According to the transatlantic media, last local and regional elections results mean such a defeat of nationalist and economically interventionist Law and Justice. Could you spell out that fact from your standpoint? What is the election forecast for next year legislative elections?
Yes, that is true. Ruling party Law and Justice won regional elections with 34,13% score and has the most deputies for next five years of term. It is huge change, because since this year the term of regional offices has been extended from four to five years, but also you cannot be a regional deputy for more, than 2 terms of office.
When we talk about regional elections we also need to know, that a lot of candidates, although they was at Law and Justice electoral list, it doesn’t mean they are members of ruling party or support the party in interventionist policy. Regional elections are specific and you mostly vote for very defined person, than for a party. A lot of my friends, also from KoLiber Association, was a candidates at different electoral lists – some of them from Law and Justice, but from Citizen Coalition or Liberty Party either.
A lot of polls, not only government’s, but also independents and private ones, tells, that next legislative elections might win Law and Justice party – again. Polish political scene is very poor, I mean – there is not a good alternative for conservative liberal person to choose the best party, because barely we got nobody at lists – maybe just few people, included, e.g. Jakub Kulesza from KoLiber Association.
Since last year, the government party is trying to deteriorate the Rule of Law trying to exert control over the KRS and the Constitutional Court -it has led to intense center-leftist opposition protests, as in to a European Commission threat of denying Poland’s right to vote in the communitarian parliament. According to you, why are those protests and movements fiercer than with it comes to countries like Spain?
According to this difficult legal situation with KRS and Constitutional Court, European Union extorted on polish parliament to modify law and most of harmful amendments has been refused.
Well, it is difficult to unequivocal define this specific conditions. I think that Poles are aware enough to well understanding political scene and through our history we know how dangerous is political intervention in independent institutions like Constitutional Court.
Many Western conservatives congratulate Polish and Hungarian government for its economical policies to boost fertility rate. Is Poland 500+ plan -based on subsidies- is being as efficient as some analyst may believe?
I have to say that it is not efficient as it may be present by some analysts or government itself. In my opinion Family 500+ is such a harmful program for central budget. Let’s take a look – in budget law for 2018 outgoings has been established for almost 400 billions PLN (92.03 billions EUR), but incomes for only 355 billions PLN (82.71 billions EUR). Family 500+ costs around 25 billions PLN (5.82 billions EUR) per year. My question is – if government got such a hole in central budget why they create new social program? It doesn’t make any economical sense for a lot of reasons. You cannot create a welfare by taking money from citizens, hiring new bureaucrats and then – giving them money back for selected people.
This policy has more consequences – according to GUS (Central Statistical Office) since 2016 – when Family 500+ has been launched – parents who receive money for children are less proactive on work market, than carers who do not receive such support. It means less employers and lowest incomes from taxes.
If government wants to help for families by giving them 500 PLN (~120 EUR) per child, why parents cannot get special privilege in tax policy? It is not a good idea to divide people and giving some of them privileges, but it would be better solution, than Family 500+.
Surprisingly the Polish government seems to be putting obstacles against the pro-life law reform. How likely is Law and Justice to pass that initiative? By the way, what about the promotion of totalitarian gender ideology in your country?
This is great example about Law and Justice policy. Few days ago in Kiev I was speaking about hypocrisy of ruling party in that area. Why they call themselves as „catholics” if they do not stand for sanctity of human life? What is more interesting – they did it twice!
Personally, I do not see much promote of gender ideology right now. Polish society is more conservative, than western countries and that problem is not such harmful than economical policy by Law and Justice.
Poland is considered a strongly Catholic and very conservative country. However there are differences between its voivodeships -for example, Gdansk is one of the most progressive cities in that Slavic country. What is the context of that internationally unknown “heterogeneity”?
I think that depends, inter alia, from people being in power in specific voivodeship. Authorities in Gdańsk or Warsaw are more liberal-oriented than, e.g in eastern parts of Poland. This is consequence of polish difficult history – Poland was divided between three empires – Prussia, Austria-Hungary and Russia. Eastern parts of my country is more conservative, then western ones.
Contrary to America and Western Europe, young Poles do not only keep defending life, family and tradition. They seem to embrace laissez-faire and free-market principles with more conviction than their forebears. Might Poland become the European Texas in a long term?
Yes, they are a lot of free-market supporters in Poland, mostly among young people. Our parents lived in communist Poland and they could not get capitalists principles. Thanks to political transformation in late 80’ and early 90’ we, new generation could learn – and now teach our younger friends – about free-market, capitalist and how to create a welfare through hard work, not by political rules and social benefits.
Well, it would be great to see how Poland transform into „European Texas”, but unfortunately – we do not have good representation of free-market values in polish parliament. Right now, however there is a lot of us – capitalism supporters – we still do not have much opportunities to take a power or even get enough of deputies to create new, free-market Poland. In parliament there is just few deputies supporting capitalism and being hard-working enough to make a difference and that is why polish economy getting more and more statist.
Being aware a out that facts we work a lot as KoLiber Association to learn a out free-market and promote capitalism – we believe that our work is going to pay back in next years.