For a long time now, I’ve been going on about the lack of respect for anyone or anything in Slovenia. Pretty much anything goes. The more primitive, the cooler.

Nevertheless, with my expectations as low as they are, people still manage to surprise me.

Right now, protests are being held in various places around the country, aimed against politics in general, against politicians who have been unable to steer the country clear of the continuously deepening crisis. The protests are spontaneous and no politician or political party dares claim them as their own. They do, however, try to pin them onto others, much to the disgust of the protesters.

Tonight, Pavel Gantar, a politician with a long career of standing up for human rights and a former President of the Parliament, President of the Zares party, twitted in reference to last year’s early parliamentary election which his party had lost:

“Protest proti političnim elitam! Mogoče so volilci leta 2011 na volitvah odslovili napačne ljudi. …samo pravim.”

(A protest against political elites! Perhaps the voters voted out the wrong people in 2011 … Just saying.)

In response, Milan Zver, a Slovenian MEP (EPP) and member od the SDS party, twitted:

@PGantar A se zato poskušate vrniti brez volitev, z demonstracijami, Pavle? Samo vprašam…:)

(Is that why you are trying to make a comeback without an election, through demonstrations, Pavle? Just asking …:) )

I retwitted and added “Maturity FTW”.

An exchange among others followed with people reacting to his tweet. Granted, some reactions were less than kind. When Mr Gantar replied that no comeback is possible without en election, Mr Zver replied in good humour:

@PGantar @drfilomena Ok, to sem želel slišati. A si opazil, kako žolčno je Al Kaida reagirala na najino komunikacijo?

(Ok, this is what I wanted to hear. Have you noticed the bitterness in the Al-Qaeda’s reaction to our conversation?)

Consider me naive, but I do somehow expect a different level of public communication from a Member of the European Parliament. While it may have been funny on some level that I am not privy to and Mr Zver was just teasing, the humour is lost on me in the light of the recent trend in the Slovenian right-wing politics (to which the SDS by some twist of the Slovenian political imaginarium belongs) to brand as left-wing extremists anyone disagreeing with their opinions.

I presume that this post will be considered another Al-Qaeda attack on an innocent politician, an exemplary democrat and, mind you, presidential candidate in the election that has just produced the new Slovenian President. Thankfully, it is not Mr Zver.  Incidentally, the man who holds a PhD in political science is right now preparing his lectures on democracy, the crisis and youth. He says the provocation from “extremists” (there goes that word again) is an added incentive for him to continue his work. Should be interesting. Well, at least he hasn’t called anyone plebs. Just yet.