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  Nr. 4256 de joi, 12 iunie 2008 
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EDITORIAL
The big political cheat
President Traian Basescu has released a new concept on the market: political cheat. A colloquial phrase, it has appealed to both the outskirts and the centre. And the phrase is now developing a career in all the media. And doctor Sorin Oprescu has now given it a new spur by accusing important representatives of the political class of political cheat so that he would lose elections and fail to become a general mayor of Bucharest. So here I am writing about the political cheat myself. Are there political plots to manipulate citizens in a petty manner? To undermine their will and cheat on votes?
Any manly analysis of the political life in Romania and anywhere else shows that politics has always and everywhere meant versatile conduct, always used to get power and distribute power, with no exception at all, always meant to get the means to decide on the fate of human communities, greater or smaller. Within political parties and in between parties almost everything is subject to negotiations. I can't imagine this is what Traian Basescu means by political cheat. If I am wrong, then it is himself who is the greatest author of political cheats. Let us remember how he drove Petre Roman away from the Democrat Party to enthrone himself instead. Let us remember how he made a deal with Virgil Magureanu to unify the Democrat Party and the party of the ex chief of the Romanian Secret Service so that every side would get something. Traian Basescu grabbed Virgil Magureanu's headquarters, whereas Virgil Magureanu placed his loyal servants in the top structures of the party headed by the one who initiated the so-called condemnation of communism later on. As far as such a meaning is concerned, the making of the "Truth and Justice" Alliance was a political cheat, just as the sudden shift with Theodor Stolojan, which disregarded both parties' will. The scholarly, not to say aggressive trick Traian Basescu played right after the 2004 elections to leave the Social-Democrats without a government was also a political cheat. And there was the incredible pressure coming from judicial authorities on Adrian Nastase, so that the "Truth and Justice" Alliance would have one of their men take over the Chamber of Deputies. But such events were no political cheat, in fact. They were just plots and arrangements, more or less moral. Political parties and their leaders do such things frequently.
But what does the big cheat actually mean? It means stealing citizens' will, when citizens vote for one thing, still something comes out of the hat.
What is doctor Sorin Oprescu actually claiming, relying on evidence or on no evidence, when he is pointing to cheat? He is claiming that the PSD (Social-Democrat Party) and the PD-L (Democrat-Liberal Party) have decided to share the political power over Bucharest and thus sacrifice the city. But honestly speaking, aside from explainable political statements not at all deceitful, how could such arrangements work? What is Sorin Oprescu counting on when pointing to attempted cheat? Of course he is not relying on Traian Basescu's idea that political leaders, the PD-L ones included, initiate political cheat. He is neither relying on the public statements by Marian Vanghelie and Nicolae Ontanu, in opposition to Mircea Geoana's comments, concerning the political support in the big electoral final due in Bucharest. Although he is not overtly saying it, because it is difficult or even impossible to show evidence, Sorin Oprescu is claiming cheat is being plotted. Of course citizens will never be as submissive as party leaders wish them to be so that they would vote for what they please. But a ballot can be forged, miscounted or annulled. Those party representatives who are to observe elections from inside poll stations can do this.
But is it really so? I hope doctor Sorin Oprescu is wrong. I hope he is just hysterical because of feeling he may lose, therefore he is making a fuss. And I doubt that 'the big political cheat' is now being carried out.
Sorin ROSCA STANESCU 
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