Jewish Insider's Daily Kickoff: July 29, 2016

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Former mayor of New York City Michael Bloomberg addresses delegates on Day 3 of the Democratic National Convention at the Wells Fargo Center, July 27, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Former mayor of New York City Michael Bloomberg addresses delegates on Day 3 of the Democratic National Convention at the Wells Fargo Center, July 27, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.Credit: Robyn Beck, AFP
JI Staff

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DRIVING THE CONVERSATION: "For Trump and Bloomberg, Cordial Ties Have Soured" by William Neuman: "Listening to Michael R. Bloomberg rage about Donald J. Trump in his speech at the Democratic National Convention this week — labeling him a public menace and hinting that he was not quite sane — it would be easy to think that the two billionaires had a rift going back many years. But in all their time in New York City, their interactions have been limited, yet cordial, according to people who know both of them. “As a former Republican presidential campaign manager told me, Hillary has some baggage, but Trump is crazy,” said Kevin Sheekey, who was involved in Mr. Bloomberg’s explorative bid. “And you can’t fix crazy.”" [NYTimes]

TWITTER WARS -- Donald Trump tweets: 
""Little" Michael Bloomberg, who never had the guts to run for president, knows nothing about me. His last term as Mayor was a disaster!" [Twitter]

Howard Wolfson trolls Trump: "Trump: "We miss Michael. There's a big difference, you notice? Everyone's talking about it." [Twitter]  "Donald Trump Praises 'Brilliant' Mayor Bloomberg For 'Putting His Money Where His Mouth Is' On Guns" [Twitter]

HEARD LAST NIGHT: “Clinton Warns America Faces ‘Moment of Reckoning’” by Molly O’Toole: “On Thursday, she didn’t downplay the anxiety that has marked 2016 election in the wake of a spate of terrorist attacks from Baghdad to Nice to Orlando and globalization trends that have left sizable portions of the American electorate behind economically. Yet she rejected the pessimism Trump portrayed last week in Cleveland, quipping that he’s taken the GOP from the Reagan-era optimism of “‘Morning in America’ to ‘Midnight in America.’” “He wants to divide us — from the rest of the world, and from each other,” she said. [ForeignPolicy]

Hillary Quote: 
“I’m proud that we put a lid on Iran’s nuclear program without firing a single shot — now we have to enforce it, and keep supporting Israel’s security.” [Transcript]

“How Hillary Clinton Soothes Israel Backers at Convention — by Stressing Daylight With Barack Obama” by Nathan Guttman: “The convention managed to keep controversies over Israel under wraps and away from public eye. Moving forward, the Clinton campaign will continue stressing the language of the platform, not the internal battle that preceded it. Laura Rosenberger, the Clinton campaign’s foreign policy adviser in charge of Middle East affairs, said that if elected, Clinton will fulfill her promise of inviting Netanyahu to the White House in her first month in office.” [Forward]

Rory Cooper, a Republican who worked for Eric Cantor: “The Democratic speeches so far have done a very good job of co-opting Republican language on exceptionalism and patriotism. But the absence of any mention of ISIS or how to deal with it has been a glaring error for the Democrats. The disaffected voters who could be open-minded to Clinton consistently rank that as an issue very important to them.”[NYTimes]

CONVENTION RECAP: "The Quiet Existential Crisis Of Moderate Democrats In Philadelphia" by Evan McMorris-Santori and John Stanton: "If you look hard, you can find the moderate Democrats here. Hillary Clinton is a candidate Democrats like those Democrats like. But her convention is one they don’t love. Philadelphia looks a lot more like a Bernie Sanders policy conference than it does a 1990s Bill Clinton Democratic Leadership Council, tie-dye-under-oxford-shirt celebration. “The problem is, we’re no longer really having a conversation about left and right. We’re having a conversation about up and down between populists and non-populists. And they’re just not a part of that,” said Mo Elleithee. Elleithee, a former communications director for the Democratic National Committee, bluntly warned that as for moderates’ hopes that Clinton will make significant moves to the center following the convention, “That’s not gonna happen.”" [BuzzFeed]

RITZ SCENE: "After Lying Low, Deep-Pocketed Clinton Donors Return to the Fore" by Nicholas Confessore & Amy Chozick: "In the vaulted marble bar of the Ritz-Carlton downtown, wealthy givers congregated in force for cocktails and glad-handing as protesters thronged just outside to voice their unhappiness with Wall Street, big money in politics and Mrs. Clinton herself. “This is a good place to be — for a lot of reasons,” said former Gov. Charlie Crist of Florida, a Democrat now running for Congress, as he glided through the room on Tuesday. “We must have set up five fund-raisers today. This is the bank.” 

