Is Yair Lapid really the voice for the People?
Would Yair Lapid be the best possible Prime Minister chosen to represent Israel to the World?
Jokes are often made about politicians being like used car salesmen. Slick and ready to sell you a glorious package which in fact turns out to be a lemon. Seeing Yair Lapid standing before me, and the intimate audience of hundreds of English speakers, was an eloquent speaker. A man who truly seemed honest. A man that wants not only the Prime Minister but every Knesset member to be beyond reproach. Considering how many Knesset members have been convicted of crimes since the Modern State of Israel was founded it would be nice to clean up shop and end the corruption.
Lapid repeated the story he recently told to Olim Chadashim arriving on a Nefesh b’Nefesh flight from New York. He spoke about his father, an immigrant from Hungary and Nazi torture. A skinny 17 year old teenager who arrived in a new land with a new language. He could have gone to work on a kibbutz but chose to go into the army. From his father Yair Lapid learned not to take this country for granted. That each citizen is responsible for making Israel unique among all other nations.
Yair Lapid says he went into politics because he has children and wants Israel to be the nation his father hoped it would be. He says our politicians are stuck in seeing what is happening now but often put off settling matters. Lapid says we can’t leave the mess for our children and need to make life better for everyone now. Most Israelis are dedicated, patriotic and willing to do their part. Unfortunately the government does not do theirs and the corruption must end.
Lapid says that it is necessary to have a system in place and unlike many politicians he actually has a plan.
1.Security is a major concern yet the government has not set up real strategies for living today. Ministers come and go. In fact there has not been a Foreign Minister in years. The job is split between several individuals who rarely talk and coordinate activities. How can we fight BDS and those who demonize Israel in there is no one doing their job? How can the IDF be expected to work with the government if they don’t know who their liaison is? Lapid assured the audience that as Prime Minister his government would have task forces to deal with these issues
2.How to deal with the Palestinians? During the question-answer part of the program people asked Lapid to elaborate on this. Lapid said how issue of security come into play here. How Israel continues to give up lands for peace, even greenhouses, but we get nothing in return. Or rather we get more conflicts and this is not acceptable. He said that if there are other Arab lands wishing to work with Israel fine but we can’t continue to make concessions. Maale Adumim, Ariel and other “settlement” blocs are not up for grabs. Jerusalem is to remain undivided. Yes, to some it may seem divided between the Jews and Muslims but Lapid said he will not give our capital up. That Israel is a Jewish State and will remain so.
3. How can Israel be a Jewish but Democratic State? Lapid mentioned that when he was growing up there was no law against selling chametz during Pesach. Now that there is a law people buy chametz. He said how there was no law about people eating pork no one ate it but since a law was made people do. He said that there is no law against touching cars on Yom Kippur but if there is one more people may likely drive. His idea is for the factions to work together better. That Israel needs to combine being a democratic nation with being a Jewish one respectfully. If everyone has mutual respect they can work together better. Thus said he believes even Hareidi men should serve in the army just as his children do. That all schools whether Hareidi or Arabic teach math and English. That if Rambam could be a scientist and Solomon speak dozens of languages there is nothing wrong with Israeli schools teaching these subjects. When asked if he wants the Rabbanut dismantled Lapid said “no”. That if people want a Rabbanut sanctioned marriage fine but a civil one should be acceptable. Lapid wants all Jews recognized because that is what makes this nation unique.
4. Electoral System and how to clean up the political system? Lapid sent a proposal into Knesset stating that any member who is convicted of a crime should not be able to serve. Needless to say this not only never became a law but has been ignored. A Jewish State should be held to even higher moral standards than just any other nation. Lapid assured the audience that when elected a major cleanup will occur. That Members without Portfolios are not needed as they cost money and few people even know who they are. To further reduce unnecessary costs and corruption there will no longer be coalition funds. If funds are needed for a project than they need to be part of the budget plan. Lapin said that four year terms will help create a more stable government but that the Prime Minister can only serve 2 terms.
5. Law Enforcement. Lapid acknowledged that due to the corruption at higher levels law enforcement entities are in a shambles. That if someone calls the police to say that their car was stolen not only will it not be found but no one will take responsibility to try and look for it. He finds this unacceptable. He said that if someone is convicted of a crime they need a swift sentencing and jail sentence. Busy intersections need traffic cops and certain areas may need extra police patrols. He mentioned how the “Nachshon Plan” will build a stronger and more effective system which Israel desperately needs.
6. Boosting the Israeli Economy is based on having an innovative economy. When someone asked “what about those who are not in the technology sector?” Lapin gave a very clear answer. He explained how everything is run on technology. That an elderly person can be put in a hospital but they can be kept a home without the fear of picking up an infection from another patient. They may need to be monitored but that can be done from home. They made need an special bed to raise them up and down but that too is a technological advancement. Israel is advanced technologically. The most start ups and largest generic drug companies amongst countries several times larger. The Israeli army uses modern technology to protect us all. In addition Lapin says how the ultra-Orthodox Hareidi and Arab sectors need to be part of the workforce. When someone asked how to better the situation in places like South Tel Aviv and Arab villages Yair Lapid said they need the education to improve their lot. With these skills they can get quality jobs in the workforce.
7. Education and Science shows how each of Yair Lapid’s Seven Point Plan work together. By teaching the younger population core subjects they can progress and become productive members of society. By tossing out a corrupt government who drains the coffers there will be more monies to put towards education. The corruption that gives generation after generation benefits that others don’t have will end so that new immigrants will have the same opportunities as those who families have been here for decades. That a child from Ethiopia or Darfur or East Jerusalem can get a master’s degree funded by the government would be amazing. Lapid feels strongly that the profits from the natural gas found in this region should go towards education and science. Lapid said how there are Israelis teaching at top Universities worldwide but there should be enough funds to keep them in Israel, teaching at Israeli institutions.
This is how to change the country for the best and this is what is on Yair Lapid’s agenda. If you believe in doing away with corruption, boosting the economy, making our borders safer and ensuring that everyone gets equal education and medical care then Yair Lapid should be your choice for Prime Minister of Israel.