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A Word from Rabbi Schulman - 2/19/16

It’s the silly season in politics once again. Every four years, politicians vie to become President of the United States, promising to rectify all ills in society and to bring about a better America. Especially in this primary season, when no clear candidate stands out as the standard bearer for the Democratic and Republican parties, the intensity of the rivalries between candidates has really heated-up. It’s mind-boggling the accusations and invective hurled by candidates against one another during this primary season.

Chances are that by now you have formulated opinions about the seven leading candidates still in the race. But in case you need a little assistance sorting out your feelings about the candidates, I thought I would submit a test for your consideration. It’s a mix-and-match quiz that employs Yiddish proverbs.

Yiddish is a remarkably colorful, expressive, and insightful Ashkenazic Jewish language. I own a book that contains over 1,000 Jewish proverbs. I’ve selected just eight of them for your consideration. I invite you to match the following eight presidential candidates to these Yiddish proverbs.

Candidates (in alphabetical order):

1. Jeb Bush

2. Ben Carson

3. Hillary Clinton

4. Ted Cruz

5. John Kasich

6. Marco Rubio

7. Bernie Sanders

8. Donald Trump

Yiddish proverbs:

A. A ligner hert zich zeineh ligen azoi lang ein biz er glaibt zich alain.

A liar tells his story so often that he gets to believe it himself.

B. Ain nar iz a maivin oifen anderen

One fool is an expert on the other.

C. A shver hartz redt a sach.

A heavy heart talks a lot.

D. Alleh finer tuen glei vai (alleh kinder zeinen glich tei’er

All fingers hurt alike (all children are equally dear to parents).

E. A halber emes iz a gantser ligen.

A half-truth is a whole lie.

F. Az me hot a sach tsu tun, laigt men zich shlofen

If you have a lot to do, go to sleep.

G. A kluger vaist vos er zogt, a nar zogt vos er vaist.

A wise man knows what he says, a fool says what he knows.

H. Ainer iz a lgen, tsvai iz ligens, drei iz politik.

One lie is a lie, two are lies, but three is politics.

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