"While protesters marched in the streets and blocked traffic, Democratic donors congregated in a few reserved hotels and shuttled between private receptions with A-list elected officials. If the talk onstage at the Wells Fargo Center was about reducing inequality and breaking down barriers, Center City Philadelphia evoked the world as it still often is: a stratified society with privilege and access determined by wealth." [NYTimes "Hedge-Fund Money: $48.5 Million for Hillary Clinton, $19,000 for Donald Trump" [WSJ]

SCENE YESTERDAY: Senator Ben Cardin and his wife, Myrna, were honored at a brunch organized by Ari Mittleman and the Philadelphia Orchestra at the Union League of Philadelphia. The event celebrated cultural diplomacy and included Ambassadors, Minister and Parliamentarians from five continents. Sen. Chuck Schumer joined Rep. Steny Hoyer alongside JI-ers Greg Rosenbaum, Howard Friedman, Marc Winkelman, Tara Brown, Josh Hantman and numerous national Jewish leaders. According to a source, Senator Schumer called Senator Cardin a 'mensch' and had the room "in stitches." [Pic]

“Howard Dean to FL Jews: Time to Schlep Your Grandkids to the Polls” by Jacob Kornbluh:“We have to get the vote out, it’s really critical. Florida is a state that we must win,” Dean said in remarks to a mostly senior and middle-aged crowd of Jewish Democrats at a DNC-hosted event on Thursday. “Remember when Sarah Silverman [was quoted] as saying, especially to the people of Florida, ‘Tell your bubbe, tell your zaide: get out and vote in Florida’? Now you have to do that to them. You have to tell your grandchildren, ‘Okay, you made us vote for Obama, now you have to go out to vote for Hillary Clinton.”[JewishInsider]

HEARD YESTERDAY: “Israel reiterates support for a two-state solution amid GOP shift” by Michael Wilner: “Speaking at a lunch on the sidelines of the Democratic National Convention, Dermer– a close confidante of the prime minister– said that Israel "is prepared to have a negotiated settlement." "He believes the best solution is a demilitarized Palestinian state" recognizing the Jewish state, Dermer said, responding to the change in Republican language. But he added: "I think the overarching principle here is to respect the sovereign decisions of a fellow democracy. Dermer offered praise and thanks for the Democratic presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, who brokered a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas in Gaza while she was secretary of state.  "I give her a great deal of credit for what she was able to do at that time," Dermer said. "Things could have gone very bad." [JPost]

MOU: “The ambassador indicated he felt current negotiations over a new memorandum of understanding that would provide a more robust security package to the Jewish state could be concluded “in the next few weeks.”” [ToI]

“Obama 'Not Generous Enough' in Military Aid Talks With Israel, Says Lindsey Graham” by Barak Ravid: “Last week, Graham visited Israel and met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The prime minister said he was unhappy with both the level of aid the Obama administration was offering in the new deal and the conditions the administration was attaching to it. But he also told Graham that the proposal to increase aid over the next two years was complicating Israel’s negotiations with the White House. Graham told Haaretz that the White House is exerting undue pressure on Israel. “I think the Israeli government is concerned that the administration doesn’t think there should be an increase in funding for 2017, but they feel bound by the number,” he said. “The increase proposed in the Senate bill means that the whole appropriations committee – not just me – thinks Israel needs more support.”"[Haaretz]

KAFE KNESSET -- The War Over The Gaza War -- by Amir Tibon & Tal Shalev: The debate over lessons from the 2014 Gaza War continued this week, mainly because Prime Minister Netanyahu kept the topic in the headlines. Ahead of a looming State Comptroller report that will address his handling of the tunnel threat, Netanyahu briefed journalists and senior politicians, trying to brush off the criticism by former and current members of his cabinet. After Naftali Bennett slammed him on the subject (something he has been doing for almost two years), Yair Lapid joined the choir as well, stating that the security cabinet in which he served under Netanyahu didn't conduct any in-depth discussions about the tunnels until a month before war started. 

Meanwhile, coalition partners anxiously await an anticipated portfolio reshuffle that will take place when the Knesset closes for its summer recess. According to an agreement between Netanyahu and Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon, head of the Kulanu party, the two sides will swap portfolios – the Economy Ministry will move to Kulanu's control, and the Environmental Protection Ministry will move to the Likud. Kahlon was planning to move his number two, Housing Minister Yoav Galant, to the Economy Ministry, but Galant has apparently blocked that move and will stay in his seat. At the same time, an internal Likud quarrel has erupted: Zeev Elkin, who is slated to receive the Environmental Protection portfolio, is refusing to give up his current title – Minister for Jerusalem Affairs, a good title for shoring up support within Likud and the settler community. Netanyahu was hoping to give that prize to one of his closest confidants these days, Tzachi Hanegbi, who is a minister without a portfolio today. 

