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justice for all
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Changing demographics, I mean people who were brought up as super traditional and conservative are dying out. Already my parents who are in their 60s are different to their parents in this regard, and I'm even more different, and kids on Twitter who are about to turn 18 and vote are even more different.

My personal situation - my husband is a foreigner and he has a job in a foreign company. We had a (way) better standard of life in Poland and if it was only up to me I would be back right with the first Wizzair flight.

I say, if there's any serious competition, PiS might lose another election because they're literally asking for it. The only problem is lack of serious competition.

And no, PiS is not stupid enough for Polexit, because EU gives them money. Look how Duda backpedaled the LGBT comments after heavy Western critique.
Fully agreed on the lack of serious competition to PiS - it's a very weak point of the Polish political scene. They are so mediocre, particularly PO, that they essentially wasted the last 5 years and did nothing to come up with any serious alternative to the ruling party. For the most part their programme was being anti-PiS. Paraphrasing the classic master: PiS don't have anyone to lose to. I don't really know why that is. My theory is most talented people just go to private business or science and avoid involvement in political life hence the mediocrity of the politicians in Poland. Becoming a politician or an official is just not appealing enough to be a leading career path for the smartest people in town.
As for Polexit - yes it's not very likely but I wouldn't rule it out completely, the more looming danger is getting marginalised by the EU as a result of our government's confronting foreign policy and it's duality between being part of EU and betting all money on USA.
Regarding the cultural transformation (conservative and traditional dying out) I just think it'll take much longer because it's still a very traditional and catholic country (like none other in Europe). Please notice how the far right conservatives who are even to the right side of PiS (Konfederacja) have grown in strength especially among the young people during the last few years.
 

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justice for all
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Poland has always been in danger from the East (Russia) and the West (Germany). Now that it is an ally of Germany, why would it leave UE? Seems pretty stupid if you ask me. That's besides the money, etc
I think regarding the danger from Russia (which has always been present during our history and will always be there) there are basically two strategies to choose from:
1) Being a strong member of the EU and ally with Germany who are the leaders of the EU among the old Western European countries (especially now that UK are out).
2) Ally closely with the USA who have always been Russia's enemy and may be a guarantee of Poland's safety as long as Euroasia remains the priority in their foreign policy.
Unfortunately for Poland these two strategies are not mutually inclusive and at some point it's inevitable to choose one. That is because the interests of the EU and the USA are divergent in many areas and the growing force of China makes them redirect their priorities and objectives.
 

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Fully agreed on the lack of serious competition to PiS - it's a very weak point of the Polish political scene. They are so mediocre, particularly PO, that they essentially wasted the last 5 years and did nothing to come up with any serious alternative to the ruling party. For the most part their programme was being anti-PiS. Paraphrasing the classic master: PiS don't have anyone to lose to. I don't really know why that is. My theory is most talented people just go to private business or science and avoid involvement in political life hence the mediocrity of the politicians in Poland. Becoming a politician or an official is just not appealing enough to be a leading career path for the smartest people in town.
As for Polexit - yes it's not very likely but I wouldn't rule it out completely, the more looming danger is getting marginalised by the EU as a result of our government's confronting foreign policy and it's duality between being part of EU and betting all money on USA.
Regarding the cultural transformation (conservative and traditional dying out) I just think it'll take much longer because it's still a very traditional and catholic country (like none other in Europe). Please notice how the far right conservatives who are even to the right side of PiS (Konfederacja) have grown in strength especially among the young people during the last few years.
I might be voting for Razem in the next elections, unless they pull out some major shit. This isn't the party that matches my ideals 100% (mostly historical) but I met some members on Twitter and they're genuine, caring, calm people that I would like to represent me in the parliament (not their top names but normal members).

Yes, Konfederacja is a more possible threat. We're yet to see what will break out of that egg. Bosak is like Korwin, just less crazy (which might actually be bad because it means he's there to stay). He is more radical than PiS and he really means it - at least while he can talk without consequences. The real question is, if he's suddenly confronted with real life - for example EU countries - how many words is he willing to eat.

