'Social justice' rally
'Social justice' rallyIsrael news photo: Flash 90

The Social Justice Forum has expressed support for Finance Minister Yair Lapid in a dispute between Lapid and Bank of Israel head Stanley Fischer over how to handle the national deficit.

Lapid is seeking to adjust goals on the deficit in order to give the government a larger budget for 2013, a step Fischer strongly opposes.

The Social Justice Forum, founded by organizers of the 2011 “cost of living” protests, said Sunday, “Increasing the deficit in order to avoid more budget cuts and austerity is a responsible, necessary economic policy.”

The policy is “responsible toward the Israeli public, not the international companies,” the group said.

The group criticized Fischer, who has urged cuts to the deficit increase in order to encourage foreign investment and reduce the chances of financial crisis. 

“We well remember how the Bank of Israel and its head, Fischer, were senior partners for years in the demolition of Israeli society,” it accused. “The Israeli public has no trust remaining for the outgoing bank president.”

Finally, the forum called on Lapid to increase taxes on the rich as well. “Increasing the deficit is not enough in itself, and if the purpose is to continue giving tax breaks to the wealthy alongside unnecessary, cruel budget cuts, [Lapid] will find us to be bitter, determined foes,” it warned.