Campaign strategies against Jobbik: Tapolca-Ajka

Now that the by-election in Tapolca-Ajka is approaching, it is time to think about how the candidate of MSZP-DK, Ferenc Pad, could defeat his two opponents. Just the other day he announced that he will not conduct a negative campaign. As I indicated earlier, Fidesz has already mounted a two-pronged attack. It called attention to Pad’s alleged wealth, accumulated when he was a trade union leader who acted as if he truly cared about the well-being of hard-working people. At the same time the Fidesz publication, pestisrácok.hu, began an attack on the Jobbik candidate, Lajos Rig, by calling attention to his alleged tattoo depicting the Nazi SS’s slogan “My Honor Is Loyalty.” Should the MSZP-DK candidate remain quiet or should he try to undermine the credibility of his opponents?

Admittedly, it is not an easy task to devise an effective campaign in a three-way race, but I still think that a totally defensive campaign from Ferenc Pad would be a mistake, especially since in the past two weeks Jobbik’s newly created and carefully nurtured reputation has suffered several setbacks. The party’s strategists decided that if Jobbik wants to become a force that could one day gain the confidence of the majority of the voters, it must conceal its true nature. After all, all experts say that one can win an election only from the middle. If Jobbik brands itself as an extremist racist party, it will always remain on the fringe. So came what Hungarians call the “cuki” campaign. A charm offensive. Sweetness and light. Instead of spewing anti-Roma and anti-Semitic remarks, Gábor Vona, the party chairman, posed with vizsla puppies to promote the humane treatment of animals.

The problem with these phony metamorphoses is that sooner or later the truth usually emerges. This is what has been happening lately to Jobbik.

On March 5 vigyazo.blog.hu released an audio tape on which Tamás Sneider, the Jobbik deputy president of parliament, can be heard telling his audience that the “cuki campaign” isn’t real. The party hasn’t changed, but they had to temper their message because they don’t want to frighten away the more moderate voters, especially the large crowd of pensioners. However, the Betyársereg (The Army of Outlaws), a group of extremists, since they are not a parliamentary party, can deliver the real message of Jobbik. The two groups complement each other well and have developed a working relationship based on a division of labor. The Betyársereg is an outright Nazi party, which I wrote about in an earlier post. In addition, Sneider talked at some length about “Islam being the last hope of mankind.” He described Islamic extremism as “anti-Western feelings for which the West is responsible.” Sneider has a personal secretary who became a Muslim which, according to his boss, “is much better than if he had converted to Judaism.” The personal secretary is a full-fledged member of Betyársereg, an organization Sneider claimed to know nothing about in a later interview with Olga Kálmán on ATV.

Party chief Gábor Vona with members of Betyársereg / http://betyarsereg.hu/

Party chief Gábor Vona with members of Betyársereg / betyarsereg.hu

Surely, given these embarrassing revelations, those who oppose Lajos Rig, the Jobbik candidate in the Tapolca-Ajka by-election, should concentrate on the duplicity of the “cuki campaign” instead of wasting their time on the man’s tattoos. And yes, even the MSZP-DK candidate should call attention to the real nature of Jobbik, as former MSZP chairman Ildikó Lendvai suggests in an opinion piece that appeared in Népszava. But instead of giving history lessons about events that took place more than 80 years ago in Germany, about which ordinary folks know darned little, she argues that MSZP-DK should talk about those Islamic extremists who burn people alive. After all, people see atrocities committed by these people practically every day on their television screens and they’re horrified. In her opinion, that would bring home the danger of Jobbik’s racist, extremist message much more effectively than anything else.

But if the MSZP-DK candidate confronts Jobbik openly and discredits its candidate, wouldn’t such a strategy only strengthen the other opponent, Fidesz? Let’s assume that large numbers of would-be Jobbik voters see the light and decide that after all they don’t want to vote for such an extremist party. Wouldn’t they embrace Fidesz as the lesser evil? Perhaps not–if a sophisticated strategy could be devised that would, on the one hand, emphasize the incompetence and corruption of the present government and, on the other, stress that Fidesz and Jobbik are kindred ideological souls.

