Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews -- For those who like their news and truths frank and sharp

There’s nothing new about everything being new under the Knesset ceiling

Click here to see the Knesset session with English simultaneous translation.

In Israel, everything is always upside-down. So, the victory speech of the new PM and the Maiden speech of the new leader of the opposition were held before the vote. A vote no one could know for sure how it would go.

Of course, it all didn’t matter. Members of Knesset had to wave flags, hold up placards with their opinions, shout their disapproval, or clap from approval — all of which is forbidden by Knesset decorum rules. Numerous delegates were removed. But everyone knew it was a big show. Except for the head of the Knesset who twice re-removed Members expelled who stealthily re-entered. At a later date, they will each be punished.

Now, I listened to the speech of the supposedly incoming PM. He will fight for the interests of all Israelis, including those whose representatives will be in the opposition. After that, the supposedly outgoing PM spoke explaining that he represents the majority of Israel’s voters. How can this be true at the same time?

I was thinking back at my second job ever, kitchen assistant in a retirement home. Doling out the plates was an important moment. One day, each of the meat-eaters would get 3 thin slices of roast beef. No, the chef cook told me, don’t pile them up. Spread them out in a hand fan shape. It will seem more. Isn’t that dishonest? No, it’s a matter of elegantly presenting.

That’s what the speakers did. Saying ‘We will also represent the ultra-Orthodox’ is a nice principle. Yet, in the elections, they did not vote for such a coalition. And this coalition will try to effectuate stuff most ultra-Orthodox abhor. It’s still nice to say you don’t see yourself as their enemy in return. It’s not lying; it’s a matter of elegantly presenting.

Clearly, the supposedly upcoming PM tricked his voters. They chose him thinking it was a vote for a coalition between the right and the secular. Instead, they get a broad coalition that’s not right-wing. This trick can be done only once. Next elections, most right-wing voters will punish any right-winger who joined this coalition. But for now, they have a field day.

That’s another Israeli unwritten law. Here, everything is always in flux. So, long-term planning is a waste of time. It’s best to just take care of the problems just in front of you. Later will come later — if it does at all.

(Lapid, alternate PM, did not hold his speech. I never caught him saying a truth. Neither when he ‘explained’ that he was too ashamed to speak in the turmoil. Rather, he didn’t hold his prepared speech because it started that a new era of peace that had arrived. And the pandemonium in the Knesset made clear that era hasn’t arrived yet — not even in the Knesset.)

It was good to see the main speakers not lying. It was only a matter of elegant presentation. No one can know if this coalition will last an hour or four years. But, as long as it lasts, it will keep Israelis glued to the news.

Netanyahu: 59, Bennett 60, one person abstained.

Among the 27 ministers, I counted these minorities: 1 wheelchair-bound woman, 18 men, 16 Caucasians, 5 men with yarmulkas, 2 Muslims, 1 Ethiopian Jew, and 1 openly Gay man. It reminded me of how much more diverse the cabinet of US President Biden is compared to his predecessor, though it did have far fewer Jews than Bennett’s team has.

A feast among the large anti-Netanyahu blog has burst forth. The left has not felt any hope ever since PM Rabin was assassinated. Also, it’s good to celebrate now, since the new coalition will not meet any period of grace.

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, previously a daily blog contributor to the TOI. He often makes his readers laugh, mad, or assume he's nuts—close to perfect blogging. He's proud that his analytical short comments are removed both from left-wing and right-wing news sites. None of his content is generated by the new bore on the block, AI. * As a frontier thinker, he sees things many don't yet. He's half a prophet. Half. Let's not exaggerate. Or not at all because he doesn't claim G^d talks to him. He gives him good ideas—that's all. MM doesn't believe that people observe and think in a vacuum. He, therefore, wanted a broad bio that readers interested can track a bit what (lack of) backgrounds, experiences, and educations contribute to his visions. * This year, he will prioritize getting his unpublished books published rather than just blog posts. Next year, he hopes to focus on activism against human extinction. To find less-recent posts on a subject XXX among his over 2000 archived ones, go to the right-top corner of a Times of Israel page, click on the search icon and search "zuiden, XXX". One can find a second, wilder blog, to which one may subscribe too, here: or by clicking on the globe icon next to his picture on top. * Like most of his readers, he believes in being friendly, respectful, and loyal. However, if you think those are his absolute top priorities, you might end up disappointed. His first loyalty is to the truth. He will try to stay within the limits of democratic and Jewish law, but he won't lie to support opinions or people when don't deserve that. (Yet, we all make honest mistakes, which is just fine and does not justify losing support.) He admits that he sometimes exaggerates to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quite a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * Sometimes he's misunderstood because his wide and diverse field of vision seldomly fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what some love about him. He has written a lot about Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science (including basic statistics), Politics (Israel, the US, and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight reality), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, LGBTQIA+, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), the Climate Crisis, Ecology and Veganism, Affairs from the news, or the Torah Portion of the Week, or new insights that suddenly befell him. * Chronologically, his most influential teachers are his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach, and, lehavdil bein chayim lechayim, Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff, and Rav Meir Lubin. This short list doesn't mean to disrespect others who taught him a lot or a little. One of his rabbis calls him Mr. Innovation [Ish haChidushim]. Yet, his originalities seem to root deeply in traditional Judaism, though they may grow in unexpected directions. In fact, he claims he's modernizing nothing. Rather, mainly basing himself on the basic Hebrew Torah text, he tries to rediscover classical Jewish thought almost lost in thousands of years of stifling Gentile domination and Jewish assimilation. (He pleads for a close reading of the Torah instead of going by rough assumptions of what it would probably mean and before fleeing to Commentaries.) This, in all aspects of life, but prominently in the areas of Free Will, Activism, Homosexuality for men, and Redemption. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, and disturb the comfortable and comfort the disturbed. He aims to bring a fresh perspective rather than harp on the obvious and familiar. When he can, he loves to write encyclopedic overviews. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds should be disputed. In short, his main political positions are among others: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, anti those who abuse democratic liberties, anti the fake ME peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, pro-Science, pro-Free Will, anti-blaming-the-victim, and for down-to-earth, classical optimism, and happiness. Read his blog on how he attempts to bridge any tensions between those ideas or fields. * He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (, born in 1953 to his parents who were Dutch-Jewish Holocaust survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork. He grew up a humble listener. It took him decades to become a speaker too, and decades more to admit to being a genius. But his humility was his to keep. And so was his honesty. Bullies and con artists almost instantaneously envy and hate him. He hopes to bring new things and not just preach to the choir. * He holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam) – is half a doctor. He practices Re-evaluation Co-counseling since 1977, is not an official teacher anymore, and became a friendly, powerful therapist. He became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years, he was active in hasbara to the Dutch-speaking public. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second-generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. If you're a native English speaker and wonder why you should read from people whose English is only their second language, consider the advantage of having an original peek outside of your cultural bubble. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me. * His newest books you may find here:
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