Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Pedro vs. Little Bo Peep

1. I confess that it is a rare day when I actually enjoy something
that appears in Haaretz. And an even more rare day when Haaretz
exhibits something witty.

But the political editorial cartoon that appeared yesterday was
delightful and almost would have been enough reason to buy yesterday's

The cartoon concerned the Labor Party primaries, which were held
yesterday. There are four leftist contenders for the position of
party Commissar, all of them basically claiming to promote the exact
same agenda, all of them claiming to be anti-capitalist "social
democrats." These are Amram Mitzna, the ex-Mayor of Haifa, once
described by me as the most dangerous politician in Israel (see
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/735860/posts ), Isaac "Buji"
Herzog, a New Israel Fund poodle (many Israeli politicians have
infantile nicknames like him – if you still want to go into politics,
I understand that the nickname "Goo goo goo" is still unclaimed),
Shelly Yachimovich and Amir Peretz.

Shelly is the leading girlish cheerleader for socialism in Israel.
She used to be a TV talking head before she decided to sit on her
tuffet. She is not particularly bright, but, unlike the other three,
she is basically clean and honest. She used to be the favorite of the
tent protest crowd, who would follow her home wagging their tails
behind them. But then she managed to antagonize Israel's totalitarian
Left when she suggested that good socialists should NOT treat or
consider Jewish settlers to be the enemy. That led to nonstop attacks
against her in Haaretz.

That leaves Amir Peretz, a subliterate who made his career as a sort
of Israeli Jimmy Hoffa, running the Histadrut Trade Union federation
(or what I call the Histadrut organized crime family) for a while.
Peretz bears a remarkable resemblance to a Mexican gardener I once
employed in California. I would be very surprised to hear that he
has ever read a book. I met him once in the Knesset where I testified
about the proposed (back then) national health insurance law. He did
not understand a word I said and stared with glassy eyes, and it was
NOT because of my accent.

As you can see, this is a great bunch of losers. In the primaries,
Little Shelly and Pedro Peretz came out as the winners, but neither
with enough votes to take the party chiefdom in the first round (and
now will have a second round run-off).

I personally prefer that Peretz win, because he is such a loser that
his leadership of the Labor Party will finish it off altogether. He
is much easier to beat than any of the other three. I suspect though
that Little Bo Peep, er, I mean Shelly, will take it.

Oh, about that cartoon I mentioned. It shows the four main characters
from the Wizard of Oz skipping along. Shelly of course is Dorothy.
The cowardly lion is Peretz. The tin man is Mitzna, and the scarecrow
is Herzog. It was delicious!

2. Noam Chomsky proclaims the Prophet Elijah as the "First Anti-American"


Using Privilege to Challenge the State

By Noam Chomsky

Source: Boston Review

Excerpt: In the Hebrew scriptures there are figures who by
contemporary standards are dissident intellectuals, called "prophets"
in the English translation. They bitterly angered the establishment
with their critical geopolitical analysis, their condemnation of the
crimes of the powerful, their calls for justice and concern for the
poor and suffering. King Ahab, the most evil of the kings, denounced
the Prophet Elijah as a hater of Israel, the first "self-hating Jew"
or "anti-American" in the modern counterparts. The prophets were
treated harshly, unlike the flatterers at the court, who were later
condemned as false prophets. The pattern is understandable. It would
be surprising if it were otherwise.

(I happen to regard the mount on which Balaam was riding to be the
oldest Chomskyite)

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