I doubt that any serious strategy has been worked out so far. And yet this is an important election. If Jobbik wins, it will give an incredible boost to this extremist party that has been steadily gaining adherents. Moreover, until now Jobbik was not strong enough in any electoral district to win a seat outright. If this barely literate Lajos Rig manages to gain a seat on his own, it would be a first. I do hope that the MSZP-DK candidate and the people around him realize the importance of this election and act accordingly.

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koeszmeod
Guest

Other Topic:
Shame on Ilan Mor, Ambassador of the State of Israel to Hungary

for censoring the Hungarian Eurovision song
and
for protecting racist comments of Israel’s Foreign Minister and Prime Minister.

http://mandiner.hu/cikk/20150323_meg_kell_vedenem_a_hazamat_izrael_nagykovete_az_eurovizios_dalbotranyrol

Nádas
Guest

Getting way OT here, but check out the Israeli soccer team Beitar, whose fans pride themselves on having never had a Palestinian Arab player on their team, unlike all other Israeli professional teams. Their motto, often held aloft on banners: “Beitar, forever pure.” And their favorite chant: “Death to Arabs!”

Israel. Always taking it to the next level.

Member

There are extremists everywhere, but stay away of generalizing! THis blog has a fair share of commenters who apply the “common guilt”, but they are not “drive by commenters. Did you posted here before? I do not recall your user name. This makes me assume that you are simply here to put in your two cents worth of anti-semitic rant. In Canada there was a 16 year old boy shot on the weekend. DOes this mean that everyone who lives in Canada are killers?
Keep your hatred out of here Nadas. When you have something to say that provides something meaningful to conversations, do come back, otherwise just keep your comments to kurucinfo and Magyar Hirlap because you will certainly get a large applause, and that is what you are aiming for anyhow.

koeszmeod
Guest

Some1
Nadas is right about Beitar. The problem is much larger and very similar to the Hungarian situation.
Beitar fans are like Fradi fans. But the problem is that now in the majority of Israeli society these kind of racist comments became acceptable. That is why Netanyahu used it in his campaign several times.

Nádas
Guest
Some1: Yes, I do post here from time to time, and have been reading HS for years. So you really think that mentioning Israeli racism is “hatred” and “anti-Semitism”? You are seriously mistaken. Did you not follow Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s recent election campaign? It was based on anti-Arab racism and a promise of further illegal land grabs, ethnic cleansing, and no Palestinian state – ever. This is what koeszmeod was referring to in the comment on the Israeli ambassador. And I’m sure you’re aware that Netanyahu’s Likud Party won re-election overwhelmingly. His racist and expansionist policies are quite popular with a large segment of Israeli society. It is important to be aware of these Israeli attitudes – and anti-Arab hatred is common there, though certainly not universal – to understand at least part of the resurgence of anti-Semitism in Hungary and elsewhere in Europe. It is not simply and entirely hatred of Jews. There is also a significant reaction to Israeli behavior. Imagine a soccer club in Hungary that was openly proud of never having Roma players on their team (“Forever Pure!”) and chanted “Death to Gypsies” at their matches. I think you would rightly be outraged. Read my… Read more »
Tyrker
Guest

koeszmeod: Yes, that’s an absolute shame. It will bolster Jobbik’s support in Hungary.

What did the Israelis think they were doing when they instructed Ilan Mor to try and censor the video?

Paul
Guest

I think the MSzP/DK candidate should conduct a completely positive campaign – for two reasons:

Firstly, he wouldn’t stand a chance in such a fight if he starts one with Fidesz (or Jobbik), they are both masters at dirty campaigns (and worse) – the left candidate would go down in flames.

And, secondly, he’s much better off standing back and letting Fidesz and Jobbik tear lumps out of each other. It’s unlikely that his electioneering will persuade many (if any) Fidesz of Jobbik voters to defect to him, but many might do when they see the other two parties fighting each other (and him keeping out of it and acting like the only adult in the election).

