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Old June 17th, 2010, 10:53 AM   #1621
Capt.Vimes
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Hi guys, do you have info about road conditions in the areas around Kosice, Presov, Bardejov. My cousin is traveling from Romania to Poland and when she was coming to Romania she had problems with floods in Slovakia and Hungary.
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Old June 17th, 2010, 03:13 PM   #1622
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrX View Post
The elections results are AMAZING. In the following map the red color represents the districts where the old ruling parties won, the blue color represents the regions where the new coalition parties won:
I agree they are amazing, we were waiting for it long time. But in other things I slightly disagree. For example I like this map more. The strongest party:


Quote:
Originally Posted by DrX View Post
I hope everybody can see the north-vs-south split and cities (Bratislava & Kosice; but also other regional capitals) vs. rural areas (+Zilina) split (note that Trencin should really be also red - the only reason why they're not is that their favorite totalitarian Meciar's HZDS did not make it to the parliament and so its votes aren't reflected in the map). I hope it's clear that the supporters of the old parties are concentrated in the regions into which the old government directed all the infrastructure funding (mainly D1 BA-ZA and D3 construction near Zilina, but also Trencin and Presov in the north; partially also the region between Nitra and Banska Bystrica along R1).
I think the map above explains everything.

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So, I expect the new government to change the priorities dramatically. The first steps are likely to be:
1. stopping the overpriced PPP projects 1 (Martin-Presov) and 3 (tunnel near Zilina), as well as the ex-prime-minister's private R8 to his home town, and the marginal D3 from Zilina to the north (which has low importance for Slovakia, and has no equivalent on the Polish side: they build a small expressway, clearly inferior to their highway A1 to Ostrava and 4-lane expressway to Cesky Tesin, while we plan to build our "third most important highway" D3 Zilina-PL border)
Now it seems PPP projects will be "reconsidered" not cancelled. PPP is the only way how to built D1 in close future. State budget and EU funds don't contain enough resources for it. Question only is whether there will be new PPP projects or the current ones will be modified.

R8 is not Fico's private expressway. There were plans for new first class road to replace old I/64 long before Fico. He just changed the first class road to 2x1 expressway which is almost the same price-wise. This expressway is actually much more needed that your beloved R4. Traffic volumes on I/64 are like 4 times bigger that on I/68 (road parallel to R4) with big amount of heavy trucks and the main problem is majority of the current road is within built-up area what cannot be said about I/68.

D3 is everything but useless, high traffic volumes, large share of trucks, what other reasons you need to build a motorway? Of course some sections can be built latter.

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2. starting the R4 section Kosice-Hungarian border for which everything's ready and which has been delayed mainly because the only things the old government cared about was opening the viaduct in Povazska Bystrica and other highway sections in their northern strongholds. This should be followed by an expedited preparation of R2 Kosice-Zvolen-Trenčín, as well as D1 Kosice-Michalovce and R7 (near Bratislava as well as Dunajska Streda - Nove zamky)
R4 will be unfortunately build no matter what government seize the power. Sorry, but this argument about Považská Bystrica is hilarious. Preparation of R2, R7 and D1 will just continue. I hope there won't be only preparation, but also actual construction.

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3. reorganization of the former PPP1 a PPP3 projects to be funded from the EU and the state budget.
Already answered.

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Originally Posted by DrX View Post
Overall, the main priority of the new government is to be efficient. So, I expect that they will maximize the utilization of EU funds for highway construction. And that means, among other things, that 33% of the funding will have to go to Eastern Slovakia which means that all the highway network could be finished here in the next 5-10 years (not like up to now when 0 km of highways has been finished in the Kosice region since Slovakia was established in 1993). So, a lot of good news for a more balanced development of the country.
I still fail to see what point has finishing motorways and expressway network in Eastern Slovakia without connecting it to the rest of the country. D1 form Košice to the west is much more important that D1 from Košice to the Ukrainian border. R2 from Košice to the west is much more important than R4 to Hungary and Poland.

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A bit of wishful thinking here :-) . So, let us see....
Loads of wishful thinking in your post.

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Originally Posted by czerwony_bo_szybszy View Post
if Hungarians start construction of M30 Miskolc-border as well, connection with R4 may be an alternative even for KE-BA route, however more expensive
and also an option for going from Poland to Romania, via Miskolc and Debrecen
Hungarians won't start construction of (2x2) M30 in like 10 years or more. There's no need for that. Also in Slovakia just small improvements on the current road from Košice to the border would be enough for years. But it has no point to discuss it, construction of R4 will start soon anyway.

