Reporting the noise, ignoring the signal

The first of my comments on the article Polish law under siege by ministers, warns judge by Oliver Moody in The Times, 28 April 2020.


First the quote,

Since winning the 2015 election the right-wing Law and Justice (PiS) party has targeted the courts with measures it claims are to purge corrupt judges and relics of the communist era. Although it failed to introduce a mandatory retirement age that would have forced out Ms Gersdorf and a third of the 72 other Supreme Court justices, it has taken over the panel that appoints judges and created disciplinary hearings with the power to sack or fine them.

The West is completely clueless as to what exactly happened in Eastern Europe around 1989-90 and what is happening there now. The PiS leaders are just as Communist as the people they are pretending to oppose. They come from families privileged in various ways under Communism. They are children of Communist party members, secret police functionaries, and all sorts of beneficiaries of Communist dictatorship. The same is true of other, allegedly competing, parties. They are all friends and family, they only pretend to differ.

The Supreme Court issue is completely artificial.

Communism has not collapsed. It was restructured. The control remains firmly in the same hands as earlier. Elections are fake affairs.

I am writing this as a person removed from my university job in Poznań for political reasons. I was fired in 2015. At the same time my wife Małgorzata Głuchowska was fired from her job in the State School of Music in Zielona Góra. She is a pianist. I am a physicist with an American PhD. Having studied in Poland as an undergraduate in the 1980s and then working at a Polish university up to a rank of an associate professor, I can say there is really no difference.

Change of government means nothing in Poland because it does not change anything. It is only a change of decorations.

My wife was fired on the basis of a fabricated ‘psychological opinion’. The same Communist methods, as before.

The Times, like other newspapers, is simply a clueless observer. It duly reports the noise, while completely ignoring the signal.

@LechSBorkowski

The Clueless and the Mythmakers

Book review. Comments on The Human Factor: Gorbachev, Reagan and Thatcher and the End of the Cold War by Archie Brown review by Dominic Sandbrook, March 22 2020.


Ah, the Clueless and the Mythmakers, in other words Russian and East European Centre, St Antony’s College, University of Oxford.

John Paul II was Communist collaborator.


John Lewis Gaddis is wrong. John Paul II celebrated the 26th anniversary of his pontificate on October 15, 2004 with a performance of the Red Army Choir specially invited to the Vatican for this occasion. The concert was broadcast to Italy and Russia. The last song that evening, performed as encore, was Oka, the anthem of the Polish Communist troops formed in the Soviet Union in 1943.

The views of some of the leading historians are hopelessly naive.

Communists took over full control over the Catholic church in Eastern Europe and the Vatican happily played along. There was no chance for an anticommunist priest to rise through the ranks of the church hierarchy. Just see what happened to the Hungarian Cardinal Jozsef Mindszenty. He was stripped of his cardinal title by the pope Paul VI for staunchly resisting Communist takeover of the church in Hungary. This decision has not been reversed by John Paul II.

There is also plenty of other evidence, also from everyday life, that conclusions reached in the hallways of University of Oxford or Yale University are simply wrong.


Communist ideology and its practical implementation in many countries are radically different from the western experience. Describing and interpreting it is a cognitive challenge. Looking for truth in the minutes of the Politburo meetings will not get you very far. You may just as well read Pravda.

Communism did not collapse and the Cold War has not been won by the West. If you think you have won but do not understand how it exactly happened, you are in serious trouble.

@LechSBorkowski

Organised crime at university in Poland

Hugh Tomlinson writes in The Times, February 21 2020, about cheating in Indian schools in the article Testing times for India’s school exam cheats. My comment is about falsifications at a university in Poland.


In Poland, where I was employed at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, everything, not just exam results is subject to falsification.

This has not changed since the so-called ‘fall of Communism’. The very term ‘fall of Communism’ is actually a false statement.

When two Erasmus students from Spain turned in their essays, which copied large quantities of text from the literature of the subject, I handed the matter over to a University official. About a month later I was attacked during a faculty meeting for not issuing the students’ grades. This attack was carried out in the presence of top University officials, including the rector, who was visiting the Department of Physics that day. Following the attack, the meeting was immediately closed, so that I did not have a chance to respond.

