If the "values" that have surrounded Serzh Sargsyan during his three year tenure haven't changed, then there can be no changes in the country as a whole.
The president speaks about the readiness to fight against injustice, but those responsible are the ones at his side. The people have long since lost all hope. My buddy from the Artsakh War likes to say that the number one enemy of the Armenian people is hope itself. In response, I tell him that hope has disappeared; so what is the number one enemy now?
For the past two years, our prime minister has shown how he is "struggling" against the oligarchy, alleging that he has been liberalizing the economy. In reality what is missing isn't an overall program to tackle this ill but the necessary will to do so.
When the country's leaders speak about the oligarchic economy, about changing it, what results, at the very least, is doubt. Who are these oligarchs who have seized the economy in their claws and don't allow for any liberalization? Are they beings from another planet, invisible to us here in Armenia, that no names are ever mentioned?
Is it so difficult for the president and prime minister to wrest control from this handful of economic barons. With all the levers of state power at their disposal can't our government leaders achieve this? If they desired to accomplish such a thing, the people would get wind of it. Rather, all we see is the lack of results of their alleged desire.
I am not an economist nor do I have any analytical allusions. All I do is occasionally write articles that relate to this or that oligarch, their business dealings, commercial violations and corrupt practices. No, I am no economist, but I read reports about economic reforms taking place in other countries and I can suggest that our government adopt the following resolution – let the state takeover 51% of monopolized sectors for a period of ten years.
We are talking about cereals, wheat, fuel, natural gas, tobacco, alcoholic beverages, butter, vegetable oil, air transport and the airport. 51% of electrical energy production and potable water distribution must also be taken over, even if they have been granted to other companies to manage. 51% of all mining operations must also be handed over for government control – copper, molybdenum, gold, sand, tufa stone, etc.
A new ownership model must also be adopted when it comes to the mining sector. All local residents must become shareholders as well. If the oligarchs resist such changes, then the operations in question must simply be nationalized.
Naturally, this would entail the passage of new laws in the oligarchic National Assembly. Prior to this, we must do away with all MP's that are engaged in business on the side. Simultaneously, other steps must be taken – dismiss all business ministers, department heads, police brass, tax and customs officials, court bailiffs and real estate cadastre chiefs.
Then too, all business generals must be removed from the army post haste. Let them all go and conduct their cut-throat wheeling and dealing on the outside.
If the prime minister doesn't know what businesses are owned by the representatives of the above sectors, we can fill him in.
Even top-ranking members of the RA diplomatic corps serving overseas are engaged in business. Here too, we can provide the prime minister with names.
If you really are inclined to change things in Armenia, start the balling rolling with these steps.
Otherwise you guys just talk, make promises and now offer advice.
Before even thinking about garnering the support of the public, these are the steps you must take.