Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Israel faced with housing crisis

Young Israelis riot demanding housing.

The core problem is that the Palestinians built most of the modern infrastructure of the Middle East, including most of Israel's current housing. Palestinians are to construction in the Middle East what Mexicans are to farm work here in the United States -- they dominate the field. When the Israelis let a few Palestinian terrorists stampede them into shutting out the local Palestinians behind "security fences" that look an awful lot like concentration camp fences, they not only did not make Israel appreciably safer, they also shut out their main construction force. The result for the Israeli construction industry was pretty much like if you deported all the Mexicans from the American fields -- the amount of work they're capable of doing basically collapsed, because the supply of non-Palestinians experienced in construction was minuscule by comparison.

My take: If these young Israelis want housing, they best quit with all that university BS and study carpentry and masonry and roofing and other construction fields, because the internment of the Palestinians behind concentration camp fences and the resulting radicalization of Palestinians who were the previous construction work force means there ain't gonna be much buildin' going on otherwise. But wait, these are the same young people who whine and evade the draft because they might have to get dirty... hmm. Yeah, like they're going to get their lilly-white hands dirty in Israeli soil by doing something MENIAL like construction work? Puh-LEEZE!

-- Badtux the Snarky Penguin


  1. I am a Jewish Israeli citizen and RE draft evaders, from what I read in a big newspaper, the motivation to serve in combat units raised this year and the interviewed commander of one of such units said it was partly driven by changing social mores via media too (newspapers). In addition, a political party proposed to create a new law, which would prevent country funding university education of evaders. If you see statistics on how big % of youth doesn't serve, you have to check whether they counted Arabs and haredim, who don't serve as a rule. Of course, some people do evade, but among my social circle they're in minority, so characterizing social protestors as draft evaders isn't fair.

  2. Forgot to mention, this year is the 1st time when the title of the best worker in building industry is given to a Palestinian from a village near Hevron. 1 moldavian and 11 Israeli workers will too get prizes.

  3. As much as I dislike the Israeli regime, and even with the aggravation I feel toward several pushy-ass bastard Israeli emigres I've known I will give those people credit for not being the effete putzes you stereotype. During the summer I spent on a kibbutz there, I saw a lot of Israelis who worked hard with dirty hands. And the roughneck Russian immigrants from the 90s and on are probably capable of physical labour too. Israelis are not the pasty-skinned doughboys and girls you might imagine. I think they used the Palestinians as cheap worker bees because the Israeli citizens could find higher-paying uses for their time, and the economic dynamics of having a semi-slave population to do the grunt work made it more profitable to exploit them on the cheap. Maybe now that the true costs of construction are being reflected, that will quell the push for ever more settlements on the stolen lands.

  4. ""security fences" that look an awful lot like concentration camp fences

    Crikey, you mean the Jews are, er, like the Nazis!

    Oh, but hang on a minute . . .

  5. EL, it's not just the draft evaders, it's general attitude. Did you read the report on the Lebanon invasion? There was a lot of whining about how their weapons were old, their food was expired and inedible, and so forth. They were going up against village militias with Soviet-era weaponry that dated to the 50's and 60's, for cryin' out loud. They shouldn't have needed the latest high-tech whiz-bang to clean out every armed Arab between the border and the Litani River. (shakes head).

    Regarding the construction industry, yes, there are Israeli citizens who are in the construction industry, just as there are non-Mexican farm workers here in the U.S., but the reality is that prior to the 1990's, the Palestinian construction workforce commuting to Israel from Gaza and the West Bank was the primary construction workforce. You likely aren't old enough to remember those days, but having a cheap and plentiful construction workforce makes it *much* faster and easier to build stuff.

    Bukko, you're not familiar with the younger generation in Israel, who are typically the children of Russian immigrants who weren't culturally Jewish to begin with (let us just say that the faltering Soviet Union had much corruption in its births registry and Israeli officials fighting population decline weren't too rigorous in their examinations of documents, if the documents had the right seals from the right officials they were approved even if there was a suspicion the officials had been paid bribes to generate the documents). Their parents did not want to go to Israel anyhow, they ended up in Israel only because Ronny Raygun wouldn't let them into the United States, so they don't have that shared experience of building a nation they love out of dirt. Let us just say that the younger set in Israel are partay harday types. The nightclubs of Tel Aviv are hopping with bored young Israelis on any night. They are a totally different breed from the kibbutzin type you may be familiar with, who are culturally Jewish, who have that shared experience of building a nation in their bones.

