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for Social & Economic Progress
an independent pro-market
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Winner of the 2005 Award for Institutional Excellence and the 2006 Templeton Award for Student Outreach
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The Jerusalem Post9 Aug ’11
David Lewis, the exceptional entrepreneur and philanthropist, and head of the Isrotel Group dies at 87
David Lewis, the exceptional entrepreneur and philanthropist, head of the Isrotel Group that put Eilat on the world tourist map, is dead at 87.
The Lewis family, and especially David’s wife, Ruth, a woman with a distinguished, kind presence, and David’s children and grandchildren have all enjoyed better, more meaningful lives because of David Lewis. So did the Jewish Community and the English people more generally, Israel and many individuals and institutions in both countries.
David was always a gentleman to the core of his being, a faithful Jew, a courageous and caring human being and modest to a fault.
I have been privileged to enjoy David’s friendship for many years.
My institute, The Israel Center for Social and Economic Progress has been a beneficiary of his largess. He did all he could to help us make Israel economically viable and prosperous.
We met whenever David visited Israel and could take time off from his many duties and preoccupations. There was not one meeting in which the conversation did not extend to the many interests of David’s, whether contemporary or historic, and that did not display his multifaceted and detailed knowledge and strong convictions and values, but above all his care for everything that touched his life, and his warm humanity.
Like his namesake, David was a king and a poet, a supreme leader in getting good works done, whether in business or in charity, a poet in his nuanced understanding of people, in his empathy for them, in the way he got involved in their life, always helping to make it better, to enrich it in many varied ways, material and spiritual.
David was a practical man; look at all that he has built, solidly, in times that were shifting and uncertain, often dangerous. Look at what he did for Eilat – a thriving city now, at the bottom edge of Israel that David transformed from a backwater, struggling to survive, into a gem on Israel’s tourist map. Loot at his pioneering enterprise, the sparkling spa he built on the Carmel range and his newest love, the unique inn “Bereshit” (with its Biblical connotations) on the rim of the majestic Grand Canyon of Israel, the Ramon Crater.
David was a visionary – one would hesitate to call him a dreamer – because unlike even the best of dreamers, he has managed to mostly translate his visions into good works.
And there are so many of them, too many to enumerate because the list is so long and because nothing would have embarrassed David more than praise for his works.
So please forgive us David if after you left us we managed to embarrass you, but it could not be avoided. It is our duty of love to talk in praise of extraordinary people, to hold them up as an example for all and as role models for the young.
Many have loved you deeply, David, because you were the kind of man who evoked love, not only for himself, but for humanity, that you represented so honorably and magnificently.
The Jerusalem Post30 Jun ’15
Israel’s last elections proved how right David Ben-Gurion was when he said that, in Israel, whoever does not believe in miracles is not a realist.
PJ Media20 Jun ’15
The security challenges facing Israel obscure other deep concerns about the viability of Israel’s economic system.
The Jerusalem Post7 Jun ’14
Unless the laggard Israeli economy is reformed soon, its problems—including its morally debilitating corruption—may threaten its future.
Israel Hayom15 May ’14
What does it say about Israeli society and the system of government when a prime minister is convicted of taking bribes?
Israel Hayom23 Feb ’14
What kind of education should it offer and at what cost?
The Jerusalem Post9 Jan ’14
The productivity of Israeli workers is only two-thirds that of Americans, and their salaries are much lower.
The Jerusalem Post11 Jul ’13
As he completes an exceptionally difficult 8-year tour of duty during a worldwide financial crisis, Stanley Fischer has achieved a unique status.
The Weekly Standard7 Jun ’13
When Israel finally discovered a bonanza of natural gas about five years ago everyone was happy. But then fierce arguments broke out—and rightly so.
The Weekly Standard22 Apr ’13
The economic future of Israel now rests in the hands Netanyahu, Lapid and Bennet. will they succeed in fulfilling the most difficult and complex mission of liberating Israel’s economy?
Israel Hayom2 Jan ’13
The Israeli government could eradicate poverty by breaking the monopolies and spurring competition.
The Jerusalem Post7 Dec ’12
Our socialist and statist heritage bred our inefficient system. But foreign aid and remittances were serious enablers. The struggle against political and economic concentration could finally permit Israelis to overcome this destructive heritage.
