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Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Debris of Slovenian political reality

By: Dr Matevž Tomšič

A few days ago, we could see how the “depoliticisation” of social subsystems, which Golob’s government promises us, looks like in practice. Milan Krek, who decided to resign from the position of director of the National Institute of Public Health due to constant political pressure, was replaced by Branko Gabrovec. Krek, who was appointed to this post in extremely challenging circumstances, in the middle of the first wave of the covid-19 epidemic, had no political, let alone party connections. Meanwhile, Gabrovec is the chairman of the health committee of the government party Social Democrats. Obviously, a political cadre!

This personnel move is the most illustrative, but by no means the only example of the actual intentions of the new rulers. So far, for example, the board members of nine hospitals (among them all the largest) have been replaced. Changes in governing bodies therefore take place in areas that are by their very nature distinctly non-political. Of course, they are even more driven where it is important from an ideological point of view. Thus, they even want to prematurely dismiss all members of the RTVS programme board, who were appointed by the National Assembly (in the previous composition), even though it would obviously be illegal. And it is very indicative that they enjoy the silent support of the dominant media, which “put on a knife” every personnel move of the previous, i.e., Janša’s government.

It is becoming more and more obvious that each new iteration of the so-called new faces brings a new degradation of political standards, both in terms of competences and behaviour of political protagonists. It is not just that the government and parliament, especially the ranks of the winning party of the last election, are dominated by people who are almost completely unknown to the general public. Some of them do not even know the fundamental acts of the Slovenian state. For example, the Minister of Culture Asta Vrečko stated that the abolition of the mandatory contribution for RTV Slovenia would be unconstitutional; this is complete nonsense, because there is no such thing in any article of the Constitution of the Republic of Slovenia. So, the minister swore to the constitution, which she does not know! And there have been quite a few such intellectual gems in recent weeks.

Urška Klakočar Zupančič, the new President of the National Assembly, also presents a special story. She is actually the “image and occasion” of the current situation, when “freedom” reigns over us. With her, it is about the absence of understanding of what is decent and what is not. The most obvious example of this was her swaggering “frolic” on the red carpet at the recent Statehood Day celebration, when she clearly saw herself as some kind of pop star. However, even more problematic than her inappropriate behaviour is her arbitrariness in conducting parliamentary sessions. Thus, she began to arbitrarily judge which of the MPs are justifiably and which are unjustifiably absent – even though she has no authority to do so (which even irritated some ruling party MPs).

It is very telling that such a person was excluded from their ranks by the Slovenian judiciary, which is ideologically strongly inclined to the left. But for “svoboda” and its behind-the-scenes directors, this is obviously a suitable staff.

The newly appointed President of the Parliament is a typical example of someone who, through a combination of circumstances (i.e., more than by chance), found herself in a position far beyond her capabilities. According to the “Peter’s Principle”, it could be said that she has far exceeded the “level of her incompetence”. If we add certain character traits to this, then we cannot be surprised at the almost complete loss of the sense of reality.

Considering such a personnel set, it is not surprising that in this short time since the beginning of the mandate, the new ruling group has already slipped a few times both on the domestic and international political floor. With what the last parliamentary elections threw at us, the “achievements” will keep on coming.

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