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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Tymoshenko, the Mother Of All Miners 2

Last October, she said this: “The crisis is knocking, but we don’t have to open the door.” Welcome to another don’t-worry-be-happy fairy tale from the same old fairy:


Voiceover: The world financial crisis has hit Ukraine’s coal mining industry hard. Coal demand has fallen severalfold. Will the government be able to save the industry from meltdown?

PM Yulia Tymoshenko: To combat the world crisis, we are carrying out a special program in the coal mining industry. First, we’ve created a state reserve of energy-use coal at power stations. This means that every ton of coal will be paid for. Second, we’ve allocated 4 billion hryvnias from the stabilization fund for the coal mining industry. This means that the industry will have investments and the coal miners will have pay. All miners will receive pay on a timely and complete basis. Should officials do something wrong, call the government using the number you see on the screen. Don’t worry. The crisis will be overcome. Ukraine is strong.

Strong enough to elect you president once you saddle it with every kind of I[nvesting] M[oney] in F[riends] debt possible? Or maybe you want to be elected in Parliament, by partnering with the Party of Regions and rewriting the Constitution?

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elmer said...

I see the vitriole and sarcasm dripping all over the place.

Tymoshenko has decided to step up and try to get government to help the miners - good.

Noone else seems to be doing it, even if they are capable of doing it (note- Party of Regions owns most of the mines).

She is using a TV ad touting her wonderful social program, in what is unmistakably a campaign-style ad - bad.

But, unfortunately, she's not the only one who uses "social program ads" in Ukraine. In Ukraine, unfortunately, there are no rules in the political game, and so it's the Unlimited Fight Club - use government money to pay for a thinly-disguised, or not really disguised campaign ad. Campaign 100% of the time.

And Tymoshenko is, by far, the champion of self-promotion.

Administrative resources. They all do it.

It's disgusting.

To be fair, Taras, I don't think the vitriole and sarcasm ought to be limited to just Tymoshenko and her shameless self-promotion.

Solution? Well, in this case, instead of the campaign-style ad with the dramatically urgent background music, a public service announcement would probably do the trick of informing what's available to the miners, and what the government is doing.

Or maybe a press release.

Anything but this "look at me, look at me, I'm wonderful, vote for me" ad.

Maybe if people in Ukrainian government realized that they are servants of the people, and not benefactors (меценати) or beneficent despots, this type of ad would change.

Taras said...

Of course, everybody’s doing it. It’s an election year.

That said, Tymoshenko’s patronage of coal miners needs a hard look. A quick glance at her photo with Zvyahilsky should give pause to anyone willing to buy her “mother of all miners” image.

On a more scholarly coal mining note, her warm embrace of Margaret Thatcher should be food for thought, too.

During perestroika, many in the USSR admired Margaret Thatcher as a person and Cold War ice breaker, regardless of her domestic policies in the UK.

elmer said...

Yeah, I remember the Zviahilsky photo, and the Thatcher article and photo.

Zviahilsky, of course, is the little fat pig who played the "we don't know who owns the mine" when one of the mines that he owned (no, wait, he leased it, now wait, noone knows who owned it) blew up due to safety violations.

It is blatantly obvious that in Ukraine, the government simply consists of a circle of "political elite" who will do everything to stay in government. Each group in the circle has its own set of oligarch thugs, who are keeping the country down.

Poland had over $200 billion of foreign investment.

Ukraine had only $35 billion over a comparable period.

I keep asking myself the same question:

Why can't the people organize a quiet campaign, putting forth a non-oligarch presidential candidate, and putting forth 450 non-oligarch candidates for Parliament, get rid of the whole lot, and make the reforms that are necessary in the Constitution and in the judiciary?

And eliminate parliamentary immunity, and the party list system?

Tymoshenko's challenge was "let's create the best government in the world."

Well, that's not happened.

Yushchenko said "let's separate business and government."

Well, that's not happened.

Yushchenko said "corruption is killing the country."

Well, that has indeed happened.

The Party of Regions, which owns the businesses and coal mines in silly Donbass, has laid everyone off - but, incredibly, are blaming the government. Those oligarchs just stuffed money into their pockets, did nothing for the people, bought jets and yachts - and they are blaming the government.

Pinchuk just pays for obscenely bad art and a London mansion with his stolen money - stolen from Ukraine.

Kolomoysky stole money - still does - and lives in Switzerland.

Firtash tried to portray himself as a "savior of Ukraine" with his rotten RosUkrEnergo corruption.

That's why by "non-oligarch," I mean either an oligarch, or someone funded or controlled by an oligarch.

If Ukrainians got together and simply organized candidates and a vote, they could sweep the whole lot out of office, for a non-corrupt healthy government - and healthy country.

Then maybe Ukrainians wouldn't have to waste government money on shameless Tymoshenko self-promotion ads.

Taras said...

How dare you say that? They didn't steal anything!

Having launched their garage start-ups in Kuchma Valley, they earned every dollar that came their way.