FORA Politics

Season 2009 Episode 1106

Uncommon Knowledge: Vaclav Klaus

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Uncommon Knowledge: Vaclav Klaus
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Born in Prague, Czechoslovakia, in 1941 during WW II, Vaclav Klaus grew up during the Cold War. After earning a doctorate in economics, he pursued a career in academia and at the Czechoslovak State Bank. Immediately after the Velvet Revolution of 1989, Klaus entered politics. A founder of the Civic Democratic Party, he served from 1992 to 1997 as prime minister of the Czech Republic. In 2003 he was elected president, a position to which he was reelected in 2008.In retelling his experience of living through the Velvet Revolution, the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the lifting of the Iron Curtain, Vaclav Klaus offers his views on what students today need to understand about life under communism. He also defends his opposition to the idea of a European superstate -- "I do not consider the Lisbon Treaty to be a good thing for Europe, for the freedom of Europe, or for the Czech Republic" -- and compares the ideology of environmentalism and global warming alarmism with the ideology of communism.Finally, he ponders the question of what lessons from history his grandchildren are learning.moreless
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