To bring the message of liberty, legalization and prosperity to the 19th Knesset.
Ale Yarok – Hareshima Haliberalit is a party devoted to promoting reforms in Israel based on the principles of free market and individual freedom.
We will work towards the transfer of authority from the government to the individual and the community. We believe in more freedom as well as more responsibility to citizens, less laws and government coercion. We also believe that the root of many of the schisms in Israeli society is unnecessary and harmful government policy..
In our mind the road to a healthy society begins with accepting the idea of "live and let live" in most areas of daily life.
Individual Liberty: A modern, liberal society depends on freedom of speech and press, freedom of religion and freedom from religion, freedom of movement and freedom of association. In a correct society every individual is sovereign over his life and should not be arbitrarily subjected to the whims of government officials as long as he has not harmed another individual's body or property.
The main role of government is to protect the liberty of its citizens so that they can run their lives in peace and as they wish, without fear of violence and coercion by the government, other citizens or outside threats.
Community before government: We believe that many of the roles appropriated by the Israeli government can be performed more intelligently, compassionately and correctly in a community structure. The taking of too much authority by the central government only causes the weakening and disintegration of the community. The problems the government was aiming to solve only spread and worsen. We will work towards the transfer of powers from the government to the community.
Listening to the voice of reason: putting an end to the war on drugs. The war on drugs, Cannabis in particular, is a war against a million normative citizens.
The war on drugs has not reduced the consumption of drugs but instead has created a vast smuggling and distribution industry at the core of a larger criminal culture. This draws away resources from the police, the army and the court system and thus hinders the ability of the government to protects its citizens from violent crime.
In our mind this harmful attitude must stop. Following in the footsteps of other advanced countries we intend to promote a decriminalization of the use of Cannabis and in the long run to their full legalization. From an outdated criminal attitude to a newer approach that has recently been tried and proved successful in Portugal. We will also work towards the expunging of all criminal records of Cannabis users.
Religion and state:
We aim to separate religious institutions from the state and return them to the individual and the community. Religion is an individual's private business. Government involvement in religious institutions has caused coercion on the individual, discrimination against unmarried people and LGBT versus married couples, restrictions against public transportation in weekends, the wasting of tax money, and increasing tensions between religious and non religious people. Marriage, in our mind – is a private matter. We do not believe the government should be involved in this matter, we aim to promote civil marriage and eventually the abolition of marital registration and the closure of the Ministry of Religion.
We propose to cut down the length of service, to stop recruiting surplus soldiers and offer fair pay. There is no "equal burden" even within the IDF – some soldiers are recruited to perform high risk activity without any type of reward, some are recruited into redundant units which are notoriously inefficient. All official commissions appointed to inspect this issue (Ben Bassat, Shaeffer, Brodet) have established that military service must be shortened, and that this does not constitute a security danger. Regretfully the political establishment hasn't been able to promote such reform so we will work towards it. Beyond the shortening of military service, it is also necessary to make more and more positions in the IDF voluntary, professional and rewarded by fair pay. The IDF will be able to decide which soldiers will be exempt from service, in condition that all those serving shall receive pay according to his position.
No to the Biometric Database:
We oppose creating a biometric database in Israel – an initiative that will force the citizens of Israel to surrender biometric data to the government against their will. We oppose it especially in light of previous security breaches that exposed similar government databases that were also used maliciously. It is safe to assume that this database will also leak. Even without a security breach this database is vulnerable for abuse – Israel's criminal conviction rate is close to 100% – this casts a heavy shadow on the ethics of prosecution and investigative agencies that will have this database at their disposal. Everything that the database aims to achieve can be achieved by smart identification cards that do not invade individual privacy. We will promote this plan as an alternative to the database.
Maintaining our Digital Freedom:
Privacy is an inseparable part of a free society. We will resist any attempt by the government to spy on Internet traffic in Israel. We will promote the release of all government intellectual property for free public use – any and all information that is not classified . A government that is transparent to public scrutiny is less corrupt and more attentive to the will of the public.
Education – back to the community:
We favor returning education back to the community and allowing choice in education. In our mind an educational system that is managed by a community is more attentive to the needs of students and their parents than a centralized education system run by a government. We support a substantial and structural reform in the school system that will give autonomy to communities and schools, in contrast with the situation today where central planning is enforced on the schools by the ministry of education.
We will work to allow every parent his choice of education for his child. We will also give various schools more freedom in deciding on their curriculum – so to encourage diversity and pluralism as appropriate to each child's different needs. Instead of school budgets decided by city government officials we support the voucher system which allows each parent to decide which school receives the budget for their child and turn the parent from a nuisance to a client. We believe that competition between the schools will improve education, as it has done in Sweden where it is implemented and as is promoted by the Jewish tradition.
