Category Archives: Culture

Bribing for Concealed Carry Permits

There’s a broader point here.

Apple’s head of global security has been charged with bribery after allegedly promising 200 iPads worth $70,000 to police in exchange for four concealed-weapon permits for the company’s security officers.

[…]

Carrying concealed firearms in California is illegal without a permit, and county sheriffs have broad discretion over their issuance, which can cost between $200 and $400.

Jews Celebrate in Defiance of Government Prohibition

Mega props to the Orthodox Jewish community for exercising their God-given freedom to assemble and worship.

A Hasidic wedding in Brooklyn slipped under the radar of city officials as it crammed 7,000 maskless people into a synagogue in defiance of Governor Andrew Cuomo‘s coronavirus restrictions.

On November 8, crowds gathered shoulder to shoulder in the Yetev Lev temple in Williamsburg to celebrate the nuptials of Yoel Teitelbaum, grandson of Satmar Grand Rabbi Aaron Teitelman.

To keep the celebration under wraps, the community shared information on the wedding only by word of mouth as organizers schemed to avoid it being broken up by ‘the ravenous press and government officials’.

[…]

‘Due to the ongoing situation with government restrictions, preparations were made secretly and discreetly, so as not to draw attention from strangers,’ reported Yiddish newspaper Der Blatt, the publication of the Satmar sect. on November 13, according to the New York Post.

‘In recent weeks, organizers worked tirelessly to arrange everything in the best way possible.

‘All notices about upcoming celebrations were passed along through word of mouth, with no notices in writing, no posters on the synagogue walls, no invitations sent through the mail, nor even a report in any publication, including this very newspaper.’

Will You Take the COVID Vaccine?

Well?

Pfizer said Friday it is asking U.S. regulators to allow emergency use of its COVID-19 vaccine, starting the clock on a process that could bring limited first shots as early as next month and eventually an end to the pandemic — but not until after a long, hard winter.

The action comes days after Pfizer Inc. and its German partner BioNTech announced that its vaccine appears 95% effective at preventing mild to severe COVID-19 disease in a large, ongoing study.

The companies said that protection plus a good safety record means the vaccine should qualify for emergency use authorization, something the Food and Drug Administration can grant before the final testing is fully complete. In addition to Friday’s FDA submission, they have already started “rolling” applications in Europe and the U.K. and intend to submit similar information soon.

I am not one who rejects vaccines. I have taken all of the normal ones throughout my life and believe them to be a prudent way to prevent severe illnesses with minor risk. There’s no way I’m taking the first round of a vaccine that was rushed to market to prevent a disease that my immune system will almost certainly be able to fight of when I get it. For people who are in a higher risk category for COVID, y’all’s risk/benefit assessment may be different. But I would count on wide swaths of Americans taking a pass for a while until we see how the first few waves of vaccinations go.

The question will be… what will the government and businesses do to force it? We have already see several businesses jumping to find ways to force their customers to get a vaccine. We are in a dangerous transition point in our nation’s history. I’m not sure that we will ever get back.

In Praise of Messy

Here is my full column that ran in the Washington County Daily News earlier this week:

There is a dangerous ethos slipping into our national psyche that has the power to upend our cherished republic. That ethos decrees that objectionable speech should be forbidden. Not challenged with more speech. Not ridiculed. Not debunked. Forbidden. Our nation’s downfall finds root in such concepts.

Our nation is not unaccustomed to robust public debate. Much of our history is the story of vigorous, heated, sometimes violent debates that burned hot in the friction created by the wheels of progress. Some of our national heroes are those who were able to introduce new, sometimes radical, concepts that lubricated the body politic in preparation for action. Such heroes of thought, pen, and voice would struggle in today’s enforced culture of leftist thought hegemony.

Liberty begins with the freedom of thought and the first public manifestation of liberty is the expression of thought. The measure of a free society is how many of those expressions are permitted. How restrictive can a society be before it toggles from a society that is considered free and one that is not?

In a perfectly free society, all expressions would be permitted without government sanction. Almost all nations, even those considered to be ardent adherents to the principle of free speech, criminalize some speech. Direct threats and defamation are almost never allowed, for example, but the bar for restricting speech is very high.

