Gojko Stanič

ISBN 978-961-6925-12-9 (pdf)


Why protests in Slovenia?

Why did the street protests in Slovenia (two million inhabitants) happen? What do the protesters demand? Why the political crisis? Why the economic crisis?

The participants of the Slovenian nation-wide uprising on 21st December 2012 and on 8th February 2013 demanded the replacement of all the politicians. The disgruntled citizens at the protests demand the introduction of a direct economic and political democracy.    
Until 1990 Slovenia was “The Switzerland of socialism". The employees freely managed their own private self-governing companies. They decided on the use of the total profit. Self-governing companies were rather similar to cooperatives. Around 80% of all labor force was working in self governing companies. Political parties, which came to power after the first multi-party elections in 1990, nationalized 1300 self-governing companies, where 382,000 self-managers were employed. On average only 20% of the ownership was left to the employees.
Imagine what could happen if Spanish government would have nationalized Mondragon cooperative and leave only 20% of the property rights to the members of successful cooperative.
The class of partitocracy has been controlling the state owned companies and all the public sector for twenty two years. Partitocratic class controls the majority of large companies. Based on the domination of state capitalism, corruption has become rife.
The state and financial tycoons as well as the today’s owners of former self-governing companies did not invest fresh capital into the companies, but have only drained them. Furthermore, they have already sold a lot of them and they intend to sell more. 
Since 2004 there have been numerous tycoon takeovers with which companies are being drained. Since the start of the crisis in 2008 a lot of indebted companies, mainly in the construction industry, have gone bankrupt due to the wrong state development policy and tycoon takeovers.
In 1990 around 50,000 people were unemployed in Slovenia, now there are 124,000 of them. Because hundreds of nationalized companies were destroyed, around 100.000 employees have become very young pensioners.
The partitocratic political elite, immediately after 1990, adopted regulations with which they prevented any serious political competition. For twenty-two years there have been more or less the same members of the partitocratic class governing in Slovenia.
Healthy new private companies are not yet strong enough to bear the heavy burden of public spending.
Those nationalized companies, which were taken over and controlled by the employees, are operating very well. According to the research done on 203 companies operating in Slovenia (Ljubica Knezevic Cvelbar, Matjaž Koman, Janez Prašnikar 2009 ) the very best are those, which are collectively controlled by managers, all employees and pensioners of the companies. Slovenia can become a very successful state only if controlling package of capital will be, by means of denationalization, returned back to the employees.