Yes, Bulgaria and an outstretched hand

Once upon a time in some village a very stingy man was drowning. A crowd gathered around willing to help. People cried to him: “Come on, give us a hand, we’ll pull you out!” But the man was so stingy that he couldn’t understand the word “give”. Even drowning he clenched his fists and cried for help. Then one of the villagers thought of calling to him: “Here, take my hand, take it and I will save you.”

This tale comes to mind naturally when we see how a small group of several indicted oligarchs behave nowadays. We’ll mention them name by name lest they should thing that we are trying to hide something: Ivo Prokopiev, Tsvetan Vassilev, Sasho Donchev, Ognyan Donev*. These shadowy bosses comprising the Capital circle have remained true to their sole credo – the money – even in times of crisis. Even for a moment could they think of a chance to give a hand, even if eventually it would save themselves. That’s the way of the world – if you have been only taking your whole life why all of a sudden would you change your habits? There are others, aren’t there, those who are giving out day and night, raise money and give help instead of you.

In case any of them has to be rescued the others have already provided what is necessary. We certainly don’t wish them ill, may the pen-pushers of Capital, who apparently read us and even quite us like classics, understand us correctly. However, colleagues, when you quote us it would be good if you stick to the realities. We wonder if we can call you “colleagues” because we know that your publisher Ivo Prokopiev pledged you, along with your desks, as a collateral for a bank loan and sends you down on a regular basis his letters with “particoloured thoughts” on the themes that are of special significance to him. Well, be that as it may.

So, when you quote Monitor, please, don’t be manipulative. We are aware that it’s hard for you – how can you cast slur on lawmaker and publisher of Telegraph Media Delyan Peevski who every day donates different sums of money for fighting coronavirus while your publishers show the white feather. They only creep out to light to ask the state to give them more money. Or, like Prokopiev, call on the pensioners to set out for the cemeteries not to be a burden to the state’s health and social systems and leave the money for him. These oligarchs are so used to asking for more that they even established a party named Yes, Bulgaria.

However, for all that, we appeal to you, the journalists of Capital, try to tell the truth, it doesn’t hurt. Thus, for instance, when you quote a commentary titled “Human life has no price” at least for the sake of appearances you could mention that in the beginning it describes the scandalous case of “donor” Ivailo Penchev who gifted BGN 222,000 for the purchase of 5 respiratory units for Alxandrovska University Hospital and then insisted that his employees should have priority in case of emergency. And, as the equipment had been already ordered, the hospital had to urgently raise funds, because it turned down the “humane’ donation.

As for the next thing we are going to say, we do not even entertain a hope that one day you will do it, because it runs counter to the goals set by your bosses. However, when you read us maybe it caught your eye that the publications of Telegraph Media always mention name by name all donors who contribute to the battle against COVID-19 because it is important that good deeds be multiplied. Do you understand – today the donor is Delyan Peevski, tomorrow - someone else.            

For instance, Ivo Prokopiev. We apologise for this last example, maybe to you it sounds utopian as you know your publisher well, don’t you?

But let’s get back to our theme – please, learn how to handle evidence. For instance, when you in Capital write that it was not clear what money Peevski has and what is its origin. Is it fair? If you don’t know that Peevski is an MP and has to annually submit a declaration to the Anti-Corruption Commission for Illegal Assets Forfeiture (ACCIAF), which is public and describes in detail his financial status, why should you call yourselves “journalists” at all? At least you know what is ACCIAF, don’t you? This is that same “nasty commission” which found serious controversies between the official earnings and real property of your publisher. This, dear colleagues, is called “dirty money”, but this proven fact escapes your attention, too. As for the other manipulations, like those with “some firms, some loans, some people said”, we don’t even bother to comment on them. Why didn’t you learn how to use the Commercial Register, we don’t know.

And there’s plenty of information in it about everything. For instance, about what businesses Prokopiev is running and how he reaches deep into our pockets every month making us pay padded electricity bills in which the majority is made up of the costs of his green energy. Nevertheless, now instead of paying in at least a handful of levs and help the heroes on the front line he prefers to hide out and count his millions. That’s it – when you are a calculator of a person you can hardly grow a human soul all of a sudden and start thinking about thy neighbor. And the soul is those 21 grams which you and publisher apparently don’t have.     

Now we leave you to read the Gospel and then reach for the favourite book of your publisher – the Criminal Code. It might come helpful someday. And, by way of conclusion, we would like to quote your Gospel – Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand: “Money will not buy you what you haven’t earned – either material or spiritual.” Meanwhile, the salvation of human lives is really beyond price and He, Who is in Heaven really sees all.

*Sopharma Trading of Ognyan Donev has donated 35,000 blister packs of quinine-based drugs and this fact was mentioned in the Telegraph Media publications. Never mind that the donation came after the government prohibited export of such drugs while in Bulgaria they are banned and pharmacies don’t sell them. Despite Donev’s “gesture”, his media still pursue the sectarian politics typical of all media of the Capital circle.

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