At the other end of the spectrum are those nations that maniacally regulate every utterance and have severe penalties for anyone who dares speak something deemed forbidden by the regime in power. The United States has moved along this scale throughout its history, but we are slipping toward the totalitarian end of that spectrum at an alarming pace.

In the American culture, people like to claim that they support free speech, but are increasingly willing to silence people who express views with which they disagree. Since it goes against the traditional American self-image to silence opposing views, the oppressors among us have taken the convenient moral shortcut of labeling thoughts with which they disagree as X-ist or hateful. Since everyone agrees that it is immoral to be X-ist or hateful, the oppressors can claim that silencing such thoughts, and the expression of them, as not only justified, but a moral imperative.

This is the faux moral high ground that movements like antifa and the leftists who lend them support seek to claim. They stand in righteous judgment of everyone who they deem “fascist” or “hateful” or “bigoted.” Their definitions are fluid, but their fury is constant. And when the silencing of evil foes is a moral imperative, any means of doing so can be justified because it promotes a higher good.

Those means have manifested themselves across America in a hundred different ways. News organizations have spawned “fact checking” squads to seek out opposing thoughts and label them as untrue. These self-anointed arbiters of truth stride forth with the confidence and wisdom of 19-year-olds who are home from their first year of college. In an earlier column, I rang a warning bell about the tech giants who are using their market dominance to regulate which speech is allowed to be heard and which must be quashed into the digital abyss. Some Democrat politicians and leftists are espousing the virtues of blacklists to prevent any Trump supporter from being able to work or hold a position of public influence. In both Wisconsin and in Washington D.C., we saw how elected leaders and bureaucrats weaponized government agencies to silence speech and punish the speakers.

The crushing of American public debate under the pretext of purging it of hate, X-ism, and bigotry is an attack on the freedom of thought and an affront to the ideals upon which our nation was founded. That does not mean that all thoughts are good, helpful, or positive, but the way to eradicate them is not to mute them. The way to eradicate them is to allow the light of truth in the public space to show them for what they are and allow them to retreat to the fringe. Freedom means permitting the expression of all thoughts — not just the ones that are accepted by the current orthodoxy.

Freedom relies on people being able to think, speak, introduce new ideas, resurface old ideas, subject them to the gristmill of public debate, and allow the people a robust discussion of diverse viewpoints from which to formulate a consensus public policy. Many of the ideas espoused by our Founders were considered radical, subversive, and treasonous at the time. That is precisely why our founding documents include a full-throated defense of free speech. They understood that the world would change, and new ideas would emerge. Our nation should not fear those ideas. We should welcome them, debate them, and encourage more. It is messy, but freedom always is.

Dane County Bans Indoor Gatherings of Any Kind

Nuts to that.

Public Health Madison and Dane County issued on Tuesday, Nov. 17 an emergency order which prohibits indoor gatherings of any size. Outdoor gatherings are permitted with 10 people or less, with physical distancing.

Officials say this order goes into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 18.

[…]

In-person games, sports, competitions, group exercise classes, meetings, trainings, movies, events, and conferences are all considered mass gatherings. Indoor mass gatherings of any people who do not live together are prohibited. Outdoor mass gatherings are limited to 10 people who do not live together, with physical distancing. The previous limit for gatherings was 10 indoors and 25 outdoors, with physical distancing.

This emergency order is in effect until 12:01 a.m. on Dec. 16 — \and continues to require face coverings and limit the capacity for most businesses to 50%, along with many other provisions.

Will the Leftist “fight the MAN!” radicals in Madison sheepishly obey this order?

Yup.

When did we get to the point that we just accept that it is the role of some jackass health department bureaucrat to tell us if we can gather with friends and family in our own homes? About three months ago. Push back.

BTW,

The First Amendment guarantees freedoms concerning religion, expression, assembly…

School Closings are Not About the Rona

The Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty has done a study which shows what we all anecdotally knew. Unions and politics are driving school closures. COVID is just the excuse. If you want to see systemic classism/racism, look to the public school system.

Diving Deeper: As the new school year approached in 2020, individual school districts in Wisconsin had to make important decisions about in-person learning or using virtual options. But how much did the local presence of the COVID-19 virus factor into these decisions? Research Director Will Flanders, author of Politics in the Pandemic: The Role of Unions in School Reopening Decisions, finds that factors other than the local presence of the virus appear to have played a much larger role.