We will not allow teachers' unions to foil any more structural reforms in the failing Israeli school system.
The government of Israel has waged war against all gambling including Poker (the Poker Law) and a large number of other games of chance. This has caused this entire market to thrive, covertly, under the control of organized crime – supplying them with great reward courtesy of the government.
We see this as abject hypocrisy since there is a government gambling monopoly (Pais and Toto) which allow and even promote gambling. Furthermore, this attitude towards gambling prevents Eilat and other resort towns to join others in the world that offer Casino services, thereby hindering the development of tourism.
We will promote the responsible lifting of the ban on gambling, regulating the field transparently and efficiently. We will also promote the erection of casinos in Eilat as is appropriate for a resort town of its kind
Release prostitution from the grip of organized crime. Just like in the gambling sector, the "war against prostitution" caused prostitutes to hide from the law. This has forced sex workers to turn to pimps for protection. This situation is detrimental primarily for sex workers. We shall act to legalize and regulate prostitution benefiting the prostitutes’ living conditions and the ability of communities to assist them. Simultaneously with the regulation of legal prostitution, we will work towards greater enforcement against rapists and women traffickers.
Free the media and allow for more television channels and providers:
We will act to completely separate the press specifically, and the media as a whole, from the government. Media dependent on the very entity it should criticize is not capable of properly doing so. Any individual should be allowed to operate a television channel, with no need for government licensing or regulation. Any individual should be free to provide others with telephone and Internet services, without a license. The Ministry of Communications, the Second Authority for Television and Radio, the Council for Cable TV and Satellite Broadcasting, the Broadcasting Regulatory Comity and the Film Review Council must be shut down. The Television License must be cancelled, and public broadcast stations terminated. Broadcasting is not a role of the state.
We believe in lowering housing prices, returning land to the people, and simplifying construction procedures. There are two main reasons for the high cost of housing in Israel. First, the government controls roughly 93% of the land via a corrupt and cumbersome institution known as the Israel Land Administration. The small amount of building permits given by this body creates an artificial shortage in lands and high housing prices. We will act to return the land to its rightful owners- the people. We will promote the privatization of all Land Administration lands (aside from natural reservations, military and government facilities and infrastructures) by means of honest and open bidding. The second cause for high prices is a complex and irrational bureaucracy. The world bank ranks Israel 139th out of 180 in "dealing with building permits- falling behind of Algeria, Togo and Mozambique. When the paper work is un manageable, is the any wonder supply is low and prices are soaring? We will adopt the "Kav Yashar" plan for a comprehensive reform in building and planning procedures, bringing Israel to a western standard, and work to abolish the Land Appreciation Tax which brings in little revenue but causes great damage.
Free the market and allow real competition instead of government monopolies:
Liberating the market from strong players that prevent new competitors and innovation is the best way to fight high costs and unemployment. The source of monopolies and cartels in Israel is government legislation hindering the freedom of occupation. We will act to change the council system in Israeli agriculture- councils that dictate production quotas, prices and more. This includes the honey sector, dairy sector, olive sector, and others. We will also act to abolish monopolies such as the Nesher Israel Cement Enterprise, and privatization of government monopolies such as the Israeli Electric Corporation and the ports. Employees in these monopolies use threats of strike to receive exorbitant salaries in spite of the huge debts there employing companies are in (70 billion NIS in the case of the Electric Corporation). The Electric Corporation should be broken up into separate stations and publicly offered on the stock market. Similarly we will act for a comprehensive reform of Israel Railways. The ports must be broken to separate terminals- and sold in separate to allow competition between them. Foreign banks and insurance firms must be allowed to enter the Israeli market, and the establishment of new domestic banks must be made possible. We shall strive to make Israel a developed western economy, remove trade hindrances and raise the purchasing power of Israelis.
The Welfare State:
We believe in moving charity away from the National Insurance and into community driven organizations. The National Insurance Institute is a bureaucratic, wasteful and cruel organization that too often gives to those who are not in need and denies resources to those who do. It hurts not only those in need, but community charity organizations, by taking over their share of resources. Many times, community organizations offer solutions that are better suited for local needs and are also less wasteful and bureaucratic. We will act to increase the tax rebate, currently set at 35%, allowing taxpayers to donate to private non-profit organizations authorized by the government and we will ease the bureaucratic process to become an authorized non-profit organization. Being able to directly supervise the mutual aid organization his money is used for will allow the citizen to decide who deserves his money. Creating options for charity will develop a culture of community based mutual-assistance. Citizens will be able to see and take pride in the charitable activities their own money was used for. We will work to divert a substantial part of the National Insurance budgets to recognized charity organizations, leaving the National Insurance Institute to focus on a smaller number of social programs. We believe citizens know more about local problems than the government, and are able to choose charitable programs in a more informed and selective manner than the government. This will benefit those in need and reduce the number of people falsely claiming welfare, as they would receive less donations. We will also act to lower subsidies to healthy people capable of work, as well as reducing child-benefits and inflated "baby bonus" beyond the third child born.
