|2nd President of the Czech Republic|
7 March 2003 â€“ 7 March 2013
|Prime Minister||VladimÃr Å pidla
|Preceded by||VÃ¡clav Havel|
|Succeeded by||MiloÅ¡ Zeman|
|1st Prime Minister of the Czech Republic|
1 January 1993 â€“ 2 January 1998
|Preceded by||Position established|
|Succeeded by||Josef ToÅ¡ovskÃ½|
|Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies|
17 July 1998 â€“ 20 June 2002
|Preceded by||MiloÅ¡ Zeman|
|Succeeded by||LubomÃr ZaorÃ¡lek|
|Leader of the Civic Democratic Party|
21 April 1991 â€“ 15 December 2002
|Preceded by||Position established|
|Succeeded by||Mirek TopolÃ¡nek|
|2nd Prime Minister of the Czech Republic (Federal part)|
2 July 1992 â€“ 1 January 1993
|Preceded by||Petr Pithart|
|Succeeded by||Position abolished|
|Member of Parliament for Prague|
7 June 1990 â€“ 7 March 2003
|Minister of Finance of Czechoslovakia|
10 December 1989 â€“ 2 July 1992
|Prime Minister||MariÃ¡n ÄŒalfa|
|Preceded by||Jan Stejskal|
|Succeeded by||Jan Klak|
|Born||(1941-06-19) 19 June 1941
Prague, Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia
(now Czech Republic)
|Political party||OF (1989â€“1990)
|Spouse(s)||Livia MiÅ¡tinovÃ¡ (1968â€“present)|
|Alma mater||University of Economics, Prague|
We must have the time to create strict rules so that property is not sold by Communist managers for a low price. They often get payments under the table to sell to the first bidder. This does not build public support for a market economy.
Those of us who lived under communism for most of our lives were looking toward the Western world because of its values, emphasis on democracy, individual liberties and freedom, and economic prosperity.
People like me who were engaging in brinkmanship with the party economic bosses and the open dissidents who were being arrested were pursuing a common goal in different ways.
I also helped write the five-page statement of principles that Civic Forum issued in late November. That was the first public expression of what the new government wanted to do.
I do not consider the Lisbon Treaty to be a good thing for Europe, for the freedom of Europe, or for the Czech Republic.
To talk about planning an economic system is to talk in old terms, and I find myself sometimes having to teach Westers about what the market really means.
I was paid to read Western economic texts. In a way, the regime paid for their own undermining.
The attempts to command the climate and decide about the temperature on our planet are wrong and arrogant. I wrote a book about it which was published in English under the title ‘Blue Planet in Green Shackles.’
Nevertheless, there is another threat on the horizon. I see this threat in environmentalism which is becoming a new dominant ideology, if not a religion. Its main weapon is raising the alarm and predicting the human life endangering climate change based on man-made global warming.
The events in the square, of course, made a deep impression on me and many other parents.
By the time I returned to Czechoslovakia, I had an understanding of the principles of the market.
Then in 1969, I spent the spring term at Cornell University in New York. The invasion of August 1968 had already happened, but the hardline regime took several months to crack down on dissidents.
I live in Europe and care about democracy and sovereignty of nation states there.
We served on the editorial board of a literary monthly called Face in 1968 and 1969. He was a young writer, and I was also interested in broad cultural issues. We agreed on all major issues and became friends.
Privatization of the state-owned economy is not yet on the agenda. We cannot do it immediately; my colleagues would not agree to it. But we must put all forms of ownership on an equal footing immediately and let different types of ownership compete with the state firms.
That means following a very restrictive fiscal and monetary policy which will squeeze the monopolies and cut their subsidies. On the micro level we will allow other economic agents, both domestic and foreign, to compete with them.
To pursue a so-called Third Way is foolish. We had our experience with this in the 1960s when we looked for a socialism with a human face. It did not work, and we must be explicit that we are not aiming for a more efficient version of a system that has failed.
What we want is to establish the rules of a market economy – not to plan its outcome.
It is what makes the reform process an art, not just a science. You have to develop a strategy that tells you what reform measures you should follow and in what sequence.
It is obvious that the monetary union among 17 very different European countries does not work. As an economist, I know that the Eurozone is not an optimum currency area, as defined in economic theory.
We will also allow state companies to sell shares to their workers and will pass a law allowing citizens to start companies of their own with no limits on the number of employees or on the firm’s output.
I’m absolutely convinced that the very small global warming we are experiencing is the result of natural causes. It’s a cyclical phenomenon in the history of the Earth. The role of man is very small, almost negligible.