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    It's 51.4% Zeman vs. 48.6% Drahos. Things seemed dire for Zeman ten days ago, but he scraped by thanks to Drahos having the charisma of a damp rag and the appearance of a low-grade bank clerk (to steal a phrase from Farage). Map. Drahos got 68.8% in Prague, and 90.3% amongst Czechs voting abroad (including...
  • Czech Republic has small military unit in Afghanistan. Soldiers voted at Bagram base, 99 in the first round, 98 in second round.

    Unlike typical Czech living abroad they preferred Zeman. He got 46% in the first round and 60% in the second.

    https://www.volby.cz/pls/prez2018/pe311?xjazyk=CZ&xobec=999997&xsvetadil=AS&xzeme=4&xokrsek=78

    Diplomats and do-gooders in Kabul preferred Drahoš (59%).

    https://www.volby.cz/pls/prez2018/pe311?xjazyk=CZ&xobec=999997&xsvetadil=AS&xzeme=4&xokrsek=77

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  • While your IQ to liberal-globalist support correlation is very strong, I think it’s purely coincidental.

    Capitals are usually IQ magnets, but also Starbucks, craft beer, soy milk and genderless lumberjacks magnets. All my Navalny supporting acquaintances fit that category, doing everything I just mentioned, have mediocre desk jokeys jobs and, most importantly, not particulary bright or politically savvy.

    Smart people I know, are either very reserved and cautious in politics or straight up Putin supporters. Pretty much most of IT in my decade+ experience in Moscow is generally pro-Putin, conservative and yet they are mostly cognitive elite (atleast in technical sense)

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  • @22pp22
    Where are you from originally?

    NZ-born, from Wellington, a rather nicer city than Auckland (still incredulous at how shabby much of this city is). I scorned JAFAs for years, then mutated into one within months of moving here.

    I live in the CBD itself, where the concentration of foreigners, resident or otherwise, is highest. Workspace is full of foreigners, and all the service staff in the shops are foreign too. On some days I hear more German or Portugese spoken on the street than English, never mind Chinese. True, things are different in Takapuna, or even across the harbour in Devonport, but I seldom leave central except for church, and there I usually meet only Russian migrants (plus Ukrainians, Georgians and occasional Kazakhs and Uzbeks).

    True enough about Southland, but for years I’ve spreading absurd stories the South Island in an attempt to scare foreigners away from this country, and I would encourage you to do the same – One Auckland is quite enough to be going on with.

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  • @Pavlo
    Tempted to scoff at the notion, but I haven't visited the South Island in years and in Auckland I go for months at a time without even speaking to a New Zealander, so you may be right.

    Where are you from originally?

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    • Replies: @Pavlo
    NZ-born, from Wellington, a rather nicer city than Auckland (still incredulous at how shabby much of this city is). I scorned JAFAs for years, then mutated into one within months of moving here.

    I live in the CBD itself, where the concentration of foreigners, resident or otherwise, is highest. Workspace is full of foreigners, and all the service staff in the shops are foreign too. On some days I hear more German or Portugese spoken on the street than English, never mind Chinese. True, things are different in Takapuna, or even across the harbour in Devonport, but I seldom leave central except for church, and there I usually meet only Russian migrants (plus Ukrainians, Georgians and occasional Kazakhs and Uzbeks).

    True enough about Southland, but for years I've spreading absurd stories the South Island in an attempt to scare foreigners away from this country, and I would encourage you to do the same - One Auckland is quite enough to be going on with.
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  • @Pavlo
    Tempted to scoff at the notion, but I haven't visited the South Island in years and in Auckland I go for months at a time without even speaking to a New Zealander, so you may be right.
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  • @Pavlo
    Tempted to scoff at the notion, but I haven't visited the South Island in years and in Auckland I go for months at a time without even speaking to a New Zealander, so you may be right.

    I last visited Auckland in 2014. I spent a month in Takapuna. Auckland is your typical anywhere city with a diverse population, but I don’t know how you managed to avoid speaking to a Kiwi. I thought Pakeha looked like a majority in Takapuna, although they are a minority in the whole city as South Auckland is overwhelmingly Polynesian.

    Last time I looked, Otago had the best school grades and Southland was the richest province per capita.

    That is in spite of the fact that the highest paying jobs in any country tend to be concentrated in the major cities and Southland doesn’t have too many of those.

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  • @22pp22
    I believe in IQ as a metric, but with reservations

    I spent most of my life working in elite universities. If society had collapsed, my colleagues would have starved.

    I now live in a small town in New Zealand in the middle of nowhere. I would trust the locals in Central Otago to rebuild civilization within two generations.

    Tempted to scoff at the notion, but I haven’t visited the South Island in years and in Auckland I go for months at a time without even speaking to a New Zealander, so you may be right.

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    • Replies: @22pp22
    I last visited Auckland in 2014. I spent a month in Takapuna. Auckland is your typical anywhere city with a diverse population, but I don't know how you managed to avoid speaking to a Kiwi. I thought Pakeha looked like a majority in Takapuna, although they are a minority in the whole city as South Auckland is overwhelmingly Polynesian.

    Last time I looked, Otago had the best school grades and Southland was the richest province per capita.

    That is in spite of the fact that the highest paying jobs in any country tend to be concentrated in the major cities and Southland doesn't have too many of those.

    , @22pp22
    Bogans are not as bad as JAFAs make them out to be.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/72699448/southland-earnings-highest-in-new-zealand
    , @22pp22
    Where are you from originally?
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  • @Prokop
    Anatoly is right. The main factors were age and education. Zeman won among the people over 50 years old and people without the high school leaving exam (called maturita in Czech, an analogue of the German Abitur). Among the people under 50 and people with at least the maturita, Drahoš won.

    But he was implying that it was IQ. My point is that if you define IQ like that, it doesn’t correlate with actual practical intelligence. Maybe people who had aptitude and tested highly when younger were more likely to vote for Drahos, but their actual applied IQ looks worse than for Zeman voters. They believe a lot of nonsense and are easier to manipulate by the media – how does that match high IQ? Test is just a test, intelligence has to be applied in a critical way.

    Unless you also think that over 50 people have lower IQ than people under 50, the age argument also doesn’t correlate with IQ.

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  • @Jaakko Raipala
    They don't need to win elections if they have media, academia and culture domination to the point where the right-wing just decides that it's easier to surrender to the left's social agenda and focus right-wing efforts entirely on a zealous advocacy of tax cuts and the like.

    Finnish presidential election tonight. The Greens have an openly homosexual open borders, pro-color-revolutions, anti-Bush-wars but pro-Obama-wars activist who will get maybe 10 %. The nationalists have a young female who looks good on TV but becomes embarrassing as soon as she opens her mouth (she is a creationist, ugh).

    The cuckservative mainstream right-wing sitting President will win and he will never oppose the globalist agenda that actually didn't win the election. Eastern Europeans will be in the same situation in a decade or two if they just focus on beating liberal globalists in elections instead of developing a culture to match them in media and academia.

    Finnish nationalists have a young female who looks good on TV

    She does, I saw her, ‘creation’ has worked for her. I would forgive her some religious zealotry. What is she going to do, pray in the presidential palace? People should strip out the non-essential stuff when voting.

    focus on beating liberal globalists in elections instead of developing a culture to match them in media and academia

    I agree, but that is very hard, probably not possible. The institutions don’t run on ‘voting’ or even basic fairness. And any success is too far in the future to make any difference. In the next economic downturn, we might see violence between the liberal centre and the provincials. It has happened before. I don’t think the current trends are sustainable. You can’t simultaneously replace large part of the population, lower their living standards (especially among young males), and force feed them some trans-humanity, non-gender, new identity. When the honourable institutions will cease to be relevant, the real sh..t will start. They only have themselves to blame.

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  • @Mitleser

    In the parliament, as the head of its education committee, he started to dismantle the crazy progressive reforms introduced to Czech school system by the previous social-democratic government.
     
    Sounds like a really good guy.
    Hope he remains successful.

    In spite of, or perhaps because of, his own experience as an elite educationalist, Klaus Jr.’s theories on education are very bad. If he can succeed in dismantling the social democrats’ recent experimentations (awful), he will indeed be the makings of a national hero, provided he can refrain from substituting his own.

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  • @Anatoly Karlin

    I don’t think the reason is IQ. Some of the smartest people I know are well-adjusted provincials with no desire to see the world. We have a split between people who live off globalism in one form or another (Prague is a classical example), and the people who don’t.
     
    Yes, sure, these people can be pretty close-minded (though conservatives are more close-minded on average), and are certainly far snobbier.

    Unfortunately, they're still smarter (on average), and have greater life success on most metrics.

    Incidentally, I would note that even in Prague, Drahos scored his highest percentage (almost 80%) in Prague 1, the site of Charles University. This is even higher than in places like Lysolaje and Troja, which judging from Google Maps I imagine are inhabited by millionaires.

    They have no place to go – unless they themselves emigrate. I suspect it is similar in Moscow.
     
    Yes, Moscow certainly has no shortage of such characters.

    Anatoly is right. The main factors were age and education. Zeman won among the people over 50 years old and people without the high school leaving exam (called maturita in Czech, an analogue of the German Abitur). Among the people under 50 and people with at least the maturita, Drahoš won.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Beckow
    But he was implying that it was IQ. My point is that if you define IQ like that, it doesn't correlate with actual practical intelligence. Maybe people who had aptitude and tested highly when younger were more likely to vote for Drahos, but their actual applied IQ looks worse than for Zeman voters. They believe a lot of nonsense and are easier to manipulate by the media - how does that match high IQ? Test is just a test, intelligence has to be applied in a critical way.

    Unless you also think that over 50 people have lower IQ than people under 50, the age argument also doesn't correlate with IQ.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Applebaums husband was the Brexiteers secret weapon

    l‘Now, to change that, you’ve either got to change it with other European countries at the moment, or potentially change it through the treaty change that I’ll be putting in place before the referendum we will hold on Britain’s membership of the EU by the end of 2017.’

    But today Mr Sikorski hit back, writing on Twitter: ‘If Britain gets our taxpayers, shouldn’t it also pay their benefits? Why should Polish taxpayers subsidise British taxpayers’ children?’

    He added: ‘UK social security rules apply to all resident EU citizens. No need to stigmatise Poles. What about British children abroad?’
    Mr Cameron made clear that stopping migrant workers in the UK from claiming child benefit for their offspring back home would be a key demand of his plans to renegotiate a fresh deal with the EU before staging an in-out referendum by 2017.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2534738/Poland-hits-Cameron-plan-stop-child-benefit-exported-EU.html#ixzz55VBMUXxq
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

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  • In the parliament, as the head of its education committee, he started to dismantle the crazy progressive reforms introduced to Czech school system by the previous social-democratic government.

    Sounds like a really good guy.
    Hope he remains successful.

    Read More
    • Replies: @ERM
    In spite of, or perhaps because of, his own experience as an elite educationalist, Klaus Jr.'s theories on education are very bad. If he can succeed in dismantling the social democrats' recent experimentations (awful), he will indeed be the makings of a national hero, provided he can refrain from substituting his own.
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  • Since this is a rare discussion about the Czech Republic, I would like to draw attention to one rising Czech political star, Václav Klaus Junior.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Václav_Klaus_Jr.

    He is son of former Czech PM & President Klaus. With high pitched voice and hideously deformed face (screw-up during childbirth) he makes unlike political star. For many years Klaus Jr. worked as a teacher and director of a posh high school, and didn’t care much about the politics.

    Two years ago he started to write opinion columns for a left-center newspaper. He ranted against immigration, against the EU (he wants to leave right now) and against every progressive idea one can think about. These columns got really popular.

    Last autumn he was elected into the parliament, as member of the party his father founded. He got the largest number of preferential votes. Frightened incompetent old party hands try to keep this ambitious newcomer down, but eventually he may take the party over. Or create a new party, or take over the existing anti-immigration party where he would fit quite well. Everything is possible.

    In the parliament, as the head of its education committee, he started to dismantle the crazy progressive reforms introduced to Czech school system by the previous social-democratic government.

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  • @Mitleser
    Intellectual cucked leaders compensate by importing foreigners who weaken the educational system.

    Many of those born or growing up in Salzgitter say they want to help refugees but that the influx has become too big to handle. Concerns range from the impact on schools to rising welfare costs, crime, and a diffuse sense that the local culture is becoming diluted, defeating the purpose of integration.

    “There are permanently fights and the police have to come,” said Gülcan Dia, a 46-year-old German of Turkish heritage who works for a charity helping refugees. Wherever refugees outnumber German children in schools, critics like Ms. Dia say, they find it harder to learn German. Local pupils, too, are falling behind on the curriculum. A national school report released Friday showed a correlation between rising numbers of migrant schoolchildren and a deterioration in academic performance. In 2016, the share of foreign fourth-graders rose by one third to 34% from 2011, according to the education ministry, while the number of children who passed standard writing requirements dropped to 55% against 65% five years earlier.
     
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/german-towns-filled-with-refugees-ask-who-is-integrating-whom-1508074522

    Tell that to high IQ (but stupid) Hungarian virtue signallers who can read English and read The Economist and think that what you wrote is Orbán’s or Putin’s fake propaganda. We know they and their descendants are better off under Orbán, but they are too short sighted to see that and can only see the corruption and the stupid football stadiums under Orbán, and that the West is so much richer.

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  • @truthman
    Any insight about Zeman's areas of strength. He did really well in Northern Moravia.

    People who are not happy with current politics: those who fear immigration (this was the major point), those who do not want euro (they fear getting Greeced), people who are fed up by mainstream pro-EU propaganda. Those who do not like political NGOs.

    People from economically depressed regions (outside Prague and few large cities). Especially northern parts of Bohemia and Moravia.

    People who are pro-guns (this was discussed in one TV debate).

    Parents who do not like the recent law about inclusion of feral gypsies into elementary schools.

    People who saw that Drahoš is merely empty suit with no political programme, no ideas, unable to speak in public.

    Probably more interesting is why someone would vote for the empty suit Drahoš. He represents utopia many still dream about, the EU utopia. Especially young people at universities hope for big European career. Prague is full of people who make killing by plundering EU funds, full of bureaucrats employed in countless “European departments”, full of NGOs financed by the EU. All these people fear Zeman, that he may destroy their current or future livelihood.

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  • @reiner Tor
    I tried to search, but couldn’t find anything.

    The problem is that for Orbán football is a hobby, but education is not, neither is science. Even based leaders are unfortunately less intellectual than cucked leaders, and so they will naturally appeal more to less intelligent people, even if that wasn’t a natural tendency in the first place.

    Intellectual cucked leaders compensate by importing foreigners who weaken the educational system.

    Many of those born or growing up in Salzgitter say they want to help refugees but that the influx has become too big to handle. Concerns range from the impact on schools to rising welfare costs, crime, and a diffuse sense that the local culture is becoming diluted, defeating the purpose of integration.

    “There are permanently fights and the police have to come,” said Gülcan Dia, a 46-year-old German of Turkish heritage who works for a charity helping refugees. Wherever refugees outnumber German children in schools, critics like Ms. Dia say, they find it harder to learn German. Local pupils, too, are falling behind on the curriculum. A national school report released Friday showed a correlation between rising numbers of migrant schoolchildren and a deterioration in academic performance. In 2016, the share of foreign fourth-graders rose by one third to 34% from 2011, according to the education ministry, while the number of children who passed standard writing requirements dropped to 55% against 65% five years earlier.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/german-towns-filled-with-refugees-ask-who-is-integrating-whom-1508074522

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    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    Tell that to high IQ (but stupid) Hungarian virtue signallers who can read English and read The Economist and think that what you wrote is Orbán’s or Putin’s fake propaganda. We know they and their descendants are better off under Orbán, but they are too short sighted to see that and can only see the corruption and the stupid football stadiums under Orbán, and that the West is so much richer.
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  • @German_reader
    Is he so physically decrepit that he has to walk with a cane? That would make his victory somewhat more impressive imo.
    But yes, the general dumbness of nationalists is a problem.

    Zeman has diabetic neuropathy, problems with walking. His intellect is untouched, in TV debates he crushed his opponent without effort. It was like watching cobra playing with a little bunny.

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  • @neutral
    Zeman vs Femen
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XbIAiyP00Y4

    Zeman won in the end, there can be zero doubts that the funding for these kind of stunts come from Soros. The strange thing with that incident is that the Femen woman was not even white.

    I think that Femen attack may have been crucial in putting Zeman over the top. Rather than highlighting how physically decrepit he really is, it succeeded in garnering sympathy for a frail old man unfairly attacked by a gibbering foreign lunatic. I think it almost certainly boosted his standing among Czech women, who used to be prone to maternally clucking over poor dear Havel when he was running into things or wearing his trousers backward and so on.

