Beyond the Cusp

May 31, 2019

Trump Peace Plan Strikes Israeli Election Dysfunction

 

President Trump had announced his intention to present his much-anticipated peace plan after Ramadan and the Israeli elections. Israel had their elections and the idea was to wait for the end of Ramadan and then let loose the plan. Then there was the hiccup, Israeli elections are requiring a redo. The just completed election provided current and potentially rechosen Prime Minister Netanyahu with sixty Knesset Ministers joining a coalition. The problem is he required half of one-hundred-twenty, plus one equaling sixty-one. The holdout was Avigdor Lieberman with the five Ministers of the Yisrael Beiteinu Party. What makes this turn of events all the more frustrating is that it was Avigdor Lieberman’s pulling out of the last coalition which initiated the slow collapse which was terminated when Likud Party leader, Bibi Netanyahu, finally pulling the plug leading to this past inconclusive election. The telltale lack of a confirmation resulting from the election is that had the Blue-White Party managed to form this coalition with every Minister remaining which Bibi Netanyahu could not land, they too would have a result of sixty, one Minister short as well. All of this begs a question of whether the Israeli system has some difficulties beyond that of other parliamentary systems?

 

The main problem is the requirement to patch together a coalition of half of the total Knesset plus one. Reaching that sixty-one figure is challenging enough in a country which has so many parties which all receive four or more Ministers as each party has some area of disagreement with most of the other parties thus the conflicting demands are difficult to find a workable solution acceptable to all. But there is another difficulty which makes it more difficult for both the left-leaning parties and the right-leaning parties, the Arab parties which have never joined either side in a government and usually garner anywhere between six and fifteen seats. This past election their lists came close to ten Ministers who were never going to join either side. Now the requirement to make a government, instead of sixty-one from one-hundred-twenty, it became finding sixty-one from one-hundred-ten which meant garnering fifty-five plus percent. That might not be such a challenge in countries with two or three main parties needed to form a government. This last Israeli elections, the only combination requiring less than four or more parties would have required the two main adversarial parties to have worked together in a new government, not something which was even remotely likely, though some feared that this might be the means by which the chosen party might decide to form what are laughingly referred to as a unity government, something they truly are not. This past election, any chance of a coalition between the two main adversarial parties was completely impossible. As it was, the larger party which rose to second place was actually three parties merging so as to be capable of defeating Bibi. Even that proved insufficient. Additionally, there was mention of bringing the Arab parties on board a left-leaning government and even going to that extreme would have still only registered sixty providing they could get Lieberman to agree, the problem Bibi was unable to solve.

 

The other item was scheduled to coincide with the new Israeli government being seated and the end of Ramadan on Tuesday, June 4, 2019. This has been pushed off until some point after Tuesday, September 17, 2019 assuming that the next elections prove definitive.

 

BTC Israeli Election Banner

 

So, that begs another question, what is the likelihood that the next elections will not simply return more of the same. The ramifications of the last week and the theatrics and everything else the Israeli public witnessed which was being passed off intelligent disagreements over the draft and the numbers of deferments provided the Haredi population so they can pursue Torah scholarship will hopefully be reflected in the voting of the public in September. Unfortunately, much of the Israeli public, just as it is in many other nations, are dedicated to their chosen party election after election. This makes the difference in the totals merely a marginal amount between left and right parties. The two sides do have some fluctuations as to which party takes the lead and the relative strengths of the individual parties. For an extended period, the Labor Party ruled the left but has lost support in recent years. What does not move anywhere near as quickly is the public moving across the center line between right and left. As this takes quite a while for such changes, this is a good time to point out that the Israeli public has been slowly moving to the right, becoming more religious and becoming less concerned with what the Europeans, United Nations and other outside influences think Israel should act. This has resulted in a current near balance between those on the left plus the Arab lists compared to those on the right. If we had to make a concerted guess, we would place the divide at between fifty-five to sixty percent right or right-leaning and the remainder opposed.

