21.01.21 NEWS ... Liberal Estonia is back - but lessons have been learned along the way about engaging with radical right-wing populists and including them in government, writes director of the Estonian Foreign Policy Institute at the ICDS Dr Kristi Raik.
21.01.21 NEWS ... Democracy is an illusion – what matters is not the choices people make at elections or their ability to participate through referendums but the approval or veto of European parties. Jaak Madison writes about the influence of major parties over domestic counterparts following the example of the Center Party.
20.01.21 NEWS ... It would be extremely foolish to stick with the recent political line in a situation where all alternatives are preferable – whether a new coalition or extraordinary elections, Jüri Saar writes in a comment initially published in Sirp magazine.
20.01.21 NEWS ... To move toward the personal state, public sector services should be seen integrally, not by separating the state from local governments but by involving the latter. The state needs to be decentralized and e-services taken to people's doorstep, Karin Kaup Lapõnin writes.
18.01.21 NEWS ... It has been pointed out that if the government of the Center Party, Conservative People's Party (EKRE) and Isamaa constituted compelled cohabitation, the Reform-Center alliance will be a practical marriage. However, a similar understanding of values between partners still matters in a marriage.
18.01.21 NEWS ... The Riigikogu will have to ensure legal certainty and security for all families that can only be done by passing the implementing provisions of the Registered Partnership Act or through the compromise tabled by 19 MPs last week, Imre Sooäär writes.
17.01.21 NEWS ... The Reform Party and Center Party coalition covers the political spectrum in Estonia more or less as completely as a Reform-SDE-Isamaa alliance would. However, cooperation between the two largest Riigikogu parties can only be pragmatic, which is the only way to pull Estonia out of the bog it has sunk into, Rein Raud writes.
17.01.21 NEWS ... Existing and incoming leaders would do well to keep a cool head instead of gloating and passing judgment. The implementing provisions of the Registered Partnership Act will be passed sooner or later, while no one is in such a hurry to warrant doing it right away, Indrek Kiisler writes.
15.01.21 NEWS ... Although Isamaa faces the danger of staying in EKRE's shadow, the two outgoing coalition parties could divide the political landscape in a way that one takes voters from Reform and the other from Center, says political scientist Martin Mölder.
14.01.21 NEWS ... Jüri Ratas' second term as prime minister landed him in a similar situation of being surrounded on all sides experienced by his predecessor at the helm of the Center Party, Edgar Savisaar, Meelis Oidsalu finds in Vikerraadio's daily comment.
14.01.21 NEWS ... Jaak Aaviksoo asks how to meet challenges posed to democracy by globalization and the possibilities of information technology.
11.01.21 NEWS ... Donald Trump's theories about the deep state, media, climate warming and other things are alive and well also in Estonia, Raul Rebane says in Vikerraadio's daily comment.
11.01.21 NEWS ... The most responsible thing politicians could do would be to agree on a compromise that would see the marriage question put up for referendum as a bill as opposed to a matter of national significance. Failure to secure the people's support for the bill would result in the president declaring extraordinary elections.
11.01.21 NEWS ... The confrontation between the coalition and opposition has become so sharp to have resulted in direct disregard for valid legal norms. It is especially shameful it has taken place in the Riigikogu Constitutional Committee, Rait Maruste writes.
07.01.21 NEWS ... The Riigikogu coalition has led us back to a time when the word 'democracy' was not yet known in our land, writes ERR journalist Mirjam Mõttus.
07.01.21 NEWS ... Estonia's much-vaunted e-Government systems underperformed during the COVID-19 Crisis, post-doctoral researcher into digital governance Dr. Keegan McBride writes, in an opinion piece which appeared in investigative weekly Eesti Ekspress. Combined with constant miscommunication, Estonia's 'e' response to the pandemic became inhibited, pointing to the need for improvements, and a realistic assessment of the country's approach to e-Government.
06.01.21 NEWS ... The opposition is behaving just like a Kremlin troll factory the aim of which is to attack its adversary, influence public opinion and render its institutions unworkable. Only this time, the sights have been set on our own country and its people's right to decide matters of the state, Henn Põlluaas writes.
