Janusz Korwin-Mikke

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Janusz Korwin-Mikke
Janusz Korwin-Mikke Sejm 2016.JPG
Korwin-Mikke in 2016
Member of the Sejm
Assumed office
12 November 2019
ConstituencyWarsaw I
In office
25 November 1991 – 31 May 1993
ConstituencyPoznań 18
Member of the European Parliament
In office
1 July 2014 – 1 March 2018
Personal details
Janusz Ryszard Korwin-Mikke

(1942-10-27) 27 October 1942 (age 79)
Warsaw, General Governorate, German Reich (German-occupied Poland)
Political partyKORWiN
Other political
SD (1962–1982)
Real Politics Union (1987–2009)
WiP (2009–2011)
KNP (2011–2015)
Spouse(s)Ewa Mieczkowska (1966–73,div.)
Małgorzata Szmit (1993–?,div.)
Dominika Sibiga (2016–)
Alma materUniversity of Warsaw (Master of Philosophy in 1969)

Janusz Ryszard Korwin-Mikke (Polish: [ˈjanuʂ ˈkɔrvʲin ˈmʲikkɛ]; born 27 October 1942),[1] also known by his initials JKM or simply as Korwin, is a Polish far-right[2][3][4][5] politician, paleolibertarian[6][7][8] and author. He was a member of the European Parliament from 2014 until 2018. He was the leader of the Congress of the New Right (KNP),[9] which was formed in 2011 from Liberty and Lawfulness, which he led from its formation in 2009, and the Real Politics Union (Unia Polityki Realnej), which he led from 1990 to 1997 and from 1999 to 2003. Currently, he is the chairman of the party KORWiN, and since 2019 he is a member of the Sejm, elected from the electoral list of Confederation Liberty and Independence.



Janusz Korwin-Mikke was born in German-occupied Warsaw on 27 October 1942. He was the only child of Ryszard Mikke and Maria Rosochacka. His father was the head of an engineering department of the State Aviation Works. After the death of his mother during the Warsaw Uprising in 1944, he was under the care of his grandmother and later stepmother. Janusz Korwin-Mikke's great-grandfather was Gustaw Izydor Mikke aka Mücke, son of Samuel Beniamin Mücke (who was a brewer in Kielce) and grandson of Samuel Mücke.[10]

Detainment by communists[edit]

Korwin-Mikke studied at the Faculty of Mathematics and Faculty of Philosophy of the Warsaw University. For his anti-communist activities, in 1964 he was detained by the communist authorities while studying psychology, law, philosophy and sociology. During the 1968 Polish political crisis, he was again arrested, jailed and expelled from the university for his participation in student protests.[11] Despite his anti-communist activities, JKM was reinstated and allowed to finish his studies with the dean Klemens Szaniawski. He successfully defended his master thesis Metodologiczne aspekty poglądów Stephena Toulmina (eng. Methodological aspects of Stephen Toulmin's views), written under the guide of Henryk Jankowski.[12]

Meeting with Milton Friedman[edit]

Korwin-Mikke met with Milton Friedman when Friedman toured Europe advocating free-market policies. Friedman wrote about Janusz Korwin-Mikke in his memoirs:[13]

Janusz Korwin-Mikke, with whom I corresponded, had been active before liberation as an underground publisher, bringing out a translation of Capitalism and Freedom and Hayek's Road to Serfdom, as well as other libertarian literature. Subsequently, he ran for president on a strict libertarian platform. At the time we were in Warsaw, his Union of Real Policy was housed in a former dwelling that was a literal maze of small offices, all occupied by young people actively working on spreading the libertarian gospel. We had very good, lively discussions with them.

— Milton Friedman, Two lucky people: Memoirs by Milton Friedman, Rose. D. Friedman

Far-right politics[edit]

From 1962 to 1982 he was a member of the Democratic Party. In August 1980 he supported the political strike of the Szczecin Shipyard workers, and later he was an adviser of NSZZ Rzemieślników Indywidualnych "Solidarność" (Independent Craftsmen's Union). In 1987 he founded a national conservative, economically liberal political party called Ruch Polityki Realnej (Movement of Real Politics), later renamed - Unia Polityki Realnej (UPR, Union of Real Politics).

