Israeli Poverty Reaches Record Levels

Totally Jewish reports,

The level of poverty in Israel rose to unprecedented levels in the first half of 2005 according to official figures released this week.
The revelation sparked alarm amongst politicians, with opposition MKs slamming the government’s economic policies.
The National Insurance Institute’s annual poverty report showed that the total number of Israelis considered poor reached a record 1.6million, up from just over 1.5million in 2004.
According to the study, 738,100 children, more than a third of youngsters in Israel, remain below the poverty line, an increase of 24,500 from 2004.
NII director Yigal Ben Shalom said that the number of families defined as poor rose by nearly 10,000 to 403,400. Anyone earning less than 1,777 shekels (216UKP) a month, half the national average salary in 2004, was classed as impoverished by the report.
During the four years Ariel Sharon was in power the number of poor Israelis increased by 45 per cent.

Thank you Bibi. May you rot for your crimes against your people.
Anyone voting for Likud, Kadima and even Labor is voting for more of this.

17 thoughts on “Israeli Poverty Reaches Record Levels

  1. Give him a break! Oooh poverty lines and political games. Wow! Sure there is a discrepancy between the rich and poor, but the economy is thriving (especially compared to the turmoil of their nearby neighbors).
    Poverty lines are only subjective. When rates of malnutrition (not by choice) and illness rise, then you can worry and take shots at Bibi. Until then, the misinformation flies!

  2. “Thank you Bibi. May you rot for your crimes against your people.”
    There must be some Leftist shorthand at work here. Any attempt at showing the connection between Bibi and his policies and the poverty? Or is it enough to say that Bibi happened first, then the poverty, so it’s proven? Could any other factors be involved? Could the transition to a freer market cause short-term problems on the way to a long-term solution? Am I wasting my time posing these questions to people with no knowledge of economics?
    But here’s what disturbs me most. I saw no attempt in the post to claim that Bibi was acting in his own self-interest, so presumably, he acted on his good faith view of what was most beneficial to his country. Even if he’s dead wrong, is it right to say that he should rot?
    What about people who I think are wrong? Should I tell their Israel-slandering, Corrie-supporting, terrorism- excusing selves to rot?
    Maybe I should.

  3. Also, mobi, that link you provided didnt explain how bibi is to blames for this. In fact, it seems from both articles that poverty has been increasing long before bibi proposed his reforms.
    And even if this was the result of bibi, i dont see why failed economic policy makes someone a criminal who should rot in hell. If this were the case, you would propbably think jimmy carter is the biggest criminal around. And likewise, think that w. bush is a pretty good guy. I think its time you grow up, mobi.

  4. I’d like to see the details of this report – where’s the poverty growth? hyper-begatting muslims? russian xtians? We need a demographic breakdown..

  5. Nowhere does Mobius suggest that Bibi rot in ‘hell;’ he simply requests that he rot. Perhaps the idea is that he rot with a temporary leprosy while he contemplates the wrongness of his labor union busting and privatization activities, which destroy the standard of living of most, while making the privateers rich from their looting.
    The economy is thriving! Hahaha. This is exactly what my friend was claiming to me, last evening. He was adamant that the US economy is doing great. When I pointed out that he is having difficulty refinancing his home (which should have been paid off, by now), and that he doesn’t have health insurance, and that his car died and he can’t afford another, he said that he’s an aberration, and that I was being ‘hysterical.’

  6. That’s a great argument! We’ll determine the state of the economy of a country of 300 million people by … the status of one person.
    Actually, it’s not a great argument. It rots.

  7. There you go again, J, being literal. The irony of the anecdote, is that my friend is pretending that he is unique with his finacial problems. He prefers to pretend it is not that which it is: A very serious economic issue which is affecting the majority of the populace.

  8. Oh, gee whiz, where is the connection between a fast-talking, power-mongering, pro-corporate hardliner, his slew of capitol-hill style economic measures (Wisconsin-plan anyone?) and the widening gap between rich and poor? Duh…
    The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread.
    –Anatole France

  9. “The economy is thriving! Hahaha”
    I dont even think most fair minded liberals would deny that the economy is doing well. Just about every major economic indicator tells us this much. What happened? The same indicators that made us aware how well the economy was doing under Clinton are no longer reliable?
    Miriam, other than your friend, which economic indicators do you go by?

