Popular Articles

An idea can be practical or lofty; if it draws supporters and believers who will dedicate their lives to implement it, the idea can become reality

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Share on print

Click an icon above to share, email, or save this article

An idea can be practical or lofty; if it draws supporters and believers who will dedicate their lives to implement it, the idea can become reality

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Share on print

Click an icon above to share, email, or save this article

Much of scientific thought is the story of men and women who have ideas about reality that they seek to prove so they can put them to work for human betterment. Much of human history is about those who had ideas about existing reality that they believed needed to be changed so it would conform with what they believed it should be. Both approaches have often dictated the story of humankind.

In the former arena I can point to the saga of how humans have harnessed the ideas surrounding electricity to totally re-engineer our world into one which is wired, even if we don’t see the wires any longer. In the latter, the story that Jesus and his disciples offered the world has altered our reality in many ways. And I have my own personal stories to tell.

The era when Rome commanded world events, beginning in 509 BCE, when the last Etruscan King was dethroned, they established, with their Republic, the idea of democracy, but one based on rule only by the wealthy, or the patricians, as they were called. This did not persist and ultimately it was the plebeians, or the ordinary citizens, who achieved the levers of power after about 200 years. This continued until the Imperial period, or for about 250 years.

With the advent of Caesar, imperial rule and the end of democracy indeed became the order of the day. This occurred formally under Caesar’s nephew, the first Augustus, in 27 BCE. Ironically, Augustus was known for his wise rule, rebuilding Rome, reforming government, establishing police and a standing army. He built roads throughout the Empire, and expanded the Empire by conquests in Spain, Gaul and Britain, North Africa and Eastern Europe.  He was the model of the benevolent dictator.

The Empire was split into western and eastern parts in 284 CE. The Western Empire was effectively terminated in 476 CE when Rome fell to German invaders. The Byzantine, or eastern wing, persisted until 1453 CE, when Constantinople was taken by the Ottoman Turks.

The monarchical model for government flowed from the Roman experience for many centuries. The Church sanctified it where it had power by declaring that this model was ordained by God. Yet the Greek model was out there. And “plebe” power was exercised in Rome for centuries.

As a note of information, it was Rome’s agreement with Judah Maccabee in 167 BCE, which sanctioned his revolt against the Seleucid dynasty in his effort to re-establish anew, an independent Jewish state.  There were five Maccabee sons and each one died in the struggle to free Judea, before Hyrcanus, the nephew of one, was crowned in 134 BCE.  Hyrcanus reigned ‘til his death in 104 BCE. However, in 37 BCE, King Herod, the Jewish son of converts, was appointed ruler by Rome after he overthrew the Hasmonean rulers in a three-year war. Herod reigned until 4 CE. (According to the story of Jesus, it was for fear of King Herod that the family fled to Bethlehem following reports of royal agents searching to eliminate the new-born “King of the Jews”.)

In 64 CE, Judea became the Roman province of Palestina. Starting in 66 AD, Rome began to expel the Jewish population in the face of their continuous revolt and struggle for independence. In 70 CE the Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed. Reportedly, a million lives were lost when the city was sacked. A remnant committed suicide at the fortress of Masada, in 132 CE rather than submit to expulsion.

Get thej.ca a Pro Israel Voice by Email. Never miss a top story that effects you, your family & your community

In May, 1948, that state was re-established, turned into a reality through the power of an idea conveyed across almost a hundred generations, almost 2000 years. Not without shedding blood. It is estimated that the Jewish population of the State in 1948 was 680,000. It has been reported that Israel suffered casualties of ten per cent. Discount the children and the aged, ill and infirm. What of the new arrivals from the death-camps of Europe, broken in body and spirit? What of the ultra-religious, awake only to religious observance and study? How many were there to mount a defense against armed militias and the armies of Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Egypt and Iraq?

What Israel had were those who had dedicated their lives to the ideal of a national home for the Jews. They proved to be enough to turn the tide and repel the attackers, turning an idea into reality. It would not be the last battle, but there was never any room to lose any battle on their thin sliver of land.

This last May, 2020, the new state was 72 years old, making it seem like a tree that has been around forever. I was a youngster of fourteen at its birth. That tree has grown from unknown viability of existence to world-wide respect during my lifetime. The idea behind that tree has been watered with centuries of Jewish blood. A high price, but it would take a lot more to uproot it.

