Lithuania after Politics?
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The results of the Seimas elections in 2016 have revealed one of the greatest transformations in Lithuanian party system since its formation in 1992. Though there are similarities between the political processes in Lithuania, Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic, it is important to stress important differences, which enable us to speak about the unique “Lithuanian way”. First of all, the new political group, which dominates in Lithuanian political system after the elections – Lithuanian Peasants and Green Union (LPGU), not only rejected the tradition political continuum of “right-left” politics, but also does not fit into the main political cleavage in post-communist political system of Lithuania - between ex-communists and anti-communists. Secondly, the elections revealed a huge crisis of democracy based on political parties in Lithuania. The dissatisfaction with parties, as the main actors in modern liberal democracy, constantly increases. Thirdly, we can speak about the decisive victory of anti-politics in Lithuania, the marginalization of political deliberations and political competence in the governance of the state. This triumph of anti-politics in Lithuania is not the outcome of cultural tradition of anti-politics which was strong in Poland and Czechoslovakia during the 20th century (Havelka 2016), but rather a price which we have to pay for the invasion of consumptive mentality in political sphere. The main hypothesis of this article is that the triumph of anti-politics in Lithuania means the victory of “consumer” over “citizen” and it will cause the growing turmoil in political system of Lithuania.
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