  • Union presence predicts a school going virtual. Districts with a teachers union were more likely to go virtual than districts without a teachers union.

  • Political ideology predicts a school going virtual. Districts with a higher percentage of votes for President Trump in 2016 and 2020 were more likely to open, while those with a higher percentage for Hillary Clinton were more likely to remain shuttered.

  • COVID-19 cases in an area were not predictive. The per-capita rate of COVID-19 cases in an area was not significantly predictive of whether a school district would reopen or not.

  • Districts with more low-income children are more likely to go virtual. As the percentage of students in a district who are low-income increases, so does the likelihood that the district will have chosen virtual education for the fall.

 

In praise of messy

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online and in print. Here’s a part:

In the American culture, people like to claim that they support free speech, but are increasingly willing to silence people who express views with which they disagree. Since it goes against the traditional American self-image to silence opposing views, the oppressors among us have taken the convenient moral shortcut of labeling thoughts with which they disagree as X-ist or hateful. Since everyone agrees that it is immoral to be X-ist or hateful, the oppressors can claim that silencing such thoughts, and the expression of them, as not only justified, but a moral imperative.

This is the faux moral high ground that movements like antifa and the leftists who lend them support seek to claim. They stand in righteous judgment of everyone who they deem “fascist” or “hateful” or “bigoted.” Their definitions are fluid, but their fury is constant. And when the silencing of evil foes is a moral imperative, any means of doing so can be justified because it promotes a higher good.

Those means have manifested themselves across America in a hundred different ways. News organizations have spawned “fact checking” squads to seek out opposing thoughts and label them as untrue. These self-anointed arbiters of truth stride forth with the confidence and wisdom of 19-year-olds who are home from their first year of college.

In an earlier column, I rang a warning bell about the tech giants who are using their market dominance to regulate which speech is allowed to be heard and which must be quashed into the digital abyss. Some Democrat politicians and leftists are espousing the virtues of blacklists to prevent any Trump supporter from being able to work or hold a position of public influence. In both Wisconsin and in Washington D.C., we saw how elected leaders and bureaucrats weaponized government agencies to silence speech and punish the speakers.

The crushing of American public debate under the pretext of purging it of hate, X-ism, and bigotry is an attack on the freedom of thought and an affront to the ideals upon which our nation was founded. That does not mean that all thoughts are good, helpful, or positive, but the way to eradicate them is not to mute them. The way to eradicate them is to allow the light of truth in the public space to show them for what they are and allow them to retreat to the fringe. Freedom means permitting the expression of all thoughts — not just the ones that are accepted by the current orthodoxy.

 

 

Americans Plan to Resist Lockdowns

Lockdowns are not an effective means of controlling the pandemic, but they are very effective at controlling people, destroying small businesses, increasing poverty, increasing food insecurity, increasing mental health issues, neglecting our elderly, and harming our kids’ educations. Yeah, not thanks. I will not comply. And I suspect that a sizable chunk of the 49% who SAY they will comply, won’t.

Americans are less likely to comply with another coronavirus lockdown than they were in the spring, with fewer than half saying in a new poll that they’re very likely to stay home this time around, according to a new Gallup Poll released as record numbers of cases skyrocket nationwide.

In the poll, taken between Oct. 19 and Nov. 1, 49% of respondents said they’ll be very likely to stay home for a month if it’s recommended after an outbreak in their communities, reports CNN. This is down from 67% in the spring.

Another 18% said they are somewhat likely to comply, but a third said they are not likely to obey lockdown orders.

Ticketmaster Prepares to Check COVID Vaccine Status

It won’t be the government that mandates a vaccine. It will be businesses that fear lawsuits. Airlines, shared ride services, restaurants, sports clubs, etc… and once they are successful with this one, they will expand it to other things. Did you get your other recommended vaccines? Did you buy health insurance? Have any communicable diseases? Current on your child support? Bought any guns lately? Frankly, I’m not comfortable with sharing my healthcare data with a flippin’ ticket broker. Are you?

