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Not everything is Bibi's fault
Op-ed: Social protesters' predictable attacks on PM over price hikes not based on facts, cannot be taken seriously
Benjamin Netanyahu is responsible for many of the bad things that happen in our little country, but probably not for all of them. There's a limit to his wide range of responsibilities. Until it is proven otherwise, he is not responsible for global warming and the severe drought in the United States. Wheat prices there soared, the price of flour increased, and as a result the price of bread in Israel rose by 36 agorot. Is it our fault that due to our geographic location we have difficulties providing enough flour for local consumption and are forced to rely on America?

 

And yet, the news of the rise in the state-controlled price of bread was translated into a harsh indictment against Netanyahu. The social protest and the PR people of the poor released the usual angry statements accusing the prime minister of abusing the weak. Despite the fact that bakery owners revealed that they had demanded a much higher increase in the cost of bread, to avoid bankruptcy, the wave of condemnations created the impression of a cruel government that is ignoring the people's concerns. Only because of the summer vacation were we spared an 'Eretz Nehederet' skit comparing Sara Netanyahu to Marie Antoinette: If there is no bread, let them eat cake.

 

Dear friends and protesters, this is not serious. The economic discourse must be based on facts. If the prime minister is automatically guilty of a price hike that is a consequence of a force majeure situation, and every economic plan is described as a "list of decrees" – then the criticism cannot be taken seriously anymore. The Pavlovian attacks on Netanyahu are turning political discussions in Israel into boxing matches. There are no explanations, only punches.

 

When Meir Sheetrit or Amir Peretz go on the air to respond to the tax increase or price hikes, the listeners know exactly what they are going to say, which will never be, "In this case, Bibi is right."

 

 

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