By: Davorin Kopše
Tanja Fajon started her career as a journalist on national television. She was in this role last when she was a reporter from Brussels, where she created favourable conditions in politics and joined the political party that is the successor to the League of Communists. She is in her third mandate as a member of the European Parliament, and has recently became the president of a political party that still cultivates sympathy for the communist regime. According to the beliefs of a growing number of people in Slovenia, she has never given up her reporting status. She is constantly writing various political letters to different addresses around the world. This has greatly strengthened after the appearance of the current Slovenian government, led by Janez Janša. According to many, she also had a strong influence on the critical and, above all, false writing in the Brussel’s Politico about Janez Janša and the media space in Slovenia.
The leader of one of the less popular political parties, who is losing support on the field day after day, is suppressing patriotic feelings in Slovenia, is in favour of illegal migration, and is campaigning against anyone she does not like at home through the European Parliament. As a tool for all this, she is using the dominant media, which, like all left wing politics, have their roots in the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, where it was ruled with a heavy hand, and journalists played the role of socio-political workers. Coercion in the media has become an ingrained trait due to long-standing privileges. In this way, about two thousand three hundred (2300) multiplied on the national RTV alone for the “needs of the nation and the state”, which has a population of two million. These are, for the most part, overpaid collaborators of the continuity of the revolutionary regime – the sold souls of the privileged.
Recently, we have been facing a new journalistic phenomenon. As the domestic false media fell below the level of trust, individual activists from the journalistic and political spheres began to write to foreign media in an accelerated and organised manner. Through this niche, they are trying to strengthen the credibility of their lies, as they are counting on the lie coming from abroad to fall on fertile ground in Slovenia. The process of discovery may take a little longer than would be right. Unfortunately, the media that publish lies do not yet know the real truth and intrigues to which they have succumbed. They publish what liars serve them in a distinctly perfidious (evil) way. Will they be at least able to apologise when they realise this?
Reverse parody – I turn the scornful to the serious
Let’s make a short comparable story based on the way it is written, which was recently afforded by the Belgian portal Politico with the title: Inside Slovenia’s war on the media. The emphasis is on rejecting lies and presenting the facts. According to the majority of the Slovenian people the attacks on Prime Minister Janez Janša and the government create an atmosphere of fear. When it occasionally seems to you that the conspirators could succeed, it simply gives you the creeps, and from there you are not far from fear. Slovenian politician Tanja Fajon is the leader of the SD party, one of the parties that, as the KUL coalition, tried to seize power on February 15th by passing elections and putting pressure on members of the government coalition in Slovenia with the help of most media.
The populist leader, who constantly incites fear and challenges democracy in the country, and her admirer is George Soros, defends the director of the Slovenian Press Agency (STA) in his constant refusal to submit business documents. This is defined in the contract between this news agency and the government, which is the only shareholder in STA and already has the right to access the company’s business policy on the basis of this fact. Given the many circumstances, this documentation would reveal background connections that really influence the way of reporting and meeting the interests of a deep state operating in the background, with Tanja Fajon’s political supporters at the forefront. The requirement for business transparency is therefore called pressure on the medium.
The toxic effect of Fajon
With her political supporters, Tanja Fajon defends Radio Television of Slovenia, which reports biasedly in favour of left wing policies, and often openly lies in its news programmes. She is also defending TV Slovenia in her support for virus spreaders, which is reflected in the fact that they take the side of those dissatisfied with the measures at every opportunity, which is a duality of messages that has a strong influence on the attitude towards efforts to curb the epidemic. Obviously there are too many employees in this media house and they are overpaid. In order to maintain their status, which does not belong to them, they are trying to help slander the government both at home and abroad in the media. RTV Slovenia is trying to hide its way of working by falsely striving for media freedom. Undoubtedly, there is no shortage of it in Slovenia, as no one has laid a finger on anyone due to her journalistic work in Slovenia, and Fajon, as a politician and former employee of this national media, works hand in hand with them. Unfortunately, we are increasingly hearing that invitations to the police and the prosecution are being received by journalists who respect the mission of this profession, which is to ensure the right of the public to be informed. These are, of course, in conflict with those mentioned above.
