In Which Leader Of The Opposition Bullies A Private Citizen

Say what you will about the current crop of Slovenian leaders, but their blandness does have an upside. As boring and forgettable as they are, they’re also several orders of magnitude more civil and restrained in their public communication as their immediate competition. Not that the bar is particularly high, though…


Case in point leader of the SDS Janez Janša who seems to have developed both a knack for uttering things beyond the pale as well as a surprisingly thin skin. Days ago, for example, he picked on a private citizen, an entrepreneur who took issue with one of his more absurd and incendiary Facebook posts of late.

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Half A Rock From Prijedor

Pengovsky did some punditizing for media outlets which really should have known better in the last couple of days and weeks which means it’s time both readers of this blog be brought up to speed on the recent developments in Muddy Hollows. Which, fairly or not, have for the past ten days or so been focused on the loan-taking habits of the largest opposition party.

The Glorious Leader holding half a rock.

Namely, it transpired that SDS in order to finance the upcoming election campaigns took out a funny-looking EUR 450.000 loan from Dijana Đuđić, a 32-year-old Bosnian Serb woman. As the story broke, the faeces met with the proverbial rotating air blades apparatus, providing for a spectacular shitshow.

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Report Implicates President, Leader Of The Opposition in TEŠ 6 Clusterfuck

Friday last the National Assembly adopted an interim report by the parliamentary committee on TEŠ 6 coal power plant in Šoštanj. And it is a bit of a bombshell. Namely, the report deals with procurement procedures in the project which ballooned from an estimated EUR 600 million to almost 1.4 billion and states that the contract to build TEŠ 6 should have been offered via public tender and that active steps were taken to prevent that from happening, thus keeping the project non-transparent and a fertile ground for corruption.

The Šoštanj coal power plant (source)

However, unlike most committee reports of the kind, this one goes further and actually names names. The principal enablers of the TEŠ 6 fiasco according to the report were: prime minister (now president) Borut Pahor, prime minister (now MP and leader of the largest opposition party) Janez Janša and ministers of finance and economy in both governments: the late Andrej Bajuk and Andrej Vizjak in Janša’s administration as well as Franci Križanič and Matej Lahovnik in Pahor’s government. The kicker? The parliament adopted the report with a nearly 2/3 majority (59 votes out of 90), with no-none voting against.

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Presidential Election: The Run-Off

What was unlikely as late as Friday evening when the campaign ended, materialised on Sunday night when the votes were staring to come in. President Borut Pahor and his main challenger Marjan Šarec are headed for a run-off in three weeks’ time.

Results in the first round show Pahor winning most votes in all but three precincts (source)

In all honesty, Pahor came close to winning in the first round. But not close enough. With 99.98 percent of the vote counted, Pahor won 47.07 percent while Šarec won 24.96 percent. Among the also-rans, Romana Tomc of SDS won a respectable 13.74 pecent while the other main centre-right contender, Ljudmila Novak of the NSi, won 7.16 percent. Maja Makovec Brenčič of the ruling SMC won an embarrassing 1.76 percent of the vote while Angelca Likovič of the ultra-conservative GOD party tallied a measly .58 percent. The alt-right candidate Andrej Šiško won 2.22 percent of the vote which is an unpleasantly remarkable feat given that he hardly campaigned at all.

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Presidential Election 2017: Fear And Loathing Of Borut Pahor, Maja Makovec Brenčič Joins Fight Club

T-minus-seven and the presidential race finally heats up. At least in terms of words if not (yet) in numbers. Earlier today a group of broadly left-leaning intellectuals published a scathing rebuke of President Borut Pahor while the leader of the opposition SDS Janez Janša did something similar – only far more effective – days before. All the while Maja Makovec Brenčič running on the SMC ticket finally realised she’s got nothing left to lose and is at least trying to have fun.

SMC presidential nominee Maja Makovec Brenčič moments before she punches voters on the nose in her Twitter ad (source)

The polls, however, have remained consistent over the last few days. Borut Pahor is still well within the reach of clinching a first-round victory and thereby a second term as President of the Republic, joining Milan Kučan as the only president to have done so (both Janez Drnovšek and Danilo Türk served only one term, the former on account of ill health, the latter on account of, you know, losing elections). However, Pahor is not there yet. And he desperately wants to be there, lest he be subjected to the Hillary Effect in Round Two, which is why his camp is trying desperately to chip off points from other candidates wherever it can.

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