Now, we all know that the title of this Post, pulled from a headline in today's Chicago Tribune, is true. The obverse, however, is not as the swine flu virus somewhere in the genetic chain did involve swine. For purposes of this Post, however, the mantra cannot be "UJC IS A DISASTER. DON'T BLAME ITS LEADERS." UJC's leaders believe that (a) UJC is doing just fine, thank you and (b) any "problems" we have are attributable to, take your pick: the economy, terribly misinformed federations, Blogs and journalists, etc. etc. -- just not us...never us. (When you are in the "bubble," nothing much penetrates.) But, no matter how hard UJC tries to push away responsibility for its own deconstruction, it can't.
This week, UJC will visit the Board of the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles to disabuse that federation from its decision to reduce its UJC Dues from $2.2 million (!) to $1 million. The UJC "leaders" will no doubt point out how much Los Angeles receives through the work of UJC's D.C. Office and how much the federation will miss participation in the leadership ranks of UJC, JAFI/JDC, and the loss the community will feel when its women philanthropists are denied Lion of Judah status and its young leaders will no longer participate in the Young Leadership Cabinets. Perhaps, Los Angeles Federation leaders will question why these same UJC leaders have ignored them for, oh, the last four years -- except on issues of Dues -- and express an interest in continuing to pay their pro rata cost of UJC Washington, among other things from which they and our system benefit. Perhaps, just perhaps, Los Angeles' leaders will get answers about the 2010 Budget that have been provided no one else and then share those answers with the rest of us.
I know the lay and professional leadership in LA. They are caring leaders who believe in a responsible and responsive collectivity. I also firmly believe that a new leadership dedicated to the federations will be the only real hope we have to bring the LA's back into the collective fold.
No, you "..can't blame the pigs for Swine Flu," but when it comes to UJC, we all know where the blame lies.