Friday, 9 April 2010

Fish In A Barrel

I had a few further thoughts about my recent (and probably still ongoing) exchange with Mr Miodrag Kreculj. When I first read his heated reply (sorry, not providing any translations here) to my counter-opinion on diaspora representatives in Serbian (and any other, really) national parliament, I felt quite stressed, feeling the metaphorical mud, slime, spit, and bile as a quite real burning sensation. Then I started composing my reply, and in the process calmed down - considerably.

A day passed, and I looked back, but also to the side, to see who exactly is Mr Kreculj. The more I looked the less there was too see. Professionally, quite successful, in my opinion. Being a director of even a minor basketball club, struggling through the minor leagues is still an achievement, and not a small one either. Honest.

So far so good. But is there more? There must be. Basketball executives are rarely experts, or even engaged, in politics. And Mr Kreculj clearly indicated in his missive that he considered himself an expert on parliamentarism in general, and diaspora in particular. Surely it wasn't for religiously following current affair and being a "member" of diaspora himself. I qualify for both, and yet was labelled an amateur by Mr Kreculj.

Luckily, Google knows a lot, and forgets little. Mr Kreculj is indeed an "expert" in the matter he writes about, this by virtue of being activity involved in Serbian diaspora political bodies. Funny how in almost a decade abroad I never realised there were bodies I could join, ney, get elected into, that represent "diaspora". Little parliaments in themselves, they seem to be bread and butter of Mr Kreculj's "expertise", and in quite a literal sense, too - for Mr Kreculj, at least, that is.

It transpires Mr Kreculj has a little more of power/wealth in his sights, and a little less of genuine care for either diaspora or spora it emanated from. Indeed, Mr Kreculj seems so obsessed by being elected (or "elected", as we will see presently) that he doesn't shy away from questionable, if not outright illegal, but certainly dishonest (some would say disgusting) actions to ensure his place in history, or rather some form of government, but more likely a place close to a pork barrel (Mr Kreculj entered himself on two separate election tickets for the same election - he did get elected on one at least, but talk about hedging your bets!).

Stop! You may now cry. Election fraud does not necessarily mean a person is also a potential pork barrel enthusiast. And you may be right, and I may be wrong, too. But I have to ask why then Mr Kreculj picks on a truly minor point of my text which indicates that diaspora deputies should not be awarded travel expenses, or at least implying that accepting them in the current state of Serbian economy is unethical at best, and immoral at worst. And not only Mr Kreculj picks on it, but gets seriously upset, even devising the silliest and potentially most expensive, and probably most tamper prone system of compensation in the process (cover travel expenses to the geographically closest border point - a cheap flight beats this hands down when all the complexities are taken into account; just read his missive, and my upcoming response and original text).

So, it seems to me that there's much more (or much less, if you want) to Mr Kreculj's campaign for diaspora seats in Serbian parliament. And once I realised that, I also realised that there can be no true discussion between us about the matter. Also that I don't really want to be associated with Mr Kreculj any more than is absolutely necessary to wipe at least some mud he so passionately flung at me.

And finally, I realised that I really am not qualified for talking to Mr Kreculj. It all started to feel too much like shooting fish in a barrel, and as much as I always liked to think of myself as a decent shot I am not cruel, and I actually dislike guns of any sort. Oh, and even if all this weren't the case Mr Kreculj is too small a fish for even an expert shot to hit - even in a barrel as small as Mr Kreculj's appears to be...

As far as I'm concerned, there is nothing more to say on this matter.

I do not intend to use this text in any reply I may devise to Mr Kreculj's expected retort next week. At least not unless he outdoes himself in the mud slinging match. Too bad he probably will never realise that he puts his mud on a boomerang. And that he is a truly poor shot.