Sunday, October 21, 2007

And the winner of Poland's election is...

A huge win for Civic Platform!

League of Polish Families and Self defense are out of parliament!

Civic Platform – 44.2 percent
Law and Justice – 31.3
Left and Democrats – 12.2
Polish Peasants Party – 7.9
LPR (League of Polish Right) – 1.6
Self defense – 1.4

Others (do the math)

Turn out – well over 55 percent.

The significant figure is the one for the Peasants Party, as they will now probably form a coalition with Civic Platform.

These are opinion poll results – official results out Monday or Tuesday. All we know for certain is that the German minority will have two seats in the Polish parliament, because they always do.

Any party under 5 percent will not be drawing a salary from tax payers and will not get a nice little seat in the Polish parliament.

But turnout has been good, although this can have some bad consequences.

the beatroot has been told (see comments on previous post) that one polling station in north Warsaw - election office 784 ul Staffa Zoliborz - ran out of ballot papers in the afternoon, delaying voting for some while.

That story has been confirmed by the electoral commission, which says there were also shortages of ballot papers in the Ursynow district of Warsaw.

That was one of the farcical ‘incidents’ which prolonged the election day, first by 15 minutes, then 20, then 25, then 30 minutes and then finally by three hour.

Drowning sorrows, drowning ducks

There was certainly a movement to Civic Platform in the last few days – especially after the election debates, which, to my amazement, seem to have made a real difference to the result.

The Law and Justice election ‘celebration’ party is being held in Warsaw's Hyatt hotel, about 2 minutes walk from where I live. The lady in the newsagents across the road said journalists covering the PiS piss up were saying that the party henchmen and lawmakers have been waltzing around the hotel with their noses in the air, being obstructive to journos, and convinced they are going to win.

I suppose the PiS piss up has turned into a bit of a wake.

Live blog as it happened - Results at 8.30 pm, Polish time...
20.23: Actually, this is turning into a farce. They have now revized the time again - the fifth time today - and we will know exit poll results at 9 O'Clock, or even later. And to think that the government was outraged that the OSCE wanted to come and observe these elections!
20.48: Turnout 55 percent.
21.00: I don't believe it. Now the electoral commission has announced that there is something wrong in Gdansk, and they do not know when results can be announced.
But TVN24, in anticipation that the results were just about to be allowed to be released, showed a bar chart that had one of the parties significantly in the lead. Which one could that be, we wonder? Are we coming to the end of a mini-era?
And someone in Lepper's Self defense party earlier made a 'civil arrest' of a journalist, accusing him of breaking the 'election silence' law. The hapless journo has since been 'released'.
21.14: The electoral commission appear to be overwhelmed with what is a high turnout for Poland.
21.24: We are now told that 'election silence' will finally end at 22.55! What a mess. But turnout is now officially 55 percent.
21.24: The blog has had 2,000 visits today, already...everyone waiting for ...something.
Age seems to be a factor in who came out to vote. The over 60 age group voted least - 47 percent. And in big cities 74 percent voted - suggesting that in small towns and rural areas the tirnout was low. That is bad, VERY bad, for Law and Justice.
21.56: Apparently, many people in rural areas have...moved to Ireland! This has depleted the social base for parties dependant on these folk's vote. You can guess which parties...
22.00: Um....anyone know any jokes....or something. Maybe: "What do the Kaczynskis do on a tennis court? They play volleyball," ha, ha.
22.28: EVERYONE HAS LEFT THE AFTER ELECTION PARTY AT THE HYATT HOTEL AND GONE HOME !!! The hotel is just around the corner from where I live. Guess which party was having the 'celebration' party there? Law and Justice. I think someone has told them something.


Anonymous said...

I'm officially fucked off with this election. Yesterday I went to the bookies to put a bet on (well, misery insurance actually: 500zl on PiS to win) and the bastards told me that they'd already stopped taking bets because of the election black-out!

So I put the 500 on South Africa to win the rugby instead.

Anonymous said...

Now it's extended to a 9pm finish. What will BR be doing to keep busy for the extra 40 minutes?

Funny how they only ran out of ballot papers in the cities? Seeing how people in cities are so much less likely to vote for PiSs....

beatroot said...

Hi Harry.

You put money on S Africa? That would be 'misery insurance, too - England were so unlucky and I have discovered I really like watching brutal rugby - but England had longer odds - a bit like PiS's odds in the final days.

