Teachers are preparing for a strike, and the economic downturn is reaching the next stage, as the country, whose prime minister firmly claims that a hostile neighbor will attack it within the next three years, is losing its entrepreneurial perspective and foreign investments. In light of the decline happening in the Estonian state, the bankruptcy of the political forces operating here must be acknowledged. One cannot act in a crisis according to the models that work in normal situations; instead, unity must be sought to focus on solving problems and preventing potential threats, rather than bickering. Instead, we see how the Riigikogu (Estonian Parliament) fails to find common ground, and the government is more concerned with satisfying the prime minister's ego than doing serious work.
Estonian politics are ugly and self-centered.
Politics is known to be the art of compromise, but when there is no willingness to find common ground, it's merely a simple craft. Estonian politicians are predominantly failed craftsmen, whose only apparent goal is to denigrate their opponents. Of course, our prime minister, Kaja Kallas, is the brightest star in this regard, who even screams at her own party colleagues if they do not wish to step in exact unison with her, let alone opposition politicians. For Kallas, these are complete idiots who lack even the most basic thinking ability. But the opposition is not in debt in this regard either. It is embarrassing to watch how several EKRE (Conservative People's Party of Estonia) leading politicians, instead of discussing principled positions, focus on demonstrating personal antipathies. Thoughts may be right, but when overly spiced with sarcasm, they lose their freshness and become meaningless derogation.
Following the prime minister's example, several members of the government cabinet have also been infected with self-centered narcissism. A chilling example of how ego destroys a politician is the behavior of the Minister of the Interior, Lauri Läänemets, in a recent Riigikogu information session, where, in response to an uncomfortable question from Martin Helme, he unmistakably snapped that he would remember the questioner's face. The minister has not explained what he actually meant, but in addition to offense, his body language also read a clear threat. Such incidents should not occur in a democratic country.
The Riigikogu as a dirty marketplace.
In recent years, the Riigikogu of the Republic of Estonia has increasingly declined. There is no discussion, no compromises are made, principles are not upheld, and instead, an increasingly ugly mud wrestling is taking place. Since the Riigikogu is chaired by a character who has failed in leading his party and in broader politics, the influence of this institution on the government's actions and the functioning of the state has regrettably diminished. The Riigikogu is not expected to provide solutions, but to rubber-stamp the government's will and occasionally adopt some toothless foreign policy statements. Riigikogu information sessions resemble a poor amateur troupe performance, where the text is forgotten, and lines do not reach the hall. The only thing our representatives agree on is maintaining expense allowances in their current form. The Riigikogu's task – to represent the people by finding solutions through discussions and debates that satisfy the majority of citizens – has been forgotten and replaced by grinding teeth and exposing one's pettiness.
Tired wires need to be replaced.
If electrical wires are old and tired, a fire may follow, burning the house to the ground. If politicians drown in personal gain and self-admiration, it is high time to think about replacing them, because the house, in the form of the Estonian state, is our only one, and if we let it catch fire, we will be left under the open sky. Considering that last year 10,721 children were born in Estonia, which is the smallest number of births since 1919, and 15,832 people died, and according to registered migration data, 20,209 newcomers arrived in Estonia, it is clear that the roof of the house is already smoldering. It is time to act.
We need a new Estonian Congress.
The teachers' strike starting next week is a good example of how a force committed to a goal can unite people to fight for their rights. Certainly, in addition to the Education Workers' Union, other strong trade unions are needed in Estonia, which would make it as unpleasant as possible for the government to spit on people's living conditions. But effective trade unions alone are not enough. In the near future, completely new parties focused on the goal and restraining personal ambitions for the welfare of the people must also appear. Of course, I am not thinking here of a humor room formed of puppets like Eesti200, but of credible and action-oriented associations. And ideally, a new Estonian Congress should also come together, whose task would be to find and map the common ground of all serious political forces, which would lead us back to the rise.
The Estonian people deserve a full-fledged life, where they are not constantly scared of a war starting tomorrow, where citizens' rights are as protected as those of new settlers to the country, where budget money is found by cutting waste in state institutions, not by raising taxes, where green hysteria is replaced by promoting an environmentally friendly reasonable lifestyle, where there is less offense and more joy, and where people are paid a decent salary for their daily hard work.