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Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Bill Clinton to Receive $500,000 for Speech at Peres Academic Center Gala Dinner

As reported by The Times of Israel (

"The Peres Academic Center has paid former US president Bill Clinton $500,000 for a headlining appearance in Rehovot on June 17. Clinton will feature at a reception, and then do a one-hour speech and Q&A session.

Guests were last week sent invitations requiring them to stump up NIS 3,000 (just over $800) apiece to attend the gala dinner, and thus to help cover his fee, but that requirement has now been canceled. "

Yes, I'm nauseous. Chew on the following information from a recent Jerusalem Post article ( concerning poverty and the gap between the rich and the poor in Israel:

"Israel has the highest poverty rate among OECD countries, according to a report released by the 33-nation Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development on Wednesday.

The data revealed that Israel’s poverty rate stood at close to 21 percent of the population in 2011, compared to the 11.1% average among the rest of the members.

In addition, Israel was ranked fifth with regard to income gaps after Chile, Mexico, Turkey and the United States."

Also consider the following information from a December 2012 article in The Jerusalem Post (

"According to the data, which was presented at a conference in Rishon Lezion on Monday morning, half of the children of impoverished families are forced to work today – a sharp increase compared to 2011, when this figure was only 19 percent. In general, one out of five Israeli children have had to drop out of school for this reason.

Ten percent of children of impoverished families have also begged for money on the streets over the past year due to difficult economic situations at home. In 2011, only 3% of children did so.

Overall, 27% of children in Israel have experienced full days without food this year, up from 21% in 2011.

Economic hardship also seems to be taking a toll on the children’s education.

According to the report, 21% of needy families had to send their children to boarding school in 2012, an increase of 23% compared to 2011.

Also, one-fifth of those families reported that in order to be able to purchase basic food products, they had to give up on proper education for their children."

A cool half million for Wild Bill to speak at a time when Israeli children are suffering in this manner? "Be'teavon" (Hebrew for "good appetite") to all those who attend this "gala dinner."


  1. It's obvious that these politicians are so out of touch, they just don't care what people think anymore. The following comment to the The Times of Israel article sums it best:
    "We'll be returning our box to JNF empty, except for a note that says, "Go ask Bill; he makes more than we do."

  2. No way the JNF can spin this even if the $500,000 is going to be recycled from the Clinton foundation to spread Israeli agricultural/medical technology, and even if THAT is what Peres wanted as his birthday gift.


  3. The JNF emailed me back with a spin citing Politico (we never were involved! Thank you for your support!) that has already been contradicted by a different spin reported by YNET news (we changed our mind!)

    Lucky the JNF is less interesting than the rest of the news this week.