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  • Sunday, October 29, 2006


    Keith Wasserstrom's Second Defense: I Acted In Accordance With Jewish Law

    This article in the October 29, 2006 edition of the Miami Herald describes how Keith studied Jewish law and ethics at lunch meetings, and contains a quote from Menashe Frank, described as a close friend of Keith Wasserstrom and a fellow lawyer who has known Wasserstrom for the past 12 years:

    In the time I've been with him, I've seen him only act with accordance to
    ethics and that's why I firmly believe in this case, when all the facts come
    out, I'm very confident that he'll be shown to have acted within the ethical
    framework of Jewish law.

    I guess Menashe Frank is saying that, according to Jewish law, it is permissible for an elected official to falsify ethics disclosure forms, and to make a few extra shekels down the road by lobbying his fellow elected officials to give a lucrative contract to a company who just happens to be his law firm's client. This might be a winning argument, if Keith was going to be judged by the Sanhedrin.

    So Keith's first defense was the City Attorney said it was ok. The article does not report Keith is retreating from that defense, but it does suggest Keith's second defense: I'm a good little Jewish boy and the Torah says what I did is ok.

    My parents were both Jewish, I went to Hebrew school, and I was Bar Mitzvah. My opinion: It is an insult to the Jewish religion for Keith and his friends to try to absolve Keith's apparently unlawful alleged conduct by (figuratively) wrapping him in a tallis and implying that purported conformance with some religious code trumps or excuses compliance with Florida law.

    Update: On November 15, 2006, I was contacted by Menasche Frank, the friend of Keith Wasserstrom who was quoted in the October 29, 2006 Miami Herald article. Mr. Frank made the following points of clarification:

    I have known Keith for 15 years and we are friends so I know more than the average guy.In 2002(or whatever year)I met Arnold Goodman(Keiths Uncle)and the CEO of the sludge company and as far as I was concerned everything was 100%.I was offered a finderrs fee(commission)if I were able to help them secure anytype of contract.I passed on this opportunity and again let me state,"Everything was done on the proper fashion""
    It is irrelevant as to how good a jew Keith is or is not. Remember in America we have a thing known as seperation of church and state. Just because he feels he is above the law because of some higher power does not exempt him from the law of this fine nation. Point is he got gready and got caught with his hand in the cookie jar. Now Keith has to pay the price and while he is in jail he can ask his god why him. To bad his un-indicted coconspirator isn't facing the music also.
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