Let's Put the Tents Back Up on Rothschild Boulevard

Maybe Israel's so-called middle class will finally learn that with Yair Lapid's budget cuts it's on the way to being the underclass.

Saja Abu Fanni
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Saja Abu Fanni

This isn't a budget, it’s a war on children. And if parents are bringing children into the world just to squeeze money out of the National Insurance Institute, as the finance minister thinks, they should be put in jail, heartless child traffickers that they are.

Yair Lapid’s cruelty toward children reflects the world of power in which he lives, a world lacking compassion and basic understanding for the simple people. If you have children you're a thief, if you file for unemployment you're a cheat, and if you seek disability benefits you're a parasite. Long live the society of the strong!

“The child comes and brings his living with him,” the Arabs say. As such, musician Shlomo Bar put the whispers of both Arabs and Jews into words when he sang that children are a joy and a blessing. I was born to a family of eight children, and my parents never made a connection between the number of children and the size of the benefit. I never heard my father tell my mother: “We’re in bad shape, let’s have another kid.”

A generation later, we boys started our own families, each with three children. Lowering child allowances won't lower birthrates, because the poorer the family is, the more children it will have. Nowadays, according to Lapid’s method, we’ve got parents who can't support their children and a state that ignores them. And if there’s no mother and father, the children will “go with the gang,” as the saying goes. Thus a generation of de facto orphans will grow up before our eyes – the shame of our future.

At the moment, with the new budget cuts, it’s so good for the rich that they don’t care about holding their earnings prisoner while they argue with the Finance Ministry over how much tax they (won’t) pay. Meanwhile, the simple worker is denied the luxury of holding on to his earnings. If he holds on to even one monthly salary he’ll starve, and even a small argument over tax rates will be considered a rebellion against the foundations of the state.

Then comes minister Lapid, who promises that good times will come in two years. But if there’s rain on the horizon, as the Arabic saying goes, at least we’d see clouds. In the meantime, the only clouds we're seeing are the budget cuts, falling on the shoulders of the weak. And the tycoons have been forced to pay only 1 percent more, a sum that barely covers the ice cream budget of one such bigwig.

So where did the Rothschild revolution disappear to? The one that rattled the country? That’s exactly what they’re asking in Egypt. Where did the Tahrir revolution disappear to? The wise say the smart plan the revolution, the brave carry it out and the opportunists take over. Thank God here we’ve got Daphni Leef, who plans and executes. In Egypt it was Wael Ghonim. Then the third stage came and put the revolution in the hands of the Brothers. In Egypt it was the Muslim Brotherhood, in Israel it was the brothers Yair Lapid and Naftali Bennett.

At the start of the revolution in Egypt the Brotherhood stood on the sidelines and even flirted with the government. Lapid didn’t bother visiting while Rothschild was abuzz. But whereas in Egypt the Brotherhood hasn’t had a moment’s rest, in Israel we’ve been blinded by Lapid’s slogans and his war against the ultra-Orthodox. Maybe now the so-called middle class will finally learn that with these budget cuts it's on the way to being the underclass, and the war against the weak will provide no respite.

We must not leave Rothschild Boulevard empty. Get the tents ready! And this time don’t forget to include the occupation and the settlements as sources of the economic problems. So let's head out to Rothschild and return the revolution to its rightful owners.

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