Questions that Broyde and His Supporters Will Not Answer

Rabbi Michael Broyde or one his supporters (perhaps Keter or Goldwasser 😉 ) created a FaceBook page, Support Rabbi Broyde. While making a show of welcoming open debate the page owner deleted my comment because it was too challenging. I feel complimented to be placed alongside the obvious target of the page, Steven I Weiss, who exposed Broyde’s duplicity. Before I share my deleted comment, I want to encourage anyone else worried about their comments being deleted to place a copy of their comment here.

The questions they deleted were:

  1. “Support Rabbi Broyde” can you answer one way or the other whether in fact you are Rabbi Broyde?
  2. If you give us an answer that is later found to be false, will you invoke your constitutional rights and the precedent of the Federalist Papers?
  3. I realize Rabbi Broyde has privacy rights. But can you or Rabbi Broyde tell us how many pseudonyms Rabbi Broyde has used over the years?
  4. If you feel that questions goes too far, could you tell us how many other of your inventions did the real Rabbi Broyde claim to know?
  5. Can you tell us how many of your inventions said good things about you as if they weren’t you?
  6. Can you tell us whether your announced tshuvah has or will include directly contacting anyone you deceived in ways similar to your deception with the fictional “Rabbi Goldwasser.”

6 thoughts on “Questions that Broyde and His Supporters Will Not Answer

  1. They took down at least one lengthy thread in which they tried to discredit Weiss by mentioning that he’d been kicked out of Skokie high school and YU. THey linked to an old online interview on which they thought demonstrated that the editor of the Forward fired him because he was a lousy reporter, while the full quote indicated that Goldberg thought he was immature but brilliant with great potential, and that he regretted not having the resources to mentor him properly 10 years ago. I had pointed that out in the comments, but now that and many other discussions are gone.

    • Yup. When you are supporting the unsupportable you must use deception and censorship. I suspect Broyde is behind this. He is foolishly revealing even more of his unsavory side. It is tragic. He is a talented man who is immature and overreached. Now he is in danger of losing everything all because of petty vanity.

  2. Anyone who shows himself as skilled in fakery and manipulation as Broyde appears to have done in his use of his various sockpuppets and has done so for over 20 years cannot be regarded as “a talented man who is immature and overreached”. He’s a systematic intellectual fraudster and deceiver. Such people are almost invariably risk-takers– not just driven by petty vanity.

    • It is an interesting question. Will we discover fraud in his published works? I am guessing we won’t. But time will tell, especially now that people will be scrutinizing his work more carefully.

  3. The question is, why would Broyde just resort to using fake rabbinical characters who confirm his offbeat halachic stances by reference to their supposed personal contacts with conveniently dead poskim hador just for the sake of winning points on internet discussions, helping his candidature for the Chief Rabbi post along and advising the Chief Rabbi on his siddur? If he goes to those sort of lengths for those purposes, why would he refrain meticulously from doing so in the course of his published works? This is so much like the serial unravelling of so many intellectual fraudsters once a few examples came out and crowd sourcing got to work. Johann Hari was initially caught out over one article. Then a whole bundle of fakery came out which made it clear that this had routinely been his practice. Likewise, David Irving was found to have made some misinterpretations of abstruse sources. But once a team of researchers got to work on the whole body of his work, Prof Richard Evans and his team found that he had routinely profoundly misrepresented what his sources said so as to exonerate Hitler time after time. And of course a few errors identified in Saif al Islam Gaddafi’s online PhD rapidly multiplied into dozens and pagesful, once people started running his texts through anti-plagiarism software.

    But even were no more of these deceptions exist, the use of the fake rabbinical characters to lend false authority to pushing halachic stances, and the systematic deception of Chief Rabbi Sacks by introducing “Rabbi Hershel Goldwasser” into the advisory process for his siddur make Broyde utterly unworthy to hold any rabbinical or academic appointment, in my view.

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