Monday’s news that pharmaceutical company Pfizer’s early results on a new COVID-19 vaccine showed a 90% efficacy rate on an initial clinical trial have given concert professionals hope that the business can start mounting a return in 2021. As part of that preparation, Ticketmaster has been working on a framework for post-pandemic fan safety that uses smart phones to verify fans’ vaccination status or whether they’ve tested negative for the coronavirus within a 24 to 72 hour window.

Many details of the plan, which is still in development phase, will rely on three separate components — the Ticketmaster digital ticket app, third party health information companies like CLEAR Health Pass or IBM’s Digital Health Pass and testing and vaccine distribution providers like Labcorp and the CVS Minute Clinic.

To All Veterans… Thank You

“Against that backdrop, violent crime has soared.”

Well, if you take cops off the street and tell the rest that you won’t support them, there will be consequences. If I were a citizen in a neighboring community, I would be calling my mayor/alderman and insisting that we don’t send our officers to Minneapolis to risk their lives.

Minneapolis is scrambling to draft in cops from outside the city’s force to help fight a wave of violent crime just months after it began moves to defund its police.

The city is pleading for reinforcements from the sheriff’s office and the transit authority to help respond to a surge in violent 911 calls.

It comes after dozens of officers quit the force in protest at a $1million budget cut and promises from city leaders to scrap the entire department following the death of George Floyd in May.

Since then, violent crime in the city has soared – with homicide, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, theft and arson all up on last year’s figures.

The proposal to fund the reinforcements  – which will cost almost $500,000 – is due to be voted on by the City Council before going to the mayor approval, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.
[…]

At the start of the year, the Minneapolis police force employed 1,053 staff – 877 of them officers and 176 civilian staff.

That number had dropped to 987 as of last month – 844 officers and 143 civilians.

In July, the city council voted to move $1.1million from the police department’s budget and fund ‘civilian violence interrupters’ instead.

The ‘well-trained and unarmed’ staff are designed to ‘mediate violent conflicts and help prevent further trouble’.

Against that backdrop, violent crime has soared.

Pfizer Vaccine Results Looks Positive

Cautiously hopeful.

Pfizer announced Monday that a COVID-19 vaccine developed with its partner, BioNTech, has proved to be more than 90% effective and that it plans to ask regulators for permission to sell the shot before the end of this month if pending data shows it is safe.

“Hopefully now we can move on and get this vaccine out there and make sure it’s doing what it’s supposed to do and stop” the virus, said Kathrin Jansen, Pfizer’s head of vaccine research and development, reports The Wall Street Journal.

According to Pfizer, the vaccine proved to be more than 90% effective in the first 94 subjects who had both been infected by coronavirus and had developed at least one of the disease’s symptoms, according to the companies. The companies say no serious safety issues have come up in its study, which includes almost 44,000 subjects in the United States and in other countries.

However, health regulators say it will take some time to review the vaccine. The Food and Drug Administration requires that safety assessments include at least two months of monitoring for half of the study’s subjects.

The campaign is never over

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online and in print. Here’s a little part:

Another driver of the growing relevance of politics in our lives is that we have ceded too much power to the political realm. In earlier years, debates over the next Supreme Court justice or which party controlled the U.S. Senate were important, but not imperative. Our far-away federal government made big decisions about big things, but was relegated to a narrow part of our daily lives.

Now we have allowed our federal government into the most intimate corners of our lives. We have allowed politicians and bureaucrats we have never met, who live and work in distant cities to which we have never been, to make the most granular decisions about how we live our lives. They are deciding what kind of cars we can drive, how we see our doctors, how much water our toilets can use, what fuels our lawnmowers can use, what our schools teach our children, what foods we can eat, how we make our neighborhoods safe, and so much more.

Throughout most of our history, these decisions were left to the good sense of individuals and the cooperation between neighbors. Now we task our government to homogenize and codify the most minor of human interactions into law. If it seems that politics are taking a larger role in our lives, it is because we have allowed it. Some have insisted upon it.

 

The elusiveness of legitimacy

Here is my full column from the Washington County Daily News that ran last week.

One of the many strengths that has sustained our great nation through the centuries is the peaceful transition of power. What makes this possible is that the people whose candidate did not win are willing to accept the legitimate governance of the winner and channel their energies into winning the next time. My fervent hope is that this presidential election will continue our nation’s history of peacefully transitioning power irrespective of who wins.

