The Gospel According To Janša

Monday night is comedy night on Slovene state television. Monday’s prime-time slot is occupied by Vladimir Vodušek and his programme Vroči Stol (The Hot Seat). The concept of the programe is usually to “grill” the visitor, mostly by Vodušek’s grueling questions where he would at first lay out his hypothesis, find little or no arguments for it, talk to himself about the lack of arguments and finally ask the guest wether he knows anything more on the matter than Vodušek does (which is not very much to start with). He would also employ a “devil’s advocate”, someone who would be willing to grill the unfortunate guest a bit more. The amount of grilling seems to be highly dependant on how close the guest is to the current government (the closer he/she is, the cooler the grill becomes), but at the very least Vodušek stuck to his concept. I’m giving him waaaaay too much leeway in terms of journalistic professionalism here, but what the hell… It is a captivating TV moment nevertheless.


vrocistol.jpg
Vodušek (right) burning a bonfire under Janša’s chair. NOT! :mrgreen: (source)


Unless of course JJ is in the building, as he happened to be yesterday evening. What we witnessed was not even an orchestrated interview but rather a public cocksucking (which went both ways, mind you, but it was mostly Vodušek who was giving head to JJ) which served no other purpose than to have the PM say things noone can refute – because there was noone in the studio to refute them in the first place. Which would not be a problem in its own right, had the interview been conducted by a competent journalist and had the format of the show not been skewed for this one occasion.

Janša was seeking to do some damage control because last week was not kind to him – and I suspect many of the weeks to come will treat him in exactly the same way. So he embarked on the counter offensive, claiming that he had nothing to do with sale of Mercator and that any claims by Zoran Janković (or anyone else) to the contrary are a complete and utter lie, because he as a prime minsiter isn’t authorised to conduct sales of state property.

Well, Janša is correct that he cannot agree on sales of state-owned firms but that doesn’t mean he didn’t do it. Evidence to the contrary is mounting, especially in the form of two high profile admissions (by Boško Šrot and Andrijana Starina Kosem) that Janša indeed gave the final nod to selling a controling share of Mercator to Laško and Istrabenz. He combined that with his new-found hatred for tycoons (Janša-speak for managers who have performed an MBO, securing the loans necesary with shares which they will have bought) and made a connection between them and the near-rampant inflation. Because the Gospel According to Janša now sayeth that the inflation is to be blamed solely on the retailers and managers who took out some 700 million euros in loans.

Call me stupid, but I don’t know how a loan for an MBO adds to inflation, especially due to the fact that € 700 milion is not all that much if you want to buy a sucessful company. For example: Merkur (LJSE, MER), the last MBO performed, at he moment has € 784 million in assets. So if you want to buy a 51-percent share (which is what the management did) you need 350 million at least. Add to that a couple of smaller MBOs and you’re at 700 milion in no time. Only a year before the government was happy to see MBOs performed. It called it “relinquishing state ownership”. But now, after Laško brewery parted ways with Janša, the Gospel sayeth that it is morally and legaly wrong to buy companies with loaned money.

The Gospel says a number of other things as well, which show that JJ is in a bit of a tight spot, because yesterday he wasn’t only skewing the truth on live television (a favourite past time of any full-blooded politician). He was outright lying. He, for example said that Mag magazine (a right-wing magazine now owned by Delo) was a victim of a hostile takeover. Mag was never a victim of a hostile takeover – quite the oposite: Delo was forced to buy the magazine due to political pressure from Janša’s government.

If, however, Janša is reffering to Delo’s management installing a new, anti-government editor-in-chief not approved by magazine’s journalists, one can agree only to the extend where it becomes obivous that it was Janša who created this monster as he allowed Laško brewery to take over Delo in 2005 and install a pro-government CEO and editor-in-chief, regardless of the fact that the paper’s journalists disagreed with both of them. At that time Mag magazine and its journalists stood idly and watched. Now they got a portion of their own medicine. I’m not saying its right, I’m just saying that it was expected.

