A Rotten Apple Weighs In On Polish Politics In American Press

A Rotten Apple Weighs In On Polish Politics In American Press

Dodano:   /  Zmieniono: 
On Monday morning (November 30th) Washington Post Deputy Editorial Page Editor and Foreign Affairs editorialist (aka: glorified blogger) Jackson Diehl published a column under his byline.
This article entitled “Poland’s disturbing tilt to the right” was coming off the heels of a column the previous week when “the shill from the hill”- Maciej Bartkowski published an editorial at TheHill.com (in a DC-focused daily newspaper for the tapped-in American political class); “Congress: Keep an Eye on Kaczynski’s Poland”

In my recent Wprost column “PO’s Hacks and Shills Attempt a DC Offensive” I refuted bit-player Bartkowski’s situational “analysis” and prescriptions for how the US Congress should engage the new regime. (Bartkowski has taken to calling the new government a “democtatorship” on social media.) In the title I suggested this was an “offensive” because I could sense “Dr.” B. was not a “lone wolf” but part of a “cell” (in the parlance of the contemporary terror threat that EU/US leftist politicians are reticent to acknowledge exists these days). This was a coordinated placement-for-effect ahead of what was to methodically come next. Immediately upon reading the column the first time last week I knew who the Osama bin Laden of THIS Al Qaeda was. This fellow agent provocateur of perverted truth and peddler of propaganda (also congruently a fierce critic of Russia…except in 2010 from April 10th to June 20th) was already in motion coordinating the next strike against the new Polish government in the American press. To execute this plan of besmirching the PiS government (that has just won a unilateral mandate to rule without coalition partners for the first time in modern Polish history) Ms. Applebaum logically upped the stakes in going for a bigger attack.

On Monday morning it became clear that this “bad apple” had gone to her alma mater (where she still “contributes”), the Washington Post, to have her colleague, Jackson Diehl (Twitter: @JacksonDiehl) pen an editorial on the post-election “Polish situation” within the Applebaumian frame of: “the whole country is careening toward fascist hell post haste now that the evil right-wing has taken over.” It is important to keep in mind that the Washington Post is a rag so distrusted (only behind the New York Times) by any intellectually honest and thoughtful person that it required a bail-out from an eccentric tech billionaire to stay afloat (damn that Schumpeterian creative destruction crushing “honest” newspapers!). The only question I am still ruminating is to what degree “Bin Laden-Baum” built “the bomb” herself? Did she ghost write the piece for JD? Her fingerprints are certainly all over the components of the piece despite her many social media protestations that she has not written about Polish partisan politics in a decade. (This was amended to 5 years when I called her out for her post- Smolensk stumping for PO.) When you have media cronies like Diehl, Lucas, and Foy doing your “wet work” why bother getting your hands sullied in “Polish partisan politics?” This time though I think it was surely more akin to a sending out of her version of “the anarchist’s cookbook” to the witless Diehl who probably is not as on top of Polish political news on the ground as he was in the 80’s/90’s when he was stationed in Warsaw. Of course Diehl has to get his on-the-ground Polish news from somewhere…and it is probably not Gazeta Polska Codziennie or Superexpress. Given that he has such a long standing friendship with Poland’s most odious (ex-) power couple in Aniaczka and her husband Radoslaw (Radek to his friends and Twitter followers, of which I am neither as both he and the missus have blocked me on Twitter....one has to admire the willingness of such high minded products of the academy to debate their critics), and with them essentially the Polish rendition of the Clintons (elitist, arrogant, entitled, dishonest, politically motivated, and just progressive enough to remain cocooned in their leftist milieu), this was a good place for her to push the narrative that they all agree will help save swiftly right-ward shifting democracies in the developed world (the leftist cocoon is strong in its divorce from reality).

This opinion piece was so ridiculous and so loaded with assertions, lies, manipulations, fantasies, innuendos, “dog whistles” and truth-bending that the only way to break it down is with a top 10 list. So here goes:

The Top 10 Biggest Loads of Crap in the Applebaum Aided Hit Piece By Jackson Diehl in the Washington Post:

1) PiS has "installed a new chief of the secret security services who was previously convicted of abuse of power for prosecuting political opponents.” This is a classic example of the media omitting the other side of the story. The other side is surely relevant given that this was WIDELY acknowledged to have been a politically motivated prosecution and sentencing. Mariusz Kaminski, who was head of the Central Anticorruption Bureau, discovered widespread examples of corruption (across all parties) and the judiciary (which has received much attention as of late for being an organ of the previous government and was further stacked by them on their way out of power) rather than prosecute the alleged guilty parties instead went after Mr. Kaminski. He was then acquitted twice before being sentenced anyway for giving a coordinated bribe (he was head of the Central Anticorruption Bureau), so this act they held him criminally liable for was essentially a sting operation, and while on appeal the case was dismissed by the new government by way of a pardon from President Duda. One would think some of these other details and versions beyond the PO formal line would be relevant to disclose to a consumer of news…unless there is an agenda to be pushed.

