Do nine tenants in a residential building have the right to place the dumpsters in front of the tenth tenant's door? Seemingly, they enjoy a clear majority. But the role of democracy is not only to assure the governance of the majority, but to protect the rights of the minority. This simple perception was handed down by Shulamit Aloni to pupils at an elementary school in Holon many moons ago, and it comes back to mind whenever the latest dysfunctional idiot in Israeli politics flaunts slogans about the will of the people, the governance of the majority etc.
The Netanyahu government was chosen lawfully, in alliance with the rules of democracy. Those who cry out: "They've deprived us of our country," are, well, no more than crybabies. The rules of democracy haven't been broken. No one has altered the rules, not even the bastards.
Yes, but the fact that a government is chosen lawfully, abiding by the rules of democracy, doesn't necessarily mean that the country will be run as a law-abiding state and that democracy will be protected from those who try to undermine and destroy it, including the government itself and the prime minister himself, with his own bare hands.
Netanyahu is crippling the very foundations of democracy by clutching on to three major ministries – Foreign, Finance and Communications – while ravaging them like a crazed elephant. He crushes senior civil servants, weakens the gatekeepers and appoints unworthy people who can be nicknamed "Filbers," referring to the director general of the Communications Ministry. Their main attribute being loyalty to the interests of Netanyahu, and their only goal – the abolishment of any opposition to the totalitarian rule which he has been striving to establish.
He incites and encourages incitement against citizens – the Arab minority, the state of Tel Aviv, human rights organizations, writers and artists. He turns against senior business figures who don't abide to him, media people who dare criticize him, and just plain old Israelis who get in his way while heading to Davos. Cab drivers for instance.
A law-abiding state? Laws can be broken, bent or ridiculed. Dozens of laws which were subject the daunting legislation process under the previous government – his government! – met their early demise in the passed year, just because they were passed by parties who were later exiled to the opposition. And so we have witnessed the death of Yair Lapid's equality in the shared burden initiative and Orly Levi-Abecasis' social laws. He has no mercy for children either. The teachers' obligation to inform parents when their children have skipped school is not in on Bibi's agenda.
Concurrently, he initiates, or enables, various wacos in his party to initiate laws which are of clear and immediate threat, amongst them laws that put to ridicule the very foundations of democracy, laws that undermine the principles of social equality, laws which bruise Israel's reputation, laws that make a mockery of war against corruption, laws that destroy secular education. And the list goes on.
Are these Putin-like initiatives pre-meditated, or are they the hallucinations of a ruler whose paranoia is nourished by backscratchers? Those who have worked with him warmly advise not to treat his intentions lightly.
The Messiah King Netanyahu, in his view, can't make do with a mere fence protecting us against the deadly animals of the Middle East in order to salvage the State of Israel. The prime minister wishes to weaken the political system, and while doing so, dwarf his ministers as well. On the second tier, he is trying to undermine trust in holders of public positions and eliminate their ability to stand in his way. On the third tier he is doing all he can, literally all he can, to kill the free press.
The bombshell hidden within this analysis is that it has not been worded by a Leftist from the state of Tel Aviv, but by right wing folk who are closely acquainted with the prime minister. They speak of him in awe, some even admire him, and they undoubtedly support his political views and his macro-economical perceptions. But, none the less, Netanyahu's "big plan" – to destroy democracy in order to save the state – scares them. They shared their fears with the writer of this column, out of true and utter anxiety.