    - Badtux the Geopolitics Penguin

  6. Duff, funny now that works. I merely mentioned a fact. You're the one who made the Nazi comparison based on the facts. Which is unusual for you, because usually you make Nazi comparisons based upon nothing at all :).

    Do note, dear Duffer, that concentration camps were *not* invented by the Nazis, and were *not* invented as an extermination device. They were widely used during the Boer wars to deprive the Afrikaners militants of their sustenance, and similarly used during the Filipino-American War to deal with pesky brown people who dared want their independence rather than become a colony of America. Both of these cases long predate the Nazis and are far closer to the Israeli adaptation of the concept which is similarly about dealing with an insurgency amongst pesky folk who don't want you there.

    - Badtux the Bemused Penguin

  7. Of course, of course, how silly of me, whenever anyone mentions concentration camps they don't instantly think of Auschwitz, no, no, of course they don't, they hark back to the Boer War and the Brits.

    I really must try harder!

  8. It depends upon whether you are a student of history, dear Duffer. I assure you that the Boer Wars and the Filipino Wars are quite at the forefront of my thought when it comes to dealing with insurgents and terrorists, because in both the situation was solved with admirable(?) brutality but without full descent to a Stalinist "No People, No Problem" final solution.

    Oh wait, now you shall focus upon my use of the term "final solution", as if it were somehow unique to the political party of a dead German dictator. Oh well, what can I say, you obsess about Nazis the way that closeted gay Republicans obsess about gay people. Oh wait.... :):):).

    - Badtux the Snarky Penguin

  9. My son, the construction worker, so proud!

  10. the children of Russian immigrants who weren't culturally Jewish to begin with
    I wasn't culturally Jewish, unlike my grandparents. USSR did a great job of destroying religion. Besides, Jews who were culturally Jewish still didn't build Israel, if they immigrated later.

    I immigrated at the end of 1990's, so I really don't remember life in Israel before that. :)

    Let us just say that the younger set in Israel are partay harday types. The nightclubs of Tel Aviv are hopping with bored young Israelis on any night.
    I still don't think you're fair. Many not religious comers (Jewish and not) from USSR serve in combat units too. The same can be said of living or partying in Tel Aviv people. In fact, sometimes they party in their military uniforms and once there was a scandal of somebody having a problem with that at some club. Naturally, in a country there are all sorts of people. Are US citizens better in your opinion, had you put a draft again and sent them to situation similar to Israel? Is there a Nirvana state somewhere with only right people, as you would define it? I honestly think Israel has one of the best (military and morally) armies. And plenty of USSR immigrants contribute a lot and honestly love the country, even if they aren't Jews and/or live near Tel Aviv, the place where many jobs and cultural activities are concetrated. Tel Aviv is like Israeli capital for not religious people, whose % decreases all the time in Jerusalem, where I personally wouldn't want to live since most its' citizens are either deeply religious or Arab.

  11. I hate to say it, El, but you pretty much proved my point, though unknowingly. Your problem is that you are young and don't have any point of comparison. I was around when you had some real hard-cases running Israel, folks like Golda Meir and Moshe Dayan. That was a bunch that created a nation out of *nothing* after incredible hardships. I don't think any recent immigrant can understand what that was like. You've come to a nation that already exists as a nation, you don't have the experience of building that nation in your bones, and it makes a difference.

    But of course you are entitled to your opinion. You're there, after all. Perhaps you know some things I don't know. I am few decades older, but older doesn't necessarily mean wiser. Often does, of course. But not always.

    - Badtux the Reminiscing Penguin

  12. someofparts29/7/11 10:51 AM

    You know, actually, when Georgia recently passed laws coming down on immigrants, modeled after the fine example set by Arizona, the agricultural output did drop precipitously.


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