06.01.21 NEWS ... Boris Johnson's team is celebrating the agreement giving British goods customs- and quota-free access to the EU market. However, customs and quotas are trade restraints of the past. There is an uncountable number of new restrictions today overcoming which will be a major challenge, former European Commission Vice President Siim Kallas writes.
31.12.20 NEWS ... President Kersti Kaljulaid said "no one really is alone, and we have needed each other's support as never before" in her traditional end of year speech and added that, even though this year has been difficult, there is hope for 2021.
21.12.20 NEWS ... The first general elections of the 2020s will very likely produce a coalition of the Conservative People's Party (EKRE) and the Reform Party that will potentially stay in power for a long time. That will be the strongest legacy of 2010, Rainer Kattel writes in a comment originally published in Vikerkaar.
20.12.20 NEWS ... The year 2020 could be described as lacking substantial debates. Future-oriented and meaningful public debate in terms of policy choices is becoming increasingly rare, which was especially evident this year, Tõnis Saarts finds in Vikerraadio's daily comment.
15.12.20 NEWS ... Because the coronavirus is widespread in Estonia and Europe, the number of infected people will rather grow than start to fall in the near future. A noticeable drop in the number of infected people will only appear once inoculation has started, Irja Lutsar writes in her COVID-19 overview.
15.12.20 NEWS ... I no longer understand the point of recent coronavirus measures, while coronavirus restrictions work the better or are observed the more diligently, the clearer they are, journalist Toomas Sildam writes in his weekly comment.
13.12.20 NEWS ... Important fields where innovation yields a competitive edge and helps ensure subsistence are energy, food production and information technology. Estonia needs to focus its activities, Züleyxa Izmailova writes.
13.12.20 NEWS ... The spread of COVID-19 has taken on epidemic proportions in Estonia and the virus can be picked up anywhere. The danger is made worse by the fact that 40 percent of those who know or suspect they have had contact with a carrier change nothing about their behavior, becoming a source of danger for many others, members of the University of Tartu Covid research team Ruth Kalda, Mikk Jürisson and Krista Fischer write.
10.12.20 NEWS ... Those who amplify social conflict during an epochal crisis should give the concept of statesman a wide berth in the future, Jaanus Karilaid (Center) writes.
09.12.20 NEWS ... Fear is the greatest pandemic, the most contagious virus in the world. It creates anxiety, weakens the immune system and hampers common sense. We need to rise above the constraints of our fears and find courage to make decisions with love, Imre Sooäär said in a speech before taking his Riigikogu oath of office.
09.12.20 NEWS ... Former social affairs minister, MP Jevgeni Ossinovski (SDE) characterizes the Estonian government's handling of the second wave of the COVID-19 crisis as chaotic procrastination and a total failure.
06.12.20 NEWS ... The government's COVID-19 crisis decision-making process is too opaque, Indrek Kiisler finds in Vikerraadio's daily comment, adding that had people a clear idea of forecasts by scientists and hospitals, they would be more likely to take warnings seriously.
04.12.20 NEWS ... The €340 million provided to Ida-Viru County through the European Union's Fair Transition Fund is not nearly enough to offset the damages caused by climate policy to the region. Moreover, the money needs to be used as efficiently as possible while avoiding the remaining oil shale industry being overloaded, regional daily Põhjarannik editor-in-chief Erik Gamzejev, says.
04.12.20 NEWS ... Following the example of Rakvere, all Estonian settlements could have clearly politically defined public Christmas trees, Kaupo Meiel finds in Vikerraadio's daily comment.
03.12.20 NEWS ... The rise in popularity for Estonia 200 is based on clear value stances, as well as setbacks delivered to radical populism in Estonia and the world, member of the board of Estonia 200 Lauri Hussar writes.
02.12.20 NEWS ... Lavly Perling voicing support for the Parempoolsed (Right-wingers) has been followed by a series of baffling reactions buy politicians, officials and lawyers – enough to beg the question of whether a person who has worked as a prosecutor needs to go to ground before they can have a say in Estonian politics, Parempoolsed member Tõnis Kons asks.
30.11.20 NEWS ... Ideas of participants of a recent anti-mask protest are worth listening to as they hide clues in terms of why a part of people believe misinformation "from the internet" or why some only join because they are tired of restrictions, Marju Himma finds in Vikerraadio's daily comment.
