parents, we all scrimped and saved in order to afford to to send our kids on
oh again, like I can I get that she her response was what a bunch of a lead us. But in fact you know, the public school population of parents have are Kelly Middle to upper middle class and some working class and everybody who sent their kids on these trips, it was it was a strategy. As you eating you forego another trip or vacation or a lot of other things to give her kids this one like I'm experience, so there there's maintenance in France or get good, and I wanted to talk a little about summer cabinets we're gonna get into a little bit of of of aught about agriculture. So, yes, my kids oh to a summer camp. They do not go to summer camp with elitists on the east coast. They go to a summer camp in North Central Wisconsin, Camper compromise, a jewish camp was started. Nineteen, forty, seven or nineteen free- I'm sorry, I can't remember- or which- and it was started by the current by by the conservative movement- others
jewish conservative movement in the United States as part of a general trend in America in the first half of the twentieth century. Toward at Start Milly the Nineteenth century, what what was called the capping movement, which was kids growing up in cities? cities were as suddenly they are again a nest of dizzy, particularly in numbers a nest of disease and malnutrition and terrible conditions of heat No possibility of air conditioning or much relief from the heat and all of that but there is severe the kids, had to be brought taken out of the city and give them some experience of fur. Share exercise at, and maybe some
oral reformation cause, they wouldn't be just hang around in the streets getting into trouble and that this, the capping movement was very serious thing and by its partially, where the boy scouts lot of what we think of and its institutions that have either been important. In furthering of you now, trout, Bible, Camp study camps, all act on a thing came out of this having movement, though, that jewish camping movement, which wasn't started by roused by the but was also part of the effort to give kids a grounding in their their faith to live among Jews, get out a couple of months to get exercise is to get help to and then were as is it was about to be born and then was born to instil the values of the jewish state to teach Hebrew so that kid's, my
If they wanted to earlier and moved it, they would have the skills to do so to revive the part of the project was revive Hebrew as a as up as the spoken language, and that was not just gonna happen in Israel, but maybe elsewhere and and so the cat, was started in nineteen forty seven and it is a very important camp in my life, because
my in laws burden Bobby come on net at Roma. They were both Chicago ends. My father in law was a councillor. My mother in law was a camper. They were, I think, three or four years pardon age. They ended up starting to date and my father in law then made camping his life. He became a rabbi and he has a phd in education and he went after a certain period of time, getting his dedication and began to run. This camp remains constant, ran it for a better part of it decade more than a decade and then end up becoming the national director of the Rock house, of which I think there are now ten is woman in Wisconsin. There's there too in California, others, one in Georgia, there's one of the Poconos there's one the Berkshires there's one in Canada
there's a programme and is real any weathered the there's. This is eight. This is a major effort to inculcate jewish values to have to make it possible for joy. To remain Jews as they get older to their faith and their people had to something positive and cheerful and uplifting in a bid to do what it did. For my inlaws which to introduce them to other Jews to marry and therefore have jewish children. Who will then themselves maybe go to compromise and have this experience again and again, my wife person to her brother all went to the camp and my children and my brother in law was enough. The ruins of this camp, not only that, but my mother's parents rose and carry rose and fell from Saint Paul Minnesota in nineteen
Forty six were among the founders of another jewish camp in North Central Wisconsin about an hour or two from Roma called Hurtful, which was also started as a scientist camp in relations I and this values I it has been functioning as has become offer more than seven decades. It is still. There is still valid still vital. It is not a privilege But these are not centres where privileged people go to ride horses and they study date. They have they pray three times a day. They They bring in the Sabbath and live without electronics and have classes in Hebrew will end in Torah and all sorts of things like that. The removal
of this camp experience for the dam for the summer is not just because they won't have anything to do and do they could really have a lot of fun. It is a tragedy, it is eight tragedy, because the project, the larger project that has been one of the things that has kept the conservative movement from dying out entirely. The project has been in Rapid aware appears it has not. We were not entirely sure that camp is not happen, but Probably isn't. The project is being interfered with materially the larger it logical, religious moral project and So I really did want to serve offer this. This is a very interesting suggestive moment for me, because You know that this is something to which my family, my, what vice family, have been committed for. You now.
Eighty it out for going on seventy five years or longer and so It's not just you know. It's not club med, and it's not. You know it's not camp Northstar from the Peoples movie, where you content, kill your own bear it's something deeper and larger so that's my rams and then I guess, we'll love will love, will close out from here hats intact, problems day. So maybe if we get, those resolved will have will have in easier and sunny or time tomorrow, so for Christine Abe and know. I'm John Podhoretz keep the.
Transcript generated on 2020-08-03.