In the USA, I believe this statue is highly relevant nowadays. I can not think on ant reason why it is not enforced.

Whoever knowingly or willfully advocates, abets, advises, or teaches the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying the government of the United States or the government of any State, Territory, District or Possession thereof, or the government of any political subdivision therein, by force or violence, or by the assassination of any officer of any such government; or
Whoever, with intent to cause the overthrow or destruction of any such government, prints, publishes, edits, issues, circulates, sells, distributes, or publicly displays any written or printed matter advocating, advising, or teaching the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying any government in the United States by force or violence, or attempts to do so; or
Whoever organizes or helps or attempts to organize any society, group, or assembly of persons who teach, advocate, or encourage the overthrow or destruction of any such government by force or violence; or becomes or is a member of, or affiliates with, any such society, group, or assembly of persons, knowing the purposes thereof—
Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both, and shall be ineligible for employment by the United States or any department or agency thereof, for the five years next following his conviction.
If two or more persons conspire to commit any offense named in this section, each shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both, and shall be ineligible for employment by the United States or any department or agency thereof, for the five years next following his conviction.
As used in this section, the terms “organizes” and “organize”, with respect to any society, group, or assembly of persons, include the recruiting of new members, the forming of new units, and the regrouping or expansion of existing clubs, classes, and other units of such society, group, or assembly of persons.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 808; July 24, 1956, ch. 678, § 2, 70 Stat. 623Pub. L. 87–486June 19, 196276 Stat. 103Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, § 330016(1)(N), Sept. 13, 1994108 Stat. 2148.)



I see that Rav Shach calls the "Enlightenment" "the accursed Enlightenment." What does that mean? I assume it refers to the actual Enlightenment philosophers Hobbes, and Hume and Rousseau plus the ideas of the Enlightenment that had come into the Jewish People.  It is unlikely that he meant the Rambam who emphasizes the learning of Metaphysics and Physics as understood by the Ancient Greeks.
The problem that I see is the religious world is a million times more evil than anything in the secular world. The Enlightenment I admit has problems but the religious world which pretend to keep Torah is so far infinity worse  than anything else out there I wonder why that side of things was unknown the the great Litvak Sages like Rav Shach. the religious world certainly is not the path of traditional Torah but rather some kind of insane perversion thought up by mentally ill religious fanatics.
I noticed that a lot of Christians have a very skewed way of looking at the New Testament.
I must have written about this before but maybe deleted it. If I would even begin to go into the issues there would not be enough time.
So perhaps I should just touch briefly on the topics.
(1) The Trinity has no support. The name of God in the Old Testament is "I will be", not "I am."
[Christian scholars know Greek well enough to be aware that the words "I am" used by Jesus were slightly out of place. So they think to make a interference from that that he was referring to the name by which G-d revealed himself to Moses. The trouble with that is that there is no גזרה שווה  equivalence of two words. Jesus used the words "I am." God used the words "I will be."

Still that is not meant to detract from the value of believing in a true tzadik as Reb Nachman made clear on many occasions.
(2) ביטול המצוות nullification of the commandments. Also has no support from the Sermon on the Mount. The Christian misreading of that is shockingly, intellectually dishonest.  Jesus is clearly saying the commandments of the Torah are forever and will never be nullified. [That is clear in the law of Moses where it says to keep all the laws of the Torah forever (Deuteronomy ch. 6). And the prophets end with an extortion to keep the law of Moses.]
(3) The inclusion of Paul into the canon of official books certainly puts a twist on the whole thing very different than what you would have gotten if the school of thought of Peter and James had been included as you can see from the Clementine  Doctrines and Recognitions. [German Scholars have already said that "Simon" there is a pseudonym of Paul.] [I wonder if  "Simon" is a composite? I have not seen the scholarship on this issue, but to me it seems that the same name there is used for at least two different people.]
(4) Only people very ignorant of Torah Law can see in anything that Jesus did things that were contrary to law.
In some areas he held one opinion as opposed to others for example mixing dirt with water on Shabat as this is an argument in the Rosh on tractate Shabat. Collecting ears of grain that no longer need nourishment from the soil is certainly not forbidden, and those that accused his disciples of doing something forbidden on Shabat are just the same kind of insane religious fanatics that you see today that love to bark at people, and thus displaying their own ignorance of Halacha. This is common in the insane religious world where they love to make up prohibitions out of thin air just in order to be able to bark like dogs.

In terms of the trial of Jesus, it is hard to find a case in which more legal procedures were violated. That is almost a textbook example of how to do everything wrong and against Torah Law. 

