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Sep 16, 2009

Growing up to be an Araviah

My 5-yr old daughter said yesterday that she "wants to learn from the new neighbor how to build houses (we have a neighbor renting office space in the machsanim who is an engineer). Then, when I grow up, I can be an Araviah, because the aravim build our land and I want to build our land also."

10 comments:

  1. oh I can't wait till chaim ben shlomo gets his hands on this one.
    At lesat she didn't say that she wants to grow up to be a money chager because it's the Jews that make the world turn :)

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  2. Can you explain something to me. Why does Israel need cheap construction labor like Arabs and Thais? In my country, Australia, builders labourers are for the most part locals, and they earn good money, on average around $US3200-4000 per month, some skilled ones a lot more.

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  3. Aussie - in Israel, the laborers in construction are not paid well. The contractors and builders generally use cheap labor which is usually Arabs and foreign works such as from Thailand.

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  4. Oh, my. Not quite what the original Zionists had in my mind.

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  5. I know that, I'm asking why can we pay good money for it here, and you cannot there?

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  6. I could simply say that Jews dont generally want to do this type of labor.

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  7. To Aussie,

    I don't have an answer to your question, but I'd say that Australia is not the norm in this regard. Every proserous country has this problem. Germany was known for being hard working and efficient, and look at how many Turks and others are now there doing the dirty work. Likewise in Japan, also famous for it's work ethic, only there it's Koreans and others who do the dirty work.

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  8. Ausie -

    One of the reasons is that building in Israel is very labor-intensive, unlike many other countries where because of the cost of labor, it's more capital-intensive. The cause of this, at least in part, is the availability of a large pool of cheep labor, so the Kablanim have no incentive to use less labor-intensive methods to build - it's cheeper to just hire another worker to add to the project. If you ever see an Israeli building site, you'll note how much of the work going on is unskilled "grunt work", rather than semi-skilled or skilled craftmanship. Building with poured concrete and cement blocks as the primary materials only adds to this.

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  9. Thanks Anonymous, that makes a lot of sense. What we end up with, is that an Australia builders laborer is more productive, since he is better skilled and uses more advanced technology. He therefore gets paid more money. I guess this is a result of Israel's sad socialist legacy, something which in my opinion has resulted in many potential olim going elsewhere, like Canada and Australia.

    When do you think Israel is going the first world?

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