Until now, a large number of commentators believed that PiS is a party that wants to do well, but maybe the principles they operate on are not good, maybe they can't or err, but all in all they have good intentions. I think that this is wrong thinking - says prof. Roman Kuźniar, political scientist from the University of Warsaw, diplomat, former adviser to President Bronisław Komorowski. - From the beginning it was obvious that they are dangerously leaning towards Leninist obsession with power. They did not want the normal kind of power that every government needs to convey good politics for the country or for society. They wanted a power that would allow them to remain in charge forever. This it what demolishing the foundations of a democratic state of law was needed for. They want to secure unlimited, unpunished and indefinite power by all possible means - including non-constitutional ones. These are the three attributes of the power they want, he adds. - The Banaś case (curent chairman of Supreme Chamber of Control, involved in the scandal of renting rooms for hours right after taking his office - ed. translator) perfectly reveals the nature and level of this party - no honor, no ethos, no shame. Banaś with his downfall of ethos is emblematic for them, but that's the quintessence of PiS - he emphasizes.
JUSTYNA KOĆ: Turkey and Kurds like two small children - you have to let them fight and then separate - said US President Donald Trump a few days ago. Has the American sandbox not been mistaken for international politics?
PROF. ROMAN KUŹNIAR: Most of his comments, which he shoots like fireworks, regarding the Turkish operation indicate a thorough infantilism of his thinking about the world and international relations. He also testifies to this. Anyway, this should not come as a surprise, because he quickly got used to it. This, of course, may be more difficult for us and this part of Europe to accept - mainly because in Poland most public opinion and the ruling party are enthusiastic about Trump.
THOSE WORDS COMING FROM THE MEMBER OF THE AMERICAN PRESIDENT ARE NOT ONLY STUPID, BUT ALSO DANGEROUS. LUCKILY TRUMP IS NOT THE ONLY ONE THAT CONSTITUTES TO OVERALL US VIEW ON THESE MATTERS.
As has been the case many times before, his administration, vice president and ministers are trying somehow to tone down and defend America and the world against his mistakes and the consequences of his statements. However, if you look only at his words, they look ominous to American allies, especially to countries such as Poland.
Should Poland learn lessons from the Kurdish people? This is a picture of how Trump can leave his allies at the mercy of fate?
Of course, this cannot be directly compared, but the logic is the same here: we leave our allies without trying to explain (even falsely) such behavior. Or what's even worse by giving translations that make the hair bristle, e.g. "because it doesn't pay off".
Of course, we are in a better position than Kurds, because we have our own state (which by the way is becoming weaker under the current rule in terms of its defense capabilities, but it is still a state). Today, rather, this is not how countries are attacked, this form of conflict is "out of use" for many reasons. Fortunately, Poland is not only an ally of the United States, but of the North Atlantic Alliance, where there are a number of other states, which means that our security is much higher. There are also various connections with other NATO members.
Unfortunately, it must be mentioned here that Trump has repeatedly criticized the alliance and even considered with his advisers how to lead the United States out of NATO. It's only Congress - the lower and upper house - that issued resolutions urging him to refrain from this kind of thinking. Poland should analyze all this and observe it and not believe that Trump loved Poland especially and we can count on him.
WE CAN'T COUNT ON TRUMP, MORE ON AMERICA. BUT THEREFORE, YOU NEED TO CAREFULLY, CAREFULLY SHAPE SECURITY POLICY AND SEEK SAFETY IN ALLOCATIONS AND COOPERATION THAT IS NOT LIMITED TO STATES.
Poland relies heavily on Trump, as the Polish government and president love the American president. And this policy probably seems to be favored by the public, because during recent the elections the government got another mandate for the next 4 years.
Indeed so, but this time it's much weaker. I would not call it a victory at all, since the conditions of the game were very uneven. Never in the elections since 89 has there been such unequal conditions for campaigning. The opposition "Solidarity" in spring 1989 had better conditions in this respect than today's opposition parties. At least, it was not as defamated and intimidated as compared to what as PiS did to his opponents during it's four years of ruling.
It is true that PiS got an extension of the mandate, but it is also known that it was counting on more. Kaczyński is not stupid, "only" evil (in a political sense) and understands that this mandate is weak - he lost the Senate. Despite such massive measures, from using the taxpayer's money to buy a part of the electorate in a coarse way, Kaczyński understands that there is no such support. He never really had it. It's an electoral system that gave them sole power.
IN PiS, THERE IS NO INTELLECTUAL POTENTIAL TO UNDERSTAND THE ISSUES IN THE FIELD OF INTERNATIONAL POLICY AND FOREIGN AFFAIRS. SECONDLY, I BELIEVE THAT THEY DO NOT CARE ABOUT POLAND'S INTEREST. INTERESTS OF AUTHORITIES ARE OVERARCHING TO COUNTRY INTERESTS.
Therefore, we cannot have great expectations regarding foreign policy. Moreover what has happened so far does not even qualify for the academic definition of foreign policy. Maybe there will be at least no continuation - at least not with impetus we had so far - of demolishing the Polish state and its ability to function (also in matters connected with security).
You write in the latest Newsweek that PiS is aware of the damage it is doing to Poland, and despite this awareness they are doing everything to maintain power. These are serious accusations.