2) PiS has "replaced five members of the Constitutional Court (Constitutional Tribunal- TK) in order to avoid challenges to that first appointment.” Yet again this is an act of willful omission. There is no mention of the last government making appointments of their people before terms were up in order to stack the bench before the incoming government assumes power and gets to replace the judges who was set to have their 9 year term conclude. At the time of the election the 15 judges comprising the tribunal broke down as 14 appointed by PO and 1 from PSL (PO’s former junior coalition partner and essentially the Marxist farmer party). This was done to attempt to insure the highly compromised judiciary would remain NOT independent. Moreover it was highly unlikely the tribunal would have found the act of replacing these judges as unconstitutional. This is akin to Obama, as he is exiting the Oval Office in December 2016, announcing and installing his Supreme Court replacements for the still-sitting Justices that he wants replaced with those with whom he shares (activist) judicial ideology before Judges (such as Thomas or Scalia) retired (their terms are up at their discretion, or death). And then having the NEW Supreme Court, loaded with his fraudulently appointed judges, rule on the legality and constutionality of the President’s brazenly illegal action. This is what is playing out in Poland these last couple of months and coming to a head right now. Also note that this was the same Constitutional Tribunal that rubber stamped as constitutional (as one of their last rulings before the PiS government took over) PO’s looting of pensioner’s assets when they nationalized the OFE privately managed government bond holding portion of the pension system (in order to fund expanded purchase of influence ahead of the recent elections- Presidential and Parliamentary, both of which they lost precisely due to actions like this one).

3) PiS has "named as defense minister an outspoken anti-Semite." This is one of the most shameful allegations I have ever seen in a “reputable” newspaper. Even tabloids would be careful to throw around exclamations like this! In WaPo parlance this whopper of a lie earns 5 Pinocchios. Antoni Macierewicz is a lot of things- hawkish on Russia is one of them and leery of EU security policy is another....but an anti-Semite? In terms of foreign policy views he will bring to the Defense Ministry, there will be no stronger ally in Europe for Israel than Poland in large part to views Macierewicz holds as a defender of Israel’s right to exist and no affinity for the Palestinian cause as long as it’s tools to legitimize itself are savage levels of violence directed at civilians. How does that mesh with his supposed rabid anti-Semitism? This is such a ridiculously brazen propagandist attempt at character assassination that if I were him I would announce a libel suit to draw attention to how biased this reportage is! I know Mr. Macierewicz and I know many Jews who know Mr. Macierewicz, and I know Jews in the opposition party who know Mr. Macierewicz, and no one (who is independent and honest) who has ever known this highly intelligent Polish patriot can provide any real evidence that he has ever come close to demonstrating anti-Semitism. The entire founding of this allegation stems from a statement he made in 2002 on Radio Maryja. Radio Maryja is the Catholic radio that is considered extremist by some on the far left. But extremist Catholics aggressively pray for your soul and the hate they supposedly spread, if you believe the anti-Church far left, is not at all violent in nature (unlike some faiths whose purveyors of hate transform themselves into human bombs and, of course, the left makes apologies for these groups). In the interview Macierewicz was asked about the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. He tried to evenhandedly discuss its genesis and his words and sentiments have since been taken out of context. This is hardly a damning proof of vitriolic anti-Semitism. (Mr. Minister- please litigate this as you successfully litigated in the past a pernicious defamation against your character by the WaPo’s morally bankrupt Polish cousin; Gazeta Wyborcza.)

