By Nenad Kulačin
“Any reasonable being should have felt queasy when he saw Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić, like a TV presenter in a tacky but carefully thought-out production, presenting cheap groceries from his basket to the people.
Aware of who he is addressing and why he did it, I feel a great need to put his audience under protection, although I am even more aware that I will not succeed in this. The master of manipulation that he is, Vučić constantly and almost every time he speaks, humiliates precisely those citizens who blindly trust him and who, because of the reduced price of salami, will continue to vote for him in the upcoming elections with great pleasure.
It is clear that Vučić doesn’t give a tinker’s dam about these people and that he has been abusing them for the 12th consecutive year now. Those people are like claws that are “tied” to the foundations of his government.
And that proves that this man has just as much humanity as the content of meat in the cheapest salami that he reduced the price of – the whole three percent.
I stumbled upon some dog food quite by accident. The label says that this is a food for adult, hyper active, working dogs of all breeds and sizes and that it contains as much as 30% of meat (chicken and tuna), i.e. ten times more meat than the salami promoted by the president.
What does the president want to feed us? It is better not to think about what is in the remaining 97 percent of that salami.
The Serbian President proudly showed his shopping basket between two sips of his famous and favourite Petrus wine, which costs an arm and a leg.
I’m sure that the aforementioned salami doesn’t pair well at all with Petrus, but neither Vučić eats the salami, nor do the ordinary people drink Petrus.
It is unlikely that this pairing will happen, just as it is almost impossible for people to whom this salami is meant for to realize the kind of luxury their beloved president lives in.
Vučić consciously and repeatedly is sweeping problems under the figurate carpet. The fact that the people will manage to save as much as 389.02 dinars from the reduced prices of the groceries publicly presented by the President should mask the serious problems that will emerge when prices go up yet again in the coming period.
I am referring to higher electricity and motor fuel prices, which will lead to a massive increase in the prices of many other products. It was announced that the price of the excise duty on certain goods, namely alcohol and cigars, would also increase. That’s why we will be forced to eat the cheap salami with three percent meat.
The way Vučić treats his electorate is disgusting. And this is not the first time. The way he humiliates people… No one in this country has done that, not even Slobodan Milošević, who distributed free bread in downtown Belgrade in the 1990s.
To Vučić everything is political campaigning. He didn’t do this by accident. He talked for half an hour about cheap groceries and how pensioners will receive 20,000 dinars each at the end of November and the beginning of December.
And that will happen right before the time when the opposition demands snap parliamentary and Belgrade elections to be scheduled. Unlike the opposition, which believes that it has done a phenomenal job by blowing the whistle in parliament, Vučić is heavily embezzling and abusing state resources for a campaign that, in reality, has been going on for 12 years.
All this is another proof that state institutions do not exist in Serbia. Vučić is alpha and omega and not because he is the president. Tomorrow he can be the president of the Jajinci municipality or the coach of the Red Star Basketball Club. It doesn’t matter.
He always decides on everything, including the price of a salami. I don’t know how he would have spent his time if he had gone to the market and seen the prices of tomatoes and peppers. God forbid he entered the butcher shop and there were no meat products in his shopping basket. Sorry, yes, there were, but contained only three percent of meat.
The poor minister Tomislav Momirović wanted to be the one to make the people happy. And, frankly, it would have been somehow more appropriate if he had done it, but his name will not be on the ballots, but Aleksandar Vučić’s.
There is no smart advice here. We make fun of the salami and Vučić knows very well that there are people in Serbia to whom even cheap salami means a lot. He wins that fight.
They will continue to win elections until we all get together, behave more seriously, start taking politics much more seriously and finally understand that we have to fight for freedom.
Whether we succeed in that depends only on us. When we accept that, maybe we will be able to do something. Until then, avoid consuming “Vučić’s salami”, not because of him, but because of your health.”
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