From the very beginning I had no doubts about it, although until now, a large number of commentators believed that PiS is a party that wants to do well, but maybe the principles they operate on are not good, maybe they can't or err, but all in all they have good intentions.
I think that this is wrong thinking - says prof. Roman Kuźniar, political scientist from the University of Warsaw, diplomat, former adviser to President Bronisław Komorowski. - From the beginning it was obvious that they are dangerously leaning towards Leninist obsession with power. They did not want the normal kind of power that every government needs to convey good politics for the country, for society. They wanted a power that would allow them to remain in charge forever. This it what demolishing the foundations of a democratic state of law was needed for. They want to secure unlimited, unpunished and indefinite power by all possible means, including non-constitutional. These are the three attributes of the power they want, he adds. - The Banaś case (curent chairman of Supreme Chamber of Control, involved in the scandal of renting rooms for hours right after taking his office - ed. translator) perfectly reveals the nature and level of this party - no honor, no ethos, no shame. Banaś with his downfall of ethos is emblematic for them, but that's the quintessence of PiS - he emphasizes.
YOU CAN SAY THAT KACZYŃSKI REVERSED THE LENIN'S PARADIGM. WHEREAS LENIN NEEDED A FULL AUTHORITY TO BUILD A SPECIFIC SOCIAL SYSTEM, KACZYŃSKI AND HIS PARTY ARE TRYING TO BUILD A SOCIAL SYSTEM IN ORDER TO OBTAIN FULL AUTHORITY. THIS IS VERY DANGEROUS TO POLAND.
Did Marian Banaś really stand up to Kaczyński and return to the chair of the head of the Supreme Chamber of Control (Supreme Audit Office) or is this a theater for the public and everything has been staged?
The latter hypothesis seems more likely. The very case of Banaś reveals perfectly the nature and level of this party - no honor, no ethos, no shame. Banaś with his downfall of ethos is emblematic for them, but that's the quintessence of PiS. Seemingly they are trying to cancel it, but they can't because it is constitutionally irrevocable. They also want to change the constitution so that the nation cannot recall them. It is in the interest of PiS that the trustee and his person remain as the head of the Supreme Audit Office. He has a specific role to play, especially when it comes to controlling power - the Supreme Audit Office should show all iniquities or inefficiencies of power. Someone like Banaś will not properly perform this function in a state that has come under the control and in the service of one party, his party. Of course, I'm not sure if this hypothesis is correct, but taking into account PiS's cunning, I indeed focus on this variant.
What is the significance of recovering of the Senate by the opposition?
PiS still does not lay down their weapons. This is of great psychological significance, because it showed that PiS can be overcome. I do not think that it was possible in the Parliament elections - here I differ from those who thought that it was possible to win these elections. As I said before:
Given this massive scale of lies, bribery and intimidation, it was only possible to achieve a little better result without equal opportunities, but not to win.
Anyway, what we are observing at the moment in the main opposition party shows a certain immaturity. Returning to your questions - if the opposition does not start shooting at each other or kicking on the ankles (and this is likely in Polish conditions) then the Senate can play a very important role, greater than that stated in the constitution. If the Senate remains united, it will be able to stop PiS from various madness and further corruption of the state. It will also force the president to at least explain himself to the public. E.g. from signing of laws in the middle of the night without even reflecting on them.
Who should be the opposition's presidential candidate?
In my opinion, a lot of opposition's people can relatively successfully play the role of president, but not all of them can win elections with someone like Andrzej Duda. I know that what I will say can be perceived as a subjective statement, but I believe that President Komorowski did his duty very well, in spite of him not winning the election for the second time. That's why is why the ability to carry out the duties of the president, like representing the dignity of the Republic of Poland, is something very different than the ability to win the presidential election. Look at the example of Mr. Duda - I must admit that he had a very good campaign and with (what also should be noted) rather poor campaign of his opponent (Komorowski), he won the election. Not long after though - he turned out to be the president, whose littleness and dependence is breathtaking. And I am not talking only about the latest joke the President gave at AGH, but about the fact that he humiliates the dignity of Poland in more serious, constitutional situations. So these are two different things.
THE OPPOSITION SHOULD LOOK FOR A CANDIDATE WHO WILL HAVE THE ABILITY OF BEATING THE CURRENT PRESIDENT, AND LATER THE ABILITY TO PERFORM THE FUNCTION. IN THE OPPOSITION, THERE ARE MANY POLITICIANS WHO ARE MORE THAN COMPETENT FOR THIS FUNCTION. SURE BETTER THAN THE CURRENT PRESIDENT, HOWEVER not everyone has the ability to beat him.
And has Poland matured enough to have a woman president?
This is not the issue. Poland is mature in many aspects. Sometimes some media try to set us up in such a way that we have not matured for something. I don't think this is a gender issue anyway. Poles will accept both - a woman and a man - provided he or she will be good. I wish Poland the best and it indeed does not matter whether it is a woman or a man. It was said once that America was not mature enough to have a black president, then it turned out that the black candidate significantly won the election in a country that still deals with a lot f racial issues. Hillary Clinton did not become president (though it is worth noting that she got significantly more votes from Trump) not because she was a woman, but not a good candidate at that time. It is not a matter of gender or orientation that will determine it, but the candidate's political potential.
