We are getting back to work after a long and protracted holiday (even if we did not take one, everyone else seems to have done so). Streets are busier. Shops are crowding up slowly again. Supermarkets may even begin to stock the shelves once more. The fall season - in a way very different from the burgeoning of spring - is all about new beginnings. Schemes hatched on the beach will be either evaluated or binned. Board rooms are being dusted down and ready to contain corporate posteriors once again.
And it is high time to think about politics.
Elections are coming again and the campaign clamor is about to begin clamoring for our attention. We have the usual suspects to root for and to despise - depending on which side of the fence toward which we wobble. Same old song and dance. What is needed is something to stir the pot.
With this in mind, I am accepting nominations to run for President of Serbia.
Presidential elections are a little bit further away (although I have no idea when further away will happen), so there is enough time to establish the SSS (Stranka Stranaca Srbjie), constitute its board, and start pasting up the billboards.
Among my priorities, as a candidate, is to have a LIST OF PRIORITIES. This seems to get very little play here - no need for policy positions, platforms, prospectuses, and programs: we usually elect on personalities. Normally, the vote is against the rest of the personalities and not for the remaining one or two.
The SSS Platform
- Free parking for SSS members
- State sinecures for all of my friends, including Facebook friends
- Support for the Independent Republic of Palilula
- Earmarked taxes
- Institutionalized corruption (i.e., VAT redemptions on bribery)
- Other Important Stuff
While Other Important Stuff covers a multitude of sins, the idea of the Independent Republic of Palilula is a winner. We will declare independence on a Tuesday afternoon, say, apply for EU funding and USAID donations for institution building, be coy with NATO, and set up an independent state-within-a state along the lines of Vatican City, with me as Pope, by the end of the week.
Not to stick too closely to ceremony, my humble title will be His Serene Eminence the Maharishi of Palilula.
We will erect toll booths on the Pančevo Bridge to help revenue streams, charge admission to Tašmajdan Park, and levy traffic congestion fees for non-Palilula residents travelling our streets. We will also have to amend the constitution to allow the maharishi to hold the office of president concurrently.
In return, IRP citizens will be offered visa-free travel to the rest of Belgrade, a new sticker for their cars (the license plates will come later), and our own currency, the IRP Tolar which will be pegged to the Chinese yuan. We, in Palilula, know which way the wind is blowing....
Nominations may be submitted through this blog, by public declarations on street corners (bring your own soap box), or by the writing on the walls.
Good luck to all!