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Qatar will soon overtake us, but Menachem Ben insists that we remain ignorant

In an opinion piece published a few days ago in Ma'ariv and on the NRG website, the commentator Menachem Ben comes out against the expected reform of the bonus system in the matriculation exams in which credit will be given for entering universities for the eight core subjects

Studying mathematics. From the Mount Mary College website
Studying mathematics. From the Mount Mary College website

In an opinion piece published a few days ago in Maariv and on the NRG website, the commentator Menachem Ben comes out against the expected reform of the bonus system in the matriculation exams. Recently it became known that the committee of heads of universities decided to change the way of calculating matriculation exams for admission to universities. The reform will take effect in two years. The basic subjects, on which the bonuses will be given, will be mathematics, English, chemistry, physics, biology, literature, the Bible and history.

Today, one can choose to study for five matriculation units out of 123 subjects, including art, cinema, and more, and the universities were forced to give an equal score to each subject studied in five units. Now more weight will be given to the eight compulsory subjects.

For some reason, Ben, who cares for the sensitive soul of the Israeli youth, does not mention the subjects of literature, the Tanach, and history, as subjects that are not good to encourage, but he is angry that the students are required to study the boring mathematics studies that no one will use in the future, and he also takes care of the subjects of physics and chemistry, which he claims only A minority of students are able to understand them.

Well, there are some problems with your thesis, firstly only that minority access them to five units, so should this minority be suppressed even more? Second, there are many professions more important to the future of the Israeli economy than theater studies (and I love theater, and I purchased a subscription to one of the theaters in Tel Aviv so I have no problem in principle with theater), for example advanced computer programming, which is important for those who want to reach high-tech.

The Science and Technology Committee of the Knesset will soon hold a discussion on the case of canceling the bonuses for studying computer and science subjects in universities. This, after, as was first published exclusively in People and Computers, the university presidents' committee unilaterally decided to gradually cancel the bonuses for matriculation grades that were given until now to high school students, graduates of 4 and 5 units in computer science, who enrolled in these studies.

The website People and Computers reports that the cancellation of the bonuses was discovered by chance by the IT education coordinators, following a circular issued last summer by the outgoing CEO of the Ministry of Education, Dr. Shimshon Shoshani. In the document, which was published by the board of heads of universities and approved by the Minister of Education, a series of recommendations for changes in bonuses appeared, but the computer and science subjects were omitted from it, without any reason or explanation.

If Menachem Ben had lived in the US, he could have integrated well into the Tea Party movement. He is known for his overall anti-scientific approach, something Gabi Avital style. Such people should not determine the future of Israeli science.
First is Deniers of warming ("Sorry for the stupid question, but how is it that half the world is freezing... and the scientists keep talking about warming that is supposedly caused by humans? Where are the greenhouse gases when we need them? Maybe the scientists messed up a bit again, and what they said was heat, is actually cold?")
Second, he has been denying evolution for many years http://www.ynet.co.il/articles/0,7340,L-3537299,00.html ("What is called "Darwin's theory" is nothing but absolute nonsense that does not stand up to any A test of minimal logic. By the way, anyone who reads Darwin's "Origin of Species" (and I read large parts of it) will understand that Darwin himself treats his entire theory of evolution as a theory only)
See also my previous comment on the subject.

And he also denies AIDS (""It's not me who says there is no AIDS. It's a group of very senior scientists in the US who have been asserting for many years that the AIDS virus is a charlatan invention that did not exist and was not created. What is called the 'AIDS epidemic' is nothing but a series of old diseases that do not exist There is nothing in common between them. Shouldn't you at least hear them?")

The great Ottoman Empire fell because its sultans stopped investing in technology (their army remained technologically unchanged for about 300 years) because they thought they were such a powerful power that they now had to vacate to delve into religion (at least that's what the guide told me when I toured the Tufakfi Palace in Istanbul, when it's still possible was to get there).