Szanowni Państwo, Drodzy Partnerzy, Przyjaciele i Współpracownicy
Jesteśmy razem już od trzydziestu lat. W tym czasie niektórym udaje się wychować całkiem samodzielnych, dorosłych ludzi! To całe pokolenie ukształtowanych jednostek, indywidualności, charakterów, mających za sobą sukcesy i porażki, wzloty i upadki. Nasze dorosłe już dziecko, Makolab, również ma za sobą niezliczone dobre i złe dni, mniejsze i większe wygrane, chwile radości i optymizmu, ale i chwile zwątpienia.
Na szczęście od samego początku istnienia Makolab ma coś, czego niektórzy inni nie mają - solidne podstawy, fundamenty, na których oparliśmy filozofię i kulturę firmy; odnośniki, które pomagają nam kształtować postawy, zdobywać nowe rynki, wdrażać przełomowe rozwiązania i - przede wszystkim - wciąż iść naprzód. Kreować trendy (zamiast jedynie za nimi podążać), otwierać okna (tam, gdzie zastajemy zamknięte drzwi), i łamać zasady (po to, by tworzyć nową i lepszą rzeczywistość).
Jak to osiągnęliśmy? Dzięki wierności trzem filarom, które jak Filary Ziemi Kena Folleta pozwoliły nam nakreślić architekturę świata takim, jakim sami chcemy go widzieć. Zbudowaliśmy Makolab na trzech filarach, tak jak on zbudował swoją epicką powieść o jakże wymownym dla nas tytule.
Dear Guests, Partners, Friends and MakoLab employees,
We have been together for thirty years! During these years some of us succeeded in raising children into quite independent adults - a whole generation of well-formed individuals with their own characters who have experienced successes, failures, highs and lows.
MakoLab, the individual we raised from child to adult, leaves behind an uncountable number of days good and bad, triumphs big and small, moments of doubt and despair, but also moments of joy and optimism.
From the very beginning of its existence, MakoLab has something that most other companies lack – firm fundamental beliefs upon which we have built our philosophy and company culture, points of reference which help us shape our attitudes, conquer new markets, implement new solutions, and – perhaps most important of all - always keep moving forward…
These beliefs help us create new trends (not just follow existing ones), open windows to places which doors are kept closed, and to break rules in order to create new, better realities.
How did we get here? It was all possible because we believe in three basic pillars, which, like in Ken Follet’s novel “Pillars of the Earth”, helped us to sketch the architecture of the world as we wanted to see it. In a similar way to Follet’s epic novel with its meaningful title, we have built MakoLab on three pillars.
Pierwszym z nich jest nieustanna innowacja i poszukiwanie.
Poszukiwanie to dla nas koncepcja o szerokim spektrum. Nie mówimy wyłącznie o badaniach i rozwoju w znaczeniu technologicznym. Poszukujemy także wtedy, gdy zastanawiamy się nad organizacją pracy, urządzeniem biura, nad wszystkim tym, co stanowi codzienność firmy.
Każdy, kto nas zna, wie, że nieustannie szukamy najlepszych rozwiązań i największej efektywności. To oczywiście nie zawsze się udaje. Czasami zapewne nie udaje się wcale, ale naszym wyróżnikiem jest niesamowita motywacja, odważne pomysły i chęć tworzenia. Spoglądamy w gwiazdy, równocześnie mocno stojąc na ziemi. Nie zatrzymujemy się. Wnikliwie analizujemy porażki – patrzymy na błędy z przeszłości, uczymy się na nich, ale wciąż idziemy do przodu.
Innowacja w MakoLab ma też wymiar dosłowny. Nie byłoby nas zapewne w największej firmie samochodowej z Francji, gdybyśmy lata temu nie wymyślili najdziwniejszego systemu CMS, jaki świat widział – systemu, który nie potrzebował Internetu, aby działać. Nie byłoby nas w bankach, jakie pomagają ludziom kupować samochody, gdybyśmy nie stworzyli wizji działania symulacji finansowych. Nie byłoby nas w jednej z najważniejszych firm samochodowych w Niemczech, gdybyśmy nie spróbowali sobie wyobrazić, co może zrobić całkiem realny pojazd mechaniczny, gdy połączymy go ze światem cyfrowym. Nie moglibyśmy tworzyć aplikacji dla lotnictwa, gdybyśmy nie proponowali innowacyjnych rozwiązań. Nie byłoby nas w wielu amerykańskich firmach, gdybyśmy nie wymyślali rozwiązań, o jakich im się nawet nie śniło. Kreatywność naszych artystów spotykała się z innowacyjnością techniczną naszych programistów w niezliczonych projektach.
Nasze podejście do innowacji widać także tam, gdzie wszyscy innowacji oczekujemy – czyli w naszej działalności R&D. Stworzyliśmy nowy rodzaj Blockchain’a. Zrobiliśmy też pierwsze kroki w kierunku Blockchain’a kwantowego. Jeden z nas zarządza największą i najważniejszą ontologią dla świata finansów, inni budują słowniki dla Komisji Europejskiej, pomagające w zapobieganiu kryzysom finansowym. To globalne sukcesy na miarę największych, międzynarodowych graczy. Dlatego tym bardziej, muszę przyznać, cieszy mnie dzisiejsza uroczystość. Mamy szansę powspominać - z autentycznym niedowierzaniem przyprawiającym o zawrót głowy - to, jak zaczynaliśmy. Te czasy, kiedy drukowaliśmy matryce do produkcji skądinąd profesjonalnych książek i czasopism na byle drukarkach, zupełnie do tego nieprzystosowanych, czy na kalce technicznej, kompletnie się do tego nie nadającej. Czasy kiedy ja, wtedy jeszcze naukowiec, pisałem programy na kartach perforowanych…
Dziś pracujemy nad sztuczną inteligencją, nad samochodami, które za chwilę będą same jeździć. Lada moment będziemy programować komputery kwantowe, które wywrócą świat do góry nogami. Makolab jest i będzie częścią tej nowej, ekscytującej rzeczywistości, bo nasza wyobraźnia i chęć eksploracji nie znają granic.
