Israeli Society Footnotes
M. Eliany ©
Vanunu is a hero,
unfortunately for him and us,
a mistaken one.
He deserves praise for having had
to point out a mistaken path
Israel should have never taken.
He had the right to voice his objections…
But in doing so,
he should have never mentioned his work place.
Vanunu paid a heavy price for his mistake
in a system that fails to recognize
of the difficult to follow
and that has a tradition
The Samson Solution for Immoral Nations
Iran, like Russia, North Korea and Pakistan, invest much of what they have and donít have in atomic war means, instead of investing their resources in building an efficient modern economy to provide for their people. Germany and Japan do the exact opposite.
Israel, and some of its neighbors, is opposed to making any concessions to Iran, who is flexing its muscles through threats and aggressive deeds in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Gaza. But concessions will be made and Iran will remain with the capacity to produce atomic war heads any time it wants. Iran will also get the opportunity to spread its influence a bit more in the region, to the dismay of Israel and some of its neighbors.
The West is likely to make concessions to appease Iran, because it does not have as much to lose as Israel does. Tiny Israel cannot afford to make concessions to Iran, because one exchange of blows is likely to determine the fate of both sides.
The Samson solution is immoral for any nation, but bullies hardly care about morality anywhere.
Times are changing in Israel too
Innovation, the elixir of progress, has always cost people their jobs.
The current technological phase is likely to have a tremendous impact on jobs, perhaps even more than before. Most of the jobs at risk are at the lower end. Jobs demanding research, planning, creativity and managerial expertise will remain safer. Income gaps are likely to grow while the economy and job market are restructured. Anger about inequality is likely to grow. But politicians seem unprepared for the challenge of helping people through the growing dislocation.
The solution is in education and continuing education to prepare people for the next phase, but not only in education. Governments must redistribute the benefits of innovation by granting subsidized education and top up low wages in transitions between jobs. Governments should collect the cost of subsidized education and toping up low wages from employers benefiting from innovation.
Governments must also adopt innovative planning methodologies based on research, sharing its findings with the population at large in an ongoing process of consultation, leading to collaborative planning of a better future for all.
Governments would do better to make these changes before people get too angry, or to put it crudely, before ĎArab like Springsí spread everywhere.
Modern democracy needs reforms
M. Eliany © 2004
The concept of democracy has been based on representation. Voters elect representatives hoping the later would do the best to advance the common good. This works well when representatives are honest and effective. More recently, representatives have tended to cater to themselves under the influence of lobby groups and their vested interests. Furthermore, globalization and high-tech led to imbalances, due to tax evasion, in addition to more gains to the wealthy and less rewards to the working and middle classes, requiring vigorous government intervention to bring about equitable distribution of resources. Unfortunately, many representatives failed to meet the growing and complicated challenges. In the process, they seem to have let non-elected specialists, bureaucrats and economists, to make decisions which tend to advance the interest of lobby groups along with their vested interests, rather than the common good. Consequently, more voters feel left out, making no effort to vote at all or seek comfort in protest or political extremes. This trend is not leading to positive and constructive directions. Democratic reforms must be based on sharing advanced up to date knowledge with the general population, as well as, with the educated and activist non-profit groups, in an ongoing process of consultation, leading to planning which serves the common good, not only high tech flyers and global business.