Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Playing the homo-bogeyman card

In their new found zeal to get opt out amendments into the EU Lisbon Treaty currently going through the Polish Parliament, Lech, Jaroslaw Kaczynski and co have raised the specter that is haunting...well, not Europe, but the fantasies of the main opposition party – Brussels is going to force gay marriages on Poland!


Despite voting, with only just over fifty against, for the first reading of the Lisbon Treaty Ratification Bill, the Polish parliament has rocked with bitter arguments over amendments tabled by the Law and Justice party, demanding British style opt outs from the Fundamental Rights Charter, which guarantees certain rights throughout the EU.

Law and Justice, led by Jaroslaw Kaczynski – who has realised that his party have some power over the issue as the government needs some of his MPs to vote with them to get the bill through parliament and onto the table of the President – have also, rather bizarrely, demanded the preamble to the old Constitutional Treaty be put back in.

It was this preamble on universal European values which caused so much trouble to Brussels last time and has now been ditched by nervous Eurocrats and governments desperate to get the now renamed ‘Lisbon Treaty’ quietly through national legislators.

Party political broadcast on behalf of the lame duck party

Last night, President Lech Kaczynski went on two public TV channels (a very good argument for privatisation of both of them, if you ask me) and made what was, in essence, a party political broadcast in favour of the opposition. Against sentimental music from a 1970s Polish TV series, he warned, darkly, that the Lisbon Treaty would open up Poland to Germans wanting back property confiscated after WW II.

The Lisbon Treaty would also bring ‘homosexual marriages’ to Poland, says the Prez. As he said this a clip of video came on showing two men getting married (photo).

Unfortunately, it was a film of two Canadian men getting married, not Europeans. Oops! And one of the men has complained to the Polish ambassador in Canada about his image being used in anti-homosexual propaganda. Double oops!

PM Donald Tusk has called Kaczynski’s antics ‘anti-European’. Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski was in parliament this morning reading out bits of the treaty which guarantee that social legislation, such as abortion or gay marriage, will be left, as it is now, to national parliaments to decide.

But no matter – here is an issue where Law and Justice can consolidate its more nationalist electoral base and relive the good old days when they had some power over public life.

So the Kaczynskis playing the ‘gay card’ was pathetically predictable. All the more pathetic when you realise that the Lisbon Treaty, which governments signed back in December, was supported back then by one President Lech Kaczynski, who is now saying he will veto the bill if he thinks that Poland will lose its sovereignty over certain issues – such as banning gay civil unions.

So why support the treaty in the first place then, Lech?

The government has threatened new elections if Law and Justice continue to obstruct the bill. Law and Justice would be annihilated in such a poll. And today there was also a suggestion that a referendum would be called if the bill is blocked, a move supported by the Left Democrats – and this blog, for that matter. Should idiots such as the above be able to decide these things?


michael farris said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

Aren't the Ducks gay anyway??

I haven't been to Poland recently but it sure starts sounding like the fascist Rzeczpospolita of 1918-1939. I would not be surprised if the country got taken over by a military junta and launched an offensive against Russia... The nationalistic rhetoric seems to be on the rise and I find the young generation of Poles (20-25 yrs old) totally contaminated with those kinds of notions. I spoke recently with 2 law students from UW and was appalled by the lack of skill that would allow them to argue issues based on reason and logic. It's very disconcerting and I'm struggling with the notion that the Polish society is once again proving to be self-destructive and actively alienating itself from its European neighbors. I hope somebody can convince me that it ain't so.

beatroot said...

I think you are misunderstanding the situation a little, Heat. The 'populists' etc are marginalized at the moment. All they have is Kaczynskis. But they are in a minority here.

I would welcome a referendum on this, but not for nationalist, anti-homo, anti-German reasons. That is getting in the way in making a case for a referendum.

varus said...

Heat_Seeker, i regularly teach both young adults and adults and can confidently say that the nationalism you speak of is not the norm. For that matter most people i converse with are thoroughly against PiS and their minions.

That said, there does still exist a rear-echelon of phobia loving gimboids who prefer to distance themselves from Europe rather than engage with it.

Br, perhaps the duel nature of PiS is due to the effect of Rydzyk and his cronies as i wrote about on my blog. They have immense power when it comes to PiS and have recently shown that they still can pull the strings.

beatroot said...

Varus is talking about his post here that does add something to this issue.


beatroot said...

On the news this morning they were refering to another mistake in the President's video nasty. The flag behind him was hung upside down...so turning the POlish flag into Indonesian or something.

It is unbelievable...the man must have fools for a support team.

michael farris said...

Are we sure Jacek Kurski isn't a mole for the other side? It would surely explain an awful lot.

Anonymous said...

If anybody comes across the upside down Polish flag on youtube, please post the url.

Maybe with the upside down flag he was signaling distress.

beatroot said...

Ot he was on the vodka again (allegedly...)

Anonymous said...

Forget the referendum, if there is an impasse, then go to an election, in the current climate the PO would likely gain a majority. The referendum may require a minimum turn out and that perhaps may not happen. Tusk could argue legitimately that the Pis and the President are making governance impossible.

What’s happening here is not about the treaty as far the ducks go, it’s an internal struggle for the survival and control of the Pis. Because the ducks cannot put together enough moderate support they depend on the religious and nationalists extremes. These are Poland’s forces of darkness, the medieval rural mindset that view contact with the outside world as dangerous and modernity as evil.

Someone should be asking why the Polish Church and the Vatican, which made pronouncements about reigning in Teddy Rydzyk and direct church involvement in the political process, are now standing by silently. The Polish Catholic church is directly disregarding the authority of the Pope? This situation is due to the internal weakness of the church in Poland where different factions are in conflict. That coupled with the informers and sexual abusers scandals, the hierarchy are in a state of paralysis.

Tusk has been handed an opportunity to drive a stake through the heart of the Pis, he just needs the balls to do it.

varus said...

The opportunity is sure enough there, but will the voters forgive Tusk for all the hassle that an election would entail?

beatroot said...

It depends, like Jan says, if he can put the argument accross successfully that PiS are out to wreck all government in Poland.

One way would be to combine a referendum WITH an election...that way he would get the turnout and win the refrerendum.

But the struggle within PiS goes right to the top. There is a struggle between Jaroslaw and Lech too, I would say. Jaroslaw is the boss in that relationship as we are seeing. I think Lech would quite like to think of himself as the Lisbon Man...looks good. But jaroslaw, the political operator, has other ideas.

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