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Israel's Wayward Prime Ministers

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Submitted by Robert Sherer (United States), Jul 5, 2004 at 12:50

The problem is the political system in Israel, which insulates the politicians from the wrath of the voters. The members of the Knesset, unlike the members of the U.S. Congress and the state legislatures, feel no need to answer to the voters for their actions, since they are not chosen by the voters. They owe their seats to the respective parties' central committees, which puts them on the ballot and gives them a (hopefully) safe seat. If I, while visiting Washington, walk over to the House Office Building, and into the office of Barney Frank, and intruduce myself to his staff as "I live in Brookline", the Congressman's staff will treat me with respect, welcome me to Washington, and ask, "What can we do for you, Mr. Sherer?" Members of Congress face the voters every two years in the House, every six years in the Senate. Each of them periodically sends mail to his constituents informing them what he is doing, what he has accomplished, and explaining why certain things were done or not done. And, if no voters ask the questions , people like Daniel Pipes and other reporters and columnists are more than happy to do so. Does MK Shlomo Shmendrik have to go through anything like this? All he has to answer to are the members of a committee who decide where "on the list" MK Shmendrik is going to be -put. So, if the ordinary MK can disregard the voice of the people, does the Prime Minister need to be any more responsible to them Yitzchak Rabin showed the people of Israel what he thought of them when protests were made at his breaking all of his campaign promises. His reaction to the protests was, "They can spin like propellers!"
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Reader comments (42) on this item

Title Commenter Date Thread
1PM Benjamin Netanyahu [109 words]Lujack SkylarkMar 17, 2013 01:41204401
Accessions by God [68 words]Ruby Jeena YuvalSep 7, 2010 00:04177761
ironically, this was his exact intention [192 words]yuval Brandstetter MDMar 18, 2009 06:13152439
olmert [24 words]mrotunnokochDec 6, 2007 15:32115833
Men of a certain age want a legacy [69 words]Arthur CohnApr 5, 2005 15:4721376
Modest politicians? [58 words]DanSep 19, 2004 12:0517030
Is the Behavior Difficult to Explain? [107 words]Joseph BergerJul 14, 2004 19:1715971
Additional thoughts on weak policies [294 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
David WooJul 9, 2004 06:4715932
UNRELIABLE DOWNRIGHT DANGEROUS POLITICIANS [193 words]ShulamithJul 8, 2004 05:1715924
I suggest another reason for these changes: [282 words]IlanaJul 7, 2004 08:5015915
Israel's Wayward Prime Ministers [294 words]Robert ShererJul 5, 2004 12:5015887
Almost... [267 words]Adam HalleyJul 4, 2004 07:1115882
Political correctness [26 words]Walter D'UllJul 2, 2004 06:4515874
Spine implants needed [64 words]Lori Lowenthal MarcusJul 1, 2004 12:5215867
Reality sets in [66 words]Abraham WalfishJul 1, 2004 11:4915866
A more genuine humility needed? [14 words]timothyJun 30, 2004 23:2815859
Disingenious [39 words]Bernard ElinoffJun 30, 2004 21:2515858
Israeli politicians are no different [274 words]Kenneth BesigJun 30, 2004 16:5615857
Wayward Prime Ministers [121 words]Ely SilkJun 30, 2004 14:4015856
The main reason [11 words]MosheJun 30, 2004 08:4815853
Boy it seems that you are naming a candidate [121 words]AaronJun 30, 2004 06:0115852
Delivery on promises [166 words]Don CarsonJun 30, 2004 01:2715849
Why Prime Ministers go soft [20 words]Roslyn FranklJun 29, 2004 22:1815847
Why? [76 words]Ruth LowryJun 29, 2004 21:1515846
You go, Daniel [143 words]Diane Wolff/Author/JournalistJun 29, 2004 17:2115843
Israeli Prime Ministers [88 words]Lloyd Lionel KleinJun 29, 2004 16:3215842
The Israeli Prime Minister Conumdrum [159 words]Robert GuinaughJun 29, 2004 16:2615841
Why Israeli Politicians Lie [268 words]Yael Amishav MedvedJun 29, 2004 16:1215840
Israeli Prime Ministers' failure to do what they said they would do. [208 words]Donald W. BalesJun 29, 2004 15:1615838
Sign of defeat [11 words]tariq ahmedJun 29, 2004 14:5115837
Right and Wrong [239 words]John W. McGinleyJun 29, 2004 14:3915836
Peace with Arabs??? [130 words]Bob HathawayJun 29, 2004 12:3115835
Don't be so quick to criticize [183 words]Enid D. HorowitzJun 29, 2004 11:3215834
Undemocratic Impulses? [201 words]Saul RapkinJun 29, 2004 10:5115830
Perhaps it's pressure [52 words]R. BlockJun 29, 2004 09:5415829
Change in Direction [1325 words]Peter G. JonesJun 29, 2004 09:5215828
Close, But No Cigar.... [255 words]Dr. Steven TillJun 29, 2004 09:5015827
Why is it only apeasing policy? [100 words]AlexKJun 29, 2004 09:0315823
a modest prime minister ? [188 words]Josef ZorskiJun 29, 2004 08:4015822
Israeli PMs Backtracking [124 words]Peter J. HerzJun 29, 2004 08:2915821
Prime Ministers all had one thing in common [62 words]Paul RinderleJun 29, 2004 07:5015820
priministers [31 words]marySep 15, 2008 18:3015820

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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