Monday, July 27, 2015


Previously there was Czechoslovakia, until the “velvet divorce” of 1993, which led to the creation of two states, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. It took five years for the country to “prove itself” on the European stage, with huge debt, questions over the treatment of ethnic minorities, and a general concern about the development of democracy, holding back its aspiration to join NATO and the EU, both of which were finally achieved in 2004. “Ethnic minorities” generally means the Roma, for whom see my entry on Romania and assume that the same issues of poverty and discrimination apply.

Slovakia is too new a country to have had time to gain marks, or history to lose them (Andy Warhol's parents were technically Slovakian, in that they came from that part of Czechoslovakia, but this hardly counts; and anyway, unlike a Leonardo or a Michelangelo, who can say if this would reckon for it or against it?), but Slovakia does have one place of great significance in the world, for it is living proof that the great and noble and valiant attempt by Jimmy Wales to create a world empire of knowledge is doomed not just to failure, but to a most dangerous failure. How does Wikipedia work? By anyone who wishes posting, or editing, a page. Does it get checked and verified? Theoretically yes, but there are simply too many pages, and too much up-dating of those pages, for verification to be feasible. Who posts and edits the pages - this is the key question? For the living, it tends to be publicity and public relations companies, who are trying to sell a person, a country, a product; in the case of Slovakia it is: the government. Go to its official website and there you will find it, on the home page: "help us to write the wiki". One has to wonder how many other governments across the world are writing their own wiki pages, but with the subtlety not to publicise the fact? Frightening!

Marks for: Go to and help us decide how many marks we should be given. We are recommending 10/10

Marks against: Now who would be so foolish as to give marks against in such a situation?

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