11/04/2012

Comments on the Globes Interview with Moshe Feiglin

This interview with Feiglin is fascinating on many levels. A few comments are in order:
1) I think his views on non-Jewish citizens of the State of Israel are simply horrifying. He argues here that it's not racist to want to make them second class citizens because deep down they know that they're second class citizens.
2) I am extremely wary of someone - anyone - who confuses "my ideas about Judaism" with "Judaism." It's one thing to disagree with R. Elyashiv or R. Ovadiah on some issue within Judaism. It's another to imply that their views are not really the "Jewish" view.
3) I am in almost complete agreement with him about education: parents, not ministries, should have control over a kid's education, and vouchers would be excellent. The one place I part company is on the issue of a core curriculum. Free public education is predicated on the idea that it will make more productive citizens, and thus it is legitimate to condition funding on the teaching of content that will indeed accomplish that goal.
4) He seems to be an advocate of "compassionate conservatism", in which case the interviewer's invocation of Ayn Rand was pretty stupid.
5) I'm not sure how he squares his economic libertarianism with his views on unrestricted school vouchers. I can understand a perspective that wants to completely abolish public funding of schools. I can understand an argument that only core subjects should be publicly funded, and that parents should pay for discretionary education. I can even understand (but strongly oppose) a state that attempts to completely control all aspects of education. I cannot understand a position that is in favor of public funding of education but opposed to any sort of governmental regulation of how that money is spent. That's the worst kind of welfare statism, and completely inconsistent with everything else Feiglin says.
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