Monday, May 12, 2008

A Math Lesson

Official results of the Serbian elections haven't been released yet, but the EUphoric Democrats are already claiming total victory. Everyone's got a right to an opinion, of course - but not to their own facts.

Well, what about the facts? According to CESID, a pro-Western election monitoring NGO, the May 11 election results are as follows:

Democratic Party/G17 : 103 seats
Serbian Radical Party (SRS): 77 seats
Democratic Party of Serbia (DSS)/NS: 30 seats
Socialist Party of Serbia/PUPS: 20 seats
Liberal Democratic Party (LDP): 13 seats
SDA: (Muslim parties) 4 seats
MK (Hungarian parties): 2 seats
KAL (Presevo valley Albanians): 1 seat
Total seats in the parliament: 250

If I understand correctly, it takes 126 mandates to swear in a cabinet. Let's assume the Democrats will get the LDP on board, as well as the Hungarians, Muslims and Albanians. That's still only 123 mandates.

But if the Radicals, Socialists and the DSS make a deal... they have 127 mandates right there. A majority. A government.

Oh, I suppose it is theoretically possible for the Democrats to court the Socialists, but wait - aren't the Socialists the "hardline ultra-nationalists," the party of "the late dictator Slobodan Milosevic"? Hard to imagine the self-proclaimed postmodern democratic reformers whose wellspring of legitimacy is the coup against Milosevic in October 2000 actually contemplating any sort of cooperation with them. Anyone who can see the Socialists in the same government as LDP has got to be on some powerful hallucinogens.

Now, anything is possible, in theory. But in practice, the only way the Democrats will have won this election is if they can somehow defeat the math that says they do not have a majority to form a government.


R_M said...

True. LDP and SPS in the same governing coalition are unimaginable.

But the worrying thing is if the pro-EU coalition got the SPS on board they wouldn`t need the LDP anymore!

Infact they wouldn`t even need LSV, which won 3 seats as part of the pro-European coalition and is another party that would be an enormous obstacle to partership of Europeans and Socialists.

Yes such an alliance would go against everything the pro-Europeans purport to stand for. But it wouldn`t go against their highest principle - the hunger for power.

Gray Falcon said...

I won't go so far as to say some things are impossible, but some sure as hell don't seem likely. I may be mistaken, and we could see a DS/SPS government soon... but I don't think so.

Marko said...

Ivica Dacic in an interview with Kurir:

Vladu SRS, DSS i SPS?

- Verovatno, ali sačekajmo konačne rezultate izbora.

For the whole interview:

He also said Hague cooperation is out of the question which is a big part of Tadic's platform.

The chance of him forming government are slim to nonexistent. I didn't agree with Kostunica's decision to call elections in the first place but regardless, now we can finally have a respectable government in Serbia.

Robstar said...

You don't let maths get in the way of political spin.

Gray Falcon said...

Oh, I'm sure that the Yellows and the red-and-black "liberal" brethren will try as hard as possible to not allow facts to interfere with their "will to power."
But wishing the Moon were made of cheese doesn't make one a dairy farmer...

Cossack said...

"...Let's assume the Democrats will get the LDP on board, as well as the Hungarians, Muslims and Albanians. That's still only 123 mandates."

Nebojša, the answer seems to be obvious. Since the DS/G17 and the rest of the parties are all virtually tied at the hip to the Clinton cabal in one way or another, they are just using Hillary math. No problem. [sarcasm]

Gray Falcon said...

Well said!

Some of the rumors I hear from Belgrade are that the Socialists will join the Demoncrats (NOT a typo) and thus "rehabilitate" their image. I don't know whether to guffaw or cross myself in disbelief.

Marko said...

I think these rumours of SPS and DS together are wishful thinking. The DS are fighting for their lives right now and are desperate for anything that will keep them in power. They know that if Radicals get to power, clean out the foreign-funded NGOs, and expose some of the DS' criminal actions while in power, that DS will never rule again. They're so desperate that they're willing to court the same party that ruled during those "terrible '90s" they promised their voters would never return, whose party they have attacked for more than 10 years! It's beyond laughable and I hope and expect Socialists to see it for the pathetic attempt it is.

It's interesting that the fate of Serbia is in the hands of the Socialists again. I hope they learned from the example of their former leader Slobodan Milosevic, who did everything to please the West but it was never enough, ending with his arrest and murder. Let's hope this time, Socialists will work to repair some of the mistakes they made in the past.

At the same time, I'm hearing rumours from Serbia that suggest the opposite, that SRS-DSS-SPS are very close to forming the government, according to Glas Javnosti and Kurir. I don't know how reliable this is but after the meetings today or tomorrow with DSS, SRS, and SPS, we should know more.

Mr. R said...

They are running with this claim now... it's based on this idea that the DS and SPS are similar in that they are supposedly leftist parties and that the SPS wants to be a normal "social democratic party" and care about social justice, etc...

With G17 Plus running the economy... again? That's what would happen under the DS alliance. This claim that they have changed radically since Milosevic is nonsense. They always were against this IMF business and favoured protecting people from the ravages of "transition", avoiding it as much as possible. I know that there were problems obviously with the transition that did take place under the SPS in the 1990s and so forth, but many of these were the result of economic sanctions...

At the very least the SPS-SRS government actually tried self-financing the reconstruction of infrastructure bombed by NATO whilst G17 Plus declared that "It can't be done!", making it a reality when they took the reins of power following the 5 October putsch.

What kind of bribe is Solana offering Dacic? Is he willing to stab his voters in the back? An SPS-SRS-DSS alliance is natural, it will allow a space for less orthodox economic policy as wants the SPS. It's about time that the "losers of transition" get their government for once.

Robstar said...

I bet those rumors of socialist rehabilitation come from the same person/party who did the maths that they won.

While this all seems designed to put pressure on others to bend to Tadic's will i can't help but think this is also laying the groundwork for something more sinster if he were to lose in the way of a coup and even civil war. I know it is far fetched possibility but at the same time its easy to imagine as well.

Firstly he goes around making statements like 'I will not let Kostunica be premier again' and 'I will not let anyone take away Serbia's European future'. Secondly a coup got him to where he is now. Thirdly and correct me if i'm wrong but he was Defence Minister at one time so no doubt he friends in Military who would join his cause. The big question is would Tadic be possibly willing to tear the country apart to stay in power, my answer is sadly yes

Gray Falcon said...

Robstar, I sincerely doubt Tadic has any friends in the military, aside from a couple of generals who always like whoever's in charge. The military is probably sick and tired of being gutted, starved, humiliated and riddled with NATO agents (ostensibly "training them in democracy").
I don't know if the Yellows have the intestinal fortitude to start a civil war; I thought their defining characteristic is cowardice (i.e. refusal to confront the Empire). And surely they aren't so stupid as to believe the Empire will actually back them up; far as Washington and Brussels are concerned, if the Serbs kill each other off that's a bonus.
Call me an optimist, but I don't think Tadic would go that far. He's not so much threatening as he's squirming, and it's not disturbing, it's actually quite funny. As Julia Gorin put it the other day, "life is beautiful and God is a poet."

Robstar said...

I do hope your right. I know i would feel much better when Tadic gets kicked out of office. Even with a SRS/DSS/SPS government he would still be around to create problems. Then again the word at the moment is the SPS joining DS is a done deal although i still can't see how they would make a deal considering how opposed some of their positions are