In 1990 he established a weekly paper Najwyższy Czas! (About Time!).[14][15]

Korwin-Mikke was a member of Parliament during the first term of the Sejm of the Third Republic of Poland. He was the originator of the vetting resolution on 28 May 1992, which obliged the Minister of Internal Affairs to disclose the names of all politicians who had been communist secret police agents. The disclosed list contained numerous prominent politicians of most political factions. This led to the government being overthrown by the opposition and the President Lech Walesa.[16]

He was his party's candidate in Polish presidential elections, obtaining 2.4% votes in 1995, 1.43% in 2000, 1,4% in 2005, 2.48% in 2010, 3.3% in 2015.[17] In 2018 he co-founded a eurosceptic political party Konfederacja. In 2019 he was elected for deputy in the lower chamber of Polish Parliament (Sejm).[18] He is a self-declared monarchist who claims that democracy is "the most stupid form of government ever conceived".[19] Janusz Korwin-Mikke is a former professional contract bridge player. He has authored, together with Andrzej Macieszczak, a popular book on the subject.[20]

In 2008, his blog was the most popular political blog in Poland.[21]

He frequently refers to such figures as Frédéric Bastiat, Alexis de Tocqueville, Friedrich Hayek, Milton Friedman, Margaret Thatcher.[22]


During the 2000 presidential campaign in Poland

At the plenary session of the European Parliament held after the assault at Charlie Hebdo, Korwin-Mikke expressed his dissatisfaction with the public reaction to those events by typing at his laptop 'I am not Charlie. I am for death penalty' and presenting it to the public instead of a sign 'Je suis Charlie' held by the other MEPs.[23]

Korwin-Mikke during a press conference in the Polish Sejm, 2015

Allegations of sexism[edit]

In 1991 Korwin-Mikke published his guidebook for men, "Father's Vademecum", in which he wrote many pieces of advice that have been recognized as highly controversial and sexist, such as "If you cannot resolve conflict with your wife in any way, if you cannot convince her, then, unfortunately, you have to use physical force."[24]

He believes that women are, on average, less intelligent than men, citing chess results to back up his claims.[25][26] He has cited Margaret Thatcher as his political model.[27][28][29] He stated that the difference between rape and consensual sex is very subtle,[30] even going as far as saying that "Were you to understand woman's nature, sir, you would know that there is an element of rape in every sexual intercourse".[31] He further claimed that: "there is a hypothesis that the attitudes of men are passed to women they sleep with".[32]

On 1 March 2017, Korwin-Mikke sparked controversy by stating that women were paid less than their male counterparts on average due to them being "smaller, weaker and less intelligent", during a debate in the EP regarding the gender pay gap.[33][34] Two days later, Korwin-Mikke made further comments stating that there was a stereotype that "women have the same intellectual potential as men” and it “must be destroyed because it is not true.”[35]

The situations described above, that took place in the gender pay gap debate, culminated in a court hearing. On 31 May, 2018 European General Court in the Case T‑352/17 Korwin-Mikke v Parliament lifted sanctions from 14 March, 2017 imposed on Korwin Mikke by the President of the Parliament, under which he was suspended for ten days from the plenary sessions of the EP. The Court in Case T-352/17 described interpretation of the provisions of the Rules of Procedure made by the President of the European Parliament and the Bureau of the Parliament, which was the basis for imposing sanctions on Korwin-Mikke, as leading to "an arbitrary restriction of the freedom of expression of MEPs".[36]

Allegations of racism[edit]

In 2014, Korwin-Mikke was fined by President of the European Parliament Martin Schulz for 'expressing himself in a racist manner'.[37] The decision was taken after his speech about EU employment policy on the plenary session on 16 July, during which he said: 'we have 20 million Europeans who are now negroes of Europe'.[38][39] According to him the word 'negroes' was not meant as an offence, but rather referred to the song by John Lennon and Yoko Ono 'Woman is the Nigger of the world'.[40]

Allegations of homophobia and transphobia[edit]

During an interview with Rzeczpospolita, Korwin-Mikke expressed support for prohibiting "homosexual propaganda" in schools, as well as prohibiting the organization of Equality Marches.[41] He claimed that "one must slaughter" those who promote gay rights.[42]

Korwin-Mikke described Anna Grodzka, the first trans woman to be a member of Parliament in Poland, as a male when stating that Grodzka "extorted his seat in the Sejm by impersonating a woman."[43]

Allegations of Islamophobia and anti-Semitism[edit]

He stated that the best way to deal with Muslims in Europe would be to keep them out, ban them from building mosques, and "if need be, oppose them militarily”.[44]

Korwin-Mikke has a history of antisemitic stunts and statements.[45] He promoted a conspiracy theory on Jews while commenting media reports about a custom in which residents of the town of Pruchnik beat with sticks the effigy of an Orthodox Jew.[45] In 2020, while making comments on the COVID-19 pandemic, he stated that anti-Jewish pogroms made Jews powerful via natural selection and that rabbis may have engineered this.[45][46] Korwin-Mikke denies being an antisemite.[26][47]

Allegations of ableism[edit]

During the 2012 Summer Paralympics, Korwin-Mikke wrote that the general public should "not see the disabled on television".[48] On the other hand, in 2007, he set up the "Individual Development Foundation" which helps disabled people develop their skills in chess.[49][50]