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  • @Mitleser
    Well done, you have me convinced that Orbán made a big mistake.
    How trusted are your schools?
    In Germany, schools were trusted by 63% at the end of 2017, 8% less than one year ago.
    https://www.presseportal.de/pm/72183/3828545

    I tried to search, but couldn’t find anything.

    The problem is that for Orbán football is a hobby, but education is not, neither is science. Even based leaders are unfortunately less intellectual than cucked leaders, and so they will naturally appeal more to less intelligent people, even if that wasn’t a natural tendency in the first place.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mitleser
    Intellectual cucked leaders compensate by importing foreigners who weaken the educational system.

    Many of those born or growing up in Salzgitter say they want to help refugees but that the influx has become too big to handle. Concerns range from the impact on schools to rising welfare costs, crime, and a diffuse sense that the local culture is becoming diluted, defeating the purpose of integration.

    “There are permanently fights and the police have to come,” said Gülcan Dia, a 46-year-old German of Turkish heritage who works for a charity helping refugees. Wherever refugees outnumber German children in schools, critics like Ms. Dia say, they find it harder to learn German. Local pupils, too, are falling behind on the curriculum. A national school report released Friday showed a correlation between rising numbers of migrant schoolchildren and a deterioration in academic performance. In 2016, the share of foreign fourth-graders rose by one third to 34% from 2011, according to the education ministry, while the number of children who passed standard writing requirements dropped to 55% against 65% five years earlier.
     
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/german-towns-filled-with-refugees-ask-who-is-integrating-whom-1508074522
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  • @reiner Tor
    I know of previously apolitical teachers becoming hardcore leftists over the past few years. People react to incentives, I’m sure less of them would be working to undermine Orbán and his government if their self-interests were well served by keeping him in power.

    There is also a growing anti-Orbán movement among students, including high school students. While it’s undoubtedly pushed by parents and teachers, it’s made very easy by the fact that Orbán seems willing to shortchange their education in favor of dumb soccer players who then don’t even win much. The fact that education spending doesn’t much influence life outcomes is neither here nor there, because most people don’t know it, and if you tell them, won’t believe it. “Orbán wants us to stay dumb!” is an effective slogan.

    Because our football teams perform poorly at the international stage (be it international football or Europa League or Champions League), it also makes Orbán look incompetent.

    Well done, you have me convinced that Orbán made a big mistake.
    How trusted are your schools?
    In Germany, schools were trusted by 63% at the end of 2017, 8% less than one year ago.

    https://www.presseportal.de/pm/72183/3828545

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    I tried to search, but couldn’t find anything.

    The problem is that for Orbán football is a hobby, but education is not, neither is science. Even based leaders are unfortunately less intellectual than cucked leaders, and so they will naturally appeal more to less intelligent people, even if that wasn’t a natural tendency in the first place.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Anatoly Karlin

    There is also a growing anti-Orbán movement among students, including high school students.
     
    Interesting. One curious feature of Russian protests in this electoral cycle is that high school students seem to be really noticeable (whereas in 2011-12 it was dominated by "office plankton").

    My inner conspiracy theorist just thought something.

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  • @reiner Tor
    I know of previously apolitical teachers becoming hardcore leftists over the past few years. People react to incentives, I’m sure less of them would be working to undermine Orbán and his government if their self-interests were well served by keeping him in power.

    There is also a growing anti-Orbán movement among students, including high school students. While it’s undoubtedly pushed by parents and teachers, it’s made very easy by the fact that Orbán seems willing to shortchange their education in favor of dumb soccer players who then don’t even win much. The fact that education spending doesn’t much influence life outcomes is neither here nor there, because most people don’t know it, and if you tell them, won’t believe it. “Orbán wants us to stay dumb!” is an effective slogan.

    Because our football teams perform poorly at the international stage (be it international football or Europa League or Champions League), it also makes Orbán look incompetent.

    There is also a growing anti-Orbán movement among students, including high school students.

    Interesting. One curious feature of Russian protests in this electoral cycle is that high school students seem to be really noticeable (whereas in 2011-12 it was dominated by “office plankton”).

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    My inner conspiracy theorist just thought something.
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  • @Beckow
    One of the best predictors in voting for Zeman vs. Drahos was knowledge of foreign languages. Among the Czech-language-only speakers, Zeman won extremely big. The industrial northern Moravia, industrial north-west (former Sudeten), and the hilly provincial central farming region between Bohemia and Moravia, were Zeman's strongholds. You better speak Czech if you plan to visit there.

    I don't think the reason is IQ. Some of the smartest people I know are well-adjusted provincials with no desire to see the world. We have a split between people who live off globalism in one form or another (Prague is a classical example), and the people who don't. Globalism is a very broad economic concept and most universities, culture circles and capital cities' dwellers are automatically pulled into it. They support globo-liberal policies because it benefits them. In many ways they are very stupid people, impractical, useless, and unable to provide for the future. But they are dependent on globalism for their jobs, lifestyle and meaning in life. Many literally don't know how to do anything but speak some foreign language and are verbally gifted. They will defend open borders, 'Atlantic' solidarity and weird social mores until the end. They have no place to go - unless they themselves emigrate. I suspect it is similar in Moscow.

    If you think Drahos is 'smart', just try to talk to him. You immediately hit a mental wall of hardened liberal-globalist stupidity that doesn't suggest a high applied IQ (maybe the aptitude was there at the beginning, but it led to nothing). Watch the Jordan Peterson Channel 4 discussion (Jan 16) to see how the oh-so-smart-high-IQ interviewer completely fails even the most basic practical intelligence test. This is the way they are, they don't think much about anything, so what is the 'high IQ' all about?

    In the 16th century Nostradamus predicted that mankind will eventually divide between international rich allied with each other with no nation to call their own - and everyone else. And they will fight each other. I don't really take Nostradamus seriously, but the observation is valid, it fits what has been happening.

    I don’t think the reason is IQ. Some of the smartest people I know are well-adjusted provincials with no desire to see the world. We have a split between people who live off globalism in one form or another (Prague is a classical example), and the people who don’t.

    Yes, sure, these people can be pretty close-minded (though conservatives are more close-minded on average), and are certainly far snobbier.

    Unfortunately, they’re still smarter (on average), and have greater life success on most metrics.

    Incidentally, I would note that even in Prague, Drahos scored his highest percentage (almost 80%) in Prague 1, the site of Charles University. This is even higher than in places like Lysolaje and Troja, which judging from Google Maps I imagine are inhabited by millionaires.

    They have no place to go – unless they themselves emigrate. I suspect it is similar in Moscow.

    Yes, Moscow certainly has no shortage of such characters.

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    • Replies: @Prokop
    Anatoly is right. The main factors were age and education. Zeman won among the people over 50 years old and people without the high school leaving exam (called maturita in Czech, an analogue of the German Abitur). Among the people under 50 and people with at least the maturita, Drahoš won.
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  • @Dmitry

    Putin actually often loses, which would be unthinkable anywhere else in Russia.
     
    There was a strong possibility that Putin lost in 2012 in the Israeli voting. Although this was only based on an internet survey, which isn't necessarily representative sample of the demographics that actually voted (only around half of the readership who took part were eligible to vote).

    http://www.newsru.co.il/israel/22feb2012/vybory_pr_106.html

    No, he didn’t, but it was close, and he lost in much of the West (blue = Putin, green = Prokhorov):

    In San Francisco, it was 57% Prokhorov vs. 27% for Putin, which is even better than for the US as a whole (lots of Silicon Valley types there).

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  • @Anatoly Karlin
    I think so, yes - at least if these Czech electoral patterns are comparable to Russian ones. (In Moscow districts, correlations between education level vs. voting for Putin - if you're poorly educated; for the liberal candidate - if you're well educated, are better than for wealth vs. voting for Putin/liberal). And in the very smartest regions - e.g., elite university districts - Putin actually often loses, which would be unthinkable anywhere else in Russia.

    Education is one thing, IQ is another. The former is environmental, the latter is innate.

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  • @Mitleser
    Are you certain they would not have indoctrinated them if your leader had invested more money into their salaries?

    I know of previously apolitical teachers becoming hardcore leftists over the past few years. People react to incentives, I’m sure less of them would be working to undermine Orbán and his government if their self-interests were well served by keeping him in power.

    There is also a growing anti-Orbán movement among students, including high school students. While it’s undoubtedly pushed by parents and teachers, it’s made very easy by the fact that Orbán seems willing to shortchange their education in favor of dumb soccer players who then don’t even win much. The fact that education spending doesn’t much influence life outcomes is neither here nor there, because most people don’t know it, and if you tell them, won’t believe it. “Orbán wants us to stay dumb!” is an effective slogan.

    Because our football teams perform poorly at the international stage (be it international football or Europa League or Champions League), it also makes Orbán look incompetent.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    There is also a growing anti-Orbán movement among students, including high school students.
     
    Interesting. One curious feature of Russian protests in this electoral cycle is that high school students seem to be really noticeable (whereas in 2011-12 it was dominated by "office plankton").
    , @Mitleser
    Well done, you have me convinced that Orbán made a big mistake.
    How trusted are your schools?
    In Germany, schools were trusted by 63% at the end of 2017, 8% less than one year ago.
    https://www.presseportal.de/pm/72183/3828545
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @reiner Tor
    This is why I criticized Orbán for spending money on football (soccer), while not spending on education. Teachers were already left wing to begin with, but this all pushed them further to the left, and also raised their commitment to the leftist cause. So they are putting great effort into indoctrinating children with liberalism.

    Are you certain they would not have indoctrinated them if your leader had invested more money into their salaries?

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    I know of previously apolitical teachers becoming hardcore leftists over the past few years. People react to incentives, I’m sure less of them would be working to undermine Orbán and his government if their self-interests were well served by keeping him in power.

    There is also a growing anti-Orbán movement among students, including high school students. While it’s undoubtedly pushed by parents and teachers, it’s made very easy by the fact that Orbán seems willing to shortchange their education in favor of dumb soccer players who then don’t even win much. The fact that education spending doesn’t much influence life outcomes is neither here nor there, because most people don’t know it, and if you tell them, won’t believe it. “Orbán wants us to stay dumb!” is an effective slogan.

    Because our football teams perform poorly at the international stage (be it international football or Europa League or Champions League), it also makes Orbán look incompetent.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Jaakko Raipala
    They don't need to win elections if they have media, academia and culture domination to the point where the right-wing just decides that it's easier to surrender to the left's social agenda and focus right-wing efforts entirely on a zealous advocacy of tax cuts and the like.

    Finnish presidential election tonight. The Greens have an openly homosexual open borders, pro-color-revolutions, anti-Bush-wars but pro-Obama-wars activist who will get maybe 10 %. The nationalists have a young female who looks good on TV but becomes embarrassing as soon as she opens her mouth (she is a creationist, ugh).

    The cuckservative mainstream right-wing sitting President will win and he will never oppose the globalist agenda that actually didn't win the election. Eastern Europeans will be in the same situation in a decade or two if they just focus on beating liberal globalists in elections instead of developing a culture to match them in media and academia.

    This is why I criticized Orbán for spending money on football (soccer), while not spending on education. Teachers were already left wing to begin with, but this all pushed them further to the left, and also raised their commitment to the leftist cause. So they are putting great effort into indoctrinating children with liberalism.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mitleser
    Are you certain they would not have indoctrinated them if your leader had invested more money into their salaries?
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  • @Anatoly Karlin
    I think so, yes - at least if these Czech electoral patterns are comparable to Russian ones. (In Moscow districts, correlations between education level vs. voting for Putin - if you're poorly educated; for the liberal candidate - if you're well educated, are better than for wealth vs. voting for Putin/liberal). And in the very smartest regions - e.g., elite university districts - Putin actually often loses, which would be unthinkable anywhere else in Russia.

    I believe in IQ as a metric, but with reservations

    I spent most of my life working in elite universities. If society had collapsed, my colleagues would have starved.

    I now live in a small town in New Zealand in the middle of nowhere. I would trust the locals in Central Otago to rebuild civilization within two generations.

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    • Replies: @Pavlo
    Tempted to scoff at the notion, but I haven't visited the South Island in years and in Auckland I go for months at a time without even speaking to a New Zealander, so you may be right.
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  • @Beckow
    Zeman won because he went for the jugular. He effectively used the migration issue and Drahos's 'open letter' from 2015 supporting the Merkel-jugend migrants.

    This in spite of what was about 80-90% media and cultural demonisation of Zeman, with the usual artists staging pro-Drahos concerts, etc...

    The reality is that liberal globalists cannot win in an open elections. So they manipulate and cheat, but it is a downward spiral. Next Italy in March... if the lib-socialists win, I will eat my weight in tortellini...if they lose, I think the Brussels game is over.

    They don’t need to win elections if they have media, academia and culture domination to the point where the right-wing just decides that it’s easier to surrender to the left’s social agenda and focus right-wing efforts entirely on a zealous advocacy of tax cuts and the like.

    Finnish presidential election tonight. The Greens have an openly homosexual open borders, pro-color-revolutions, anti-Bush-wars but pro-Obama-wars activist who will get maybe 10 %. The nationalists have a young female who looks good on TV but becomes embarrassing as soon as she opens her mouth (she is a creationist, ugh).

    The cuckservative mainstream right-wing sitting President will win and he will never oppose the globalist agenda that actually didn’t win the election. Eastern Europeans will be in the same situation in a decade or two if they just focus on beating liberal globalists in elections instead of developing a culture to match them in media and academia.

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    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    This is why I criticized Orbán for spending money on football (soccer), while not spending on education. Teachers were already left wing to begin with, but this all pushed them further to the left, and also raised their commitment to the leftist cause. So they are putting great effort into indoctrinating children with liberalism.
    , @Beckow

    Finnish nationalists have a young female who looks good on TV
     
    She does, I saw her, 'creation' has worked for her. I would forgive her some religious zealotry. What is she going to do, pray in the presidential palace? People should strip out the non-essential stuff when voting.

    focus on beating liberal globalists in elections instead of developing a culture to match them in media and academia
     
    I agree, but that is very hard, probably not possible. The institutions don't run on 'voting' or even basic fairness. And any success is too far in the future to make any difference. In the next economic downturn, we might see violence between the liberal centre and the provincials. It has happened before. I don't think the current trends are sustainable. You can't simultaneously replace large part of the population, lower their living standards (especially among young males), and force feed them some trans-humanity, non-gender, new identity. When the honourable institutions will cease to be relevant, the real sh..t will start. They only have themselves to blame.
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  • @Anatoly Karlin
    I think so, yes - at least if these Czech electoral patterns are comparable to Russian ones. (In Moscow districts, correlations between education level vs. voting for Putin - if you're poorly educated; for the liberal candidate - if you're well educated, are better than for wealth vs. voting for Putin/liberal). And in the very smartest regions - e.g., elite university districts - Putin actually often loses, which would be unthinkable anywhere else in Russia.

    One of the best predictors in voting for Zeman vs. Drahos was knowledge of foreign languages. Among the Czech-language-only speakers, Zeman won extremely big. The industrial northern Moravia, industrial north-west (former Sudeten), and the hilly provincial central farming region between Bohemia and Moravia, were Zeman’s strongholds. You better speak Czech if you plan to visit there.

    I don’t think the reason is IQ. Some of the smartest people I know are well-adjusted provincials with no desire to see the world. We have a split between people who live off globalism in one form or another (Prague is a classical example), and the people who don’t. Globalism is a very broad economic concept and most universities, culture circles and capital cities’ dwellers are automatically pulled into it. They support globo-liberal policies because it benefits them. In many ways they are very stupid people, impractical, useless, and unable to provide for the future. But they are dependent on globalism for their jobs, lifestyle and meaning in life. Many literally don’t know how to do anything but speak some foreign language and are verbally gifted. They will defend open borders, ‘Atlantic’ solidarity and weird social mores until the end. They have no place to go – unless they themselves emigrate. I suspect it is similar in Moscow.

    If you think Drahos is ‘smart’, just try to talk to him. You immediately hit a mental wall of hardened liberal-globalist stupidity that doesn’t suggest a high applied IQ (maybe the aptitude was there at the beginning, but it led to nothing). Watch the Jordan Peterson Channel 4 discussion (Jan 16) to see how the oh-so-smart-high-IQ interviewer completely fails even the most basic practical intelligence test. This is the way they are, they don’t think much about anything, so what is the ‘high IQ’ all about?

    In the 16th century Nostradamus predicted that mankind will eventually divide between international rich allied with each other with no nation to call their own – and everyone else. And they will fight each other. I don’t really take Nostradamus seriously, but the observation is valid, it fits what has been happening.

