Archive for August, 2009

Minority minorities and the majority (or “party like it’s 1995″)

Today’s SME reports “Ministry: Representatives of minorities supported amendment on the state language (http://www.sme.sk/c/4994369/ministerstvo-predstavitelia-mensin-podporili-novelu-o-statnom-jazyku.html).  We learn in the article that: Predstavitelia chorvátskej, rusínskej, nemeckej, bulharskej, poľskej a ruskej menšiny na dnešnom zasadnutí Rady vlády SR pre národnostné menšiny a etnické skupiny vyjadrili podporné stanovisko k prijatej novele zákona o štátnom jazyku. Which translates roughly as: […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Euroblindness, again, briefly

Douglas Muir at A Fistful of Euros has interesting things to say about a Radio Free Europe report that “Azerbaijani Authorities Interrogate Music Fan Over Eurovision Vote For Armenia” So maybe my unhealthy interest in Eurovision isn’t completely irrevant.  (Update: even the New York Times finds this interesting: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/31/arts/television/31iht-eurovision.html?_r=1) In any case, it is an […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Wanted: Effective journalism in Slovakia

I know Slovakia’s journalists are overtaxed with all that is required of them, but there are things they could do to make things better without too much extra work.  Case in point: today all major Slovak news sources today report, almost word for word, a press release from the firm Median reporting poll results from […]

Read the rest of this entry »

August 2009 Poll Results: Bending The Mold

The pattern looks familiar and the lines haven’t changed much, but there are a few ways that this month’s results by FOCUS change our understanding of the current political competition. I have actually been fearing this change for a long time–not because of the actual politics involved but because of the emergence of a new […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Infinite Recursion

This headline is from Vice Premier Dusan Caplovic is too piquant to ignore: “Protirómsky extrémizmus je importovaný od susedov” Literal translation: Anti-Roma extremism is imported from neighbors Metaphorical translation: Foreigners are the cause of all of our problems including our xenophobia. Slovak national extremists apparently are keen to learn from their Hungarian counterparts.  Could this […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Fico on Dzurinda: What it’s all about.

While I do not often write about particular political statements,  I am drawn to comment on today’s response by Robert Fico to Mikulas Dzurinda’s accusations that the government has failed to tap Eurofunds.  I translate Fico’s statement as follows (and would appreciate any better translation): My political conscience cannot be a person like Mikulas Dzurinda, […]

Read the rest of this entry »

African Democracy Project Mozambique

In October my university will be sending a number of remarkable students and faculty members to Mozambique to watch elections in one of Africa’s vibrant democracies, and I have the great good fortune (especially great in light the distinct absence of references to Mozambique in my professional work) to help coordinate the trip. Aside from […]

Read the rest of this entry »