Last edited by Qwert; June 17th, 2010 at 03:21 PM.
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Old June 17th, 2010, 03:17 PM   #1623
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Originally Posted by Capt.Vimes View Post
Hi guys, do you have info about road conditions in the areas around Kosice, Presov, Bardejov. My cousin is traveling from Romania to Poland and when she was coming to Romania she had problems with floods in Slovakia and Hungary.
There are no limitations due to the floods in Slovakia and actually I don't remember any major road closed due to the recent floods. Only the border crossing Vyšný Komárnik - Barwinek (PL) is closed for vehicles above 3.5 t, but the problem is on Polish side.
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Old June 17th, 2010, 03:25 PM   #1624
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Originally Posted by Qwert View Post
There are no limitations due to the floods in Slovakia and actually I don't remember any major road closed due to the recent floods. Only the border crossing Vyšný Komárnik - Barwinek (PL) is closed for vehicles above 3.5 t, but the problem is on Polish side.
Thanks
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Old June 17th, 2010, 04:11 PM   #1625
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Originally Posted by Capt.Vimes View Post
Thanks
As can be expected, Qwert has no idea about what's happening in Eastern Slovakia. Many sections of the road between Kosice and Miskolc have been closed last week due to the flooding, including the Milhost-Tornyosnemeti border crossing. All of them have been open since then. So, no problem.

PS: The Qwert's map is mostly right, but pretty useless (as are his arguments). Who won in individual districts bears no influence on the overall results in the proportional (as opposed to majority) election system as we have in Slovakia (one can win by getting just 1% of vote if all the other parties get 0.99%; but that doesn't mean that he has the mandate to rule).
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Old June 17th, 2010, 05:52 PM   #1626
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Originally Posted by DrX View Post
As can be expected, Qwert has no idea about what's happening in Eastern Slovakia. Many sections of the road between Kosice and Miskolc have been closed last week due to the flooding, including the Milhost-Tornyosnemeti border crossing. All of them have been open since then. So, no problem.
Do you have troubles with reading? I know many sections of road between Košice and Miskolc were closed, but those sections were AFAIK in Hungary not in Slovakia.

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Originally Posted by DrX View Post
PS: The Qwert's map is mostly right, but pretty useless (as are his arguments). Who won in individual districts bears no influence on the overall results in the proportional (as opposed to majority) election system as we have in Slovakia (one can win by getting just 1% of vote if all the other parties get 0.99%; but that doesn't mean that he has the mandate to rule).
My point was Smer has big support unfortunately almost everywhere. Its support in particular districts has nothing or very little to do with motorways. Interestingly new government has basically the same priorities concerning motorways as Smer's government - D1.

It's pretty embarrassing for you that this is everything you can reply on. You twaddle and lie and if somebody corrects you all you can say his arguments are useless.
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Old June 17th, 2010, 06:27 PM   #1627
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Yup, right ;-)

I said it many times so I'll say it again: nobody says that the construction of D1 should be halted. But, all the parties of the current government agree that infrastructure funding should be also directed to the south (and in particular in the south-east Zvolen-Kosice). So, the only question is about how big a portion of infrastructure funding will go there (during the last government it was NOTHING). The old Dzurinda's government devided funding 60% D1 : 25% R1 (Trnava-Zvolen) : 15% R2 (Zvolen-Kosice). Now R1 will be finished, but R7 has not been even started yet. So, the funding distribution of 60% D1 : 25% R2 : 15% R7 is fairly likely. And that iwill mean that the R1+R2 connection of East and West Slovakia could be finished faster than D1. Specifically, after the R1 Zvolen-Trnava(Bratislava) is finished next year, the only sections missing on this connection from Bratislava to Kosice will be:
75km R2 Zvolen-Ozdany
24km R2 Ozdany-Figa
84km R2 Tornala-Saca
that is total of 183km (compared to approximately 120 or so km currently missing on D1). But, the 183km of R2 is in an incomparably easier terrain, needs only one tunnel (Soroska) and it already now is without any big bottle-necks or big cities on the way (the only town is Zvolen and passing through there will be trouble-free once the Neresnica crossing is finished).

On the other hand, on the north the missing parts are much more difficult (at least two big tunnels, bypasses of four larger towns, difficult terrain, bad climate, problems, problems, problems; the populist governments avoided the difficult BUT IMPORTANT parts and focused on the easy ones so that they could report more finished kms... ).