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    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    I don’t think the reason is IQ. Some of the smartest people I know are well-adjusted provincials with no desire to see the world. We have a split between people who live off globalism in one form or another (Prague is a classical example), and the people who don’t.
     
    Yes, sure, these people can be pretty close-minded (though conservatives are more close-minded on average), and are certainly far snobbier.

    Unfortunately, they're still smarter (on average), and have greater life success on most metrics.

    Incidentally, I would note that even in Prague, Drahos scored his highest percentage (almost 80%) in Prague 1, the site of Charles University. This is even higher than in places like Lysolaje and Troja, which judging from Google Maps I imagine are inhabited by millionaires.

    They have no place to go – unless they themselves emigrate. I suspect it is similar in Moscow.
     
    Yes, Moscow certainly has no shortage of such characters.
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  • @Anatoly Karlin
    I think so, yes - at least if these Czech electoral patterns are comparable to Russian ones. (In Moscow districts, correlations between education level vs. voting for Putin - if you're poorly educated; for the liberal candidate - if you're well educated, are better than for wealth vs. voting for Putin/liberal). And in the very smartest regions - e.g., elite university districts - Putin actually often loses, which would be unthinkable anywhere else in Russia.

    Putin actually often loses, which would be unthinkable anywhere else in Russia.

    There was a strong possibility that Putin lost in 2012 in the Israeli voting. Although this was only based on an internet survey, which isn’t necessarily representative sample of the demographics that actually voted (only around half of the readership who took part were eligible to vote).

    http://www.newsru.co.il/israel/22feb2012/vybory_pr_106.html

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    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    No, he didn't, but it was close, and he lost in much of the West (blue = Putin, green = Prokhorov):

    http://akarlin.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/russia-2012-elections-abroad.png

    In San Francisco, it was 57% Prokhorov vs. 27% for Putin, which is even better than for the US as a whole (lots of Silicon Valley types there).
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  • @neutral
    Is there really a difference between the IQ of the people that live in the leftist Czech cities and those that live a bit further away from the cities? I doubt that is is true because they not that racially different from the rest of the population and it has to do with the fact that cities tend to pay more. People are also much easier to brainwash in the cities because the people end up have more contacts to radicals that tell them how to think than people that live away from the cities.

    I think so, yes – at least if these Czech electoral patterns are comparable to Russian ones. (In Moscow districts, correlations between education level vs. voting for Putin – if you’re poorly educated; for the liberal candidate – if you’re well educated, are better than for wealth vs. voting for Putin/liberal). And in the very smartest regions – e.g., elite university districts – Putin actually often loses, which would be unthinkable anywhere else in Russia.

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    • Replies: @Dmitry

    Putin actually often loses, which would be unthinkable anywhere else in Russia.
     
    There was a strong possibility that Putin lost in 2012 in the Israeli voting. Although this was only based on an internet survey, which isn't necessarily representative sample of the demographics that actually voted (only around half of the readership who took part were eligible to vote).

    http://www.newsru.co.il/israel/22feb2012/vybory_pr_106.html

    , @Beckow
    One of the best predictors in voting for Zeman vs. Drahos was knowledge of foreign languages. Among the Czech-language-only speakers, Zeman won extremely big. The industrial northern Moravia, industrial north-west (former Sudeten), and the hilly provincial central farming region between Bohemia and Moravia, were Zeman's strongholds. You better speak Czech if you plan to visit there.

    I don't think the reason is IQ. Some of the smartest people I know are well-adjusted provincials with no desire to see the world. We have a split between people who live off globalism in one form or another (Prague is a classical example), and the people who don't. Globalism is a very broad economic concept and most universities, culture circles and capital cities' dwellers are automatically pulled into it. They support globo-liberal policies because it benefits them. In many ways they are very stupid people, impractical, useless, and unable to provide for the future. But they are dependent on globalism for their jobs, lifestyle and meaning in life. Many literally don't know how to do anything but speak some foreign language and are verbally gifted. They will defend open borders, 'Atlantic' solidarity and weird social mores until the end. They have no place to go - unless they themselves emigrate. I suspect it is similar in Moscow.

    If you think Drahos is 'smart', just try to talk to him. You immediately hit a mental wall of hardened liberal-globalist stupidity that doesn't suggest a high applied IQ (maybe the aptitude was there at the beginning, but it led to nothing). Watch the Jordan Peterson Channel 4 discussion (Jan 16) to see how the oh-so-smart-high-IQ interviewer completely fails even the most basic practical intelligence test. This is the way they are, they don't think much about anything, so what is the 'high IQ' all about?

    In the 16th century Nostradamus predicted that mankind will eventually divide between international rich allied with each other with no nation to call their own - and everyone else. And they will fight each other. I don't really take Nostradamus seriously, but the observation is valid, it fits what has been happening.
    , @22pp22
    I believe in IQ as a metric, but with reservations

    I spent most of my life working in elite universities. If society had collapsed, my colleagues would have starved.

    I now live in a small town in New Zealand in the middle of nowhere. I would trust the locals in Central Otago to rebuild civilization within two generations.
    , @Seamus Padraig
    Education is one thing, IQ is another. The former is environmental, the latter is innate.
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  • Is there really a difference between the IQ of the people that live in the leftist Czech cities and those that live a bit further away from the cities? I doubt that is is true because they not that racially different from the rest of the population and it has to do with the fact that cities tend to pay more. People are also much easier to brainwash in the cities because the people end up have more contacts to radicals that tell them how to think than people that live away from the cities.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    I think so, yes - at least if these Czech electoral patterns are comparable to Russian ones. (In Moscow districts, correlations between education level vs. voting for Putin - if you're poorly educated; for the liberal candidate - if you're well educated, are better than for wealth vs. voting for Putin/liberal). And in the very smartest regions - e.g., elite university districts - Putin actually often loses, which would be unthinkable anywhere else in Russia.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Zeman won because he went for the jugular. He effectively used the migration issue and Drahos’s ‘open letter’ from 2015 supporting the Merkel-jugend migrants.

    This in spite of what was about 80-90% media and cultural demonisation of Zeman, with the usual artists staging pro-Drahos concerts, etc…

    The reality is that liberal globalists cannot win in an open elections. So they manipulate and cheat, but it is a downward spiral. Next Italy in March… if the lib-socialists win, I will eat my weight in tortellini…if they lose, I think the Brussels game is over.

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    • Replies: @Jaakko Raipala
    They don't need to win elections if they have media, academia and culture domination to the point where the right-wing just decides that it's easier to surrender to the left's social agenda and focus right-wing efforts entirely on a zealous advocacy of tax cuts and the like.

    Finnish presidential election tonight. The Greens have an openly homosexual open borders, pro-color-revolutions, anti-Bush-wars but pro-Obama-wars activist who will get maybe 10 %. The nationalists have a young female who looks good on TV but becomes embarrassing as soon as she opens her mouth (she is a creationist, ugh).

    The cuckservative mainstream right-wing sitting President will win and he will never oppose the globalist agenda that actually didn't win the election. Eastern Europeans will be in the same situation in a decade or two if they just focus on beating liberal globalists in elections instead of developing a culture to match them in media and academia.
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  • Zeman vs Femen

    Zeman won in the end, there can be zero doubts that the funding for these kind of stunts come from Soros. The strange thing with that incident is that the Femen woman was not even white.

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    • Replies: @ERM
    I think that Femen attack may have been crucial in putting Zeman over the top. Rather than highlighting how physically decrepit he really is, it succeeded in garnering sympathy for a frail old man unfairly attacked by a gibbering foreign lunatic. I think it almost certainly boosted his standing among Czech women, who used to be prone to maternally clucking over poor dear Havel when he was running into things or wearing his trousers backward and so on.
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  • Its Russia’s fault, as you know.

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  • Since the 1990s, Czech Republic often seems to have the most sensible politics in Europe.

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  • @DFH

    anti-European
     
    Really makes you think from a woman who would happily see Europe's native population replaced by Somalis
    (I know what she actually meant)

    Is she even ethnically European?

    She sure does love interfering in elections.

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  • anti-European

    Really makes you think from a woman who would happily see Europe’s native population replaced by Somalis
    (I know what she actually meant)

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    • Replies: @LondonBob
    Is she even ethnically European?

    She sure does love interfering in elections.
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  • @truthman
    Any insight about Zeman's areas of strength. He did really well in Northern Moravia.

    Interactive maps here.

    https://volby.idnes.cz

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  • Any insight about Zeman’s areas of strength. He did really well in Northern Moravia.

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    • Replies: @ERM
    Interactive maps here.

    https://volby.idnes.cz
    , @LH
    People who are not happy with current politics: those who fear immigration (this was the major point), those who do not want euro (they fear getting Greeced), people who are fed up by mainstream pro-EU propaganda. Those who do not like political NGOs.

    People from economically depressed regions (outside Prague and few large cities). Especially northern parts of Bohemia and Moravia.

    People who are pro-guns (this was discussed in one TV debate).

    Parents who do not like the recent law about inclusion of feral gypsies into elementary schools.

    People who saw that Drahoš is merely empty suit with no political programme, no ideas, unable to speak in public.

    Probably more interesting is why someone would vote for the empty suit Drahoš. He represents utopia many still dream about, the EU utopia. Especially young people at universities hope for big European career. Prague is full of people who make killing by plundering EU funds, full of bureaucrats employed in countless "European departments", full of NGOs financed by the EU. All these people fear Zeman, that he may destroy their current or future livelihood.

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  • Is he so physically decrepit that he has to walk with a cane? That would make his victory somewhat more impressive imo.
    But yes, the general dumbness of nationalists is a problem.

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    • Replies: @LH
    Zeman has diabetic neuropathy, problems with walking. His intellect is untouched, in TV debates he crushed his opponent without effort. It was like watching cobra playing with a little bunny.
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  • It may have been fairly tight but he got more votes in absolute terms than he did five years ago, prior to all the scandals and against a much more charismatic opponent. He’a in a strong position and was not lacking confidence in his acceptance speech.

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  • The next Czech President will probably be the guy who signed a "scientists against fear and hatred" in response to Zeman's "Islamophobia" and expressed concern about Russian elections hacking. Not only did the tipsy, politically incorrect Zeman underperform his poll numbers by around 4% points in the first round of the elections, but current polls...
  • ZE MAN WON AGAIN!

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  • WE FUCKING DID IT.
    THE BOYS DID IT.

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    • LOL: reiner Tor
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  • @Sean
    Zeman never ever toyed with the idea of leaving the EU. I doubt whether immigration would be enough to get elect a leave populist. There are not going to be any more referendums on EU membership, that is for sure,ritain will have to do well, and others like Sweden will have to follow them out before Chechia would consider it. The Czech Republic is wonderfully well situated to benefit from the EU customs union though so there will have to be an insane number of immigrants.

    Just yesterday Czech parliament unanimously agreed on proclamation toward the government to refuse Dublin IV, especially the part about forced relocations.

    If Dublin IV gets implemented it may trigger leaving the EU. The aversion toward the migrants is so massive that even the traditional fearmongering (how we are all going to die without the EU) will fail to stop it.

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  • @Anon

    The result of pushing out people like Zeman and Babis will be a more ‘paranoid’ and militaristic Czechia
     
    Militaristic Czechia? if Babiš and Zeman are all that is stopping us from paranoia and militarism, I think paranoia and militarism are not so bad. By the way, the Czech secret service regularly publishes bogus sounding reports about "Russian influence", and this happens under Zeman.

    I knew another allegedly pro-Russian leader in a certain country to the East of Czechia, who was chased out by anti-Russian Nazis that were cultivated under his rule. I am always reminded of that gentleman when I am told that Zeman and Babiš are bulwarks against some nefarious forces.

    Well, it is a matter of degree. To some extent people like Zeman and Babis balance the one-sided paranoia that would otherwise go unchallenged (in public) in Czechia. Most of the silly stuff comes from Parliament poseurs, government ministries (socialist run until very recently) and media. Zeman has had no control over any of them.

    Your point about the uselessness of ‘bulwarks’ is valid. But if relatively rational people like Zeman or Babis are driven out of public life, the paranoid style of politics will rule. With an occasional assistance from silly new groups like the Pirates whose main role is to splinter any opposition and give dissatisfied voters some place to go – it is actually not a place, just an unserious show.

    I am not anti-business or pro-business. But we have developed rules in our civilisation for a reason. One car argue that in a completely unregulated society where jobs, incomes, taxes and smoking policies are left to each person, all people would find ‘employment’. You can always have people sell their bodies or some ‘service’. And business would be everywhere. We have had it in the past and it didn’t work. Or you can visit the unregulated shit-holes in the Third World for a taste of how that works. Minimum wage exists for a reason – if you don’t understand why, travel a bit around the world.

    Smoking is harmful. You have no right – in a public place – to inflict harm on others. Can I start blowing some smelly poisonous air bubbles at an outdoor pub and call it ‘bubbling’? And insist that it is my right to do it and that since I am ‘good for business’ I must be allowed to do it?

    Libertarian ideas are dying for a reason – once examined they amount to an archaic idiocy.

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  • @dfordoom

    I believe that killing the term “class warfare” has been the most important victory for the winners of this game. Smart guys.
     
    Agreed.

    We're in the middle of a vicious class war but nobody notices.

    One of the major weaknesses of the alt-right is its inability to comprehend class warfare.

    It comes down to the base rate fallacy. In Western countries, most people are (still) white, and even though white people are less likely to be poor, most poor people are still mostly white. (Actually, in the US, they might no longer make a majority. I don’t know. But surely they are still the largest ethnic group among the poor.) So if you can manage to demonize white people, you effectively demonize poor people, while getting to pretend to be progressive. Presumably some cynics understand this well, though I suspect your random SJW grunt hasn’t really thought it through, despite having had to take a statistics course to get a social science degree. Academia is not sending its best.

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    • Agree: Talha, dfordoom
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  • @Anon

    The result of pushing out people like Zeman and Babis will be a more ‘paranoid’ and militaristic Czechia
     
    Militaristic Czechia? if Babiš and Zeman are all that is stopping us from paranoia and militarism, I think paranoia and militarism are not so bad. By the way, the Czech secret service regularly publishes bogus sounding reports about "Russian influence", and this happens under Zeman.

    I knew another allegedly pro-Russian leader in a certain country to the East of Czechia, who was chased out by anti-Russian Nazis that were cultivated under his rule. I am always reminded of that gentleman when I am told that Zeman and Babiš are bulwarks against some nefarious forces.

    while they are bogus, they don’t publish them regularly – they have a spacial task force on the ministry of IA or D (not sure) for monitoring disinformation campaigns since 2015-6, something that has been mocked as the ministry of truth and it was started by the former CSSD (soc. dem) minister and the senate foreign relations committee which is crawling with people who take selfies with McCain and similar good samaritans – they have been sworn enemies of Zeman and Babis(ironically his coalition partners) throughout the last 5 years. Without them, Czechia would definitely be more paranoid and militaristic.

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  • Anon • Disclaimer says:
    @reiner Tor

    I heard the tax revenue collected, wherever this EET system has been implemented, is falling because businesses would rather close than comply.
     
    Any sources for that? In Hungary following the implementation of a similar system revenue increased. It also allows the government to follow an anti-multinational policy against large shopping centers, where previously the shopping centers were the only reliable sources of revenue with all small stores cheating. Now smaller stores pay their share of VAT and so the government is less dependent on the big multinational corporations like Tesco.

    If 90% of your patrons are smokers, most non-smokers will be kept out anyway. But if you ban smoking, these 90% of guys will leave you, and the non-smokers will not replace them.
     
    Let me guess: you are a smoker.

    Experience was different. Restaurants became better since smoking was banned (you cannot taste food well with the air being full of smoke), and smokers just adapted by going outside for a smoke. Since smoking was banned everywhere, clubs and pubs got better for non smokers, but guess what, smokers continued to frequent them, only went outside whenever they needed to smoke. Overall consumption didn’t decline, but the composition of patrons changed a bit, for example families went to restaurants more often, etc. Younger generations smoke less anyway.

    The claim that tax revenues are falling comes from opposition parties. And I have no reason to disbelieve them.

    Now smaller stores pay their share of VAT and so the government is less dependent on the big multinational corporations like Tesco.

    Obviously paying VAT is less of a problem for big chains like Tesco. The small shops will simply close.

    Let me guess: you are a smoker.

    You guessed wrong. But even UK after smoking ban, many pubs closed, that’s a fact.

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  • @dfordoom

    I believe that killing the term “class warfare” has been the most important victory for the winners of this game. Smart guys.
     
    Agreed.

    We're in the middle of a vicious class war but nobody notices.

    One of the major weaknesses of the alt-right is its inability to comprehend class warfare.

    We’re in the middle of a vicious class war but nobody notices.

