“I will never surrender my sacred corkscrew,” Professor Plum said, holding it aloft as he walked into the mail room.

He read the mail…. (More)

Professor Plum and Ms. Scarlet then left to join the resident faculty in the wine cellar library, where they’ll spend the weekend drinking thinking on our motto of Magis vinum, magis verum (“More wine, more truth”).

In the staff poker game, the Professor of Astrology Janitor was focused on his less-than-sacred pair of black Eights. He had raised to open the pot, and Chef called. The flop brought the Ace of Hearts and the Jack and Six of Diamonds. The Professor of Astrology Janitor put in a follow-up bet, but Chef quickly called. The Eight of Diamonds on the turn gave the Professor of Astrology Janitor, and he put in a pot-sized bet.

Chef smiled. “I’m all-in.”

She was representing two Diamonds and a flush. But might she be bluffing? The Professor of Astrology Janitor saw they had nearly equal chip stacks, and he was sure Chef knew that as well. He also knew that the longer he thought about it, the more obvious it was that he didn’t have an Ace-high Diamond flush, the only hand that could call her all-in bet. He sighed and folded his Eights.

“Pocket Jacks?” Chef asked as she turned over her two Sixes.

“Very nice bluff,” he replied, patting the table.

The Professor of Astrology Janitor began his plaintive mewling and Chef went to the kitchen to make Potato and Cheddar Latkes with Brown Sugar Applesauce, leaving your lowly mail room clerk to review the week’s correspondence….

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Dear Ms. Crissie,

Dr. Ben Carson recently asserted that if guns had not been confiscated from Jews then Hitler would have had more trouble orchestrating the Holocaust.

Jonathan Greenblatt, National Director of the Anti-Defamation Leauge, quickly objected, stating that there were few firearms available to Jews in Germany in 1938 and that surrendering them did not measurably contribute to the totalitarian power of the Nazi German state.

What Greenblatt fails to account for is that the surrendering of firearms by Jews when required to by Nazi authorities was not merely the surrender of guns and ammunition. Those material items would not have been sufficient to defend against the Third Reich’s military.

The mindset that Jews surrendered with their guns is far more important than the hardware they turned over: They surrendered the demonstrated intention, at all costs, to resist being deprived of liberty. If Jews in Germany had more actively resisted the Nazi party or the Nazi regime and had diagnosed it as a malignant and deadly cancer from the start, there would, indeed, have been a chance for the people of that country and the world to be moved to action by their bold refusal to be enslaved.

Granted, I was not there. Granted, hindsight is 20/20. But it turns out it was a bad idea for any Jew to have turned over a gun. It was a bad idea for any Jew to have boarded a train. It was a bad idea for any Jew to have passed through a gate into a camp. It was a bad idea for any Jew to do any work at any such camp. It was a bad idea for any Jew to not attempt to crush the skull or scratch out the eyes of any Nazi who turned his back for one moment. And every bullet that would have been fired into a Nazi coming to a doorway to confiscate a gun from a Jew would have been a sacred bullet.

Keith in MA

Dear Keith,

We commend your capacity for historical revisionism. However, your and Carson’s claim has been repeatedly and thoroughly discredited. In a 2004 Fordham Law Review article, Bernard Harcourt found that Adolf Hitler expanded gun ownership for other Germans in the same 1938 decree that banned Jews from owning guns. That 1938 decree was not about limiting gun ownership in general; it targeted a specific group. And many Jews did resist the Nazis, as Alex Seitz-Wald explained in 2013. Those who did were slaughtered or sent to concentration camps. We further note that, contrary to the NRA mythology, Hitler seized power in 1932 by directing armed civilian gangs against his political opponents and the government, and Germany was already a dictatorship when he issued his 1938 gun decree. In conclusion, we find no historical evidence that German Jews could have prevented Hitler’s rise – or the Holocaust – if only they had turned pistols and shotguns against the Gestapo, the Wehrmacht, and their well-armed neighbors. We agree with the Anti-Defamation League that such arguments are an insult to the memory of those who died in the Holocaust.

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Dear Ms. Crissie,

My latkes always come out soggy or crumbly or both. How does Chef make them?

Latke to Learn in Blogistan

Dear Latke to Learn,

First grate 2 pounds of peeled baking potatoes and finely chop 1 large onion. Place the potatoes and onions together in a large towel, pull the sides together, and squeeze firmly to wring out any excess liquid. This makes your latkes hold together and crisp nicely. Then mix the potatoes and onions in a bowl with 2 cups of grated Cheddar cheese, ¼ cup of unbleached flour, 2 large beaten eggs, 1½ teaspoons of kosher salt, and black pepper to taste. Fry the latkes in oil over medium heat until golden brown, about 3½ minutes on each side. Chef tops them with homemade Brown Sugar Applesauce, for which you can find the recipe in the link below. Bon appétit!

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Photo Credit: Fox and Friends

Sources:

Keith in MA; Adolf Hitler expanded gun ownership for other Germans in the same 1938 decree that banned Jews from owning guns; many Jews did resist the Nazis; Hitler seized power in 1932 by directing armed civilian gangs against his political opponents and the government; such arguments are an insult to the memory of those who died in the Holocaust.

Potato and Cheddar Latkes with Brown Sugar Applesauce.

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Happy Sunday!