Go vote people, there is still time!!!– and voting deja vu
As Pirate says, if you don’t vote, it is the same as voting for the parties you hate, absolutely hate, the most. There are nearly 30 parties to choose from, so choose one. Choose the one that most closely represents your views, even if ineptly, or most closely opposes the views you find the most distasteful in other parties. None of them are perfect. None of them are great. But a cabinet will be made up of some combination of them, whether you vote or not, and if you don’t vote the likelihood that it will include some of the ones you least want is higher than if you drag yourself off to the voting place. GO VOTE.
I voted. I’m not 100% sure who I voted for and I think it is better this way. This way, I can complain and loudly about both of my options (along with all the options I never entertained). Standing there in the voting booth, I had a serious flashback to my very first vote, coming on to nearly a decade ago, here. Then I stood there and did an eenie meenie minie mo between Labour and Kadima and went with Labour, which was where my heart of hearts lay at the time. I should have hit the reject button on both of them but Labour turned out to be an even worse choice at the time than Kadima and Kadima sucked eggs.
There are good reasons to vote for either of my two choices and a lot of not so good reasons. The good reasons are better than any good reason, in my opinion, of the 28 other parties and the bad reasons are less bad with potentially a caveat here or there. So I pulled out the little squares for both מחל and טב. The good reason for voting for Likud-Beitanu (מחל) is that Bibi has proven to be a pretty strong leader, the strongest we’ve had since Ben-Gurion, in his second go-round. He’s stood up to the U.S. and the hypocritical international community, for the most part, and has had some really good moments. Likud will take the election no doubt.
The good reason for voting Habayit HaYehudi is essentially to keep Bibi honest and strong. Bibi has caved before under international, particularly U.S., pressure. He did a massive cave-in during his first term back in the 90’s and in the beginning of his last term he agreed to the building freeze — something anyone with the smallest shred of a brain knew was an exercise in uselessness and we didn’t even get any credit for having done it. Now that the nightmare of a second Obama term has been visited on the world, the pressure, the anti-Israel appointments to his administration, the nightmare Obama spawned in Egypt, Libya, Syria etc., and an increasingly anti-Semitic Europe are going to make the pressure placed on us in the past 4 years seem like a walk in the park. That is not even mentioning the elephant in the middle of the world –Iran and its desire to nuke us off the face of the earth.
One good way to keep Bibi from caving in the future is to buttress up the further right flank. If Habayit HaYehudi makes a strong showing then two things happen. First, Bibi has to answer domestically and can’t dare cave on important issues that would harm us. Second, it gives Bibi deniable culpability in the international arena — yo, you think I’m right-wing, take a look at these guys and be damn grateful.
So I took my two little squares of paper, flipped them over, turned my head, shuffled them around and around and around, grabbed one and stuffed it into the envelope, sealed the envelope and crumpled the remaining one into my free hand. I voted.