    One of the major weaknesses of the alt-right is its inability to comprehend class warfare.

    Couldn’t agree more.

    Tragicomic. All of it.

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  • @peterAUS

    Nobody owes workers a job…
     
    That's the current viewpoint. Can't be argued in the current paradigm.

    A simple question remains: what's first....people or jobs?

    And, as always, we get to that class divide nobody wants to talk about today. Interesting, because before the fall of The Wall (as some of us oldies remember) that was the main point of everything.
    Suddenly....there wasn't any class thing, let alone class warfare.

    Speaking of warfare it's also interesting to see that nobody owes worker a job....BUT....as soon as shooting and dying is needed then, suddenly, that very worker is told that he owes ....something...to the state so he must fight and die for it.

    So.....for simpletons it looks like: we don't owe you decent life (which is based on a decent job), but, you do owe us your life when we need it.

    Sounds..............imperious?

    I believe that killing the term "class warfare" has been the most important victory for the winners of this game. Smart guys.

    I believe that killing the term “class warfare” has been the most important victory for the winners of this game. Smart guys.

    Agreed.

    We’re in the middle of a vicious class war but nobody notices.

    One of the major weaknesses of the alt-right is its inability to comprehend class warfare.

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    • Replies: @peterAUS

    We’re in the middle of a vicious class war but nobody notices.

    One of the major weaknesses of the alt-right is its inability to comprehend class warfare.
     
    Couldn't agree more.

    Tragicomic. All of it.
    , @The Big Red Scary
    It comes down to the base rate fallacy. In Western countries, most people are (still) white, and even though white people are less likely to be poor, most poor people are still mostly white. (Actually, in the US, they might no longer make a majority. I don’t know. But surely they are still the largest ethnic group among the poor.) So if you can manage to demonize white people, you effectively demonize poor people, while getting to pretend to be progressive. Presumably some cynics understand this well, though I suspect your random SJW grunt hasn’t really thought it through, despite having had to take a statistics course to get a social science degree. Academia is not sending its best.
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  • @German_reader
    I could give you lots of counter-examples with Christian activists fervently promoting mass immigration and even Islamization (and if you're telling me those aren't "real" Christians, how is that for you to decide?)...seriously, the pope is doing just that, it's bizarre to pretend this isn't a very strong, even dominant strain in Christianity today. Apart from Poland and Hungary, you're only mentioning a few subcultures, some of whom have distinctly unattractive characteristics of their own (e.g. I'm unconvinced that the majority of the evangelicals voting for Trump do so for promoting a sane national conservatism, a lot of them are probably super-bellicose "let's show the world who's boss" Israel-worshipping types).
    Granted, long term atheism probably isn't that great either, its logical consequence probably is some sort of nihilism. Christianity or not, the future looks bleak.

    I’m unconvinced that the majority of the evangelicals voting for Trump do so for promoting a sane national conservatism, a lot of them are probably super-bellicose “let’s show the world who’s boss” Israel-worshipping types

    Agreed. The evangelicals are a menace.

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  • @German_reader
    I could give you lots of counter-examples with Christian activists fervently promoting mass immigration and even Islamization (and if you're telling me those aren't "real" Christians, how is that for you to decide?)...seriously, the pope is doing just that, it's bizarre to pretend this isn't a very strong, even dominant strain in Christianity today. Apart from Poland and Hungary, you're only mentioning a few subcultures, some of whom have distinctly unattractive characteristics of their own (e.g. I'm unconvinced that the majority of the evangelicals voting for Trump do so for promoting a sane national conservatism, a lot of them are probably super-bellicose "let's show the world who's boss" Israel-worshipping types).
    Granted, long term atheism probably isn't that great either, its logical consequence probably is some sort of nihilism. Christianity or not, the future looks bleak.

    I could give you lots of counter-examples with Christian activists fervently promoting mass immigration and even Islamization (and if you’re telling me those aren’t “real” Christians, how is that for you to decide?)…seriously, the pope is doing just that, it’s bizarre to pretend this isn’t a very strong, even dominant strain in Christianity today.

    It’s the overwhelmingly dominant strain in Christianity today. Modern Christianity is a feelgood religion for women and male homosexuals.

    It’s not just immigration. Christianity in the West has surrendered to feminism and the LGBT lobby. Christianity in eastern Europe will follow suit. Surrendering is what Christians do. And if you surrender on the culture war front you’ll inevitably surrender on the demographic war front.

    Christianity is one of the chief enemies of civilisation.

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  • @Brabantian
    It's almost an alt-right proverb now that 'democracy' doesn't work because

    Majority of women - sub-consciously eager for more males to compete for their charms, thus 'refugees welcome' -

    Plus cucked males, equals democratic majority in voting, and that combination will always outvote the intrinsically-minority group of 'based' males

    The 'original flaw' of modern democracy, is thus, some say, 'women getting the right to vote'

    In 1934 British scholar J D Unwin published a book on 'Sex & Culture', now oft-cited by the Alt-Right 'manosphere' ... Unwin, fascinated by Lenin's disastrous experiment with easy divorce in Russia, began to historically investigate matters over the centuries ... he concluded that, without fail, 'women's rights' led to the eventual implosion & collapse of societies, as shown in repeated patterns including ancient Babylon & Rome

    Unwin said that gynarchic privileges eventually wreck the family arrangements that undergird civilisation, as it is only when males have stability with monogamous spouses, that civilisation can flower ... if women have lots of 'rights' they sabotage marriages so they can go back to hunting one of the 20% of males who are 'alpha' in style, leaving most males to just be sources of state-extracted income

    Unwin said that gynarchic privileges eventually wreck the family arrangements that undergird civilisation, as it is only when males have stability with monogamous spouses, that civilisation can flower … if women have lots of ‘rights’ they sabotage marriages so they can go back to hunting one of the 20% of males who are ‘alpha’ in style, leaving most males to just be sources of state-extracted income

    I’d say that Unwin was right on the money.

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  • @Anon

    as soon as shooting and dying is needed then, suddenly, that very worker is told that he owes ….something…to the state
     
    That is an outdated view though, today the state relies on professionals not conscription.

    today the state relies on professionals not conscription

    Aha.

    http://chartsbin.com/view/1887

    And, a neat trick with shipping jobs overseas and the only options left are:
    -underclass feeding the rat race to the bottom
    -enlistment

    And even neater trick of using those losers to further enhance wealth and power of the very people who, practically, put them there in the first place.
    Smart.

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    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @John Gruskos
    So much for the alleged "based atheists" of Czechia.

    The only solid opposition to globalism and cultural Marxism comes from Western nations with robust Christian religiosity - proverbially Catholic Poland, Hungary where the constitution of 2010 declares Hungary to be a Christian nation, the American Bible Belt, traditionalist Catholic enclaves in southern France, Ulster, Orania, etc.

    Hungary is not very religious, it’s mostly Orbán pushing it to lock in the small but disciplined churchgoing population. While the rest is indifferent, so there’s little downside for him. Even leftist governments pandered to the churches, Orbán needs to be quite over the top to be sure about their enthusiasm.

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  • @Anon

    Babis implemented basic policy to reduce not declaring income.
     
    And the result is once thriving businesses tanking. I heard the tax revenue collected, wherever this EET system has been implemented, is falling because businesses would rather close than comply.

    My solution would be
     
    Bottom line is they didn't... they did not care about the impact this nonsense would have because why would they?

    non-smokers have a right to go out too
     
    If 90% of your patrons are smokers, most non-smokers will be kept out anyway. But if you ban smoking, these 90% of guys will leave you, and the non-smokers will not replace them.

    I am all for non-smoking places. If the barmen were smart, they would ban it themselves because it is slowly killing them, and some pubs have done so long before regulation came from above. I prefer free choice to regulation, it makes like better for everybody.

    Nobody owes a businessman a ‘business’.
     
    You have a very anti-business attitude. The minimum wage increase is ruinous to everyone involved. Businesses will simply get rid of the workers instead of paying them the newly hiked minimum wage. Somebody said that the ultimate minimum wage is 0. Nobody owes workers a job...

    Shops in less populated areas will close because they become unprofitable, shops elsewhere will increase prices to pay for the newly mandate increase in minimum wage.

    I heard the tax revenue collected, wherever this EET system has been implemented, is falling because businesses would rather close than comply.

    Any sources for that? In Hungary following the implementation of a similar system revenue increased. It also allows the government to follow an anti-multinational policy against large shopping centers, where previously the shopping centers were the only reliable sources of revenue with all small stores cheating. Now smaller stores pay their share of VAT and so the government is less dependent on the big multinational corporations like Tesco.

    If 90% of your patrons are smokers, most non-smokers will be kept out anyway. But if you ban smoking, these 90% of guys will leave you, and the non-smokers will not replace them.

    Let me guess: you are a smoker.

    Experience was different. Restaurants became better since smoking was banned (you cannot taste food well with the air being full of smoke), and smokers just adapted by going outside for a smoke. Since smoking was banned everywhere, clubs and pubs got better for non smokers, but guess what, smokers continued to frequent them, only went outside whenever they needed to smoke. Overall consumption didn’t decline, but the composition of patrons changed a bit, for example families went to restaurants more often, etc. Younger generations smoke less anyway.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anon
    The claim that tax revenues are falling comes from opposition parties. And I have no reason to disbelieve them.

    Now smaller stores pay their share of VAT and so the government is less dependent on the big multinational corporations like Tesco.
     
    Obviously paying VAT is less of a problem for big chains like Tesco. The small shops will simply close.

    Let me guess: you are a smoker.
     
    You guessed wrong. But even UK after smoking ban, many pubs closed, that's a fact.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @peterAUS

    Nobody owes workers a job…
     
    That's the current viewpoint. Can't be argued in the current paradigm.

    A simple question remains: what's first....people or jobs?

    And, as always, we get to that class divide nobody wants to talk about today. Interesting, because before the fall of The Wall (as some of us oldies remember) that was the main point of everything.
    Suddenly....there wasn't any class thing, let alone class warfare.

    Speaking of warfare it's also interesting to see that nobody owes worker a job....BUT....as soon as shooting and dying is needed then, suddenly, that very worker is told that he owes ....something...to the state so he must fight and die for it.

    So.....for simpletons it looks like: we don't owe you decent life (which is based on a decent job), but, you do owe us your life when we need it.

    Sounds..............imperious?

    I believe that killing the term "class warfare" has been the most important victory for the winners of this game. Smart guys.

    as soon as shooting and dying is needed then, suddenly, that very worker is told that he owes ….something…to the state

    That is an outdated view though, today the state relies on professionals not conscription.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    today the state relies on professionals not conscription
     
    Aha.
    http://chartsbin.com/view/1887

    And, a neat trick with shipping jobs overseas and the only options left are:
    -underclass feeding the rat race to the bottom
    -enlistment

    And even neater trick of using those losers to further enhance wealth and power of the very people who, practically, put them there in the first place.
    Smart.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Mitleser

    But Babiš is suspected of defrauding the EU funds.
     
    Why does that bother you?

    Why does that bother you?

    Why shouldn’t it bother me?

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  • @Anon

    Babis implemented basic policy to reduce not declaring income.
     
    And the result is once thriving businesses tanking. I heard the tax revenue collected, wherever this EET system has been implemented, is falling because businesses would rather close than comply.

    My solution would be
     
    Bottom line is they didn't... they did not care about the impact this nonsense would have because why would they?

    non-smokers have a right to go out too
     
    If 90% of your patrons are smokers, most non-smokers will be kept out anyway. But if you ban smoking, these 90% of guys will leave you, and the non-smokers will not replace them.

    I am all for non-smoking places. If the barmen were smart, they would ban it themselves because it is slowly killing them, and some pubs have done so long before regulation came from above. I prefer free choice to regulation, it makes like better for everybody.

    Nobody owes a businessman a ‘business’.
     
    You have a very anti-business attitude. The minimum wage increase is ruinous to everyone involved. Businesses will simply get rid of the workers instead of paying them the newly hiked minimum wage. Somebody said that the ultimate minimum wage is 0. Nobody owes workers a job...

    Shops in less populated areas will close because they become unprofitable, shops elsewhere will increase prices to pay for the newly mandate increase in minimum wage.

    Nobody owes workers a job…

    That’s the current viewpoint. Can’t be argued in the current paradigm.

    A simple question remains: what’s first….people or jobs?

    And, as always, we get to that class divide nobody wants to talk about today. Interesting, because before the fall of The Wall (as some of us oldies remember) that was the main point of everything.
    Suddenly….there wasn’t any class thing, let alone class warfare.

    Speaking of warfare it’s also interesting to see that nobody owes worker a job….BUT….as soon as shooting and dying is needed then, suddenly, that very worker is told that he owes ….something…to the state so he must fight and die for it.

    So…..for simpletons it looks like: we don’t owe you decent life (which is based on a decent job), but, you do owe us your life when we need it.

    Sounds…………..imperious?

    I believe that killing the term “class warfare” has been the most important victory for the winners of this game. Smart guys.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anon

    as soon as shooting and dying is needed then, suddenly, that very worker is told that he owes ….something…to the state
     
    That is an outdated view though, today the state relies on professionals not conscription.
    , @dfordoom

    I believe that killing the term “class warfare” has been the most important victory for the winners of this game. Smart guys.
     
    Agreed.

    We're in the middle of a vicious class war but nobody notices.

    One of the major weaknesses of the alt-right is its inability to comprehend class warfare.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Anon • Disclaimer says:
    @Beckow

    quality of beer got poorer, the smoking ban, and minimum wage increases will further decimate them.
     
    I have sympathy for the tough business conditions, but, 'must provide a receipt' rule is in effect everywhere in EU. Babis implemented basic policy to reduce not declaring income. My solution would be to exempt places like neighbourhood pubs from VAT, or reduce it. A 'subsidy' vith non enforcement of tax laws is irrational.

    You are wrong about smoking, non-smokers have a right to go out too. And it is not applied in outdoor restaurants forcing me and my (non-smoking) family to choose between staying indoors or getting poisoned by out of control smoking.

    You are also wrong about minimum wage. Nobody owes a businessman a 'business'. If he cannot make it by following normal rules, he should not be doing the 'business'. Paying people close to nothing is very destructive to society. If pubs are desirable (I think they are), let's subsidise them directly, like 'culture', and not by cutting corners.

    The 'fraud of EU' is a total bullsh..t. The result of pushing out people like Zeman and Babis will be a more 'paranoid' and militaristic Czechia, I think having to pay a few more cents for beer is preferable.

    The result of pushing out people like Zeman and Babis will be a more ‘paranoid’ and militaristic Czechia

    Militaristic Czechia? if Babiš and Zeman are all that is stopping us from paranoia and militarism, I think paranoia and militarism are not so bad. By the way, the Czech secret service regularly publishes bogus sounding reports about “Russian influence”, and this happens under Zeman.

    I knew another allegedly pro-Russian leader in a certain country to the East of Czechia, who was chased out by anti-Russian Nazis that were cultivated under his rule. I am always reminded of that gentleman when I am told that Zeman and Babiš are bulwarks against some nefarious forces.

    Read More
    • Replies: @bb.
    while they are bogus, they don't publish them regularly - they have a spacial task force on the ministry of IA or D (not sure) for monitoring disinformation campaigns since 2015-6, something that has been mocked as the ministry of truth and it was started by the former CSSD (soc. dem) minister and the senate foreign relations committee which is crawling with people who take selfies with McCain and similar good samaritans - they have been sworn enemies of Zeman and Babis(ironically his coalition partners) throughout the last 5 years. Without them, Czechia would definitely be more paranoid and militaristic.
    , @Beckow
    Well, it is a matter of degree. To some extent people like Zeman and Babis balance the one-sided paranoia that would otherwise go unchallenged (in public) in Czechia. Most of the silly stuff comes from Parliament poseurs, government ministries (socialist run until very recently) and media. Zeman has had no control over any of them.

    Your point about the uselessness of 'bulwarks' is valid. But if relatively rational people like Zeman or Babis are driven out of public life, the paranoid style of politics will rule. With an occasional assistance from silly new groups like the Pirates whose main role is to splinter any opposition and give dissatisfied voters some place to go - it is actually not a place, just an unserious show.

    I am not anti-business or pro-business. But we have developed rules in our civilisation for a reason. One car argue that in a completely unregulated society where jobs, incomes, taxes and smoking policies are left to each person, all people would find 'employment'. You can always have people sell their bodies or some 'service'. And business would be everywhere. We have had it in the past and it didn't work. Or you can visit the unregulated shit-holes in the Third World for a taste of how that works. Minimum wage exists for a reason - if you don't understand why, travel a bit around the world.

    Smoking is harmful. You have no right - in a public place - to inflict harm on others. Can I start blowing some smelly poisonous air bubbles at an outdoor pub and call it 'bubbling'? And insist that it is my right to do it and that since I am 'good for business' I must be allowed to do it?

