By: Domen Mezeg / Nova24tv
“Slovenia is wasting time with the new faces because of the acclimatisation that has to happen every time, the lack of experience, and their weak left-wing politics (which is the result of this staff turnover). In these two years, the worst moments have shown us that better economic results can be achieved through operational policy. In light of this, some stabilisation and experience, and above all, dialogue and cooperation in politics, would contribute to faster economic development,” said political analyst Sebastjan Jeretič.
We asked political analyst Sebastjan Jeretič for his opinion on the phenomenon of the so-called “new faces,” who have been shaping Slovenia’s political reality for years now, especially in terms of the (economic and political) price that we have to pay because of them. “Actually, stabilisation is still happening in one part of the political space, after Janez Drnovšek‘s departure from operational politics. At that time, a certain structure, stability in this part of politics collapsed, and since then, this part of the political space has been trying to find its balance again,” said Jeretič. The main problem is the fragmentation into many “egos” and the constant search for new faces.
In this year’s election, this effect will certainly still be quite strong, especially in the left-wing political pool, because it can be seen from the poles that the type of voters that decide for the SD, LMŠ, and SAB parties, are actually still looking for a “new face,” as they are dissatisfied with what the so-called Constitutional Arch Coalition (which are the left-wing parties of the current coalition) has to offer. “The Levica party (the Left) is the only stable party there. And that is where this matter will definitely have some effect.” However, Slovenia is wasting time, which is the direct result of the ever-new acclimatisation, lack of experience, and a weak left-wing policy (resulting from this staff turnover). Regarding the payment of the economic price that is also a result of the new faces, Jeretič believes the following to be true: “In these two years, the worst moments have shown us that better economic results can be achieved through operational policy.
In light of this, some stabilisation and experience, and above all, dialogue and cooperation in politics, would contribute to faster economic development.” Regarding the influence of politics on the field of democracy, he replied that, in fact, we have not really accepted parliamentary democracy in our country yet, as we reject stable political parties, which are, so to speak, the basic tool of parliamentary democracy. In this regard, it will probably take some more time for our political system to stabilise and for us to get used to it and start using it wisely. This condition is certainly influenced by several factors. Undoubtedly, it is in the interest of the political background of the left that politics itself is weaker, because then this background has more power, but on the other hand, over the years, in the first ranks of the left, staff supply has grown weaker. However, in the next 20 years, the situation could mature a bit.
Teams of new faces are less and less capable every time, as they are mostly opportunists
Tomaž Štih, an expert on the political scene, also shared his opinion with us: “New faces are a PR idea and do not exist in terms of content. An extensive and experienced team is needed to run the country, and there are simply not enough staff in Slovenia to be able to put it together every new election. Especially because capable people have so many better choices, particularly ever since we joined the EU.” Therefore, each succeeding generation of new faces relies on the public sector and on the faithful “helpers” of every government, instead of the political vision and its own cadres, as they usually do not have them at all. In terms of carrying out their existing tasks, the ministries actually do not need the ministers at all and can function on their own. Therefore, anyone can be a minister. However, not anyone can be a good minister, unfortunately. And the price we are paying for political immaturity is quite high – a kidnapped country, political instability, and the absence of serious political projects.
“If at the time when the Berlin Wall fell, we were half a century ahead of our eastern rivals, today we only have a few years left. The country is less and less guided by the people we elect to guide it, and more and more by the people who control the public sector and the media.” An industry has been established, and the projects of new faces are actually being established and inflated by the same people before each election. However, the teams of new faces are less operationally capable each term, as they are mostly opportunists, gathered around the central person, after whom the party is also usually named. Instant parties have simply become a way of skipping pay grades in the public sector, gaining state business, and holding leadership positions in fictional institutions… Vision-free parties are also not willing to bleed for serious political projects. This is still very difficult for the established parties, let alone for those who have been elected to be MPs and consider this to be the peak of their career, or even their first job, but should be taking measures that many will not like.
The fact that one policy is cutting taxes while another is already screaming that it is going to raise them is not good for the economy and the people
While in mature democracies, governments can survive two or three mandates, in our country, for the fifth government in a row, the average length of the term is less than two years. The fact that while one government is lowering taxes, the other parties are already screaming that they are going to further raise them does not create the stable and predictable environment that the economy and the people need. “I am an optimist, and I believe that people are finally starting to understand this in 2022 and that the spell of new faces has somewhat eased. I do not believe that Slovenians would elect a person who sees politics as revenge on those who were not willing to extend his directorial mandate in a state-owned company.” We have already burned ourselves with similar politics. Šoltes founded and then (in the same month!) left his own party in exchange for a position in the European Parliament. Bratušek was ready to desert the post of the Prime Minister for the post of European Commissioner. “We are not crazy enough to vote for a Prime Minister who really wants to be the director of the Gen-I company.”