4) "The new Polish culture minister tried to order a state-funded theater not to stage a play by Nobel Prize-winning author Elfriede Jelinek, claiming it was pornographic. When a television reporter questioned whether his edict was legal, the minister promised a purge of the reporter’s network as well as other state-supported news media." The operative words here are “state-funded” and “state-supported.” The new government has just received an unprecedented mandate of unilateral rule from the citizenry. If the new caretakers of the Polish state do not believe the citizens want to fund this pornographic (openly billed as live sexual activity with scenes enacted by experienced Czech porn actors on stage) drivel then this is within their mandate and what the people overwhelmingly voted for (which was clearly a “values” centered political party). This is hardly an assault on free expression as no one is advocating making such performances illegal. But if the government is funding your operations as a theater than you are liable to adhere to the standards set by your patron- or go out and raise the capital elsewhere. I imagine that in the free and private marketplace, presenting this utter and total schlock, they would not last long. Proving once again, the protests are really all about the extraction of government money. To Diehl’s point on the reporter who “questioned” whether Cultural Minister Glinski’s “edict was legal,” I wonder if the author actually watched the clip of the interview broadcast on TVP (state-supported public television station) by “reporter” Karolina Lewicka (fittingly, with a surname ironically close to the word "left" in Polish- lewica). In a 16 minute interview she spoke about half the time in a hostile and shrill tone and cut off the interview subject repeatedly to yell at him. She was more concerned with expressing herself and browbeating the Minister than conducting an interview. Her suspension was well too light a sentence in my view and she should have been summarily dismissed. That was not journalism in any sense of the vocation. That was a debate which was not what the minister was invited there to participate in. I expect many of her superiors and hopefully her magisterial self to be terminated very soon anyway, and deservedly so, given the culture of leftist propaganda (and PO protectionism) they have been feeding the citizens at taxpayer expense for the last 8 years. The amount of time they dedicated to episodes like this theater kerfuffle are many orders of magnitude higher than the time dedicated (usually none at all) to covering dozens of PO scandals. Scandals such as: a rigged election and vote counting in Gdynia last year, the protests that ensued and the suggestion that questioning electoral processes was treasonous by the President and Mayor of Warsaw (you would think journalists would be up in arms on such a stifling of free speech but they were not even a little bit given their overtly biased sympathies), the “tapes scandal” where many high ranking officials of the last PO government were caught on hidden tape flagrantly breaking the law (including central bank chief Marek Belka caught coordinating monetary policy with his friends in PO to influence the coming elections), Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski spending taxpayer money on himself and friends wantonly, and many more (literally scandals by the dozen). So some “cleaning house” of the corrupt taxpayer funded media complex is certainly in order but don’t expect to hear this from Anne Applebaum or pseudonymous friend Jackson Diehl.

5) "The new government spokeswoman meanwhile said she thought it would be a good idea to put former Prime Minister Donald Tusk — the current president of the European Council, the E.U.’s executive body — on trial." I for one think this is a damn fine idea. There are many allegations that would have been investigated had the judiciary not been the lapdog of Mr. Tusk’s party (Tusk founded and led PO from the beginning). We can start with the Amber Gold scandal. Amber Gold was a massive pyramid scheme that defrauded many people and in which Tusk’s son was directly involved but never prosecuted for his involvement. The head of the NBP (the central bank- the National Bank of Poland) Marek Belka was also caught on tape discussing this criminal activity and having warned Tusk about it but did not take further measures to alert and warn the public which likely led to materially more losses from “investing” in this Ponzi scheme borne by innocent Poles who got swindled. (Belka has been proven time and again to have been criminally derelict of his NBP duty in order to “run interference” for his political allies in PO- no more so than in the tapes scandal- "Aferatosmowa"- where he conspired to keep monetary policy loose ahead of the election). Let’s shake the tree and see how many other skeletons Tusk, the Tri-City mobster, has lurking in his closet…a closet well populated by taxpayer-purchased fine suits (his allowances to himself of taxpayer monies, like most of his crony compatriots in PO, have always been nothing short of “altruistic”). Tusk walks, talks, smells, and acts like a criminal and as such he should indeed be investigated and tried for his many alleged larcenies, petty and grand. Let us see if, in an independently managed trial, he would not end up in the clink....I bet he would.

6) "Szydlo has reneged on an E.U. plan under which 4,500 (refugees) would be sent to Poland." The migrant crisis is one of the main reasons PiS won with such an overwhelming mandate. Poles do not want to import and inject foreign invaders into Polish society and in theory there is still a Polish nation that has the right to its own sovereign decision making capacity….whether Brussels likes this or not. How novel of an idea it is that a democratically elected leader is actually LISTENING to her citizens and representing their interests and their clearly expressed desires in policymaking. This is of course a foreign concept to DC and Brussels elites like Deputy Editor Diehl and the “bad apple” herself. (Recall: every EU referendum that does not assert higher validation to the theme of "more Europe" and the commitment to this project's execution is summarily ignored. These “real” democrats we see before us are democratically elected fascists. Nothing more, nothing less.)

