Wednesday, April 03, 2013

It's all about money

If you read the Charedi press it is patently clear that the current situation is all about money. The charedi world can only survive on government money, if the government turns off the cash machine the Charedi world will be forced to adapt.

Lets compare two 30 year olds, the first an Avreich learning in kollel married with 5 kids, the second being a Chiloni, single, working in hi tech.

I. Avreich 

Non Government Income 

Kollel stipend of 1800 shekel
The wife/mother works as a teacher/ganenet - 3400 shekel a month (the truth is that this money is coming from the government as well)
Other income - Night Kollel/Friday kollel - 400 shekel a month
Total Income: 5600 shekel a month

Taxes Paid

Income Tax - 0
Health Tax - ~200 shekel
Social Security - ~100 shekel
Property Tax - ~50 shekel
Total tax - 350 shekel (6%)

Government benefits Received

Child payments - ~900 shekel
Arnona (property tax) reduction - 90% - ~500 shekel
Guaranteed Income - ~1200 (Note: guaranteed income is only paid if the wife is not working, even so about 10,000 Avreichim are receiving this benefit).
Private Elementary Schools - 55% - 75% government support Yeshiva Ketana - 850 shekel ~ 1450 shekel a month
Total Benefits Received - ~3600

II. Chiloni

Income

Salary - 20000 shekel

Taxes Paid

Income tax - ~3800 (19%)
Health Tax - ~1000(5%)
Social Security Tax - ~1000 (5%)
Property tax - ~600 
Total Tax - 6400 (32%)

Government benefits Received

0

Here is the bottom line, the Avreich is getting more then 3000 shekel more then what he is putting in while the Chiloni is putting in almost 1/3 of his income and gets nothing tangible back. 

It gets worse for the Chiloni. Imagine he is a hard worker and gets a raise to 25000 shekel a month or gets a 5000 shekel bonus, sounds great, but he only gets to keep about half of the money, 46% goes to right to the government in taxes. 

This is why the Charedi world gets no sympathy when they cry about all the money that they will be losing. It is hard to feel sympathetic when you are getting nothing and in fact paying in a large portion of your income to the system. 

There are those who claim that the Charedi world pays more then their share of taxes, I don't see how, the numbers don't lie. Yes, the Charedim pay VAT like everyone else, but even there they pay less simply because they spend less. In addition a good part of the VAT that they pay is simply the government getting it's money back from the transfer payments that it gave them. If all you make is 5600 shekel a month then even if you spend every penny that comes out to 952 shekel in VAT. The Chiloni who is taking home more then double is spending most of it (~10000) and therefore paying more in VAT (1700). 

The bottom line is that a large percentage of the population feels that they cannot afford to subsidize those who want to sit and learn. Very few people have a problem with people sitting and learning, as long as they don't want the government to support them. If you want to sit and learn and be poor by choice, go ahead, but don't expect government support.

Updated on 4/4 with a note about guaranteed income

14 comments:

Adam Zur said...

To make a dime in Israel is very hard. I knew one fellow who tried it. This was back in the 80's with the inflation and 50% taxs that were part and parcel of the Left wing government that was around then. Remember that?
Well I can understand why people would want to sit in kollel and make more money than they would by working. But as you say this is not really much of a mitzvah. It is just a way to make money. and it is not really in accord with the Torah itself. In fact you might say it is a borderline aveira.

David said...

You are incorrect about one point. An avreich receives havtachat hachnasa (Guaranteed Income) only if his wife does not work (and he has a least three children and no car). So the income of an avreich whose wife doesn't work will be much less (subtract wife's income) 1800 + 3600 = 5400 (why is everything multiples of chai=18?), and when the wife works, subtract 1200.

Hamasig said...

There is so much wrong with your calculations here, it's hard to know where to start.

For example, Private Elementary Schools - 55% - 75% government support Yeshiva Ketana - 850 shekel ~ 1450 shekel a month

whereas a chiloni gets nothing.

