Laboratory Europe

Is there a way of making this world hospitable to Europe? For we, Europeans, are not feeling quite at ease in today’’s world. Heidegger once said that we begin to think about a problem only when things suddenly start behaving in a surprising way. Only then do we move from the sphere of handeln [acting] to the sphere of verhandeln [negotiating]. Until that point the facts are just a part of our everyday experience and we are not fully aware of their existence. Only when things start to go wrong do we transfer them into the realm of observeable nuisances […]

Prejav symbolickej sily / Téma

Americké médiá o dušu rozoberajú inauguráciu nového prezidenta. Zatiaľ čo tanečné schopnosti a oblečenie Baracka Obamu a jeho manželky Michelle ocenili na jednotku, jeho inauguračný prejav nedosiahol očakávané rétorické výšiny a neobsahoval okrídlené slová, ktoré vojdu do učebníc a budú inšpirovať budúce pokolenia. Väčšina komentátorov dospela k záveru, že to ani nebolo potrebné, lebo inšpirujúci bol samotný fakt, že sa Barack Obama mohol stať prezidentom USA. Pozitívne bolo prijaté aj to, že sa prezident jasne dištancoval od politiky svojho predchodcu, nezakrýval problémy, pred ktorými Spojené štáty stoja, a svojim spoluobčanom dal jasne najavo, že si tiež budú musieť vysúkať rukávy, lebo sú spoluzodpovední […]

A Russian Winter

  I can’’t understand why Russia’’s turning off the gas taps sent such shockwaves through all of Europe and why even the leaders of the Old World could not understand what made the strapping, rosy-cheeked Gazprom managers take such a brutal decision. In actual fact, it’’s clearer than the Moscow and St. Petersburg sun. It’’s yet another inevitable step in the inexorable quest to promote Russia’’s unique culture around the world. A freezing calm In the early nineties the ungrateful European countries, including Czecho-Slovakia, expelled from their territories the Russian army which had been promoting peace and understanding among nations for twenty […]

Forgetting the crown

The notorious stamp affair, a lawsuit against a group of people accused of forging some hundred million crowns, continues to drag on sixteen years after Slovakia introduced its own currency, the Slovak crown (locally known as the koruna). The case is shrouded in mystery, with one theory claiming that the fraud was perpetrated by the secret services on direct orders of the then Prime Minister Vladimír Mečiar; one of those involved, probably a secret service stooge, was assassinated in 1996. In this case, the sluggish work of the Slovak courts has reached truly epic dimensions, and the victim of the alleged fraud – […]