What is alarming to you?

  • 2017-09-27
  • Linas Jegelevicius, The Baltic Times editor-in-chief



What may be alarming to you, might not worry a bit the man next to you, and vice versa.  Aurelijus Veryga, the current Minister of Health of Lithuania, says he is very alarmed by the Lithuanian population’s mental health.

Among his worries is Lithuania’s record-high suicide statistics and bullying in local schools.

Indeed, the stats is troublesome, yet a significant part of Lithuanians are very uneasy about the Farmers and Greens-led Government themselves who, some say, have overexerted themselves not only in clamping down on alcohol consumption, but also intend to push forward other questionable, daily-life affecting measures.

The author of the lines defends the stance that teetotalers are not necessarily more tenacious and physically fitter than booze. It was vividly demonstrated in a recent 5-km race between the minister and a beer-loving young performer from music industry.

Left far behind by him at the finish line, the minister played down the defeat -and the buzz surrounding the duel   -claiming he was the winner because he… felt that way.

Our interview with the minister on page 1 provides a good picture of what kind of a man steers the Health Ministry and what to expect for the country further.

Speaking of anxieties, the Baltic States, which until now get into pesky rifts over the European-gauge railway Rail Baltic, may lose some of the necessary funds for the project, especially following the withdrawal of the UK from the bloc.

Meanwhile,  Raimonds Vejonis, the Latvian president, experienced a major blow from the Latvian Parliament, Saeima, that voted down on the president’s legislative initiative to give automatic Latvian citizenship to babies born  in Latvia to the country’s non-citizens.

In Lithuania, Darius Skusevicius, the deputy Foreign minister, is concerned about the resurfacing efforts to soften the stance on Russia.

In an interview to our Australian contributor, Michael Mustillo, he states simply: soft policy just is not possible with Russia as Russia understands only hard policy.

Meanwhile, our permanent columnist Karlis Streips, of Latvia, weighs in on page 5 on the coming parliamentary election in the country next year.

The seasoned analyst says a “good gift” for the country from its electorate would be the selection of a truly modern Parliament, one with members who realise that that we are living in the 21 century with all that that entails,” concludes he.

Should the people understand it, a lot of anxieties would just fizzle out or they appear trivial and insignificant to talk about.

But, again, with interests ruling the world, what is insignificant? Thence angst rules us.