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Bucharest
September 29, 2020
EDITORIAL

Don’t rush. Get to work, never mind

Tudose. Mihai Tudose.

This was the way Liviu Dragnea introduced his new acquisition as substitute within the so-much coveted, priceless and, for the time being, inaccessible office of Prime Minister of his own Cabinet, which has entered round two of the Social Democratic governance gala.

Mr Dragnea’s witticism is obvious and directly linked to the public speculations regarding Mr Tudose’s more-or-less political identity. That of “man of the system” or “establishment’s man,” an identity about which a great fuss was and is being made, alongside the blemish of plagiarism and other strictly human shortcomings that, in my opinion, do not concern national well-being and do not, for the time being, infringe upon the special managerial capacity that Mr Tudose may prove to have more than his predecessor Mr Grindeanu did when it came to governance.

At a first glance, nothing in particular sets apart the new Cabinet, also known as “Dragnea 2,” from the “Dragnea 1” variant. From the standpoint of the way both the Prime Minister and the members of the Government were selected and promoted.

Why am I saying this? Because most of those interested in what is happening on today’s political scene are asking themselves, in an entirely legitimate way, albeit completely rhetorically, what would be the novelty and difference between the Grindeanu Government – freshly ousted and such a generator of convulsions and crises – and the new, old and colourless Tudose Government which induces, to me personally (and it seems not only to me), a state of non-being even before it started to exist.

It is as if we were watching a sort of parody staged by the left wing’s leader, for a reason that, in his vision, is based in essence on a motivation that is as real, serious and grave as possible. That according to which the Romanian state should be governed in an exceptional way by persons who are exceptionally well-trained and prepared, not just politically, but who, unfortunately, at the end of a number of months, at a moment known only by Liviu Dragnea, happen to become undesirable, completely unsuitable, or even outright hostile to this exceptional role.

Something that turned into a veritable powder keg or hot potato that the left wing’s leader will certainly detonate or throw into the hands or the courtyards of Romanians, albeit it is not known when or how.

Thus, just like almost six months ago, the same Mr Dragnea appeared in the press conference in which the new Prime Minister and the new PSD-ALDE Cabinet was presented. This time around, Mr Dragnea was accompanied by a different gentleman, who happens to be called Mihai Tudose. A gentleman who appeared to be extremely happy for the honour conferred, but also very serious and respectfully standing one step behind the forerunner leader of the PSD. Just like the same Mr Dragnea read out, in the presence of the silent and unperturbed new Prime Minister, the new list of ministers who were about to take over the 26 portfolios and seats at the Victoria Palace.

So far, we could notice nothing new in Mr Dragnea’s working scheme on governments.

The only somewhat notable difference between the “Dragnea 2” model of Government and the “Dragnea 1” model resides in the presence of two names of new ministers, alongside the old battery of outgoing but stand-alone ministers from the first variant. And, as a touch of the exotic to the field of offices and high-level and high-rank state appointments that Liviu Dragnea has given to his new Cabinet, we note that of “Deputy Premier for special problems.” A position that, in the direct translation and personal view of the creator of PSD Governments, voiced for the wide audience by Mihai Tudose, would be responsible for inter-ministerial coordination, but without a portfolio.

That’s because a part of the great evil that the Grindeanu Government exhibited found an explanation in the fact that the ex-Premier’s and his subordinate ministers’ lack of performance was partly caused also by the unfortunate inability for inter-ministerial communication.

But, behold!

This inability seems to be a kind of plague that sticks to Dragnea’s Governments like a leech. Since, less than a few hours after the investiture, deleterious and unfortunate distortions and fractures appeared in the communication between the new Prime Minister and his younger colleague from the Finances, who, just barely sworn in, gripped by an unexplainable, suicidal impulse, stated for the press that the pensions’ Pillar II will be dissolved!

“Good Lord, where are you taking this from?! How could he have said this, I’ll talk to him…,” Mihai Tudose reacted to the bombshell that his talkative and reckless newly-invested colleague detonated at the height of victory.

“Nonsense!” Liviu Dragnea’s reaction to the same minister’s statement.

All in all, we have entered a new political loop. We have a new Government. Consequently, we should be able to say that we have a new value or at least a new start from which all things should work without a glitch.

They should, however…

Like in any new political cycle, changes are not limited solely to appearances, namely to a different Prime Minister and a different Cabinet. They come in a package, as already announced, with a much more important revision that is much more impactful on the only point of general national interest that has to do with the essence of the real problem – the Governing Platform.

