The rambling thoughts of a Modern Orthodox Chassid (whatever that means). Contact me at emansouth @

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Strategic Thinking, or the Lack Thereof

The situation in the Five Towns involving Gourmet Glatt gets uglier and uglier. An anonymous letter has been making the rounds in support of GG that is intended to put pressure on the Vaad. Orthomom has been following this matter closely (although she has not yet piped in on the letter) and I have zero interest in getting into the details. Suffice it so say, it's been a very sad chapter all around.

(An aside. I have absolutely no use for anonymous letters. They make me crazy. If you aren't willing to put your name on it, don't send it. It's cowardly. But we digress).

Instead, I will focus on an aspect of this situation that has slipped under the radar. It is a topic that is near and dear to me and one that I have written about previously in different contexts. To wit, the absolute absence of strategic thinking by any of the parties involved in this dispute.

My current job requires me to build consensus among parties with very divergent interests. In order to do this, I must always think strategically. Indeed, one could argue that the most important part of my job is to think strategically. I don't make any significant moves without thinking through their short, medium and long term consequences. I am pretty good at what I do mainly because I think this way.

So, a few questions:

What was GG thinking when they hired a second mashgiach? Did they consider how the Vaad was likely to react? Did they really think that the Vaad would not react? Did it occur to GG that they were forcing the Vaad to act?

What was the Vaad thinking when they suddenly pulled their hashgacha and suggested to the community rabbanim that GG be boycotted? Did they consider that their ban might not stick? Did they consider the consequences of a ban that did not stick?

What a mess. I don't really know anything about the specifics of this case (nor do I wish to) but it's hard to believe that a settlement could not have been reached whose consequences would have been far better than the current fiasco .

BTW, if anyone wants me to broker a deal, you know where to reach me. Pro bono.



  • At 9:40 PM, Blogger Joe Schick said…

    "I don't make any significant moves without thinking through their short, medium and long term consequences."

    This is in sharp contrast to some of your early season fantasy football moves.

  • At 5:51 AM, Blogger MoChassid said…

    i knew you would bring that up. But I was a pretty quick study, you have to admit.

  • At 9:43 AM, Blogger Tova said…

    MoC and friends, can you claify a point for me-- here's a quote from the letter:

    "The Vaad has specific tasks to fulfill. It keeps the eiruvin and the mikva'os, and it gives hechsherim on most, but not all, of the stores."

    Does the Vaad have jurisdiction with regard to eruvin and mikvaot, as it's a Vaad HaKashrut, not a Vaad HaRabonim (as in Queens)?

  • At 11:01 AM, Blogger MoChassid said…

    no clue.

  • At 9:46 PM, Blogger orthomom said…

    MO, I didnt opine on this letter because an anonymous letter purporting to bed concerned citizens taking one side or another is completely meaningless. Such a letter could be written and released by anyone, and certainly by someone with a horse in this race. I find the letter no more compelling than the myriad anonymous comments being left on my site (some quite nasty). So truthfully, I found the letter to be a pretty irrelevant development in this sad state of affairs.

  • At 8:47 AM, Blogger MoChassid said…


    I agree.


Post a Comment

<< Home