Thursday, September 19, 2019

Denying Reality


A very strange thing happened in the Israel elections. Eighty thousand people voted for Itamar Ben Gvir's Otzma party, which failed to pass the threshold.

It's not strange that Otzma failed to pass the threshold. That was completely obvious and predictable. What's very strange is that all these people voted for Otzma, even though it was completely obvious and predictable that they wouldn't pass the threshold.

Getting into the Knesset requires about 140,000 votes. In 2013 Otzma ran independently and received just 66,775 votes. In the previous elections, just a few months ago, Ben Gvir was running along with Smotrich (Ichud HaYemin) and Peretz (Bayit Yehudi) and received 160,000 votes. In this election, Otzma was running without Ichud HaYemin and Bayit Yehudi. How on earth did they think that they were going to more than double their numbers and get another eighty thousand missing votes?!

Yes, there were some polls that showed them clearing the thresholds. But polls are based on a very small sample size and are notoriously inaccurate, with a margin of error that makes all the difference. The numbers just weren't sufficient. Zehut and Noam, showing a rare streak of realism, pulled out, and Otzma had hopes of getting some of their votes; but there was no way that Otzma was going to get all or even most of those voters, and Noam probably had very few to begin with.)

In the run-up to the elections, I saw a lot of Otzma voters say the most absurd things. In response to people pointing out that they just didn't have the numbers, they replied "You think you're a prophet?! God decides!" No, I don't need to be a prophet; I am reading the past and present, not the future. And no, God doesn't decide which party people vote for. They made entirely irrelevant claims like, "If everyone who is sympathetic to our cause votes for us, then we will get in!" They seemed to be unaware that the point is that there aren't that many people who are sympathetic to their cause, and even with those who are, the fact is that many of them are not actually going to vote for Otzma. It was a complete detachment from reality. Today, many of them are saying that they would have gotten in, were it not for the fact that so many people didn't vote for them. Well, yes. That's how it works.

Some Otzma voters claimed that they didn't care about whether their party would get in or not. Some said that it was just about showing the public how many people are passionate about this cause. Well, they showed the public that there aren't very many!

Several others, some of whom I know to be very fine people, said that they regardless of Otzma's low (I would say zero) chances of getting in, they wanted to "vote their conscience." Very noble. Very admirable. Except that it's completely ridiculous.

Throwing away your vote in order to "vote your conscience" is just silly. The only reasonable excuse for ever encouraging people to throw away their vote is if the election results are truly insignificant either way, which is rarely anyone's perspective. The value of democracies is that you can influence the direction of the country. You can bring about good and prevent evil. You can encourage wise decisions and discourage bad ones. Yes, you have to compromise some of your values and work with people that you disagree with. But by doing so, you are able to exert influence on the bigger issues. You can prevent people from making well-meaning but foolish mistakes that can have absolutely catastrophic consequences. This is real life. Catastrophic consequences can mean thousands of people get killed. 

Now, in the previous elections, I also voted for a party that did not pass the threshold (Yamin HaChadash). But Yamin HaChadash learned the lesson that they just didn't have enough numbers (even though they had far more than Otzma) and so they pulled out. Even Zehut and Noam pulled out. So why didn't Otzma pull out? And why are they still not giving up? What pushed me to write this post was a comment that I saw this morning. Incredibly, an Otzma voter said that next time, they will have even more people and they will get in! Why are their voters so blind to the electoral reality?

The answer appears to be that these are people who are accustomed to ignoring reality. Otzma voters are ideologues whose entire political worldview is one that is based on ignoring reality. The Israeli Left ignored reality during the Rabin/Peres years; most of these people have since learned from their mistakes and left the Left. The extreme right is still ignoring reality.

You can talk all you want about how this land is rightfully ours and about how the Palestinians are our enemy and about how nations have historically always conquered and expelled their enemies and about how God helped the Maccabees. But the reality of today just doesn't work that way. (And it's also the case that not every Palestinian is evil!) No, Israel can't just carpet-bomb Gaza. Israel can't fight wars "without negotiations, without concessions and without compromises” (to quote the Otzma platform). Israel cannot do whatever it wants. There are other countries in the world, there are political realities, and Israel has to live with them. (For those who need convincing of this point, I strongly recommend reading Yehuda Avner's book The Prime Ministers.)

