If anyone thought the totally batshit side of Latvian politics was also on vacation this week, they were proven wrong by the antics of former TV comedian formerly known as Viesturs Dūle. Things started out innocently enough a couple of weeks (?) ago when Dūle, the Latvian rapper Gustavo and some other dude announced they intended to start a political party called Skaistā Nākotne or “Beautiful Future”. That should have been a hint that this enterprise would quickly tilt to the gonzo side of things.
And soon it did. After what must have been a hearty breakfast of hallucinogenic mushrooms, Dūle announced that was henceforth to be called Zuarguss Klororus-Zarmass. Gustavo, who was a stage pseudonym to begin with, will henceforth be called Arstarulsmirus Arsujumfus-Tarus and the third dude - Jurgstulajstus Lajurgus-Urgurus.
Now I have read a little about ketamine-induced highs, where people apparently are propelled into a different dimension where choirs of elves appear. Or perhaps it was DMT that did this to you. Anyway, the names of our new political party founders appear to have come from the lyrics of what those elves were singing. From here on, whatever these guys do is total crank-o-rama as far as I am concern. Believe nothing they say. Oddly, just like real politics. Which may be the point of the whole, as Latvians would say, balagāns.
To be sure, what Zuarguss and his buddies are up to is nothing new. In Britain, the Monster Raving Loony Party has been a part of the comic political landscape since the 1980s. It seems to have become a small business and a means of promoting various alternative and strange musicians. Nothing wrong with that. What is worse is when there are politicians and political movements that are geniunely wackbat (my word, derived from wacko and batshit), as illustrated by this New York Times blog on The Crackpot Caucus. Perhaps the balagānšik formerly known as Viesturs Dūle should get back to exposing the real crackpots and cranks in Latvia, which I think he was trying to do in his satirical TV shows some years ago. In any case, Zuarguss has also cast a pall of unseriousness on his movement to improve education in Latvia. There are real, serious problems in Latvia that cannot be solved by yet another put-on political movement -- but at least one that signals that it is not for real. At the same time, Skaistā Nākotne it has published some programmatic material (in Latvian) that appears to take a serious, if somewhat unconventional stand on the issue of corruption (those guilty of bribe giving or taking should be fined, not jailed, etc.) Too bad little of this can be taken seriously, now that Zuarguss and Arstarulmirus have been chanting with the elves.