– Did you hear that Czechs appointed the new minister of fishing and maritime industry?
– What? Why? They are a landlocked country, they don’t have access to the sea!
– Well, Poland has the Ministry of Justice and nobody seems for that to be any problem…
This is a joke that I saw a couple of times recently in Social media. It has been prompted by the scandal uncovered by portal Onet.pl. Apparently some high-placed officials in Ministry of Justice (including deputy minister Łukasz Plebiak) were feeding secret documents (often containing private matters) of the judges who oppose PiS’s take-over of the justice system to a network of internet trolls. The trolls were then encouraged to leak them to pro-government journalists to spread damage to the judges as wide as possible. The key figure of this scandal, a wife of one of the judges working in the ministry, disclosed her records of conversation with the officials to the press after she lost her fanatic faith in PiS. Her husband quickly issued a statement in which he accused her of being alcoholic and mentally unstable.
The group also organized hate campaigns, such as the action of sending a postcard to the Chairwoman of the High Court with the words “fuck off” on them. According to leaked conversations, this particular idea came from one of the judges in the Highest Disciplinary Court – so from the man, who is responsible for making sure, that Polish judges are upholding the highest standards of conduct!
PiS tries to swipe the case under the carpet: despite that leaked conversation suggest that “minister gave the green light”, the prime minister accepted minister Ziobro’s explanation that he was not aware of any of those things. The case will be investigated by a prosecutor, who is most known from dissolving the cases in which PiS politicians could be found guilty. PiS activists initially tried to play it as “war between the judges” (as those officials from the ministry were often judges as well), thus suggesting that PiS’ reforms of the justice system are even more urgent. Meanwhile, TVP came up with the accusations that one of the most industrious opposition MP’s has been running the network of trolls when working in Inowrocław city council back in 2014 in an attempt to cover the scandal.
We are in this strange situation, that both Ministry of Justice and Ministry of Internal Affairs are now run by the men of, to say it diplomatically, shady history with the law: the latter has just been taken over by Mariusz Kamiński – the very man sentenced to three years in prison for abuse of power, then illegally pardoned by President Duda. Zbigniew Ziobro has narrowly escaped being put in front of state Tribunal – perhaps thanks to the fact, that at the end of his previous reign as a justice minister back in 2008, his and his subordinates laptops were mysteriously smashed to pieces. Meanwhile, president Duda just signed without hesitation a new act, which will, amongst other things, allow for the prosecution to keep people in jail even after the court ordered them to be released…
Regarding the matter of the list of supporters who recommended new judges to the newly elected puppet National Judiciary Council that are to kept secret despite the ruling of the Highest Administrative Court, PiS now asked their puppet Constitutional Tribunal to “freeze” them, so the matter won’t go public before elections. PiS says, those lists need to remain secret, as the judges who supported new candidates to the Council can be met with public criticism and ostracism – but that’s the very point: they need to face consequences, they supported unlawful take-over of the judicial system!
But this is not the only crisis that PiS is trying to extinguish before elections. Although Marek Kuchciński, speaker of the parliament’s lower chamber stepped down after being accused of abusing his privilege and using the government jets as his private taxi, he is not out of the water yet: there is another scandal involving his name, and this time the matter is much more serious: he has been accused of using under-age prostitutes and it seems like someone is desperate to cover all tracks. Recently yet another witness to this case was found dead in prison. He was the third one to be found dead in suspicious circumstances, no wonder that opposition politicians are calling for the last one that remains alive to be taken under witness protection scheme…
But Kuchciński is not the only speaker in trouble. Speaker of Senate was also caught under fire after it has emerged, that the Senate pays for his luxury accommodation. He doesn’t see it as a problem, as the villa belongs to the state, so he actually does the budget a favour, as if not for him living there, it would be empty. And the money just goes from one pocket to another, so in fact, it costs nothing anyway.
And as if it was not enough already, those pesky people from the opposition make it even harder for PiS to win elections. A few weeks back they complained after TVP informed about PiS candidates in oncoming elections, accusing it of being biased and not informing about candidates from other parties:
Tak działać może tylko partyjne medium. W TVP Info włączyli dedykowany pasek z “jedynkami” na listach PiS. Ma się utrwalić w pamięci widza, aby ten zaznaczył właściwe nazwisko na karcie wyborczej. Obrzydliwe. pic.twitter.com/jom4sCJXTh
— Patryk Wachowiec (@PatrykWachowiec) July 14, 2019
In response, TVP informed that if the opposition doesn’t like it, they won’t be informed about candidates any more – but of course, PiS candidates have already been promoted.
Apart from that, life in Poland goes as usual. The state still protects aggressive right-wing hooligans:
– the court in Kielce ruled, that football hooligans shouting “no to Islamic savages” and “refugees fuck off” is not inciting violence, but simply expressing one’s views, to which everyone is entitled.