So, the R2 KE-ZV could be finished really fast. Or, as a minimum, it could be improved really quickly and cheaply. If they focus on the Soroska tunnel and on building bypasses of towns along this road, the whole section could be passable at 110km/hr in a couple of years.
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Old June 17th, 2010, 10:05 PM   #1628
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And, to more accurately describe the city-vs-rural division, here's the results (winning party) by districts
(from pravda.sk). Clearly, Bratislava and (downtown) Kosice vs the strong-populist-authoritarians-loving rest of country :-).

But, as I described above, what really matters is whether the liberal-conservative coalition (blue from the first map) can win over the extreme-nationalist-leftist-populist coalition (red on the first map).
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Old June 17th, 2010, 10:20 PM   #1629
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Weird, in many countries rural areas are less leftist than major cities, in Slovakia it's the other way 'round.
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Old June 17th, 2010, 11:04 PM   #1630
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Yup, but only in a way. By american standard the "blue" coalition would count as progressive liberals (except for KDH which has conservative Christian values). and what is in slovakia described as center-left parties (Smer, HZDS) are really populist parties with very strong nationalistic and traditionalist (ie extreme right) tendencies (and electorate of old people who wish that the strong communist paternalistic rule came back); not to mention SNS which is right-wing extremist right from the beginning.

BTW, the situation is VERY similar in the Czech republic, where the center-right ODS used to have more than 50% in Prague (they got very corrupt though, so they lost a lot in the last election).

So, this structure (right-leaning cities) is partially a consequence of the Communist system. But really, at least by the US standards, what we call center-right is definitely liberal (or even social) because the left is much more extreme. E.g., the last "center-right" Slovak government of Mikulas Dzurinda made a right-wing-step of lowering the taxes: but they lowered VAT from like 24% to 19% - still more than, e.g., in Germany. Similarly, they introduced what the leftists called a "paid" health-care. But what they really did was to introduce small fees like a 1EUR fee for every drug prescription, just to curb the over-usage of drugs (we had something like the fifth-highest medical drug consumption per capita in the world). Such things are considered extremely right-wing especially for the older population in post-socialist countries. I hope this helps to understand...

PS: A fairly good description from the Economist is here http://www.economist.com/node/163812...ry_id=16381292 . The only thing I would not agree with is that they refer to Radicova's SDKU-DS as the centre-right Christian Democrats. So, a bit painful explanation: SDKU-DS were originally very liberal, called SDK = Slovak Democratic Coalition. At some point they tried to integrate the Christian Democratic Party (KDH) so they expanded their name to reflect that (they also incorporated the Democratic party DS -> so the resulting name was Slovak Democratic and Christian Union - Democratic Party; SDKU-DS). After a while, a majority of KDH left the SDKU-DS (resulting in dismissal of government in 2006) but they kept their name. And, they are again the party that is the most liberal/open-minded to be capable to lead the current coalition that includes the conservatives (KDH) as well as the strict liberals (SaS). I hope this is enough of an explanation :-)

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Old June 18th, 2010, 06:19 AM   #1631
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OT:
drx, you are wrong that KDH left SDKU-DS in 2006, they were never in SDKU, they were just part of SDK for 1998 elections because of election system they formed big coalition SDK to defeat Meciar's HZDS and they dismissed it after elections (KDH leaving SDK with few members in SDK as prime minister Dzurinda who was originally also member of KDH), SDKU is successor of SDK after dismiss, in 2002 elections was KDH separate party and they left government coalition (SDKU, SMK and ANO) few months before elections

chris, difference is in rural areas maybe because communists took property (soil) of people few dozens year ago (nationalizing?) and formed state owned agricultural syndicates and now there is only small number of individual farmers living from own soil, so they have leftist tendencies to wait for care from state instead of caring for themself on their own, because they are now mostly employees instead of employers/tradesmen (small traders) and it was similar with everything in rural area, communist just closed all small craft shops so what was once individuals who could take care of themselfes is now bunch of people who just wait for somebody to feed them

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Old June 18th, 2010, 11:21 AM   #1632
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OT:
so what was once individuals who could take care of themselfes is now bunch of people who just wait for somebody to feed them
Sure, the few of them that work in the farm syndicate, are just bunch of lazy villagers... So wrong.

No, the explanation is much more prosaic. Both in SK and CZ the countryside has substantial smaller incomes than the cities. The same goes about employement opportunities, etc. Since one of the biggest topics of elections in SK and CZ is the taxation of higher income groups we can see where the picture comes from.