Damien Moran said...

BR, where is that 55% figure from. TVP arereporting 52%. If 55% is right, then I guessed spot on. Not that it matters a fuck - I didn't put any money on it. I could do with a few more bob and all!

Damien Moran said...

'cisza wyborcza trwa'

The election silence goes on, and on, and on.........

It's not stopping at the revised time of 9pm either.

beatroot said...

the 55 percent is an opinion poll, that flashed up on's from an opinion poll....

Damien Moran said...

Jesus....TVN na zywo have just put on their regular 'Dance with Stars' programme. So that's what the other 45% are doing. At least Bosak is not on it anymore. And hopefully he wouldn't be in the next parliament either.

michael farris said...

Arrgh! I didn't se the leaked poll. Too bad, now I'm left to wonder if it would be epistimologically or positivistically fascinating....

beatroot said...

I think it would be phenomenologically fascinating, actually. But it just means that I am going to be working till about 1 in the morning.

But what I saw - and they thought that the silence would end in about 30 seconds before a last minute stop to proceedings - was a bar chart with a clear lead for someone. I I think we are in for a change.

Damien Moran said...

BR, you mean Polska Partia Pracy topped the polls?;)

Election silence extended to 10.55pm - is that right?

michael farris said...

Just saw part of PKW press conference where the boob facing the press got a question as to whether OSCE observers were at the places that ran out of cards. He said "I don't know" then looked down at his Very Important Paper and didn't look up until there was another question ....

rz said...

How large is the danger that the extra time will be used to "optimize" the election results?

Anonymous said...

I can just say old ladies being bussed around from one locale to the next and back again (with a change of beret on the bus)

-someone not wanting to break the laws, such as they are

beatroot said...

The delay because of lack of ballot papers was first reported on this blog - look at anon comment in previous post...

Damien Moran said...

good question. BR, any idea whether Zoliborz is one of the areas and it's voting tendency? Did they mention any of the polling stations that time has been extended for? Or is it just being extended cause folks in the countryside have been taking a heap of tea breaks throughout the day?

Anonymous said...

On Jean Quatremer's blog, he's talking of PO's victory, 10% difference with PiS :

beatroot said...

Yeah, the Zoliborz district was mentioned by Commission about 7.00 pm - along with Ursynow.

Brain May - play us a tune! But I cannot recommend people people to that link as I am probably under election law here.

rz said...

On the webpage of "Die Zeit" an article seems to imply that the hold up is because of an extension of opening times in those places where the lack of ballots occurred. Which would mean that no foul play is going on.

beatroot said...

Indeed....most conspiracies are in realty just sad cock ups.

Damien Moran said...

Right, fuck this for a game of cards. I'm off to collect the girlfriend. Any chance you can get the boyz to delay the results until 11.30pm BR?

C'mon, what's another half hour sure?

michael farris said...

tv24pl just mentioned hearing 'voices' connected with PiS suggesting they just might try to get the elections .... nullified. This in connection with various problems with the ever-extending cisza, insufficient voter cards etc

Interestinger and interestinger...

beatroot said...

And predictable, I suppose. But you are right, there is going to be shit flying...

Meg Q said...

If they push this back again, I'm going to start pulling my hair out.

Even though I'm in the North American Mountain Time Zone, where it's almost 3 in the afternoon and sunny, relaying results to my Polish father-in-law who is in the Pacific Time Zone.

Anonymous said...

43.7% PO!
30.7 PiS

Meg Q said...

BTW - "The over 60 age group voted least - 47 percent."

Hmmm. Guess someone did nick Granny's ID card - or at least her beret, so that she couldn't go out in public? ;^)

Or perhaps there were lots of rural auto "breakdowns" - "sorry, babcia, I just can't drive you into town to vote today!"

Anonymous said...

League of Polish Fascists 1.4%
Self Offense 1.5%

Roman's heading for irrelevance and Lepper's going to prison!

Brad Zimmerman said...

All I've got to say is, "huzzah!"

Anonymous said...

I think I may well get very very drunk indeed.

Meg Q said... is saying PO 44.2%, PiS 31.3%.

Nice pic of a satisfied-looking Donald Tusk as well.

Rzeczpolpolita has PO 44%, PiS 30.4%.

Other sites differ just slightly - basically, PO about 44%, PiS 30.5-31.5%, then LiD 12-13%, PSL 7.5-8%, and everyone else well below 5%.

lemuel said...

