Here’s the original:
Here’s Conan’s remake:
Here’s the original:
Here’s Conan’s remake:
Featured on Israelmatzav:
Moshe Feiglin runs again – this time he could actually win
Guest Post by Rafi Farber
Late Sunday night, Netanyahu announced that, along with internal elections to choose a new Likud Central Committee and local representatives, the chairmanship of the party itself would be up for grabs. Moshe Feiglin answered the challenge immediately and announced his candidacy. Bibi v Feiglin round IV is now set for January 31, 2012.
All the political pundits in Israel immediately started asking why Netanyahu was doing this. Army radio, Galei Tzahal as they call it here, was abuzz with speculation. Political commentators shot off a bunch of sophisticated columns in all the newspapers explaining that Netanyahu is doing this to “take advantage of his popularity”. I will tell you now that this is false, and I will explain exactly why.
Back in April 2010, the Likud, for the first time in 10 years, was about to have elections to choose a new Likud Central Committee. Netanyahu fought really hard to postpone them because he knew at the time that if they happened back then, he would lose control of the LCC to the right wing of his party who reject him. Eventually the case got to the Supreme Court, those “guard dogs of democracy” as they call themselves, who allowed him to push off democratic elections. In the meantime, Netanyahu’s goal was to strengthen his base in the party by signing up a bunch of people who would vote for him in the next primary.
During that time, there has a been a deluge of even more new Likud members to the right of Bibi, voters that don’t exactly like his whole “building freeze” and uprooting and expulsion of Jewish towns like Migron and Havat Gilad these past few months, not to mention his handing over Hebron to the Arabs and signing the defunct Wye Accords.
And who was Bibi able to sign up to his side during this time? Pretty much nobody.
When Feiglin first for ran for Likud Chairman in 2003, he got 3% of the vote. When he ran again in 2005, he placed 3rd at 13% of the vote, more than quadrupling his previous support. When he ran again in 2007, he doubled again and got 24% of the vote. And that was back before all these new people signed up to the party.
Bibi is not doing this because he’s trying to “take advantage of his popularity”. Within the Likud party membership, he has very little. What he’s actually doing is preparing the ground to jump ship.
He knows he doesn’t have the numbers for the overwhelming victory he desperately needs to secure his place at the head of Likud. He knows we’re too strong by now. He knows that Feiglin will get at least 30-35% of the Likud vote, and that’s being conservative. If Feiglin scores that low in this next election, it will still be a high enough percentage for Bibi to say, “Well, these Feiglinites are too strong. We have to get out of here and form a new Kadima II with Ehud Barak.”
This is not just speculation. The cover story of Monday’s Israel HaYom newspaper daily was, “Netanyahu: I did not guarantee refuge for Barak.”
They know it’s in the back of his mind.
If Feiglin scores any higher than 30-35%, and he likely will, Netanyahu will run out of Likud as fast as possible. What will happen then? I guess we’ll all find out, but the party will be left to Feiglin.
The other possibility is that Feiglin outright wins the election. Any of these three possibilities spell the same conclusion. Netanyahu is on his way out of the party. That’s why he’s doing this now. He needs a new party with Barak to continue his plans to break left.
This is the clearest portrayal of Ron Paul’s views on Israel I’ve ever seen.
Ron Paul Tells Newsmax: I Support Israel
In an exclusive Newsmax interview, Congressman and Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul confirmed his support for Israel, but cautioned that while the United States should be a “friend” of the Jewish state, America should not be the “master” of Israel.
Paul also says the United States should not dictate Israel’s borders or try to “buy her allegiance” with massive amounts of foreign aid. He argued that foreign aid has actually hurt – not helped – the Jewish state.
The interview was conducted by Newsmax contributor Doug Wead, a presidential historian and New York Times best-selling author.
Paul has recently come under fire from some Jewish groups in America. The Republican Jewish Coalition banned Paul from a debate on Jewish issues in Washington this week because of his “misguided and extreme views,” according to the group’s executive director, Matt Brooks.
Newsmax chatted with Paul to get his side of the issue as the Texas Republican is surging in some presidential polls.
A new Washington Post-ABC News survey in Iowa shows him threatening Mitt Romney as the second-leading candidate behind Newt Gingrich. Paul is now tied with Romney in the early caucus state with 18 percent of the vote, behind Gingrich’s 33 percent.
Rep. Paul’s interview with Newsmax follows:
Newsmax: What should our relationship be with Israel?
