JANUARY 8 2007 08:57h
The demagogic rhetoric that the government is a sacred cow and that whoever criticises the government is against the country, is not unusual
In the shadow of exchanging insults between certain MPs of the Croatian People’s Party (HNS) and Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) and everyday barren disputes of MPs of the (major opposition’s) Social Democratic Party (SDP) and (the ruling) HDZ on the principle “which was first the chicken or the egg”, the legislative stampede of this stint of the Croatian parliament was placed second.
They do not even read laws
Correct, it is a legislative stampede of unfathomable proportions, which directly affects and additionally spurs the legal insecurity of Croatian citizens and the non-functioning of the legal state. This parliament has so far passed 397 laws, or which most, or 83 percent, were made in urgent procedure.
A significant number of government and parliament members did not even have the time to read most of the laws, let alone discuss them systematically. Despite this, they voted on them without any remorse and thus designed the destiny of their voters. I belong to the rare group of MPs who carefully examine and simulate the application of legal texts, and I try to point to numerous omissions, incompleteness and mistakes.
Party officials on-call
Because of this, we take flack from those MPs who get prepared written discussions and, stuttering, read them out with praises sung to the government or something similar. It is sad that they are bothered by somebody wishing to amend a bad legal text and not bothered by the fact that they have not even read the text. Their hypocrisy goes so far that many have been selected by their party as on-call, so they constantly respond and correct incorrect statements by other MPs who at least read the legal text being discussed.
They are prepared to reduce every criticism made in good faith to a demagogic rhetoric that the government is a sacred cow and that whoever criticises the government is against the country or the like. These problems by far outweigh trying to estimate who is drunk, who sober or similar.
Making citizens’ lives difficult
The saddest part is that many of the laws passed in such a manner are already making life difficult for Croatian citizens, and the same MPs voted positively on them. A special problem is a group of laws being harmonised, that is, adjusted with the acquis communautaire of the European Union. Many of these legal texts in effect represent the verbatim translation of corresponding guidelines of directives of the European Union, and are such that, in the end, even the translators do not understand them.
This is why I often point to the example of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, which had ordinary people employed in its ministries whose task was to read and understand a legal text. If they understood it, only then were conditions met for the passing of the law. As things are, I fear that this, fifth, parliament stint, will be remembered by a legislative stampede.