Zeman’s Zemanites: Total Flop, Biggest Dwarves Of Them All?ČTK
Prague, March 29 (CTK) – President Milos Zeman is “the biggest of dwarves” since though he has defended his post for another five year-term, a party connected with his name and political ideas is a total flop, Petr Honzejk writes in daily Hospodarske noviny (HN) today.
Zeman, 73, likes mocking small parties, calling them “five-percent dwarves,” which might sound funny, but is not far-sighted. Using his own criteria, the Citizens Rights Party (SPO), which was founded by Zeman’s fans in 2009 and originally bore his name and which he openly supports, would be “0.08 percent of a dwarf.”
The SPO gained just 0.36 percent of the vote in the last October general election, thus failing to surpass the 1.5 percent limit for state contributions to political parties.
Honzejk points out that the difference between the Mayors and Independents (STAN), the smallest party in the Chamber of Deputies that narrowly crossed the 5-percent parliamentary threshold, and the SPO is like between Mount Everest and a little hill in the Bohemian-Moravian Highlands,
This must irritate Zeman. Though he has become head of state for the second time in a row and moreover, in a direct election, the party connected with his name and policy is not working well.
“We have a programme based on the ideas and legacy of Milos Zeman and we will stick to it,” SPO leadership member Jaroslav Masopust said proudly.
No one can be banned from repeating the past faults. However, one must ask an alarming question why Zeman’s ideas are such an election failure. This leads to a hypothesis that Zeman may be a “good entertainer and intelligent hater, which is sufficient for being elected president, but as far as positive ideas are concerned, voters are looking for them elsewhere,” Honzejk points out.
This is not surprising since Zeman’s intellectual production is limited to his threatening with refugees, dreaming about the construction of the Elbe-Oder-Danube channel and promoting the fashionable direct democracy as well as manifestations of his affection for China and Russia and his aversion to critical media outlets.
Simply speaking, this is a combination of megalomania and small-mindedness, which became apparent in the developments around Chinese “investments” (which are actually negligible in the Czech Republic despite Zeman’s proclamations) and Russian agents most recently.
Honzejk is likely to hint at the case of Zeman’s Chinese adviser who was recently arrested in China on suspicion of a financial crime as well as at Zeman ordering the intelligence service to check whether the Novichok nerve agent, used to attack a Russian former spy in Britain, was developed or stored in Czech territory.
Zeman alone likes to say that voters are not stupid and he is right. The voter support for the SPO gives a realistic picture of what his ideas are able to bring the Czech Republic, which is close to zero.
“Zeman feels like a giant and he is such in a certain sense – from time to time he is able to occupy the whole political horizon. But, in the light of the ‘successes’ of the ultra-dwarfish party bearing his name, we can see an explanation of this phenomenon: Zeman might be just an overgrown political dwarf,” Honzejk concludes in HN.