[I would imagine that if people would learn the Recognitions and Doctrines of Clement of Rome would clear up  lot of misconceptions..]


Some people suggest these negative trends in the USA began around 1900. Before that the USA had been WASP more as a religious identity more than an ethnic group. Apparently evolution was a big issue and the Bible being pushed out of schools.People even then were beginning to feel alienated. from the larger society.Then there was the push back which was mainly from Azusa Street and Aimee McPherson. But for some reason that seems to have had a very limited effect. The Leftward trends just kept going. My feeling about this is that the basic doctrine was really not as solid as the people like McPherson thought in the first place. As I have pointed out before letting Paul into the canon was like letting an ax into the piston engine.The basic Doctrine up until that time had been "the Constitution and the Word of God." But in the word of God itself as understood by Christians there were already tendencies of "anti Law." [anti-nomian-ism]. This charge was leveled at Protestants in particular after Martin Luther and it seems to me to be perfectly justified. In any case, this anti Law tendency just got worse over time. In Paul's time when Paul saw the effect of his aninomian letters, he pulled back and tried to correct the situation with limited success. But the antinomian letters are still there for anyone to read and still believe they are reading the "Bible". 


Reb Chaim Soloveitchik leaves one option open to say that the Rambam hold like the Rashbam in Bava Metzia page 96. Another option is to say he holds like Rashi and the Rosh that the thief has to pay back whole vessels. I showed a few days ago that the Raavad has to hold by the Rashbam. But I think it is clear the Rambam has to hold like Rashi and the Rosh.
The reason I say this is this. In halacah 14 we find there is a case in which the thief pays back according to how much it was worth at the time of the theft. That is when it went down in value in the meantime. So אין שמין לגנב can not be telling the court to evaluate the object according to the time that the case reaches the court. So all it can be saying then is that the thief can not say הרי שלך לפניך. But if the thief can pay back the original according to שווה כסף ככסף then what is the whole point of the law in the first place. If he would say הרי שלך לפניך then also all he would be doing is giving back the original object according to how much it is worth now and make up the difference in value with other מטלטלים. If the Rambam would hold by the Rashbam then the whole law would become meaningless.
So the only option that is left is to say the Rambam holds like Rashi and the Rosh.


Someone noted on this blog that Aristocracy was already not doing very well in Europe even before WWI. Still I can see the point that Democracy in the USA seems to bring about the lowest common denominator in people and reinforce the worse traits. I can definitely see the drawbacks. Still it seems to me that a lot of the problems in the West have less to do with the system of government, and more to do with the weakening of faith. In terms of that Nietzsche is important in pointing out the problems that arise when people disguise their base actions with professions of faith.


Looking at my notes on Bava Metzia 97a I am a little shocked. Today it seems to be clear the Raavad holds אין שמין לגנב and that that means like the Rashbam. The reason I say this is that the Raavad says אף על פי שאמרו אין שמין לגנב הני מילי בקרנא אבל בכפילא שמין דומה לגזלן והשכל מורה כן. The law for a גזלן is כל הגזלנים משלמים כשעת הגזילה. The only way I can see this is that the Raavad holds just like the Rashbam that אין שמים לגנב means one evaluates the worth of the,stolen object according to the time of העמדה בדין and the כפילא according to the time of the גניבה just like for the גזלן one evaluates  the object according to the time of the גזילה. I was struggling to make sense of Reb Chaim Soloveitchik's idea of bringing the statement of Rav in Bava Kama page 65 as a source for the Raavad. Today it seems to me this can not be true. In order to defend Reb Chaim I had to say the Raavad perhaps does not hold with the law אין שמין לגנב but we see clearly he does hold with it.

This all began with the idea that Reb Chaim is suggesting that the Raavad perhaps holds with Rashi and the Rosh that אין שמין means that one has to pay back כלים שלמים. Once I saw the Rav Shach disagrees with this, the whole issue became crystal clear.