In any civic society, the stability and success of the government requires that the vast majority of the people consider the government to be legitimate, but legitimacy is an elusive concept that is largely in the mind of each citizen. Some argue that democratic governments are inherently legitimate because democracies are designed to enact the will of the majority of the people. Democracy, however, is a method of making decisions. It is not, in and of itself, a basis of legitimacy.

Thomas Jefferson got to the root of it in the Declaration of Independence when he echoed John Locke’s contention that governments are instituted, “deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.” The word “consent” is the basis of legitimacy and can be just as easily given or withdrawn in a democracy as in an autocracy. A relatively free society like ours relies on almost everyone agreeing to abide by the laws enacted by government of their own free will — even when they disagree with the law or the means by which it was enacted. Unlike a totalitarian government, democratic societies purposefully lack the police power to enforce widespread disobedience and face stiff resistance when they try. For order and stability to prevail, almost everyone must generally consent to the laws. They will only do so when they think that the government is legitimate and that there is a general sense that we are all in this together.

There are many things that can rend the sense of legitimacy in a democracy. Marxists rely on dividing people by class and race to delegitimize the government by convincing people that the government is not working for them. Democracies can devolve into mob rule where a substantial minority is subjugated to the majority. Technocracies can develop in democracies where the public will is subverted by unelected experts. Human history is replete with the rise and fall of governments. They always fall when the people no longer think they are legitimate and, therefore, no longer feel a need to obey them.

I began dwelling on legitimacy while enjoying a delicious fish fry at one of Wisconsin’s myriad supper clubs. Like many people, I have accepted that COVID-19 will be with us for the long term and that when I get it, it is exceedingly unlikely that I will suffer long-term effects from it. I am going about living my life with reasonable precautions that I would make to avoid catching any virus. As I have gone to stores and restaurants, it is clear that most Wisconsinites are doing the same thing and are largely ignoring the various orders flowing out of the Madison bureaucracy. While it is good to see free people behaving as such, it is a warning sign that the legitimacy of state government is waning.

When the presidential election is over, either Donald Trump or Joe Biden will be our next president. Many people are questioning the integrity of our election process and casting doubt on the legitimacy of whoever wins. The Marxists who have been burning cities are intentionally working to undermine the legitimacy of our government. They can be isolated for the insurgents they are, but only if the vast majority of the people can accept the election results and our next president as the legitimate president.

My heartfelt hope is that all of the people working in this election do so with the utmost integrity. The American people have a long history of accepting the results of elections even when their side loses. But if the election is fraught with errors, fraud, distrust, allegations, and other malarky, the result will be more and more people refusing to accept our government as legitimate. If even 15% or 20% of the people no longer accept our federal government as the legitimate government of the people, then civic society breaks down and becomes ungovernable. America becomes Portland.

People often suffer from recency bias or historical ignorance when they say things like “this is the most important/ contentious/dishonest presidential election in our history” (I would say it was the 1796/1860/1876 elections, respectively), but every election is an inflection point. History will tell us if this was just another peaceful transition of power or a step in our nation’s decline.

RIP Sean Connery

RIP

James Bond legend Sir Sean Connery has died in his sleep aged 90 following a long illness, his family have announced.

Tributes have been pouring in for the Oscar-winning actor who passed away in the Bahamas and leaves behind his wife Micheline and sons Jason and Stefan.

Jason told the BBC his father had been surrounded by ‘many of his family’ who could make it to the Caribbean when he died.

Freedom of Expression Ends if it Offends

This opinion is identical to that of woke Leftists. It offends me.

CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi said on Wednesday freedom of expression should stop if it offends more than 1.5 billion people, following the display of images in France of the Prophet Mohammad that Muslims see as blasphemous.

Sisi also said he firmly rejects any form of violence or terrorism from anyone in the name of defending religion, religious symbols or icons.

“We also have rights. We have the right for our feelings not to be hurt and for our values not to be hurt,” he said during an address to commemorate the Prophet Mohammad’s birthday.

“And if some have the freedom to express what is in their thoughts I imagine that this stops when it comes to offending the feelings of more than 1.5 billion people,” he added in televised remarks.

Gun Sales Soaring

I know people in both of these groups.

