By: Edvard Kadič
In the last week, we witnessed at least two events that are particularly interesting for highlighting in public spaces from the point of view of communication and personal development. First of all, the Prime Minister Robert Golob put me in a good mood. In the Pop TV studio, in the programme 24ur in the evening, he taught the Slovenian and global public about the medicines against Covid-19 that we all have at our disposal. According to him, it is about the sun and sea water.
I myself believe that we are responsible for our own health first, and only then do various measures, medicines, vaccines, etc. come into play. I also interpret his words in this spirit.
Let’s collect vitamin D in the sun and strengthen the body with sea water. I guess by swimming, mostly by gargling, less likely by drinking. I do not know. Until now, I heard something about the benefits of vitamin D against the corona virus from Dr Ihan at the beginning of the pandemic, I do not remember anything like that about the sea, except that it is healthy. Just like vegetables.
This is how the well-paid guardians of Golob’s good name and reputation in the public rushed to explain to us the next day as well. They hurried to explain what exactly he meant by this and how it should be understood. Even the Government Communications Office came forward to explain what the Prime Minister had in mind. Yes, you read that right.
During the previous government, these same (literally!) custodians of the reputation of the left-wing privatisers, after every press conference of Janez Janša, Jelko Kacin, Milan Krek or any of the members of the advisory group for Covid-19, discussed at length who said what.
Not how to understand them, but what someone said. Every day, they persistently hunted for holes in statements, co-meanings, sub-meanings, extra-meanings, and everything that linguistics, philology, and human malice can offer us in this sense.
Since most of them do not remember this hunt for discredits, shaming and ridicule anymore or simply do not want to remember it anymore, let me mention only the principals who followed the mentioned hunt. Together with the “štrukelj unionists”, they shouted at all ends that they did not have accurate instructions for action. They did this as enthusiastically as if the ability to avoid common sense and find holes in the recommendations for the successful operation of the school was a requirement for the position of principal.
Today, when the “right ones” are in power, these same on-duty and well-paid reputation guardians tell everyone around them how to understand the words of their boss and not what was actually said.
In the above-mentioned case of Golob’s instructions regarding medicines against covid-19, the people heard from the Prime Minister that the sun and the sea are enough against covid-19 infections, and not medicine and science.
Moreover, it can lead to the conclusion that vaccination is a useless measure. That preventive measures and other unnecessary “coverage” recommended by science are completely irrelevant. That hand disinfection, wearing masks, keeping distance, etc. are just the caprice and conspiracy of Janez Janša.
After all, Stevanović also proved this with his rallies and the support he received. If we are consistent and follow Golob’s thinking, Stevanović was right. He is still alive, because corona did not kill him (thank God!), he was with Pahor and Golob, and to top it off, he almost made it to the National Assembly in the 2022 elections.
Considering the personnel solutions of Golob’s government with people who were left out of the National Assembly in the last elections (e.g., Bratušek and Šarec), I really will not be surprised if Stevanović is appointed as the head of some health committee responsible for fighting corona crisis in the fall.
Interestingly, exactly three years ago I published an article on one of the Slovenian portals entitled Why are we mostly led by bluffers? (Also available HERE), which caused an unexpected amount of stir at the time.
Among other things, I wrote that self-confidence very rarely reflects the level of competence, and their overlap is even so small that it is quite scary.
Determining whether a politician’s self-confidence really corresponds to his competences is (unfortunately) anything but simple.
When someone tells you that they are good at something, you can only guess whether they have correctly and impartially assessed their abilities, and of course, whether they are really telling you the truth or not.
Among other things, Dunning and Krueger drew attention to this problem in 1999 (and also received the Ig Nobel Prize for Psychology in 2000), when they said that untrained individuals are not aware of their own (low) level of knowledge in a certain field.
This leads to poor decisions and erroneous conclusions. Individuals are thus prevented from realising their own mistakes by their own incompetence. On the other hand, highly skilled individuals tend to underestimate their own skill because they mistakenly assume that tasks that are easy for them are also easy for other people.
So, the “stupid” believes that he is 100% right, and the wise allows the possibility that he is also wrong. Therefore, the development of events is dictated by the “stupid”.
In practice, this means that a self-confident performance opens the door to ideas that have no serious basis or, for example, promotion, despite someone not being competent enough in their field.
On this topic, we even know the so-called Peter’s principle, which says that people who are not capable of performing the required tasks get into positions. That they advance so long that they reach their limit of ability and step on the ladder of incompetence, where they stop due to the force of the situation.
As a result, we could humorously write that we are basically ruled by the incompetent, as the able-bodied are still working their way up.
In the spirit of this text, it is therefore really difficult for me to pass by the statement of the Minister of the Interior, Tatjana Bobnar, during her address to the public at the beginning of the removal of the wire fence on Slovenia’s southern border.
She said that time has shown that no fence can prevent migration. (?!)
I do not know what to think. When I look at the reports from the Hungarian border, I find it hard to agree with her. Should I suggest her a test by entering Hungary through fields and forests where there is a fence? Or a conversation with migrants on the Greek-Turkish border, where the Turks brought them in with buses, while the Greeks on the other side of the fence protected their territory and the rule of law with the army and water cannons, that migrants must enter the country only and exclusively through checkpoints?
Border checkpoints are not just a whim and an Illuminati conspiracy or whoever-rules-the-Earth, any more than vaccinations and other recommendations of science. At least that is not how I understand them. That is why I use them.
Just as the minister behaves at the border, when she goes, for example, to Croatia or to Italy to the sea, to fill her reserves with medicines against covid-19. Or anywhere across the Slovenian border into the world.
I myself understood the technical barriers at the border as protecting the border and people, also in the sense that they do not drown in our rivers and streams when they cross the border where there is no crossing. Also, for such reasons in Syria, Afghanistan or in Europe we know the so-called border regime. Of course, we all know this well, supporters and opponents of the wire fence, and of course also the migrants.
The border is crossed where there is a “control point”, which in Slovenia is usually called a “border crossing”. I do not know who will be responsible for (God forbid!) the next drowned person in the water between the two banks of the Kolpa, which are only 5 meters apart without a fence, but impassably apart with a fence.
Probably the minister will no longer be in office anyway and she will not care about all this anyway. But it sounds good that the removal of the wire fence is justified.
The on-duty and well-paid custodians of the reputation of the left-wing privatisers, who now have to serve their time, will still provide loud enough instructions through the media on how to understand the words of the rulers and not what was actually said.