Great news! Congrats!

Anonymous said...

Now, you can go and see the link ! Well, I suppose it's now irrelevant ;-))
Anyway, these results are brilliant ! Wonder if abroad results might change the gap between PiS and PO. I'm in Brussels and this morning, accompanying my polish girlfriend to the polish consulate, I was amazed by the queue : nearly 150m/200m !
No, I won't play you a tune ;-) You should ask my parent to play it (what an idea calling me Brian...;)

Bravo for your blog.

Szilveszter said...

Well, congratulations to Poland, I was cheering for you people. And I only hear what comes though the media here in Hungary - it must have been loads worse experiencing it.
I'm hoping this means a turn-around for all of Central Europe, we could definately use the good news. Cheers again!

michael farris said...

Tusk's speech was about how love is the strongest force in the universe (yeah, weird).

Kaczynski's speech was about how they couldn't prevail against the unprecedented front of agression by the murderers of Popieluszko.

Kind of sums it up right there...

rz said...

Fantastic News!

The result is so decisive, that the PiS will only look like sore loosers if they are going to challenge the election.

michael farris said...


I also hope things start going better in Magyarorszag (one of my favorite places on earth and first choice on my list if they ever throw me out of Poland)

YouNotSneaky! said...

Hey, time to celebrate.

michael farris said...

"PiS will only look like sore loosers if they are going to challenge the election"

When has that ever stopped them?

beatroot said...

I am on my [hic] second bottle of wine already....

I am so tired and have been working all day...but do PO have enough to rule alone?

Anonymous said...

@beatroot: do PO have enough to rule alone?

According to tvn24 they need 4 more seats. They have now 227 and 231 grant rule without coallition.

michael farris said...

How hard would it be to peel off a half dozen members of PiS?

PiS certainly tried to do the same to its so-called allies at the time so turnabout would certainly be fair play ...

Tim Harrell said...

Well, they don't need to take MPs from PiS; they can get them from PSL in a coalition. Also, these are exit poll figures so the final numbers from the official result might push them into an outright majority (they already have a clear majority in the Senate).

Besides, I don't see LiD automatically voting on the same side as PiS (who have alienated absolutely everyone) so a lot of the time they wouldn't necessarily need a formal coalition arrangement to carry the vote - they're in a much stronger position than PiS were before the election.

In a strange kind of way, I'm going to miss the antics of Lepper and Giertych. Maybe they could exhibit them both at Warsaw Zoo in the monkey cage (and as Harry says, Lepper is probably going to end up behind bars anyway!)

Anonymous said...

First of all, the may not have 227 seats. This is an exit poll. When the votes are counted, it may turn to be several more or less. (The conventional wisdom is that the exit poll slightly overestimates the victory). The official results are to be announced on Tuesday -- we'll really know then.

So, they will probably form the coalition with PSL, because PSL is ideologically closest to them.

Anyway, I am glad that we are finally done with the IV Rzeczypospolita.

michael farris said...

Well Kaczynski's ruling out a coalition, so PSL is probably the better choice (over LiD though I'm not a fanatical opponent of the ex-commies at all).

I actually think PiS is better suited to the opposition rather than governing role and I'm feeling generous enough right now to wish them well in that role (it probably won't last, but what the hey?)

Tim Harrell said...

If there is no longer a 'fourth republic' does that mean that Duck #2 will be handing in his notice also? After all, it's hard to be "President of the Fourth Republic" when it no longer exists. ;-)

Damien Moran said...

Ok, enough of this congratulations stuff. Let's be critical here.

PiS were and still are assholes.


PO want to get the Polish troops out of Iraq but were still pro-war when it mattered - big business interests and all that.

PO say they will get a better deal for Poland in talks with the U.S. regarding the proposed missile system. 81% of Poles are against the system according to opinion polls. Will they hold a referendum - I doubt it.

PO wants more security guarantees for Poland such as the U.S. Patriot short-range anti-missile and anti-aircraft system. So the will Defence spending continue to increase and public health care financing comparatively decrease?

PO will most likely allow the Via Baltica/Augustow motorway to bulldoze it's way through Rospuda - big business interests, and all that.

PO will create a cut-throat meritocracy with fuck-all solidarity - and I'm not talking about the PiS version of solidarity.