Ron Paul: We should be their friend and their trading partner. They are a democracy and we share many values with them. But we should not be their master. We should not dictate where their borders will be nor should we have veto power over their foreign policy.
This is not just about Israel, by the way, this is about how we should conduct ourselves with other countries around the world.
Newsmax: But Israel is not like other countries. We have a large Jewish population in America. What do you say to those who criticize your policy toward Israel?
Ron Paul: I think that some not only misunderstand the American Constitution and the role we should have in the world, they also misunderstand Zionism. Part of the original idea of Zionism, as I understand it, was that there should be Jewish independence and Jewish self-reliance. Today, America doesn’t want anyone to be self-reliant. We want to rule the world and be the saviors of the world and we are going broke in the process.
Newsmax: Some object to your policy of cutting foreign aid to Israel.
Ron Paul: I have objected to all foreign aid. I define foreign aid as taking money from poor people in rich countries and giving it to rich people in poor countries. We just can’t keep doing this. We don’t have the money anymore.
Stop and consider America’s policy: We give $3 billion a year to Israel in loans; and we give $12 billion or more in assistance to Israel’s self-declared enemies. Some of these are countries that say they will drive Israel into the sea.
Newsmax: What do you say to evangelical Christians who want that aid to continue?
Ron Paul: I say to them that our aid in the region is out of balance and it is wrong. Foreign aid does not help Israel. It is a net disadvantage. I say to them that “the borrower is servant to the lender” and America should never be the master of Israel and its fate. We should be her friend.
In October, 1981, most of the world and most of the Congress voiced outrage over Israel’s attack on Iraq and their nuclear development. I was one of the few who defended her right to make her own decisions on foreign policy and to act in her own self-interest.
Newsmax: What then, if anything, should we do for Israel?
Ron Paul: We should share intelligence for mutually agreed-upon goals. We should honor our pledge to refuse any arms sales that would undermine Israel’s qualitative military edge in the region.
But we should stop interfering with them. We should not announce bargaining positions even before she begins her negotiations. We should not dictate what she can and cannot do. We should stop trying to buy her allegiance. And Israel should stop sacrificing their sovereignty as an independent state to us or anybody else, no matter how well-intentioned.
I was hitching a ride to work today as I often do, and army radio was playing. They were talking about the upcoming Likud primaries and why Netanyahu put the Likud chairmanship up for grabs. One of the talking heads said something like this:
“Likud is very unlike the other parties because in Likud you generally do not run against a popular party leader. In Likud, it’s better to be on the leader’s side than against him.”
I was in the back seat, smiling wryly at the cute, clueless little pundits. “Tell that to Feiglin,” I murmured in the backseat, in Hebrew, hoping the driver would hear me and take the bait.
He didn’t even have to. Five seconds later, Moshe was already on the air, talking to the cute, clueless little pundits. “Hello Mr. Feiglin,” the pundit began.
“Hello hello,” Moshe responded, as always. And then, the predictable, ever-repeated, boring clueless-little-pundit question:
“Why are you running, Mr. Feiglin? You have no chance of winning.”
At this point, my wry little smile widened to an all out grin. I love this stuff!
When Moshe’s time was up, my ride starting talking. “Feiglin failed. He’s been failing for over 10 years. He won’t win,” he said. I became annoyed…for about 3 seconds. But then I asked him the following question:
“Are you a Likud member?”
“No, of course not,” he said.
“Well,” I said, “Then what does your opinion matter? You can’t even vote in this election.”
That’s when I realized, all the naysayers, all the people that keep saying over and over and over again that Jewish leadership is impossible, that Israel is condemned to be the world’s doormat forever, they are all out of this game. They don’t matter, because they’ve willingly silenced themselves by refusing to play. They never joined Likud, and are therefore irrelevant. The only people that matter are the Likud members, and those are the ones who DO believe, which is why they joined the game in the first place. This is why we will win. Everyone and everything else that says we can’t, the cute little clueless radio pundits and the nice driver guy, are just background noise who have no vote.
The most difficult dialectic in Judaism, I believe, is that between the inexorability of redemption and the Divine command to redeem ourselves. Why should we do anything if redemption is inevitable anyway? The answer is that it is not inevitable that the redemption of the Jewish people will just happen out of thin air. Rather, it is inevitable that the Jewish people will, as a nation, answer that Divine command and redeem themselves.