Bava Metzia 96a. אין שמין לגנב

 Rav Shach say that the Rambam hold by the Rashbam that the thief can pay back מטלטלים, it  on this page.[Laws of loans 1 14 and 15.] I struggled in my notes to make sense of this opinion before I knew that Rav Shach said so because it was also something that Reb Chaim Soloveitchik had suggested.
My struggle you can see in my notes if you have an old version. But it occurred to me on Shabat that there is no need to have the Rambam go with the Rashbam in terms of the time of the evaluation.
Now today it occurred to me even more so that while the Rambam holds from the Rashbam it must be the case that he does not hold by him that אין שמין לגנב tells the court to evaluate at the time of העמדה בדין. There are two reason for this. The first reason is the simple language of the Rambam show this in halacha 15. There he says the court evaluates the object according to how much it was worth. Not how much it is worth. This shows clearly that the Rambam hold the court looks at the amount the object was worth at the time of the theft if the object has gone down in value. or was broken. Not the time of העמדה בדין. But if it went up in value the court does not look at the object in terms of the time of העמדה בדין either but rather at the time it was broken which also was in the past. In both cases the language of the Rambam is past tense. How much the object was worth. Not how much it is worth
The other reason is the Gemara in Bava Kama 65a where זולא ויוקרא are considered on the same plane as שבירה. So if it goes down in value that is the same as if it was broken. That is the thief has to pay back the amount it was worth at the time of the theft and if the object is still whole then to return the object. If the object went up in value and then was broken then the thief has to pay back the amount according the the later higher value.


בבא מציעא page צ''ז ע''א

בבא מציעא page צ''ז ע''א
 רב שך says the רמב''ם holds with the  רשב''ם.
רמב''ם הלכות גניבה פרק א' הלכה י''ד-ט''ו

 If the stolen object went down in value from ארבעה שקלים to שניים then the גנב pays ארבעה. That is the beginning of הלכה י''ד. That is to say that the beginning of הלכה י''ד says nothing about the object being broken. It is clear the רמב''ם means he gives back the object and pays the extra שני שקלים that it went down in value from the time of the theft until the day the case comes to court. But it might be broken also and then the same law would apply, that the thief give back the whole ארבעה שקלים. Then הלכה ט''ו is just a continuation of הלכה י''ד which is "אין שמין לגנב." It is the case when the object was broken and all it says is the thief can not say "הרי שלך לפניך." It has nothing to do with the time at which you evaluate the object. Therefore the astounding result is that even the רמב''ם holds one can pay back with objects that are worth the same amount of money that he owes שווה כסף. But also that that law has nothing to do with the time one evaluates the object.
What this means in plain עברית is that even though the רמב''ם holds with the רשב''ם as רב שך suggested, the amazing thing is that is only in terms of paying in objects that are worth money שווה כסף, or money itself. But not in terms of when is the time of evaluation. As far as the time is concerned the רמב''ם made it clear in הלכה י''ד 14 that we go by when the object was worth more. If at the time of the theft it was worth more then that is the sum the thief has to pay. If the object would have been worth more at the time of the date in court, then that is the sum the thief has to pay.

בבא מציעא דף ע''א צ''ו. רב שך אומר שהרמב''ם מחזיק עם הרשב''ם. רמב''ם הלכות גניבה פרק א" הלכה י''ד-ט''ו. אם החפץ הגנוב ירד ערך מן ארבעה שקלים לשניים, אז הגנב משלם ארבעה. זוהי תחילתה של הלכה י''ד. כלומר תחילת הלכה י''ד אומרת לא כלום אם האובייקט  שבור. זה ברור שהרמב''ם אומר שהוא יחזיר את האובייקט ומשלם תוספת שני שקלים שירד בשווי מרגע הגניבה עד היום שהמקרה מגיע לבית המשפט. (אבל גם אם נשבר גם אז אותו החוק יחול, שהגנב  מחוייב להחזיר את כל ארבעת השקלים. ואז הלכה ט''ו היא רק המשכה של הלכה י''ד והמהווה הדין "אין שמין לגנב." זהו המקרה כאשר האובייקט היה שבור וכל מה שזו אומרת הוא שהגנב לא יכול לומר "הרי שלך לפניך." אין לה מה לעשות עם הזמן שבו  מעריכים את האובייקט. לכן התוצאה המדהימה היא שאפילו שהרמב''ם מחזיק אחד יכול להחזיר שווה כסף ככסף. אבל  לחוק הזה אין שום קשר עם הזמן שמעריכים את האובייקט. מה זה אומר על בעברית פשוטה הוא כי למרות רמב''ם מחזיק עם רשב''ם כמו שרב שך אמר, הדבר המדהים הוא כי הוא רק במונחים שאפשר לשלם שווה כסף ככסף, (או כסף). אבל לא במונחים של מתי הוא הזמן של הערכה.  הרמב''ם ברור בהלכה י''ד שנלך על לפי הזמן שהאובייקט היה שווה יותר. אם בזמנו של גניבה זה היה שווה יותר, כי אז הוא הגנב צריך לשלם לפי שעת גנבה. אם האובייקט היה שווה יותר בעת שהתיק מגיע לבית המשפט, אז הסכום שהגנב צריך לשלם הוא הסכום של שעת הדין.