It's not nice to gloat over people whose party didn't do well and rub salt into the wound. But in this case there is an important lesson that they should learn. The only people willing to ignore reality and throw their votes away are people who vote for a platform that ignores reality. It's foolish, it's irresponsible, and it's morally wrong.

83 comments:

  1. "nations have historically always conquered and expelled their enemies "


    Actually even that isn't true. In 1846 the US went to war with Mexico and at the end of the war ended up annexing a third of Mexico's territory. One year later, all Mexican citizens living in that annexed area automatically became US citizens. There are far more examples like this throughout history than there are of conquest followed by expulsion.

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    1. Well, let's take the last century or so, then. What happened to all the Germans in the lands Poland annexed after World War II? What happened to the Greeks of North Cyprus? What happened to the all the Hindus of Pakistan, and lots of the Muslims of India? I can go on and on. Most of these things were not only condemned, they were actively applauded, and even aided, by all the Great and the Good. But Jews better not dream of it. (Of course, at least some Arabs *were* thrown out of Israel in 1948, and plenty of Jews were thrown out of the Arab world- and the West Bank and Gaza Strip.)

      And how many Mexicans were actually annexed by the US?

      Ah, just looked it up. Lightly populated (including many Americans), a few tens of thousands.

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    2. It's interesting you would choose that specific example. Google "Mexican Repatriation".

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    3. Those Mexicans were small in number and they were assimilated. This is what the conquering nations thought. When they failed to do so, they reasserted their independence later. Diverse and multi-cultural counties are torn by strife and are unsustainable. Diversity is a didaster.

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  2. So if every party running was racist except for one. And that liberal democratic party according to all predictions will not pass the threshhold, you think it insanit to vote for that party? In principle, I don't think it insane to vote for a party that will not win if think all other parities are leading you down the path of destruction.

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  3. why do you think that it is "completely ridiculous" to waste your vote for a party that you really believe in, and that saying "If everyone who is sympathetic to our cause votes for us, then we will get in!" as in your words "an entirely irrelevant claim" A: You don't want to give your vote to any of the other partys, so instead of wasting your vote (by not voting) B: you will USE your vote to show to others who believe in your values that next election there will be at least x amount of votes which will therefore encourage them to give their votes to hopefully at least pass the minimum requirement for entry to the Knesset. Ps. because maybe there really are at least 160,000 that are truly sympathetic to their cause..

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    1. You make a valid point, but it's also the case that Otzma has been around for a while now. They don't seem to be growing in popularity at a meaningful rate.

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  4. Two lost seats would not change anything. If Sheket/Bennett wanted they could bring them into the block. They did not because they did not want to be too religious. Under Bennett as education minister for example, the school textbooks teach about "normality" of families with same sex parents.

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    1. Actually, they didn't bring them in because they are widely regarded as racist, and people don't want to associate with them. Have you forgotten the widespread condemnation when people brought them in last election?

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    2. Good example of a true politician in action: will do anything for a position, will turn on a dime, if it suits him. Perfect. Incidentally,Mafdal and all its reincarnations just loved the educational ministry. Think, education, which is at the heart of the nation, is routinely given away in coalition negotiations to politicians, without any regard for their qualifications. Its somehow goes as self understood that any politician can head any ministry: Amir Peretz and Liberman to the Defense, Litzman to Health, Benett to Education! This is a total disaster. A totalitarian state will only have qualified professionals in these positions. A private will not head the Defense, a rabbi will not head Health and people from nowhere will obviously not head education.

      And finally, how many parasitic ministers and vice ministers will the coming government have in order to bring everybody on board to loot the country?

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    3. Yitz Finkelstein - come now, nothing is "widespread" in a divided country. Lapid and his followers also got widespread condemnation. Nobody ever got wider condemnation than Rabin did, during his disastrous time in office, and he simply ignored it. You worry about what your voters think, not what other people think.

