Bulgaria’s criminal ‘insurance’ rackets of the early 1990s have been dismantled but the Neanderthal bortsi, the hired muscle, remain influential and ubiquitous.
They are widely emulated and, as a social group, they represent a highly demonstrative clan among the well to do within urban society. Their offspring strut their stuff in the corridors of the elite schools. Disembarking from upmarket, foreign cars (characteristically, jet black or crimson) at 8.15, they enter school, mobile phone glued to ear, intent on making a fashion statement sufficient to knock the socks off any US pop idol. They are frequently disdainful of their classmates and teachers. The average teacher hasn’t the skill or the courage to curb their brashness. What can the school directors do? Threaten expulsion?