The first pillar: enduring innovation and research
For us, research is an extensive concept. We do not limit research and development to technology. “Research” includes improving the organization in every way, arranging – and rearranging – our office space and the ways we work. “Research” is everything that informs even the day-to-day existence of MakoLab.
Those who know us know that we endlessly search for the best solutions and maximum efficiency. This, of course, is not always easy to achieve. Sometimes, perhaps, we fail in this, but our strength lies in being driven, having brave ideas, and in an everlasting willingness to create. We look into the stars with our feet firm on the ground. We analyse our failures, examine past mistakes, and thus gain more knowledge and, in turn, move forward.
“Research and Innovation” in MakoLab also have a more literal meaning.
We would not have worked for many years with the largest French car manufacturer, if, long ago, we hadn’t invented the strangest CMS system the world had ever seen: a system which did not need the Internet to operate! We would not be working with banks which help people buy cars, if we had not created a vision for financial simulators at a time when no bank used them. We would not be present at one of the largest German automotive businesses, if we had not imagined what a car could do when we connected it to a grid of data. We would not make apps for connected aircraft if we did not innovate how to make them better and more efficient. We would not be working for many American companies if we could not fulfil their dreams about digital tools. In countless projects like these the creativity of our artists met – and meets – with the technical innovation of our developers.
Our approach to innovation is particularly prominent in the activity we naturally expect to be most innovative in – our R&D efforts. We have created a new kind of Blockchain. We have made the first steps toward Quantum Blockchain. One of our people manages the development of the largest and most important ontologies for the financial industry. Part of our team is building vocabularies for the European Commission with the use of Machine Learning and semantics, with the fundamental goal of preventing any future financial crisis. These global achievements would be a source of pride for the largest international players! All the more reason why I’m full of happiness this evening. We have an incredible chance to reminisce – with a bit disbelief – about our beginnings 30 years ago. The times when we made money on printing offset plates for books and newspapers using primitive printers and plain tracing paper! The years when I, still a young scientist, wrote our software on perforated cards.
Today we work on AI, on cars that will soon drive themselves. In the near future we will program quantum computers which will turn the world upside down. MakoLab is and will be part of this exciting reality because our imagination and will to explore has no limits.
Drugim ważnym dla nas filarem jest absolutne i radykalne pierwszeństwo klienta.
Od samego początku istnienia MakoLab’u rządzi nami zasada „customer sovereignty” – zwierzchność klienta nad nami. Adam Smith, tworząc podstawy kapitalizmu, pisał „the consumer is king”. Ta reguła, sprawdzona i sprawdzana nadal we wszystkich zdrowych systemach ekonomicznych, jest równie ważna w codziennym funkcjonowaniu Makolabu. Wszystko co robimy, robimy dla naszych klientów.
Tak, wiem co powiecie - to truizmy i slogany. Nieprawda. Pilnujemy tej zasady. Wierzymy w nią, choć czasem to naprawdę bardzo trudne. Powiem wam w sekrecie, że czasem mamy wątpliwości. Czasem nawet oceniamy i marudzimy - ten klient nie wie czego chce, tamten nie rozumie...Każdy kto kiedykolwiek funkcjonował w środowisku biznesowym doskonale wie o czym mówię. Ale my w Makolabie od 30 lat robimy wszystko - czasami (choć na szczęście rzadko) aż do działań na granicy opłacalności – aby nasz klient był zadowolony. Nie, nie zadowolony - zachwycony! Oczarowany! Przekonany do nas i przekonany o wartości tego, co mu dostarczyliśmy. Bo to, co dostarczamy JEST najwyższej jakości.
W zwierzchności klienta kryje się istota kapitalizmu – tego polskiego, który budowaliśmy od 1989 roku, i tego europejskiego, i światowego. Jesteśmy jego częścią choćby poprzez fakt, że 80% obrotu osiągamy zagranicą.
The second important pillar: radical customer sovereignty.
From the dawn of our existence there is a rule that has absolute importance for us – customer sovereignty – the authority of the client over us. Adam Smith, creating the foundations of capitalism, said: “The consumer is king”. That rule has proved to work in all healthy economies and is equally important to us here at MakoLab. Ultimately, everything we do focuses on our clients.
Sure, one could say, “this is simply a catchphrase”. It’s not. We believe in it wholeheartedly – even if, at times, it is very difficult. Just between you and me, I admit that we sometimes have doubts. Sometimes we are judgemental: one client doesn’t really know what he wants, another one doesn’t understand what we do… Those who have been in business long enough know these sentiments well. However, from our beginnings 30 years ago, we in MakoLab have been striving – sometimes dangerously close to the limit of profitability – for our clients’ satisfaction. Wait, did I say satisfaction? No, I meant absolute delight. We want our clients to be overwhelmingly convinced by our talents and certain about the value of our products, because what we deliver must be of the highest quality.