Endorsement of conspiracy theories[edit]

On 15 April 2015, the Polish news outlet Wiadomości quoted Korwin-Mikke that the snipers that shot civilians and police officers during the Maidan protests were trained in Poland and that they acted on behalf of the CIA to provoke riots.[51] Other provocative statements include Korwin-Mikke's claim that there is no written proof that Adolf Hitler was aware of the Holocaust.[30]

Criticism of the EU[edit]

Korwin-Mikke proposed that the European Commission's Berlaymont building would be better used as a brothel.[19][52] In July 2015, he was suspended from the EP after giving a Nazi salute and saying "ein Reich, ein Volk, ein ticket" during a speech to protest against a uniform EU transport ticket.[53] Following the beginning of protests in Belarus, Korwin made a statement praising Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenko as a hero for his opposition to the EU.[54]

Criticism of social welfare[edit]

In regard to welfare, Korwin-Mikke claimed that "if someone gives money to an unemployed person, he should have his hand cut off because he is destroying the morale of the people".[32]

On 8 September 2015, Korwin-Mikke was giving a speech in EP about the European migrant crisis, during which he described immigrants unwilling to work and only interested in welfare as "human garbage".[55] His opinion met with critical reaction of other MEPs. As a result of this, Korwin-Mikke was once more suspended from the EP for ten days and fined €3062.[56][57]


Selected works by JKM:

Korwin-Mikke in 2013
  • Brydż (Bridge), 1976
  • Program Liberałów (Liberals' Program(me)), 1979 – Program(me) of a future libertarian-conservative party.
  • Ubezpieczenia (Insurances), 1979 – Critical analysis/evaluation of state-provided social insurances.
  • Katechizm robotnika liberała (Catechism of a liberal worker), 1979 – Explanatory brochure ("FAQ") about the basic tenets of economic liberalism, aimed at the working class.
  • Bez impasu. Elementy logiki i psychologii w brydżu (Without impasse/finesse. Elements of logic and psychology in bridge), 1980
  • Brydż dla początkujących (Bridge for beginners), 1980
  • Gospodarka po sierpniu 1980, czyli co proponuje P. Józef Pińkowski (Economic system after the Gdańsk Agreement, a word about Sir Józef Pińkowski's proposals), 1980 – Critical analysis/evaluation of a socialist economy, as well as the economic policies of Solidarity movement and the ruling government.
  • Historia i zmiana (History and change), 1982 – On evolution of political systems and their economies.
  • JK-M vs. NN (JKM vs. Anonymous reader), 1985 – Brochure of JKM's polemics with an anonymous reader.
  • Liberum veto, 1986
  • Brydż sportowy (Sport's bridge), 1986
  • Ratujmy państwo (Let's Save the Country), 1990
  • Nie tylko o Żydach (Not Only About Jews), 1991 – About inter-Polish politics.
  • Prowokacja? (Provocation?), 1991 – Combined feuilletons from years 1980–1990, originally published in "Gazeta Handlowa" in the city of Poznań.
  • Vademecum ojca (Father's vademecum), 1991 – Aimed at the young fathers on how to raise one's children.
  • "Rząd rżnie głupa" – czyli mowy sejmowe (The government is playing dumb – Sejm speeches), 1993
  • Wizja parlamentu w nowej konstytucji Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej (Vision of parliament within the new constitution of a Polish Republic), 1994
  • Kara śmierci (Death penalty), 1995 – Analytical, pro-capital punishment brochure.
  • U progu wolności (At the doorstep of freedom/liberty), 1995 – Combined feuilletons from years 1981–1995, originally published in various sources.
  • Niebezpieczne ubezpieczenia (Dangerous insurances), 2000 – Critical analysis/evaluation of insurances and their negative influences on society's progress.
  • Ekonomikka (Economikks), 2001 – Combined feuilletons on economic subjects, chosen by Zdzisław Kościelak.
  • Rok 2007 (Year 2007), 2001 – An account of fictional letters that JKM would write and send to the world's leaders once elected and in power.
  • Dekadencja (Decadence), 2002
  • Naprawić Polskę, no problem (To fix Poland? No problem!), 2004
  • Podatki – Czyli rzecz o grabieży (Taxes – byword for robbery), 2004 – Critical analysis/evaluation of state-imposed taxes, with a focus on Poland.
  • Kto tu dymi? (Who is raising a fuss here?), 2007
  • Rusofoby w odwrocie (Russophobes in retreat), 2009 – Analysis and criticism of Polish foreign policy, with focus on Eastern Europe (Belarus, Ukraine, Russia).
  • Świat według Korwina (World according to Korwin), 2012 – Combined feuilletons.
  • Europa według Korwina (Europe according to Korwin), 2016 – Combined feuilletons, strong criticism of European Union.


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External links[edit]