Couple of days after the meeting I received a note signed by several ‘committee’ members, who accused me of applying wrong teaching and examination methods. This was in March 2012.

On other occasions I was pressured to sign a pass grade during an exam, when a pass grade was absolutely out of the question.

Whenever I tried to follow strict and transparent rules of assigning grades, my efforts were sabotaged by both the University and students themselves. Sometimes my lecture was cancelled by the University without notification. This was a very highly organised harassment.

I was fired from the University in 2015. The letter of dismissal was signed by a person who was present during the faculty meeting in 2012. This person is now the University rector, i.e. its president.

@LechSBorkowski

Dark profile

The Times published the article Mark Zuckerberg wanted Facebook users to make ‘dark profiles’ on others by Jacqui Goddard, February 15, 2020. Around 2006 the Facebook’s owner mulled the idea of letting third persons create profiles of those who have not opened a Facebook account yet. Here are my comments.


Creating ‘dark profiles’ on others? That’s what Wikipedia is for. I was fired from my job at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, Poland, in Autumn 2015. I received the letter of dismissal on October 29. One day earlier someone unknown to me sent me an email with information that a Wikipedia page about me is being created. I objected to it but the profile has been created anyway.

In order to mask the fact that I was the targeted person, Wikipedia profiles for all faculty members of the Department of Physics of the University were created at the same time.

I neither deserve a Wikipedia page nor do I want one.

Three points:

1. Wikipedia belongs to social media.
2. Wikipedia is just as evil as Facebook.
3. The anonymity of its editors make it more akin to the Communist secret police.

@LechSBorkowski


Someone wrote “Because anyone can edit a wiki page and there are rules about living people.”

My response:

I know this mantra very well. I wrote a blog post about it. You can navigate to it via my Twitter page.

Poland is a country of an evolved Communist dictatorship. Wikipedia is a political and social tool. It is essentially a social medium and yet another tool for the exercise of power. Whoever has got the power/social power will dictate and force the narrative.

Manipulation, lies, and falsification are not seen and are not understood by people unfamiliar with the language.

The date on my dismissal letter is 23 October 2015. The Wikipedia page was created on October 28. The letter of dismissal was delivered on October 29.

At the same time my wife Małgorzata Głuchowska, who is a pianist, was fired from her job in the State School of Music for political reasons. The state-run Occupational Health Service issued a false document stating that due to some unspecified delusions my wife cannot work as a piano teacher.

We were fired for political reasons after decades of harassment and bullying. We wrote many letters to the top officials and distributed our statements critical of the authorities. You can find them on our website. Some of them are also available on Researchgate.

It is an extreme naivete to claim that Wikipedia is self-regulating.

@LechSBorkowski


On May 22 2013, Mark Zuckerberg met with Michał Boni, Polish Minister of Administrative Affairs and Digitisation. The headline in the computer news service zdnet.com announced “Facebook’s Zuckerberg arranges one-day holiday to discuss privacy in Poland”

On November 24 2018 The Times reported that “Zuckerberg refuses to talk to MPs about fake news”.

I find it very telling that Zuckerberg went out of his way to meet Boni in Warsaw, but declined to meet British MPs.

@LechSBorkowski


Creating profiles of other people may be called ‘identity management’. Identity management and control is at the heart of every oppressive regime, typically a task of secret police.

@LechSBorkowski

Wikipedia, perfect tool for evolved Communist dictatorship

Wikipedia operates differently in different languages. There is a cultural, political, and historical context involved. Poland is a country of an evolved Communist dictatorship. Wikipedia’s Polish content is a reflection of that. Wikipedia article about me was created not because I am a public and notable figure. It was created because I was being fired for political reasons after decades of harassment. Simultaneously, my wife was being fired from another state institution, the State School of Music in Zielona Góra, also for political reasons.

The people who fired me knew that I could write about the department, university, and its people. This could show up in Google searches. The creation of Wikipedia articles for all the faculty members of the department was an exercise in prevention. This is not normal Wikipedia practice. Being a faculty member and having a habilitation does not imply you are a notable person. Thousands of distinguished scientists all over the world do not have a Wikipedia article.

The article about me falsified the fact of my dismissal and for a couple of years falsely showed that I continued to be employed at the university. You can manipulate and control information about a person in different ways. Wikipedia is an excellent tool for that purpose.

