At the Castle, instead of red shorts, there is green rubber, a joke is spreading on social networks. Will ex-president Zeman be amused by such popular creativity? “But no, I have respect for the army, and if army officers, even generals, are called green rubber, it’s rather disrespectful,” said Zeman.
The outgoing director of Czech Television, Petr Dvořák, recently recalled that the famous story with the ashtray after Zeman’s presidential election never happened. How was it really? “If I remember correctly, and forgive me for being sclerotic, I used to smoke all the time and everywhere. So I came there when they invited me and I said: Wouldn’t it be an ashtray, Mr. Director? Mr. Dvořák said: They will bring it to you right away. And then Mr. Šámal asked me to sign the memorial. Well, I don’t know that Petr Dvořák forgot about it, it wasn’t that important. What was more important was what we said to each other on that TV back then,” Zeman added, but he had forgotten about it. They probably asked him how he felt after the election.
In the 1960s, Zeman was the founder of a futurological company. Currently, however, according to him, futurology does not prevail, but ideology. “After Marxism-Leninism came green ideology. And like any ideology, Marx called it false consciousness, it was false consciousness. They also force us to believe the only known truth, ban cars with internal combustion engines and, as Greta Thunberg says, that’s a shy teenager, if you know her: I convinced my parents to go vegan. So good: Let’s not eat meat, let’s not drive cars with internal combustion engines and we’ll be fine,” Zeman pointed out.
- The first directly elected president of the Czech Republic
According to Zeman, ideologies often mistake decline for progress, dictatorship for democracy, slavery for freedom. “Another feature that occurs in the only correct ideology is servility. If you want to call it another way, then obedience. But obedience to whom? Not obedience to one’s own citizens, who are of course voters, but obedience to some foreign power. We used to be subject to the Kremlin, and sometimes I fear that when they rule on the other side of the globe, we salute and obey. I say this as someone who once banned the American ambassador from entering the Castle because he was interfering in our internal affairs. And I spoke with President Putin shortly afterwards, and he was so pleased and said: You banned the American ambassador from entering. It is well. And I said to him: Mr. President, if the Russian ambassador to the Czech Republic did the same thing as the American ambassador, I will also ban him from entering the Castle. That is, the servility does not matter at all whether it is in the East or in the West. What’s important is that you don’t defend national interests and that you listen to foreign interests,” Zeman said, as Putin smiled at the time.
As long as there are free elections, Zeman believes that there will be people who will prefer professionalism to amateurism. “And especially those who will have the ability to listen to the arguments of the other side as well. That is, the arguments of those with whom you disagree. It’s very easy to listen to arguments you agree with,” Zeman said.
He also had his say on the purchase of F-35 fighters. According to him, it is a useless investment. “Of course, when you issue it, you lower the standard of living of citizens. But, for example, investments in transport infrastructure or in housing construction, which according to Keynes are investments that have the greatest multiplier effect, that is, they cause a chain multiplying reaction, lead to economic growth, so these investments, as a result, increase, not decrease, your standard of living.” Zeman noted that a distinction must be made between useless and useful investments.
Photogallery: – Strúdl for Zeman
And according to Zeman, how will the Russian-Ukrainian conflict develop? “I have already answered several times. I believe it is a so-called frozen conflict, a conflict that is largely prestige, a conflict that on the one hand has large reserves in manpower, that is Russia, on the other hand, large reserves in modern weapons technology, that is Ukraine thanks to supplies from the West. These two reserves will cancel each other out to some extent, and therefore the conflict will last a very, very long time. That I would wish for peace, or at least a cease-fire given the enormous human sacrifices, is quite self-evident, but one thing is a wish and another is a reality,” Zeman mentioned.
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Social networks and the media are full of the fact that Prime Minister Fiala went shopping in Germany and compared the prices and the size of the package at Nutella, for example. He did all of this in the kitchen in Kramář’s villa, allowed himself to be filmed and also talked about the fact that thanks to the pressure of the Czech government, food prices are really falling, even though it is cheaper abroad. “It is good when the Prime Minister familiarizes himself with a few generally known facts. It seems a bit behind the times. Imagine if you went to Panama and then told Czech viewers that the Panama Strait exists. That way would be quite expensive and the information would be obsolete, because everyone except the one who is communicating it already knows it. Likewise, anyone who has ever shopped in Germany, and there are many such people, knows that the famous Nutella, for example, is about 50 percent cheaper there than here. So discovering America or inventing the wheel is a somewhat outdated practice,” Zeman said.
The Czech press is now full of advertisements from the Principality of Liechtenstein, which points out that it does not want a court, but an out-of-court settlement with the Czech Republic. “Why don’t the Liechtensteiners want the court to decide on this? For a simple reason. Right now, the Czech court has once again rejected the property claims of the Liechtensteins. In other words, when you know that the Czech court will decide against you, they kindly offer you an out-of-court settlement,” explained Zeman, who read the Lichtenstein proposal and remembered Jezinky. . It’s essentially a different form of handing over this property to the Liechtensteins, rather with the caveat that you’re allowed to get a little carried away with it, because you’ll also be a participant in some foundation,” added Zeman.
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author: Vanda Efnerová