Sometimes I despair!
Two days ago saw the major Ukrainian political parties selecting the MPs who will sit on the party lists for the seats allocated via the proportional representation part of the electoral system.
Ergo, these MPs are not in a head-to-head election for a particular seat against another specific candidate but are simply given a seat depending upon how well their political party does. A safe haven for the well known and often seriously disliked MPs, to insure they will remain in the RADA as long as they are high enough up the party list to be on the right side of the proportional representation line, when it is drawn, after the votes are counted.
In short, a way of parties insuring their favourites, or the most useful in the patriarchal system, or the unquestioning “yes men”, or the financial sponsors, or those with dirt on others, all remain firmly sat at the table whether they are competent or not, or would have won a constituency seat if brave enough to go head to head against others.
Now I really can’t be bothered to go through all those on the lists of the major parties, but I will go through the top ten of each so we can see how those most desired by the parties to remain in the RADA will change Ukraine for the better when they are elected into power/opposition.
I will highlight those which should be on any such list with a better than average chance of putting Ukraine and Ukrainians before themselves, or at the very least are capable of doing a competent job that when the scores are added up over their actions good and bad, leave Ukraine and Ukrainians slightly ahead of their own interests.
United Opposition: Yulia Tymoshenko, Arseney Yatseniuk, Anatoliy Hrytsenko, Oleksandr Turchynov, Yuri Letsenko, Vyacheslav Kyrylenko, Hryhoriy Nemyria, Serhey Sobolev, Borys Tarasiuk and Mykola Tomenko.
Yes indeed, the United Opposition are offering the Ukrainian people the very same dysfunctional, self-serving leadership that failed so badly to deliver anything of any use to the Ukrainian public only one election cycle ago. No new faces, no new ideology, no new policies – and no apologies for the complete disaster they were last time they were in power.
PoR: Mykola Azarov, Taisiya Povaliy, Sergey Tigipko, Andriy Klyuev, Oleksandr Yefremov, Iryna Akimova, Volodymr Boiko, Boris Kolisnikov, Leonid Kozhara and Volodymr Rybak.
Naturally, PoR being the current government have few surprises in their top 10 as all are current ministers – however 3 are genuinely good at their roles, the rest are average at best and abysmal at worst. So, more of the very same very unpopular government if they win, with the same scams, same cronyism, same unpopular (but to be fair sometimes necessary) policies and a very unpopular leadership in opposition if they lose to the equally dire self-serving United Opposition.
Now it wasn’t my intention to highlight only 3 from each list. It just happens that only 6 names from the 20 are any good/remotely competent for Ukraine at what they do, or could do, if in power. The others are seriously flawed or woefully inadequate in one way or another, throughout the entire lists of both PoR and rival United Opposition.
Still, as a policy watcher rather than political commentator trying to spin one party as the saviour of Ukraine over another, I am in the fortunate position to say that if it looks like sh*t and smells like sh*t – then it probably is sh*t. Looking at the party lists for both the PoR and United Opposition, with a few exceptions on both lists, what is on offer is sh*t, and the same old tried and tested sh*t that has proved itself to be sh*t time and again in the vast majority of cases!
If it was possible to cherry-pick across the entire political spectrum from all parties, whilst it would be possible to arrive at a fairly decent cabinet, the remainder of those sitting in the RADA would still be truly dreadful – and truly dreadful seems to be what the next RADA make-up will be, regardless of which party wins however many seats.
Another 5 years of seriously inadequate politicians (for the most part) to fill the seats of the RADA. It is probably just as well that whatever the RADA decides is completely ignored by the regional fiefdoms much of the time.
It seems that for change to come to Ukrainian politics, it will have to be bottom – up driven and aimed at the administrations of the regional fiefdoms/local government – with burning torches and pitch-forks on occasion no doubt!