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The script, the cunning and the stupidity

Cornel Codiţă (Translated by Cosmin Ghidoveanu)
Editorial /

The script, the cunning and the stupidity

Romanian politics has started rolling downhill, like a boulder. Everyone is wondering: where and how it's going to stop? Good question, it's just that politics, you see, even in Romania, is a bit more complex than a boulder. It's more like a play, or a movie, if you will. With actors, players, suits and props. Of course, that's not enough. Everybody knows that nothing moves in the world of characters and masks without a script. Somebody needs to write it, somebody needs to put into play. It's not the precise identity of the two pillars of the work that matters, but the script.

Immediately, under the temporary title "Showtime 2019", you can read in brackets (shock, awe, barbecue smell!). The shock comes of course, from the break up of the government coalition. Mr. Tăriceanu, crushed between his Duty to the Country and the Love of Freedom, truth and welfare of the people, has made his choice. He has made the choice not to be in the government, nor to be in the Cotroceni palace. I mean, we've heard about the proverbial win-win choices, but far less often about neither-nor? Maybe it wasn't a smart choice. Or maybe it wasn't even a choice at all! The gesture of Mr. Tăriceanu feels more like a jump from a cliff, than one into the swimming pool. In one shot he's lost his seat of chairman of the Senate, has most certainly lost the Parliamentary immunity that the PSD has fought for tooth and nail for so long, and to add insult to injury, he has also lost any illusions he may have harbored that he would be successful in trading his Senate seat for the one in Cotroceni. If that isn't political suicide, then what is?!! Fear is the word among the MPs, ministers and the plethora of people holed up in administrative positions based on party membership and affiliation to the right posse. Perhaps if the over-rehashed government of Mrs. Dăncilă goes belly up, early elections will be called! OK...everybody knows it's not possible, but....what if it is? And, even if it is not possible, what will happen to their term, if they keep stumbling from one government crisis into the next, up until the next elections, what will happen to their fortune gathering?! The second chapter in the script is the famous Hamlet monologue adapted to match Iohannis, with Iohannis himself playing the role. To be or not to be .... head of "my government", like he was so obsessed with.

Sleeping... wait, no that part has been overdone throughout the current term. We can now move on to "dreaming". Iohannis may know what his dream should be, but the problem is how to figure out whether his dream would come true with the help of the PSD in charge of the government, during the elections for Cotroceni, or rather with somebody else. With who else, then? With the PNL, of course! And that's where everything falls apart, because that party is the only that can snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, including failing to secure the future term of Iohannis in the Cotroceni. So, what then...? Is the devil you know better? A minority government of the PSD, backed by the "President's division" in the Parliament? They get their cut and your term is safe! After that, who cares who wins the parliamentary elections? Iohannis certainly doesn't, because he already has the experience of cohabitating with the PSD in his first term, which it would be a shame to waste precisely in the second term...right?

But the trick is not the deal between the Cotroceni and Victoria palaces, which is so predictable, but the attempt by some surprise actors. Literally, in the case of one of them. These people are part of the play, following an older script written not for Romania, but for Ukraine, but if it worked in Kyiv, why wouldn't it work in Bucharest? The trick is simple. People are sick of the stuffed puppets of the system and they want something more life-like, like in the movies! And what could be more movie-like, than an actor! They've had one make the rounds in the square, they've walked another one around to get some air, and now a third one has appeared! The president-actor! And it's funny, but Mr. Tăriceanu, who up until two or three weeks ago would cling to his own candidacy tooth and nail and actually thought he would be able to persuade Mrs. Dăncilă to let him run for president for the PSD in her stead, is now backing the "actor".

That's where the stupidity part begins (mental and behavioral inadequacy in dealing with a problem!). The stupidity of those who are ready to play a script that's so washed up, the stupidity of Tăriceanu who didn't know when to yield, not when to cling to the straw that led him to the top of the wave, the stupidity of Dăncilă who thinks that playing both ends is the key to the big political successes and of course, the stupidity of the PNL which can't even find the traps laid out for it to step in them.



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