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    4. Correct. Yitzhak Shamir, (of the Stern Gang!) wanted nothing to do with Kahana. (Correctly.)

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  5. What's sad is that there are 80,000 racists in Israel.
    All of them suffering from a childish simplistic worldview that they never grew out of as they grew older.

    Any racists here reading this who voted for Otzma can get stuffed.
    Zero tolerance for racism.

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    1. You really make me laugh now! This blog lives and dies by evolution.The races, nations and ethnicities evolved in separate environments and in response to different evolutionary pressures. There is nothing more real then the differences between them. Denyers of evolution and race are denying science.

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    2. Yakov,

      You may want to learn what racism is. It's definitely not what you think it is.

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    3. While I am far from the worldview of that party, it is not racist. Having two populations of different ethnicities, religions, and languages, who are hostile to one another, and where one of them views the other as a usurper and a thief of its land and nation, is a recipe for continuing violence. As the history of the last 70 years bears out.

      Their solution is absurd, but their identification of the problem is accurate, and not based on racial inferiority of any kind.

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    4. The problem is you still see these socially created categories as defining the characteristics, attitudes and moralities of their constituents.
      E.g. All Jews are good because of their ethnicity, all Arabs are bad.
      And that's what makes you a childish racist.

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    5. And you mistakenly conflate the humanities with science.

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    6. Yakov,you are forgetting the following salient points.

      1) 70% of genetic variation in dogs is within breeds and only 30% is between breeds. Therefore pitbulls are basically the same as chihuahuas and the only difference is in social conditioning.
      2) Something bad happened to someone 100s of years ago, which is why his descendants consistently flunk basic algebra. No other explanation is conceivable.
      3) We all bleed red.
      4) Something, epigenetics, something.
      5) You're racist.

      I think I have covered the main points.

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    7. In today's PC culture being called a racist is an honor.

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    8. Is it really?
      Maybe among idiots, it is.

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  6. WHy vote for Trump when the polls say Clinton will win?

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    1. Adding to my previous point. Even in the states like NY and CA where Trump will never carry the electoral college, one should vote because the popular vote adds to his legitimacy.

      Understanding politics isn't one of our host's strengths.

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  7. Yes. Minor quibbles aside, everything you said is more or less correct. More than that - even those parties that do have substantial numbers (like, now and past, Shas, UTJ, Shinui, Meretz, Mafdal, BY, etc.) do not advance a country's overall interests, as much as it feels good to vote for them. They merely perpetuate status quo - sometimes a good thing, but often not.

    Man basically comes in only two models, and everything else is just a question of degree. Likud and [in its current version]Labor are the foundation, like Conservative/Liberal and Republican/Democrat. Both of those parties are capable of representing and absorbing smaller parties WITHIN them. Proportional parliamentary representation, with kingmakers like Liberman who cant get along with either of the major parties (b/c of problems with both Arabs and Charedim) is a pretty lousy system.

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    1. "Proportional parliamentary representation, with kingmakers like Liberman who cant get along with either of the major parties (b/c of problems with both Arabs and Charedim) is a pretty lousy system." I finally agree with something that DF said! The problem is that even with first past the post, Israel would be hard to handle because of the relative geographic segregation of the different streams. Think of the UK with the Scottish and Northern Ireland Parties, but worse.

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    2. All any country needs is two parties. Beyond that, right or left, it just turns elections into one-party issues, and no matter how important they are, country's have more than one issue to deal with.

      From my view, the left made a huge tactical blunder by indicting Bibi. The public saw it for the political gamesmanship it was, very similar to the "Russian interference" hoax here in the US. It just further destroys leftwing credibility. In addition, it basically forced Bibi to run again. Without that bit of foolishness, he might simply have retired from a long and distinguished career. Because of the indictment, he had strong personal motivation to run again.

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  8. It made oerfect sense to show your true electoral strength
    in order to he able to negotiate from the realistic position of strength in the next election cycle. A party that brings in 70,000 votes deserves better then 8th and 11th places on the list and that was the point that was made.

