Angus Reid Global Monitor
April 30, 2009 - 12:00am

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) - A third of Israelis appear satisfied with their country’s direction right now, according to a poll by Keevoon and the Konrad Adenauer Foundation. 33 per cent of respondents feel this way, up 17 points since 2007.

Conversely, 46 per cent of respondents believe things in Israel are going in the wrong direction, down 20 points in two years.

In February, Israeli voters renewed the Knesset. The Likud party, led by former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, secured 27 seats in the legislature. The far-right Israel Our Home, the Labour party, the International Organization of Torah-observant Sephardic Jews (Shas), United Torah Judaism, and the Jewish Home joined Likud in a coalition. On Mar. 31, Netanyahu was sworn in as prime minister.

Since 2007, defaults on so-called subprime mortgages—credit given to high-risk borrowers—in the United States caused volatility in domestic and global financial markets and ultimately pushed the U.S. economy into a recession. A recession is defined as two consecutive quarters of negative growth. The crisis has affected the global financial and credit systems.

On Apr. 23, the Israeli government presented its economic plan. Israeli finance minister Yuval Steinitz declared: "We’ll take courageous measures to halt the slowdown and the increase in unemployment, and to boost growth in the near future, although this will not happen immediately, but within a year or two, so that we’ll already see renewed strong growth."

Labour lawmaker Ophir Paz-Pines criticized the proposal, saying, "Instead of a real emergency plan, Netanyahu and Steinitz are presenting a visionless plan strung together by words and hot air. This plan mocks the public’s intelligence and is a false presentation, meant to throw sand in the eyes of the public—both employers and employees."


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