While the collapse of the Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem continues to resonate in newspaper headlines and newscasts alike, there have been reports in the last few days of port workers in Ashdod and Haifa registering en masse for the Likud Party. According to these reports, the goal is to apply pressure on the Likud minister of transportation, Yisrael Katz, to put a halt to a plan to establish private ports in Israel.
Ostensibly, there is no connection between the financial crisis facing the hospital and the forceful struggle of the port workers. The truth is, however, that both cases are symptomatic of the same disease now plaguing the Israeli economy: Public organizations or semi-public organizations — as in the case of Hadassah, the electric company, health insurance providers and the Israel Broadcasting Authority — are run inefficiently by powerful interest groups that are not subject to any real oversight. Enormous systems that rely on public moneys are terrorizing the political system.