Customer sovereignty lies at the heart of all capitalism – be it global, European, or the Polish capitalism we have been building since 1989. We are part of that global system now, especially given that 80% of our revenue comes from abroad.
Trzeciem filarem na którym oparliśmy filozofię Makolabu jest WOLNOŚĆ.
Ja wiem, że na tego rodzaju uroczystościach wypada przytaczać spektakularne case studies, pokazywać realizacje i mówić o sukcesach. To ważne i motywujące. Ale tak naprawdę Makolab powstał na bazie konkretnej potrzeby - potrzeby wolności, którą odczuwałem dokładnie wtedy, kiedy odczuwała ją cała Polska. W czerwcu 1989 roku, którego rocznicę tak pięknie świętujemy!
Głód wolności był na początku bardzo konkretny i materialny – chodziło o wolność do godnego życia i godnego utrzymania rodziny. Z czasem ta sama potrzeba zdominowała filozofię firmy i pozwoliła jej rozwinąć skrzydła. To wszystko działo się na przestrzeni wielu lat - patrząc z perspektywy czasu właściwie dekad! W 2007 roku aktem wielkiej odwagi i głębokiej wolności była decyzja o wejściu na giełdę – pomimo tego jak niewielką byliśmy wtedy firmą. Nie istniała wówczas jednak żadna inna metoda finansowania rozwoju, która dałaby nam tyle swobody i wolności, ile chcieliśmy mieć.
W 2008 roku z kolei potrzeba wolności przełożyła się we mnie na powierzenie sterów firmy Wojtkowi – po to, abym odzyskał wolność do innowacji i poszukiwań. Właśnie wtedy zaczęliśmy odnosić sukcesy poza granicami Polski i zajęliśmy się protoplastą sztucznej inteligencji, czyli sieciami semantycznymi. Zadebiutowaliśmy w Anglii, we Francji, a wreszcie - za oceanem.
Zastanawiacie się, co nam dała ta wolność, jaka jest jej wymierna wartość? Odpowiem prostym i bardzo aktualnym przykładem; istniała niedawno wielka pokusa dla udziałowców spółki, aby sprzedać firmę. To etap decydujący dla wielu organizacji biznesowych. My jednak oceniliśmy, że taki krok odebrałby nam wolność, którą tak sobie cenimy. Zamiast tego wprowadziliśmy program akcji pracowniczych, dzięki któremu kilku z Was powiększyło grono współwłaścicieli firmy.
Praktykowanie wolności w warunkach firmowych nie jest proste. Wymaga odwagi i determinacji. Wymaga zaciskania zębów. Trudno czasami tę wolność dostrzec w organizacji mocno hierarchicznej i można powiedzieć – niedemokratycznej. Paradoksalnie jednak my rozumiemy wolność nie jako ucieczkę od czegoś, lecz jako możliwość wyboru. Nie jesteśmy “wolni od” lecz “wolni by móc”...
Czasem zdarza się, że pracownicy odchodzą. To także świetny przykład na to jak Makolab rozumie wolność. Ci, którzy nas zostawiają, podejmują świadomy wybór, ale my dbamy o to, by wszystko działo się w przyjaźni. Chcemy by każdy czuł się wolny w swoich decyzjach, jednocześnie wiedząc, że ma w nich nasze wsparcie. Staramy się rozstawać z ludźmi w taki sposób, by nie stać na drodze do ich wolności i jednocześnie umożliwiać powroty. Mamy dziś na sali wielu byłych pracowników – cieszę się, że jesteście dziś z nami i świętujecie sukces, którego sami byliście ważną częścią.
The third pillar which forms our philosophy: FREEDOM.
I know perfectly well that during ceremonies like this one it is normal - and expected - to show spectacular case studies, point out our greatest achievements and celebrate our successes. All of that is important and motivating. But… the truth is that MakoLab has been created out of a concrete need: the need for freedom. Together with all other Poles, I felt this deeply in June 1989, the year of freedom and solidarity which we celebrate this year across the country with so much joy and pride.
In the beginning, the desire for freedom was very down to earth – it was all about the freedom to live a dignified life and to provide for our families. Over time, the same desire for freedom dominated the company culture and allowed us to spread our wings.
All that happened over many years, or, to be precise, over decades. Despite the small size of our company at that time, our 2007 IPO was an act of bravery based on that deep sense of freedom. Floating this company on the stock market was the best way to finance company growth and give us even more freedom.
In 2008, it was out of that same desire for freedom that I asked Wojtek to become the new guardian of the MakoLab ‘child’. At the time I was seeking freedom to innovate and to develop new ideas. Shortly after, we started to work on larger projects outside Poland and initiated works on the precursor of Artificial Intelligence and on semantic technologies. We debuted in France, UK and finally in the US.
Do you want to know what that freedom gave us? What was its measurable value? I will tell you this using a simple and very recent example. Not long ago our company shareholders were tempted to sell the company. This is usually a decisive step for many business organizations. However, we realized that such a step would take away the freedom we cherish so much. Instead we initiated an Employee Shareholder Program and now several of our newest shareholders are our employees!
