Monday, November 26, 2012
The Muddy Path to Israeli Democracy, Likud Style
Because I had night shift at work, I needed to vote in the morning. A friend had called me up in a panic just before I left the house. She had gotten two text messages telling her not to vote. According to them, she should wait until the afternoon, since there were computer problems. She wanted to know if I had any idea if they were legitimate. I gave her the phone number of our top local Likud guy who then told her to show up; the glitches weren't all that bad.
Computerized elections do have their downsides. One of the disadvantages is that there are always glitches-foul ups, technical problems. Another problem is that it takes so long for many people to vote. Some people, and it's not a matter of age, become paralysed when facing one of those interactive touch screens.
While waiting for a computer to be free, we were all given an easy to read (large print) piece of paper that included the names and code numbers of the candidates for us to check off and prepare ourselves so the actual voting could be as easy and quick as possible. It would have had been nicer to have real privacy for this, but considering that I blog my politics, I really didn't care if someone spied my list.
The hardest part was combining the Mattot Arim list of sitting MKs whom they rated as best for Jewish Rights in the Land of Israel with the wannabes in the Manhigut Yehudit (aka Feiglin) list. We had to choose exactly twelve 12 of the candidates.
When it was finally my turn I very quickly voted and, just like last time, I was upset to see that everyone else took so much longer.
We all knew that he was scared that his supporters wouldn't bother to vote.
It wasn't too disturbing when I got an sms telling me polls would close at midnight rather than 10pm, but this morning the news is that Netanyahu and henchmen are keeping under half the polling stations open today. No doubt they are in his territory, not Feiglin's.
I guess the title of the Israeli political science course should really be "Turning Democracy into Corruption" or "Corrupting Israeli Democracy."