30.11.20 NEWS ... While things are clear enough when it comes to the outspoken supporters and opponents of the planned referendum to define marriage, politics is also a game of half-tones in which context Center Party and Isamaa leaders Jüri Ratas and Helir-Valdor Seeder now find themselves, journalist Toomas Sildam writes.
30.11.20 NEWS ... Does Estonia deserve a coalition who considers public health more important than a marriage referendum, former Chancellor of Justice and lawyer Allar Jõks asks.
29.11.20 NEWS ... Minister of Rural Affairs Arvo Aller's (EKRE) proposal to consider giving people the right to decide a part of their income tax contribution should go to a different local government finally constitutes something tangible next to so much talk of what would, could and should be done, Rait Maruste writes.
29.11.20 NEWS ... Advent greeting of President of the Riigikogu Henn Põlluaas.
29.11.20 NEWS ... People who in one way or another engage in helping others tend to burn out faster. And teachers burning out is already a serious problem today, Liina Kersna writes.
26.11.20 NEWS ... Estonia will surely get a normal and hardworking government in the future. Efforts to that end need to be daily. However, we would do well to admit it might take months or years and that the situation could get much worse before it starts getting better, Raimond Kaljulaid writes.
26.11.20 NEWS ... It might seem at first glance that face recognition could be a second authentication factor to leave us with a more secure e-voting system. However, this fails to consider the fact that the Estonian ID-card already uses two-factor authentication. The card cannot be used digitally without knowing the PIN numbers, while the latter are useless without the physical card, Kaimar Karu writes.
21.11.20 NEWS ... Joe Biden's victory has given the liberals a historic opportunity to demonstrate they have empathy for the losers of globalization and that they take several of their concerns seriously. The challenge is not an easy one, Tõnis Saarts says in Vikerraadio's daily comment.
17.11.20 NEWS ... While it is nice the government is making efforts not to shut down the country because of the coronavirus crisis, it could still lock society in a dispute over what kind of cohabitation can be referred to as marriage and who can be called a couple for the next six months, journalist Toomas Sildam writes in the weekly comment section.
17.11.20 NEWS ... Political activism and publicly supporting a party that speaks to you should not be a shameful thing but rather a normal part of being a citizen, Margot Roose writes.
11.11.20 NEWS ... Science is hitched to the buggy of different moral decisions to legitimize the latter and achieve a desired goal. That is why we can see scientific arguments wielded by all interest groups in the so-called forestry war in Estonia, Jaak Aaviksoo writes.
10.11.20 NEWS ... Minister of the Interior Mart Helme (EKRE) said that election results are falsified in favor of a particular political party in Estonia by those with access to electronic votes – members of the National Electoral Committee. As a member of the committee, I regard these allegations as serious, Olari Koppel writes.
10.11.20 NEWS ... We have a crisis – a crisis of ethics, morality and behavior, Raul Rebane says in Vikerraadio's daily comment.
10.11.20 NEWS ... Politicians who do not share the United States of America and Estonia's common understanding of democracy and care nothing for consistent efforts by the Estonian people to foster mutual relations cannot be a part of the government of the Republic of Estonia, former President Toomas Hendrik Ilves and five former prime ministers write in a joint statement.
09.11.20 NEWS ... Long-serving Reform Prime Minister Andrus Ansip once said, speaking about government in general terms, that when scandals break out, coalitions will falter. He was bang on point, writes senior ERR journalist Toomas Sildam, following the latest scandal to engulf the coalition government, which is unlikely to see the current prime minister putting aside differences, as he did in the last squabble, by sending a cake, or perhaps rather, a hamburger.
08.11.20 NEWS ... The coronavirus crisis drags back into the light the recently somewhat overlooked fact that society is made up of two parts, with the educated, wealthy and protected elite on the one side and those who need to look to their own devices to survive the coronavirus and its effects on the other, Indrek Kiisler finds in Vikerraadio's daily comment.
what happens next?
ERR News is the English-language service of Estonian Public Broadcasting, run by a fully independent editorial team.
To read up on ERR News' comments rules and to contact ERR's other services, please follow the link below.
Staff, contacts & comments