Jaime Kardontchik
Jaime Kardontchik

Yuval Steinitz for Prime Minister? – Good choice

I was intrigued by this proposal floated today in the press [1]. Of course, the opinion piece was heavily biased by the author’s anti-Netanyahu views. However, it raised my curiosity about Yuval Steinitz. Who is Yuval Steinitz?

A quick web search turned out that he has a PhD in Philosophy. While teaching Philosophy at the Hebrew University he wrote a short book, “An invitation to philosophy,” which was published in 1994 and was used by his students. This increased even more my curiosity, because my superficial knowledge (from the digital media) was that he was just another mediocre politician of the Likud party.

I went to Google Books and read a short preview of his book that included only parts of the first chapter, dedicated to epistemology. The preview included an introduction to the Greek philosophers Parmenides and Zeno. It ended with the French philosopher and mathematician Descartes. It was pure joy to read it: the clarity of the presentation was superb, both the prose and the excellent poetry accompanying it. I was so impressed that I ended up ordering a copy of the whole book at Amazon.

This increased even more my curiosity: what does a philosopher have to do with politics? So, I continued searching the web and I happened to hit into an article written by Amotz Asa-El in year 2010 [2], at the time when the latter was the Executive Editor of the Jerusalem Post. The title of the article was: “Can a philosopher be a treasurer?” I think this article is a must read for everyone interested in knowing a bit more about Yuval Steinitz, a philosopher turned into the Minister of Finance during 2009-2013.

By the way, I also happen to have a copy of Amotz Asa-El’s book “The Jewish March of Folly” (in Hebrew). I interrupted reading it after reaching page 37 (I have a book mark placed at this page), not because the book is bad, but because it mentions a lot of historical places in Israel and I need to get a good map to follow the narrative properly. It would have been nice if Amotz Asa-El would have added a couple of detailed maps in his book to help the reader: not everyone is so familiar with the Bible stories as he is.

I went then to Yuval Steinitz’s biography in Wikipedia. Outstanding: this philosopher turned out to be later on Minister of Intelligence and Strategic Affairs (2013-2015) and Minister of Energy and Water Resources (2015-present).

Yuval Steinitz leaves in the dust any other self-propelled overblown candidates promoted by the media for the Prime Minister office.

I find the suggestion that at the end of Netanyahu’s mandate to form a government (May 4), the Likud (30), together with the religious block (16), propose to Rivlin the candidature of Yuval Steinitz for Prime Minister, quite a positive development that might end the governmental crisis in Israel. New Hope (6) and Yamina (7) should support it. Ra’am (4) and Blue & White (8) could join with honor this coalition as well, giving it a solid 71 majority in the Knesset.

[1] “Sources: PM plans to torpedo Lapid chance of forming government”, Ynet press, by Moran Azulay, May 3, 2021

[2] “Can a philosopher be a treasurer?”, by Amotz Asa-El, MarketWatch, by Amotz Asa-El, March 15, 2010

About the Author
Jaime Kardontchik has a PhD in Physics from the Technion, Israel Institute of Technology. He lives in the Silicon Valley, California.
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