Over the next month and a half, Moshe Feiglin and the rest of us who believe in a real Jewish State, in our Jewish identities, and in the Jewish People’s destiny to repair the world under God, will have the wonderful opportunity to once again speak to this Nation. To explain to her that we are sick and tired of measuring the “strength” of our leadership by the amount of time it takes them to put out a diplomatic fire, or by how quickly they can appease Turkey before we lose another “ally,” or by how quickly he can scrounge up UN votes to scuttle yet another meaningless international condemnation and score another “victory” for the “proud” Jews.
To tell this People that we believe in them, we believe in our nation, we believe in ourselves and our duty to live in the land that God gave us, our right and duty to worship freely on our Holy Temple Mount, our Divine charge to speak to the Western civilization we, as Jews, gave birth to. A world now mired in profound economic and spiritual confusion, a world we must equip with spiritual and moral guidance where it is so sorely needed.
It will be a fun, exciting, therapeutic, even cathartic battle for both sides. We need to be calm and understand that nobody in the nationalist camp actually disagrees with us. Some simply don’t believe a destiny-driven Jewish existence is possible.
We will tell them, once again, that it is. And not only that, but that it is inevitable. Not that it will just happen randomly when the Divine egg-timer in the sky happens to go *bing*, but that it is inevitable that we will rise up as a nation and redeem ourselves, and God will be there with us when we do.
The only question is, are you, as a human being with free will, going to be part of it? Our numbers have gone way up since the last time Moshe ran in 2007, and all the naysayers can’t even vote. Don’t be distracted by the naysayers. They are just that: they have no say. They’re not in the game.
But you do have a say. If you want it. Go to Jewishisrael.org now and donate. Help us wake this People up and let’s show the world what the Jewish People can do!
It truly saddens me that people are seriously considering this man for President. But it doesn’t surprise me. I wrote in a previous post that I thought the next front runner would be Gingrich. In terms of simply being human, Ron Paul is much better at being a person than Newt Gingrich is.
The two people I genuinely respect in this race are Ron Paul and Rick Santorum. I disagree with Santorum on individual liberty and foreign policy, but he seems to be a genuinely good guy. The rest I don’t even respect. Bachmann I sort of like, but there’s something about her that I just don’t trust.
If it were just Ron Paul and Rick Santorum in a debate, you could have a real debate between a real Neocon and a real Libertarian and learn the difference between the two. Mitt Romney won’t give you anything because he never talks about anything. Newt Gingrich will just make you feel stupid. Rick Perry will make you feel that he’s stupid. Michele Bachmann will make you feel like someone’s scratching a chalkboard. Herman Cain will make you laugh, though he dropped out over Shabbos I heard. Jon Huntsman will dazzle you with his looks and amazing hair, but hey, he’s Jon Huntsman and nobody cares about him.
But Newt Gingrich, ewww. America’s on the verge of a monumental collapse and Newt is the best thing people can think of? That’s just gross. Cheat on your wife, take money from Freddie Mac, have government force people to buy health insurance, fight a bunch of wars (or don’t depending on when you ask him)…support the fairness doctrine…my head is in my hands.
I’m reminded of something Worf, the klingon from Star Trek: The Next Generation said about the Borg on the episode “Best of Both Worlds”.
Worf to Capt. Picard: The Borg have no courage nor honor. That may be our biggest advantage.
Capt. Picard to Worf: Let’s hope it’s enough.
So I’ll say this. Newt Gingrich has no courage nor honor. He has only hubris. That may be Paul’s biggest advantage. Let’s hope it’s enough.
Continuing the stream of consciousness, Ron Paul said something very funny on an interview with Wolf Blitzer yesterday. Wolf asked him how he would “pay” for the extension of the payroll tax cut. That question means, “how would you take money away from people in order to give money to the same people?”
Paul answered that he wouldn’t “pay” for it. He’d just cut spending and pull 15,000 people out of the embassy in Baghdad. 15,000 in an embassy in Baghdad.
What the HELL are 15,000 bureaucrats doing in Baghdad? Picking their toes? WHAT? With what money are they being paid?
Seems like a damn good way to “pay” for a tax cut. Get the HELL out of Baghdad.
Reminds me of something John McCain said to Paul in an 08 debate.
McCain to Paul: I was just in Baghdad and the troops there told me “let us win!”
Paul answered that the troops give him more money than any other candidate combined. What he should have said was this:
Paul to McCain: Let us win? Let us win WHAT? What are we DOING over there?! What the hell are we supposed to win?!
