Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Bridging the gap on natural growth
Seeing this article gave me an idea. Housing in Israeli settlements in Occupied Territory is cheap. That can be changed through tax policy. (Of course, this would hit some of the poor hardest, but in this case, I'm willing. Other solutions might well hit them harder.) I have no particularly strong views on natural growth. So let's first freeze what Israel is willing to freeze. Then tax what natural growth Israel is not willing to freeze. It doesn't have to be prohibitive, but should be significant. The money could go into a fund for eventually relocating settlers when borders are finally decided. Or, it could even go into a fund for the PA. Ideological settlers, who will be the hardest to relocate, would be put in a bit of a quandry, as they'd be actively supporting policies they don't like by living in the territories. Non-ideological settlers, who make up the vast majority of the settlers and who live in the larger settlement blocs where natural growth is a bigger (and more pragmatically driven) issue, would merely face a different set of constraints.