YAVUZ – New Turkey, Inc.

New Turkey, Inc.As Turkeyand#39s aance toward authoritarian rule becomes clearer, we have all, as pundits, been engaged in finding a proper term to cover what andldquoErdoIanand#39s Wayandrdquo really is.

andldquoDespotismandrdquo and andldquoautocracyandrdquo have been frequently used, but now I see Gkhan BacIk digging deeper into what he calls andldquotribalismandrdquo and mer TaIpInar attempting to bring to the coining process some sophistication by making — what, for President Recep Tayyip ErdoIan, is rather a compliment — a suggestion on Turkish Gaullism, stretching the point somewhat.Meanwhile, I am inclined to continue to suggest andldquoErdoIanismo,andrdquo which I believe on many points overlaps with the andldquoFujimorismo,andrdquo resolutely imposed by the former president of Peru, Alberto Fujimori, (which cost him his freedom).

My point is, what Iahin Alpay calls andldquopresidentialismandrdquo does not need an excess of analysis here: It is pure and simple one-man rule — as opposed to Gaullist structures — without any checks and balances, with a demolished andldquoFourth Estate,andrdquo and a beaten and buckled civil society. This was Fujimoriand#39s dream state, as he tried to gallop over rules and regulations, doing his best, though at the end not so successfully, to abolish the separation of powers and subordinate the media to his will.

A simple model, indeed.But now, as we are tearing our hair out, President ErdoIan himself came closer to defining what the model in his dreams is, when he — breaching the Constitution for the umpteenth time in an address in BalIkesir — openly asked for 400 seats for the Justice and Development Party (AKP) to establish an executive presidency.

andldquoDo you know what my issue is?andrdquo he asked the cheering crowd. andldquoTurkey should be run like a corporation.

Otherwise you are shackled, just like now, and it is impossible to walk.andrdquoWelcome to andldquoNew Turkey Inc.

andrdquoThis reminded me of what a powerful bank director in Turkey told me, once upon a time. The AKP had been in power for some years and we had started to note some disturbing signals from the then-Prime Minister ErdoIan, who had complained of some overruling decision made by the Council of State about some construction projects.

andldquoIn his heart and mind he wants to rule this country like a mayor manages a city,andrdquo the banker told me.andldquoHe wants to redesign politics as a lucrative business, from A to ZandrdquoPolitics has always been business, but once power is personalized, simplified to a system under a andldquobig boss,andrdquo the story becomes dramatic.

The now-tarnished graft probes, dating back to December 17 and 25, 2013, will remain historic cases and serve as documentation, a warning of what can be expected once the judiciary is out of the way and no longer a andldquonuisance.andrdquoThe Cumhuriyet daily — as one of the very few independent outlets still engaged in investigative journalism — has been reporting how Istanbul Public Housing Corporation (KIPTAI) executives have acquired a hefty list of valuable properties during their tenure, becoming super rich.

Cumhuriyetand#39s top investigative reporter, iIdem Toker, yesterday wrote that ErdoIanand#39s much-talked-about city hospitals project — with at least 15 hospitals — hit a wall because international investors have openly expressed doubts as to whether or not the rule of law applies in Turkey any longerIt is clear that the holders of international capital see the andldquoNew Turkey Inc.andrdquo differently than its enthusiastic architect, who wants to be the supreme leader, unchecked and immune.

Foreign direct investments in Turkey are plummeting.As Adnan Nas, a top manager of Global Investment Holding told Todayand#39s Zaman:andldquoThere are two essentials that global capital looks for: macroeconomic stability and the rule of law.

The rule of law doesnand#39t exist in Turkey. We have never managed it.

We have evaded the EU reforms and the [accession] process has slowed down. Our willingness [to pass reforms] through the EU [accession process] has become questionable.

andrdquoWhat former President Abdullah Gul once underlined, and what now Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan and Central Bank of Turkey Governor Erdem BaII have for some time been fighting for, is exactly this. What is turning Turkey into a slow loser in international competition is the lack of institutionalization, consistency in the rule of law, trust, predictability and rational, not erratic, behaviorGiven the latest, strong patterns of ErdoIanand#39s interventionism in all economic affairs, his andldquoNew Turkey Inc.

andrdquo model has all the opposites, and is bound for failure, and eventually, disaster.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman