Viche 2008 8

8, 2008

Mykola MYKHALCHENKO: Society is waiting for new political leaders

Sometimes one wants so much to think of politics indifferently! Just to forget that it exists. To forget it as absolutely simple things, uninteresting activities. Like habits which became part of our nature, for example, the habit to breathe or fall asleep when it gets dark. One wants that. But one doesnt manage to do that. That is because we trust our nature. But not politics. And we dont trust separate politicians absolutely. That is why we have to think of politics. We have to be interested in it. In the same way as defendants are interested in the possible sentence and patients in diagnosis.
But there are people who are interested in politics professionally. These are political scientists. About history, politics and Ukrainians, about us, is the talk with Mykola Mykhalchenko, the doctor of philosophical sciences, professor, member-correspondent of the NAS of Ukraine, the president of Academy of political sciences.

You are not only a political scientist-theorist but you are also the head of Allukrainian sociological service and you conduct sociological researches. Have political preferences of citizens changed recently?

What worries Ukrainians? As well as last year the sharpest problem is the price growth. That is the point of view of 70,1% of respondents. On the second place there is a low level of salaries and pensions, on the third (as well as last year) there is medical service of population. I understand why authority groups are not interested in the problem of medical service. Because they receive medical treatment abroad, in the countries of the NATO, against which they come forward. There they give education to their children, buy property and others like that.

However, the most interesting results are different: substantial changes in the gender sphere have taken place. Though, the amount of women decreases in the Verkhovna Rada, but society develops. In August, 2007 36,6% of population were ready to vote for the woman-president. Presently 60, 5%. It is interesting that in 2007 exactly women were against that a woman became the president, and considerable part of men was for that. The situation has changed now: most women agree with that a woman was the president. It means they have realized their role in public life. This is extremely important. Because our country stops being Eurasian and becomes European one where a woman can become not only the prime minister but also the president. Besides, the level of optimism is rising in the society. Over 39% of citizens dispose themselves optimistically and this is a very large per cent for our state. As there is the stereotype of Ukraine as an offended and unhappy country. And 40% of optimists are a lot, it is a turning point. There are only a little more than 20% of pessimists. So the turning point has taken place. People are glad that new political figures, who will do life better, will appear.

Moreover I would like to emphasize: the mad agitation against the NATO took place for some months. And what are the consequences? The amount of those who supports the idea of entry in the NATO has grown dramatically. In fact those changes in political consciousness have repeated, which were in the period of the conflict concerning Tuzla. Then there was the splash of hopes that we can be protected from Russia only by the NATO. And political scientists and sociologists have fixed: over 30% of population came forward for joining the NATO. Now this index is 30,8%. Some in active way, others in passive way come forward for joining the block.