You want more? As of yesterday, there is no media freedom in Slovenia. The Gospel according to Janša says so! It says that if you read one paper you’ve read them all and that they all print the same anti-government propaganda. He even goes on to add that the fate of free journalism in Slovenia seems to rest in the hands of a low-circulations magazine (Mag) and a lone TV reporter – obviously Vladimir Vodušek (pause to observe the PM sucking journalistic cock. A sight not enjoyed every day). So – on Sunday we had more than just free press – we had press so free that it did not even believe how free it was and that the government had to comission a study to show to the press that it was indeed free. But on Monday the press was free no more. How can that be?

It is rather simple, actually. Things are not going all that well for Janša on the home front and he has to do something. Yet the only manouver he seems capable of at the moment is lashing out at everyone who does not think exactly like he does. And to prove that he is in the right, a call-in poll was being conducted during the show which showed that 83% of callers would vote for the ruling SDS and only 17% for the opposition Social Democrats. Given the fact that it was a call-in poll and that any other public opinon poll puts opposition SD way ahead of SDS, the only relevant result we can derive from this unscientific call-in poll is that 83% of people who called in are SDS supporters.

It is a sad day for the government when it starts believeing its own propaganda.

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pengovsky

Agent provocateur and an occasional scribe.

28 thoughts on “The Gospel According To Janša”

  1. @dr. fil: Soft porn usually works only for the performers :mrgreen:

    @rollo: put your back into it! But if you want a brief re-cap: Janša->Vodušek->Xou do the math 🙂

  2. Pengovsky, I apologise for not continuing our previous discussions, but I am afraid I am not a journalist, so that means that I do not have plenty of free time to talk on various discussion forums and blogs. But I just could not resist to let you know that Phase No.2 of my “conspiracy theory” already seems to be set in motion: http://24ur.com/naslovnica/novice/slovenija/20080122_3115552.php
    It appears that Phase No.3 (remember me talking about it?) is also under way. The Srot Family is very eager to take the power on the next elections if they have over the night found common points with a lamer party such as SMS. 🙂

    This is going to be bloody, BUT at th same time very educational from those who made our way from the bottom without the help of any “mommies or daddies” or – God forbids – morbid “political godfathers”.

    Ah, the link…

  3. Actually, I think that these “coalitions” are only supporting my thesis that the electorate will mostly choose between the two largest parties while this drives the rest of the political spectrum into a huddle.

    Only Jelinčič is betting against the market, it seems – if my theory is correct, that is. We’ll see where Peče’s Lipa party leans to – if it will be actually established, that is.

    Regarding Šrot and Erjavec (hey, you guys share the same nick! 😀 ): You do know that Erjavec was a high ranking member of SLS before he swithced to DeSUS, do you? And the fact that they are both presidents of coalition parties who are in agreement over what (not) to do with Triglav?

    I mean, I realize that it is preelection period and all, but don’t blow it out of proportion. Sometimes a cigar is still just a cigar.

  4. Actually, I think that these “coalitions” are only supporting my thesis that the electorate will mostly choose between the two largest parties while this drives the rest of the political spectrum into a huddle.
    Perhaps so, but if my memory serves me right and usually it does, your theory was that the split in the party was most likely a master plan by Jelincic and Pece to guarantee a survival of their party on their next elections.

    It is a stranmge theory as it is known that a weak military commander has so far never survived a battle by splitting his forces in two.

    We’ll see where Peče’s Lipa party leans to – if it will be actually established, that is.
    That’s not easy to guess. He will form either a small Styrian party or an interest group, which will emphasize the national and provincial interests etc. and which will a couple of weeks (probably during summer) before the elections jump in the hands of SLS either as a coaliation partner or simply integrated into their midst.

    Now it is still too early, because a too early jump would look very suspicious.