In the U.S., spikes in gun purchases are often driven by fear. But in past years that anxiety has centered on concerns that politicians will pass stricter gun controls. Mass shootings often prompt more gun sales for that reason, as do elections of liberal Democrats.

Many gun buyers now are saying they are motivated by a new destabilizing sense that is pushing even people who had considered themselves anti-gun to buy weapons for the first time — and people who already have them to buy more.

The nation is on track in 2020 to stockpile at record rates, according to groups that track background checks from FBI data. Across the country, Americans bought 15.1 million guns in the seven months this year from March through September, a 91% leap from the same period in 2019, according to seasonally adjusted firearms sales estimates from The Trace, a nonprofit news organization that focuses on gun issues. The FBI has also processed more background checks for gun purchases in just the first nine months of 2020 than it has for any previous full year, FBI data show.

“Dallas” Brought Down the USSR

Huh.

TV show Dallas was the main reason behind the collapse of communism in the Soviet Union, it has been claimed.

Eurythmics co-founder Dave Stewart said that former Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev told him that the 1980s soap opera ‘had more effect’ in ending the Cold War than anything else.

Mr Stewart, 68, said the Gorbachev admitted an illicit broadcast of the US show in Russia had opened his people’s eyes to Western life, and the Texas-based show ‘brought down’ the communist superpower.

[…]

Mr Stewart said it had taken place in the early 1990s just as the Soviet Union was starting to open up. Before then, the Russians had been stopped by the government from listening to Western music or watching TV shows.

He said: ‘He was saying what brought Russia down was they weren’t allowed to see any shows from anywhere and they had in the churches they had giant blockers of signals so they’d only get fed the information from the government.

[…]

‘What Gorbachev was saying it was Dallas the TV show, somebody managed to get a VHS to work and broadcast it to part of Russia and they thought, ”Hang on, that’s how people live in America?”

‘He said that had more effect, that half an hour, than anything else.’

The elusiveness of legitimacy

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online and in print. Here’s a taste:

In any civic society, the stability and success of the government requires that the vast majority of the people consider the government to be legitimate, but legitimacy is an elusive concept that is largely in the mind of each citizen. Some argue that democratic governments are inherently legitimate because democracies are designed to enact the will of the majority of the people. Democracy, however, is a method of making decisions. It is not, in and of itself, a basis of legitimacy.

Thomas Jefferson got to the root of it in the Declaration of Independence when he echoed John Locke’s contention that governments are instituted, “deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.” The word “consent” is the basis of legitimacy and can be just as easily given or withdrawn in a democracy as in an autocracy. A relatively free society like ours relies on almost everyone agreeing to abide by the laws enacted by government of their own free will — even when they disagree with the law or the means by which it was enacted. Unlike a totalitarian government, democratic societies purposefully lack the police power to enforce widespread disobedience and face stiff resistance when they try. For order and stability to prevail, almost everyone must generally consent to the laws. They will only do so when they think that the government is legitimate and that there is a general sense that we are all in this together.

There are many things that can rend the sense of legitimacy in a democracy. Marxists rely on dividing people by class and race to delegitimize the government by convincing people that the government is not working for them. Democracies can devolve into mob rule where a substantial minority is subjugated to the majority. Technocracies can develop in democracies where the public will is subverted by unelected experts. Human history is replete with the rise and fall of governments. They always fall when the people no longer think they are legitimate and, therefore, no longer feel a need to obey them.

Jews Flee Europe

Interesting 

Between the end of the 18th and 19th centuries, the number of Jews in the world rose to more than 10 million, and climbed further to 16.5 million on the eve of the second world war. Most of the growth was in eastern Europe, then America and then Palestine and Israel.

The murder of 6 million Jews in the Holocaust reduced the global population to around 11 million, “radically disrupt[ing] what had been up to that moment the continuous build-up and transformation of European Jewry”.

In 1880, 88% of the world’s Jews lived in Europe. By 1945, this share had fallen to 35%, then to 26% in 1970 and to 9% in 2020. Most of this decline happened in eastern Europe, where the share of the global total fell from 26% in 1945 to 2% in 2020.

In the latter decades of the 20th century, the “opening of the doors of the Soviet Union” meant that more than 1.8 million Jews left eastern Europe between 1969 and 2020, resulting in “a drastic shift in the Jewish population’s centre of gravity from the east to the west of the continent”.