Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations
17 February '11
Israel's economy is booming:
The Israeli economy easily outstripped forecasts in last year's final quarter, achieving annualized growth of a stellar 7.8 percent. While growth rates in other developed countries range from vanishingly small to around 3 percent, Israeli gross domestic product grew 4.5 percent last year, the Central Bureau of Statistics said yesterday.
This is yet another indication of the fact that things are going well in Israel at the moment. They don't always, and whenever they do they can be reliably counted upon not to by-and-by, and even when things are momentarily pretty good, they're never remotely perfect. Still, as such things go, Israel is doing well right now. Since reliable polls always tell that even when things aren't going well, Israelis tend to be proud of their country and confident about their future, you can see why this particular moment might not be a good time to bring masses of peeved folks onto the streets to kvetch about the government.
Unless you live in the Israeli branch of the far-Left alternative universe, that is. If you do, your personal situation is probably fine, you're employed, you travel often to visit like-minded friends and colleagues in other lands, you haunt the usual eateries and cultural events where folks like you congregate and bemoan how bad things are, and you're convinced that the end of the world is nigh or if it isn't it ought to be. Recently you've had the added aggravation of living in one of the few Middle Eastern countries where the government can't be toppled by mass demonstrations. (Because the government routinely gets toppled at the ballot box, once every 3 years on average).
As such folks go, Meirav Michaeli isn't particularly rabid. In the taxonomy of Israelis with odd positions, she's somewhere at the edge of reasonable left-wing, looking yearningly leftward over at the loonies and wishing she could join them, but not managing the trick since she's not fundamentally against the idea of a Jewish state. Nor, it must be said, can anyone castigate her for deep thinking. She's a secondary media celebrity, whose main distinction is a comical attempt to sanitize the Hebrew language of its gender conjugations. (David Ben Gurion also once tried to ban a useful Hebrew word, and was heartily laughed at by everyone, but in the meantime he also founded the state, won a war, brought in a million Jews from less hospitable climes, and generally kept himself busy).
So, here's Michaeli agonizing about how the Israelis are too dumb to emulate the Egyptians. To be honest, I'm not certain I quite understand what she's trying to say, but it's sure to give you something to smile about, and that can't be bad.
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