The substantive tax progression that is present in The Netherlands is really unheard of in both countries.
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Old June 18th, 2010, 02:55 PM   #1633
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So, the only question is about how big a portion of infrastructure funding will go there (during the last government it was NOTHING).
Fico's government invested quite some money into preparation of R2 Zvolen - Košice. Fico's government also started construction of all missing sections of R1 Nitra - Tekovské Nemce, Žarnovica - Šášovské Podhradie, Northern bypass of Banská Bystrica (although this is rather I/66 than R1). Construction of R1 and thus also construction of southern Bratislava - Košice connection was never as massive as during Fico's government.

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The old Dzurinda's government devided funding 60% D1 : 25% R1 (Trnava-Zvolen) : 15% R2 (Zvolen-Kosice). Now R1 will be finished, but R7 has not been even started yet. So, the funding distribution of 60% D1 : 25% R2 : 15% R7 is fairly likely.
They officially divided funding this way, but I'm not sure they actually abided it. You forget one detail, it's not only D1, R2 a R7 which are necessary. Funding cannot be distributed this way, because there are also other important roads to be built.

BTW, 15 % for R7 seems to be way too much. There's only one section prepared (actually it's still not completely prepared too) and it's quite cheap only 56 million €. Not to mention it could be built as PPP project together with D4. This government can only barely start construction of other sections, maybe they will manage to start construction of Dunajská Lužná - Holice, but this still doesn't make 15%.

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And that iwill mean that the R1+R2 connection of East and West Slovakia could be finished faster than D1. Specifically, after the R1 Zvolen-Trnava(Bratislava) is finished next year, the only sections missing on this connection from Bratislava to Kosice will be:
75km R2 Zvolen-Ozdany
24km R2 Ozdany-Figa
84km R2 Tornala-Saca
that is total of 183km (compared to approximately 120 or so km currently missing on D1). But, the 183km of R2 is in an incomparably easier terrain, needs only one tunnel (Soroska) and it already now is without any big bottle-necks or big cities on the way (the only town is Zvolen and passing through there will be trouble-free once the Neresnica crossing is finished).
In theory it's possible to finish R2 sooner than D1, but it would be useless. For example out of 84 km between Tornaľa and Košice only few kilometres are really necessary until the next elections - tunnel Soroška and short adjacent roads. Instead of this useless 84 km we can build rather badly needed R2 Trenčín - Prievidza which is only 55 km, but current road is in catastrophic shape while road between Tornaľa and Košice is very good (except mountain pass Soroška).

24 km Ožďany - Figa would quite useful, but as 2x1 only of course.

75 km Zvolen - Ožďany is only partially needed. More precisely only 36 km (Zvolen East - Lovinobaňa).

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So, the R2 KE-ZV could be finished really fast. Or, as a minimum, it could be improved really quickly and cheaply. If they focus on the Soroska tunnel and on building bypasses of towns along this road, the whole section could be passable at 110km/hr in a couple of years.
Košice - Zvolen can be solved quite fast, but not as continuous 2x2 expressway. For now 2x2 is needed only between Zvolen and Lovinobaňa, other sections will be 2x1 and the rest won't be built until the capacity of the current road (which quality is very good on many sections) will be exceeded. We have much more important thing to solve than to bypass 2x1 expressway-like national road with 2x1 expressway.
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Old June 18th, 2010, 03:57 PM   #1634
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Aan: thanks for correcting me - there were too many changes to keep track of.

Qwert: I agree in principle that R2 Zvolen-Kosice has lower intensities than many other highways. But, the reason for that is exactly in that the former Meciar/Slota/Fico's governments completely ignored that region, did not plan any development there, left it without any infrastructure (while they only cared about how to build infrastructure from BA to Trencin, Zilina, Cadca, Poprad). As a consequence of this it was impossible to attract any FDI there, resulting in districts with unemployment rates of 30+% (Rimavska Sobota, Revuca...). So, logically, the intensities aren't as high as elsewhere. You wouldn't expect people on EUR200/month unemployment support to spend their days driving up and down, would you?

If the government wants to improve this situation/correct this imbalance (which is of course political - south is the region that never cared about the establishment of independent Slovakia in the first place) they have to come with a firm commitment that it's in their interest to reduce this extreme regional disparity. And, given the past, it would be logical to direct even a bit more than what is the fair share of the infrastructure funding there. But, I don't expect that to happen. 15% is probably still a very optimistic variant....

