One week more and Romanians will know which political forces will lead the country for the next four years. According to the polls, it seems likely that the Social Liberal Union (USL) will have the majority in Parliament and after 8 December, so President Traian Basescu will again have the difficult task nominating a PM from his bitter political opponents, the USL.
What is strange, in my opinion, is the attitude of the two main political forces, the USL and the Right Romania Alliance (ARD,) which seem to have been fallen under the spell of this battle of egos between Basescu and PM Ponta. As a Romanian citizen, the reaction of the USL and ARD is more worrying than two “palaces’. Why am I worried? I assume that these powerful party unions have professional consultants, who, from appearances, must also be more concerned with negative campaigning and bringing down their opponents than furthering the country’s interests or developing positive policies.
Maybe my concern doesn’t have any cornerstone and the consultants do their jobs honestly, giving good advice, but our politicians are too arrogant to listen to it, or too unprofessional to put it into practice. Anyway, either of these potential causes can have destructive effects. Why? If the main political forces run solely negative campaigns, we, the Romanian electorate can understand that the two alliances:
Don’t have a clear, strong and coherent vision for the future of Romania.
Don’t have solutions to solve Romania’s difficult situation from the financial, economic, social and political perspectives.
Don’t have professionals who can put in practice real measures to develop Romania.
Believe that the only way to gain the elections means to make media show, circus and, eventually to roar louder than the opposing candidate.
Think that this people is a nation of idiots and/or naives, who can be easily manipulated with jokes, gratuitous ironies, everlasting telenovela like stories.
If the two alliances do not agree with this type of electoral campaign, but go along with it, then they prove they are too weak, too scared, or both, to do anything about it and/or are being manipulated by outside forces. Because I’m not a fan of conspiracy theories, I think that the two political alliances are content with this type of campaigning, and this is a frustrating feeling for any Romanian who still believes in the power of people, plurality through the vote.
If intelligent campaign strategies are what I saw the last month, then a total change of the Romanian political class is necessary, new parties, new faces and new programs.
This idea is shared by many people here and a few appreciate that this process is ongoing. I’m not so optimistic because if we carefully look at the new political forces, the situation doesn’t look like improving. What are the real new offers? One is the Dan Diaconescu’s People Party and another is Mihai Ungureanu’s Civic Force. I’m not pretending I’m a political analyst, I’m only a normal citizen, but, in my opinion the new offers are not feasible yet.
The People Party is a TV channel party, led by a very controversial public figure. The Diaconescu’s party is a menagerie of people, ideas, twisted scenarios, dubious characters and fugitive members from other parties. The so called ideas promoted by Mr.Diaconescu don’t have any financial, economic, legal, social or even logical bases; a string of unrealistic and gargantuan promises. What seems to be very dangerous in this so called party is Mr Diaconescu’s apparently huge manipulative force. I wonder if this “party,” will survive per se or be included in one of the two main political groups after elections.
The Civic Force is a party built in a rush on the move run and it looks like it was created speedily. It is only one impression but the rush in which it was announced and it was integrated in ARD can lead us to question: why now? Why after the referendum results? Why in the ARD? And why Mr.Ungureanu as its leader? This new political force has demonstrated nothing so far, though admittedly they haven’t had much chance yet; the party’s vision and manifesto, the members and their professional experience of politics, all remain unclear.
A problem for this new political force could be the leader. Mihai Ungureanu is a new politician, well educated, but he has in current public opinion at least two problems. One is the weak performance of his government (dumped from power after just a few months in office); another is his affiliation to the Secret Services. Both weaknesses are complimented by his open support for the President and, above all the arrogant attitude which he has sometimes shown. But, by contrast to the People Party, the Civic Force, if it survives, could become an important and credible player after 2016 if it:
Declares clear affiliation to one main political stream, setting a program for governing based on this open affiliation,
Has a coherent vision and a professional strategy,
Has a well rooted program: financial, economic, social, educational,
Has a young professional team, people with good results in specific domains and education in politics. They should be the future professional politicians, not only people with good results in fields unrelated to politics.
And, above all, if Mr.Ungureanu changes his attitude and becomes the well educated, balanced, human being who I saw years ago on that incomparably high standard cultural and educational TV show led by the late Iosif Sava. The young history teacher from the Iasi University I saw then could have been a true and credible new leader.
Until the new political class is able to stand on its own, the Romanians will choose from the old guard, whatever the political alliance. The new comers to Romanian politics should remember an old expression “The old guard dies but it doesn’t capitulate’, so, it is the time to act accordingly, carefully, professional and, above all with honesty.
By Mariana Ganea, Guest Writer
(photo source: Romania-Insider.com)