The practice of the Polish Wikipedia is different from its English counterpart. I mentioned the page of the Department of Physics, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan, article which looks like a duplicate of the institutional web page. English articles are not written that way. There is no need to duplicate institutional web pages. There is no added value in it. Also, scientists often have profiles in platforms such as Researchgate, ORCID, in addition to their own web pages.

Due to the way Internet search engines operate, Wikipedia shows up at the top of a typical internet search, implying some kind of high authority. This is, however, a false authority, because of the manipulation, falsification and distortion.

Wikipedia is a political and social tool. It is essentially a social medium and yet another tool for the exercise of power.

In Poland, the same people who fired me and my wife from our jobs and created the Wikipedia profile with my name, also falsified the juridical process, blocking and falsifying the investigation. We submitted evidence to the Prosecutor General of Poland and let the Prime Minister and the President of Poland know about the matter. They have remained silent, approving and protecting the action of their subordinates. This is an organized crime.

Wikipedia cannot pretend it can be only a force for good.

Concentration camp Poland

My third comment following the article Benefits boom pushes Polish populists to victory by Oliver Moody in The Times, 14 October 2019.


This is a response to those uncritically accepting the well-known widely publicized narrative.

To present a narrative, especially one contrary to the widely publicized one, it does take a little longer to experience, analyze and assess. And I and my wife have done that. We have documents and texts to show for it.

The Communist devil is in the details. The necessary condition is to think critically, ask questions, verify, interact with the authorities by e.g. writing letters etc.

I recommend reading our texts at lsborkowski.com/pol/

They are available for everyone to see.

We also have some sound recordings. At the top of my Twitter feed is currently pinned a sound clip from my visit to the Ministry of Culture in Warsaw, Center for Artistic Education, 23 October 2012. This was at the time when Donald Tusk was the Prime Minister and another former ‘dissident’ and a recent MEP Bogdan Zdrojewski was the Minister of Culture. One of the lawyers in the legal section of the Center threatened me with hurting my ‘paws’ during my attempt to make notes during the few minutes when I had access to a document produced by a representative of the Ministry.

We documented falsifications and violations of law. We also raised our voice against it.

We were both expelled from our jobs in the Autumn of 2015, my wife from the State School of Music in Zielona Góra and I from the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań for contradicting the imposed fake narrative, for using our rights theoretically declared in the constitution of 1997.

My wife, the best piano teacher in the School’s piano section, with many professional achievements, was declared to be psychologically unfit for the job. After twenty years of an impeccable and a very successful service. The authorities used against her a typical Communist method. The Communist Labor Code introduced in 1974, contains provision for compulsory health checks by the specialized branch of the health service: Occupational Health Service.

In 1996, the Minister of Health issued an ordinance allowing the functionaries of the Occupational Health Service to request unspecified and unrestricted additional health checks. The employee is not allowed to continue in his/her current occupation, unless he or she shows an approval from the Occupational Health Service. Much like in a concentration camp. The camp physician decides, whether you can continue to work, and therefore to live, or whether you should be fired and your life ought to be terminated.

Why such an obvious totalitarian tool escaped attention of journalists, scholars, politicians? We sent hundreds of letters to the top officials and MPs in Poland and have not received a single meaningful answer.

My wife was forced to go to a psychologist under the threat of losing her job. Everyone knows that there is no method to assess psychologically whether someone is fit for the job of a pianist and piano teacher. After two approximately 40-45 minute conversations the psychologist issued an ‘opinion’ that Malgorzata Gluchowska suffers from unspecified delusions and is unfit for the job she performed so successfully for over twenty years. Sounds like the Soviet Union, doesn’t it?

We have got sound recordings of these conversations. We have sent transcripts to the authorities. We sent it to the Prime Minister Morawiecki, the Prosecutor General Zbigniew Ziobro, to other members of the cabinet and to the MPs. You can read the transcript online. Part of recording is also available there. And the entire recording is ready to be used in the criminal proceedings against the members of the Occupational Medical Service as well as against other members of the state hierarchy. The state’s top officials protect criminals masquerading as a health service.

It is obvious that this action had the approval and protection at the very top. The participants must have been assured of impunity and of being rewarded for it, otherwise they wouldn’t have dared to undertake such a bold action.