The second issue is the cost per km which is easily 5-to-10x higher for the northern highway than for the southern one (which is why PPP2 is running while PPP1/3 are not; PPP2 was expensive but still by far the cheapest of the three). So, even if the intensities in the north were double of the ones in the south, if the division of funding would be proportional to the intensities, it will mean that the southern highway's costs can be paid, while the northern one's just too expensive.

So, there are at least two reasons why R2 KE-ZV should be planned as a continuous 2-lane express way:
- creating a shorter and better (climatically/geographically) alternative for connecting East and West of Slovakia (+KE-BA)
- reducing regional disparities (which within Slovakia are the largest in the EU) and by supporting the infrastructure into the most troubled region in the country
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Old June 18th, 2010, 09:17 PM   #1635
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Sure, the few of them that work in the farm syndicate, are just bunch of lazy villagers... So wrong.

No, the explanation is much more prosaic. Both in SK and CZ the countryside has substantial smaller incomes than the cities. The same goes about employement opportunities, etc. Since one of the biggest topics of elections in SK and CZ is the taxation of higher income groups we can see where the picture comes from.

The substantive tax progression that is present in The Netherlands is really unheard of in both countries.
Surel, the explanation is much more complex. I'll start with Slovakia 'cause there's a slight difference here between SK and CZ:
In the post-socialist era it's been impossible to create a progressive modern social-democratic party here that would gain enough popular support (the failed attempts were SDL, SD, Slobodne forum). In my opinion this is the case for two reasons:
1. there's a large pool of (older) left-leaning voters who really desire the old communist-run country. These people are really attracted by national-socialist populist rhetoric. As a result, strong authoritarian parties with populist social agenda (and extremely corrupt behavior) pop up all the time (HZDS and SMER being the prime examples, but also ZRS)
2. the young progressive social-democrat leaning people are put before the choice of either voting for these populists or voting for parties that have 0 chance of getting elected (like the Slobodne forum / Free forum party of Zuzana Martinakova). Or, they decide that it's better to vote for center-right liberal democrats with which they at least have the certainty that they're not geared towards totalitarianism.

The situation in the Czech republic is different in that they did not even manage to reform their Communist party which is still strong and in the parliament (supported by the older generation).

So, I think the basic difference between the post-communist and the older democracies is that here the older generation represents the communist totalitarianism while in the older democracies it represents the conservative values. The younger generation/cities then represents an alternative to that, which in the old democracies means left-leaning attitudes, while here its often center-right liberals.
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Old June 19th, 2010, 10:37 AM   #1636
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Since this is OT topic, perhaps someone should move it to another section. Just quick reply.

I agree that the communistic history influences current socio-political setup. You are right that KSC in CZ still gets around 10 %, but it slowly dies out. In Slovakia it stopped its existence. I would also agree that HZDS was sort of similar obscure party. However I cannot agree with saying that SMER or CSSD are not modern social democrats, because they are. They might be playing more populistic note now and then, however their programme is based on the same social democratic principles as in the similar parties around europe (being this said, I am not their voter, nor member).

The idea, that being leftish meens being communist was wery well imprinted into the czechs and slovaks by the right wing parties, and serves as stigmatizing tool for them. "voting left is bad" that is the slogan (viz the clip with Madl and Issova for instance).

I agree with the last paragraph of yours. However it is not only age, but I would say primarly the income and employement opportunities that makes your vote. Since the younger generation has on average higher incomes, especially as they moved to the cities, this is another piece in the mosaic.
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Old June 21st, 2010, 05:47 PM   #1637
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Surel, I mostly agree. Except that I think SMER's willingness to govern with the right-wing extremists disqualifies it as a party of any values. Moreover, their behavior was so corrupt and explicitly anti-social with respect to regional disparities (they eliminated the previous government's rules that tried to preferably direct FDI to the economically lagging regions; they ignored infrastructure in those regions) that I really don't think you can call them social democrats. Of course, it's the "center-right" that will again have to try to correct those things.

But, back to the highways. Two articles (in Slovak) mostly confirming my posts from above:
1. most recent unemployment rate by district is shown in a map here http://ekonomika.sme.sk/c/5432323/ne...ne-klesla.html . note the red in the south-east
2. the future coalition declares one of the points in their governmental program will be to construct the "southern highway" http://hnonline.sk/slovensko/c1-4439...juzna-dialnica

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Old July 2nd, 2010, 11:59 AM   #1638
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Old July 2nd, 2010, 12:10 PM   #1639
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repost?
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Old July 2nd, 2010, 01:36 PM   #1640
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seem, feel free to post my pictures from dialnice.info, just make sure they haven't been posted before by myself
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