Our Federal Write In Absentee Ballots didn’t arrive in the mail or via e-mail as we had requested last June. So we went online to OverseasVoteFoundation.org and downloaded our ballots.
I tried to mail them yesterday but at 10:15 when I pulled a ticket at the post office there were 80 people ahead of me! So this morning, after only 3.5 hours of sleep because I was up until 3 a.m. blogging (the post times that show up are Central time because that’s where the server is located), I dragged myself into the shower and off to the post office. It paid off because Yisrael pulled #008 and they were currently serving #996!
We only had a 15 minute wait 🙂 It cost 69 shekels to send it via the Express Courier Service, but that was the only way to send it with a tracking number that I can follow at the Israel Post web site.
I’m always discouraged to vote in an election when I don’t have overwhelming confidence in any of the candidates and find myself selecting the least of the evils. 🙁 Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think John McCain is a bad option, he just has failed to WOW me. A vote for Barak Obama, on the other hand, is a ticket to the gas chambers in my humble opinion.
I urge any Jew who feels compelled to vote for him to be sure your family’s passports are up-to-date and you have enough money socked away to pay for plane tickets for your entire family (and maybe some friends too) for a quick exit.
Writing me off as an alarmist? Thank God I didn’t have any relatives that I know of who refused to leave Germany while the opportunity existed. However, I do know many of you did lose family and many of you who are children of holocaust survivors – and the terrible toll it has taken on you and them. Think about your children and grandchildren. Wouldn’t it be best to come home while the gates are wide open and welcoming?
A while back I posted a link to the Absorption Basket booklet to give you an idea of how badly the State of Israel wants to save you. Let’s take a look at the economics, shall we?
* Free plane tickets (current value approx. $2000 each)
* Sal Klita payments for a couple or family = 30,100 shekels, singles between 15,789 and 24,937 (depending on your age) over an 8 month period.
* Supplemental Child Benefits (per child): 9,338 for child newborn to 4; 6,202 for children 4 to 18; 8224 for 18 to 25; and if you have 6 or more members in your family you receive an extra 4308.
That adds up to 65488 NIS (approx. $18700) for a family with 4 children – 2 in each of the school aged groups. Considering that tuition is little to nothing, if you’re like we were you’ll be saving thousands per month and might actually afford to live on that sal klita for about 6 months without employment.
* Pre-K through High School Education is quite inexpensive – we went from $11k per year to less than $1k and now that Yisrael is in the school that fits him best he’s receiving a great education plus government provided ulpan and tutoring assistance.
* 500 hours of free ulpan for each adult family member and several hundred per child depending upon their age.
* Heavily subsidized college education for college-age students making aliyah.
* I know many of you have concerns about your children serving in the military, well did you know that they have the option of doing National Service (e.g., helping out in schools, hospitals, etc.) instead?
* Assistance with finding employment and/or starting a business.
* Bonus programs for medical professionals.
* Free Basic Health Insurance for 6 months and very reasonably priced supplemental insurance (ours is costing us less than 150 NIS per month and the prescription costs are 1/3 the price we were paying for the same medications in the US).
Refer to the Ministry of Immigrant Absorption website for more benefits and additional information.
The political climate could swing in the wrong direction (chas v’sholom) if you aren’t here to vote in the next Israeli election. The time to come home is NOW! If you have even remotely considered making Aliyah, please don’t wait until it’s too late – if the liberals achieve more power here the gates may close to you in deference to their desire to bring in more “open-minded” (i.e., non-Torah observant) people.