If people see PiS vs. PO as a national war, then Razem vs. Konfederacja for the next generation is going to be an atomic national war lol. These young kids seem to be very radical sometimes.
 

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Duda is like victor orban?

Conservative right wing people I know were celebrating his victory a lot.
 

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As per, Western liberals are perceiving a foreign election through the prism of their own obsessions and pet causes, without any serious regard for the broader picture in Poland. I highly doubt gay rights was the decisive issue in this election for most Polish voters, but headline coverage in the English language press rarely moves beyond that issue. It is important and would rightly have motivated people who are passionate about it, but I suspect millions of voters were more interested in questions like taxation, jobs and social welfare.

Just as there are Duda voters who are accepting of gay, lesbian and/or trans people (and people who are at least neutral rather than hostile, if not positive), there will be plenty of conservatives who voted for Trzaskowski, perhaps as a revolt against PiS or because they are more economically liberal, and doubtless for other reasons that outsiders like me know nothing about.

Don't bother pointing out that these are outliers, only amounting to small proportions of each candidate's vote share. Even if they are, it's the small numbers that are most crucial when a candidate wins by a narrow margin. Bourgeois democracies are and always have been about voting for the candidate you consider the least damaging, not for the ideal person who stands for everything you believe in.
 

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Discussion Starter #47
As per, Western liberals are perceiving a foreign election through the prism of their own obsessions and pet causes, without any serious regard for the broader picture in Poland. I highly doubt gay rights was the decisive issue in this election for most Polish voters, but headline coverage in the English language press rarely moves beyond that issue. It is important and would rightly have motivated people who are passionate about it, but I suspect millions of voters were more interested in questions like taxation, jobs and social welfare.

Just as there are Duda voters who are accepting of gay, lesbian and/or trans people (and people who are at least neutral rather than hostile, if not positive), there will be plenty of conservatives who voted for Trzaskowski, perhaps as a revolt against PiS or because they are more economically liberal, and doubtless for other reasons that outsiders like me know nothing about.

Don't bother pointing out that these are outliers, only amounting to small proportions of each candidate's vote share. Even if they are, it's the small numbers that are most crucial when a candidate wins by a narrow margin. Bourgeois democracies are and always have been about voting for the candidate you consider the least damaging, not for the ideal person who stands for everything you believe in.
It was overstated, indeed. While it is important, rule of law, free press and independent judiciary matter much more and Polish govt ruined all of them, I think Trzaskowski emphasised all those problems, hence got 10 mil votes. It is not all because he was not anti-gay. Competitive authoritarianism of Poland will continue unfortunately. Feeling for our progressive Polish friends here.
 

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It was overstated, indeed. While it is important, rule of law, free press and independent judiciary matter much more and Polish govt ruined all of them, I think Trzaskowski emphasised all those problems, hence got 10 mil votes. It is not all because he was not anti-gay. Competitive authoritarianism of Poland will continue unfortunately. Feeling for our progressive Polish friends here.
What is 'progressive' about Trzaskowski, other than a more tolerant attitude toward homosexuality? His economic platform is about as progressive as Boris Johnson's liberal-conservative government here in Britain (and his social policies are more right-wing than anything you'll ever hear from our Tories). He is outflanked from the left by Duda with regards to social welfare, so it's hardly surprising that rural and working class people were more likely to vote for him. What Poland appears to lack is a major left-wing party with a large working class base. PO is not 'progressive' - it's a member of the European People's Party, ffs.

I have every sympathy for sexual minorities in Poland. There is clearly no way to spin this as a good result for their prospects and interests, but their struggle was never going to be solved simply by electing some dreadful euro-liberal. It is too hard to judge another society from outside, but I will not be surprised if the influence of the Catholic Church in Poland, as strong as it appears right now, suffers a similar fate to that of Ireland as it finds itself mired deeper and deeper in scandals. If this has a material effect on the Church's standing, it will weaken the strength of anti-gay sentiment, given deep religious roots of that prejudice.