    Libertarian ideas are dying for a reason - once examined they amount to an archaic idiocy.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Anon • Disclaimer says:
    @Beckow

    quality of beer got poorer, the smoking ban, and minimum wage increases will further decimate them.
     
    I have sympathy for the tough business conditions, but, 'must provide a receipt' rule is in effect everywhere in EU. Babis implemented basic policy to reduce not declaring income. My solution would be to exempt places like neighbourhood pubs from VAT, or reduce it. A 'subsidy' vith non enforcement of tax laws is irrational.

    You are wrong about smoking, non-smokers have a right to go out too. And it is not applied in outdoor restaurants forcing me and my (non-smoking) family to choose between staying indoors or getting poisoned by out of control smoking.

    You are also wrong about minimum wage. Nobody owes a businessman a 'business'. If he cannot make it by following normal rules, he should not be doing the 'business'. Paying people close to nothing is very destructive to society. If pubs are desirable (I think they are), let's subsidise them directly, like 'culture', and not by cutting corners.

    The 'fraud of EU' is a total bullsh..t. The result of pushing out people like Zeman and Babis will be a more 'paranoid' and militaristic Czechia, I think having to pay a few more cents for beer is preferable.

    Babis implemented basic policy to reduce not declaring income.

    And the result is once thriving businesses tanking. I heard the tax revenue collected, wherever this EET system has been implemented, is falling because businesses would rather close than comply.

    My solution would be

    Bottom line is they didn’t… they did not care about the impact this nonsense would have because why would they?

    non-smokers have a right to go out too

    If 90% of your patrons are smokers, most non-smokers will be kept out anyway. But if you ban smoking, these 90% of guys will leave you, and the non-smokers will not replace them.

    I am all for non-smoking places. If the barmen were smart, they would ban it themselves because it is slowly killing them, and some pubs have done so long before regulation came from above. I prefer free choice to regulation, it makes like better for everybody.

    Nobody owes a businessman a ‘business’.

    You have a very anti-business attitude. The minimum wage increase is ruinous to everyone involved. Businesses will simply get rid of the workers instead of paying them the newly hiked minimum wage. Somebody said that the ultimate minimum wage is 0. Nobody owes workers a job…

    Shops in less populated areas will close because they become unprofitable, shops elsewhere will increase prices to pay for the newly mandate increase in minimum wage.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    Nobody owes workers a job…
     
    That's the current viewpoint. Can't be argued in the current paradigm.

    A simple question remains: what's first....people or jobs?

    And, as always, we get to that class divide nobody wants to talk about today. Interesting, because before the fall of The Wall (as some of us oldies remember) that was the main point of everything.
    Suddenly....there wasn't any class thing, let alone class warfare.

    Speaking of warfare it's also interesting to see that nobody owes worker a job....BUT....as soon as shooting and dying is needed then, suddenly, that very worker is told that he owes ....something...to the state so he must fight and die for it.

    So.....for simpletons it looks like: we don't owe you decent life (which is based on a decent job), but, you do owe us your life when we need it.

    Sounds..............imperious?

    I believe that killing the term "class warfare" has been the most important victory for the winners of this game. Smart guys.
    , @reiner Tor

    I heard the tax revenue collected, wherever this EET system has been implemented, is falling because businesses would rather close than comply.
     
    Any sources for that? In Hungary following the implementation of a similar system revenue increased. It also allows the government to follow an anti-multinational policy against large shopping centers, where previously the shopping centers were the only reliable sources of revenue with all small stores cheating. Now smaller stores pay their share of VAT and so the government is less dependent on the big multinational corporations like Tesco.

    If 90% of your patrons are smokers, most non-smokers will be kept out anyway. But if you ban smoking, these 90% of guys will leave you, and the non-smokers will not replace them.
     
    Let me guess: you are a smoker.

    Experience was different. Restaurants became better since smoking was banned (you cannot taste food well with the air being full of smoke), and smokers just adapted by going outside for a smoke. Since smoking was banned everywhere, clubs and pubs got better for non smokers, but guess what, smokers continued to frequent them, only went outside whenever they needed to smoke. Overall consumption didn’t decline, but the composition of patrons changed a bit, for example families went to restaurants more often, etc. Younger generations smoke less anyway.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @22pp22
    Macron is not a Newbie. He could not be more of an insider than he is. He's been groomed ever since he was at the Ecole Nationale d'Administration

    Newbie is a bad term for Macron (I agree). What Macron did is after being groomed and promoted he jumped over all other long-serving loyal politicians. Is there a term for that?

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  • @John Gruskos
    So much for the alleged "based atheists" of Czechia.

    The only solid opposition to globalism and cultural Marxism comes from Western nations with robust Christian religiosity - proverbially Catholic Poland, Hungary where the constitution of 2010 declares Hungary to be a Christian nation, the American Bible Belt, traditionalist Catholic enclaves in southern France, Ulster, Orania, etc.

    I could give you lots of counter-examples with Christian activists fervently promoting mass immigration and even Islamization (and if you’re telling me those aren’t “real” Christians, how is that for you to decide?)…seriously, the pope is doing just that, it’s bizarre to pretend this isn’t a very strong, even dominant strain in Christianity today. Apart from Poland and Hungary, you’re only mentioning a few subcultures, some of whom have distinctly unattractive characteristics of their own (e.g. I’m unconvinced that the majority of the evangelicals voting for Trump do so for promoting a sane national conservatism, a lot of them are probably super-bellicose “let’s show the world who’s boss” Israel-worshipping types).
    Granted, long term atheism probably isn’t that great either, its logical consequence probably is some sort of nihilism. Christianity or not, the future looks bleak.

    Read More
    • Replies: @dfordoom

    I could give you lots of counter-examples with Christian activists fervently promoting mass immigration and even Islamization (and if you’re telling me those aren’t “real” Christians, how is that for you to decide?)…seriously, the pope is doing just that, it’s bizarre to pretend this isn’t a very strong, even dominant strain in Christianity today.
     
    It's the overwhelmingly dominant strain in Christianity today. Modern Christianity is a feelgood religion for women and male homosexuals.

    It's not just immigration. Christianity in the West has surrendered to feminism and the LGBT lobby. Christianity in eastern Europe will follow suit. Surrendering is what Christians do. And if you surrender on the culture war front you'll inevitably surrender on the demographic war front.

    Christianity is one of the chief enemies of civilisation.
    , @dfordoom

    I’m unconvinced that the majority of the evangelicals voting for Trump do so for promoting a sane national conservatism, a lot of them are probably super-bellicose “let’s show the world who’s boss” Israel-worshipping types
     
    Agreed. The evangelicals are a menace.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Beckow
    You are right, it doesn't look promising for Zeman. But Zeman is a unique kind of a politician - he used to be a socialist prime minister. He is a contrarian but firmly a part of the system. He is also old, mostly drunk, bored, and has dropped all behavioural constraints.

    The split between annoying liberal Prague (and a few urban enclaves) and the rest of the country mirrors Trump, La Pen, etc... but there are differences. For example Trump was a newbie, as is to some extent Macron. Drahos is a new face too, that's part of his appeal.

    The system posse has figured out in the last few years that one way to block populism is by using a new fresh face, often a non-politician. Bellen (?) in Austria, Drahos, or Kiska in Slovakia (Kiska literally used to pump gas in New Jersey as a despondent one-time immigrant to US, then someone discovered him). That move usually suggests that we are heading towards the end of a cycle - it is done out of desperation, it can only work so many times, and it pisses off the career politicians. Risky and destabilising.

    Finally, as Zeman put it: Czechia is a 'mediacracy', the media runs its own political agenda, they are totally on the side of Prague liberals, even the state-controlled media. And having that control gets you 15-20% extra votes (old ladies and young hipsters), especially for a 'new face'. It is not over, migration policy won't change, but it is symbolically a loss.

    Macron is not a Newbie. He could not be more of an insider than he is. He’s been groomed ever since he was at the Ecole Nationale d’Administration

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    • Replies: @Beckow
    Newbie is a bad term for Macron (I agree). What Macron did is after being groomed and promoted he jumped over all other long-serving loyal politicians. Is there a term for that?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @German_reader

    The system posse has figured out in the last few years that one way to block populism is by using a new fresh face, often a non-politician. Bellen (?) in Austria
     
    Van der Bellen wasn't really a non-politician though, I just checked on Wikipedia, he was a member of parliament for the Austrian Greens from 1994 to 2012, and was party leader of the Greens from 1997 to 2008. It's true he ran as an independent during the presidential campaign, and mabye some people were fooled by that...but tbh they must have been pretty dumb in that case.
    But of course there's a stunning example for what you've described above with Macron, I still don't quite understand the sudden rise of that guy and his movement (even if he had some prior political experience as minister).

    So much for the alleged “based atheists” of Czechia.

    The only solid opposition to globalism and cultural Marxism comes from Western nations with robust Christian religiosity – proverbially Catholic Poland, Hungary where the constitution of 2010 declares Hungary to be a Christian nation, the American Bible Belt, traditionalist Catholic enclaves in southern France, Ulster, Orania, etc.

    Read More
    • Replies: @German_reader
    I could give you lots of counter-examples with Christian activists fervently promoting mass immigration and even Islamization (and if you're telling me those aren't "real" Christians, how is that for you to decide?)...seriously, the pope is doing just that, it's bizarre to pretend this isn't a very strong, even dominant strain in Christianity today. Apart from Poland and Hungary, you're only mentioning a few subcultures, some of whom have distinctly unattractive characteristics of their own (e.g. I'm unconvinced that the majority of the evangelicals voting for Trump do so for promoting a sane national conservatism, a lot of them are probably super-bellicose "let's show the world who's boss" Israel-worshipping types).
    Granted, long term atheism probably isn't that great either, its logical consequence probably is some sort of nihilism. Christianity or not, the future looks bleak.
    , @reiner Tor
    Hungary is not very religious, it’s mostly Orbán pushing it to lock in the small but disciplined churchgoing population. While the rest is indifferent, so there’s little downside for him. Even leftist governments pandered to the churches, Orbán needs to be quite over the top to be sure about their enthusiasm.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Anon

    Babis implemented compulsory receipts for all businesses. To crack down on tax evasion and black market. Were you running your own pub and cheating? Otherwise I don’t understand the anger
     
    Pubs in the Czech Republic are making a pittance, especially in the countryside. I live in the countryside and I would like pubs to remain in operation, and the beer to remain good. Making them pay for installation of electronic cashiers and the subscription of software is not nice. The quality of beer got poorer, the smoking ban, and minimum wage increases will further decimate them. Locals now gather in a clandestine pub, this town will soon stop having normal places to socialise thanks to Babiš.

    And Babis in jail, for what?
     
    I am not anti-Russian, I want our relations with Russia to be less paranoid than you described. But Babiš is suspected of defrauding the EU funds.

    But Babiš is suspected of defrauding the EU funds.

    Why does that bother you?

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    • Replies: @Anon

    Why does that bother you?
     
    Why shouldn't it bother me?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @reiner Tor

    There is no mainstream political support for refugees
     
    I know of Hungarian leftist voters who oppose EU refugee policy and think that not one refugee (Syrian or not) should be allowed into Europe. But they still oppose Orbán and in their blind hatred of him they often think that his policy is of no substance anyway (i.e. the refugee invasion would've subsided anyway, he helped the refugees get to Germany, no refugee would've come to Hungary anyway, he only made the situation worse, etc.), so they'll vote for the opposition anyway. Despite knowing well that the opposition will tear down the border fence and change the laws written by Orbán so that it would be much easier for refugees to enter the country.

    As long as voters don't think that stopping the third world hordes is the #1 issue in Europe and all politicians don't agree with them, it will be difficult. Maybe the Czech opposition parties want the same immigration restriction as Zeman, but maybe they are more open to folding on the question.

    as long as voters don’t think that stopping the third world hordes is the #1 issue

    That’s the key insight that the globalists are exploiting. There are a number of leftist and centrist parties (and some so called Christian ones) that downplay the importance of the migrant issue. When pressed they will say that they oppose ‘mass migration’, and will say negative things about Merkel, but they insist that it is not ‘that important’. That allows for ‘new faces’ to come in as the urgency of the migration issue is systematically downplayed in the liberal-controlled media.

    90% plus of voters in Central Eastern Europe oppose the globalist population replacement plans. But only 30-40% consider it to be the most important issue. Leftists especially are very susceptible to self-deception. When one tries to explain to them that all ‘leftist’ policies depend on a balanced labor market and thus control of borders, they go mushy and blabber about ‘all people in the world have rights, capitalism is the enemy, etc…‘ That’s the Achilles heel, the inability to even think straight.

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  • @Polish Perspective

    Russia is a touchier issue
     
    There was a time when the Czech Republic was considerably more Russia-friendly than Poland, and not that long ago, but those times seem to be evaporating.

    https://s17.postimg.org/r56ivxjn3/russia_approval.png

    It's amazing how bad Russia's approval ratings are. Even Germany(!), historically a sane voice on Russia has been completely brainwashed by American propaganda. At least we Poles have historical excuses to be anti-Russia. What does, say, Sweden have? Or Belgium? What about France? Napoleon? It's really amazing to see how Poland is slowly moving from being hardcore fringe on Russia to being in the fabled center, and not because we have gotten softer but because everyone else has gotten a lot crazier.

    It seems Slovakia still has some balance left in their view of Russia. But that is not really the case anymore for Czechia.


    There is no mainstream political support for refugees

     

    IIRC, even the communists in CR are against refugee quotas. How about the pirates?

    It’s amazing how bad Russia’s approval ratings are. Even Germany(!), historically a sane voice on Russia has been completely brainwashed by American propaganda. At least we Poles have historical excuses to be anti-Russia. What does, say, Sweden have? Or Belgium? What about France? Napoleon?

    What unites them? EU
    Is the EU opposed to Russia? Yes

    Here lies the answer.

    People overstate American influence on this issue.

    Of course, in response many Russians are also increasingly irritated by EUrope and growing more distant from them.

    Many more Germans and Poles wish to see a rapprochement between the EU and Russia than is the case with people in Russia. In fact, the number of Russians who support renewed rapprochement with the EU has declined markedly over the last year.

    https://www.koerber-stiftung.de/fileadmin/user_upload/koerber-stiftung/redaktion/fokusthema_russland-in-europa/pdf/2017/umfrage-russland-in-europa/Executive-Summary_Cold-war-in-peoples-minds_WEB.pdf

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  • @bb.
    And Babis in jail, for what?

    Believe it, or not, for taking an EU subsidy in accordance with the law! for building this:

    https://img.mediacentrum.sk/gallery/nwo/maxwidth/990/2649915.jpg

    it's a recreational area open to the public for free with a pet farm, restaurant, sporting venues, concert hall etc.

    The (moral?) crime, they claim, is that if he would apply for the subsidy as the big fish he is, he would not get it. So he did some very legal steps such as apply with a new company, affiliated to him via his children and then transferring it into his portfolio after some time. Shocking and discussing, I know!

    Now the good news for him is, that this kauza as we like to call it, is the best they got on him. Not very freighting if you ask me.

    The other serious deplorableness of his, is his possibly very real affiliation/collaboration with the Secret service some 30 years ago. This however, he can plausibly deny. Also, as with any country in the old bloc, you can literally throw a rock and hit someone who would qualify for the same charge. Vilifying former partaichiky was in a decade ago, today, nobody cares much anyways.

    Also a factor might be, that he is a Zeman-type man. He doesn't mince words much and is very unPC. He is also a Slovak. Some political talking head called him a Barbarian some time ago, that he does not respect our democratic tradition bla bla. (note - some Czechs - the Prager coffeehouse types - have a comically high opinion of themselves)

    I also never really understood their outrage about the new electronic sales tax collection. It's like they are openly saying ''we didn't pay taxes and we are proud of it'' which is admirable on one side but com'on..

    Personally, I think Babis is a freakin genius. Granted, he made most of his fortune through the Common agricultural policy, but he did not invent it, just maximized the profits from it. Everything else is the law of economies of scale and he understood it very quickly in the 90ties. He build a vertically integrated empire and now expands in all kinds of industries.

    caught reading some Russian books?
     
    I remember an interview where he proclaimed something along the lines (shouting in his typical manner) I DON'T HAVE TIME TO READ BOOKS, I HAVE A VISION!

    Capi Hnizdo is a public good, Babis should be thanked for building it. It has made the a region around it better. Thanks for the picture, I will visit…

    real affiliation/collaboration with the Secret service some 30 years ago

    Possibly. Babis went to a foreign language High School in Bratislava that was chock-full of the elite kids of people who were running Czechoslovakia at that time. Then he worked in foreign trade, with frequent foreign travel. It makes sense that someone in the ‘service’ at least talked to him. I don’t like it, but frankly all over the world – including US, UK – people in certain positions (journalists, businessmen) are asked by their ‘state service’ to answer questions, provide insights, and are famously told: ‘call us if you see anything of interest‘.

