“I never expected to be a politician. It wasn’t my dream,” admits openly Monika Rosa, member of the liberal party Nowoczesna in the Polish parliament, in an interview with film director David Djambazov. The question of whether to leave a successful career behind to enter politics and try to change the political trajectory of one’s own country is central to the new documentary by the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom – “Politics Is for Other People”.
Through the eyes of seven extraordinary personalities, this unique documentary outlines the stories of emerging liberal movements in Central and Southeast Europe; in the region that has been known mostly for the erosion of the rule of law and a continued increase in antiliberal tendencies in recent years.
Populism, nationalism, corruption – the region only seems to know severe political problems, pointing to a crisis of democracy. Yet, over the last few years, a number of hopeful liberal parties and movements has emerged in the region that have disrupted conventional political strategies and approaches with their innovative and activist-like character. They have successfully formed a counterweight to populist governments by promoting a pluralistic, open-minded and pro-European agenda.
The documentary “Politics Is for Other People” features remarkable stories of representatives of liberal parties from Austria, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland, Romania, and Bulgaria. These representatives talk about their personal background and motivation, while exploring the reasons and objectives of their commitment as activists and leaders in their respective parties.
The documentary does not only introduce these inspiring personalities, but also explains the drivers of liberal parties in Central and Southeast Europe, their challenges, ambitions, and perspectives. United by a common focus on issues surrounding fundamental rights and freedoms, rule of law, anti-corruption, and European integration, these liberal forces develop new ideas on how to counter creeping authoritarianism and strengthen parliamentary democracy in the region.
Seven strong stories by seven strong personalities trying to answer the question of what politics means to decent people – that is at the core of the documentary “Politics Is for Other People”, which is going to celebrate its social media premiere on July, 7. Putting aside their successful careers to change the direction of political developments in their home countries, the liberal personalities provide inspiration and hope that politics can and should be done by other people, and, in fact, by all of us.
As Dan Barna, USR Chairman and Deputy Prime Minister in Romania, puts it:
“There does exist a wrong perception that regular, decent, fair people should take care of their family, their business, their children’s school, their house, their holiday, their life, whereas politics is dirty, it´s corrupt, it´s not for us. It´s for the “others”… I would like to dream that in 5 years, 10 years, somewhere in the future, people will start to understand from kindergarten, from high schools, to the rest of their lives, that it is exactly their duty and their power to be part of politics.”