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We Apologise, Dear Readers, But We Can't

Published on 1 June 2014 11:03, euinside, Twitter: @euinside

The European elections have ended and euinside has already done its first analyses. We did for Croatia as well, one of the two places we cover directly. However, this has proved a mission impossible for the voting in Bulgaria. The problem is that euinside has two audiences - Bulgarian and the much larger one who consume our analyses in English. How can we explain them what exactly is going on in Bulgaria so that they can understand it? We were faced by two options: to analyse the results and the campaign as if this was the most normal campaign with the most normal politicians and political parties, which means to accept and create the feeling that the environment in Bulgaria is just normal and is not at all different than the other 27 EU member states or to try and explain to our readers what exactly is going on. We decided, however, that journalistic ethics does not allow us to do the former and the latter is worth only for the poorest of tabloids.

That is why, dear readers, especially those of you who are reading our English section, please excuse us, but we cannot provide you with a sufficiently clear picture of what is going on in Bulgaria. The reason is that in the country, in the past years, a horrible profanation of democracy and rule of law has been going on. The election legislation has been subject to hundreds of amendments each year and this is one of the legislative actions of the parliament which takes the most of the parliamentary time. The problem with the frequent change of the electoral legislation, and not only the electoral for that matter, was pointed out by the European Commission in its regular reports under the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (CVM) in the area of justice and the fight against corruption. For the first time, this year, for the European elections were made amendments after the campaign had already started, which is unthinkable in a rule of law country, in a civilised country that had fulfilled the accession criteria of the EU!

The tone, behaviour, body language and the wording of the leading politicians are comparable only to the humanity's evolution stages before homo sapiens - primeval, rough, insulting for a person from the 21st century who lives with the illusion that they are in the heart of Europe. Media are hysterical, controlled, misleading, manipulating, with unclear ownership and influence. There is neither political nor civil force that is capable of serving as an anchor in this madness. All boundaries of decency, upbringing and morality are completely abolished and there is no bottom. The campaign has also revealed the terrible level of totalitarianism and feudalism in the countryside. People who live under coercion, in misery and fear. People who believe that freedom is a kilogramme meat they can get from a shop with empty shelves which their employer provides them with coupons for. A shop whose owner is their employer. People who are punished because the world had learnt about their tragedy.

It is not clear what is the scale of vote-buying, but it is supposed that outside the cities this is the only way of voting. Apart from being coerced by employers or by local political elites, more and more often people decide on their own to sell their vote because they do not see an alternative.

Bulgaria, dear readers, is very sick. The tumour has grown into many metastases. Treatment seems more and more impossible. The insignificant number of people who still believe in their strength are conducting a guerrilla war against the establishment in an attempt to rescue whatever there is left in their country. The prospects for recovery have significantly diminished also because of the current atmosphere in the EU where centrifugal forces are preparing to destroy everything built so far and to return the continent in the times when everyone was on their own, often by fighting with neighbours or others. Even more desperate the situation looks because one of the main culprits for the situation in Bulgaria is leader of the Party of European Socialists. That is why, dear readers, please accept our apologies, but we are unable to provide you with unbiased and clear picture of the European elections in Bulgaria!

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