May 19: Budget pains

How can a country allow prices to be posted without any intention of giving change?

Letters 370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Letters 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )
Budget pains
Sir, – Okay, the budget passed and new currency will be printed (“Finance Ministry used ‘antidemocratic’ methods in budget vote, Peretz says,” May 16).
Now we need an MK to get a law passed that either outlaws prices with one or five agorot or returns those coins into circulation.
How can a country allow prices to be posted without any intention of giving change?
LISA KLEIN Jerusalem
Sir, – Having read “Shavuot and unity” (Editorial, May 14), I think it is shameful that our government, especially its finance minister, has chosen not to take on the Israel Electric Corporation (IEC), the country’s longshoreman or the Histadrut. Why doesn’t Yair Lapid pick on people his own size? Anyone who works for the government or government-owned companies should by law never be allowed to go on strike.
Lapid has taken the easy road instead of the correct path to economic stability.
Sir, – With regard to “In wake of ‘Bed-gate,’ PM’s budget made public” (May 14), I have read about our prime minister’s taste for the good life, smoking large, expensive cigars and drinking whiskey at private meetings. We also have read about his ice cream binges, his private residence’s over-inflated expenses and how his traveling costs have gotten out of hand. At a time we’re being asked to tighten our belts, he’s loosening his.
I know he’s the prime minister of Israel, but does he need to be a prime minister in his own home? I didn’t vote for him in the last election and I won’t until he gets his act together.
Sir, – Finance Minister Yair Lapid once mentioned that he is not willing to reach the situation of Greece. He obviously thinks the best way to avoid this is by charging costs to the middle class.
Doing what other counties did in vain is probably not the best way to do so. It seems much better to attack “fiscal corruption” and improve operating efficiency.
Stubborn resistance
Sir, – In “Irish ire” (Editorial, May 16) you are obviously right when you write that Ireland wrongs Israel by singling out for boycott products that are produced in the West Bank and by encouraging other EU member states to follow suit. The trouble with this policy is that it leads the Palestinians down the road of Irish stubborn resistance.
What do the Irish have to show for 400 years of resisting British rule? Ultimately, Ireland did achieve independence, but the land was truncated as the North remains under British sovereignty.
Moreover, the Irish national identity has been decimated to a point where the national tongue is hardly spoken.
It seems to me that if Foreign Minister Eamon Gilmore would really like to help the Palestinians achieve a culturally and economically viable state, he should encourage them to negotiate with Israel and stop persisting upon every small point.
LILY POLLIACK Jerusalem Judaism and freedom
Sir, – I must say that the column by Susan Hattis Rolef (“Confronting sexual harassment,” Think About It, May 13) was very nice and sent a very good message. However, I did not agree with her saying that Judaism takes away women’s freedom and equality. Judaism helps women be more free! When women are looked at as objects, Judaism tells them to dress modestly. A body is a private thing. A women who is free should not want to show it to everyone in the street!
DANIEL COHEN Jerusalem The writer is 15 years old
Price is wrong Sir, – Gil Troy (“‘Price Tags’: Morally bankrupt, politically foolish,” Center Field, May 9) is entirely right in excoriating “price tag” criminals for their participation in a form of terrorism.
Their contemptible actions are inexcusable. However, he incorrectly refers to the literal reading of the biblical “eye for an eye” injunction as a “harsh dictum.”
At the time, it was a far-reaching step in human progress. It meant the substitution of legal punishment and the exact equivalent in payment for an injury rather than wild revenge. As a law of justice, not hatred, it was a statement of equitable relation between crime and punishment, requiring that all citizens are equal before the law, and that the injuries of all people should be valued according to the same standard.
As Troy no doubt would agree, there is simply no way that “price tag” terrorists can claim this rule as a justification for their crimes.
EFRAIM A. COHEN Zichron Ya’acov
That list
Sir, – I think I am destined, despite my best, good-faith efforts, to remain ignorant of the criteria you use to compile your list “The 50 most influential Jews” (Shavuot Supplement, May 14). Every time I think I get a handle on it I see another name on the list that undermines my short-lived euphoria.
Be that as it may, it is my considered opinion that regardless of the specific criteria, there are certain individuals who are conspicuously absent. Here is a short (and certainly not exhaustive) list of some of the names I conjured up over the holiday: Former US senator Joseph Lieberman, Malcolm Hoenlein, Abraham Foxman, David Harris, Barbra Streisand, Stanley Fischer, James Snyder, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, Rabbi Daniel Tropper and IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz.
Please notice that I did not disparage even one of your choices. That was not easy!
Sir, – By inserting Anat Hoffman in fifth place, the Post is supporting the destructive attitude of the Women of the Wall, who seem intent on distorting true Judaism and the heritage of the Jewish people.
This group of ladies does not represent anything close the true values of Judaism, which hold the remains of the Temple close to every religious person’s heart.
Pluralistic people should stay in their own pluralistic places of praying.
JOYCE KAHN Petah Tikva
Sir, – I’m a black Episcopalian from Brooklyn so maybe I don’t have my finger on the pulse of things. But I have a question.
How can your list omit Sandy Koufax?
Sir, – Any compendium of the world’s 50 most influential Jews that finds room for Scooter Braun and Ruth Westheimer, but none for Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists Bret Stephens and Thomas L. Friedman, cannot be taken seriously. You appear to have lost it.
Sir, – You list Sara Netanyahu as a most influential Jew, yet in the write-up you admit she could not influence her husband to keep out of his coalition a certain head of party. What then is her influence? Maybe having her husband refurnish a plane carrying them on a diplomatic mission?
Sir, – Any committee that chooses the “most important” people will always be criticized by at least someone for the wrong choice. Nevertheless, I was surprised not to see America’s most influential Jew.
Malcolm Hoenlein, executive director of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations for well over 25 years, meets with presidents, kings and prime ministers throughout the world on a regular basis, speaking eloquently on Israel’s behalf. I guess he’s so well known he was taken for granted.