Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Welcome to the new decade

From the mathematical point of view, the current decade will end on 31 December 2010, but my children or grandchildren will speak about the ten-year-long period that has just begun as of “the 2010’s”.

The new year has traditionally began with a “National Hangover Day”. It’s because each year on New Year’s Day media (mostly the radio stations) are trying to convince me that every decent Pole should suffer a severe headache, feel sick and have other symptoms of excessive drinking the night before and offer various folk methods of easing the pain resulting from a good party the day before. I’m becoming fed up with those rotten consensuses over what a decent Pole should do. You should get tanked up on New Year’s Eve, buy on New Year’s Sale, spend Christmas behind the table with your family, devouring kilograms of meat and singing carols, think president and his brother’s party are bad (I also think so, but it’s also a consensus of media with “Polityka”, “Gazeta Wyborcza” and TVN on the lead, the alternative version is that the leftist parties are commies in disguise and thus are the biggest evil), be a catholic to be a decent man, think the Martial Law was an absolute evil and cannot be justified, but the Warsaw Uprising was the most noble event in the 20th century, file a tax statement on the last day of April, etc.

The last dogmatic debate that wound me up was the one between advocates and opponents of Balcerowicz’s plan. Both groups (critics from Krytyka Polityczna, supported by Jacek Żakowski – journalist of “Polityka”, and defenders mostly from “Wyborcza”) appeared full of themselves and blind and deaf to any arguments of the opposite party. This has been a hollow discussion. Economics is a social science, what means no experiment can be repeated. We cannot say that any other strategy would do our economy better. We are unable to turn back time and turn Polish economy around once again. The critics can say it should not have been a shock therapy. I refute it with an argument that if the reforms had been implemented before 1978, the transition from the central-planned to free-market economy could have run smoothly. Later, as it was plunged onto a slippery slope and slid down, there was no easy fix.

If you think the radio hangover propaganda has thrown me off the balance, then you’re dead wrong! I felt like laughing and found the whole absurd situation very amusing. Last year for the first time since many years I didn’t feel low in the “slack period” (that’s how I dubbed the period between Christmas and New Year’s Day when everything seems to run into a standstill) and at the beginning of the new year I have an inkling of a breakthrough laying ahead, a big change about to happen this year. Even the weather can’t take away my optimism, though the long-term forecasts say the winter will be long, frosty, snowy and will give way to spring not earlier than in April. If the forecasts say so, it’s quite probable that we’ll have an early spring and a warm and sunny March, like in 2007.

A propos predicting. Last year most of my dreams were nightmares. Moreover, I dreamt my own death seven times and all those visions were puzzlingly realistic, accurate and coherent (they all had in common a feeling of acute pain in the chest which I felt also after waking up). Last year my dreams were so ridiculous that I could tell they weren’t true. In the first days of the new year I had only pleasant, even very pleasant ones ;) For some apparent reasons I felt I wasn’t awake and I asked myself if I was dreaming, but the answer was always negative, so my dreaming intuition failed my a few times in a row. Then I woke up, disillusioned. If the dreams have anything in common with the future, or anticipate it anyhow, I think I have a spot of a bother… ;)

PS. On New Year’s Day in the morning, my blood pressure was 91/53, pulse 98. Two coffees and snow clearing brought me back to life.

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