Go back a couple of decades and it's hard to imagine Ireland so overwhelmingly voting to liberalise its abortion/divorce laws, legalise gay marriage and abolish all blasphemy laws in a series of popular referendums, but it happened and the Catholic resistance was exposed as totally enfeebled. Things can change faster than expected, and I doubt gay people in Poland will shut up in the face of persecution.
 

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Discussion Starter #49
What is 'progressive' about Trzaskowski, other than a more tolerant attitude toward homosexuality? His economic platform is about as progressive as Boris Johnson's liberal-conservative government here in Britain (and his social policies are more right-wing than anything you'll ever hear from our Tories). He is outflanked from the left by Duda with regards to social welfare, so it's hardly surprising that rural and working class people were more likely to vote for him. What Poland appears to lack is a major left-wing party with a large working class base. PO is not 'progressive' - it's a member of the European People's Party, ffs.

I have every sympathy for sexual minorities in Poland. There is clearly no way to spin this as a good result for their prospects and interests, but their struggle was never going to be solved simply by electing some dreadful euro-liberal. It is too hard to judge another society from outside, but I will not be surprised if the influence of the Catholic Church in Poland, as strong as it appears right now, suffers a similar fate to that of Ireland as it finds itself mired deeper and deeper in scandals. If this has a material effect on the Church's standing, it will weaken the strength of anti-gay sentiment, given deep religious roots of that prejudice.

Go back a couple of decades and it's hard to imagine Ireland so overwhelmingly voting to liberalise its abortion/divorce laws, legalise gay marriage and abolish all blasphemy laws in a series of popular referendums, but it happened and the Catholic resistance was exposed as totally enfeebled. Things can change faster than expected, and I doubt gay people in Poland will shut up in the face of persecution.
Bolded > defo, my country too lacks that kind of party and program. Spot on with the Polish electorate. As for the rest of your analysis, I really do not have the necessary context regarding gay rights, or the abortion in Europe. Yes, as far as we hear from Poland, Duda opposed those but I doubt it was the agenda 10 million people who voted opposition shared. They have other, much bigger problems. It was just cool part of the election, western/European press liked to write about.
 

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The funny thing about the Polish media is that the national propaganda machine is orchestrated by a guy who is a fking Portuguese (good looking, like every Portuguese, I may add).
 

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What is 'progressive' about Trzaskowski, other than a more tolerant attitude toward homosexuality? His economic platform is about as progressive as Boris Johnson's liberal-conservative government here in Britain (and his social policies are more right-wing than anything you'll ever hear from our Tories). He is outflanked from the left by Duda with regards to social welfare, so it's hardly surprising that rural and working class people were more likely to vote for him. What Poland appears to lack is a major left-wing party with a large working class base. PO is not 'progressive' - it's a member of the European People's Party, ffs.

I have every sympathy for sexual minorities in Poland. There is clearly no way to spin this as a good result for their prospects and interests, but their struggle was never going to be solved simply by electing some dreadful euro-liberal. It is too hard to judge another society from outside, but I will not be surprised if the influence of the Catholic Church in Poland, as strong as it appears right now, suffers a similar fate to that of Ireland as it finds itself mired deeper and deeper in scandals. If this has a material effect on the Church's standing, it will weaken the strength of anti-gay sentiment, given deep religious roots of that prejudice.

Go back a couple of decades and it's hard to imagine Ireland so overwhelmingly voting to liberalise its abortion/divorce laws, legalise gay marriage and abolish all blasphemy laws in a series of popular referendums, but it happened and the Catholic resistance was exposed as totally enfeebled. Things can change faster than expected, and I doubt gay people in Poland will shut up in the face of persecution.
To me it seems you understand what is happening very well. PiS did take the working class that normally belongs to the left-wing.

And Trzaskowski isn't even more tolerant for homosexuals, he is against them getting married, so what tf are we even talking about :D

You might be right about the Church thing. It still has a (very) strong position (amplified by huge support from the ruling party), but people are turning their backs on it, year after year churches get emptier and less kids attend religion classes at school. You can see literally year after year how the % are changing.
 

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Discussion Starter #52 (Edited)
To me it seems you understand what is happening very well. PiS did take the working class that normally belongs to the left-wing.