Practising freedom in the company environment is far from trivial. It requires courage and determination. Sometimes it really is a “grin and bear it” way of life. It is difficult to see true freedom in a highly hierarchical and, shall we say, undemocratic environment. Paradoxically perhaps, we understand freedom not as an escape from duties, but as a liberty of choice. We are not “free from” we are “free to”.
It sometimes happens that company employees leave. In this realm we also practice freedom. Those who leave us make a conscious choice, but if that moment comes, we always nurture an atmosphere of friendship. We want all to feel free in their choices and all to feel our support. We strive to part in such a way that those who leave may also feel free to return. We have many former employees of Makolab here – I’m so happy you are with us today and can celebrate the success you were part of.
I hope that our “Pillars of the Earth” – Innovation, Customer Sovereignty, and Freedom – are, and will remain, as close to you all as they are to me.
I wish the same for all of us and for our now 30-year-old grown-up child – MakoLab!
Mam nadzieję, że nasze Filary Ziemi - Innowacja, Pierwszeństwo Klienta i Wolność - są i pozostaną tak samo bliskie Wam, jak i mnie.
Tego życzę sobie, Wam i naszemu dorosłemu dziś dziecku, 30-letniemu Makolabowi!
The author is a lawyer, a co-founder of the initiative # WolneSądy. He is a candidate for the European Parliament from the list of the European Coalition.
The words of Prime Minister Morawiecki comparing Polish judges to Nazi collaborators are shameful and unacceptable. As a lawyer and as a representative of civil society, who for 3.5 has been demanding respect for the rule of law in Poland and is opposed to destroying the independence of the Polish judiciary, I say: enough!
The Polish prime minister goes to the United States and announces publicly that Polish courts are inefficient and corrupt, and the judges of the communist regime that are ruling in them are like collaborators from Vichy who should be rid of. With this comparison, the Prime Minister exceeded all possible limits acceptable even in the most severe political struggle. He insulted the entire judiciary environment. Ten thousand people who constitute the third, constitutionally equal power in Poland.
And as an example of corruption and corruption, there are still a few of the same examples: a stolen drill, pendrive and sausage. To publicize this, state-owned companies have spent millions on campaigns throughout the country. How does this relate to the whole of the judicial environment? To this crowd of people, excellent lawyers who carry out their work diligently on a daily basis? It is pure demagogy and conscious, populist manipulation.
The same applies to the regime, communist past of judges. The average age of Polish judges is 41 years. So they could not have ruled before 1989 for obvious biological reasons. Like 12 or 13-year-olds, they did not actively participate in the underground struggle of the opposition. Anyway, if the authorities really wanted to eliminate from the justice of anyone who in the 1970s or 1980s had even issued one political sentence, a condemning oppositionist, would write such a formulated law. It's easy. But that's not the intention. The intention is only to subordinate courts and make them offices in which obedient judges-officials make decisions in line with the government's expectations.
In the end, the prime minister repeats what we have heard many times: in the European Union they do not know what is happening here, they have no idea about Polish law and the system of justice. Another absurdity. For several years I have had the opportunity to talk, meet and discuss the Polish rule of law with representatives of the EU institutions. I have personally talked with Frans Timmermens and his officials from the Commission personally, I have participated in debates in the Parliament. I stood before the CJEU due to the pre-trial inquiry regarding the National Court Register and the Disciplinary Chamber. So, based on my own experience, I can assess what the prime minister apparently did not notice or what he deliberately misrepresented. The level of professionalism and knowledge of lawyers and EU politicians who take care of Polish matter, I will not mention the competences in this field of the judges of the Tribunal, is the highest possible. Incomparable to legal knowledge presented by some representatives of the government.
Finally, it is necessary to say "enough" to the constant abandonment of the name of the Polish judiciary. The more so because there are legal grounds for this. On December 20, 2017, when taking Poland, for the first time in the history of the Union, the procedure under art. 7 of the EU Treaty, the European Commission, in its recommendations, ordered the rulers in Poland to refrain from actions and public statements that undermine the legitimacy of the administration of justice.
Prime Minister Morawiecki began his office by attacking the Polish judiciary in an article in the Washington Examineer, so as an initiative # FreeWe have protested, publishing a replica in the same newspaper.
Then similar defamations fell from the lips of the prime minister in the European Parliament or in the pages of "Le Figaro", there was an organized crime group, etc. The last American accent Morawiecki finally crossed the limits of any decency. This should be met with joint support from all Polish legal circles.
Beaten by Polish police during protest
against taking over of courts...
You who wronged a simple man
Bursting into laughter at the crime,
And kept a pack of fools around you
To mix good and evil, to blur the line,
Though everyone bowed down before you,
Saying virtue and wisdom lit your way,
Striking gold medals in your honor,
Glad to have survived another day,
Do not feel safe. The poet remembers.
You can kill one, but another is born.
The words are written down, the deed, the date. […]
And from many other places
in the world, where we live, study and work. We, the Poles, who do not
agree with how current policy casts a pall over the Polish-Jewish
relations developed over the years. We write to all of you who look at
Poland today with disbelief, sadness or anger.
We write because
we want you to know that regardless of how radical and inappropriate
the positions of Polish authorities or certain groups are, these are not
the positions and views of us all. We ask that you keep current
politics in perspective, although we know how difficult this may be.
