December 15: Nest-egg caution

We all want a good return on our savings.

letters 88 (photo credit: Courtesy)
letters 88
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Nest-egg caution Sir, - Much effort and debate have justifiably been invested in the effort to give limited protection to retirement savings ("Cabinet votes to implement safety net," Online Edition, December 14). One hopes that the same amount of energy will be invested in learning why the risk factors were not seriously considered when those huge sums destined to provide retirement pensions were invested. There was a time when the rate of return on investments related to the level of investor risk and more attention was paid to the extent of the risk. Today's economic advisers seem to look only at the size of the return, without establishing the size of the risk. We all want a good return on our savings. But after the present world crisis, we will have to go back to astute economic analysis. Amid a burning desire to show good results (and earn high remuneration), serious regulation is required to minimize the danger of those who invest our hard-earned savings closing their eyes to the level of risk and safety of our capital. DAVID GOSHEN Kiryat Ono Oh, Bibi! Sir, - As a Likud member who has been duped twice, I have decided it is enough. Ariel Sharon disregarded the party's decision to not expel people from Gush Katif. Binyamin Netanyahu has decided that the list running for the Knesset should be changed. I have decided that they do not need my vote; nor will they get it ("Netanyahu to 'Post': I'm the leader, and I set policy," December 12). M. SCHAEFFER Jerusalem Sir, - Further to Binyamin Netanyahu's proclamation, I would suggest a very careful look at the man's character before voting Likud. I would ask him to explain how his methods differ from those of Ariel Sharon, who invited a party referendum on the Gush Katif expulsion and, when out-voted, ignored the result. Bibi set a date and the rules to govern the party's primaries, and when he didn't like the results, had the rules changed to suit himself. The democratic thing to do would be to either revert to the original rules as understood by Likud voters, or hold new primaries under the new rules. We do not need a leader who deals in dirty tricks. We have had enough of them in this generation. ARIEL BROCH Shadmot Mehola Sir, - Mr. Netanyahu may set his party's policies as he wishes, but by belittling the judgment and power of the all-star lineup legitimately elected by his party's members he has shot himself in the foot - or perhaps in an even more sensitive place. We were set to vote Likud for the first time in our lives, but now, in anticipation and fear of yet another government neither of the people, nor for the people, nor by the people, we will vote otherwise. PESACH AND DEBBIE ROGOWAY Petah Tikva Sir, - Is there not a parallel between Sharon's ignoring the votes of his own party regarding the uprooting of Gush Katif settlements and Bibi's ignoring Likud voters' preference for Moshe Feiglin and supporters by downgrading them in the Likud pecking order? This voter betrayal creates doubts about giving Bibi my vote. HAROLD LEWIN Jerusalem Sir, - Why should we even bother to vote next time there are internal elections? It seems our views really don't count, anyway. CHAYA GOLDBERG Hatzor Haglilit Sir, - Bibi would be well advised to fight the other parties and not act sleazily against the members of his own party. What a pity, now that the Israeli population has the opportunity to reject the anti-Jewish policies of the parties in power, they have to do so by voting for an anti-democratic Likud. IRA L. JACOBSON Petah Tikva A mite forgetful Sir, - Gil Hoffman's analysis "When too Right is not right for the Right" (December 10) read as if it could have been written by Tzipi Livni accusing the Likud of lurching to the "extreme Right" by electing a slate of nationalists and "hawks" in its primary. He ended by concluding that this would hurt the Likud's electoral chances and make it difficult for Binyamin Netanyahu to form a stable and centrist coalition. This analysis, however, suffers from a lack of short-term memory. As I recall, in the last election neither Moshe Feiglin, Danny Danon, Boaz Haetzni, Yariv Levin nor any other identifiable "right-wing extremists" were candidates on the Likud Knesset slate - and yet, with the 'centrist' Netanyahu at its head, the Likud crashed to a humiliating low of 12 mandates. Perhaps Feiglin is "right" after all in saying that the Likud will ultimately triumph by returning to its traditional Jewish values and not pandering to the liberal, left-wing, post-Zionist elites. MORRIS KARLIN Mercaz Shapira Impaired vision... Sir, - Delusion plays a big part in Jimmy Carter's attraction to terrorist organizations in the Middle East ("Carter ready to meet with Hizbullah officials," December 10). If the former US president thinks that Hamas, Hizbullah and Islamic Jihad will ever play a role in genuine peace talks with the US and Israel, he is a man thoroughly blinded to the fact that these three organizations will never recognize the State of Israel nor any political entity that is not radically Islamic. Rather, global jihad is their ubiquitous support system and modus vivendi. YOEL NITZARIM Skokie, Illinois ...or clear thinking? Sir, - As a non-apathetic American Jew who has spent 12 weeks in Israel volunteering, I think that striving for peace and a two-state solution is the only option. Talking to each other, negotiating, working together for long-term peace is crucial at this time. PAULA SILBEY Lake Hill, New York Too blunt by far Sir, - Re the front-page headline in your December 12 issue, one wonders about our reaction to a similar, prominent proclamation in a leading Damascus newspaper: "With new smart bomb, Syrian Air Force could hit Jerusalem from within Syrian airspace." ZEEV RAPHAEL Haifa No one's laughing Sir, - In dismissing evolution as a joke (UpFront Letters, December 5), your correspondent Amnon Goldberg quoted from the writings of Malcolm Muggeridge. It has to be remembered that Muggeridge was an agnostic for more than 60 years of his life, and with his acceptance of Christianity and his later embrace of Catholicism, he offered no acceptable scientific evidence to discount the theory of evolution. While long-past earth situations cannot always be proved according to acceptable scientific principles, there is a vast body of evidence pointing to life on earth millions of years ago. If Mr. Goldberg regards Muggeridge as an authority, would he also accept his belief that Jesus was the son of God? The quote from the Lubavitcher Rebbe is the standard view expressed by religious leaders and does not in any way disprove the theory of evolution, or confirm the accuracy of the religious teachings concerning the age of the earth. No scientist would accept your correspondent's claim that a vast body of solid scientific evidence supports a recent creation. MONTY M. ZION Tel Mond