  10. Trust me I will not claim that poverty does not exist, but Israel is not a homogeneous western country that can easily be gauged using western standards and generalizations for two major reasons:
    -the religious/ultra-orthodox jews,
    -the arab, beduoins, and druze.
    the religious/ultra-orthodox jews
    Currently a small minority, but otherwise showing exponential growth. The pursuit of wealth and shopping for consumer products is not an ideal. Families consume basic necessities and are satisfied getting by on a relatively small income. Large families survive on much less than even small secular middle class families barely can handle. Main breadwinner is often the mother who works part-time in education, the father might either combine study with part-time job, or study full time in exchange for a govm’nt bursuray and forbidden to work.
    the arab, beduoins, and druze
    This segment, also showing growth yet decreasing, usually live in self-segregated towns and rural areas, many without even minimal infrastructure due to the non-western style choice of residential areas with a lack of proper urban planning. Large families and typically characterized by blue collar work as well. ‘Lower standard of living’ can be afforded by lack of otherwise ‘common’ expenses. Women usually do not work.
    Both these segments are characterized with single-income families as well as the lower importance placed on acheiving non-religious academic certification. Status symbols are different than those in the majority secular population.
    other than my cryptic writing, you can’t compare Israel to the States where ‘everyone’ lives in either cities or the burbs.
    Shabbat shalom.

  11. The Arab Bedouin may or may not choose self segregation, but they don’t choose to live in communities with few public services. That simply happens because of discrimination period. The Isreli govenment claims it is because the communities are illegal, but they don’t deny garbage collection or electricity to the hill top youths.

  12. Of course I was not using my friend as an ‘economic indicator.’ I was pointing out the irony of him constantly insisting that the economy is doing great, better than ever!
    An economy is not good because a handful of people are making a killing on hedge funds and other derivatives. An economy is not good because a dozen telemarketers call daily to purchase our indebtedness. An economy is not good because banks send frequent letters to people with mortgages, offering a lower rate on interest.
    How can an economy be good, in Israel, for example, when 20-25% of Israeli kids go to be hungry at least one night a week?
    How can the US be having any ‘upswing,’ when 30,000 Ford workers are about to lose their jobs, private pension funds have been looted, millions of people have NO health insurance, electricity and gas prices are outrageous, gasoline is still close to $3/gal, a minimum of two paychecks is needed to maintain a household?
    Economics isn’t ‘buying and selling;’ the level of physicial infrastructure is the competent measurement. How many jobs should be necessary to maintain a household? Can a family sustain and nourish its young for a minimum of 18 years? Are homes fit for human habitation? Are there enough schools? Do the schools have a decent teacher/student ratio, and are they in good physical condition? Does the household have access to competent healthcare? Are there decent paying jobs available? Is there decent public transportation available, at reasonable prices?
    How about water? Is there enough? How old are the pipes that it passes through? How often do they break? When were they last repaired? Can the immunosuppressed (cancer, HIV) drink water that comes out of the spigot?
    Are the natural gas pipes in good condition? Or, are they breaking down, too?
    What about the railroads? Are they not disappearing in the US? How many traffic jams and horrific accidents could be avoided if the stuff that many tractor trailers transport, were put onto trains?
    How come, despite various ‘give backs’ of airline workers (except from CEO’s, of course), more and more airlines are going bankrupt? And, are there any that still serve even ratty food?
    Twenty-four thousand people die of starvation, every day, on this planet. Is this not a good ‘economic indicator’ that something may be amiss?
    I have no enmity against rich folk. I do, however, take great umbrage at folk getting rich from looting others to death (eg. Cheney and Halliburton, Betchel…)

  13. The problem is not how much of the budget the government allocates to social services, it’s the fact that huge sums of money are wasted through bureaucratic corruption, inefficiency and waste. Blaming Bibi or Sharon misses the point.

  14. Oh, doom and gloom we can’t buy that new mercedez that everybody else has. Fact is we are in the top 15% of income levels when compared to the rest of the world. Stop whining!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.