NewsBits: The Economy Continues To Take A Toll

from The Forward:

New Israeli Data Pointing Toward An Erosion of The Middle Class

Figures set for release later in October by the government’s Central Bureau of Statistics show that even when the economy was at its very strongest, in 2007, more and more Israelis had difficulties putting food on the table.

That year, the country’s economy grew by 5.4% – faster than the United States, Europe, the United Kingdom and Japan. But the percentage of Israelis who went without food for economic reasons at some point during 2007 stood at 21%, up significantly from 14% in 2003.

from Tablet Magazine:

Rabbis in Recession

The recession has not spared the rabbinate. At a bleak and stressful time, when pastoral hand-holding may be more in demand than ever, full-time pulpit jobs in America’s liberal movements – Reform, Conservative, and Reconstructionist – are in short supply. Seminaries and synagogues have had to pare their budgets down to essentials; individual rabbis, likewise, have had to figure out what it means to be a rabbi without working as one. But as painful a moment as it is, some in the field suggest that this perhaps relatively short-term hardship for rabbis and institutions could ultimately prove to be, as they say, good for the Jews.