7) "Law and Justice’s real leader, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, rivals Donald Trump in his use of lies to stoke public fear of Muslims. He’s claimed that immigrants have imposed sharia in Sweden..." Another DC/Brussels elite talking point divorced from the reality on the ground and a prime reason why these elites are losing their legitimacy in the eyes of the common man on the ground all over Europe. I am not sure if the co-authors (JD/AA) have ever been to Malmo, Sweden. Or to the Molenbeek neighborhood in Brussels. Or to the many Parisian suburbs where setting cars on fire occurs regularly and police rarely investigate the heavy criminal activity for fear of physical retribution from the criminal class of home grown Islamists (and then the tragedy of a few weeks ago occurs, which should surprise roughly no one). Or the English city of Rotherham where 1400 children were raped as authorities turned a blind eye for a decade (!). It seems Sharia in many of these places; which are dens of bigamy, honor killing, forced marriage, genital mutilation, spousal abuse, etc; is well more adhered to than local common law. Poland has stated at the ballot box: “Thank you, no!” for this form of “diversity” and “multi-kulti.” And Law & Justice’s “real” leaders have the common sense to agree with the masses on the ground. Unlike those cocooned in the Ivory Tower.

8) “Anti-Semites . . . are under the belief that they have support from this new government for such actions,” Poland’s Chief Rabbi, Michael Schudich, told the Jerusalem Post." This is another doozy of an allegation (made in reference to the burning in effigy of a Hasidic figure in Wroclaw- an event that has not proven conclusive of anything systemic and may have even been a provocation) showing once again that if you want to attack the right from the left, then yelling “Racist!” is your greatest (and most intellectually lazy and dishonest) tool to do so. It is amazing journalism when the “journalist” does not offer up an on-the-record comment to counter such an allegation. As long as I have been going to Poland, albeit I was not alive in the 1960’s or, obviously, the 1940’s, I have yet to see any government or any of its agencies (local, provincial, or federal) in Poland sanction, sponsor, or support anti-Semitism. I have always gotten the sense from Michael Schudrich’s (originally from New York City and a transplant to Poland) public commentary and associations, that he had maintained very close relations with the last government and their press platforms of choice. I wonder how unbiased an observer HE is in this political debate….and I wonder how close a connection he has to Ms. Applebaum. Food for thought. If I were PiS I would immediately halt state funding to any of this Rabbi’s state sponsored cultural activities. Spreading pernicious falsehoods about the democratically elected government, especially of this scale, is a big deal and has big consequences. It does damage to the Polish state and as such the state is under no obligation to patronize the activity of their political detractors.

9) "Kaczynski, like Hungary’s Viktor Orban, is the product of an ugly pre-World War II populism, frozen and preserved through the communist era, that mixes xenophobia, anti-Semitism, right-wing Catholicism and autocratic impulses." It didn't take long to throw in the usual "dog-whistles" with all sorts of negative connotations: populism, xenophobia, right wing, Catholic, autocratic....I guess "nationalistic" is just assumed at this point and folded in with populist, xenophobic, and autocratic. The opposition leftists (PO) are in shock these days that they lost a referendum on their governance AND philosophy. The older generation within PiS contains the hardline anti-communists from yesteryear that were not part of the elite. These are the devout Roman Catholics, Poland’s center of societal strength and “spine” for centuries of oppressive history, that were the core of the Pope John Paul II anti-communist legion. This is as opposed to many of the leftist elites who were “flexible” in the scale of their opposition and were often card carrying communists because they wanted the exit visas, the access to Western culture/education (and as a result speak English more consistently), or were the remaining class tenuously connected to a legacy aristocracy and replete with political connections. These are now the loudest voices openly hostile to the Church. Whether you like the politics of the Polish Church or not (there is much to disagree with in its provinciality, over the top social conservative opposition to in vitro fertilization and hostility to free market competition and free expression) it has consistently and undeniably been the repository of Polish cultural values and the moral center of the nation for many centuries. The left/PO worships foremost at the altars of government, technocracy, bureaucracy, and PO utterly lacks humility in their view that they are the academic and culturally enlightened (elitist to its core) who are meant to rule (much like the Ivy League faculty lounge that Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren so perfectly embodies). The institutions and complexes they have centered their faith in and have supplanted the church with are the academy, the NGO sphere, and the media- all funded more and more out of the expanded government of their designs. They are committed to the European project and are simpatico with Brussels and Germany. European interests are Polish interests in their minds. PiS believes in the independence of the Polish state and that the nation is strongest when its cultural values and sovereign decision making capacity are upheld. This is in similarity to Viktor Orban, who generally is not someone I believe has requisite respect for individual liberties, but in firmly acting in his citizens best and widely desired interests by standing up to Brussels mandates he is doing right in his role as national leader of Hungary. Acting in the best interests of Poland/Hungary is hardly an example of autocracy as the WaPo would have you believe. And the citation of anti-Semitism (again) is a rhetorical bomb that is lobbed when arguments cannot be won on merit (and if I were the PiS government I would write an open letter to Diehl and the Washington Post Editorial Board attacking this libel and defending the nation against such a deleterious and dishonest charge signed by PiS leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski, President Andrzej Duda, Prime Minister Beata Szydlo, and Foreign Minister Witold Waszczykowski).