If people realize this in time, Paul can win. If not, America as we know it will no longer exist. It will be bankrupt in a matter of months.
Here’s the difference between Keynesian economics and Austrian economics illustrated by example. Austrian economics believes mistakes (money put in the wrong place, aka “malinvestment) have to be paid for by loss of that money. Government, or man, cannot stop the loss of money by mistakes being made. For Austrians, money is real, like gold or silver. Paper money is only representative of gold or silver that exists somewhere, and therefore cannot be wasted on buying mistakes.
Keynesian economics believes that mistakes (money put in the wrong place or “malinvestment”) can be bought by government so no one loses money. Money is created by government by the word of government and paper money represents nothing. Government, therefore, can fix any mistake at any price, and man becomes God of the economy.
Let’s do a case study. Let’s say you need $10. So you sell a piece of paper, a bond, a contract, for $10 to someone that says you owe him $11 one year from now. You now have a $1 deficit and he has $11 in the form of a piece of paper, or a bond, that says you owe him $11 in a year. Let’s say you take his $10, invest it in a business in the private sector that produces, I don’t know, a revolutionary kind of cheese. The business succeeds and gives you back $12 from your original $10, selling the cheese for $15. Then you take that money the cheese company gave you, give $11 of it back to the guy you owe $11 to, and you’re up $1, he’s up $1, the cheese company is up $3, and the cheese people can make their cheese thanks to your $10 investment. Everyone wins. The new money is printed up for the Keynesian, the gold or silver is taken out of reserve for the Austrian. In such a case, the Keynesian is actually better off, because he doesn’t have to find actual gold to back up the new dollars created by the good investment in cheese. If every investment worked out, Keynesian economics would be a great system. Unfortunately, reality does not work this way.
Now, let us suppose that you borrow $10 from a guy who is expecting $11 back in the same way. You take that $10 and hire (purchase) a guy who sits at a government desk filling out unnecessary forms. This is called a “government job” in the “public sector”. He produces no wealth, no cheese he can sell for more money, and just eats up your $10. Now you still owe $11 to the bondholder, but you have nothing. Keynes says, “Print up $12!” So you print it, give $11 to the bondholder, and pocket $1. Well, it looks like everyone wins, but nothing was actually created, so it now takes more money to buy the things that the bondholder was going to buy with his $11 because there are less things of value in the world and more “money” to buy those less things with. He now really only has $9.
The Austrian, in such a case, says that the bondholder should lose his $10 instead of be paid $11 in money off the presses. This keeps the money supply constant, and it requires people to pay for their mistakes and try not to repeat them again.
Man is not an economic god. Since there are mistakes made in this world, those mistakes must be paid for, whether in inflation or loss of investment. Keynes runs to the presses at this point, so all the mistakes made in the world are paid for by ordinary people whose money is affected when the government prints money to paper over mistakes.
If Austrian economics ran the world, the people who made the mistakes would take all the losses, and the people who saved money would be unaffected.
Once government pays for all mistakes, or “bails you out” then people become more encouraged to continue making mistakes. The more mistakes made, the less value there is on the planet, and the more poor people there are. Keynes just spreads the pain around to everyone, 99% of whom do not deserve the pain because they didn’t make the mistake.
Austrian economics clears debt whenever it cannot be paid and takes small losses as they come. Those who made the mistakes are wiped out and must start over, and the rest of society keeps building and creating wealth.
Keynes covers up all mistakes by printing the money to make it look like the mistake doesn’t matter. Keynes hopes to pay for the mistakes through “growth” meaning Keynesians hope that at some point, people will make much less mistakes and eventually pay for the mistakes made in the past by making really good investments in the future. But train people to rely on government to print money in response to mistakes, and they won’t ever make good decisions to pay for past mistakes. So debt goes up and up and up and governments need more and more and more money to cover up the mistakes until at some point, money itself is not trusted as a medium of exchange.
At some point along the way, the big piling mistake that the Keynesians keep piling and piling overflows, and all the pain stored up in that giant pile (aka a “keynesian bubble”) is released in one big wave leading to absolute disaster.
We just saw a bout of “global easing” by central banks (read: money printers) around the world. That means they’re printing more money to paper over the mistakes. The markets skyrocketed because now there’s more money to put into the system. But that money represents no new created wealth at all. It’s just existing wealth more diluted.
At a certain dilution, it just loses all meaning. And that’s when the crash happens. No one knows what dilution is the tipping point. But it’s getting closer, fast.