There are millions of people in our country for whom the Polish-Jewish
dialogue and the truth about common history are important. We write to
you as friends to friends, so that you may know that we are there, in
Poland and the times that history and heritage bound us, and that we are
also bound together in daily life and the future.
was an unimaginable tragedy of the Jewish people – a great failure of
humanity. Today, instead of maintaining humility and respect for its
victims, attempts are being made to divide us, Jews and Poles.
law has been ratified by the Polish parliament, which provides
imprisonment for speech, statements are being made that seek to
whitewash Poles’ involvement in the Holocaust, thoughtless actions are
being taken by politicians that arouse anti-Semitic sentiment – all this
is not being done in our name. There are more of us, people who think
like us, who, seeing what is happening now, feel anger.
may feel bitterness, we may feel sadness, we may feel rage, but all
together we want to say: enough of the silence and divisiveness. We will
not allow the years of reconciliation to be destroyed. Only complete
truth and solidarity can be the foundation of our co-existence.
because the pride in those Poles who heroically helped the Jews will
not obscure the wrongs that Jews confronted in Poland, including from
citizens of our country. We want the whole truth about the Holocaust,
however painful it may be. Remembrance of millions of Jews, citizens of
Poland, murdered during the war, teaches us to learn from the past.
in years past, today is also about solidarity. It is about solidarity
in seeking the truth, solidarity with the descendants of Holocaust
victims, solidarity with the people expelled from home in 1968, and
solidarity in the face of anti-Semitism.
We are united by more
than a thousand years of common history; Jews are and have been Poles
for hundreds of years. They created and continue to create our common
country. Anti-Semitism is also aimed at us because it is aimed at people
and freedom of speech. That is why we want to say it loud and firmly –
NO TO ANTISEMITISM. No to misrepresenting history. That is why we should
all unite at this particular time around the truth about those terrible
times. So that they may never be repeated. Truth and solidarity are the
only ways we can return together to the path of reconciliation so
needed by both our nations.
Signed by NGOs: A Million Akcja Demokracja Archiwum Osiatyńskiego Autonomia Berliński Kongres Kobiet Bydgoskie Forum Obywatelskie Centrum Pomocy Prawnej im. Haliny Nieć Demokracja Siemiatycze Dziewuchy Dziewuchom Węgorzewo FARSA Londyn Femini Berlin Polska Forum Dialogu Forum Kraków Front Gorzów FG 2018 Fundacja ClientEarth Fundacja im. Bronisława Geremka Fundacja Liberte! Fundacja Idealna Gmina Fundacja im. Kazimierza Łyszczyńskiego Fundacja im. Stefana Batorego Fundacja Judaica Centrum Kultury Żydowskiej Kraków Fundacja Krystyny Jandy na rzecz Kultury Fundacja Lege Pharmaciae Fundacja Obserwatorium Żywej Kultury – Sieć Badawcza Fundacja Ośrodek Kontroli Obywatelskiej “OKO” Fundacja Pole Dialogu Fundacja Szkoła Liderów Gildia Polskich Reżyserów Dokumentalnych Gildia Polskich Reżyserów i Reżyserek Teatralnych Gildia Reżyserów Polskich Grupa Artystyczna Teraz Poliż Helsińska Fundacja Praw Człowieka Inicjatywa #WolneSądy Inicjatywa “Nie w moim imieniu” INPRIS – Instytut Prawa i Społeczeństwa Instytut Spraw Publicznych Klub Inteligencji Katolickiej Komitet Obrony Demokracji Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Dolnośląski Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Kujawsko-Pomorski Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Lubelski Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Lubuski Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Łódzki Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Małopolski Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Mazowiecki Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Opolski Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Podkarpacki Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Podlaski Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Pomorski Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Śląski Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Świętokrzyski Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Warmińsko-Mazurski Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Wielkopolski Komitet Obrony Demokracji Region Zachodniopomorski Krytyka Polityczna Kultura Liberalna Kultura Niepodległa Lęborskie Dziewuchy Manifest Wolnej Polki Obywatele Kultury Obywatele Nauki Obywatele Solidarnie w Akcji Obywatele RP Obywatele Dla Edukacji Ogólnopolska Federacja Organizacji Pozarządowych Ogólnopolski Strajk Kobiet Ogólnopolski
Strajk Kobiet: Gryfino, Gorzów Wielkopolski, Dąbrowa Górnicza, Jelenia
Góra, Katowice, Kielce, Kraków, Koszalin, Lublin, Opole, Piła, Piotrków
Trybunalski, Poznań, Puławy, Sanok, Sławno, Świnoujście, Warszawa,
Węgorzewo, Wrocław, Zajęczniki, Zgorzelec, Zielona Góra Polski PEN Club Polskie Stowarzyszenie im. Janusza Korczaka Poznań Wolny Od Nienawiści Pracowania Badań i Innowacji Społecznych STOCZNIA Projekt:Polska Protest Kobiet Radomianie Dla Demokracji Radomska Inicjatywa Kobieca Sieć Obywatelska Watchdog Polska Stowarzyszenie Interwencji Prawnej Stowarzyszenie im. Jana Karskiego, Kielce. Stowarzyszenie im. prof. Zbigniewa Hołdy Stowarzyszenie im. Janusza Korczaka Stowarzyszenie Klon/Jawor Stowarzyszenie Kongres Kobiet Stowarzyszenie na Rzecz Kultury Niepodległej Stowarzyszenie Pisarzy Polskich Stowarzyszenie Otwarta Rzeczpospolita Stowarzyszenie Obserwatorium Żywej Kultury – Sieć Badawcza Stowarzyszenie Stop Stereotypom Stowarzyszenie Śląskie Perły Rybnik Studencki Komitet Antyfaszystowski Toruńskie Dziewuchy Towarzystwo Dziennikarskie Unia Polskich Teatrów Warszawskie Dziewuchy Dziewuchom Wspólna Zielona Góra
As I know the author in person and feel honoured by our relation – I started reading his new book soon as it was published. I valued his technical books high and one of them (“Google Semantic Search”) was already a great source for inspiration for myself and my co-workers and a confirmation that our investment of time and energy into Semantic Technologies was not a misplaced effort.
