Wednesday, August 28, 2013
Heads of Israeli Judicial System Demand Suppression of Freedom of Speech
1. The Israeli judicial system has always been fundamentally anti-democratic. It operates at a dual level, with one set of rules for leftists and the other for everyone else. It is notoriously weak in protecting fundamental civil liberties and especially freedom of speech. The courts, including the Supreme Court, are crawling with anti-democratic "judicial activists," who adhere to the doctrine of judicial tyranny that holds that unelected judges have the right to veto the will of the democratically elected representatives of the people and that judges should be able just to make up laws and rights out of thin air as they go along.
Well, now the very top officials in the Israeli judicial system have launched an official jihad against freedom of speech. It takes the form of the attempted criminalization of media criticism of the rulings and verdicts of judges. This is not the first such attempt to suppress criticism of judges, verdicts, and rulings. The Chief Justice of the Israeli Supreme Court Asher Gronis and the non-judge administrative chief of the Israeli court system, Michael Spitzer, have submitted an official petition to Israel's Attorney General and Chief Prosecutor demanding that criticism of court rulings by people on web sites and in blogs be criminalized. The story appears in Hebrew at http://www.haaretz.co.il/news/law/.premium-1.2108173 (Haaretz English web site has not run it). Ironically, the leftist Attorney General has indicated that he is dubious about the petition because it clearly violates freedom of speech, all this from a leftist who has a very dubious record of his own when it comes to freedom of speech for non-leftists.
The two judicial honchos are upset because there is so much harsh criticism of judges on the internet. Not all of it is over the outrageous rulings by some Supreme Court judges, in fact a lot of the condemnation concerns rulings in family court and divorce court.
The two honchos claim to favor freedom of speech in general and the right to criticize harshly anyone ELSE in Israeli public life, just not judges. In a few cases, protests have been held in front of the private residences of targeted judges, and I suppose the chiefs might have a case in asking that THESE be prohibited, since they create a public nuisance. But that is a far cry from demanding that those who criticize court verdicts on the internet be indicted as criminals. The two chiefs may have adopted their initiative from Stalin's Soviet regime, which had similar criminalization measures.
And since your humble curmudgeon criticizes judges all the time, including in this special case of judicial honchos trying to criminalize the exercise of freedom of speech, if you do not hear from me now for a few years please bake me a cake with a file inside and smuggle me some cartons of smokes to use as currency.
2. Yediot reports today that many diplomats from foreign countries are complaining that their offices and residences in Tel Aviv have been burglarized in recent weeks. Thieves and burglars break in and steal valuables, cash, and computers .
So why is this such a delicious story? Because many of these diplomats who were victimized are themselves the official representatives of countries that have been pressuring Israel to allow the Eritrean infiltrators to remain in Israel rather than give them the bum's rush back to Africa. And my bet is that at least two thirds of the burglars of the diplomats are Eritrean infiltrators. So who says there is no justice in this world of sin??!!
Meanwhile the Israeli press has uncovered another amazing mailman-bites-dog story. Much of Tel Aviv these days is barely livable thanks to the countless Eritrean criminals prowling the streets (not all the Eritreans are criminals, but enough are, and on second thought actually ALL the Eritreans are criminals in the sense that they infiltrated into Israel from Egypt illegally!). SO after countless incidents where Eritreans attacked, mugged and raped Tel Aviv residents, yesterday a group of four Israeli hooligans attacked a group of Eritreans in southern Tel Aviv and stole their property. The hooligans are hardly heroes, but it does make for a refreshing change in the news coverage.
3. For weeks the caring Left has been screaming its indignity against the mayor of Upper Nazareth, because he has called for maintaining the Jewish character of Upper Nazareth, much like regular Nazareth has such a dominant Arab character. Well, now the silence of the same indignant care bears is deafening. It seems that the terrorist Hanin Zoabi will be running for mayor of regular Nazareth. This is the same Zoabi who participated in the violent assault against unarmed Israeli troops when they boarded the "Gaza Flotilla" ships. She is an open cheerleader for terrorism and seems never to have met a Jew who does not deserve to be murdered. And the caring Left is suddenly all a-silenced. In any normal country, someone like Zoabi would have been long ago tossed into solitary or sent to Gitmo.
4. The following story is so mind-bogglingly stupid that the only reason it is of interest is to show what passes for "journalism" these days at Haaretz, the Palestinian newspaper printed in Hebrew.
The headline reads: "Dozens of Police are called in against Waitresses who resisted being Ticketed." It can be read in translation here http://www.haaretz.com/news/.premium-1.543800 . The text also reports a demonstration by supposedly 200 people (numbers of demonstrators in Haaretz stories should never be taken too literally!) who protested the anti-feminist and anti-progressive attitudes of the police, who were targeting this "progressive" café. Huh??
Well the story seems to be this. There is a café called the Albi Café in Tel Aviv that serves the night crowd. (Defined as people who go out hours after I have gone to bed.) I confess that I have no idea what a progressive café is and doubt I will ever enter one.
Anyway, evidently the neighbors complained about the noise, when the café stayed open past legal opening hours. Some inspectors (not clear if they were from the City or from some sort of labor hours enforcement squad of regulators) came by one day to issue a summons about the fact that staff was being employed there beyond the legal operating hours. When they tried to deliver the summons, there were only two waitresses still in the premises cleaning up, which were locked and closed. The labor inspectors called the cops to the scene. The waitresses told the cops they were prohibited by the owners from opening the locked doors after the café was closed. The cops insisted that they open anyway and demanded that the waitresses show the cops some ID. In Israel for obvious reasons cops have the right to demand to see some ID. They refused and were detained by the cops. SO far, not much of a story.
But some far-leftist radical feminist organization, "Women in Yellow," decided to adopt the "cause." Its radical feminist lawyer named Gaby Laski started issuing pronouncements about how this was all part of a vast conspiracy to undermine feminism! (Huh?) A sort of Israeli Andrea Dworkin, Lasky is an activist in Peace Now and in some other loopy leftist groups even worse than it (see http://www.inclusivesecurity.org/network-bio/gaby-lasky/ ). She once ran on the Meretz slate. She works with B'Tselem.
Lasky and her ilk seem to be those behind the "feminist progressive" demonstration to defend the waitresses against police demands that they show some ID. And Haaretz faithfully toes the line of the moonbettes and reports the entire story as if it is a political scoop rather than a trivial story about a noise nuisance after hours in Tel Aviv and about some bored limousine feminists. Lasky and friends did NOT protest when the police recently tasered a rightwing settler who was peaceful and minding his own business. Haaretz did protest, not because it cares about rightwingers getting tasered but because it fears communists and other leftists might be next.
By the way, if you think B'Tselem is something other than an anti-Semitic terrorist organization, take a look at this:
5. University of Haifa professor composes anti-Semitic blood libel "cartoon": http://isracampus.org.il/third%20level%20pages/HaifaU%20-%20Micah%20Leshem%20-%20Pens%20Anti-Semitic%20Cartoon.htm