    Anyway the problem of Israel is the democracy that keeps this country in the perpetual state if chaos and paralysis. All parties should be outlawed and a totalitarian state should replace the current system. The unity government in the works will be neither a government nor united. Democracy is a disaster.



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    1. Can't tell if you are kidding or insane.

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    2. The world has existed without democracy for thousands of years. Democracy is a fraud. The people are manipulated and brain washed to keep voting for politicians that unfailingly fool them. The elites rule regardless of who is elected. This process is unsustainable and will lead to national disaster and not only in Israel.

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    3. Except that a party that could bring in 70,000 votes to a party with 7 assured seats of its own should *precisely* have gotten the 8th (and 10th) and eleventh places on the list - thereby requiring that said smaller party deliver on its promises...
      All of the posturing for a higher place in the list ends up being pure jockeying for pride that led to all of those 70,000 votes being needlessly wasted.
      And what the country needs is a non-list system in which Knesset members are elected personally, thus allowing any specific person who can muster 70,000 votes to be in the Knesset instead of so many talentless party hacks.

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    4. Yamina has 3 factions with ימין החדש having 3 and three other 2 having 2 seats each. Why Otzma that brings in 2 seats should get the 8th and the 10th amid pronouncements that they can only bring 15,000 votes? Because political parties and politicians are crooks and a total disaster for this country. Yamina was playing political games at the critical time in the country's history when unity was required. Now they are shifting the blame on Otzma. It's just politics as usual.

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  9. Rabbi Slifkin,can you please clarify:
    Do you think that Israel should carpet bomb Gaza but can't because other countries would object; or do you think Israel should not carpet bomb Gaza as it would be morally wrong?

    Your post is ambiguous.

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    1. I deliberately made it ambiguous so as not to distract from the point of the post.

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    2. Why are people childishly obsessed with carpet bombing Gaza? There is simply no need to do so to solve the problem. Does anyone have doubts if Gaza would carpet bomb Israel if they could?

      Incidentally, what do you think is morality? It's off topic, so I'm not sure we should go there.

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    3. What, pray tell, could possibly be morally wrong about carpet bombing an enemy city? Unless you think Truman was morally wrong to bomb Hiroshima, or indeed, unless you think the Torah itself is morally wrong. In either of which case further argument would simply be a waste of time.

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    4. Do I understand you correctly then if I say that you don't have a moral problem with Otzma, just a political calculation problem?

      Your post seems to imply that the reality the Otzma voters are ignoring is the political reapity not the moral reality (which is the reality that their beliefs are racist)?

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    5. DF,
      Your morals are so messed up its hard to know where to begin.
      Yes Hiroshima was a crime.
      Yes your version of Torah is sick.

      Recall: Avraham argued to save Sodom and Gemora. Today's Orthodox Jews would have bayed for blood if they were there.

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    6. It's not so clear that Hiroshima was a crime. It may have avoided even more casualties.

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    7. Fozziebear - you wasted your time, but I wont.

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  10. >Throwing away your vote in order to "vote your conscience" is just silly.

    These are far from the last elections (unfortunately.) Therefore, the fact that 70K people were willing to vote for Otzma in a relatively hopeless situation (castrated leadership, total lack of strategy, incompetent tactics) means that if the situation gets better, more will vote. An example of how the situation could improve can be gleaned from Cummings' Brexit campaign, where relative outsiders used modern technology and methods to pull a win out of left field. Getting from 70K to 140K or 700K is a lot easier than getting from 0 to those numbers.

    Further, the function of a vote is only formally to influence policy (especially at the edges.) In actuality, a vote is mostly signalling. So these people (myself included) wanted to signal that they wanted no part in the behavior of a Bibi or Ganz-led coalition, specifically, the continued destruction of Jewish houses, continued concessions to the Arabs, continued funding of Hamas, continued torture and kangaroo courts...whom should I have voted for to not be a party to those things, Rav Nathan?

    >The value of democracies is that you can influence the direction of the country.

