The real threat to democracy

Why bother electing governments if unelected legal officials can bar them from setting policy?

August 12, 2013 16:25
Port workers protest gov't plans for new ports outside National Labor Court in J'lem, July 28, 2013.

Port workers demonstration 370. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)


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After years of dismissing leftists’ hyperbolic claims that Israeli democracy is under threat, I’ve decided they may be right after all. What they’re wrong about is the source of the threat. It isn’t our “anti-democratic” elected representatives (whose “anti-democratic” bills usually aren’t anything of the sort, while the few that are routinely fail); rather, it’s our unelected legal establishment.

After all, citizens elect governments primarily to implement specified policies. Thus if unelected legal officials routinely prevent governments from doing so, even on the most important issues of the day, what’s the point of having elections? And as two incidents of the past two weeks make clear, that’s increasingly becoming the case.


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