Well, since we have in fact reached the place that has started to obviously hurt us all ever-worse, it must be said that this fantastic Governing Platform, somewhat reaching the horizon line that exists only virtually, but that physically can never be reached, has become an extremely dangerous weapon in the hands and mind of the PSD leader.

And that’s not just because absolutely nothing good happened out of all that was said and promised even before the moment PSD-ALDE won the elections and former the Government, but especially because things have started to become increasingly complex, phantasmagorical and destructive on the plane of Romanian collective reality, from the standpoint of the eternal, and actually inexistent, great and holy Governing Platform. The one with which Liviu Dragnea managed to oust his own Government. Smacking us over the head, with each different round of “crisis” that he self-generates for reasons that, obviously, no longer have to do with political dialectics and demagoguery or with movements and abstract machinations of the same nature. But have to do with Liviu Dragnea’s personal interests. Interests that have clearly nothing to do with the well-being, stability, progress or interests of the Romanian state and of Romanians. Not to mention any tangency, no matter how tiny, with any real and positive Governing Platform that any of the Dragnea Governments in play from now on could implement at least in amount of 1 percent. Not to mention that 100 percent which has nevertheless remained another completely abstract figure from the platform of the same origin.

And this, translated into terms as simple and easy to understand by the general public as possible – Mr Dragnea’s private and strict interests have allowed several “minor” modifications to the Governing Platform. Here and there, in the essential points. Modifications that nevertheless bring with them a veritable tsunami of concern, criticism and protests on the part of economy, business and investment specialists and on the part of all those who see threatened the small and flimsy stability left for any person who works and lives in Romania.

Voices from areas of weight and impact in the economy, finances, business environment and investment environment have been sounding the alarm for months. Now, they have reached the point of literally screaming via the mass-media, warning that the Governing Platform, much-praised and excessively waived around by Liviu Dragnea as the supreme and ultimate solution for the Romanian nation’s well-being and flourishing of the Romanian nation, in fact represents one of the most toxic political applications that has ever existed and has ever been used in recent decades in Romania as a vehicle for political manoeuvre in the interest of a leader that is literally intoxicated with “unlimited power.”

In fact, President Klaus Iohannis’s speech at the swearing-in of the new Government fully emphasises this terrifying reality of the balance sheet of six months of Social Democratic governance, gloomily prophesising the near future and not leaving room to any doubt or interpretation: “A brief, very brief formula that would characterise these first six months would be: you’ve thrown the country in crisis because you didn’t know how to govern! Now, after some have tried a lot to rapidly put an end to this crisis, we find the coalition with a new Government and, surprisingly, with a new governing platform. New taxes are announced for Romanians, new fees; after I’ve just promulgated the law that raises salaries, counter-measures are already announced. The governing platform has been changed in sensitive points. In 6 months, we change from tax cuts to the reintroduction [of taxes], from salary hikes to the solidarity tax. Such behaviour is not framed within fiscal-budgetary predictability. If it’s going to be sustainable, I don’t know, but, esteemed members of the PSD, ALDE, UDMR, on behalf of Romanians, I ask you to put an end to this fiscal-budgetary flip-flopping. The solidarity tax – Mr Premier, show solidarity with Romanians and govern responsibly. I ask you to govern so as to remain within the 3 percent deficit margin. I ask you to govern so that Romanians would have the guarantee the Government protects and promotes the rule of law. I never want us to have another syncope the likes of OUG 13.

I’m asking you to do everything necessary to show our NATO and EU partners that we’re a serious people, we’re a serious country, despite all the political syncopes, and that we know to respect our commitments. Prove that you know how to respect the commitment regarding 2 percent for defence, prove that we’re capable to hold the deficit under control, to continue to register economic growth.”

However, nobody and nothing seems to stop or at least tackle the left-wing leader from his glorious, incendiary and devastating marathon toward the already obsessive desideratum and end goal – the Prime Minister’s office and, why not, in the end, the state’s Presidency.

Absurd and mindboggling or not, it seems this is and has always been the only and sole purpose of the takeover of power that Liviu Dragnea has pursued for years, first within PSD and, last but not least, within the Romanian state’s highest hierarchies.

And, to quote the Head of State once again, briefly, very briefly:

What is there left for the Tudose Government to do in the following weeks or months of governance that Mr Dragnea has granted?

It should not rush. It should get to work and… never mind.

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