Significantly reducing the tax burden:
Low taxation means more workplaces, higher salaries, lower prices and better life for all income levels. We will act to responsibly lower taxation, and at the same time reduce public spending and streamline public services. Our view is that government uses tax money less efficiently than the individual tax payer would have, had the money not been collected from him. Low taxation will allow for more enterprise, increase job creation and production, and so will increase the ability of citizens to help themselves and others. The current high level of taxation hurts the citizens, increases negative immigration, encourages a black market, increases prices and deters foreign investment.
We will also act to simplify the tax code. Israel has a over-complicated taxation system which includes tax wavers and benefits for different pressure groups and greats abnormalities in the economy. A simplified tax code is needed, as well as cancellation of all tax waivers – lowering the amount of resources spent on collection, lowering the motivation for tax evasion, and allow simple and non invasive taxing.
Releasing the market from the grip of the overpowered trade unions:
We will act for fair strike laws. The current laws that over-empower the worker unions have nothing to do with the right to strike. Fair unionization laws are important to the function of the market and the public sector. The phenomena of back to back strikes that paralyze the economy every few years is damaging to market stability, transforms Israeli citizens into hostages, and creates benefits to workers not according to their competence but according to their ability to do harm. It is unacceptable that striking workers are completely immune from breach of contract lawsuits, while they cause tremendous damage to the citizens of Israel. Ending this system of immunity will bring unions to consider the real costs of strikes and properly consider their use of strikes. Making unions less powerful will allow for a more efficient and reliable public sector, and increase the amount of jobs in the market.
As a small and open government is a precondition to good-governance, we will act to set a maximum number of ministers by Basic Law. We will act to limit the excessive powers of different government offices as well as abolish some needless ministries, and to merge others. We will also act to cancel the function of Minister without portfolio. We believe this is an important step towards efficient and open government, as well as towards reducing government cost and improving the separation of powers. Any significant deviation from a basic government structure which includes 6 offices: Finance, Internal Affairs. Justice, Defense, Internal Security, and Foreign Affairs is in our view an expression of government inefficiency and bureaucracy. Israel should put in place a constitution protecting civil rights and liberties.
Making Israel a free trade area:
Freedom of trade is a precondition for a strong economy in the modern age. We see trade limitations such as tariffs, VAT and anti-dumping duties as benefiting only to interest groups and harmful to the general population. We will act to abolish the protectionism of industries and pressure groups, and to gradually make Israel a free trade area. This means the gradual elimination of all tariffs, import quotas, import bans, and specific standardization by the Standards Institution for every product, including ones standardized by the EU or the USA.
Creating an attractive environment for businesses and lowering unemployment:
A flexible work market and respect to the freedom of contract will increase the wages of all workers. In the last decades Israeli governments, using populist excuses, have legislated absurd work laws that are most harmful to small businesses and the wages of their employees. This has brought unemployment levels of nearly 30% in many peripheral communities. We will oppose populist legislation act to abolish unneeded laws, while improving the protection of contacts. A flexible job market will make it easier for weaker parts of the population to join the work force, and make them more independent of government welfare. In the public sector we will bring a reduction of pay in failed companies that have inflated wages (such as the Electric Corporation), and abolish permanent employment which prevents the termination of incompetent civil servants.
Leading a responsible budgetary and monetary policy:
Balanced budgets, stable currency and free exchange rates are cornerstone of a healthy economic growth. We believe that a constantly low interest rate and deficits are not the way towards long term growth, and that they create irresponsible increases in national debt, corrosion of public savings, and distortions of the markets, especially the financial and real estate. We will promote a reform to limit the ability of the Bank of Israel to create inflation and perform billion dollar foreign exchange speculations using tax payer money, as swell as reduce the dependency of the market on the decisions of a small number of people. We will also work to create a constitutional measure that forbids a destructive policy of chronic deficits, by forcing the government to an automatic reduction of expense to reduce debt until it is eliminated.
Protect the environment and natural resources:
The ecosystem in Israel is deteriorating due to shot sighted and destructive policies. We will act towards a rational policy, one that protects the environment but does not contradict every act enterprise and development. We will work to implement a smart and sustainable environmental policy that will include long term economic incentives to ecoloigical conservation, and will not be dependent on political decisions that are often damaging.
The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and the Peace process:
Ale Yarok-The Liberal List will act to bring any peace agreement to referendum, believing that crucial and faithful decisions must be settled by direct democracy. We will support actions to protect the citizens of Israel, as we recognize protection against foreign aggression is the most basic function of the state.