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'What is exactly is the middle life crisis we are hearing about?' Photo: Avihu Shapira
'What is exactly is the middle life crisis we are hearing about?' Photo: Avihu Shapira
 
Hanoch Daum Photo: Rafi Deloya
Hanoch Daum Photo: Rafi Deloya
 
 

Israel’s smartphone protest

Op-ed: While fighting tax burden, Israelis should also make effort to cut down their spending

Hanoch Daum
Published: 08.13.11, 16:18 / Israel Opinion

Here is one sign of the times: Woe is on the artist who refuses to report to the social protest tent city with a guitar, and may the heavens have mercy on those who dare say something against the protest.

 

Just look at the “terrible sin” committed by actress Anat Waxman and singer Margalit Tzanani, who immediately found themselves under a Bolshevik assault, which did not abate for a moment until they took back their words.

 

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So there, I am here to make an almost isolated statement in the media world. A statement that salutes the masses who showed up at the major protest last Saturday night, but asserts that this achievement mostly belongs to the media, which enlisted to the cause in full force and provided this protest with an upgrade that is worth tens of millions of dollars in advertising space.

 

When I see on the news how protest organizers travel from the Tel Aviv tent city to the presidential residence in Jerusalem in a taxi, I wonder what exactly is this middle class crisis we are hearing about. Personally, going into a cab on Rothschild Boulevard in Tel Aviv and telling the driver to head to Jerusalem is something that is not in my lexicon.

 

And that’s before we even talked about the smartphones held by protest leader Daphni Leef and her comrades during the trip to Jerusalem; each such device is worth thousands of shekels. What are their cell phone expenses per month? And how much do they spend on taxis every month? And what about restaurants? And how about cigarettes and alcohol?

 

You may say: The protest refers to social justice. What does the above have to do with it? But it does. Parallel to the struggle, every family around here must take responsibility and live within its means, not necessarily in line with the norm.

 

Try to find a room in a bed & breakfast nationwide, now, when prices are peaking – let’s see if you can. The people are fighting against the cost of living, and I support them, but until this issue is worked out we better ask ourselves whether sometimes we do things that are beyond our financial abilities. The indirect taxes we pay in Israel are too high, but we would do well to address the money we waste directly.

 

 

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