Janša Deflects And Denies As Covid-19 Makes A Comeback

Covid-19 infection and mortality numbers in Slovenia are at a high not seen since the worst of the second wave. The 7-day average is the highest it has even been. If this goes on, one in every 400 Slovenians will have died of Covid-19 in a matter of weeks. Such is life in Muddy Hollows these days, where the government of Janez Janša bet the house on vaccines and then proceeded to fuck up the vaccination campaign.

A tweet by Slovenian PM Janša commenting on internal Dutch politics.
Slovenian PM doing some casual homophobia

Then again, rule by decree, liberal use of tear gas and general incompetence don’t help either. As a result, prime minister Janez Janša is now forced to contemplate the one thing he explicitly said he would not do. Reimposing the lockdown. But to do that and survive politically, he is resorting to the only three things he is really good at. Diversion, denial, and deflection.

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Keeping The Eye On The Ball

Pengovsky was about to write up the fifth (and possibly last) installment of the Clearly, No-one Was Thinking series, when Angelika Mlinar was somewhat unexpectedly not green-lighted as minister for EU cohesion funds by the relevant parliamentary committees.

Angelika Mlinar during her committee hearing (source: Matija Sušnik/Nat’l Assembly)

The one thing that stood out as a sore thumb was the fact that it was not her credentials that were debated but rather her national loyalties. In fact, what we witnessed in the committee hearing on Tuesday was a mix of latent nationalism and sexism, with some internal party strife to boot.

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Clearly, No-one Was Thinking (part 3, feat. Angelika Mlinar)

The Alenka Bratušek/Angelika Mlinar duo is making waves again. After their failed attempt to make the cut in the EU vote last May, the SAB leader nominated the former Austrian-Slovenian MEP for the position of minister without portfolio in charge of EU cohesion funds. Somewhat predictably, all hell broke loose.

Angelika Mlinar, the SAB nominee for minister in charge of EU cohesion funds (source)

There are various ways of looking at the move and not all of them paint a rosy picture of Bratušek and the SAB. But in what was either a shrewdly calculated risk or pure luck, the debate has largely centred on Mlinar’s eligibility for the position, once more showing that the one thing the political landscape in Muddy Hollows sorely lacks is any sort of open-mindedness and imagination and that is in fact bursting with autarchy, bigotry and jingoism.

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Commissioner of Last Resort

Janez Lenačič, the (current?) Slovenian nominee for commissioner in the upcoming European Commission, had his first hearing in the Slovenian parliament yesterday. As the nomination process is wholly within the government purview, the parliamentary hearing is mostly a dog-and-pony show, intended to appease the grandstanding urges of MPs. Nevertheless, the non-binding vote finally brought to an end to the latest case study in how not to manage human resources.

Marjan Šarec (left) and Janez Lenarčič (source)

To say that the entire episode was a shitshow deluxe would be a bit of an understatement. It is incredibly ironic how PM Marjan Šarec was ever so vocal about the bizarre spectacle of shambolic commissioner nomination Muddy Hollows endured in 2014 and yet ended up pretty much in the same place Alenka Bratušek and later Miro Cerar ended up in five years ago.

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Bratušek Budget Bruises Brought By Butthurt Bandelli

“I didn’t deserve this” said minister of development and European cohesion policy Marko Bandelli (SAB), butthurt as he announced his resignation on 13 November thus setting off a rocky ten-day period for the government of Marjan Šarec. And while the main event of the last few days were the 2018 local elections and some surprising results, the bad blood between various coalition members burst in the open almost as soon as the polls closed.


Marko Bandelli and Alenka Bratušek (source)

By itself, the Bandelli thing is a pretty straightforward case of the Dunning-Kruger effect in action. The erstwhile mayor of Komen, known for his colourful language and thin skin was a somewhat surprising pick for the non-descript post of assistant beancounter minister for EU cohesion funds. And indeed it turned out that the ambition got the better of him. In fact, we will never know whether Marko Bandelli would have made a good minister without portfolio in charge of EU cohesion funds, because the man turned out to be spectacularly inept at being a senior government official as such.

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