babble home
rabble.ca - news for the rest of us
today's active topics


  
FAQ | Forum Home
  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» babble   » archived babble   » the middle east and central asia   » Homeless in the Homeland

Email this thread to someone!    
Author Topic: Homeless in the Homeland
majorvictory
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2878

posted 23 July 2003 09:19 AM      Profile for majorvictory     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Milk and Honey Runs Dry for Israel's Jewish Poor

quote:
n one of the stores lining Tel Aviv's Downtown Square, a pair of Miu Miu pumps adorned with raspberry and pink paillettes are half off at 900 New Israeli Shekels (about $215). Kikar Hamedina, as the "square" is called in Hebrew, is actually a circle, the largest, most elegant roundabout in the city. It's ringed with designer boutiques both foreign and Israeli—Gucci, Gaultier, Helmut Lang—and coffee bars peddling $5 iced cappuccinos; the center is adorned with flowering shrubs and a large fountain. And a shantytown.

About 50 men, women, and children with nowhere else to go live in the Kikar Hamedina, which they have renamed with a large banner "Kikar Halechem," or Bread Square. They have been here almost a year. In July, a municipal court temporarily blocked the city from evicting them, but a Supreme Court ruling expected as early as this week could give police the power to clear them out.

For now, their settlement consists of some camper buses; an outdoor kitchen, under a tarp and powered by a gasoline generator; several tents in various stages of repair; and some tables and chairs set in the shade. Life-size effigies hang from the trees, bearing the legends in Hebrew "Died of Hunger," "Died of Humiliation," and "Avtelei" (a play on words meaning both "unemployment" and "father-hanging"). Tel Aviv residents walk their dogs and shop for camisoles not 50 feet away, scarcely glancing at the Kikar Halechem or its inhabitants.



From: Toronto | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged
lagatta
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2534

posted 23 July 2003 09:49 AM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
There is a lot about these Israeli social movements in Haaretz. Perhaps more important still in terms of its impact has been the march of single mothers movement. Many female heads of families have been left in poverty due to cuts in child benefit and a failure to go after delinquent fathers, or the poverty of the separated fathers themselves.

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShArt.jhtml?itemNo=319353&sw=single+mothers


From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
DrConway
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 490

posted 24 July 2003 12:30 AM      Profile for DrConway     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
As I recall the budget brought down last year in Israel for this fiscal year made some pretty nasty cutbacks in social assistance spending, and in fact the current Israeli quarterly accounts show that they're coming in under budget in terms of social spending which is just un-freakin-believable given that the Israeli economy isn't perking along by any means whatsoever.
From: You shall not side with the great against the powerless. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Mishei
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2785

posted 24 July 2003 08:05 AM      Profile for Mishei     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by DrConway:
As I recall the budget brought down last year in Israel for this fiscal year made some pretty nasty cutbacks in social assistance spending, and in fact the current Israeli quarterly accounts show that they're coming in under budget in terms of social spending which is just un-freakin-believable given that the Israeli economy isn't perking along by any means whatsoever.
Hmmm and what of the budgets elsewhere in the region ....say Egypt, Syria or Iran?

From: Toronto | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
Moderator
Babbler # 560

posted 24 July 2003 08:41 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
You're welcome to start a new thread on that if you'd like, Mishei.
From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
lagatta
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2534

posted 24 July 2003 08:44 AM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Egypt really isn't at all comparable in terms of development and status of living. As for Syria and Iran (pretty far from Israel...) I think most babblers are very aware of the military-party dictatorship in the former and the theocratic rule in the latter, with our recent discussions on Canadians deported to Syria and the recent, horrific story affecting us in Iran.

I'd think the other nearby country that had experienced an economic boom of sorts was postwar Lebanon. I don't know about the most recent developments there however. Lebanon is under Syrian military domination, but the human rights situation is in no way comparable.


From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
DrConway
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 490

posted 24 July 2003 10:13 PM      Profile for DrConway     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Mishei:
Hmmm and what of the budgets elsewhere in the region ....say Egypt, Syria or Iran?

Christ. For a guy who's such an alleged left-winger I can't believe you're such a parochial, reactionary, stiff-necked individual that you automatically, reflexively, seek to deflect criticism of a domestic Israeli issue (that doesn't even touch the Palestinian-Arabs) away from Israel and onto the surrounding Arabic nations.

Jesus H. Fucking Christ on a bicycle!!!!!!

Stop storming ahead and look at yourself, Mishei. You've boxed yourself into such a corner that the only thing you do is whenever someone criticizes any aspect of Israeli policies no matter who they affect you instantly jump in with some irrelevant bilge about the surrounding Arabic nations as though comparing Israel with countries that come in dead last in most quality of life stats is something to be proud of.

I say "BUGGER THE BLOODY ARABIC NATIONS! I'M TALKING ABOUT BLOODY ISRAEL HERE NOT BLOODY SYRIA FOR THE LOVE OF BLOODY PROVIDENCE!"

Now that I've gotten that out of my system, I'm just going to ask you what you think of this shameful disregard for poor people in Israel on the part of the Israeli government.


From: You shall not side with the great against the powerless. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Mishei
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2785

posted 24 July 2003 10:28 PM      Profile for Mishei     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I have said this before and will reiterate it again (if only to ensure that Doc doesn't go any more apoplectic), Israel is no Utopia. On domestic issues Likud is a Conservative right wing governrmrnt whose policies are not my policies. They need changing. They need to be more progressive.

It only impresses me that so many here are so concerned with internal Israeli social policy..a country thousands of miles from here.

What is the domestic situation like in Iceland...does anyone know? Or how are migrant workers treated in Hungary? Is Austrailia's social welfare system equal to ours?

