The Slovenia Times

On the Funny Side of the Alps



When the new Government came to power we heard a lot about avoiding ideological issues because the focus must be on solving the economic crisis. This was also clearly written in the coalition agreement and in the first few weeks of the new government, we were very optimistic about the improved behaviour of our politicians. And then the circus went back on the road. We witnessed the extremely "non-ideological" ceremony on National Day when the veterans of the Second World War (members of the Slovenian Partisan Army) were not allowed to participate in the ceremony -why? The least shallow, or more directly stupid excuse, was that the symbol of the five pointed red star is insulting to the members of the Slovenian Army who fought the Yugoslav Army during the ten day independance war in 1991. This is the same red star under which a huge part of Slovenian territory in the west of the country was liberated during WWII. This is the same star that was on the Slovenian flag and on voting boxes when we voted at the referendum for independence. The same star under which the first Slovenian soldiers were sworn in as members of the territorial defence. Maybe those who are responsible for the National Day ceremony should have also banned the selling of Heineken beer at the event because the same star is printed on the famous green bottle. They obviously didn't recognise the well hidden, global, communist plot.
But obviously this is part of the urgent anti crisis package, as is the renaming of Slovenian army barracks. This move by the Defence Minister (who incidently is under investigation for his "work" with DARS) is definitely crucial in the battle against the crisis. With new names for the barracks we will strike at the core of our economic problems, maybe we should also rename our biggest bank, "Nova Ljubljanska Banka", to "Former Ljubljanska banka". This could be first step in the right direction toward good corporate governance.
But we are very lucky to have a very organised and capable opposition. After they were somehow unable to unite over a single, strong candidate for the the presidential elections in the autumn, they are now preparing interpelation of three government ministers. Summer is just the right time for some constructive "destructive" moves. After not supporting the introduction of the Golden Rule in the Constitution, they must find a new plaything. The main target is obviously the Finance Minister, Janez Šušteršič, who is guilty of "extreme" savings in the public sector (he plans to lower the budget deficit to 3% - a very ugly thing to do) and "non-transparent" recapitalisation of NLB, with KBC pulling out at the last moment. They obviously forgot what the main problem of our biggest bank is and who was sitting on the supervisory board when the majority of the bad loans were granted. Bad memory is in fact a major problem of Slovenian socitey. Why again did we have premature elections and who was the prime minister who was not able to properly manage his own cabinet? Yes, this is the potential new president of the country! Understand, if you can. And in the end we got the cherry on the pie in the form of a revelation from our current prime minister: he confessed that Slovenia has a credibility problem!! Really??


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