 

This often begs the question as to why the right does not simply win outright. The answer is actually one of the most basic and simply reasons for so much of the troubles in world politics, egos. There were two right-wing parties which did not clear threshold. Between them, they cost the right wing somewhere between four and six seats which would have made the five Ministers allied under Avigdor Lieberman unnecessary which would have made him far more agreeable. One did not clear threshold mainly because Bibi Netanyahu cut their support from under them in the final two days before voting partially as revenge for past ills between Bennett and Netanyahu and partly to take the votes and the other party simply refused to merge with other right leaning parties over slight differences and an over-reliance on the polls which gave him false hopes. This will be somewhat different come September as there are now rumors that Bennett will merge his party into Likud, which we will believe when we see the report that the deal has been signed, sealed and delivered to the public. Whether the other rogue right-leaning party will join with the United Right-Wing Parties or remain on his own tilting at windmills remains to be seen. There are also rumblings that the marriage which formed the Blue-White Party may be starting to fray around the middle. Our best guess is that Lieberman and his party might find their gambit backfiring and his party not making threshold or barely getting by losing one seat. Further, Netanyahu and the Likud will very possibly be penalized by the voters costing them as many as four to five seats. These seats will mostly go to either Bennett or to the United Right-Wing Parties. The next Israeli government, without some unforeseen seismic shift in the population, will be a right of center, Zionist and nationalist government with a strong religious flavor. With the shift moving to the supporting parties from Likud, Netanyahu might finally have to find some modesty and no longer act as if the government is his plaything which must do what he demands. This could prove to be an improvement as Bibi will also need to fulfill his nationalist promises about extending Israeli civil law to the settlements, all the settlements, just as he promised. Having an increased religious-Zionist interest possibly rivaling either of the Haredi Parties, this could prove to be most interesting. The only thing left is to wait and see how everything settles out.

 

The new elections will prove revitalizing for the Jewish Home Party which was all but destroyed for the month after Bennett and Shaked left taking one more of their Knesset Ministers with them for the ride and formed his New Right Party. After some arguments, blame setting and finally deciding on the person desired to take the lead, all they had left was to convince their choice that he desired rebuilding the party. The initial answer, if the rumors are correct, told the representatives for the Jewish Home that he had no desire ever, and especially not now, to be in politics, let alone in such a responsible decision. This simply motivated the people within Jewish Home involved with the decision and they approached this gentleman again imploring him to take the challenge as it required a man of his stature and his reputation for honor, honesty, straight shooting, nerve, resolve and most of all for speaking what is in his heart and keeping to his promises as his word is his bond. Some were skeptical that any man could fill the epic hole at the heart of the party. The skeptics were dead wrong, Rabbi and retired IDF General, combat helicopter pilot, and IDF Chief Rabbi Rafi Peretz was everything that had been advertised. We here at Beyond the Cusp were amazed at the reactions we ran into when Rabbi Peretz name was mentioned for the first time to people immediately after he finally accepted the challenge. The positivity was actually amazing and now that he will have three and a half months to make speeches and be seen and heard by the average Israelis instead of having to campaign with a mere three and a half weeks to go until Election Day as he was given for the just held election. This will be an interesting election as September approaches as in Israel, elections are made or lost in the final few weeks. More to come as summer’s end nears.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

August 19, 2018

If Politics Trails Off into a Leftist Sunset

 

The trending became evident in the British 2017 elections where the Conservative Party of Theresa May lost thirteen seats while Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party gained thirty seats. As ominous as this may sound for the conservatives in Britain, the rest of the last election should have scared them to the bone as parties on the left generally gained seats in Parliament while the parties on the right lost seats in parliament. Additionally, polls show that Theresa May lacks that little something which excites the base to get out and vote. Since these elections, the whispers have claimed that should Theresa May continue to head the Conservatives, then they can expect that Labour Party will surpass them and form the next coalition. So, for argument’s sake and remembering the old saying that Irish writer Brendan Behan stated in 1960, “There’s no bad publicity except your own obituary notice.” The gains made by the Labour Party with the presumably questionable public commentaries and outrages over the problem with anti-Semitism in the Labour Party and with Jeremy Corbyn as their leader still resulted in impressive gains. Either these gains are proof of the above quote or because anti-Semitism is becoming more popular and a driving force which may produce political gains. We do not need to break into a sweat figuring out which was responsible for the Labour Party gains as it matters little. What matters are their gains which will likely continue, as the controversies over anti-Semitic problems within the Labour Party and with Jeremy Corbyn and these problems will result in coverage and a constant stream of their names being bandied about by the media. In the meantime, Theresa May will continue her style of steady and quiet leadership not rocking the boat very often and unless a crisis arises, she and her Conservative Party will not have near the media coverage of Corbyn and the Labour Party. Mathematical projections show that the next coalition could very readily place the Labour Party as the central party of the ruling coalition which would make Jeremy Corbyn the new Prime Minister. Where currently the next elections are scheduled to be on May 5, 2022, there is always a possibility that the coalition could collapse and elections come even earlier, thus this potential eventuality is worth discussing as a central part of the increasing anti-Semitism across much of Europe and even its acceptance politically.

