Tuesday, June 1, 2010

The flotilla fiasco

First, let me say, that I object to the blockade on Gaza. I don't think it ever had a chance to achieve its goal (whatever that was), it did not do anything to free Gilad Shalit, to destabilize the Hamas or to prevent smuggling of weapons into the Gaza strip.

Second, it is now clear (to me at least) that the flotilla was highjacked by 50-100 jihadists who between them and the words "humanitarian" and "civil rights" there is no common ground. These are people who set out to clash, as violently as possible with any Israeli intervention, which they did. I don't mourn their death. This is something that honest leftist and peace activist should deal with and consider for future such actions.

Third, my main anger (not disappointment as I never had any expectations) is from the Israeli goverment. There is a saying in Hebrew that a wise person does not enter places that a clever person knows how to get out of. Israel does not have the privilage of being only clever. The neighbourhood is too rough, volatile, nervous and dangerous for the Israeli government not to be smart. Sadly, this one has proved that it is not even clever but darn right stupid.

The blockade, imposed for months by Israel and by Egypt, the breaking of which was the declared goal of the flotilla, has all but ended yesterday when Egype announced and then acted by opening the Rafah crossing for 12 hours and saying that it will remin open for the unforeseeable future.

Israel's situation is significatnly worse off than before the interception on all fronts. Yesterday, in the Knesset Committee for Foreign and Security Affairs, Meir Dagan, the head of the Mossad, said that Israel is becoming an liability for the US, instead of being an asset. Israel is quickly finding itself isolated, ostracised, condemned its allies.

These are all things that a wise government, which had all the time in the world to prepare for the foltilla, should have considered, deliberated and finally reached a decision. If it did consider all the possibilities and decided to act as it did it is a dangerous government that is weakening instead of strengthening Israel. If it did not consider these then it is incompetant and dangerous as well. In both cases it should be replaced. In fact, no one will pay any personal price (except for some soldiers who got injured) and things will continue to get worse.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

ERROCA Eyeware

What can you say when this Israeli sun glass company produces this tasteless ad?? What is the message? What are they trying to convey to their customers? Do their customers understand this message? Do they care?

Nothing in it really surprises me. Green issues carry far less weight in Israel than in other developed and developing countries. The "Matzav" (Situation), the Israeli - Palestinian/Arab/rest of the world/anyone who is not Jewish, conflict has always been the key argument against doing anything that can improve the standard of living of Israelis. Thus environment is very far on the agenda of Israelis as is consumer protection, education, social network etc. This is also very convenient for successive Israeli governments who keep instilling an existential fear in their citizens. Sadly, FDR's quote: "the only thing to fear is fear itself", is not taught in Israeli schools.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Introducing Soap Concepts LLC - Click here

Something about the story that I picked off a Tweet about Soap Concepts caught my attention. Its a story and a business that combines so many things I like and support. BioDiesel from used cooking oil (rather than cultivated crops), using a byproduct of the process (glycerin), sustainability, entrepreneurialship, as well as some semi-concpiratorial facts about why our commercial soaps don't contain glycerin any more (but do contain some nasty chemicals).

The quality is far from perfect but it's my first attempt and it will improve (intro and outro included).

I'd like to thank Telly Concepcion and Eric Layton for their availability and want to wish them a super success in launching the Gator Glyss soap.

Feedback is welcome.

There is no time to lose - there is everything to win!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

My first podcast...

is facing some problems. Yesterday, Sunday, January 2nd, 2010, I interviewed Eric Layton and Telly Concepcion, founders of Soap Concepts LLC. Soap Concepts produces soap made of glycerin that is a byproduct in the biodiesel industry. Using used cooking oil from the University of Florida eateries and essential oils produced from citrus peels used to make juice on campus for 60,000 students, this sustabinable soap is raising awarness to the importance of biodiesel, contributes to the revenue stream of biodiesel plants, is wholly natural without chemicals and promotes sustainable thought and living.

Check out their website and I hope to have the podcast up and running within a day or two.

There is no time to lose - there is everything to win!