Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Isreali economic reforms bear fruit.

Nehemia Shtrasler, in Haaretz, reports the Isreali economy is booming. Unemployment has dropped fro 10.7 percent in 2003 to 8.3 percent. "The number of people receiving unemploymnet payments fell from 97,000 in 2003 to 57,000, and the number receiving income support decreased from 155,000 to 140,000 in the same period."

He writes:

There is a single explanation for all the good things described here: A responsible, free-market economic policy expressed through budgetary restraint, a small deficit, tax cuts, reforms, privatization and opening the economy to the free movement of goods, services and capital, or in short: Less government, more business.

This is the policy that has been implemented in Israel since 1985, by all governments, but it was greatly accelerated by then finance minister Benjamin Netanyahu in 2003. We are now reaping the fruits of his cuts, reforms and privatizations. We can now also thank the god of politics who prevented Amir Peretz from implementing his plans in 2003 - more taxes, more government, no reforms, no privatization.
It's good to see the economy improving. I'm glad fewer people are on welfare. So when can the US take Israel off its welfare rolls? Since 1973 US international welfare to Israel has cost an average of $5,700 for every Ameican and that was as of two years ago. It is higher today since Isreal receives more international welfare payments from the US than any other country. Aid and loan guarantees to Israel, from the US in 2005, amounted to over $5.6 billion.