Compact archive January 23, 2008

Svejnar attacks Klaus in His book

Both the Presidential candidates in the Czech Republic, Vaclav Klaus and Jan Svejnar, released books before the elections.

Svejnar wanted to get the book published as fast as possible, however because of publisher’s problem it won’t be published until Friday. But we already know the basis of Svejnar’s message – it is Klaus’ fault the Czech Republic got into reccession in 1990’s.

Svejnar labeled Klaus as the direct contravener for bad salary situation in the CR: “due to Klaus’ failure the salaries are every year 10-20% lower than should be.”

Klaus, in his book, contrasts ‘Svejnar’s’ data with ‘his’, as according to him the reforms in 1992-96, during his prime minister secretaryship, increased salaries by 38%.

Klaus in his book focuses primarily on past economics, Svejnar also focuse on his vision of future development. This is also criticized by Svejnar – according to him Klaus belongs to the past.


ONCE song Falling Slowly got Oscar Nomination

The songster Marketa Irglova and Singer Glen Hansard can be happy; their effors and emotions they put into the low-budget movie ONCE got hearts of millions. Combination of tenderness and hope expressed in the song Falling Slowly brought them Oscar nomination.

Once is a 2006 Irish musical film written and directed by John Carney. Set in Dublin, it stars musicians Glen Hansard (of popular Irish rock band The Frames) and Markéta Irglová, a fictional Czech emigrant, as struggling musicians. Falling Slowly already got the prize of the American National Society of Film Critics, for the best original film song.

Falling slowly lyrics

I don’t know you
But I want you
All the more for that
Words fall through me
And always fool me
And I can’t react
And games that never amount
To more than they’re meant
Will play themselves out

Take this sinking boat and point it home
We’ve still got time
Raise your hopeful voice you have a choice
You’ve made it now

Falling slowly, eyes that know me
And I can’t go back
Moods that take me and erase me
And I’m painted black
You have suffered enough
And warred with yourself
It’s time that you won

Take this sinking boat and point it home
We’ve still got time
Raise your hopeful voice you have a choice
You’ve made it now

Take this sinking boat and point it home
We’ve still got time
Raise your hopeful voice you have a choice
You’ve made it now
Falling slowly sing your melody
I’ll sing along

American Radar in Czech Republic: debates coming to end in weeks

illustration photo Yesterday, the Pentagon expressed hopes, that they could publish the agreement between them and the Czech Republic in the next few weeks.

The agency AFP brought this news with reference to the speaker of the American ministry of defence. He announced: “We are going to the final stage of negotiations. We hope we will be able to inform about the results in few weeks.” Which, if kept, will be much sooner than negotiations about the rocket base in Poland.

From the reaction of the Czech Ministry of defence and Ministry of foreign affairs it is obvious they don’t have any term for finishing the negotiations, but they put efforts to the content of the document, so it would be profitable for the Czech side.


Prague underground: probably back to turnstile

a turnstile Experts support the idea of coming back to turnstiles. There used to be until 1980’s, now it works on the basis of trust- the passengers buy a ticket, and validate it at the validating machines before entering the metro. If a passenger has or hasn’t a ticket is controlled by a special unit, that can fine those who avoid paying.

This trust-based system is, according to recent studies, ineffective, as 5-10% Czech passengers regularly don’t pay in public transport. In total it makes 1,5 billion CZK (57 mil. €) loses a year.

The Prague Public Transport company published a report, stating the controllers collected over 100 mil. CZK in fines last year, and that is just a fraction of those who do the ‘black rides’ as Czechs call rides for free.


Prague Café Starbucks opened yesterday

starbucks prague The first Starbucks café opened at Prague Mala Strana (Lesser Quarter) yesterday. Now, you can get your favorite coffee in a regular or paper cup with the legendary Siren on it.

It is open for everybody, who like the American style of life, or good coffee. The prices are also American – the smallest cup of espresso for 45 czk, regular coffee is 80 czk, which is about 4$. (the usual price of a standard coffee in the Czech Republic is 20-30 czk)

The next Starbucks is going to be opened in February in Prague Palladium. Starbucks company is probably going to focus solely on Prague.

The Czech Republic is the first country in the Middle Europe to have Starbucks. Poland should be next during this year. The company has enterprises in Romania and Russia already. Hungary should come after Poland.