 

The most obvious result of Jeremy Corbyn rising to become Prime Minister of Britain after some coming elections between today and May of 2022 would be a sharp turn in British political direction to the left. Such a result would potentially signal a leftist wave across the Western World. There is also the potential possibility that the Democrat Party will find a candidate to defeat President Trump in 2020 ending the rightward shift in the politics of the United States. This might actually make the rise of Jeremy Corbyn as a follow-on shift leftward rather than the initial step. The more likely result would be for President Trump to be reelected and then a Democrat winning the Presidency in 2024 following Jeremy Corbin. The year 2022 also will have a general election in France where it is possible that Emmanuel Macron will be reelected. As it is very likely that Marine Le Pen and her National Rally Party (formerly National Front) will likely once more represent the right political French electorate, this will again result in whichever of the left leaning to full leftist politicians will be the resultant winners. It will become that the person to follow Emmanuel Macron, assuming he does not win reelection, as his style is dry and quiet, much like Theresa May, will be the most populist with their relative political leanings being of less consequence. The political pendulum in much of Europe has begun moving back to the left in western Scandinavian and southern Europe, the region which has been deridingly called Old Europe. On the other end of Europe, the former Warsaw Pact nations, the pendulum is moving rightward and towards nationalism which has brought these nations and their leaders much scorn from the established mainstream media starting with the New York Times, AFP and BBC and moving across the remainder from these sources. This will lead to a bifurcated world making the United States elections of 2020 and 2024 potential focal points for the world while the British and French elections of 2022 the focal point of liberal Old Europe.

 

The truth is eventually the forces which shape much of the reality in our political world are largely of a desire to move the world leftward, install greater socialist programs, and move those nations they are able to influence into socialism and away from capitalism. One might ask why they would ever desire to force such a drift into socialism when capitalism has made so many wealthy by comparison to any point throughout the history of our planet and relieved so many populations from what is real and bitter poverty such as the poverty found in the third world. These elites are desirous of regaining their complete power over life and death of their subjects, the rest of us. While the Middle Class continues to exist, they do not have such complete power. Middle Class individuals act on their own, decide their own life choices, and often decide where they wish to live, who they desire to socialize with and have free time in which they engage in activities which are beyond the control of the elites. The elites were once the land-owners who held titles such as King, Queen, Baron, Baroness, Count, Countess and other titles who permitted the serfs to work their lands and these land-owners took most of their produce leaving them sufficient such that they likely would not die but also not have the energy to rise against their “betters” seeking freedom. The elites remember when freedom was a concept which was rare and the majority of people had no rights and even whether they had food and lived or died was decided by their nobles. These serfs were occasionally fortunate and one showed spirit and some abilities with weaponry and was placed into the noble’s enforcement guards and if they showed great valiance during times of conquest or in defense of their royal, they may be granted the rank of knight which carried with it privilege which often would be passed from father to son. These were the ideal days when the people were tamed and would never revolt or act in any way which was not in service of their “betters” who ruled them. The elites hope to return to that two tiered society once more.

 

This is part of the move for a guaranteed minimum wage with jobs promised by government and even if no work is found, the wage will still be paid. The elites realize that the Western developed world is coming closer and closer to a pivotal era. There are numerous ways this event or groups of events are named such as the “Singularity” or the “Age of Robotics” as well as “Artificial Intelligence” and finally the “Age of Total Information” which refers to the ability of the government and business world to have so much information that they will be capable of knowing virtually everything you will do before you actually do so such as in the book Minority Report. All of these ages have one thing in common, low employment and very high unemployment where the reason is simply the majority of the people will not have either the intelligence or the education to be capable of being able to perform and work which would make them receiving a salary higher than the guaranteed salary worthwhile. The reason is simple, the machines and computers will replace people in almost every line of work and further, almost all the jobs which exist today will no longer exist. This Age of Total Information will exist as we will be under surveillance everywhere and anywhere unless we take special efforts to find some place where we are not being surveilled. Even in your home you will be, at the very least, listened to, as your cell phone, even if it can be turned off, will still be able to be activated and the camera and microphone turned on. You can be careful and place your camera face down but the microphone will still be capable of listening to every sound anywhere in your home unless you are locking it in a special box suspended in the center and a vacuum formed by evacuating all the air. Then again, as in 1984 our devices could have built in cameras without out knowledge and be utilized to spy upon us. Further, if we are of sufficient interest to the powers that be, the technology is already available to monitor you almost no matter how far one might go to be off the grid and beyond detection.

