Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Updates: Moni v. Transparency International and Israeli Elections

I’m running off to teach, but I stopped at home and found that there were a couple updates which needed posting.

First, the office manager and Transparency International – Germany came out with a public statement about the issue of Moni’s blog. In it, she indicates that Transparency International has decided not to continue legal action against Moni. "We want to go back to doing our work", the office manager said (sorry I don’t have a name, the German is tough for the translation engine).

At this point, Moni and her lawyer have not been contacted by the company to assure that the lawsuit is off, but both hope they are out of the woods. Moni says “Still a little uneasy about believing it just by this source - but I think it's true!” Congratulations Moni, I’m glad the threat is over, but I do hope that they contact you to confirm that you have nothing to worry about, and who knows, maybe even apologize? Heaven forbid!

And in the other story I reported on recently, Israel project that Kadima will indeed win the elections in Israel today, probably gaining between 29-32 seats, as opposed to 20-22 seats for Labor, and a meager 11-12 seats for Likud (sorry Bibi). Even Yistrael Beiteinu pulled in more seats than likud, it appears, grabbing 12-14 Knesset seats. A large center blog has emerged with 62-66 seats, meaning an endless number of coalitions could form, including many possibilities that exclude Kadima.

Well, perhaps not endless possibilities. The right-wing block of LIkud, NRP, Yisrael Beiteinu, Shas, and United Torah appear to have earned around 50 seats, 11 short of the amount needed to block a Kadima government. But don’t be surprised to see that block working with a group like the pensioners, who appear to have earned a wopping 8 seats.

Votes are not final, and official tallies probably won’t be available until sometime tomorrow. However, the tally that is official is that voter turnout was a meager 57%, leading to some questions as to the legitimacy of the election. How valid can the results of an election be when the party with the least votes would not need the majority of the unregistered votes to surpass the party who retained the most votes?

Not understand what I mean? Well start with Kadima, the winner, who, in retaining 29-32 seats received approximately 652,000 of the 2,565,000 votes. Compare them to United Toray Judaism, which only received I mild 6 seats, or 128.250 votes. Well, with approximately 1,935,000 votes uncast, and UTJ only 523,750 votes behind Kadima, if there were a runoff between the two parties, there is a strong possibility that UTJ takes that runoff (anyone want the probabilities? Just finished the GMATs, I can do that junk). And the probability of Kadima losing such a runoff increases with each party that received more seats than UTJ.

The point is clear: Kadima has shown no majority approval here, and building a coalition will be extremely difficult as a result. We can only hope the country wont suffer as a result.

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Posted by Scottage at 3:49 PM / | |