The upcoming 2015 presidential and parliamentary elections will be decisive in what direction we want to take Poland. The stakes are clearly high, more so than in any other previous election. This will not be merely a national decision of who will lead Poland but rather a nationwide consensus that will determine whether or not we are willing to continue living under the system created by Donald Tusk and Bronisław Komorowski; a system, in which the ties between our society, between the citizens and the government hardly resembles a true democracy but rather an act of mass social engineering. This propaganda, with manipulation undeniably at its core, is designed to serve the interests of those few at the top. It serves the selfish interests of all those participating in the grand heist that is stripping away our resources and national assets in every essential sector of our economy, from the industrial sector to the health sector and everything in between under the guise of “honest and legitimate business.” The public institutions that we rely on for Poland’s development are being driven to the brink of insolvency and the national resources needed to keep them functioning, including EU funds, are siphoned off into the corrupt hands of those who are turning our common goods into their own private treasury. This applies well beyond our borders. In international politics, Poland has become more and more passive and unconditionally compliant with more influential outside political forces. Poland bends to the will of those who impose climate change regulations, putting our country at a disadvantage, while we are forced to watch the wealthiest of the EU member states profit at our cost. And what of the Polish shipyards, whose abandonment ensured a stable and productive future for German shipyards and workers. The Polish government’s lenient business regulations and privileges for foreign firms have created a haven for foreign investors while driving Polish businesses into bankruptcy. Billions are hauled out of the country without being taxed, and in many cases workers are exploited through either insultingly low wages or incredibly below standard workplace conditions. Small and medium sized domestic industries are being systematically disassembled.
Moreover, the tools we are equipped with as a democracy to keep the elites and the current government in check have been crippled. Justice, in its most outspoken sense has become irrelevant. Instead, the law of the land that prevails today claims “he who is stronger and more powerful is more equal and right.” This in effect derails traditional government planning in the cultural, social and economic sphere by upholding only the interests of small groups or even individuals. The government in power today is indifferent towards defending Poland’s good name and instead remains quiet and docile hoping to climb its way up in global ranks and higher positions in the European Union. This privatization of politics has led to the lack of competent officials defending our national interests in the international arena.
The state in which education has found itself in is horrendous. History in the classroom is being cropped and tailored beyond recognition and mandatory literature is being removed while more time and effort is being invested to expose our children to politically correct “learning experiments.” Our culture has been hijacked by highly atypical individuals and trends that bent or undermine Polish and European traditions. The examples of this cultural vandalism are abundant. In a previous speech on December 13, 2014, I mentioned that “the current government is like a burdensome sack of rocks on the backs of our citizens and society.” If this sack were to finally fall off the backs of the people, the lives of millions of Poles would improve. Better yet, with this liberated enthusiasm, Poland would strive towards the betterment of millions of Polish families. The pervasive problems of unemployment, mass emigration, crumbling healthcare, and the demographic crisis would shrivel in the face of Poland’s sudden renewed energy. Poles are in dire need of a capable and open government, transparent politics, mutual respect, support for their families, an undiminished education, and improved sense of personal, national, and economic security. They need to be absolutely sure that Poland actually belongs to them. They need to know that they are the sole decision makers impervious to cons and manipulations.
Are these expectations achievable? Yes, they are undoubtedly achievable. The Law and Justice Party is a party with a straightforward program adopted one year ago that recognizes these problems and dedicated to solving them. This party has the great honor of having the best and brightest amongst its ranks. They are professionally as well as morally equipped to perform their duties and realize our common dreams. We have persevered in the face of countless hardships and threats that were determined to dismantle us. However, we stood strong no matter how grim the situation may have been. The Smoleńsk tragedy did not break our will and neither did anything that came in its aftermath. We are capable of reacting to evil even when it was prevalent within our own party. When the abuse of power crept into our own party, when our own members perpetuated double standards and waved around their supposed immunity, we drew the line. For us, all it takes is a glance at how the Civic Platform and the Polish People’s Party practice their superiority over others and reveal their hypocrisy and simply say: no, that is not how the Law and Justice Party does business. And for that today, the party has forged a strong and united political front that is more than able to win presidential as well as parliamentary elections. These victories are aimed to change Poland.
We must however remember that our morals and reasoning alone does not guarantee everlasting success, only relentless and great determination no matter how merciless the conditions may be. That includes faulty vote counting, manipulations, sound bite wars, and gray propaganda, all being bolstered by the incumbent government and its allies in the mainstream media.
Another potential obstacle is our potential personal shortcomings, we have to decide here and now whether or not we are willing to give in to our weaknesses and temptations that may potentially hand over the victory to our opposition. All it takes is one person to undermine our struggle. That is why our only guarantee is upholding our own integrity, honesty, and good will. Those who fail to stay vigilant hurt the party and fail Poland.