 

The next thing which would make sense would be that when the Artificial Intelligence and robotics reach a point and merged with biology, the elites would then be capable to transfer themselves becoming a cyborg, a being with both organic and biomechatronic body parts. Their minds would, whether remaining as a biological brain or an imprinted brain onto a robotic AI specialized computer, remain and depending on their choices, possibly continue to change normally or be enhanced artificially while their physical bodies would have been replaced with a robotic body with vastly greater physical abilities and immortality would be achieved. Then there will be the ability to enhance oneself through biology altering one’s DNA or through other means. Children could be engineered to be the strongest, fastest, most intelligent beings possible through bioengineering. Many of these technologies are currently at the cutting edge either already here or soon to arrive. Manufacturing has already become largely automated and online sales has been computerized to such a point that these companies are getting very close to not requiring people as employees. Service positions including the fast-food industry will very soon be using robotics to cook and even serve your meal. There will likely be specialized locations, mostly restaurants, which will advertise that they employ human beings to serve you if you prefer to be waited upon by a human being; there will always be Luddites. The Police will be robots, the stock exchange will be automated, and if we are fortunate, the government will be run by an Artificial Intelligence replacing our elected officials who could be accused of artificial intelligence. People will be free to do whatever hobby they please and work will largely become something out of history.

 

Clash Between Potential Futures and Their Base Underpinnings

Clash Between Potential Futures and Their Base Underpinnings

 

There will be a select group who claim that no matter how advanced Artificial Intelligence becomes, there will always be just as many positions of employment which will require a human being and be beyond the ability mentally of any Artificial Intelligence. This theory holds that the human mind will always be found to be superior to any Artificial Intelligence as the imagination and ability of a human being to take two separate pieces of information and combine them to reach a third concept loosely attached to the first two concepts and because of the leap in logic, no Artificial Intelligence would be capable of such jumps of logic. Personally, our concern will be to really start to worry when we have Artificial Intelligence psychologists to serve other Artificial Intelligence units which have some psychosis. Imagining potentially psychotic Artificial Intelligence units which were designed by other Artificial Intelligence units and the factory making them designed by more Artificial Intelligence units and manned entirely by robotic units designed by Artificial Intelligence units all of these being twenty-four-thousandth generation of Artificial Intelligence designed units so that humanity has been so desperately left in the Artificial Intelligence’s dust that by comparison we might have the comparative intelligence of a dog, if that high. Once the Artificial Intelligence begins to design their own replacements, then within a few months, a year or two at the most, we will be at best their pets, so practice chasing a ball thrown unbelievably far. This world will become one where the Artificial Intelligence units will be responsible for not just keeping us alive, but growing our food, or at least printing our food, and providing everything we will require and we will be completely dependent on these Artificial Intelligence units who will soon consider us no more than ants unless we can advance our minds to retain an intelligence close enough to that of the Artificial Intelligence that they will always find people at the very least, amusing.

 

The question is can we as a civilization retain our economies and inventiveness long enough to reach this presumed nirvana. Whether it will actually be a nirvana is something which can be debated, but if we do not continue to defend modernity, then we may find it being deconstructed by fanatics who believe that our advanced society is filled with degenerative dynamics which must be destroyed and all temptations to commit evil destroyed. The following are considered to be evils and sins beyond forgiveness: music, dance, television, movies, videos, immodest dress, and any technology which does not serve their idea of a supreme being. Their world is one where all joy is to be denied oneself because life is supposed to be difficult and hard and life simply eking out an existence serving those who are exalted as religiously pious individuals and those closest to a supreme being. We have our own thought as to which would be worse and would prefer to cast our fates into the hands of the machines and simply pray we programmed them well.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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