    In retrospect this very similar behaviour has been demonised beyond all reason in the old eastern countries. If Czechoslovakia had a legitimate government at that time (it did), it had exactly the same right to protect its interests and security as any other Western country. We might not like the style, but that is a matter of taste. I am sure Babis occasionally had to answer a few ‘questions’ during his 80′s foreign travels.

    By the way, Babis’s wealth (and he is very wealthy) is based on a brilliant insight and very hard work. Babis in the early 90′s got into fertilisers and farming. He bought a bankrupt fertiliser plant in Slovakia and used it to supply new private farms in Moravia and Western Slovakia. With money earned he started to buy farms and expand production. The brilliance was in understanding that what nobody valued in the 90′s – land, old chemical plants, agriculture – was inherently very valuable. Fertile land and food will always be in demand. The lands were also protected from being taken over by foreign capital until EU came in. That made it easier for a local businessman to prosper.

    If you look at today’s Ukraine situation a lot of it has to do with some in the West wanting to get their hands on cheap Ukrainian farming land – that’s one of the prizes in this fight. They would also like to eventually get the Russian lands. All they need is cooperative locals who sell it to them – a one time sale to impoverish one’s country and get some money in exchange, compradors rule. It never changes. Babis did the opposite, good for him.

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  • @Anon

    Babis implemented compulsory receipts for all businesses. To crack down on tax evasion and black market. Were you running your own pub and cheating? Otherwise I don’t understand the anger
     
    Pubs in the Czech Republic are making a pittance, especially in the countryside. I live in the countryside and I would like pubs to remain in operation, and the beer to remain good. Making them pay for installation of electronic cashiers and the subscription of software is not nice. The quality of beer got poorer, the smoking ban, and minimum wage increases will further decimate them. Locals now gather in a clandestine pub, this town will soon stop having normal places to socialise thanks to Babiš.

    And Babis in jail, for what?
     
    I am not anti-Russian, I want our relations with Russia to be less paranoid than you described. But Babiš is suspected of defrauding the EU funds.

    quality of beer got poorer, the smoking ban, and minimum wage increases will further decimate them.

    I have sympathy for the tough business conditions, but, ‘must provide a receipt’ rule is in effect everywhere in EU. Babis implemented basic policy to reduce not declaring income. My solution would be to exempt places like neighbourhood pubs from VAT, or reduce it. A ‘subsidy’ vith non enforcement of tax laws is irrational.

    You are wrong about smoking, non-smokers have a right to go out too. And it is not applied in outdoor restaurants forcing me and my (non-smoking) family to choose between staying indoors or getting poisoned by out of control smoking.

    You are also wrong about minimum wage. Nobody owes a businessman a ‘business’. If he cannot make it by following normal rules, he should not be doing the ‘business’. Paying people close to nothing is very destructive to society. If pubs are desirable (I think they are), let’s subsidise them directly, like ‘culture’, and not by cutting corners.

    The ‘fraud of EU’ is a total bullsh..t. The result of pushing out people like Zeman and Babis will be a more ‘paranoid’ and militaristic Czechia, I think having to pay a few more cents for beer is preferable.

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    • Replies: @Anon

    Babis implemented basic policy to reduce not declaring income.
     
    And the result is once thriving businesses tanking. I heard the tax revenue collected, wherever this EET system has been implemented, is falling because businesses would rather close than comply.

    My solution would be
     
    Bottom line is they didn't... they did not care about the impact this nonsense would have because why would they?

    non-smokers have a right to go out too
     
    If 90% of your patrons are smokers, most non-smokers will be kept out anyway. But if you ban smoking, these 90% of guys will leave you, and the non-smokers will not replace them.

    I am all for non-smoking places. If the barmen were smart, they would ban it themselves because it is slowly killing them, and some pubs have done so long before regulation came from above. I prefer free choice to regulation, it makes like better for everybody.

    Nobody owes a businessman a ‘business’.
     
    You have a very anti-business attitude. The minimum wage increase is ruinous to everyone involved. Businesses will simply get rid of the workers instead of paying them the newly hiked minimum wage. Somebody said that the ultimate minimum wage is 0. Nobody owes workers a job...

    Shops in less populated areas will close because they become unprofitable, shops elsewhere will increase prices to pay for the newly mandate increase in minimum wage.
    , @Anon

    The result of pushing out people like Zeman and Babis will be a more ‘paranoid’ and militaristic Czechia
     
    Militaristic Czechia? if Babiš and Zeman are all that is stopping us from paranoia and militarism, I think paranoia and militarism are not so bad. By the way, the Czech secret service regularly publishes bogus sounding reports about "Russian influence", and this happens under Zeman.

    I knew another allegedly pro-Russian leader in a certain country to the East of Czechia, who was chased out by anti-Russian Nazis that were cultivated under his rule. I am always reminded of that gentleman when I am told that Zeman and Babiš are bulwarks against some nefarious forces.
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  • @The Big Red Scary
    The official story from Hawaii (“Oops! Somebody pushed the wrong button!”) is not very plausible, but I doubt that the public is going to know the real story. Maybe in some decades, maybe never.
    I think that the greatest danger is not that any one side is going to launch a first strike out of the blue, but that one side will become wrongly convinced that the other side has done so, leading to retaliation against an imaginary attack. In such an unequal match-up as North Korea and the United States, I can even imagine the US government deliberately faking such a situation.

    The official story from Hawaii (“Oops! Somebody pushed the wrong button!”) is not very plausible

    Oh, it’s plausible enough. The question is, what was that somebody doing in the vicinity of that button..? I guess they were doing something to the system, making sure it would work, which means they think war is a strong possibility. And both the Japanese and the Hawaii authorities thought that – it could have come from a common source.

    On the other hand there’s the news of a common Korean team at the Olympics.

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  • @Polish Perspective

    Russia is a touchier issue
     
    There was a time when the Czech Republic was considerably more Russia-friendly than Poland, and not that long ago, but those times seem to be evaporating.

    https://s17.postimg.org/r56ivxjn3/russia_approval.png

    It's amazing how bad Russia's approval ratings are. Even Germany(!), historically a sane voice on Russia has been completely brainwashed by American propaganda. At least we Poles have historical excuses to be anti-Russia. What does, say, Sweden have? Or Belgium? What about France? Napoleon? It's really amazing to see how Poland is slowly moving from being hardcore fringe on Russia to being in the fabled center, and not because we have gotten softer but because everyone else has gotten a lot crazier.

    It seems Slovakia still has some balance left in their view of Russia. But that is not really the case anymore for Czechia.


    There is no mainstream political support for refugees

     

    IIRC, even the communists in CR are against refugee quotas. How about the pirates?

    How about the pirates?

    The Pirates are an exception on refugees but they are cautious about voicing themselves about it very much.

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  • Anon • Disclaimer says:
    @Beckow

    I want Babiš out and in jail preferably. His time as a finance minister was ruinous to small business
     
    Babis implemented compulsory receipts for all businesses. To crack down on tax evasion and black market. Were you running your own pub and cheating? Otherwise I don't understand the anger - all of EU has the same policy: you buy something, you get a receipt. A lot of Asian countries don't, maybe you should move your business to those libertarian paradises.

    And Babis in jail, for what? Did he talk to the Russian ambassador, or, God forbid, was caught reading some Russian books?

    Babis implemented compulsory receipts for all businesses. To crack down on tax evasion and black market. Were you running your own pub and cheating? Otherwise I don’t understand the anger

    Pubs in the Czech Republic are making a pittance, especially in the countryside. I live in the countryside and I would like pubs to remain in operation, and the beer to remain good. Making them pay for installation of electronic cashiers and the subscription of software is not nice. The quality of beer got poorer, the smoking ban, and minimum wage increases will further decimate them. Locals now gather in a clandestine pub, this town will soon stop having normal places to socialise thanks to Babiš.

    And Babis in jail, for what?

    I am not anti-Russian, I want our relations with Russia to be less paranoid than you described. But Babiš is suspected of defrauding the EU funds.

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    • Replies: @Beckow

    quality of beer got poorer, the smoking ban, and minimum wage increases will further decimate them.
     
    I have sympathy for the tough business conditions, but, 'must provide a receipt' rule is in effect everywhere in EU. Babis implemented basic policy to reduce not declaring income. My solution would be to exempt places like neighbourhood pubs from VAT, or reduce it. A 'subsidy' vith non enforcement of tax laws is irrational.

    You are wrong about smoking, non-smokers have a right to go out too. And it is not applied in outdoor restaurants forcing me and my (non-smoking) family to choose between staying indoors or getting poisoned by out of control smoking.

    You are also wrong about minimum wage. Nobody owes a businessman a 'business'. If he cannot make it by following normal rules, he should not be doing the 'business'. Paying people close to nothing is very destructive to society. If pubs are desirable (I think they are), let's subsidise them directly, like 'culture', and not by cutting corners.

    The 'fraud of EU' is a total bullsh..t. The result of pushing out people like Zeman and Babis will be a more 'paranoid' and militaristic Czechia, I think having to pay a few more cents for beer is preferable.

    , @Mitleser

    But Babiš is suspected of defrauding the EU funds.
     
    Why does that bother you?
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  • @reiner Tor
    OT

    What do you guys think of the two recent fake warning incidents of incoming Nork nukes, one in Hawaii and the other in Japan..? Apparently they really are quickly preparing these warning systems for a real war, and there are some errors during the crash preparations. So the chances of a real war must be really high, or at least that's what the Japanese and US Hawaiian authorities think. Of course it could've been just a coincidence, but with no fake warnings for decades and now one in Japan and another in the US, the only explanation that makes sense is the systems were being tested or repaired or something in both places and errors occurred...

    I think the Norks also took notice.

    The official story from Hawaii (“Oops! Somebody pushed the wrong button!”) is not very plausible, but I doubt that the public is going to know the real story. Maybe in some decades, maybe never.
    I think that the greatest danger is not that any one side is going to launch a first strike out of the blue, but that one side will become wrongly convinced that the other side has done so, leading to retaliation against an imaginary attack. In such an unequal match-up as North Korea and the United States, I can even imagine the US government deliberately faking such a situation.

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    • Replies: @reiner Tor

    The official story from Hawaii (“Oops! Somebody pushed the wrong button!”) is not very plausible
     
    Oh, it’s plausible enough. The question is, what was that somebody doing in the vicinity of that button..? I guess they were doing something to the system, making sure it would work, which means they think war is a strong possibility. And both the Japanese and the Hawaii authorities thought that - it could have come from a common source.

    On the other hand there’s the news of a common Korean team at the Olympics.
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  • @The Big Red Scary
    What in the hell is that thing!? A stork’s nest?

    that is precisely what it is. In Czech, it is called ‘Čapí hnízdo’, literally ‘stork’s nest’. You can find nice photoshops with it on his head if you image search it

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  • OT

    What do you guys think of the two recent fake warning incidents of incoming Nork nukes, one in Hawaii and the other in Japan..? Apparently they really are quickly preparing these warning systems for a real war, and there are some errors during the crash preparations. So the chances of a real war must be really high, or at least that’s what the Japanese and US Hawaiian authorities think. Of course it could’ve been just a coincidence, but with no fake warnings for decades and now one in Japan and another in the US, the only explanation that makes sense is the systems were being tested or repaired or something in both places and errors occurred…

    I think the Norks also took notice.

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    • Replies: @The Big Red Scary
    The official story from Hawaii (“Oops! Somebody pushed the wrong button!”) is not very plausible, but I doubt that the public is going to know the real story. Maybe in some decades, maybe never.
    I think that the greatest danger is not that any one side is going to launch a first strike out of the blue, but that one side will become wrongly convinced that the other side has done so, leading to retaliation against an imaginary attack. In such an unequal match-up as North Korea and the United States, I can even imagine the US government deliberately faking such a situation.
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  • @ERM
    I am fairly deep in a Czech liberal bubble, inasmuch as I know of absolutely no friend or acquaintance who likes or supports Zeman, and most are bitterly and vocally opposed to him. On the other hand, I know of no one who supports the importation of any more than an absolute token minimum of refugees, if that, so it shows that the political landscape is not quite as simple as advertised. In general, the headline issues that interest foreign journalists and EU partners do not seem to be holding a great deal of sway among the public at large. There is no mainstream political support for refugees, Czechs remain as impotently suspicious of the EU as they have been of every other larger political entity that has ever lorded over them, and no one thinks of the Chinese any more than necessary. Russia is a touchier issue, as there is a very large portion of the public who continue to nurse a grudge but no one really supports deliberately worsening relations, especially people who matter in the economic realm. Russia is not very nearby but nearer than America, and not going away, so best to get along somehow – just not to be seen to be doing so very happily.

    What does matter is the personality and image of Zeman himself. Regardless of what ideological window dressing his opponents put on it, mostly they oppose him on the soundly Trumpian grounds that he is a fat, unhealthy, uninhibited, vulgar slob, which is not what everyone wants in a primarily ceremonial position. Czechs do notoriously take great delight in outrageous breaches of public decorum but they also like to have a strict public decorum to breach. It also comes down to the (I would say accurate) perception that reelecting him would be empowering Babiš, who is the real public enemy number one of these people. His disgraceful and erratic treatment of Sobotka at the end of his government was really the last straw for a lot of people both in terms of Zeman's image and his political behaviour.

    So will he lose? The stated odds seem to overstate the case to me, and I promptly ran off and plunked down a spare $20 on Predictit. It is still quite possible that he will lose but no one is enthusiastic about Drahoš per se, and it is always easier to run as someone (and Zeman is unrepentantly running as himself) than as an anti-something. In any case, Zeman, assuming he still has any marbles, is an exceptionally cunning old fox, and he and his people are already slinging mud at full force, with ten days to go. It would be foolish to count him out.

    There is no mainstream political support for refugees

    I know of Hungarian leftist voters who oppose EU refugee policy and think that not one refugee (Syrian or not) should be allowed into Europe. But they still oppose Orbán and in their blind hatred of him they often think that his policy is of no substance anyway (i.e. the refugee invasion would’ve subsided anyway, he helped the refugees get to Germany, no refugee would’ve come to Hungary anyway, he only made the situation worse, etc.), so they’ll vote for the opposition anyway. Despite knowing well that the opposition will tear down the border fence and change the laws written by Orbán so that it would be much easier for refugees to enter the country.

    As long as voters don’t think that stopping the third world hordes is the #1 issue in Europe and all politicians don’t agree with them, it will be difficult. Maybe the Czech opposition parties want the same immigration restriction as Zeman, but maybe they are more open to folding on the question.

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    • Replies: @Beckow

    as long as voters don’t think that stopping the third world hordes is the #1 issue
     
    That's the key insight that the globalists are exploiting. There are a number of leftist and centrist parties (and some so called Christian ones) that downplay the importance of the migrant issue. When pressed they will say that they oppose 'mass migration', and will say negative things about Merkel, but they insist that it is not 'that important'. That allows for 'new faces' to come in as the urgency of the migration issue is systematically downplayed in the liberal-controlled media.

    90% plus of voters in Central Eastern Europe oppose the globalist population replacement plans. But only 30-40% consider it to be the most important issue. Leftists especially are very susceptible to self-deception. When one tries to explain to them that all 'leftist' policies depend on a balanced labor market and thus control of borders, they go mushy and blabber about 'all people in the world have rights, capitalism is the enemy, etc...' That's the Achilles heel, the inability to even think straight.
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  • Zeman never ever toyed with the idea of leaving the EU. I doubt whether immigration would be enough to get elect a leave populist. There are not going to be any more referendums on EU membership, that is for sure,ritain will have to do well, and others like Sweden will have to follow them out before Chechia would consider it. The Czech Republic is wonderfully well situated to benefit from the EU customs union though so there will have to be an insane number of immigrants.

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    • Replies: @LH
    Just yesterday Czech parliament unanimously agreed on proclamation toward the government to refuse Dublin IV, especially the part about forced relocations.


    If Dublin IV gets implemented it may trigger leaving the EU. The aversion toward the migrants is so massive that even the traditional fearmongering (how we are all going to die without the EU) will fail to stop it.

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  • @bb.
    And Babis in jail, for what?

    Believe it, or not, for taking an EU subsidy in accordance with the law! for building this:

    https://img.mediacentrum.sk/gallery/nwo/maxwidth/990/2649915.jpg

    it's a recreational area open to the public for free with a pet farm, restaurant, sporting venues, concert hall etc.