Since then, and despite two more books in the general area of the social media and SEO domains, David started to evolve toward more fundamental matters that have impact on the life of businesses in the digital era and us – as the pillars of these businesses. His “The Tribe That Discovered Trust” touched the most vital feature of the business in the digital world – the trust – and how to create and regain if it was lost.
“The Sniper Mind” goes even further and marks David’s entry into an area that could perhaps be called business self-help books (what is in some sense corroborated by its subtitle), although I’m afraid to apply such a classification to that outstanding book…
Before I go to the essence of the book, I must admit I was initially deeply concerned if I ever would like it! My fear came straight from David’s choice to choose snipers and their minds as a source of inspiration! My convictions, beliefs and everything I value in life is based on the foundation of the utmost importance of human life. I really believe that killing a person is to kill the entire universe with its meaning – because the meaning of the universe, the world, societies and the nations comes, to me, only from the representation of the reality in and by our minds. To be clear, I’m not solipsists of any kind – I just am sure that everything we attribute to the concept of MEANING comes from and only from human consciousness and human spirit embedded into, or emerging from, our brains and bodies.
Whatever side they take, the side we find as “our” or even morally justified – the role of the snipers is to kill. This is just a fact we can’t deny. Of course, I’m old and experienced enough not to subscribe to idealistic pacifism at all cost, and I understand that in too many cases today, when we have people whose goal is to kill and destroy – there is often no other way than to kill them before they kill us and our beloved. I understand it. Nonetheless, there was a huge barrier inside myself to accept lightly David’s choice…
So it took me long time and tens of turns of the pages from its more than 400 leaves tome to cope with my resistance…
That time came with the help of the author, who suddenly explained it all:
“Sniper skills are next to useless to us, of course, unless we can metaphorically bottle them and transfer elsewhere”
Later, long into the book he makes it even clearer:
"The aim of this book is not so much to uncover the overlaps between all the different activities people engage in and then connect the dots between them to draw a picture of the mind's ability to perform at seemingly unhuman levels. That would be pointless. Everything uncovered, documented, itemized, and explained is designed to give us a chapter-by-chapter skill set to work upon, improving our own capabilities, acquiring new ones, changing our mind-set so that we are no longer ruled by circumstance, we are no longer blindly reacting to events around us and are capable of taking positive action to make our own decisions and control our own destiny"
So here we are, reading about the snipers’ experiences in their battlefields. We are able to know many by name (like famous John Ethan Place, Craig Harrison or Simo Häyhä and many more), some of others remained anonymous.
David Amerland deeply analyses the most important skills of great snipers to find that what makes them great is not only related to the military training – in many ways the more important is their ability to control filings and emotions, and act in constructive way in situations where most of us would be, at least, demotivated. We discover, through their experience, that it is impossible to draw a boundary between the mind and the body – the lesson frequently forget today…
All this has lots to do with the working of our brains. The book is full of references to neuroscience and psychology (can’t forget great references to the works of Amy Cuddy or David Eagleman). What I liked the most are the references to the meditation techniques, Zen and Vedic Sanskrit teaching (including the great: “Yad bhavam tad bhavati” – “You become. As you think”). In one of the Appendixes to the book the author gives the simple, yet effective lesson of meditation. We are frequently reminded in the book about the “other” dimension of our consciousness: “I listened to the silence of my mind” – comes from one former SEAL sniper.
All this relates to our, “normal” lives. I specifically made the word quoted, as in today’s business (and frequently – our private life) environments, nothing is normal anymore - and what we need, is exactly the strength of character and an ability to focus to the absolute maximum – to empower ourselves and the others – to create “a motivational platform” upon which we can build and grow and avoid “excessive worries” and “negative outcomes”. (Now I quote the concept from the book and syndromes it helps to dispel).
The book has interesting and repetitive structure, which helps to understand how a given facet of snipers’ experiences translates to a “Business Cases” and which skills of the snipers form an “Acquisition List” we could apply to our business activities.
There is a sentence in the book that perhaps makes this review complete:
"Because of the complexity of each of us as individuals is a microcosm of the world around us, the first battle we fight which we need to win is always with ourselves"
And with this quote, which so beautifully summarizes the central David’s Amerland message, I end my review.
I strongly recommend the book to all who understand how difficult is to be active in business today and who need support, guidance and examples …
Amazon.com: DAVID AMERLAND helps multi-national clients and start-ups to organize their SEO and Social Media strategies. He is a business journalist, author and international speaker. He blogs about social media and search engine optimization, writes for a number of prominent websites including Forbes, and advises corporations on their social media crisis management techniques. His books on SEO, Social Media and web trends demystify the complexity of the subjects they cover for readers around the world.