I'm Irish and live in Poland. I don't want Poland to become another Ireland....we;re a greedy bunch of fucks who'd sell our mothers if the price was right. Then we'd go to Mallorca or Budapest to have a look at our 3rd home, just to make sure it's being managed alright.

Am I a bitter bastard? sometimes.....but most of the time I'm a fairly fun-loving bloke. I just don't like my enemy's enemy is my friend style of analysis.

Thanks for the blogging BR, great work. Don't get too drunk, ya might be kidnapped by some very PiSsed off people (PiS,SO,LPR).

Tim Harrell said...

PiS now only have the majority of the vote in the 3 eastern voivode and Swietokrzyskie:,1525506,0,1,wiadomosc.html Giertych's Rump Party didn't seem to get the majority anywhere so I'm struggling to understand just where 'Holy Poland' is located. Maybe it's now in Belarus? (well they have the anti-semitism at least)

beatroot said...

And what happened to the mohair berets?

Kaczor did not look that shocked. Maybe he is playing the long game. The next presidential election is in three years time. By that time Tusk etc will have screwed a few things up. So it will be easier for Lech Kaczynski to win a president election that way, than if Law and Justice had staggered on for another few years and made themselves unelectable.

But I am going to cheer a change of atmostphere in this country - hopefully. Let's hope for a little less burak type behaviour from our rulers.

sonia said...

I am VERY happy with the results !!!

Anonymous said...

Does anybody know anything about PSL? It looks like we'll be counting on them to curb PO's wilder neo-liberal fantasies lika the flat tax, involuntary euthanasia, eating the poor....

beatroot said...

Bo, Pawlak, I have heard euthanasia and eating the poor will be privatized and sold off to gazprom.

AS predicted by Opamp the margin of victory has narrowed a little....PO 41, PiS PSL will be in government.

Did we hear right or did Kaczynski in his losing sppech compare PO with the murderers of Popieluszko?

The man is mentally ill.

michael farris said...

Here are Kaczynski's words as recorded by Nasz Dziennik:

"Nie daliśmy rady potężnemu frontowi od "Faktów i Mitów" - pisma, które zatrudniło Grzegorza Piotrowskiego, mordercę księdza Popiełuszki, poprzez "Trybunę", "Gazetę Wyborczą", dwie prywatne telewizje, aż po Donalda Tuska"

quick, sloppy translation:

"We couldn't overcome the powerful front from "Facts and Myths", a magazine that once employed Grezegorz Piotrowski, (the/a) murderer of father Popiełuszko, through Tribune, Gazeta Wyborcza, two private television stations and up to Donald Tusk"

michael farris said...

hmmm Fakty i mity have a slightly different version of the quote:

"Nie daliśmy rady potężnemu frontowi, który się rozciągał od >>Faktów i Mitów<<, pisma, które zatrudniało kiedyś Grzegorza Piotrowskiego, mordercę księdza Popiełuszki, aż po >>Nie<<, >>Gazetę Wyborczą<<, różne telewizje, PO, LiD itd."

again, quick and sloppy:

We couldn't overcome the powerful front that ranged/spread from "fakty i mity", a magaine that once employed Grzegorz Piotrowski, one of the murderers of father Popiełuszko to "Nie", "Gazeta Wyborcza", various tv stations, PO, LiD and on and on"

I'm too lazy to find the video and listen carefully. maybe someone else is feeling energetic.

michael farris said...

In my brief wallow in schadenfreude, I think my favorite quote is this, from one Anna Rudzka of PiS:

"Warszawa to hołota. Prawdziwej Warszawy już nie ma. Zginęła w Katyniu i Charkowie -
- Tutaj jest warszawka, która nie potrafi nas docenić"

quick and loose translation (American, appropriate british may be pretty different)

"Warsaw's a bunch of white trash. There's no real Warsaw anymore, it died at Katyń and Charków, now all you've got is a puny version that doesn't know enough to appreciate us."

stay classy, Anna.

Anonymous said...

Interesting to see how popular PiS are with US ex-pats:

Anyone seen any figures for UK polling stations?

Anonymous said...

Did we hear right or did Kaczynski in his losing sppech compare PO with the murderers of Popieluszko?

The man is mentally ill.


Well, I've heard prey tell that some PO supporters(?) compared the Dux to the Taliban.

BTW, BR, what is Gazprom? I thought they were the Russian gaz guys. Yea, so, duh...

beatroot said...

Exactly is how the Russian government bosses the world.