– the jogger who narrowly escaped being stabbed by a man, who thought he was gay, was told by the police, that it was not a homophobic incident, because even though the attacker was thinking that he is stabbing a gay person, he was obviously mistaken.
– the right-wing activists, who attacked Pride March in Białystok, were awarded a 700 000 zł grant – one of the biggest grants paid to NGO’s. Many other highest grants were also awarded to NGO’s related PiS politicians and supporters.
Public outrage was sparked after a tabloid informed, that government fleets consist of more than 1700 limos, while there are only about 1500 ambulances in the whole of Poland. The outrage quickly died after it had emerged, that this data is from 2014 when Platforma Obywatelska was still in power. I wondered what the numbers would be today – would the amount of newly bought limos exceed the number of crashed limos, but somehow no media outlets followed up on this. Which says something about the opposition media in Poland as well: if it cannot be used to attack PiS, they are rarely interested.
The Ministry of Environment allowed hunters to kill 1270 of golden jackals, animals that only recently emerged in Poland and according to experts only 10 of those animals were so far spotted in Poland, of which 6 are dead already. But hunters feel they have reason to celebrate – for years they wanted to kill wolves, and while this has not been legalized, the jackals can be very easily mistaken for them, so they can shoot wolves and claim, that they thought that they are aiming at jackals…
In foreign politics: a PiS MEP, who claimed that Swedes seek refugee in Poland after their country became uninhabitable due to widespread LGBT and invasion of Muslim refugees got a good bashing from Swedish Minister of Justice and Migration, who after quoting some numbers showing that it is, in fact, the other way round – Poles move to Sweden in great numbers – and then politely asked if she could do anything with the gangs of Polish criminals, who became a nuisance in Sweden over some recent years.
Beata Szydło is now also an MEP, but it does not stop her from causing havoc on the Polish roads. This time she was driving herself, as she no longer uses government limo, and failed to give way to a vehicle that had a priority. Of course, even though she accepted the blame and paid the ticket, the PiS media wrote about it as if it was the other driver’s fault.
Speaking of which, PiS controlled media slowly become a parody of themselves. In holiday issue of Czas Stefczyka – a magazine issued by a network of the cooperative banks controlled by PiS – apart from topic related to finances one could read the following articles:
– “Donald Tusk – a demolition man. Today he is not a statesman at all, just a huge, deflated balloon”;
– “Former ambassadors [who wrote some open letters criticizing foreign politics of PiS etc. – TO] could simply shut up if they really care about Polish raison d’etat”;
– “Poland is a strong country after all if it survived prime minister like this” (illustrated by a picture of Ewa Kopacz)
– and a terrifying piece about how Poland has to face neo-Marxist attacks from stupid EU officials, who try to flood our country with homosexual disease…
Keep in mind: this is, in theory, a company-issued magazine for its customers, not a propaganda pamphlet from PiS or the Polish church… By the way: remember that bishop, who called LGBT community “a rainbowy plague” (see Cuckooland 104)? The church has suspended… Not, not him. They have suspended a Dominican Friar who protested against his words and called for him to step down. The bishop himself has got official support from other bishops. Meanwhile, other members of clergy keep on the fight: in Pcim a priest criticized a mural painted by children in assistance of some NGO. According to him it is unacceptable, as said NGO supports LGBT rights, and therefore the rooster painted by children is not just a bird, but “a symbol of betrayal, the worst betrayal – that of St Peter”. But what he should do? Aren’t priests obliged to serve their flock? And the flock has clear demands. A priest in Błaszki received denunciation from local people. They were outraged after finding that a son of a headteacher in their local primary school is a gay activist, and yet his mother has not disowned him. Should such people be allowed to shape the minds of the children?
An example of a proper Polish family defending Christian values can be seen in the movie before: first you can hear the mother expressing her views, then you can see her in action:
And PiS also responds to the will of the people, walking arm in arm with the Church. One of their MP came up with the idea that in school books and museums the words “Before common era” and “common era” should be replaced with words “before Christ” and “After Christ”. I am up for that. It would be really amusing to hear that “Christ was crucified in 33rd year after Christ” 🙂
But this is nothing unusual: in Poland, science has often given way to religion. After lightings struck the crowd on the top of Giewont, a famous summit in Tatra mountains, killing 4 people and injuring over 100, a discussion about a 15 m tall cross placed there a century ago returned. It is considered to be a magnet for lightings, but before any physicists were able to speak, the whole discussion has been quickly derailed, and so now it is all about leftists destroy yet another element of our Christian heritage…
But it can get even better. Catholic movements petitioned the government to introduce a new law that would ban “introducing social and political novelties” unless they were observed in the West for at least 200 years. I wonder if the authors of that idea are aware, that things like free weekends, ban on child labour, women’s vote or indeed the Internet have been observed in the West for much less than two centuries…
Main picture: march of suffragettes, a movement demanding social-political changes, still not properly tested in the West (public domain).
This piece was published in Britské Listy