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Kazimierz and his Isabel

A former Polish prime minister demonstrates how to end a political career.

Despite his rather strange journey to the British capital, Marcinkiewicz tried to remain in the limelight back home and — in poll after poll — maintained his position as one of the most respected political figures.

But then the freedom of London evidently went to his head. Marcinkiewicz publicly split from his wife, and was seen shopping for an engagement ring for his new girlfriend. He called her “fantastic, ambitious and governed by principles.”

But Poland has not shared the same enchantment with Isabel as her middle-aged lover. In a recent poll of potential presidential candidates, Marcinkiewicz dropped from third to seventh place, and is now considered increasingly irrelevant.

In a recent radio interview, Prime Minister Donald Tusk noted: “We had talked with Kazimierz Marcinkiewicz when his political future seemed fairly bright and straightforward,” adding that Marcinkiewicz had even been considered for a government post, but that was before he became “a soap opera hero.” Earlier suggestions that he would stand for the European Parliament have been scrapped.

On top of that, Marcinkiewicz has become an advisor to the investment bank Goldman Sachs, a big player in the recent speculation against the zloty. Marcinkiewicz insists, fairly credibly, he had nothing to do with currency trades, but it hasn’t helped his nationalist credentials.

Now Marcinkiewicz is trying to defend himself in the media, and his girlfriend has taken to writing anti-tabloid poems on his political blog.

A recent verse (translated into English):

“Reporters got writing,
Their comments on the internet posting,
Ridiculing,
Hypocrisy supporting.”

His political career might be over, but Marcinkiewicz faces a tempting new 21st century possibility: His career as a professional celebrity looks increasingly viable.

More GlobalPost dispatches on Poland:

A bearish direction for Polish banking?

A Polish story through Hollywood's eyes

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/poland/090314/kazimierz-and-his-isabel