    Let's ask a true expert in this field, Dr. Carroll Quigley.

    “The argument that the two parties should represent opposed ideals and policies... is a foolish idea. Instead, the two parties should be almost identical, so that the American people can throw the rascals out at any election without leading to any profound or extensive shifts in policy. Then it should be possible to replace it, every four years if necessary, by the other party which will be none of these things but will still pursue, with new vigor, approximately the same basic policies.”

    In other words, your votes for the centrist parties by definition do not influence the direction of the country.

    >You can prevent people from making well-meaning but foolish mistakes that can have absolutely catastrophic consequences.

    This is idiocy. Do you think a single Begin voter intended to return the Sinai? A single Sharon voter intended to ethnically cleanse Gaza of its Jews? You can't PREVENT anything. You can become COMPLICIT.

    >But the reality of today just doesn't work that way.

    Because our leaders (elected, judicial and bureaucratic) do not wish for it to work that way. Because their values are those of the Council on Foreign Relations and the New York Times, and not those of the Torah. When Israel had leaders whose values were different, its actions were different, and the world did nothing to prevent the expulsion of hundreds of thousands of Arabs in 1948 and tens of thousands in 1967 (would have been hundreds of thousands, but Dayan didn't want it to be.) The world, in case you haven't noticed, has its own interests and problems, and largely pays lip service to its proclaimed values, unless by formally addressing those values it can serve its interests. Who cares about the Palestinians enough to take a big economic loss or go to war? Nobody, that's who. The only reason that they are still here is that they serve as a useful proxy for Israeli elites, and a boogeyman to justify continued massive taxation, extralegal privileges for the secret services and security expenditures.

    >And it's also the case that not every Palestinian is evil!

    What a foolish non-sequitur. Was it the case that every Amalekite was evil? Every Canaanite? Every Greek or Roman? Every German? Of course not. What does that matter? Either you expel your enemies as a nation, or they will keep killing members of your nation. Which is what we see happening.

    You should really stick to zoology, or perhaps learn more about political science before you go making statements that resemble 7th grade civics class in their lack of sophistication and connection to reality.

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    1. Hmm. This is very well stated. I think I agree with you now.

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    2. Democracy is a fraud. Period. People's wishes are routinely ignored, electoral promises are broken or not fulfilled and nothing gets done. It's a total disaster. Only a totalitarian state can safeguard and promote the national interests while supressing subversion. Nothing, absolutely nothing, can be more disgusting then the horse trading which is going to take place to form a unity government by the people who only yesterday were shouting that they would never sit together.

      Democracy is Israel's biggest problem, not the Arabs, but Otzma was the only party to vote for to express your disgust with the current system.

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    3. "Because their values are those of the Council on Foreign Relations and the New York Times, and not those of the Torah."

      Now THAT'S 7th grade civics.

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  11. I understand the need to have an electoral threshold. But on the other hand there is something undemocratic about forcing people to choose between the candidates they really want to be elected and the risk of wasting their vote. The ideal solution would be to allow 2nd and 3rd choices. If your first choice doesn't meet the threshold then your 2nd choice kicks in.

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    1. This is a brilliant idea. But the reason it would never be implemented is the same reason they raised the threshold a few years ago. Because tyranny benefits from the inability of new upstarts to come in and replace them. And allowing the "2nd choice" option would take away the entire barrier to people voting for small upstarts. They want that psychological barrier in place, in addition to the numerical threshold barrier.

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    2. There's no winning solution: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arrow's_impossibility_theorem

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  12. Why should I vote for party that plans to damage my country? If so I prefer not to vote at all.

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  13. This is not an exclusively Israeli phenomenon. 6.5 million people voted for someone other than Clinton or Trump in 2016.

    https://www.270towin.com/2016_Election/

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  14. "And it's also the case that not every Palestinian is evil!"

    In fact there are about 1.9MM of Palestinians who are citizens of Israel and living is Israel with full rights to travel anywhere in the country. They are inside of all the walls and boundaries and yet the somehow the country remains standing.