    Regarding Šrot and Erjavec (hey, you guys share the same nick! 😀 ): You do know that Erjavec was a high ranking member of SLS before he swithced to DeSUS, do you?
    Wasn’t he for a short period of time also a member of LDS? 🙂

    And the fact that they are both presidents of coalition parties who are in agreement over what (not) to do with Triglav?
    The sale of Triglav was on the agenda already more than a year ago. It became a problem only, when Bajuk and Jansa offered a sale of it to the citizens and some foreign and home investors like they did it with the NKBM. The same bank where some “prominent” people Srot, Zdolsek, Valant didn’t get the share they planned and hoped to. Of course it is now important to talk populistically about the family silver (an expression coined by our dear former (?) president Kučan a couple of years ago)) and crap like that, because if Janša’s government decides to sell the Telekom and Triglav before the elections, what pleasures would then this leave for them (SD, ZARES, SLS and the rest o the lot) if they by any chance get the opportunity in September 2008 to scratch from us what they left in 2004?

    I mean, I realize that it is preelection period and all, but don’t blow it out of proportion. Sometimes a cigar is still just a cigar.
    Not if you are smoking inside and cannot see through the smoke. 🙂
    Well, be as it may be, the SMS egg has already been put in the basket, as I predicted. DESUS is on the good way to become their next egg, but I am sure you in the family know this better than I do.

  5. It is a stranmge theory as it is known that a weak military commander has so far never survived a battle by splitting his forces in two.
    As I wrote some lines later in my first reply, I think Jelinčič is betting against the market. We’ll see.

    The sale of Triglav was on the agenda already more than a year ago.
    Actually, it was on the agenda at least since 2004. As for the rest, I see no reason why sell at all, no matter who’s selling.

    Not if you are smoking inside and cannot see through the smoke
    I quit :mrgreen:

  6. As I wrote some lines later in my first reply, I think Jelinčič is betting against the market. We’ll see.
    Well, if the split with Peče was really his master plan how to make his party even more stronger than I can only say he’s a bad broker.

    Actually, it was on the agenda at least since 2004. As for the rest, I see no reason why sell at all, no matter who’s selling.
    Perhaps you are not looking with the right glasses, but Triglav has always been a source of wealth and money laundring for various government “cocksuckers” who earned a lot of money in a very short period of time by paying themselves all kind of bonuses in addition to their “meagre” salaries. This happened when Klemencic couple (famous from SIB Bank) was on the Triglave, than there was Mr. Lenic (professor of geography and another obedient LDS cocksucker) and finally we have now that incompetent and illiterate clown Mihevc as the Chairman of the Supervisory Board.

    Privatization! Mais oui… The sooner the better.

    I quit
    Hehe… Actually I did not have on my mind neither cigarettes nor cigars. 🙂

  7. That’s what Jeffrey Sachs once famously said to Eastern European countries. We know where it ended…
    We don’t need Jeffrey Sachs. We have a couple of Jeffrey Sachs in bad disguise in our own countries. Anemic Dr. Mencinger comes to my mind among the first ones…

  8. Holly cow, Karel. You tottaly follow the old proverb: “you can never be as smart as I can play stupid”. Wow, dude. You do know how to play stupid.

  9. Cara mea Antigona, si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses.

    Just some benefits of the classical education, which with time I am sure you will start to appreciate. Until then….

  10. @Karel:
    This is why I wrote “bad disguise” with the emphasize on BAD.

    You’ve lost me…

    some benefits of the classical education
    Did your classical education also cover this guy? He was big on Latin sayings as well…

  11. You’ve lost me…
    Let me refresh your memory then… What concept of privatization did Mencinger propose and in a strange perverse way is still supporting until nowdays?

    Did your classical education also cover this guy? He was big on Latin sayings as well…
    Sadly but no. Your friend? 🙂

  12. @Mencinger:
    It was definitely better than what Scachs had in mind. If I remember correctly (but I may be slightly off target) he proposed that the state become owner of all public assets directly. But please, feel free to correct me. Today I really can’t be bothered to go hunting for the facts.

    @The Latin guy:
    Not exactly my friend, but we did see a lot of each other a decade or so ago. But your education not having covered him does tell me A LOT about your background 😀

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