Really? How about 100% government support?

bluke said...

Hamasig,
The difference is very simple. The Charedi schools are essentially private schools that do whatever they want. They get government money but the government has no control whatsoever of what is taught (or not taught). You can't have it both ways. If you want government money then you need to give the government a say in how it is spent. That is how it works in every other country in the world. In fact, in the US Yeshivas get no government money (that is why there is a tuition crisis) and still have to comply with the state curriculum.

There is 1 additional difference, Chilonim get married much later and have fewer kids. The example I gave was a 30 year old single Chiloni with no kids.

I would be happy to hear what else you think is wrong.




bluke said...

David,

You are right, just note that even though the conditions sound onerous, there are about 10,000 Avreichim getting the 1200 shekels avtachat hachnasa.

Hamasig said...

So if chiloni education receives hundreds of millions of shekels, that doesn't count as receiving anything, because the government dictates educational policy.

Anyway, your example is very poor, as you are not comparing like with like. Average chareidi with average chiloni (or average avreich with average non avreich), not specific chiloni who is the lowest type of receiver.

As regards educational policy, you can have it both ways. Money is distributed for education the same way as it is collected for education. Not as a government largess, or an exchange in return for values. It is to ensure that every child receives an education, and that money does not belong to anyone except the the citizens of the state of Israel, including chareidim. They pay for education and have a right to receive it. Chereidim don't agree with everything taught in chiloni schools, and chilonim don't have to like what gets taught in chareidi schools.

bluke said...

Hamasig,

Show me one other country that simply gives money to private schools and doesn't dictate in some way what must be taught. That is not the way it works in Europe (France, England, Belgium, etc.) and in the US Yeshivas get no money. In all of the countries that I listed all of the schools teach a government mandated secular studies curriculum.

Again, you can't expect the government to simply give money to schools and have no say whatsoever in what is taught.

I picked typical examples of 30 year olds. The 30 year old chilonim that I know (I work with them) are typically not married, or are newly married with no kids. The typical married 30 year old Avrech has 4-5 kids, that is simply reality.

In any case, the average chiloni has 2-3 kids, the average Charedi 5-6, therefore the average Charedi will receive much more since he has double the amount of kids.

Hamasig said...

Show me one other country that simply gives money to private schools and doesn't dictate in some way what must be taught.

So what? As long as the education is being conducted seriously and responsibly, and not just to by ice cream, it's nobody's business.

I picked typical examples of 30 year olds. The 30 year old chilonim that I know (I work with them) are typically not married, or are newly married with no kids.

They are not average (I don't know your line of work). Later they will get married and have kids.

In any case, the average chiloni has 2-3 kids, the average Charedi 5-6, therefore the average Charedi will receive much more since he has double the amount of kids.

But it's far more dramatic, and misleading, to say 0 shekels, than 2000 shekels.

bluke said...

Hamasig,

Here is a very simple challenge. Find me one other country in the world that gives money to private schools and the government has no say whatsoever in what is learned.

In my line of work (hi tech) this is average.

Hamasig said...

Here is a very simple challenge. Find me one other country in the world that gives money to private schools and the government has no say whatsoever in what is learned.

So what? If you're right, you're right, even if no-one does it. It you're wrong, you're wrong, even if everyone does it.

Hamasig said...

In my line of work (hi tech) this is average.

and you are living in a bubble.

bluke said...

Hamasig,

In other words you can't find a single example of government funding with no strings attached.

bwad said...

bluke,

Your calculations are out by almost 500 shekels for the avreich.

Since you are including
"Arnona (property tax) reduction - 90% - ~500 shekel" in the Government benefits Received section, "Property Tax" in Taxes Paid should be the full amount (~550).

As it is, it looks like he receives 450 shekels reverse arnona every month.

Eitan Dishi said...

God decides our money in the end. Just don't pick on any group.