Sir, – Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz has aroused the ire of manufacturers by
suggesting that they be exposed to competition by allowing imports (“Steinitz
may remove import barriers for dairy products,” June 20).
Manufacturers Association president, Shraga Brosh, objects. Not, of course,
because this might cut into the bloated profits of the cheese companies, which,
coincidentally, all charge the same price. Not at all; he is concerned that this
could result in unemployment for their hardworking employees. I am
impressed by his altruism.
If only all our executives were so concerned
about the well-being of the country instead of merely worrying about themselves!
Now that Brosh has assured us of the fine moral standards of our oligopolists,
we can relax the boycott, forget about nasty ideas like competition, and go back
to business as usual. As for Steinitz, I'm sure that enough money placed in the
right hands will ensure that his political career can be cut
Sir, – Add another element to the
cottage cheese discussion: half-liter and one-liter sizes.
containers enable lower unit costs, less packaging waste and serving-size
Sir, – Recently, the price to the
consumer of a one-liter bag of 3 percent Tnuva milk increased by 5%, from NIS
4.75 to NIS 5.00. I trust the herd owner received a proportionate increase on
his “target price” of NIS 2.1491 per liter.
Your correspondents cite examples of outrageous price differentials of
Israeli-produced goods that are available abroad at considerably lower prices
despite the carriage charges.
Some years ago I received a call from a
regular client who informed me that he was in a high-end ceramics shop in
Amsterdam that was selling Victorian reproduction tiles identical to what I was
selling in London, but at a third less. I telephoned the sales director of the
tile company and asked whether the other shop was selling second-quality
He reassured me that they were indeed first-quality
When asked why the domestic prices he was charging were obviously
double those he charged for exports, he replied with a chuckle, “Because we
Sir, – I would like to
extend a huge yasher koach (well done) to actor Kevin McKidd and the other
visiting US actors participating in the America’s Voices in Israel trip (“Cast
members from 3 US TV series wrap up tour of ‘so much history,’” June
These brave souls said no to stereotyping and to what I am sure is
ongoing pressure to boycott Israel in every way by a very active anti-Israel
Left in the US and all over the world.
We should thank them for their
lack of prejudice against Israel and for getting to know us, and ask them not
only to take home their true impressions of our beloved holy land, but to send
us their friends – and even our foes – so they may see for themselves what
Israel and Israelis are really made of.
Sir, – The article “Jesus for Jews” (Comment & Features, June 20)
comes very close to being a plea for Jews for Jesus.
Don't get me wrong.
I appreciate the support for Israel by evangelicals and I am all for
Jewish-Christian friendship. But if the price is a Jewish acceptance of Jesus as
a prophet, failed messiah or tzaddik, as the article suggests, it is not one I
am prepared to pay.
Sir, – When discussing
dialogue between Christians and Jews, it is imperative to point out that this is
profoundly different from an attempt to establish congruity between Judaism and
Christianity. The first is involved with the relationship between people of
different faiths and is highly desirable, while the second seeks to explore
areas of theological commonality and will ultimately end in obfuscation and
perhaps ill will.
Considering that Jews until most recently were accused
of the virulent crime of deicide, tortuous attempts to squeeze Jesus into Jewish
theology are at best rather amusing.
There are indeed many candidates of
Jewish origin who have caused paradigm changes in world thought and behavior and
would legitimately fit the category of “failed messiah,” such as Karl Marx,
Sigmund Freud, Albert Einstein and the not-so-failed Lubavitcher
Sir, – Thomas Friedman never
fails to make a suggestion for the Middle East that will definitely
In his June 20 “What to do with lemons” (Comment & Features),
he suggests that we update UN Resolution 181, which was the partition plan of
November 29, 1947. The only problem is that the Arab/Muslim world never accepted
that plan because it included a Jewish state.
The fact that the Arab
world never even thought of creating a Palestinian Arab state seems never to
have occurred to Friedman. He also forgets to mention that the Arabs rejected
the Peel Plan of 1938, the Barak Plan of 2000 and the Olmert Plan of
The lemonade doesn’t look that tempting after all.
Simple phone call
Sir, – Yesterday I had to go to Hadassah
Ein Kerem for a medical procedure – which I was fortunate enough to receive, as
the doctors in that particular department were working.
While waiting, I
could not help but notice the many clerks sitting around with nothing to
I got into a conversation with a severely disabled lady in a
wheelchair who was obviously very distressed. She had traveled some distance and
with great difficulty to an outpatient clinic that was closed due to the
I am fully in sympathy with the reasons for the strike but am
wondering why it would not have been too much trouble for one of the many idle
clerical staff to have phoned this unfortunate lady to inform her of the
cancelation, in the same way I was phoned to tell me that I should come for my
Enforcement the key
Sir, – I am
encouraged by recent legislation introduced in or passed by the Knesset to
restrict smoking and sales of cigarettes (“Cigarette vending machines to be
banned starting in 2014,” May 31). These efforts will improve the health of all
of us, both smokers and non-smokers.
Meanwhile, greater enforcement of
existing regulations is needed. At the Jerusalem Central Bus Station, prominent
nosmoking signs are posted in the area where passengers board buses, but they
are ignored. At the Ramat Gan stadium during the Bob Dylan concert, the monitors
flashed announcements that smoking was prohibited.
These admonitions were
ignored by patrons and guards alike. (If the guards and ushers were as zealous
about enforcing this healthy initiative as they were about the prohibition on
bringing bottles into the stadium, the evening would have been more pleasant.)
Laws are already on the books to forbid sales of cigarettes to minors.
Inspectors should draft undercover teenagers to attempt to buy cigarettes from
these machines and, if they are successful, the courts should confiscate them
for having been used to violate the law.
Similarly, existing laws can be
invoked to cite those who throw cigarette butts on the ground for
The authorities can improve our health and reduce litter by
enforcing laws already on the books.