According to intellectuals, many political analysts, and other experts, Fajon has a toxic effect on the attitude towards the media in Slovenia as a country in Southeast Europe and beyond. She is adding her poison to the already poisoned parts of this guild, which does not allow democratisation and the elimination of the anomalies from which she lives on. The media are, of course, free (and in this sense they should not even be), as evidenced by their biased and untrue reporting, and for this they are not persecuted. They are only criticised, but they reject this possibility.
The author of this article spoke with more than a dozen people, including senior employees of the Slovenian public media. Many of them accuse Fajon of being hostile to Janša and the legitimate government, as well as to the whole of right wing politics. They reported to have received many outraged phone calls, letters, emails, and messages on social media. One by one they told that the defence of biased and false media by Tanja Fajon has encouraged many journalists to lie even more vigorously and thus seek to cause even more damage to the government. To protect themselves, some even turn to the police, where they falsely claim to be persecuted and no longer dare to go out on the streets. While on the one hand some journalists try to report impartially, on the other hand, false journalists complain that they are being pressured and forced to self-censoring. Unfortunately, despite this fictitious claim, they are still allowed to insist on their biased actions and lies, which they are only freely escalating.
Based on the prompting of liars from Slovenia, Věra Jourová stated last year that journalists should report without fear or affection. However, she did not say if she also had in mind intentional tendentious journalism, which continuously undermines all the efforts of the Slovenian government. The purpose is clear; together with the Slovene political opposition, they are striving for the fall of the government. Who is conscious in this story and who may be deceived will be shown with time.
The journalist, who wished to remain anonymous, said the pressures of the political forces of continuity were enormous. When they are joined by editors and other media influencers, the situation is unbearable and you simply bow down. You start writing by dictation, and eventually you know exactly what you have to write to harm the government, and on the other hand, you have to avoid facts pertaining to the work and achievements of the government.
Throughout his political career in the Republic of Slovenia, Prime Minister Janez Janša has received angry attacks from the media. They portray him as an autocrat who does not want any criticism. In this way, he has been at the center of the battlefield for decades, where there is a conflict between those who want continuity from the communist era, where the chosen privileged one rule, and those who want change. Janša is, of course, on the side of democratisation, freedom, progress, and enforcement on the basis of quality. For this reason, Marko Milosavljevič, a professor of journalism and media policy at the University of Ljubljana, described him as a man who does not tolerate criticism of himself. Of course, you can implement change most effectively if you are in power. That is why Janša is the biggest target of zombies from the past, which the nation has plebiscitary renounced. As the media in Slovenia are one of the major problems, Janša naturally criticises them. Although he does not interfere with the influence on media reporting and free journalism, he is condemned only because of the deserved criticism that he wants to put them on a leash. On the contrary, the media have had the truth on a leash for (too) long.
Janez Janša’s claim that the atmosphere of intolerance and hatred is created by a narrow circle of editors who have both family and capital connections with the pillars of the deep state is very much alive and true, but it is also painful for them. Yes, it is hard to insist on a lie. This requires more energy than the truth, as the latter, by its basic characteristic, forces itself to the surface.
The distortion and corruption of the biased media space has in some way recently been saving the development of the Internet and social networks. Of course, this is disturbing for the classic way of imposing opinions. Globally, former US President Donald Trump, who has used social media very effectively, has been prevented from defending narrow interests. Janez Janša also effectively uses Twitter and Facebook, where he can freely express his opinions and views. Unfortunately, he is also forced to publish many corrections of lies spread by the media and politicians shaped in the old flexible lying way. They have Marshal Tito as their role model, and they have described Janša as Marshal Twitter and are trying to portray him as something bad. Apparently a manipulative behaviour reveals the fact that they are trying to portray someone in a bad light by comparing him to their role model, whose historical role is known throughout the world. Can you be even more corrupt?
Writing under someone’s order that the supposedly eminent journalist Lili Bayer afforded herself continues in the same manner. I myself have stopped following her writing somewhere in the middle of this column, but she is still available to interested readers online. In the writing of Politico, all the misery of the contradictions of the pamphlet are quickly revealed to a reader who is a little more attentive. The lady is trying to prove that in Slovenia there is something limited, oppressed, and even persecuted, which is nevertheless happening and growing en masse, but no one is responsible. Namely, forged journalism.
Davorin Kopše is a conservative politician and former candidate on the joint list of the Slovenian Democratic Party and the Slovenian People’s Party for a member of the European Parliament.