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August 21, 2014 / 25 Av, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘communities’

Low Supply Driving Judea and Samaria Housing Prices Sky High

Saturday, August 17th, 2013

High demand and low supply characterize the housing market in various Judea and Samaria communities, Israel Hayom reported. In the newly built Leshem quarter of the Alei Zahav community, houses which sold for NIS 900,000 ($252,000) two years ago now sell for up to NIS 1.7 million ($477,000). Similar price spikes have been reported in Yakir, Etz Ephraim, Har Bracha, and other communities in Samaria.

In the last decade, the population of Gush Etzion has tripled, surpassing 20,000. The local council chief, Davidi Perl, said that for every Jewish community in Gush Etzion, an average of 15 families were hoping to be accepted as residents. Overall, 300 families are waiting to move into Gush Etzion.

Housing prices in Gush Etzion, meanwhile, over the last five years have skyrocketed by dozens of percentage points. A piece of land in the Gush Etzion community of Tekoa cost just NIS 50,000 ($14,000) only five years ago. Now, the starting price is NIS 350,000 ($98,000). Demand for housing is so high in Gush Etzion that in recent years, some towns there have begun collecting “entry fees” for prospective inhabitants.

Real estate prices have also risen dramatically in Ariel, doubling in the last three years. A four-room apartment that cost NIS 600,000 ($168,000) three years ago sells today for up to NIS 1.2 million ($336,000). A cottage that could have been had for NIS 700,000 ($196,000) then sells today for NIS 1.5 million ($421,000).

“It was only recently that we received construction permits, but we are still far off from meeting the minimum requirements in the city,” Ariel Mayor Eli Shviro said. “The demand is tremendous, but the supply is low.”

Israel recently announced plans for 1,200 new housing units in eastern Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria, a decision that was slammed by the United States due to concern over the fate of Israeli-Palestinian conflict negotiations. Secretary of State John Kerry, who led the efforts to renew negotiations, said Aug. 12 that the U.S. “views all of the settlements as illegitimate.” Those communities, however, are situated in an area that is considered to be subject to the result of Israeli-Palestinian final status negotiations.

Winning the Minority Vote

Tuesday, February 12th, 2013

After the 2012 Waterloo, Republican consultants retreated to some party boats and hotels, and began planning their comeback. Bereft of ideas, they took the media’s explanations for why they lost at face values. What they have delivered is a liberal’s eye diagnosis of why they lost and so they debuted a plan to win over Latinos with amnesty and to end their negative image with a new gentler look.

Mostly what they have proven is that they are even more clueless than they were a year ago.

Senator Marco Rubio seems like a nice guy, but if the Republicans are counting on him to deliver the Latino vote, they might want to take a closer look at his Senate win. While Rubio did indeed win the Cuban Latino vote, he only won 39 percent of the non-Cuban Latino vote. That’s the same Latino margin of victory as Rick Perry got. It’s the usual best score that Republicans get among Latinos.

Marco Rubio could be a guy named Mark Richardson for all the impact that he made among Latino voters. But that’s because the “Latino” vote is a ridiculous oversimplification. Latinos consist of Cubans, Puerto Ricans and Mexicans, to name just a few. And they don’t necessarily align.

Mayor Bloomberg ran against a Puerto Rican candidate and won the Mexican vote. Bloomberg may speak Spanish about as well as your Aunt Sally, but that didn’t really matter because he didn’t waste a lot of time telling stories about growing up poor in the slums of San Juan. Instead he worked with Mexican community leaders who were tired of being sidelined by Puerto Ricans, and advertised heavily on their radio stations and in their papers.

Race is certainly a factor, but it’s not the only factor. Most Black voters initially supported Hillary Clinton. If Herman Cain ran against Hillary Clinton in 2016, Clinton would beat him by a high margin. A Zogby poll shows Rubio beating Clinton among Latino voters, but how well that poll would hold up after Latino leaders have spent enough time getting the word out is another matter. Clinton beat Obama among Latino voters on Super Tuesday. Assuming that she won’t do the same to Rubio only because of his race is a risky bet.

There are two types of minority groups in the United States. Segregated and integrated. The more integrated a group becomes, the less of a bloc vote it is. A bloc vote is not simply a consistent pattern, it is the result of a segregated community that interfaces with the rest of the country through its leaders and local media. And those two interfaces are key.

It doesn’t really matter how many Latinos speak at the Republican National Convention or how many Republican senators sign on to Amnesty. These events will, for the most part, be processed through the filter of those community leaders and their associated newspapers and radio stations. Republicans imagine that they’re addressing Latinos, but aside from Univision appearances they mostly don’t even have access to them.

The percentage of the Latino vote that is accessible to Republicans largely comes from those Latinos who have integrated and are in the Middle Class. That is why the Republicans did so much better with the Latino vote in Ohio than Virginia. Median income and English language skills remain a fairly reliable predictor of the Republican vote.

Winning the minority vote is not simply about policy or diversity. That is an elementary lesson of the urban political machine that the Republican Party has bizarrely forgotten, even though it’s a lesson that goes back a century and a half in American politics. Diversity is not about finding binders of qualified candidates, but about elevating community leaders from minority groups who can deliver a share of the vote from their community.

It’s not pretty, but it is practical politics. Lincoln understood it and applied that methodology right down to the appointment of generals. The Democrats built an entire network of votes in every state by taking their urban political machine national. But the Republicans seem to think that it’s enough to have someone out there speaking Spanish. It’s a nice touch and the urban political machines used it. Mayor George B. McClellan, Jr., the son of General MacClellan, spoke a bewildering number of the languages that his constituents did. Mayor LaGuardia also juggled languages. But those are campaign tricks. They are not how the vote is delivered.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/daniel-greenfield/winning-the-minority-vote/2013/02/12/

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