by gradinski chai
Tue Aug 16th, 2005 at 09:38:58 AM EST
Promoted by Colman
It looks like, maybe, Bulgaria will get a government in the next few days. This would not be really newsworthy if it were not for the fact that elections took place on 25 June. What has emerged over the past few weeks has been an tortured process of assembling a parliamentary majority, but is something else is going on as well?
Since my earlier frustrations led me to write about some of the details (i.e. I partially hijacked one of DoDo's earlier posts...again my apologies, DoDo), I'll just present a brief (LOL) summary:
June's elections left us with this configuration (as you read down, the parties become more right).
BSP 83 (socialists + one Attacka who joined)
MRF 34 (largely a Turkish supported party)
NDSV 53 (former Tsar Simeon II's created party)
BNC 13 (three small center right parties)
ODC 20 (original center right opposition coalition)
DSB 17 (further right)
Attacka 18 (hard right)
Inde 02 (two deputies were kicked out of Attacka)
This meant that an easy center left coalition could have been quickly formed between the BSP, MRF, and NDSV. Unfortunately for some unexplained reasons Simeon's party pulled out of negotiations. On the first attempt, the socialists and MRF tried to create a government with the support of some defectors from the hard right Attacka (go figure!). It failed by one vote.
Simeon's party is now given the mandate to form a government, but since they have stopped the socialists earlier, the negotiations don't go well. Simeon says that they need to have the socialists, but he's also talking to the right. They can't form a center right government unless they join with the hard right, which he doesn't want to do. They fail and return the mandate long after it's clear that they can't form a government on THEIR mandate. So now we have what amounts to the third mandate...
And lo and behold...the BSP, MRF, and NDSV agree to form a government. Meanwhile the right parties argue that the constitution prohibits the BSP's Stanishev from being nominated for PM again. The cabinet post distribution is: socialists (8), Simeon's party (5), and the MRF (3).
On Saturday, President Purvanov criticized all of the parties for losing time in Bulgaria's EU accession process. He has also criticized the parties for undermining public support for parliamentary democracy. This is very true, but many think he's said too little, too late.
To compound public dissatisfaction, central Bulgaria has experienced severe flooding. The state administration and Simeon's caretaker cabinet were caught unprepared. Coordination problems, poor maintenance of canals, dams, and drainage systems aggravated the problem.
After seeing all of this and also reading the great diaries on the upcoming German elections, I'm left with wondering what is going on? Not only in Europe... We appear to be losing an ability to think about the society and its prosperity and stability. Instead, political forces seem to be so wrapped up in their own narrow selfish views that they cannot step above this. Am I naieve? Am I miguided to think that more of this used to exist?