Anonymous said...

I don't want Poland to become another Ireland....

So you want Poland to become one big open-air museum, where you can come to see Rozpuda and get some cheap beer and hookers.

Sorry dude, but that does not chime well with me.

michael farris said...

"I don't want Poland to become another Ireland....we;re a greedy bunch of fucks who'd sell our mothers if the price was right."

How much experience do you have with the third world or countries closer to their communist past?
Real hardships and struggles for survival make people do far worse things than prosperity does.

Go ahead and tsk tsk your crass, materialistic countrymen (I might well join you) but recognize that the Irish aren't selling their children as sex slaves or reporting each other to the secret police for gaudy trinkets. It's places untouched by that awful commercialism where you find that behavior.

Canon Team said...

I need to say one thing though - People in Ireland - those that emmigrated where the ones standing in lines to cast the vote for almost 3-4 hours. Must say that majority on Civic Platform - so not true what you say.

Anonymous said...

So Tusk is going to sell out to Gazprom?

Is that something the K-twins were claiming?

And why should Gazprom be any different, piggish and bullying-wise, than the other oil companies?

beatroot said...

No Geez, I was joking. I don't suppose that there will be abortions in Milk bars either. But I am sure Giertych thinks they will be now.

As far as Ireland goes - is this some lame left wing point the guy is trying to make? This is what infuriates me about me old mates on the Left these days - they are against progress. They would much rather people sat around in mud huts in noble poverty, with a very small carbon foot print, of course.

I despair...

Anonymous said...

I realize you were cracking silly BR. But my point still holds that Gazprom doesn't act that much differently than American or British oil companies, no? And might the PO be more accomodating in dealings with the the Russians in some ways and if so which ways? If so is that necessarily so bad for the folk of Poland? Maybe your joking wasn't completely off the mark. I dunno.

Anonymous said...

And I'm all for relatively smaller carbon footprints especially for the most carbon-spewing countries.

beatroot said...

And I am for creating weather controling technologies...but that's another matter.

As far as Russia is concerned, Tusk will be trying to calm things down with the Russians and the Germans. But Gazprom are not like BP. The Kremlin controls gazprom and it is used as a means of getting Russia's way internationally. They use it like they used to use tanks and stuff.

Anonymous said...

So how do Exxon and BP act so much differently? Seems like they have control of the the tanks and divisions, too.

And weather-controlling technologies have real Mighty Mouse potential?

beatroot said...


Tim Harrell said...

Improving relations with Germany will be relatively straightforward: Tusk merely has to refrain from constantly slapping Angela Merkel in the face like the Kaczynskis did.

Russia will need to be handled more delicately but Tusk has an immediate head start by virtue of not being one of the ducks. Moscow will be very happy to see Jaroslaw K go.

Anonymous said...

Luddite? I don't advocate destroying machinery except weaponry (and I've never done it myself but yay to Damien!) nor do I call for stopping promising technological research. I do have a problem employing technology that does the opposite of what it claims to do, ie. the use of corn, sugarcane, and palm nuts for biofuel. I am a pessimist about pie-in-the-sky quick fixes and having too much faith in capitalist corporate "progressives" like the Tuskites.

Damien Moran said...

I said: 'I don't want Poland to become another Ireland....'

Opamp responded: 'So you want Poland to become one big open-air museum, where you can come to see Rozpuda and get some cheap beer and hookers.
Sorry dude, but that does not chime well with me.'

No dude, I'm sorry, I don't get your logic. For one, I'm not into cheap beer or hookers. Actually I'm not into expensive beer or hookers either. Let me clarify, I don't drink alcohol and don't fuck hookers.

The issue I was trying to bring up is irresponsible motorway building - in Ireland the government have decided to build a motorway through the Tara valley, a World Heritage site. That's my only point.

Of course I'd rather if potatoes, tomatoes and the like were not been transported thousands of miles in trucks all over Europe into countries which can already grow tomatoes and potatoes and the like, but hey, I guess I'm just plain old-fashioned huh?

Let them go a round the main part of Rospuda, not right through the middle of the fucking thing.

Damien Moran said...

'How much experience do you have with the third world or countries closer to their communist past?
Real hardships and struggles for survival make people do far worse things than prosperity does.'