Rarely see the domestic issues of other countries discussed here. Just an interesting observation is all.


From: Toronto | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
lagatta
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2534

posted 24 July 2003 10:49 PM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
There have been discussions of migrant Roma's plight in Hungary on babble. And as for Australia, discussions of that otherwise advanced, democratic, wealthy and empty country's shameful refugee policies. Probably discussions of indigenous people in Australia as well, if I recall. But as for Iceland, I concur. Very little discussion on Iceland... Wasn't that at one point the country with the highest percentage of women in government in the world?
From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
Doug
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 44

posted 24 July 2003 10:55 PM      Profile for Doug   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Damn that Icelandic Bjork, her stupid swan dress and that nasty neoconservative Army of Me song!
From: Toronto, Canada | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
lagatta
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2534

posted 24 July 2003 11:06 PM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
As for Australia, a Jewish-culture titbit. The mum of a friend of mine, visiting cousins in Tasmania, went to the oldest synagogue on that island south of Oz. But no, it is not the synagogue farthest south in the world, that is (of course) in Argentinian Patagonia, though some Jewish scientists in Antartica made a rather spurious claim for a Schul down there...
From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 478

posted 25 July 2003 11:40 AM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
lagatta, I think it was Wales we talked about as having the highest percentage of women in government.

But Iceland -- sure, let's talk about Iceland. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I have a vague memory that Iceland is one of the oldest democracies in the world, if not the oldest. In the mid-C18, before the two romantic revolutions (American and French), there were, I believe, three democracies already in Europe: Iceland, Geneva, and a city-state in Italy whose name escapes me now.

Rousseau was famously proud of being a citizen of Geneva, although we note that he never returned after leaving as a young man.

From all I've heard, everything is great in Iceland. Their only social problem is that some of their young people apparently get bored with being so happy all the time, and seek diversion in alcohol.


From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
lagatta
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2534

posted 25 July 2003 12:08 PM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
You are right on both counts, but I believe Iceland is also one of the top countries in terms of female parliamentary representation - must check that out.

The main social problem is boredom - it is insular, eh? And like on the Scandinavian mainland, very long winter nights that cause seasonal depression and excessive drinking, even without the type of underlying social problems we might find in post-Soviet Russia or the Canadian North.

On the other hand, according to a fellow I knew who lived there for several years, Iceland has the world's highest literacy rate and several daily newspapers for such a small population.


From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 478

posted 25 July 2003 04:19 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Doug:
Damn that Icelandic Bjork, her stupid swan dress and that nasty neoconservative Army of Me song!


Doug, I only just noticed this, and I hafta tell ya: I just acquired something called a swan dress, and it is ever so nice. It is made out of hemp. No more snarky comments about swan dresses, please.

And Mishei: Thoughts about Iceland? Your topic, after all.


From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
lagatta
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2534

posted 25 July 2003 04:55 PM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I couldn't resist looking up the question of Icelandic Jews or Jewish refugees in Iceland. There were indeed some. There were also shitheads who saw racially "pure" Iceland as the cradle of Aryanism. http://www.haruth.com/JewsIceland.html

Skdadl, I love hemp fabrics. Could you describe your swan dress? And where did you buy it?


From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 478

posted 25 July 2003 08:13 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
rawganique.com

Go to women's wear 1, and the swan dress is right there. I bought a sweater for Fang as well, and the texture of the knits is so silky -- really beautiful.

Unfortunately, it's an American site. I googled Canadian sites, and there is a Canadian group that is trying to start up, but at the moment all they have is T-shirts. The rawganique people were very clever in the way they mailed my stuff, though -- they mailed things separately, and were vague enough about the contents that I didn't get hit with duty charges. !

When you read their brochure, you start to think that nothing bad would ever have happened in history if we'd all just kept using hemp for everything. It does seem to be a magic plant, though.

Simple though the swan dress looks, it is amazingly flattering. I couldn't quite believe it -- it smooths out lumps and bumps! I think the forest skirt looks neat too ... *slaps hand: greedy skdadl!*


From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
lagatta
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2534

posted 25 July 2003 08:49 PM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Yes, that is a pretty dress - and it comes in burgundy! It is a bloody shame that there aren't better Canadian online catalogues. "Images of Canada" is rather tacky.

We'll have to discuss Hungary and Australia as well...


From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 478

posted 25 July 2003 09:03 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
lagatta, you have already said everything I know about Australia and Hungary. We did Poland yesterday.

Do note that rawganique does Romania for us: a lot of their sewing is done there, and they are proud of the relatively high and rising labour standards in Romania as it approaches EU membership.

Now, there's always Austria. Something came up yesterday about Austrian millionaires who were giving Sharon a lot of money privately.

All I know about Finland is Sibelius, but that has made me feel very positive about the Finns. Oh -- and we've come full circle back to Hungary, haven't we? Finno-Ugraic -- isn't there a curious relationship between the two languages, and the two peoples?

Migration: what can I tell ya? Makes the world go round, eh?

(PS: Do you know whether it is illegal to grow hemp in Canada? It is cannabis, but not smokeable. Apparently, though, as the rawganique brochure explains, growing it is illegal in the U.S., even though it would be better for the soil and better in all sorts of other ways than cotton. Anyway, they are trying to change the law, hoping to make the industry work efficiently entirely at home. I wonder whether our Canadian guys face the same problems, of having to import the fabric.)


From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged

All times are Pacific Time  

   Close Topic    Move Topic    Delete Topic next oldest topic   next newest topic
Hop To:

Contact Us | rabble.ca | Policy Statement

Copyright 2001-2008 rabble.ca