And Trzaskowski isn't even more tolerant for homosexuals, he is against them getting married, so what tf are we even talking about :D

You might be right about the Church thing. It still has a (very) strong position (amplified by huge support from the ruling party), but people are turning their backs on it, year after year churches get emptier and less kids attend religion classes at school. You can see literally year after year how the % are changing.
what about rule of law and free press? do you mean to say People voted for Trzaskowski only because he is not Duda? Pretty idiotic then. We have seen how impartial your state TV is and how much judges pay attention to what the government has to say before deciding on certain cases... the opposition voters did not care about these (for me vital) issues?

@guitarra for one seems to be bothered by this, so I don't think this election was as cartoonish and random as you and @acacacacademy point out
 

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what about rule of law and free press? do you mean to say People voted for Trzaskowski only because he is not Duda? Pretty idiotic then. We have seen how impartial your state TV is and how much judges pay attention to what the government has to say before deciding on certain cases... the opposition voters did not care about these (for me vital) issues?

@guitarra for one seems to be bothered by this, so I don't think this election was as cartoonish and random as you and @acacacacademy point out
guitarra didn't even vote for Trzaskowski in the first round

Media in Poland are as free as possible, just not the national ones. Those are propaganda tools. And I am old enough to remember national media since we kicked out the Soviet Union from here. They were always propaganda tools of whoever was ruling, just that now they are the most obnoxious in the last 30 years. This is what makes many people (me included) anti-PiS. But to believe it won't swing in the other direction with the new ruling party is huge naivety. They'll fire the current team and hire their own to spin their side. Just probably without inviting some Poles from Chicago to act American and without other funny things. This will be the difference.

They'd probably also kick out disco-polo (Polish turbofolk) from the national TV. So that would also be the difference (significant for many, believe me).
 

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Discussion Starter #54
guitarra didn't even vote for Trzaskowski in the first round

Media in Poland are as free as possible, just not the national ones. Those are propaganda tools. And I am old enough to remember national media since we kicked out the Soviet Union from here. They were always propaganda tools of whoever was ruling, just that now they are the most obnoxious in the last 30 years. This is what makes many people (me included) anti-PiS. But to believe it won't swing in the other direction with the new ruling party is huge naivety. They'll fire the current team and hire their own to spin their side.
I know, I read it. Still he voted opposition in the second, and hoped the increasing authoritarianism would be slowed, if not stopped.

So what you are saying is that Polish media and judiciary will never be free. That's depressing news for the young and educated Poles.
 

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I know, I read it. Still he voted opposition in the second, and hoped the increasing authoritarianism would be slowed, if not stopped.

So what you are saying is that Polish media and judiciary will never be free. That's depressing news for the young and educated Poles.
Yeah I really don't know what will happen now. Either they'll pay attention to moods changing among the younger groups (where PiS is losing badly) and adjust, or they will not give a flying f and keep status quo, or keep grabbing more positions for themselves and their families and lovers.

Once again I need to underline this party really kept key promises for the working class during the first term. But right now there wasn't even any serious campaign, only LGBT things or who is responsible more for pedophilia - church or liberal artists. Which probably indicated they aren't planning to do anything in the second term.
 

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justice for all
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As per, Western liberals are perceiving a foreign election through the prism of their own obsessions and pet causes, without any serious regard for the broader picture in Poland. I highly doubt gay rights was the decisive issue in this election for most Polish voters, but headline coverage in the English language press rarely moves beyond that issue. It is important and would rightly have motivated people who are passionate about it, but I suspect millions of voters were more interested in questions like taxation, jobs and social welfare.

Just as there are Duda voters who are accepting of gay, lesbian and/or trans people (and people who are at least neutral rather than hostile, if not positive), there will be plenty of conservatives who voted for Trzaskowski, perhaps as a revolt against PiS or because they are more economically liberal, and doubtless for other reasons that outsiders like me know nothing about.

