Friday, March 8, 2013


A recent Parsha of the week highlighted (or, low-lighted) the nefarious episode of the Golden Calf. This, of course, brought to mind JFNA's current slavish devotion to its Golden Calf, the Global Calfing Table -- uhhhh, GPT. I have begun to hear, as an almost constant refrain, that "if the GPT fails, JFNA will 'disintegrate,' 'self-destruct,'" etc. No one can explain why that would be the case, just that that would be so. 

And, if one agrees with the dire, foreboding self-prescription (for this doomsday scenario originated at 25 Broadway), then shouldn't there be some introspection as to "why?" How could the collapse of the most poorly thought-through program doom the organization that designed and promoted it? As best I can tell, few if any believe that the Global Planning Table as conceived and as designed will have anything but marginal value, so the sales pitch has become: "if you vote against this, then you and your federation will be responsible for the collapse of JFNA. How could you do such a thing?" And, the response is not, as it might/should have been, "How can we fix this thing so that it will deliver value to the federations?" (And, we have offered remedial proposals on these pages.) The response has been nothing more than an acceptance of the speculation as if it were true.

Now, we would probably all agree that JFNA has produced almost zero deliverables for the $600,000,000(+) that the federations have paid in Dues. Things are so bad that the organization "redelivers" failures and paints them as successes -- in the last month, TribeFest reared its ugly head once again, notwithstanding its manifest failure; and, now, Strategic Core Priorities, the program that has failed, like Festivus, not once but twice, is brought back for a third time. If at first (and at second) you don't succeed, fail, fail again. (You will recall that the Select Core Priorities was to be the precursor to the "success" of the GPT. It has proved, instead, to be the predictor of nothing more than failure,)

I have been around for too long, for sure. I have heard many a rationale for some truly great national plans and programs -- usually enthusiastic and always easily understood. To hear some of our system's best and brightest lay and professional leaders argue for the GPT on the basis that "if we fail to support it, the national system will disintegrate," is the saddest excuse for what promises to be an expensive disaster that I have ever heard. Further, such an argument merely demonstrates the vacuity in any argument of support for the unsupportable. 

The "marketing plan" is now: "The GPT -- support it or JFNA will die." Doesn't resonate with me, how 'bout with you?



Anonymous said...

Meah achuz Richard, 100%! As midrash tells us, idolatry is the worship of flawed creations of our own hands. "eyes they have but cannot see, ears they have but cannot hear, mouths they have but cannot speak". Ok, well maybe they can do meaningless tweets and self-promoting poorly written press releases. However, as the remedy is speaking truth and acting on it, what has been the rewards for those who don't silently go along with " our thing"?

Anonymous said...

“Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.” Voltaire

1) The GPT is to answer the demands of the small Federations. (Bold Face lie)

2) If we fail to support the GPT, the national system will disintegrate/fail (Read: Jerry and Kathy will be emmbarassed) (Read further: If Jerry racks up another major failure - maybe his contract will not be renewed)

Anonymous said...

Answer to first anonymous: professionally Jewish squeaky wheels swim with the (gefilte) fishes

To second anon: CEOs come and go, the consultant will live to charge (and charge) another day

Used to be important said...

Let it fail. Start over. Couldn't be worse.