The picture at right is from the back of my "klēts", formerly a cow shed, and before that the traditional store shed of a Latvian farm. I have converted it to become my winter apartment. It is about mid-January, 2009, after the sunset. The picture makes me think of the Norvegian painter Nolde, who, too, loved the sun low on the horizon for what it brought forth.
In a blog at the http://politika.lv/blogi/index.php?id=61121 site, Iveta Kažoka wrote (22.1.09) that “In many countries there are consultations [by the government] with the public on a regular basis. However, to realize this in Latvia, state institution will need to overcome their fear of direct communication with the people and their responses (the unpleasant ones, too) concerning their work. (Judging from accessible political party websites, the parties fear this approach as well, even though theoretically they should be interested in the views of the electorate!).” [My translation.]
I responded: “This identifies the great problem of the Saeima, the ministers, and other [government employees]. These have separated subjectivity from the law to such an extent, that the citizens of the state have come to believe that the law belongs only to the state. Courts of law with their [dramatically] long sentences increase this feeling and separate the state from the people yet further.”
What will rejoin the political institutions of Latvia, especially the Saeima and the various ministers of the state, to the people when 90 percent of the people have no faith in them? http://farm1.static.flickr.com/88/231873493_45c2750c14.jpg?v=0
Though I found the 90% statistic among the statements issued by Jaunais Laiks, a political party, other figures, allegedly originating with the EU, go as high as 95%. If these figures are a short-term aberration, perhaps one may dismiss them as irrelevant. Nevertheless, they have been heard bandied about for some time and are, thus, comparable to extensive 3rd degree burns (the most severe kind) to the body politic. Burns are not only difficult to treat, but require near perfect conditions for the healing treatment to succeed.
If the economic problems are a mirage, then we are caught in a nightmare and will wake from it unharmed. This is, however, impossible, except the body social is a science fiction writer. On the other hand, if the nightmare is real, then it must have its tithe of blood—if we are to awaken at all. Such tithes of blood usually are wars of liberation (sometimes civil wars) or a revolution. Both are costly in terms of blood and lives. Such a blood letting is very unlikely in Latvia for a number of reasons, but one reason is that Latvians are too demoralized as a social body http://nmhm.washingtondc.museum/collections/archives/agalleries/1918flu/Ncp1603.jpg to ever congregate in sufficient numbers to confront their exploiters, albeit be they their own. The only blood tithe under such conditions as are affecting Latvia is self-sacrifice. Only self-sacrifice can seize the day for a demoralized people, because it need begin with only one person.
Of course, the risk that any self-sacrifice takes upon him- or herself is that the act will go unnoticed. Such already was the case with Adolfs Buķis in 1993. Mr. Buķis chose the right place (the Monument of Freedom in Riga), but the government soon hushed up the event by calling Buķis “a disturbed person” and in place of the promised investigation offered silence. Today there is no shortage of tourists pissing on the monument. http://www.tribine.lv/upload/3537/images/urinate.jpg or news items all declaring such acts an outrage.
A couple of blogs ago, I suggested that the current PM of Latvia, Ivars Godmanis, may already have assumed the role of an unacknowledged dictator of Latvia, and cited Godmanis penchant to explain everything in detail and taking much time to do so as the “zemteksts” (uncercurrent) for such hyperactivity. While some readers may think such a suggestion ridiculous, I have argued at great length (over 30 blogs) at http://latviansonline.com/forum/viewthread/33000/ that self-sacrifice is an old tradition of Latvians (and all ancient people) and is focused on the figure of Jānis (John). No doubt, Jesus undid John if not personally then as a result of dead men becoming manipulable, and for all I know, PM Godmanis is a good neo-Christian Latvian with no objections regarding such manipulation.
However, it would hurt my ears to hear PM Ivars [Jānis] Godmanis tell me to go piss off at the Freedom Monument http://www.crackunit.com/wp-content/image_well/pissing.jpg . But I would hear “Lihgo” http://www.tours.lv/images/liigo.jpg and give him my qualified support, if he asked the police to publicize its investigation or get on with it—concerning the case of Adolfs [Jānis] Buķis, the one Latvian who gave his life being fully self-conscious that he did it so that Latvia may be.
(End of series.)