Don't bother pointing out that these are outliers, only amounting to small proportions of each candidate's vote share. Even if they are, it's the small numbers that are most crucial when a candidate wins by a narrow margin. Bourgeois democracies are and always have been about voting for the candidate you consider the least damaging, not for the ideal person who stands for everything you believe in.
I agree those are crucial topics that average voter is normally interested in. But the problem was they were hardly covered during the campaign at all by any of the two candidates. Instead they were talking of all those secondary subjects which were a red herring allowing them to polarise and calumniate the other party. This was probably the most bizarre campaign I ever witness in this country.
 

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To me it seems you understand what is happening very well. PiS did take the working class that normally belongs to the left-wing.

And Trzaskowski isn't even more tolerant for homosexuals, he is against them getting married, so what tf are we even talking about :D

You might be right about the Church thing. It still has a (very) strong position (amplified by huge support from the ruling party), but people are turning their backs on it, year after year churches get emptier and less kids attend religion classes at school. You can see literally year after year how the % are changing.
Ideologically they are far right catholic traditionalists but economically they are social populists - for me the worst combination ever - but sure everyone has his own preferences.
 

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As per, Western liberals are perceiving a foreign election through the prism of their own obsessions and pet causes, without any serious regard for the broader picture in Poland. I highly doubt gay rights was the decisive issue in this election for most Polish voters, but headline coverage in the English language press rarely moves beyond that issue. It is important and would rightly have motivated people who are passionate about it, but I suspect millions of voters were more interested in questions like taxation, jobs and social welfare.

Just as there are Duda voters who are accepting of gay, lesbian and/or trans people (and people who are at least neutral rather than hostile, if not positive), there will be plenty of conservatives who voted for Trzaskowski, perhaps as a revolt against PiS or because they are more economically liberal, and doubtless for other reasons that outsiders like me know nothing about.

Don't bother pointing out that these are outliers, only amounting to small proportions of each candidate's vote share. Even if they are, it's the small numbers that are most crucial when a candidate wins by a narrow margin. Bourgeois democracies are and always have been about voting for the candidate you consider the least damaging, not for the ideal person who stands for everything you believe in.
This is an interesting take, thank you. I am very disappointed that Duda won, primarily because I'm an economic (classical) liberal and think that Poland needs to go in a new direction from that perspective. I also do believe that Law and Justice is more threatening to democratic norms and practices than the opposition.

At the same time, you have a point that we in the Anglosphere tend to take an overly provincial/insular perspective on foreign elections and it's good not to have an overly simplified perspective. There's a lot more going on underneath the surface that we usually aren't aware of. It cuts both ways, as you can see from many of the comments on this board about US politics from those living elsewhere :).
 

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what about rule of law and free press? do you mean to say People voted for Trzaskowski only because he is not Duda? Pretty idiotic then. We have seen how impartial your state TV is and how much judges pay attention to what the government has to say before deciding on certain cases... the opposition voters did not care about these (for me vital) issues?

@guitarra for one seems to be bothered by this, so I don't think this election was as cartoonish and random as you and @acacacacademy point out
guitarra didn't even vote for Trzaskowski in the first round

Media in Poland are as free as possible, just not the national ones. Those are propaganda tools. And I am old enough to remember national media since we kicked out the Soviet Union from here. They were always propaganda tools of whoever was ruling, just that now they are the most obnoxious in the last 30 years. This is what makes many people (me included) anti-PiS. But to believe it won't swing in the other direction with the new ruling party is huge naivety. They'll fire the current team and hire their own to spin their side. Just probably without inviting some Poles from Chicago to act American and without other funny things. This will be the difference.

They'd probably also kick out disco-polo (Polish turbofolk) from the national TV. So that would also be the difference (significant for many, believe me).
Yeah, I voted for Holownia in the 1st round, then for Trzaskowski in the 2nd who was the lesser evil choice for me - I am part of this group who can't stand PiS (close to 50% I believe) but I'm not a fan of PO either who are as corrupt if not more but at least they are a guarantee we'll not drift towards the far-right autocracy which for me is the biggest scare now. We need a major change on our political scene, a new opening.
As for the public TV - to be fair one of Trzaskowski's postulates was to totally reform/ depoliticise it including closing the public informative channel (TVP Info) which is the main propaganda tool currently in the hands of PiS.
 
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