The entire education system suffered from 20 years of degeneration and the universities suffered a lost decade as a result of the cuts since the era of Bibi as finance minister. At the same time, Israel is losing its place as the only scientific power in the Middle East. We have heard many times about the academic successes (including in several publications) of the Iranians, as well as about the university established in Saudi Arabia with an investment of 10 billion dollars. Now there is another source of concern. The journal Nature reports (October 28, 2011)
Because the universities in the Gulf countries are developing, for example, the branch of Texas A&M University in Qatar began awarding degrees to its graduates this month, for the first time since it was established in 2003, and as a step towards becoming an independent university. This university is only part of a huge campus known as the "Education Campus" in Doha which, together with other campuses in the Gulf countries, currently host 50 branches of Western universities, these universities attract many researchers who receive opportunities to advance their research.

The governments of these countries support the universities and subsidize them and in return receive skilled personnel in the fields of engineering, medicine, and business administration.

"Science is given priority in the Gulf countries that are looking forward to an era when oil will run out, both Dubai and Abu Dhabi have made a decision to become a knowledge-based country by 2030. Both Qatar and the United Arab Principalities have announced the establishment of national agencies to finance scientific projects.

We are already a knowledge-based company today, but instead of moving forward and maintaining a gap with Iran and the Gulf countries, we are retreating and letting them overtake us. But apparently Menachem Ben is not interested because in any case Darwin is taught in the universities and researched to his dismay the consequences of global warming.

16 תגובות

  1. From a completely personal knowledge: when Menachem Ben's son fell ill with a serious mental illness, the man refused to hospitalize his son and stated that he had enough knowledge to take care of him himself and thus caused him serious harm.
    It's a shame you bothered to refer to Menachem Ben. The man is strange and unworthy of attention. Unless he is used as an example of the whole phenomenon of role models and charlatans with zero knowledge who fill every good part on radio and television.
    There is no lack of rabbis, office bearers whose mouths are produced by "Margaliot", ministers and members of Knesset whose every sentence puts me to shame personally, CEOs and directors whose mouths every member of the culture finds appalling.

  2. Menachem Ben?!
    Father, are you feeling well? After all, any intelligent person can understand that the Lord's mind is disturbed.
    If he is our estimate...the state of the nation is doubly bleak.

  3. About twenty years before the end of the second millennium I had a feeling or a hope that the world was marching towards enlightenment and progress. In the first decade of the new millennium, reality hit me. During the book week, the New Age stands fill many meters of tables and the science books have to be searched with tweezers. In the progressive USA, about 45% (!) of the population do not accept the theory of evolution and believe in intelligent design by a higher power. The average level of the engineers who reach industry and research institutes is decreasing (and I say this as someone who has interviewed hundreds of young engineers in the last decade).
    All of this is caused by narrow-minded people like Menachem Ben and his ilk, by the great power of the ultra-Orthodox and by the system of government in Israel that forces the government to form illusory coalitions that require huge tax payments and huge concessions to the religious parties instead of investing in massive technological education and universities.
    Despite all this, and the disavowal of the ultra-orthodox and the majority of the population who do not want or cannot engage in science and engineering - does not prevent them (to put it mildly) from using all the best in technology. Everyone is happy to use smartphones, computers, internet, cars, airplanes, electrical appliances at home and much more. It doesn't interest them at all that engineers and researchers whose wings they want to clip are responsible for all of this, without exception!
    Regarding the Gulf countries, the expectation about 30 years ago was that oil would be enough until 2020 or 2030. I hoped that the Arabs would continue to rely on oil and when it runs out or when cheap alternative energy sources appear - they will return to the desert and cease to be an influential body in the world. Unfortunately, they have received wisdom and they see the future very well, which is why they invest so much in technological education.

  4. First, the reform of the Ministry of Education is worth nothing as long as the Ministry of Education does not take care of professional teachers. Currently, high school teachers are at a very poor level. Therefore the parents are forced to pay for private tutors and the students come to the university at a low level.
    Here are two articles on the subject:

    http://www.haaretz.co.il/news/education/1.1535535
    and also:

    http://www.themarker.com/news/1.1536334

    Secondly, it is important that the students are exposed to a wide spectrum of subjects in high school: both science, literature and art and theater. Not everyone turns to science and it is important that there are those who go to art and theater. Otherwise we will be a degenerate and backward society. Why don't you go to the plays? You don't go to museums? You are going! Who will create the shows for you?... A company includes all areas. Therefore the problem is not the reform but the problem is unprofessional high school teachers. They bring in a teacher who does not have a bachelor's degree in mathematics and he teaches mathematics. Then the Ministry of Education tends to blame the students and their level just like a dancer blames the floor.

