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View Diary: Leviathan and Goliath - Detroit and Jerusalem (17 comments)

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  •  I started laughing at (0+ / 0-)

    "Israel's rapidly deteriorating democracy."

    Yeah, LOL, sorry but Israel is globally recognized as the new hotspot for startups. Hardly "rapidly deteriorating," in reality it is booming

    •  What do startups (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      whizdom, Retroactive Genius

      ...have to do with democracy?

      50 states, 210 media market, 435 Congressional Districts, 3080 counties, 192,480 precincts

      by TarheelDem on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 02:01:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  A "rapidly deteriorating democracy" (0+ / 0-)

        is a democracy that's collapsing. A "booming" democracy is one that is thriving. Israel fits into the latter category by any and all measures.

        •  How many of those startups (0+ / 0-)

          ...are stimulated by the IDF?

          50 states, 210 media market, 435 Congressional Districts, 3080 counties, 192,480 precincts

          by TarheelDem on Thu Dec 26, 2013 at 02:11:17 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  strange confusion between free market/democracy (2+ / 0-)

          The diarist's point was that Israel as a democracy is deteriorating: its government is becoming in fact less and less democratic. Your fact about startups is irrelevant to this point, although it's possible to mis-read the sentence as you have done, assuming that the only way any country can deteriorate is if its economy deteriorates.

          The fact that Israel is a hotbed of startups shows that according to one criterion, for a certain group of people, the economy is thriving. We all know that high-tech startups such as biotech, IT, robotics, etc are capital-intensive and generate relatively few, high-paying jobs. For some people this is great. For others it is irrelevant, or even harmful, since it concentrates the means of production and the political power that stems from wealth in the hands of a few, and leaves them irrelevant to their nation's economic well-being.

          But suppose I grant your point and stipulate that the many startups are proof that Israel's economy is, taken as a whole, thriving. That says nothing about the degree to which democracy is thriving or deteriorating in Israel. The degree to which a country is governed democratically can decrease even as its GDP increases, although to worshipers of the free market this sounds like heresy or insanity.

          I'm sure that if you read the book the diarist is recommending, you would find in it many examples of how democracy is being driven out of Israel by militaristic nationalism and chauvinistic religious fundamentalism. You might disagree with the author that these things are really happening, or that the incidents he describes really do amount to a decrease in democracy. Why don't you read the book and write a diary criticizing it, instead of just dismissing it out of hand because Israel is a great place for IT entrepreneurs to get rich?

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