Putting the Money Where His Mouth Is

After about five weeks of yada-yada-yada, the inevitable happened – Yair Lapid compromised on most of what he had requested, and a new Israeli government is about to be officially started.

The man with the big mouth, who arrogantly claimed that he was going to usher in a new era of politics, did what all politicians must do – he had to compromise. I have nothing against compromise, I think it is a positive aspect of working with people with different views. This is why I bristled every time I heard Lapid open his mouth and make claims that he was somehow going to be above “politics as usual”.

Lapid compromised on the following: There will be 25 ministers instead of the 18 he had requested (with a law being put into affect that the NEXT government has to have no more than 18 – how lame is that?). The induction age of religious men will be 22 and not 18 as he had wanted – which means that those who want to learn for a while before doing army service will be able to. The numbers of complete military exemptions will rise from his request of 400 to 2000.

In addition Lapid will be taking the Finance Ministry, probably the least popular ministry of them all – which to me is exquisitely ironic. No matter how he tries – someone will be disappointed in him, because he won’t be able to give out financial goodies to everyone. He will now actually have to balance a budget. In other words, actually take responsibility, instead of playing “armchair politician”. It will be even worse for him than anyone else in the new government, precisely because he promised to be so “different”. A lot of people are going to be angry at him, since he raised their expectations so high. I can’t wait until I hear him sputter, “but you have to be realistic…..”

I am happy about the other ministries also. Moshe Yaalon will finally be defense minister – something that in my opinion should have happened four years ago. Bennet as Labor and Trade minister sounds like a good fit. Education is still up for grabs – but the two likely candidates are both good (either Gidon Saar of Likud or Rav Shai Peron of Yesh Atid).

I was hoping that Tzipi Hotobeli would receive something – but it looks unlikely at this point.


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