Банкеръ Daily


Rulers Desperately Clinging to Power

The persistence with which the ruling coalition has fixated onto power not only infuriates protesters but also poses a difficult mystery to political analysis. Such behavior is unreasonable, short-sighted, in a sense even pushing for political self-destruction. Even more bizarrely, the EPP (or at least the leadership of its fraction in the European Parliament) joined the inexplicable stubbornness to be in power at all costs. If our morons can be assumed they do not know and cannot understand why this is not done, European politicians are aware of the rules of the big game.

When (at least) two-thirds of the citizens categorically demand the resignation of the government and new elections, the situation is clear and irreversible. The dialogue between the supreme sovereign and these rulers has been permanently interrupted and there is no power that can restore it. We have witnessed such situations many times - both in our country and around the world. The outcome is one and quite simple –

new public contract, with new conditions

and new requirements for political representatives, following new elections meeting the standards of democracy.

The picture we've seen over the past two months remarkably resembles the doomed attempts of a crayfish to climb up against the rapids of a mountain stream - no matter how much his claws cling to the stones the stormy water takes him away eventually. Thus the continuing blind stubbornness of our rulers will end - sooner or later. But two questions are often asked - why and for how long?

The answer to the first question seems relatively straightforward and has been summed up by many as stalling tactics. What the government expects that time will give them is more curios. Here, several visible motives are outlined, although there are differences in their arrangement. First, attempts to negotiate any relatively secure guarantees for personal physical and material integrity of the ruling party (those of the lower levels are doomed to serve as scapegoats). Secondly, the allocation of as much public resources as possible to those close to them for personal gain and at least a partial realization of commitments that cannot simply be cancelled. Third, sweeping tracks under the rug by destroying information and giving visible legality to a number of ground-breaking abuses. Finally, creating the worst possible conditions for the future caretaker government hoping that the blame for the results of the outrageous management will be placed on the caretaker government, the President and the political factors supporting the demands of the civil protests.

Some logic can be found in these motives, but the problem is that it is completely inadequate to the situation and, above all, hopelessly late.

In addition to the above,

a popular explanation of the authorities’ head-strong actions

is their desire that it will be they who will organize the elections at any cost. The main tools and schemes for putting pressure on vulnerable groups of voters and falsifying election results have already been very clear. The government, which  means mainly GERB (because the Patriots and "Volya" have no practical chances to enter the next parliament), are aware that they have lost Sofia and the big cities and intend to focus their efforts in medium and small settlements where the brutal crushing of the population would still give some result. If we add about 300,000 votes 'won' by counterfeiting, this – according to the predictions of the electoral technologists of power – would give a chance for a decent performance and even a victory (if things do not go well with opponents).

There is, however, an indecisive contradiction. Staying in power until March (which would provide the advantage of controlling the electoral process) goes hand in hand with consuming all the negatives "guaranteed" of any government in the face of a deepening crisis. It goes about the government and the parliamentary majority which are totally delegitimized and cannot rely on understanding and sympathy. The most logical thing is that the criticism towards the government increases, which in turn is likely to lead to higher political and electoral activity rather than apathy and retreat. So even with the maximum activation of the electoral scamming of the government,

the negatives of remaining in power

outweigh the benefits of retaining the control over it.

There are also grounds for the claims that Borisov and his inner circles do not see the "distant" horizon, but fight for survival day to day. A number of economists and financiers note that government spending estimates are capped at the maximum until mid-November. Shock spending will prove to be a big problem for those in power if they persist beyond that horizon. So we come to the question of how long can clinging to power last under the current conditions?

Opinions are divided here. The theoretical possibility that Borisov has decided at all costs to complete a full term once for all can be added to the above motives for persistence, although this would be a pyrrhic victory and will most likely call into question the chances of elementary personal survival (not to mention the inevitable collapse of GERB). Other observers note that

fear is the main driving force

of the behaviour of the managing authorities and this is an emotion whose impact is difficult to predict accurately, especially if several types of fear are intertwined. Moreover, regardless of the resources at its disposal, the power does not fully control the development of events, something more - control drops, and the sphere of the environment shrinks. If we resort to historical analogies, the behavior of the rulers increasingly resembles the desperate and pointless resistance of the garrisons of some German fortress cities at the end of The Second World War. The casualties are meaningless, because the outcome of the war is already preordained. Likewise, the persistence of holding power to the last minute only increases the political cost to rulers and the socio-economic cost to society. It is all the more important to note that in a clientele-like party like GERB, there is not even a drop of conceptual self-sacrifice, everything is a matter of calculating economic benefits and losses. In doing so, the benefits and losses of remaining power are not evenly distributed between the top and lower clientele levels. Based on this line of reasoning

two projections may be drawn up.

The first thing that seems more likely is that the stubbornness of the government will end by mid-November, leaving open the question of what the reason for "I claim to be defeated" will be. The second thing which cannot be excluded is the agony to be continued until the end, or at least for as long as possible (in view of the situation with the non-dissolution of parliament in the last months before the previous elections).

In both scenarios, the end for the political status quo will be about the same. The only difference is the price that Bulgarian society will have to pay.

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