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  15. Your assessment of what Israel can and can't do is completely erroneous in my opinion. As to your other point: It is only principled voters that make a difference because politicians must cater to them to get their vote. Netanyahu and Bennett don't have to please voters like you who will vote for mainstream right-wing voters no matter what. They do have to please voters who might vote for Otzma or not vote at all. It is these voters that pull Netanyahu and co. to the right and they influence the future for the better more than anyone else. So, no, principled voters are not stupid. They're actually very wise a(they have the added benefit of not betraying their conscience).

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  16. In that book, Avner elaborates on the decision of Menachem Begin to bomb the Iraqi nuclear reactors against the will of the American President and State Dept, how Begin defied all the other nations and successfully carried out this mission, how Reagan was mad at him for a few days over it, and how that anger between friends dissipated and the whole world moved on. If anything Avner's point gives credence to the Otzma idea of fighting wars without the compromise to false morality and moralizing of other nations that we so often see from Israel and its suicidal Purity of Arms doctrine as well as its diplomacy in a similar vein.

    However, all their voters were very stupid for voting for them in this election. That is absolutely true. They threw their votes in the garbage bin. Those votes could have helped the rightwing bloc.

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  17. I'm not sure I agree with this sentiment. I think your idea of "throwing away your vote" is another's "voting conscience" - and that is democracy.

    If everyone thought like you, they would only vote between the parties that polling (which, as you admitted are notoriously wrong) showed had a chance. I'm not sure that HAS to be a thing.

    I can see how someone who thinks like you can decide to vote but that way but that doesn't work for everyone and I do not think it's ridiculous to see it the other way.

    (For the record, I am not Israeli and did not vote in this election. However, I did opt out of voting for Trump or Clinton in the last US elections for "voting conscience" reasons and chose to vote for a no-party candidate.)

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  18. That book, 'The Prime Ministers of Israel', was a good read and an excellent illustration what a fraud democracy really is. Nothing illustrated better how people's voice is worthless. I recommend נוסחת פרס for the same reason. Peres was a very interesting and powerful personality and I could only wish that the author would have shared more details with us. However, as a servant of the people, as an instrument of expressing the popular will? He did whatever he wanted with the total disregard for everyone and everything. This is a political system for any country? אם חפצים חיים אנחנו democracy has to be eliminated.

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    1. Haven't you read Abarbanel on Parashat Shoftim?
      (where he advocates for democracy as better than a monarchy)

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    2. I did, but a Venetian Republic isn't today's impotent democracy. There is no perfect or permanent political order. Republican government gave Venetians a stake in the enterprise of dominating the global trade. It was excellent for their particular situation and never stopped them from brutally enslaving and exterminating their enemies. A totalitarian state is the only way out of the current disaster, but will not last forever, just like nothing ever does. For israel to live the democracy has to die.

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    3. He's also pretty clear as to why a totalitarian solution is a bad idea.
      And his response is directly relevant to modern democracy even though he name checks the Italian ones.
      Don't misrepresent him.

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  19. I would have voted for Otzma not because I believe in its platform but because O. would make things harder to those trying to give Palestinians land and help keep it to a minimum. But having voted for them two elections ago and wasting my vote I have had to compromise.

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  20. 'And why are they still not giving up?'

    Because they are the truly ideological party. Falange Espanol didn't pass the electoral threshold in the elections prior to the civil war. A year later they were the largest party in the rebel zone. The idea of believing in what you are preaching seems foreign to you, but as someone had famously said at much more adverse circumstances: אם תרצו אין זו אגדה.

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  21. "Please stop attributing your favorite platitude to me." -- Albert Einstein

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  22. What we are seeing here is the inevitable results of changes in Religious Zions since 1967 and the next generation of religious zionists who were educated in increasingly right wing yeshivot.

    The RZ world is going / has gone off the deep end into extremism and fundamentalism, advocating increasingly simplistic solutions to real world problems because their source of thought has gone from being a combination of Torah study with integration in the world to being the study of Torah and the rejection of integration with the outside world which they now reject as being corrupt. (Remind anyone here of anything?)

