“All of the normal media outlets should introduce a boycott of the names and surnames of all Slovenian politicians. We describe them only by their roles: Prime Minister, Minister of Defence, leader of the parliamentary group,” a Dnevnik journalist called on his colleagues in an article, suggesting that they should also stop publishing photos, videos and drawings of politicians who are performing their duties. The author of the article believes that the air needs to be cleared and normalcy restored – and for this purpose, he proposed five measures for the re-education of the government. It seems that the media are actually pressuring the government, and not the other way around, as the former often claim.
Journalist and columnist of the leftist pamphlet Dnevnik, Ervin Hladnik Milharčič, recently wrote an article with the meaningful title: “Five Measures for the Re-Education of the Government,” in which he discussed the Slovenian Press Agency (Slovenska tiskovna agencija – hereinafter referred to as the STA), which he believes is the most decent journalistic organisation, but also the central problem of Slovenia. “STA is one of the instruments of normalcy, through which society communicates with itself. A key instrument for communication. Cannibalism is not a normal form of communication. That needs to be stopped. You do not have to invent a lot. It is enough to use the methods that have proven successful 40 years ago,” he wrote. He was, of course, targeting the current government, which is supposedly to blame for the fact that the STA has not yet concluded a contract with the Government Communication Office. We feel that at this point, it is redundant to once again repeat the fact that the STA director Bojan Veselinovič has failed to deliver the necessary business documentation in the last six months, as everyone is already talking about it.
“After the non-paper affair, the Slovenian radical left is now creating non-people with the help of mainstream media “journalists.” These are representatives of the democratically elected Slovenian government. Soon, it will be your turn. This madness needs to be stopped,” a Twitter user responded to the article. In it, journalist Milharčič explained that the air must be cleared and normalcy re-established – everyone must do what they know how to. “And the journalists know how to do a lot of things in this world. For starters, five re-educational measures are enough,” he suggested, noting that the measures do not apply to the STA, as they can publish anything – if the politicians want to see themselves, they should check the STA’s servers. An interesting remark, considering that the STA is supposed to be the most decent journalistic organisation – that is, at least objective in its writing, if not otherwise impartial. The Slovene Association of Journalists has also officially announced the start of a fundraising campaign to support the STA – their goal is to raise two million euros. On this occasion, the Dnevnik journalist Milharčič was seen in the company of the editor-in-chief of the RTV news programme, Manica Janežič Ambrožič. Who knows, perhaps he was explaining to her how to use his re-education techniques at the public television.
Five measures for the re-education of the government:
1. All of the normal media outlets should introduce a boycott of the names and surnames of all Slovenian politicians. We describe them only by their roles: Prime Minister, Minister of Defence, leader of the parliamentary group.
2. The publication of photographs, videos and drawings of politicians who are performing their duties should be abolished. Symbolic images or recordings are published instead of their images. On radio and television, their statements are read in a neutral voice by the presenter.
3. A total ban on quoting, summarising and commenting on all tweets and posts on Facebook and other eccentricities should be introduced. There should be no such thing anymore. It worked for Trump and damned if it does not work for the Slovenian government as well.
4. Journalists should write exclusively about the relevant moves of the government and the parliament, which have an impact on the functioning of the society. They are written about extensively, thoroughly, and without holding back.
5. Each article or contribution should also mention what the STA says about what happened. So we do not forget why we are doing this.
Well, if the statements of the politicians were really read in a neutral voice, that would actually be progress for the majority of our media outlets. However, the part about reporting on the moves of the current government which have an impact on the functioning of the society, is probably where things would stop – the mainstream media outlets have been very reluctant to report on the achievements of the current government for some time now, with priority given to moves that the majority media can present in a way that somehow fits their agenda. And in each article or contribution, the author should mention what the STA says about the event? The task of the STA is to objectively and impartially report the daily news – without its own comment on the matter. In practice, however, we can see that the STA often reports on the events in a biased manner, and this is then diligently summarised by most of the media outlets. Thus, the circle of deception is closed, which, of course, benefits the political option that is hungry for power.