The prosecuting authority falsified the proceedings in a typical Communist manner.

My parents were imprisoned in Communist concentration camps in the Soviet Union for their convictions and standing up against it. My father deserted from the Communist army in January 1945. He was sentenced by the NKVD War Tribunal to ten years in the camp. My mother’s family supported anti-Communist resistance in Eastern Poland, which was occupied by the Soviet Union after 1944. She was imprisoned from 1949 to 1956. That was real opposition to Communism.

The Solidarity trade union and other ‘opposition’ movements of the 1970s and the 1980s in Poland were fake.

@LechSBorkowski

Social terror in Poland

Another comment I wrote under the same article in the Telegraph as mentioned in my previous blog post.

“Lech Borkowski

After many years of bullying and all kinds of harassment of our family, my wife and I were expelled from our state jobs for political reasons in 2015. I worked as an associate professor of Physics at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan My wife Malgorzata Gluchowska is a pianist and she worked as a piano teacher in the State School of Music in Zielona Góra.

Whenever we objected to the violations of law or violations of our rights, we were threatened with the job loss either explicitly or implicitly.

Our family has been subjected to an extremely vicious campaign of bullying and harassment. Our daughter was attacked in her elementary school as well. You can read about it online at lsborkowski.com/pol/

My wife was eventually dismissed as psychologically unfit for her job despite being the best, the most successful piano teacher in the school.

These are mechanisms of social terror employed by the Communist regime. Nothing changed, except for superficial, meaningless symbolism. Crosses displayed in public places should be viewed more through the prism of the Red Army Choir’s triumphant visit to the Vatican in 2004, where they celebrated the 26th anniversary of pope John Paul’s pontificate. You can find this concert on youtube. The last song that evening was “Oka”, a hymn of the Polish Communist army organised in the Soviet Union in 1943.”

Comment to an article on bullying

The Sunday Times (London), 25 August 2019, published an article about bullying:

Fresh complaints over ‘toxic’ workplace culture at Edinburgh University vet school

This is a follow-up on an article published earlier this month Edinburgh University vet school ‘run like the Stasi’, in which Andrew Brown, a senior lecturer, was quoted to have written in his letter to the head of the University’s College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, “I have worked at several universities in my career, and never have I encountered the degree of bullying, harassment, intimidation, and discrimination that I have here. The atmosphere is utterly toxic, and everyone is scared to say anything in case it is heard and reported . . . it is like working with the East German Stasi.”

One person quoted in last Sunday’s article said “Bullying and harassment are threats to basic health and safety and cannot be tolerated.”

Here is the comment I published under the latest article.

“This is a very important problem that does not receive enough attention.

In my case, my entire family was targeted in a coordinated bullying across different institutions in Poland. I guess you can call it state-sponsored bullying. In this case the state looks less like the the word “the state” suggests and instead functions more like a criminal organisation based on threats and coercion. Losing one’s job is a powerful threat.

The law was being violated openly and nobody cared. Among many things, examination grades were falsified at the university, where I worked and at the school of music, where my wife worked. When we notified the prosecutor’s office for the first time our daughter was attacked immediately in her elementary school.

There was a whole campaign of social violence against us. It was always there but it became extremely intense in 2011 and continues to this day. We were both fired in 2015. In my wife’s case a false medical statement was fabricated claiming she could not continue in her job of a pianist and piano teacher. She was the most successful member of the 18-member piano section in her school.

The top authorities, including four prime ministers, two presidents, numerous [government] ministers and MPs have received very detailed information. Also many media received information from us but remained silent.

Bullying is a form of coercive control. It may be perpetrated not only by more powerful and privileged individuals but also by well organised groups, thus becoming a form of organised crime.

@LechSBorkowski”

There is, of course, a huge difference between the UK and Poland. In the UK, like in most western countries, bullying is usually a local affair. In Poland, bullying and harassment is highly organised and is an indispensable part of the system.

I went twice to the Poznań office of Gazeta Wyborcza, the daily with the largest circulation in Poland in 2012. I told them about my experience at the Adam Mickiewicz University. They completely ignored what I told them. This is perfectly logical, as media in Poland are part of the oppressive system.