Jaysus, please don;t say I'm blowing my trumpet when I tell you:
I worked with homeless people in Dublin for 4 years who have lived and experience pretty shite conditions. I've volunteered in Haiti and Palestine, lived with many people from the Global South for years (I really fucking hate the term 3rd world). I have very good friends and relations who work with refugees, etc. in the Global South. I've lived here for over 2 years so this is my only experience of living long-term in a former commie stronghold.

I'm 27 years young and no I've experienced very little. The above experiences I've related have shaped my opinions.

Of course, Ireland is not as bad as many countries throughout the world as regards many human rights issues.

'recognize that the Irish aren't selling their children as sex slaves or reporting each other to the secret police for gaudy trinkets'

Of course, I agree with you here.

Doesn't change my point that Poland can learn from many mistakes Irish governments made in terms of squandering E.U. funds.

Damien Moran said...

Canon team said:
'I need to say one thing though - People in Ireland - those that emmigrated where the ones standing in lines to cast the vote for almost 3-4 hours. Must say that majority on Civic Platform - so not true what you say.'

what's not true?

22,000 registered. Circa 250,000 live there - I guestimate 4/5's are eligible to vote. Where was the other 80% or so? More ballot boxes and polling stations would have undoubtedly helped, but the vast majority of Polish emigrants living in Ireland did not turn out to vote.

Damien Moran said...

'As far as Ireland goes - is this some lame left wing point the guy is trying to make? This is what infuriates me about me old mates on the Left these days - they are against progress. They would much rather people sat around in mud huts in noble poverty, with a very small carbon foot print, of course.'

I'm a bit behind - am I the guy you are referring to?

Let me clarify: I am not against progress, just unsustainable progress that damages communities heritage and landscapes irrevocably.

Mud huts - in Poland you'll find very few Theodore Kaczynskiites doing this lifestyle? Globally, would you want the Masai to move into 11 story apartment blocs in Kenya's sprawling cities?
And bar the negativism surrounding ngo coined terms like 'carbon footprints,' what's so wrong with trying to lead a life that exploits less, once it's not being hammered down the throats of others.

Regarding my comments on Ireland earlier, they worked a treat in terms of provoking a response;)

Sorry about the multiple comments here - I've been cyber-free all day....phew, what a healthy feeling.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations to Poland. Many problems ahead, but it could have been so much worse.

Anonymous said...

I also hope Poland does not go the way of Ireland. But it's probably too late. The tsk-tsk conversations about how no one can afford to buy a home (subtext "but I own my place so I'm cashing in") that so bored me in 90s Dublin are now boring me in 00s Poland.

Read that twice, please, and tell me exactly where it advocates poverty, corruption, prostitution, drug abuse, slavery etc. etc etc. etc.

More power to Damien.

Anonymous said...

Hey, ya think mad bomber Ted Kaczynski might be related to the Dux in some distant way?

Damien Moran said...

Good ? - Any chance you can do some genealogical research on that side?

beatroot said...

I think ireland is a much better place than the old church going, parochial, poverty ridden backward place it was. They have made great progress and I hope development does the same for Poland.

Anonymous said...

"...old church going, parochial, poverty ridden backward place it was..."

You refer to the '50s, I take it. The 1850s or the 1950s? Or the Land of Priests and Pixies so beloved of Robert Kilroy-Silk?

Anonymous said...

"Progress" and "backwardness" as defined and measured by what? The number or absence of churches? The GNP? Distribution of income levels? Spiritual salvation?

beatroot said...

I was um...exagerating a little. But you know what I mean. It was one of the least developed countries in the EU when it joined. Dublin was a nice, but parochial place. And then 'wham' of the most vibrant capitals in the whole of Europe, and the country has changed for the better in geberal over the past twenty years.

Anonymous said...

No dude, I'm sorry, I don't get your logic.

Rospuda is not about some motorway. We have a situation where a strategic road, connecting Poland to Baltic countries cannot be built, because of some tree-huggers. The funniest part is that the case won support in Western countries. These countries have themselves undertaken really massive devast... um, civil engineering projects (Rhine, for example) and now, they are feeling very concerned about us blowing OUR unique ecosystems. Because they have blown up theirs and are happy with it, but God forbid us from blowing up our own stuff.

So they can continue living in their luxury and come to Poland to see our trees if they feel tired with comfort. And preach to the locals that the progress is bad for them, because they would otherwise destroy the trees.

Except we all know that this is not about trees. If these locals really got to developing they would blow us and our overpriced products out of the market. We cannot allow that -- save the trees!

