Monday, September 12, 2011

Dumbest political story of all time

Heil Kaczynski?
Poland's main media channels cast their collective focus Monday on political parties' proposed tax and pension plans and the ways the various challengers ahead of the October 9 parliamentary elections plan to . . . no, they didn't, did they? Instead, they focused on what I think is the dumbest Polish political story of all time.

The heroine of this story is Law and Justice (PiS) MP Beata Kempa, who is somehow perfect as the centre for the idiocy that occurred.

It all started when the Polish state-owned press agency PAP received an afternoon email purportedly from Kempa saying she would not run in the October elections. As you can imagine, a bombshell of this nature must have had PAP journalists buzzing with adrenalin as they prepared to unleash such momentous news on an unsuspecting nation.

And then they did. Bam. News bars went yellow or red or whatever colour they have chosen to signify that THIS IS SOMETHING IMPORTANT. Of course, viewers only want to part with their ever precious attention for "really big" news. So, the news channels in Poland pretty much classify everything as "breaking news." I imagine a dog farting in the forest would be enough to get TVN24 to blast away with their yellow breaking news bar.

So Kempa is not going to run…ho hum. But wait, there's more.

It turns out someone must have hacked into Kempa's email and sent the message to PAP since she was entirely unaware of the alleged resignation. Egad. Eureka. Whoa Nelly. PiS's spokesperson was predictably outraged. "I completely deny [the report]," he told TVN24. "I spoke to the MP. She didn't submit such a statement! We're sending the matter to the prosecutor."

Anyone who's followed Polish politics, especially as practiced by PiS, for even a nano-second will know PiS's likely thinking. Someone (the Civic Platform (PO)) hacked into Kempa's email in order to attack her credibility because they are scared of her awesome political skill. The prosecutor must find the culprits (the PO), though we know they won't because they are controlled by the powers that be (the PO) and they aren't us.

With still just under 4 weeks to go to the elections, I sincerely hope the level of debate and news coverage will improve a tad. I also sincerely -- down on my knees -- hope this will remain the dumbest Polish political news story of all time.

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