Thursday, March 26, 2015


Excerpt from a longer piece:

Kahlon’s dangerous mix of Netanyahu and Begin

The man who slashed Israeli mobile bills has been tapped to be Israel's next finance minister. But Moshe Kahlon's next reforms are going to be a lot harder, and won't be helped by his legacy of Beginomics and Bibi politics.

By David Rosenberg | Mar. 25, 2015

...Kahlon is a proud Likudnik, but that’s his biggest problem of all. His Likud is not Netanyahu’s free-market, tycoon-fawning, fiscally restrained Likud, but the old Likud of Menachem Begin that likes capitalism and big government in equal doses.

Recall, it was Begin who invited the godfather of free market economics to advise him on policy after the party took power in 1977. But as one observer said at the time Begin followed through on only half of the advice, taking the Milton without the Friedman.

Begin liked the idea of destroying Israel’s socialist establishment, but he couldn’t let go of the idea of populist economics that increased social welfare spending and the birth of the Haredi schnorrer economy, massive deficits, hyperinflation and serial devaluations.

Worse still, on security issues, Kahlon is a Likudnik in the Netanyahu mold -- one that favors negotiations toward a Palestinian state sometime in the distant future when a more amenable Palestinian leadership in in place, the threat of Islamic extremism has passed, and pigs fly. In the meantime Israel will keep expanding settlements, ensuring there will be nothing to negotiate over when the time comes.

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