Going Loco

The latest and greatest example of this government losing its grip on reality…

One of the decisions of last Thursday’s Cabinet meeting is to rename Ljubljana International Airport. Henceforth it shall be known as Jože Pučnik International


The government said that Jože Pučnik has done so much for Slovenia and its independence that he deserves to have an important facility carry his name.


True, the man was one of the driving forces behind independence, but he sure as hell wasn’t the only one. He didn’t just come to the bar one night and said to his fellow dissidents “Listen guys, I’ve an idea… Why we don’t declare independence?“, and everyone else didn’t go “Hey, that’s a neat idea! Why didn’t I think of that?“.

Besides – he never held any formal function (we was elected deputy, but that was more or less it). Now, the government would have you think that this is all perfectly normal. Afterall, we do have JFK I’ntl in New York, or Charles de Gaulle International in Paris – they even mention John Lennon International in Liverpool as proof of their endless wisdom.

There are differences, though… One: Jože Pučnik was never elected president – neither did he write a single hit song. Two: There are little public locations in Slovenia that are named after politicians. There were of course numerous Tito’s Steets, Kidrič’s Parks, etc, but few of them now remain, more of a historic relic than a sign of respect. And (perhaps more importantly) two – or three, for those keeping count: There are waaay better options for naming the largest Slovene airport. Perhaps it could be named after Edvard Rusjan, the first Slovene flyer, who went airborne only six years after Wright brothers. On the other hand (my faviourite), the airport could be named after Herman Potočnik – Noordung, whose seminal work “The Problems of Space Travel” was the basis for Werhner von Braun’s breakthroughs in rocket design.

But no… In accrodance with the totalitarian instincts of this government, we now have an airport named after a party leader. Sounds awfully familiar….

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Agent provocateur and an occasional scribe.

16 thoughts on “Going Loco

  1. I like the title of this “loco” 🙂

    it’s complete madness the Pucnik Thing, I couldn’t agree more with you.

    p.s: you could have mentioned one more particular airport:”george bush international”….i’ll leave google for u to find out where it is…. 🙂

  2. Great. Put a name with non-latin characters žč to make it easy for foreigners, then decline it so everyone thinks it’s a woman 🙂
    Tomorrow they’ll rename Slovenia to Jansalandia … or smtg.

  3. Hope it isn’t such a shame, that I never heard about that guy before. It might come out pretty effective to scare non-slvaic foreigners away by calling the airport “Letališče Jožeta Pučnika” – after some weeks of failing to learn how to pronounce the place, they’d rather go somewhere else 😉

  4. Gee, yes, Dietmar’s right: how will the rest of the world ever learn to pronounce it?
    But then, Brnik is bad enough, isn’t it. It should probably be called “Slovenia” or something nice.

  5. Is Brnik just the name of some village near the airport or the name of the airport itself? At least you can learn how to pronounce that name within 2-week hollidays. “Ljubljana International” wouldn’t sound bad. If the Slovene government has such nice ideas, why didn’t they name the airport after Peter Kozler then? :mrgreen:

  6. Yes, Brnik (Upper Brnik, to be presice) is the name of a nearby village.

    Re: Peter Kozler: So I guess Maribor Int’l should be named after the original maker of Laško beer? 😀

  7. Might be the same as Stuttgart Airport – sometimes “Echterdingen” is mentioned, which is the name of the nearest town.

    As Laško seem to own half of Slovenia anyway, they could buy the whole airport and name it “Laško Int’tl airport”, which would be too offensive, if they did that with Brnik 😉

  8. 💡 Way better idea! 💡
    as Maribor is in Štajerska, it might be more appropriate to find out the name of that guy who plantet the štiristoletna trta!

  9. I agree with you pengovsky. Although I always think of it as Brnik Airport myself. I always thought it kind of funny that it was called Ljubljana Intl when it was rather far removed from LJ itself. Kranj would be more appropriate for the nearest big city.

    I never really cared for airports named after people though. Do you think the new name will take though? I know some places even after being renamed, the general populace is so used to the old way the new name never takes hold. Might this become the case Ljubljana Intl. Airport?

  10. Actually, I’m more worries about it being re-renamed, and then re-re-renamed and so on, in typical Slovene manner.

    I’m sure, though, the name Brnik will hold 😀

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