This, my friend, is your mindset.

(Not that I have anything against the trees. Or you for that matter.)

Anonymous said...

What's the big deal about going around Rospuda? I don't think anybody is objecting to bettering the road system. Nor do I think the people who object to the roadway through Rospuda are supportive of other countries' rape of their respective and other countries' immediate environments. Why make it sound as if environmentalists just want to punish and hold back Polish development? Propaganda all is phoney as some bard once warbled. And when you speak of "our" ecosystem, Opamp, I assume you are a human being so the "us" and "them" dichotomy just doesn't cut it. And even in citing "our" ecosystem in reference to Poland, as far as I know nobody ever elected you to speak for all the Polish people, at least some of whom see no problem with a road going around Rospuda. Cheers.

Anonymous said...

Yea BR and I think Poland is generally much better off than under the communists. The availability of paint alone worked wonders as far as I'm concerned.

But how is progress to be defined and measured? Materially only? And even then, how so? Vibrancy. I like that. But how do you assess and measure that?

beatroot said...

Economic development is a base for all other developments. It won't make you hto try and get happy. appy but it will make you live longer and healthier lives and give you enough liesure

And I don;t like this 'rape of the environment' bit. Only humans can be raped - the environment is a thing. It can't give or decline consent.

michael farris said...

As for Rospuda, I don't know of anyone who doesn't want any road at all built (there may be some crazees but they're irrelevant).

For me, the argument isn't between a) road or b) no road. It's between a) road that doesn't do maximum damage to a unique ecosystem and b) one that does.

The present government and maybe the future one absolutely want b) (even though it's longer and more expensive than the original plan that bypassed the most sensitive areas) for purposes that I'm not sure of.

Well, I grew up in a place where highways ended up being in awkward places and followed sometimes strange routes (but which 'just happened' to create the maximum benefit for local powers that be). So I assume something similar is going on here (quick call CBA!)

Damien Moran said...

'Economic development is a base for all other developments.'

Exactly, it is 'a' base. There are many others too. Educational development is a base for economic development. Economic development is base for heart disease, obesity, avarice, the atomisation of the individual as well as the wide-ranging benefits it provides one to have.

The Song of the Bird, Anthony de Mello:
The Northern rich industrialist is horrified to discover the lazy-assed Southern fisherman lying down, chilling out beside his boat, smoking a pipe.

"Why aren’t you fishing?" the fat capitalist asks (fat capitalist is my term...sorry Anthony).
"Because I have caught enough fish for the day," the fisherman responds.
"Why don’t you catch some more?"
"What would I do with it?"
"You could earn more money, was the reply. You could put a motor on your boat and go into deeper waters and catch more fish. Then you would make enough to buy nylon nets, which would bring you more fish and more money. Soon you’d have enough money to own two boats…maybe even a fleet of boats. Then you’d be a rich man like me."

"What would I do then?" the fisherman inquires.

"Then you would enjoy life," says the smiling industrialist.

"What do you think I’m doing right now?" answers the fisherman.
Re. the use of the word 'rape' connected to the environment. The word as you well know has many meanings, not just the more commonly one you have defined.

Earth has been often regarded as female (Gaia) and the destruction of earth as 'rape'.

The term originally comes from the latin 'rapere' meaning 'to seize, carry away forcefully, abduct' and was rarely applied to sexual acts of misconduct.

But terms such as destruction, or harmful stripping away are just as effective when speaking about the environment.

Damien Moran said...

Michael, you hit the property speculators on the head with them remarks.

As regards PO's wet dream of making Poland as economically prosperous as Ireland, etc. I think it would be really interesting for folks here to pick up copy of Irish economist and broadcaster David McWilliams book 'The Pope's Children.' McW. is a die hard capitalist but he gives an excellent insight into the adverse affects of Ireland's economic growth and how it has affected our characters. I'll lend it to anyone who is interested.

I would also like to hear what
Irish specialist Prof. Wawrzyniec Konarski ('Profile')
has to say on PO's aspirations and how he thinks Poland can learn from Ireland's mistakes and while adopting it's success of low unemployment, etc.

Any chance our correspondent could do an interview with him?

beatroot said...

Wow - Wawrzyniec is a real olde Polish name. I work with someone who is a PhD from that place and check the guy out.

beatroot said...

Looks like Rospuda is sorted. No road through Rospuda, it will come straight to Warsaw.

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