Israel Hayom8 Nov ’12
The time to prepare the reforms is now, so that after the Israeli elections, the prime minister can immediately devote his time to moving them forward.
The Financial Times21 Jun ’12
Israel Hayom6 Jun ’12
To grapple with the impending crisis, Israel’s government must improve the nation’s competitiveness.
The Jerusalem Post7 May ’12
The Wall Street Journal3 May ’12
Reform-minded Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is stymied by bureaucrats and monopoly tycoons.
Middle East Quarterly30 Mar ’12
As the high hopes for a brave new Middle East fade rapidly, Western policymakers must recognize that promoting market economics and its inevitable cultural changes are far more critical to the region’s well-being than encouraging free elections or resolving the Arab-Israeli conflict.
The Jerusalem Post17 Feb ’12
The choice is between an efficient, growth-inducing market economy or a welfare state, meaning a huge government that actually harms the poor and inhibits prosperity.
The Jerusalem Post25 Oct ’11
Aversion toward the rich has had strong roots in Zionism since its early leaders embraced Marxist practices.
Is capitalism in crisis? Of course.
The Jerusalem Post10 Aug ’11
The tent-dwellers’ revolt calls for the enforcement of ‘the will of the people’ (like all autocrats). It refuses to rely on Democracy.
The Jerusalem Post20 Jul ’11
Although MKs appear concerned over rising costs, it was they who allowed this injustice to occur in the first place.
The Jerusalem Post28 Jun ’11
Who is to blame for the shameful situation in which millions of Israeli workers – who earn about half what American workers earn – have to pay double for goods?
The New Republic19 May ’11
A Middle East peace strategy that could actually work.
The Jerusalem Post15 Mar ’11
Israel needs to slash its state budget by as much as possible if it wants a chance at fighting waste and corruption.
The Jerusalem Post9 Mar ’11
Too little attention has been paid to how Egypt’s socialist past and welfare-state present shaped the current rebellion.
The Jerusalem Post7 Feb ’11
The Herzliya Conference has become an important international event, but one central issue is absent: Israel’s debilitating economic concentration.
The Jerusalem Post22 Jan ’11
It’s highly unlikely that government can ever learn to make long-term plans and execute them efficiently.
The Jerusalem Post23 Dec ’10
How can one dare compare narrow-minded religion with the all-embracing faith of universality and equality that is socialism?
The Jerusalem Post1 Dec ’10
Many of the social and economic troubles we are experiencing are due to the public’s lack of understanding of the need for economic literacy.
The Jerusalem Post17 Oct ’10
The PM’s courageous decision to tackle economic concentration was misrepresented by several of our media publications—owned of course by tycoons.
The Wall Street Journal8 Oct ’10
Economic concentration hurts the country’s viability and the chances for peace.
The Jerusalem Post4 Oct ’10
A damaging ethos of ‘welfarism’ and distributive politics has come to dominate not only academia but our cultural, military and even our business elites.
The Jerusalem Post19 Aug ’10
The reformers must know the importance of the reform’s success both for Israel and for their careers, and what damage they will incur if it fails.
The Jerusalem Post13 Jul ’10
Kagan’s admiration for Justice Aharon Barak’s philosophy may have revealed her own predilection for radical judicial activism.
The Jerusalem Post30 May ’10
We must dismantle the oligarch-owned monopolies that impoverish the Israeli consumer and choke our economy.
The Wall Street Journal18 May ’10
The OECD’s invitation to Israel is a “seal of approval” but the country still needs more reforms.
The Jerusalem Post10 Feb ’10
The world’s astonishment at Israel’s response to the Haiti disaster is insulting. What we saw there was Israel’s true face.
The Jerusalem Post10 Jan ’10
Individual initiative and freedom are essential for creativity—in hi-tech as in all other spheres.
The Jerusalem Post14 Oct ’09
As far as Rose Friedman was concerned, public kudos did not matter that much. She persisted in being a rose, no matter what.
The Jerusalem Post22 Sep ’09
Lasting peace must grow from the bottom up, from an “economic peace process” that proves what advantages peace has to offer on a daily basis. It cannot come from signing peace agreements with radical and corrupt entities propped up by corrupting Western handouts.
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