Henry Grodsk

Today in the Trenches – dispatches from the war on free education

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009

Gazeta Wyborcza sent in the foreign legion today in a lack lustre affair which could hardly be described as a decisive victory. They found a handful of obliging foreign students to complain about Poland. One said that the backup facilities in Poland were much worse than in Portugal, “doubtless because Poland values education very lowly […]

It’s War

Wednesday, October 21st, 2009

Gazeta Wyborcza launched its latest offensive – and it is often quite offensive – on Polish lecturers on Monday, Oct 19th in the year of Our Lord 2009 with a big splash on the results of a survey which showed, among other things, that university lecturers think university lecturers are capable and clever and – […]

Baton charges and kettling: the public’s police-crowd control tactics under fire

Tuesday, October 20th, 2009

• Methods infringed civil liberties, say police • Only hardcore agitators were targeted, people insist Citizen tactics of containing thousands of police for several hours at the protests in front of Scotland Yard and using batons against police protesters were condemned yesterday as an infringement of the right of police to demonstrate. In the aftermath […]

Sport

Thursday, October 15th, 2009

Enough of scandals, I say. Let’s take a “time-out” to have a look at the “beautiful game.” From my seat last night in the pub I could just see – over the tops of the heads of the drunks and wasters at the bar – the TV screen, which was showing the Poland Slovakia match. […]

Attention to Detail (Kuczok), Initiations and France thorugh the Polish Looking Glass

Monday, October 12th, 2009

In “Żebry Adama,” (Adam’s Begging) the first story in Wojciech Kuczok’s Widmokrąg (widmo – ghost; krąg – circle; widnokrąg – horizon), a naked beggar catches hold of the narrator and forces him to divest himself of first his (Armani) suit jacket, and then his trousers. It’s not meant, of course, to be an entirely realistic […]

Heads Roll

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009

I still don’t think it’s a scandal but since it has driven everything (even Roman Polański) off the TV screens, here’s some more about the Zbig Chlebowski affair (see here), going mainly on Robert Walenciak’s article in the current Przegląd. The businessmen in question are Ryszard Sobiesiak of Casino Polonia and Golden Play and Jan […]

Spik Inglysz

Tuesday, October 6th, 2009

Interviewed in Polityka (Oct 3rd), Jacek Strzemieczny of the Civic Education Centre in Warsaw speaks in favour of sending your children to public, socially mixed schools. They prepare you better for life than “prestigious” schools where middle class children interact only with other middle class children. Asked how primary school principals detect the “good” pupils […]

Margot

Tuesday, October 6th, 2009

“Just have any old handsome face, cut in any old tattoos, pierce yourself more than the others, shave designs into your stubble, tilt your hat, carry a puppy in your arms, say controversial nonsense, swear, be more vulgar than the rest – and you’re a star.” Those are Michał Witkowski’s instructions in his latest book, […]

Scandal Watch

Saturday, October 3rd, 2009

The hawky eye of Your Man in Gdansk restlessly probes the murky undergrowth of Polish Politics to bring you the latest in scandals: A juror in some dancing show, is up on charges of bribe taking in connection with the upcoming privatisation of a publishing house. The Central Anti-Corruption Bureau tried unsuccessfully to entrap former […]

Deja Vu

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

The Lisbon Treaty vote is coming soon to Ireland, again. To re-cap: France and Holland rejected a planned European constitution so it was repackaged as a more innoccuous sounding treaty, which the Irish then rejected. Three strikes and you’re not out at all at all: the Lisbon treaty is to be voted on again by […]