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SPOTLIGHT: "How Australia's Westfield got its name on America's Ground Zero redevelopment" by Robert Harley: "Frank Lowy is upbeat as he guides The AFR Magazine around New York’s newest retail precinct. Almost 15 years have passed since the devastation of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and finally here he is, preparing for the official August 16 opening of Westfield’s part of the rebuilt World Trade Centre. As the chairman of Westfield Corporation begins to express his pride and satisfaction at America’s comeback, someone in our small group points across the way and mentions that a delegation from Israel’s transport ministry is touring the centre too. Within a nanosecond Lowy strides over and makes himself known. It quickly becomes evident that he doesn’t need to do that because they already know him. As they laugh and chat in Hebrew, Lowy’s distinctive white hair can be seen in the middle of them."

"This kind of confident reaching out, making connections and building relationships is why an Australian shopping centre company came to have its name on the retail component of what is effectively a sacred site in the United States... The move into New York City had its roots in a 1986 Caribbean cruise. In a typical example of Frank Lowy networking, he took a seat at a blackjack table and struck up a conversation with an American sitting next to him. Soon he was visiting the American in New York and meeting his friends. One of them was Larry Silverstein, president of Silverstein Properties." [AFRMagazine]

LongRead: "Nazi Germany's Jewish champion: the mystery of Helene Mayer endures" by Les Carpenter: "The photograph is at once both beautiful and revolting. Snapped in the fading sun of an August afternoon during the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, this picture is of a German woman standing regal on the medal stand, dressed in white, her posture perfect, her face locked in the stoic gaze of determination. Her arm is outstretched in a strong, certain Nazi salute."

"Almost 80 years to the day the photo was taken the woman, Helene Mayer, remains one of the Olympics’ great mysteries. She was, by definition of German law at the time, part-Jewish, which had cost her most of her citizenship rights. Her country’s press was forbidden to mention her name. Once she had been one of Germany’s most beloved athletes, but by that afternoon she had been living a four-year exile in the US, unwanted by her homeland. So why did she throw out her arm in tacit acceptance of so much hate?"[TheGuardian h/t Ahron Fragin

SPORTS BLINK: "Like it or not, Roger Goodell’s job is only getting more secure" by Greg Bedard: "Even if Patriots owner Robert Kraft wanted to seek retribution and lead an ouster of Goodell, which all of New England would love to see (it’s about the only thing Kraft can do to reclaim his rightful place among Patriots fans), it’s not going to happen. NFL owners agreed to the rules and also that the threshold was a “preponderance of the evidence.” That the Patriots hit back so aggressively—both off the record and, later, on it—only bonded the other 31 teams against the Patriots’ position even more."[SportsIllustrated]

Yitz Applbaum on the Wine of the Week: One of the great wineries in Israel, both from the beauty of it location and the range of its wines, is Dalton. The tasting room is large enough for a substantial group and small enough to cuddle up in the corner with one other person and taste from a myriad of wonderful wines. The views are breathtaking and the locally grown food which accompanies the wine is perfect. 

The Dalton 2012 Cabernet from the vineyard in Meron, from a single vineyard, is an enchanting wine. I often crave tannins in my Cabernet but this wine seems to  have so much tamed fruit that the rich cherry and mint flavors blend together to give a fruit-filled body and a very long but subtle finish. I would drink this wine with roasted chicken and even try it with dessert with medium dark chocolate. [Dalton]

WEEKEND BIRTHDAYS: Twin brothers, Los Angeles based philanthropists and businessmen, Shlomo Yehuda Rechnitz and Yisroel Zev Rechnitz turn 45... Uriel Wassner... Jayme David... Jason Levin... Comedian, actor and political activist, the ageless Irwin Corey turns 102... Former Obama White House aide, now a venture capital investor for Steve Case, Herbie Ziskend turns 31... National investigative specialist at The E.W. Scripps Company, formerly a reporter for the New York Times, Aaron Kessler...

Co-founder of  H&R Block, Henry W. Bloch turns 94... Commissioner of Major League Baseball from 1992 to 2015, Allan Huber "Bud" Selig turns 82... Film director, writer and actor, Peter Bogdanovich turns 77... Actor, director and producer, Ken Olin turns 62... Born in Uzbekistan, a leader of the Bukhari Jewish community, businessman and philanthropist Lev Leviev turns 60... Emmy Award winning actress, comedienne and producer, Lisa Kudrow turns 53... Program director at the World Jewish Congress, Jonas Herzberg Karpantschof turns 34...

Director of the Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics at the University of Southern California, Dan Schnur ... Owner of the NBA's Dallas Maverick's, Mark Cuban turns 58... Helene Miller-Walsh, Jewish wife of former Congressman Joe Walsh... Actress, who went on to become CEO of Paramount Pictures and President of production at 20th Century Fox, Sherry Lansing turns 72... Holocaust scholar and historian, Michael Berenbaum turns 71... Author of 30 best selling mystery novels, many with Jewish themes, Faye Kellerman turns 64... Major League Baseball player (1998-2010) who went on to become Director of Player Development for the LA Dodgers, Gabe Kapler turns 41... President of Hudson River Ventures, Sean "Simcha" Eldridge turns 30...

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