    It's a massive tragedy.
    Instead of becoming the glue in Israeli society the RZ Jews are now a lunatic fringe.

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  23. Otzmah bring with them significantly more supporters than National Union, about the same as Bayit Yehudi and about 2/3rds as much as Bennett/Shaked. They accepted a deal before the previous election that was totally unfair and what they were offered before this one was outright insulting.

    All in all, there's a lot of blame to go around:
    1) Shaked shouldn't be leading the religious party, she should be in Likud being groomed as Netanyahu's successor, but she can't because Netanyahu is captive to his whackjob wife.
    2) Hundreds of thousands of low IQ right-wing voters choose Shas again and again, against their own interests and the interests of the nation because they are religiously blackmailed into it by the most outrageous and sickening propaganda.
    3) The Charedi parties refuse to tone down their parasitism enough to make a right wing government acceptable to middle of the road Israelis.

    Overall, we deserve to lose. Time to let the other side mess things up and get our act together for the next round.


    I'd prefer to discuss something else though. Rabbi Slifkin makes reference to 'political realities' and claims that 'thinks don't work that way'. This is what we are always told, but we never hear specified *what* these political realities are and *how* things actually do work. Let's say there are political obstacles to expelling our enemies. I don't deny it, but let's itemise them and work out a way of getting round them.

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    1. "3) The Charedi parties refuse to tone down their parasitism enough to make a right wing government acceptable to middle of the road Israelis."

      There was a Jerusalem Post article which showed that a clear majority of Israelis don't want to see the Charedim as partners in any coalition. It's not just that people don't want to vote for an Ultra-Orthodox party--they're actually disgusted by them. That's significant, I believe.

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    2. Exactly, and Smotritz or whoever, I dont remember exactly, was claiming that all they had brought was 15,000 votes or something. Political parties are a cancer.

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  24. Another reason people don't vote for them is they go on har habayis,which is forbidden by almost everyone ,then arabs kill jews,ר"ל...look up ariel sharon infamous deeds1...

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  25. An honest look at the Torah (Bichtav ubealpeh) reveals that enemies should be expelled. Yes, just as Dovid HaMelech did not expel all the Philistines in one day but took into account realpolitik considerations, so too today the Philistinians can and must be expelled in accordance with windows of opportunity which do present themselves, such as after the 6 Day War, after the outbreak of the First and Second Intifadas, etc.

    The difference between the hallucinatory Left and the Torah Right is that the latter is based upon the truth, both halachically and factually.

    Please spare us how not all Palestinians are evil. Who says all Philistinians were either? Halacha goes according to the norm, not the exception. In addition, the issue is not merely one of who is "good" or "evil". The issue is that even many of the "good" ones believe that this land belongs to them.

    Expelling them will ultimately happen. It is our job to make this happen by making it a goal and working towards it.

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    1. Juvenile moron.

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    2. There are opportunities all the time. Millions have fled Syria and Iraq during recent conflicts, Israeli and PA Arabs could be transferred there. There will be opportunities in the future. The problem is the Jews, not the Arabs.

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    3. Isn't it sweet? All the theocratic racists coming out of the woodwork to antagonize and defame the Arab sector now that they have exercised their rights in the face of incredible defamation and threats from the right. They are - frankly - braver and more upstanding than their detractors.

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  26. I've never voted for Otzma or Kach because I don't like the incitement to violence and rabble rousing rhetoric. May do so in the future though. Israel doesn't have political leadership of statue. What it needs is someone to clearly and in a few words to formulate the problems and the solutions and to lead the nation after all political parties are outlawed and the courts dismissed. Jose Antonio was an example of such a leader. He said it all in under 2 minutes. Israel needs a man like this, but until then chaos and paralysis will rule with great opportunities wasted. What has Israel done with Trump in the white hiese? Nothing.

    https://youtu.be/Z-979vsPYZk

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  27. An interesting book to read is דברים שרואים מכאן by אריה אלדד. He examines the what were the political views of the 5 Likud prime ministers and how they had changed once they came to power. He answers the question why the right wing politicians, Shamir being the exception, inevitably turn left once elected. This book illustrates once again why democracy is a complete fraud.