A Jewish Homeland was an idea, the spark kept alive for two millennia, and finally achieved after incomprehensible sacrifice in 1948 | Photo: New York Times front page from May 15, 1948

In 1975, I took on the task of challenging the uncontrolled reign of the law of supply and demand. Prices fall when supply is higher than demand and rise when demand is stronger. US producers were driving Canadian producers out of business. The productive power of the U.S. economic engine can drive prices to levels where they dwarf Canadians’ efforts to compete.

Some Canadian politicians at that time had the idea they could carve out a protected market that would cultivate the livelihoods of some 500,000 Canadians in my commodity group, and in other commodity groups, as well. They wanted to do this by creating a strictly Canadian market for their product. They tried, and failed. I was called on to translate that idea into reality.

It took me six months to put in place the logistical and legal machinery to realize that idea. For those people who were facing bankruptcy and the blasting of their dreams of a secure future, it was a miracle. When I turned that disaster scenario into a profitable future for those people, their families and business partners, for them, it was like their Messiah had arrived. And those safeguards are still in place today, almost fifty years later.

I earned the condemnation of my professional peers for tampering with a basic law of economics, not to mention the political noise. I also earned the experience of becoming a public target. But for me it was all about doing the right thing.  It is almost the best thing I have done in my life.

Max Roytenberg is an author, poet and blogger, with many published articles in Jewish periodicals in Dublin, New York, Winnipeg and Vancouver. After a career as an Economist and Executive in the Food Industry, in Canada and abroad, he writes, and lives with his Bride, in Vancouver. He has children and grandchildren in the US, Canada, China and Israel. His last book, “Hero In My Own Eyes”, is available through major booksellers and on Amazon.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Share on print

Click an icon above to share, email, or save this article

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Share on print

Click an icon above to share, email, or save this article

Read More

Thank you for choosing TheJ.Ca as your source for Canadian Jewish News.

We do news differently!

Our positioning as a Zionist News Media platform sets us apart from the rest. While other Canadian Jewish media are advocating increasingly biased progressive political and social agendas, TheJ.Ca is providing more and more readers with a welcome alternative and an ideological home.

We revealed the incursion of anti-Israel progressive elements such as IfNotNow into our communities. We have exposed the distorted hateful agenda of the “progressive” left political radicals who brought Linda Sarsour to our cities, and we were first to report on many disturbing incidents of Nazi-based hate towards Jews across Canada.

But we can’t do it alone. We need your HELP!

Our ability to thrive and grow in 2020 and beyond depends on the generosity of committed readers and supporters like you.

Monthly support is a great way to help us sustain our operations. We greatly appreciate any contributions you can make to support Jewish Journalism.

We thank you for your ongoing support.

Happy reading!

Thank you for choosing TheJ.Ca as your source for Canadian Jewish News.

We do news differently!

Our positioning as a Zionist News Media platform sets us apart from the rest. While other Canadian Jewish media are advocating increasingly biased progressive political and social agendas, TheJ.Ca is providing more and more readers with a welcome alternative and an ideological home.

We revealed the incursion of anti-Israel progressive elements such as IfNotNow into our communities. We have exposed the distorted hateful agenda of the “progressive” left political radicals who brought Linda Sarsour to our cities, and we were first to report on many disturbing incidents of Nazi-based hate towards Jews across Canada.

But we can’t do it alone. We need your HELP!

Our ability to thrive and grow in 2020 and beyond depends on the generosity of committed readers and supporters like you.

Monthly support is a great way to help us sustain our operations. We greatly appreciate any contributions you can make to support Jewish Journalism.

We thank you for your ongoing support.

Happy reading!

cOMING SOON…….

Breaking News

Recent

Features

News

Current Events

Opinions

Politics

Religion

Culture

Memoriam and Obituaries

PodcastS

Terms and Conditions

Privacy Policy

About Us

Advertise with us

contact 

Subscribe Now

Receive the latest in community & international Jewish news direct to your inbox

© 2020 THEJ.CA, All Rights Reserved

Terms and Conditions

Privacy Policy

About Us

Advertise with us

contact 

Subscribe Now

Receive the latest in community & international Jewish news direct to your inbox

© 2020 THEJ.CA, All Rights Reserved

Subscribe Now

Receive the latest in community & international Jewish news direct to your inbox

Terms and Conditions

Privacy Policy

About Us

Advertise with us

contact 

© 2020 THEJ.CA, All Rights Reserved

Previous
Next