    The (moral?) crime, they claim, is that if he would apply for the subsidy as the big fish he is, he would not get it. So he did some very legal steps such as apply with a new company, affiliated to him via his children and then transferring it into his portfolio after some time. Shocking and discussing, I know!

    Now the good news for him is, that this kauza as we like to call it, is the best they got on him. Not very freighting if you ask me.

    The other serious deplorableness of his, is his possibly very real affiliation/collaboration with the Secret service some 30 years ago. This however, he can plausibly deny. Also, as with any country in the old bloc, you can literally throw a rock and hit someone who would qualify for the same charge. Vilifying former partaichiky was in a decade ago, today, nobody cares much anyways.

    Also a factor might be, that he is a Zeman-type man. He doesn't mince words much and is very unPC. He is also a Slovak. Some political talking head called him a Barbarian some time ago, that he does not respect our democratic tradition bla bla. (note - some Czechs - the Prager coffeehouse types - have a comically high opinion of themselves)

    I also never really understood their outrage about the new electronic sales tax collection. It's like they are openly saying ''we didn't pay taxes and we are proud of it'' which is admirable on one side but com'on..

    Personally, I think Babis is a freakin genius. Granted, he made most of his fortune through the Common agricultural policy, but he did not invent it, just maximized the profits from it. Everything else is the law of economies of scale and he understood it very quickly in the 90ties. He build a vertically integrated empire and now expands in all kinds of industries.

    caught reading some Russian books?
     
    I remember an interview where he proclaimed something along the lines (shouting in his typical manner) I DON'T HAVE TIME TO READ BOOKS, I HAVE A VISION!

    What in the hell is that thing!? A stork’s nest?

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    • Replies: @bb.
    that is precisely what it is. In Czech, it is called 'Čapí hnízdo', literally 'stork's nest'. You can find nice photoshops with it on his head if you image search it
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  • @ERM
    I am fairly deep in a Czech liberal bubble, inasmuch as I know of absolutely no friend or acquaintance who likes or supports Zeman, and most are bitterly and vocally opposed to him. On the other hand, I know of no one who supports the importation of any more than an absolute token minimum of refugees, if that, so it shows that the political landscape is not quite as simple as advertised. In general, the headline issues that interest foreign journalists and EU partners do not seem to be holding a great deal of sway among the public at large. There is no mainstream political support for refugees, Czechs remain as impotently suspicious of the EU as they have been of every other larger political entity that has ever lorded over them, and no one thinks of the Chinese any more than necessary. Russia is a touchier issue, as there is a very large portion of the public who continue to nurse a grudge but no one really supports deliberately worsening relations, especially people who matter in the economic realm. Russia is not very nearby but nearer than America, and not going away, so best to get along somehow – just not to be seen to be doing so very happily.

    What does matter is the personality and image of Zeman himself. Regardless of what ideological window dressing his opponents put on it, mostly they oppose him on the soundly Trumpian grounds that he is a fat, unhealthy, uninhibited, vulgar slob, which is not what everyone wants in a primarily ceremonial position. Czechs do notoriously take great delight in outrageous breaches of public decorum but they also like to have a strict public decorum to breach. It also comes down to the (I would say accurate) perception that reelecting him would be empowering Babiš, who is the real public enemy number one of these people. His disgraceful and erratic treatment of Sobotka at the end of his government was really the last straw for a lot of people both in terms of Zeman's image and his political behaviour.

    So will he lose? The stated odds seem to overstate the case to me, and I promptly ran off and plunked down a spare $20 on Predictit. It is still quite possible that he will lose but no one is enthusiastic about Drahoš per se, and it is always easier to run as someone (and Zeman is unrepentantly running as himself) than as an anti-something. In any case, Zeman, assuming he still has any marbles, is an exceptionally cunning old fox, and he and his people are already slinging mud at full force, with ten days to go. It would be foolish to count him out.

    Russia is a touchier issue

    There was a time when the Czech Republic was considerably more Russia-friendly than Poland, and not that long ago, but those times seem to be evaporating.

    It’s amazing how bad Russia’s approval ratings are. Even Germany(!), historically a sane voice on Russia has been completely brainwashed by American propaganda. At least we Poles have historical excuses to be anti-Russia. What does, say, Sweden have? Or Belgium? What about France? Napoleon? It’s really amazing to see how Poland is slowly moving from being hardcore fringe on Russia to being in the fabled center, and not because we have gotten softer but because everyone else has gotten a lot crazier.

    It seems Slovakia still has some balance left in their view of Russia. But that is not really the case anymore for Czechia.

    There is no mainstream political support for refugees

    IIRC, even the communists in CR are against refugee quotas. How about the pirates?

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    • Replies: @Anon

    How about the pirates?
     
    The Pirates are an exception on refugees but they are cautious about voicing themselves about it very much.
    , @Mitleser

    It’s amazing how bad Russia’s approval ratings are. Even Germany(!), historically a sane voice on Russia has been completely brainwashed by American propaganda. At least we Poles have historical excuses to be anti-Russia. What does, say, Sweden have? Or Belgium? What about France? Napoleon?
     
    What unites them? EU
    Is the EU opposed to Russia? Yes

    Here lies the answer.

    People overstate American influence on this issue.

    Of course, in response many Russians are also increasingly irritated by EUrope and growing more distant from them.

    Many more Germans and Poles wish to see a rapprochement between the EU and Russia than is the case with people in Russia. In fact, the number of Russians who support renewed rapprochement with the EU has declined markedly over the last year.
     
    https://www.koerber-stiftung.de/fileadmin/user_upload/koerber-stiftung/redaktion/fokusthema_russland-in-europa/pdf/2017/umfrage-russland-in-europa/Executive-Summary_Cold-war-in-peoples-minds_WEB.pdf
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  • scientists against fear and hatred

    I know nothing about him, but I have zero doubts that he is also the type that supports censoring scientists, which ultimately means he is anti science.

    In the greater scheme of things however it does not matter what politician is in power, the country is simply too small to do anything about the flood of third worlders coming into its lands, if Zeman wins then the EU will simply impose the migrant flow one way or the other.

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  • However, I have heard that he is a good debater when he is sober, so he still has chances if he makes a good showing

    in college, I attended a guest lecture given by him – can’t remember the topic but that is not important. It was on business school, full of liberal right wingers, and the auditorium was stacked, people were standing in the hallways. I remember everybody hated him (he just finished as soc dem government prime minister) and wanted to destroy him in QA. Man, how naive we were. I don’t remember the exact discussion and contents but I do remember the atmosphere and feelings, which were complete and utter capitulation on side of the students and faculty staff. He came there, alone, into the lions den, and he completely OWNED the auditorium. He got all the answers and reacted swiftly and mercilessly to every attack against him. That was one of the first red pills in my life and I never looked at politics the same from that day on. I acquired deep respect for the man and respect him to this day, even though his sharpness of mind deteriorated markedly in the last years. I think he still can crush Drahos as a child, if he can find the power to sit through an hour of debate.

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  • Well, the development in Czechia is bit more complicated. First, Milos Zeman’s health visibly deteriorated in the last 2 years and his behaviour has changed, too. This is, methinks, the primary reason why he did not participate in the debates. He has visible troubles just to walk and stand.

    He was always been a good orator that was able to analyse situation quite precisely, this did not change that much, but what changed is the form how he is saying things and linked with his low energy he makes the impression of a grumpy old man.

    In the last election, it was him that was the “healthy and vital” compared to always napping Karel Schwarzenberg. In addition, Zeman’s campaign focused heavily on Schwarzenberg’s wife that does not speak Czech and was also accusing her family of being Nazi collaborators during WW2 etc.

    This time, it is his opponent that is the vital one, was president of Czech academy of Sciences, thus an outsider to politics, with no political history etc., while definitely not that bright considering that he signed (or maybe just forced to do that by the environment) those petitions you mention in the beginning of your text.

    In addition, Zeman being the president for 5 years was center of media attention and managed to offend many people or just occasions continuously by being drunk (being drunk by display of Bohemian crown jewels http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2324457/Drunk-Czech-president-Milos-Zeman-hardly-stand-ceremonial-occasion.html) or by his words, for illustration – only a week and a half ago he called Alexander Dubček, the leader of Czecho-Slovakia in late 1960s, a coward and that he “shitted/pooped” himself in 1968 as he signed Moscow protocol and stepped out of power following the 5 Warszaw Treaty countries invasion of Czecho-Slovakia by Poland, Hungary, East Germany, Bulgaria and USSR. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Dub%C4%8Dek

    To sum this up, I believe that it is not crumbling of the opinions he represents (especially abroad as he is often star of English-language media), but it is rather the crumbling of the messenger.

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  • @Beckow

    I want Babiš out and in jail preferably. His time as a finance minister was ruinous to small business
     
    Babis implemented compulsory receipts for all businesses. To crack down on tax evasion and black market. Were you running your own pub and cheating? Otherwise I don't understand the anger - all of EU has the same policy: you buy something, you get a receipt. A lot of Asian countries don't, maybe you should move your business to those libertarian paradises.

    And Babis in jail, for what? Did he talk to the Russian ambassador, or, God forbid, was caught reading some Russian books?

    And Babis in jail, for what?

    Believe it, or not, for taking an EU subsidy in accordance with the law! for building this:

    it’s a recreational area open to the public for free with a pet farm, restaurant, sporting venues, concert hall etc.

    The (moral?) crime, they claim, is that if he would apply for the subsidy as the big fish he is, he would not get it. So he did some very legal steps such as apply with a new company, affiliated to him via his children and then transferring it into his portfolio after some time. Shocking and discussing, I know!

    Now the good news for him is, that this kauza as we like to call it, is the best they got on him. Not very freighting if you ask me.

    The other serious deplorableness of his, is his possibly very real affiliation/collaboration with the Secret service some 30 years ago. This however, he can plausibly deny. Also, as with any country in the old bloc, you can literally throw a rock and hit someone who would qualify for the same charge. Vilifying former partaichiky was in a decade ago, today, nobody cares much anyways.

    Also a factor might be, that he is a Zeman-type man. He doesn’t mince words much and is very unPC. He is also a Slovak. Some political talking head called him a Barbarian some time ago, that he does not respect our democratic tradition bla bla. (note – some Czechs – the Prager coffeehouse types – have a comically high opinion of themselves)

    I also never really understood their outrage about the new electronic sales tax collection. It’s like they are openly saying ”we didn’t pay taxes and we are proud of it” which is admirable on one side but com’on..

    Personally, I think Babis is a freakin genius. Granted, he made most of his fortune through the Common agricultural policy, but he did not invent it, just maximized the profits from it. Everything else is the law of economies of scale and he understood it very quickly in the 90ties. He build a vertically integrated empire and now expands in all kinds of industries.

    caught reading some Russian books?

    I remember an interview where he proclaimed something along the lines (shouting in his typical manner) I DON’T HAVE TIME TO READ BOOKS, I HAVE A VISION!

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    • LOL: Daniel Chieh
    • Replies: @The Big Red Scary
    What in the hell is that thing!? A stork’s nest?
    , @Beckow
    Capi Hnizdo is a public good, Babis should be thanked for building it. It has made the a region around it better. Thanks for the picture, I will visit...

    real affiliation/collaboration with the Secret service some 30 years ago
     
    Possibly. Babis went to a foreign language High School in Bratislava that was chock-full of the elite kids of people who were running Czechoslovakia at that time. Then he worked in foreign trade, with frequent foreign travel. It makes sense that someone in the 'service' at least talked to him. I don't like it, but frankly all over the world - including US, UK - people in certain positions (journalists, businessmen) are asked by their 'state service' to answer questions, provide insights, and are famously told: 'call us if you see anything of interest'.

    In retrospect this very similar behaviour has been demonised beyond all reason in the old eastern countries. If Czechoslovakia had a legitimate government at that time (it did), it had exactly the same right to protect its interests and security as any other Western country. We might not like the style, but that is a matter of taste. I am sure Babis occasionally had to answer a few 'questions' during his 80's foreign travels.

    By the way, Babis's wealth (and he is very wealthy) is based on a brilliant insight and very hard work. Babis in the early 90's got into fertilisers and farming. He bought a bankrupt fertiliser plant in Slovakia and used it to supply new private farms in Moravia and Western Slovakia. With money earned he started to buy farms and expand production. The brilliance was in understanding that what nobody valued in the 90's - land, old chemical plants, agriculture - was inherently very valuable. Fertile land and food will always be in demand. The lands were also protected from being taken over by foreign capital until EU came in. That made it easier for a local businessman to prosper.

    If you look at today's Ukraine situation a lot of it has to do with some in the West wanting to get their hands on cheap Ukrainian farming land - that's one of the prizes in this fight. They would also like to eventually get the Russian lands. All they need is cooperative locals who sell it to them - a one time sale to impoverish one's country and get some money in exchange, compradors rule. It never changes. Babis did the opposite, good for him.

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  • I am fairly deep in a Czech liberal bubble, inasmuch as I know of absolutely no friend or acquaintance who likes or supports Zeman, and most are bitterly and vocally opposed to him. On the other hand, I know of no one who supports the importation of any more than an absolute token minimum of refugees, if that, so it shows that the political landscape is not quite as simple as advertised. In general, the headline issues that interest foreign journalists and EU partners do not seem to be holding a great deal of sway among the public at large. There is no mainstream political support for refugees, Czechs remain as impotently suspicious of the EU as they have been of every other larger political entity that has ever lorded over them, and no one thinks of the Chinese any more than necessary. Russia is a touchier issue, as there is a very large portion of the public who continue to nurse a grudge but no one really supports deliberately worsening relations, especially people who matter in the economic realm. Russia is not very nearby but nearer than America, and not going away, so best to get along somehow – just not to be seen to be doing so very happily.

    What does matter is the personality and image of Zeman himself. Regardless of what ideological window dressing his opponents put on it, mostly they oppose him on the soundly Trumpian grounds that he is a fat, unhealthy, uninhibited, vulgar slob, which is not what everyone wants in a primarily ceremonial position. Czechs do notoriously take great delight in outrageous breaches of public decorum but they also like to have a strict public decorum to breach. It also comes down to the (I would say accurate) perception that reelecting him would be empowering Babiš, who is the real public enemy number one of these people. His disgraceful and erratic treatment of Sobotka at the end of his government was really the last straw for a lot of people both in terms of Zeman’s image and his political behaviour.

    So will he lose? The stated odds seem to overstate the case to me, and I promptly ran off and plunked down a spare $20 on Predictit. It is still quite possible that he will lose but no one is enthusiastic about Drahoš per se, and it is always easier to run as someone (and Zeman is unrepentantly running as himself) than as an anti-something. In any case, Zeman, assuming he still has any marbles, is an exceptionally cunning old fox, and he and his people are already slinging mud at full force, with ten days to go. It would be foolish to count him out.

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    • Replies: @Polish Perspective

    Russia is a touchier issue
     
    There was a time when the Czech Republic was considerably more Russia-friendly than Poland, and not that long ago, but those times seem to be evaporating.

    https://s17.postimg.org/r56ivxjn3/russia_approval.png

    It's amazing how bad Russia's approval ratings are. Even Germany(!), historically a sane voice on Russia has been completely brainwashed by American propaganda. At least we Poles have historical excuses to be anti-Russia. What does, say, Sweden have? Or Belgium? What about France? Napoleon? It's really amazing to see how Poland is slowly moving from being hardcore fringe on Russia to being in the fabled center, and not because we have gotten softer but because everyone else has gotten a lot crazier.

    It seems Slovakia still has some balance left in their view of Russia. But that is not really the case anymore for Czechia.


    There is no mainstream political support for refugees

     

    IIRC, even the communists in CR are against refugee quotas. How about the pirates?
    , @reiner Tor

    There is no mainstream political support for refugees
     
    I know of Hungarian leftist voters who oppose EU refugee policy and think that not one refugee (Syrian or not) should be allowed into Europe. But they still oppose Orbán and in their blind hatred of him they often think that his policy is of no substance anyway (i.e. the refugee invasion would've subsided anyway, he helped the refugees get to Germany, no refugee would've come to Hungary anyway, he only made the situation worse, etc.), so they'll vote for the opposition anyway. Despite knowing well that the opposition will tear down the border fence and change the laws written by Orbán so that it would be much easier for refugees to enter the country.