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    Replies
    1. Begin never turned left. He did give up Yamit, which was painful, but he saw a real opportunity for peace with the biggest power broker in the region. Time has shown the wisdom of that. A very far and painful cry from the sheer madness of Ariel Sharon.
      Bibi, too, has not turned left. He was handed a real disaster by Rabin, a man responsible for the death of more Jews than anyone in the last 70 years. He's done, and looks like will continue to do, an excellent job.

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  28. If a group of voters abhors any compromise with anybody about anything, on principle, who would expect it to unite with others to make the best of a sub-optimal situation?

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  29. Now with Meretz/Democratic Union MK calling for a "Center"-Left-Arab-Haredi coalition government, it should become clear that all the anti-haredi angling and fearmongering was nothing more than a ruse. The design all along was to replace a rightwing govt with the leftwing and to oust Netanyahu. Sorry to say, Rabbi Slifkin, but you fell for it.

    https://twitter.com/tamarzandberg/status/1175424574038716416

    No matter how many valid points the blue and white and others may have made about haredi society, they weren't made in good faith, they were a deception. If it takes UTJ to get them a coalition govt, they will welcome them in, just as was warned to you.

    But even more enthusiastically they are welcoming in the recommendation of the Joint List who claims to the President that they are the Landlords of Eretz Yisrael.

    So you thought that toppling Bibi would ensure a check against haredi society's power, but actually it meant empowering Arab society. For all the hate on the Haredi Welfare State, the financially unsustainable and high birth rate Arab sector (with its own handouts and refusal to participate in society, and added bonus of loyalty to Israel's enemies) deserves equal ire.

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    Replies
    1. Democracy is disgusting. Watch now the political parties abandoning their principles on the ensuing 'unity' government negotiations. A totalitarian state is the only hope.

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    2. There is an upside here. Gimmel has spent the last three decades building up a massive patronage empire and the fact is that both Sharon and Bibi just let them get away with it. (Bibi actually prefers having Gimmel MKs to Likud MKs, let alone other parties). Now there are only two options:

      1) Gimmel aren't able to maintain the flow of bribes, meaning that a significant number of vote controllers will withdraw endorsement. There are hundreds of thousands (not an exaggeration) of Charedim who would vote for Otzmah and other right wing parties if they weren't being personally instructed otherwise.
      2) Gimmel are able to keep the money flowing, but to do so they have to sign off on Lieberman's anti-Judaism agenda of chillul shabbat, Reform recognition, state promotion of sexual deviancy, and official classification of millions of goyim as Jewish. This will be the straw that breaks the camel's back and demonstrates to ordinary Charedim just how corrupt Litzmann and his gang really are.

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    3. Oh, Yakov, grow up! Politics is the art of the possible. It how we balance conflicting interests without fighting. Compromise isn't a compromise, it's the model.

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  30. "Haven't you read





    Abarbanel on Parashat Shoftim?
    (where he advocates for democracy as better than a monarchy)"

    Besides being Only a minority opinion but against greater heavyweights than himself
    ..
    the same Abarbanel who was dismissed out of hand by the Rav

    Not to suspect that one would let facts get in the way of a
    sociopolitical objective

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    Replies
    1. "Not to suspect..."
      Oh the irony

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    2. And I didn't bring Abarbanel as an argument over who's the 'bigger' rabbi, but because of the logic of his comment.
      1. Kings are a bad idea as they can go bad.
      2. Jews have Hashem instead of a King
      3. Democratic solutions are therefore a better idea (for Am Yisrael).

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    3. Surely Abarbanel didn't mean the chaos and the paralysis of the modern democracies. Don't you think?

      Delete
  31. Fozzie,et al
    Excellent
    And now declare all together:
    we will refrain hereafter therefore from showing disrespect to Bezalel Smotrich
    and we will all assiduously apologize to him







    ReplyDelete

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