10) The piece de resistance of Diehl/Applebaum’s ridiculous twaddle, almost a little comic relief if you will, is the reference to former Polish Prime Minister and current President of the European Council Donald Tusk as: "Poland’s best known and most respected active statesman...." Tusk is so respected in global affairs that he does not get invited to summits on Ukrainian security despite his position as the head of the EC and with Poland the principle EU Ukrainian border state (that also happens to be the 6th biggest nation/economy in Europe, ex-Russia). Now THAT is serious respect for an active statesman! And if you need a refresher on Donald Tusk see point #5 above. The rationale behind a statement like this, one so divorced from reality (again), can only be a strong internal bias and obliviousness to visible facts or an incentive to push an agenda. Calling Tusk a respected statesman is almost as ludicrous as referring to disgraced former Foreign Minister Radolsaw Sikorski as one as well despite his crass and buffoonish lack of diplomacy (recall: he was caught unaware of being taped and on microphone in Kiev exiting a mediation between the EU and the Russian backed Ukrainian President Yanukovich during the Maidan protests and he stated to a protest leader that if they did not agree to the deal offered “You’ll all be dead”. How diplomatic. Yet Diehl and Sikorski-spouse Applebaum would suggest Sikorski is a superlative diplomat and statesman. He was even in the running to be elevated from Polish Foreign Minister to the EU equivalent, officially titled: “High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.” I would argue this title perfectly represents what the EU is; a whole lot of words to distract from a woeful lack of policy. Given the hapless condition of EU “security” I would suggest any faith in this massively scaled government super-state is sorely misplaced. In the EU that is perceived by JD and AA, Donald Tusk is a statesman. Enough said.

So the Washington, D.C. focused propaganda terror cell’s offensive started with some kiddie table agitprop blog post by a barely-beyond-grad school “Dr.” that nobody had ever heard of and was placed in a wonky DC political paper. Then the cell moved on to the editorial page of Anne Applebaum’s home town paper (a platform with which she currently directly affiliates) tapping into those deep political media crony connections to deliver a detailed play by play of the Polish action (as seen from Ms. Applebaum’s biased self-interested eyes). But alas, it was still only an opinion piece. So where to stage the next attack? The only American paper of record that more represents the apotheosis of bullshit than the “WaPo” is the New York Times (also hurtling toward bankruptcy albeit at a slower pace...as they still do good restaurant reviews). So it was not surprising that two days later (December 2nd) the grey lady (she has always had that pallor- it’s accentuated by the lies she tells) coughed, sputtered, and printed this gem: “New Polish Government Sparks Constitutional Crisis” which now took Mr. Diehl’s “snow job” of an analysis as un-indictable news fit to be print. The following day “The Economist", whose Central and Eastern European coverage is overseen by CEE correspondent Edward Lucas, a close personal friend of the crony couple (Applebaum/Sikorski), began its part of the “offensive.” And as this piece was going to press, Fareed Zakaria aired a 3 minute segment on his Sunday show citing a comparison between what is happening now in Poland and a coup d’etat. It would be the first coup in my memory that was executed by the party who won an unprecedentedly large scale unilateral mandate to govern by popular election. But with Fareed any disbelief needs to be suspended as wonders never cease (though I ceased wondering who was feeding him Polish footage when I saw a Gazeta Wyborcza label on screen as they rolled tape of the arsonist in Wroclaw burning the effigy of a Jew). Zakaria's talking points were exact duplicates of the one’s in Diehl’s column and laden with the same manipulations, innuendos, half-truths, untruths, and most dramatically the same numerous meaningful omissions of so many relevant facts in all of the examples that were "reported" on. Did I mention that Zakaria is also a columnist for the Washington Post? Stay tuned….the onslaught of propaganda has just begun and it promises to be a road paved with lies.