  5. withering
    Two main factors decrease the number of births
    1. Reduction of infant and child mortality, and this is because it is possible to invest in one or two offspring whose chances of survival are high.
    2. The mother's education and her employment options.

    Bill Gates in his impressive philanthropic activity understands the consequences of the population explosion on the planet. And it seems to me that he is involved in finding a vaccine for malaria.
    You can find at TED a number of wonderful lectures by Bill Gates and also lectures by various experts on the subject of world demography.

  6. Ori Sh.
    You wrote: "Vaccines in the third world that in the long run will reduce births" (?)

    If that's what it implies, it doesn't sound good... I guess I don't understand what you meant, can you explain?

  7. Not only .
    The Kyoto Convention, among other things, deals with wage agreements for excess carbon emissions. In view of the growing need for energy in countries such as China and India, as well as parts of Africa, such agreements are destined to fail. Most likely the ones who will benefit from the treaty are corporations who have already estimated the profits from the trade in the matter in the billions. On the other hand, if they invest the billions earmarked for reducing carbon emissions in better alternatives such as alternative energy research, vaccines in the third world which in the long run will reduce births, and ground engineering such as painting cities white and planting a trillion trees. The benefit will be real and better than dubious trade agreements.

  8. Avi ,
    The Kyoto treaty is doomed to failure not only because of the Republicans but mainly because of human nature.
    I recommend the film The Unsettling Truth that appears on the Yes Docu website - and the alternative ways to fight against warming.

  9. Answers to Uri S.
    1. No one is canceling the humanistic studies, it is a fact that their basic subjects - Tanach and literature are in the core framework.
    2. If the Republicans and their partners around the world continue to hinder the implementation of treaties such as the Kyoto Convention as they hindered the implementation of the initial convention, we will get nowhere and will only worsen the already difficult situation (sea acidity, damage to biological diversity, famine in Somalia because the desert areas are expanding).
    3. I could not find any logic in the claim, the fact that the discoverer of the virus also won the Nobel Prize for Medicine.
    4. The theory can be disproved (the Cambrian cow rabbit is just one of many examples), and the fact is that in endless experiments it always stands the test, those who claim that the theory of evolution cannot be disproved simply do not understand it and invent all kinds of things about it that did not exist and were not created (that it is only random for example ).

  10. Menachem Ben's personality is not interesting, but his claims must be considered.
    1. To admit humanists: Before canceling humanistic studies in the State of Israel in one way or another, it is worth recalling the life history of Steve Gobbs and the source of his inspiration. As I recall, right after he abandoned his programming studies, he mainly spent his time in a calligraphy course. It is hard not to understand the inspiration given by this course to the essence of Apple's products.
    2. Global Warming: The Earth is warming, there is no doubt about it, but for what reason? And even if the person is responsible, are the solutions offered today (the Kyoto Treaty for example - are they serious solutions?)
    3. AIDS - Menachem Ben cites two Nobel Prize winners in medicine. I would appreciate it if someone answered their claims concretely.
    4. Darwin: I personally believe in Darwin's theory. But is the theory disprovable? We will recall a little Karl Popper and his treatment of theories about always being right.

  11. I recommend Itay's response.
    Why are you forcing me to look for Menachem Ben on the net to find out who he is and why is it interesting what he says?

  12. It's a shame to waste internet traffic and treat a person like Menachem Ben.

    Let's see how Menachem Ben will fare in a few years, holding the Bible in his hand, going against today's medicine and science..
    But at night before going to sleep he will take one pill against blood pressure... and one to fall asleep and sleep well all night
    In order for him to have the power to confuse people in the brain the next day.

  13. First of all, I agree with Itay's opinion, there are serious people who make sufficiently debunked claims. One should not refer to Mukion as Menachem Ben.

    And she asked my father, since in all the threads about the warming Shaviv's name (name) comes up, is there any chance of finding someone who will write about what he claims and what are the problems in his arguments, so that the issue will not remain at the level of the threads.

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