    As long as voters don't think that stopping the third world hordes is the #1 issue in Europe and all politicians don't agree with them, it will be difficult. Maybe the Czech opposition parties want the same immigration restriction as Zeman, but maybe they are more open to folding on the question.
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  • It’s almost an alt-right proverb now that ‘democracy’ doesn’t work because

    Majority of women – sub-consciously eager for more males to compete for their charms, thus ‘refugees welcome’ -

    Plus cucked males, equals democratic majority in voting, and that combination will always outvote the intrinsically-minority group of ‘based’ males

    The ‘original flaw’ of modern democracy, is thus, some say, ‘women getting the right to vote’

    In 1934 British scholar J D Unwin published a book on ‘Sex & Culture’, now oft-cited by the Alt-Right ‘manosphere’ … Unwin, fascinated by Lenin’s disastrous experiment with easy divorce in Russia, began to historically investigate matters over the centuries … he concluded that, without fail, ‘women’s rights’ led to the eventual implosion & collapse of societies, as shown in repeated patterns including ancient Babylon & Rome

    Unwin said that gynarchic privileges eventually wreck the family arrangements that undergird civilisation, as it is only when males have stability with monogamous spouses, that civilisation can flower … if women have lots of ‘rights’ they sabotage marriages so they can go back to hunting one of the 20% of males who are ‘alpha’ in style, leaving most males to just be sources of state-extracted income

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    • Replies: @dfordoom

    Unwin said that gynarchic privileges eventually wreck the family arrangements that undergird civilisation, as it is only when males have stability with monogamous spouses, that civilisation can flower … if women have lots of ‘rights’ they sabotage marriages so they can go back to hunting one of the 20% of males who are ‘alpha’ in style, leaving most males to just be sources of state-extracted income
     
    I'd say that Unwin was right on the money.
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  • @peterAUS

    People aren’t comfortable with leaders who seem much more intelligent than they are.
     
    That's an interesting point.
    Where did you get that? Link would be sufficient.

    I've always thought that's exactly what people would want. Or, at least, I know that's what I'd want.

    I am sure that even here most people would want those who rule over them to be more intelligent than them.

    Or I am missing something?

    Just personal observation. People want competence, which although correlated with intelligence, isn’t exactly the same thing. Gorbachev, Pol Pot and Hitler were certainly far above average IQ.

    Do you really think all those people voted for Trump because they really thought he was not just a genius, but a very stable genius?

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  • @German_reader
    Sure, but I'm just irritated that this actually worked and many people fell for the line of Macron being an outsider out to reform the system etc. But then most people are amazingly stupid.

    On the other hand, Macron is actually delivering roughly as much of the Trump agenda as Trump himself. Which is not much, but not as bad as I feared. I’m not even sure if Le Pen would’ve done more: isolated politicians cannot do much. Besides, rightist politicians always have the temptation to cuck. Pragmatic politicians coming from the left are, on the other hand, more prone to try to pander to their new rightist constituency, in other words, it’s easier for them to conduct actual rightist policies. Yes, I’m thinking of you, Orbán.

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  • @Mitleser
    Macron was THE establishment candidate after Juppe lost.
    He got all the establishment support.
    That is the main reason he won.

    Sure, but I’m just irritated that this actually worked and many people fell for the line of Macron being an outsider out to reform the system etc. But then most people are amazingly stupid.

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    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    On the other hand, Macron is actually delivering roughly as much of the Trump agenda as Trump himself. Which is not much, but not as bad as I feared. I’m not even sure if Le Pen would’ve done more: isolated politicians cannot do much. Besides, rightist politicians always have the temptation to cuck. Pragmatic politicians coming from the left are, on the other hand, more prone to try to pander to their new rightist constituency, in other words, it’s easier for them to conduct actual rightist policies. Yes, I’m thinking of you, Orbán.
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  • @German_reader

    The system posse has figured out in the last few years that one way to block populism is by using a new fresh face, often a non-politician. Bellen (?) in Austria
     
    Van der Bellen wasn't really a non-politician though, I just checked on Wikipedia, he was a member of parliament for the Austrian Greens from 1994 to 2012, and was party leader of the Greens from 1997 to 2008. It's true he ran as an independent during the presidential campaign, and mabye some people were fooled by that...but tbh they must have been pretty dumb in that case.
    But of course there's a stunning example for what you've described above with Macron, I still don't quite understand the sudden rise of that guy and his movement (even if he had some prior political experience as minister).

    Macron was THE establishment candidate after Juppe lost.
    He got all the establishment support.
    That is the main reason he won.

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    • Replies: @German_reader
    Sure, but I'm just irritated that this actually worked and many people fell for the line of Macron being an outsider out to reform the system etc. But then most people are amazingly stupid.
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  • @German_reader

    The system posse has figured out in the last few years that one way to block populism is by using a new fresh face, often a non-politician. Bellen (?) in Austria
     
    Van der Bellen wasn't really a non-politician though, I just checked on Wikipedia, he was a member of parliament for the Austrian Greens from 1994 to 2012, and was party leader of the Greens from 1997 to 2008. It's true he ran as an independent during the presidential campaign, and mabye some people were fooled by that...but tbh they must have been pretty dumb in that case.
    But of course there's a stunning example for what you've described above with Macron, I still don't quite understand the sudden rise of that guy and his movement (even if he had some prior political experience as minister).

    The categories are not that clear-cut, people like Van der Bellen or Macron had some political background, but they were promoted as fresh new faces. In some ways – like Drahos in Czechia – they were brought on the scene because the establishment Team A was so obviously failing. The risk is that this can only be done effectively once (maybe twice) and then what? It also really pisses off the career politicians who plod cautiously from one promotion to next, only to see some relative outsiders jump over them. That makes this technique of ‘new faces’ destabilising.

    Promoting the ‘outsiders’ is an admission that the system doesn’t work any more. It will be used more and more, because otherwise the populist electoral impulse would win quite easily. But the destabilising technique will create competition to be the ‘new thing’ (people are naturally ambitious) and this competition will naturally gravitate towards the popular populist issues. Macron has kind of started in that direction already. This is not good for the system.

    Macron appealed to undecided, bashful, risk-averse and women who saw him as a clean-cut, polite young man. Drahos has some of the same appeal, but in Czech context the ‘expertise’ and his Acadey background are very important. These are after all people who insist that a lady trimming nails needs to be a ‘nail expert’. A bit of a Habsburg era throwback.

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  • @Beckow
    You are right, it doesn't look promising for Zeman. But Zeman is a unique kind of a politician - he used to be a socialist prime minister. He is a contrarian but firmly a part of the system. He is also old, mostly drunk, bored, and has dropped all behavioural constraints.

    The split between annoying liberal Prague (and a few urban enclaves) and the rest of the country mirrors Trump, La Pen, etc... but there are differences. For example Trump was a newbie, as is to some extent Macron. Drahos is a new face too, that's part of his appeal.

    The system posse has figured out in the last few years that one way to block populism is by using a new fresh face, often a non-politician. Bellen (?) in Austria, Drahos, or Kiska in Slovakia (Kiska literally used to pump gas in New Jersey as a despondent one-time immigrant to US, then someone discovered him). That move usually suggests that we are heading towards the end of a cycle - it is done out of desperation, it can only work so many times, and it pisses off the career politicians. Risky and destabilising.

    Finally, as Zeman put it: Czechia is a 'mediacracy', the media runs its own political agenda, they are totally on the side of Prague liberals, even the state-controlled media. And having that control gets you 15-20% extra votes (old ladies and young hipsters), especially for a 'new face'. It is not over, migration policy won't change, but it is symbolically a loss.

    The system posse has figured out in the last few years that one way to block populism is by using a new fresh face, often a non-politician. Bellen (?) in Austria

    Van der Bellen wasn’t really a non-politician though, I just checked on Wikipedia, he was a member of parliament for the Austrian Greens from 1994 to 2012, and was party leader of the Greens from 1997 to 2008. It’s true he ran as an independent during the presidential campaign, and mabye some people were fooled by that…but tbh they must have been pretty dumb in that case.
    But of course there’s a stunning example for what you’ve described above with Macron, I still don’t quite understand the sudden rise of that guy and his movement (even if he had some prior political experience as minister).

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    • Replies: @Beckow
    The categories are not that clear-cut, people like Van der Bellen or Macron had some political background, but they were promoted as fresh new faces. In some ways - like Drahos in Czechia - they were brought on the scene because the establishment Team A was so obviously failing. The risk is that this can only be done effectively once (maybe twice) and then what? It also really pisses off the career politicians who plod cautiously from one promotion to next, only to see some relative outsiders jump over them. That makes this technique of 'new faces' destabilising.

    Promoting the 'outsiders' is an admission that the system doesn't work any more. It will be used more and more, because otherwise the populist electoral impulse would win quite easily. But the destabilising technique will create competition to be the 'new thing' (people are naturally ambitious) and this competition will naturally gravitate towards the popular populist issues. Macron has kind of started in that direction already. This is not good for the system.

    Macron appealed to undecided, bashful, risk-averse and women who saw him as a clean-cut, polite young man. Drahos has some of the same appeal, but in Czech context the 'expertise' and his Acadey background are very important. These are after all people who insist that a lady trimming nails needs to be a 'nail expert'. A bit of a Habsburg era throwback.
    , @Mitleser
    Macron was THE establishment candidate after Juppe lost.
    He got all the establishment support.
    That is the main reason he won.
    , @John Gruskos
    So much for the alleged "based atheists" of Czechia.

    The only solid opposition to globalism and cultural Marxism comes from Western nations with robust Christian religiosity - proverbially Catholic Poland, Hungary where the constitution of 2010 declares Hungary to be a Christian nation, the American Bible Belt, traditionalist Catholic enclaves in southern France, Ulster, Orania, etc.
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  • @Anon
    The Czech president does not have much executive power, hence it is not important who will win. Babiš's short time in the sun ended yesterday when the other parties, including Okamura's SPD, ganged up on ANO, and gave his government a no-confidence vote.

    I personally voted for the Pirates because I knew they will not support Babiš. I want Babiš out and in jail preferably. His time as a finance minister was ruinous to small business, and badly influenced the quality of beer in pubs. And that's unforgivable.

    But the Pirates are dirty leftist scum and welcomers of refugees, come next election I will vote for either Okamura or ODS. I will not vote for either Drahoš or Zeman. Zeman by the way is not pro-Russian, he is firmly pro-NATO and pro-EU. The election of Drahoš will further solidify the undoing of Babiš.

    As for stinky rent seeking refugees that Germany wants to resettle here. I don't see any serious political force that would like to be seen as welcoming refugees. That would be political suicide.

    I want Babiš out and in jail preferably. His time as a finance minister was ruinous to small business

    Babis implemented compulsory receipts for all businesses. To crack down on tax evasion and black market. Were you running your own pub and cheating? Otherwise I don’t understand the anger – all of EU has the same policy: you buy something, you get a receipt. A lot of Asian countries don’t, maybe you should move your business to those libertarian paradises.

    And Babis in jail, for what? Did he talk to the Russian ambassador, or, God forbid, was caught reading some Russian books?

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    • Replies: @bb.
    And Babis in jail, for what?

    Believe it, or not, for taking an EU subsidy in accordance with the law! for building this:

    https://img.mediacentrum.sk/gallery/nwo/maxwidth/990/2649915.jpg

    it's a recreational area open to the public for free with a pet farm, restaurant, sporting venues, concert hall etc.

    The (moral?) crime, they claim, is that if he would apply for the subsidy as the big fish he is, he would not get it. So he did some very legal steps such as apply with a new company, affiliated to him via his children and then transferring it into his portfolio after some time. Shocking and discussing, I know!

    Now the good news for him is, that this kauza as we like to call it, is the best they got on him. Not very freighting if you ask me.

    The other serious deplorableness of his, is his possibly very real affiliation/collaboration with the Secret service some 30 years ago. This however, he can plausibly deny. Also, as with any country in the old bloc, you can literally throw a rock and hit someone who would qualify for the same charge. Vilifying former partaichiky was in a decade ago, today, nobody cares much anyways.

    Also a factor might be, that he is a Zeman-type man. He doesn't mince words much and is very unPC. He is also a Slovak. Some political talking head called him a Barbarian some time ago, that he does not respect our democratic tradition bla bla. (note - some Czechs - the Prager coffeehouse types - have a comically high opinion of themselves)

    I also never really understood their outrage about the new electronic sales tax collection. It's like they are openly saying ''we didn't pay taxes and we are proud of it'' which is admirable on one side but com'on..

    Personally, I think Babis is a freakin genius. Granted, he made most of his fortune through the Common agricultural policy, but he did not invent it, just maximized the profits from it. Everything else is the law of economies of scale and he understood it very quickly in the 90ties. He build a vertically integrated empire and now expands in all kinds of industries.

    caught reading some Russian books?
     
    I remember an interview where he proclaimed something along the lines (shouting in his typical manner) I DON'T HAVE TIME TO READ BOOKS, I HAVE A VISION!
    , @Anon

    Babis implemented compulsory receipts for all businesses. To crack down on tax evasion and black market. Were you running your own pub and cheating? Otherwise I don’t understand the anger
     
    Pubs in the Czech Republic are making a pittance, especially in the countryside. I live in the countryside and I would like pubs to remain in operation, and the beer to remain good. Making them pay for installation of electronic cashiers and the subscription of software is not nice. The quality of beer got poorer, the smoking ban, and minimum wage increases will further decimate them. Locals now gather in a clandestine pub, this town will soon stop having normal places to socialise thanks to Babiš.

    And Babis in jail, for what?
     
    I am not anti-Russian, I want our relations with Russia to be less paranoid than you described. But Babiš is suspected of defrauding the EU funds.
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  • @anon
    I think the day may come when eastern Europeans look back nostalgically on the iron curtain. It kept their countries homogeneous.

    You are right, it doesn’t look promising for Zeman. But Zeman is a unique kind of a politician – he used to be a socialist prime minister. He is a contrarian but firmly a part of the system. He is also old, mostly drunk, bored, and has dropped all behavioural constraints.

    The split between annoying liberal Prague (and a few urban enclaves) and the rest of the country mirrors Trump, La Pen, etc… but there are differences. For example Trump was a newbie, as is to some extent Macron. Drahos is a new face too, that’s part of his appeal.

    The system posse has figured out in the last few years that one way to block populism is by using a new fresh face, often a non-politician. Bellen (?) in Austria, Drahos, or Kiska in Slovakia (Kiska literally used to pump gas in New Jersey as a despondent one-time immigrant to US, then someone discovered him). That move usually suggests that we are heading towards the end of a cycle – it is done out of desperation, it can only work so many times, and it pisses off the career politicians. Risky and destabilising.

    Finally, as Zeman put it: Czechia is a ‘mediacracy’, the media runs its own political agenda, they are totally on the side of Prague liberals, even the state-controlled media. And having that control gets you 15-20% extra votes (old ladies and young hipsters), especially for a ‘new face’. It is not over, migration policy won’t change, but it is symbolically a loss.

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    • Replies: @German_reader

    The system posse has figured out in the last few years that one way to block populism is by using a new fresh face, often a non-politician. Bellen (?) in Austria
     
    Van der Bellen wasn't really a non-politician though, I just checked on Wikipedia, he was a member of parliament for the Austrian Greens from 1994 to 2012, and was party leader of the Greens from 1997 to 2008. It's true he ran as an independent during the presidential campaign, and mabye some people were fooled by that...but tbh they must have been pretty dumb in that case.
    But of course there's a stunning example for what you've described above with Macron, I still don't quite understand the sudden rise of that guy and his movement (even if he had some prior political experience as minister).
    , @22pp22
    Macron is not a Newbie. He could not be more of an insider than he is. He's been groomed ever since he was at the Ecole Nationale d'Administration
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  • I think the day may come when eastern Europeans look back nostalgically on the iron curtain. It kept their countries homogeneous.

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    • Replies: @Beckow
    You are right, it doesn't look promising for Zeman. But Zeman is a unique kind of a politician - he used to be a socialist prime minister. He is a contrarian but firmly a part of the system. He is also old, mostly drunk, bored, and has dropped all behavioural constraints.

    The split between annoying liberal Prague (and a few urban enclaves) and the rest of the country mirrors Trump, La Pen, etc... but there are differences. For example Trump was a newbie, as is to some extent Macron. Drahos is a new face too, that's part of his appeal.

    The system posse has figured out in the last few years that one way to block populism is by using a new fresh face, often a non-politician. Bellen (?) in Austria, Drahos, or Kiska in Slovakia (Kiska literally used to pump gas in New Jersey as a despondent one-time immigrant to US, then someone discovered him). That move usually suggests that we are heading towards the end of a cycle - it is done out of desperation, it can only work so many times, and it pisses off the career politicians. Risky and destabilising.

    Finally, as Zeman put it: Czechia is a 'mediacracy', the media runs its own political agenda, they are totally on the side of Prague liberals, even the state-controlled media. And having that control gets you 15-20% extra votes (old ladies and young hipsters), especially for a 'new face'. It is not over, migration policy won't change, but it is symbolically a loss.

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  • 3.2% and a graph that looks like that. It’s called electoral fraud.

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