Trajtenberg recommendations receive angry responses

Kadima, advisory c'tee, social justice forum lash back at suggestions released, brand them as "trickery," "wretched," "mockery."

By JPOST.COM STAFF
September 15, 2011 11:48
2 minute read.
Prof. Manuel Trajtenberg

Prof. Manuel Trajtenberg. (photo credit: Mark Neiman / GPO)

 
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Heated statements were released by Kadima, the Social Justice Forum and the advisory committee to social organizations, following recommendations made Wednesday by the Trajenberg Committee, appointed by the government last month to examine ways to implement socioeconomic change.

Trajtenberg solutions are "trickery, and spit in the faces of millions of Israelis," the Kadima spokesperson said in a statement released Thursday morning.

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He added that "the positive response to needs in the education system does not hide the enormous vacuum regarding housing, transportation and the weight of taxation on the middle class.. but reinforces the warped priorities of the Netanyahu government, who brought the crowds into the streets"

The Social Justice Forum released a statement Thursday saying that the recommendations, "do not constitute progress in the creation of a more just society or a state that cares for its citizens. the Forum for Social Justice emphasizes again, that with no significant budget increase there will not be any real change."

They stated that the Trajenberg Committee had now proved the claims made by the social justice movement all along with their "wretched suggestions, unwillingness to invest money back into citizens of the state, cosmetic treatment of the housing problem and complete avoidance of the weaker population ... Trachtenberg does not constitute a mandate for social change. It seems as though the committee's role was simply a publicity stunt."

The head of the advisory team to social organizations expressed similar views, saying that the suggestions only partially meet demands of the social protest movement.

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"The committee talks about the addition of NIS 4 billion to finance the protesters' demands. We're talking about NIS 20 billion," said Professor Avia Spivak, former deputy governor of the Bank of Israel in an interview with Army Radio Thursday morning.

Channel 2 reported Wednesday that the committee will suggest that NIS 1 to 3 billion be cut from the Defense Ministry’s budget next year, in order to provide part of the funds needed for a more socially-oriented financial plan.

Additionally, the committee will reportedly recommend increased oversight and transparency on defense-related spending.

In changes to the education system,  the committee will allegedly propose gradually-implemented free education from age three, a longer school day and funding for increased supervision and regulations on day care institutions.

In the field of taxation, the committee will advise the government to grant fathers of young children benefits only presently given to mothers, as well as higher taxation on the stock market for the wealthy.

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