Another condition for a sound victory is acquiring the warrant to monitor the election process at the district level all the way up to the capitol. The necessary steps will be in place to ensure proper election protocol is respected by every volunteer, councilman, and commissioner. Currently a petition is underway demanding transparent and open elections. The most important assignment we have today is amassing tens of thousands of volunteers ready and willing to uphold the citizen’s pinnacle duty of casting his or her vote. This will never come to fruition if we refuse to go beyond party lines or reach out to other groups and organizations. Organizations like Radio Maryja, the Polish Newspaper Club, the Lech Kaczyński movement, patriotic organization modeled for youths, or local residents, or historical reenactment groups. This is an enormous challenge; no one should be able to have a role in an electoral commission without the proper and mandatory training. Training volunteers in knowing what to do and when and who to contact in a given situation is a huge task.
Finally, full participation and fervor is expected from us during the presidential election and later the parliamentary elections. Starting today and until the end of May the most important task will be the presidential election. We have a commendable candidate. Andrzej Duda’s numerous qualities include an unhindered sense of integrity, an impressive intellectual and experienced background along with brimming political experience that Mr. Duda acquired while serving in the President’s Chancellery with great approval by the late president Lech Kaczyński himself. In the European Parliament, he earned the greatest acclaim amongst his Polish peers. He is young and exuding with energy, more than capable of facing head on the hard work that will come with this election and the obligations ahead when serving Poland and its citizens. No other competing candidate with all due respect even comes close to Mr. Duda.
Andrzej Duda’s responsibility is not be envied, take into account that his main opponent is harbored by the mainstream media so effectively that in some spheres that candidate is transformed and perceived as someone entirely different than in reality. That candidate is without a doubt a fixture of the radical left wing of the Civic Platform which therefore has nothing to do with the values that his close collaborators and associates claim to represent. They sway public opinion by taking advantage of the average Joe’s disinclination to everyday politics and design their image around what they want the voter to see. They are reluctant to reveal his staunch support of the Military Information Services (WSI) whose ties with Moscow during Communist rule was stronger than any other agency at the time; or his cemented and warm relations with Janusz Palikot and their condoning of his harmful vision of traditional and family life; or his unrestrained public hatred beyond professional etiquette towards the late president Lech Kaczyński. Outrageous comments such as the “blind sniper” or “the sort of assassination fit for that sort of visit” following the halting of President Lech Kaczyński’s motorcade with the use of firearms, say it all. His behavior in front of the Presidential Palace and his determination to remove the memorial cross needs to be considered. The inconsistencies with his biography have gained considerable attention as well as his past disappointing work as Speaker of the House, snubbing women of parliament, the acting president role, and confiscation of legitimate rights and privileges of the opposition. His role as Speaker of the House after the Smoleńsk tragedy speaks louder than words. His incomplete testimonies and sheltering by the media also come to mind. Finally, his previous two terms as vice minister and later minister of defense beg for a glimpse if not more detailed review.
We must be able to freely talk about all of this. Our society cannot be misled and deceived. How else are we to strive for a better and democratic Poland? Candidates for the most important positions in government have always been closely scrutinized by the media. This is one of the most critical threads of a properly functioning democracy. Alas, in Poland this is not the case. That is why it is so crucial for Poland to know who they are voting for and what their options and alternatives are. The campaign road is rough and it is only going to get more unforgiving. Even now attempts are being made to discourage us. Rumors and gossip are spread by willing journalists. The well tested game of so-called public opinion polls has begun. These schemes were common place in the election of 1990s. Back then the Center Alliance - the predecessor of Law and Justice - became its victim. In the 2005 presidential elections, the late president Lech Kaczyński scored twice as bad as his opponent Donald Tusk (22%-45%), while later in the second round some polls appear giving Donald Tusk a lead 38 to 62. His lead was projected to be 24 percentage points, yet at the final call he lost by 8 points (54-46), which gives an astounding 32 point margin of error. The lesson is simple: polls such as these are to be taken with a grain of salt. Take Andrzej Duda’s purported public support between 12% to 38% and his opponent, Komorowski, celebrating support of 47% to 66%. The situation is very unclear. The fact remains that Mr. Duda’s support is growing along with his popularity.
Our victory in 2005 was the direct result of hard work and undeniable determination. Those elections were important. Looking back I am now more convinced than ever before about that. These upcoming elections are that much more crucial. All the effort that we can possibly muster is required. That being said, we also need to follow that up with a tremendous show of organization. That is why I have ordered to transform the district administrations into electoral bodies which will later entail the inclusion of regional administrations as electoral bodies. The fraternal support for Andrzej Duda will find its way from all our parliament members, councilmen, staff, and fellow citizens. All of us regardless of our duties and competencies can make a world of difference; all it takes is the right amount of activism, faith in victory, and conviction that we can change Poland for the better.
Photo Source: www.polskieradio.pl