Member

Now, there is interesting question: Is the truth what Fidesz does not want to let Hungarians know considers to be negative campaign? I mean saying that Fidesz promised this and that, but did but deliver, is that negative campaign?

Alex Kuli
Guest

Hungarian politicians on the “left” have no idea how to campaign, negative or positive. Some1 is correct: The MSZP and friends think it’s somehow impolite to hold the government’s feet to the fire. They think they will win more support by promoting their own virtues rather than highlighting their opponents’ failures. This rose-colored, naive view of human nature is one reason why the “left” has performed so disastrously in every election since 2006.

Morningstar
Guest
Someone mentioned the interview of Ilan Mor the Ambassador of Israel. In this interview the significant part I think was not what was mentioned before, censoring or not censoring a song. It was this: Interviewr: “Épp Lieberman izraeli külügyminiszter mondta két hete, hogy le kellene fejezni az Izraelhez illojális arabokat. Baltával. Ilan Mor, Ambassador: Kampányban kicsúsznak az ember száján mondatok, olyanok is, amelyeket később inkább elfelejtene. ” This translates roughly to: Andras Stumpf the interviewer: “It was Lieberman the foreign minister of Israel who said about two weeks ago that Arabs not loyal to Israel should be beheaded. With axes.” Ilan Mor’s Answer “In a campaign there are sentences that come out from one’s mouth that one wants to forget later” So in this the Ambassador unfortunately did not deny that such a sentence was uttered about he beheading of Arabs. Yet the barbarity of such a sentence can be shocking to a Hungarian audience. In fact in my opinion as soon as such a question was posed, Ilan Mor should have ended the interview without a reply. In my view Ilan Mor is a good ambassador and a getlemen, but in this case he made a mistake by agreeing… Read more »
Koeszmeod
Guest

Ilan Mor has no moral ground Andras Stumpf was right to ask the most disturbing and shocking facts about Israeli leaders and the society. Because they win votes with racists speeches.
He represents a racist government.
Btw I checked texts of Israeli Eurovidion songs in the last 15 years and there are many with political content. The difference is that right wing racists like Ilan Mor were not able to censor them in Israel though they tried. For example the song when a gay couple was kissing and speaks about Israeli Arab friendship with Israeli and Syrian flags

koeszmeod
Guest

Lieberman:
“Those who are against us, there’s nothing to be done – we need to pick up an axe and cut off his head. Otherwise we won’t survive here.”
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/worldviews/wp/2015/03/10/israeli-foreign-minister-says-disloyal-arabs-should-be-beheaded/

Netanyahu:
on Arab voters
http://www.ibtimes.com/israel-election-2015-netanyahu-video-says-position-danger-arab-voters-coming-out-1849600

koeszmeod
Guest

Ilan Mor is a very controversial figure. He distributed Yad Vashem prizes in the building of the Hungarian Interior ministry with Pinter who is responsible for the forced labor program. When one of the participants wanted to read a protest letter , Ilan Mor himself pulled him away. (censored the son of a righteous who tried to speak up against the racist policies of the present Hungarian government)

Ec
Guest

The growth of Jobbik is a kind of success, it shows that the right-wing is strong and is growing (as opposed to the left-wing which is dead in the water) — says Zoltan Balog.

Nobody should worry, Fidesz will splendidly work together with Jobbik.

http://hvg.hu/itthon/20150324_Balog_Zoltaninterju

MagyarArany
Guest

Really?

Raising all other irrelevant topics, is just another stab in the body of decent Hungarians.

Is there a massive rescue plan to save us from the orban/kover/vona/morvai/balczo/gyongyos monsters?

Everything else is irrelevant.

Let us win by our integrity!

petofi
Guest

A Hungarian thinking:

“Integrity? Is there any profit in it? Can I lord it over my neighbours? No? Well, then, get it the hell out of here; it’s no use to me…sounds like a comcsik plot!”

Tóni
Guest

The dog that didn’t bark, episode 362.

Why it is that none of MSZP, Együtt, DK, LMP, PM etc. are pounding the table about Questor or Buda-Cash??????

Fidesz was hitting the Tocsik case like crazy as well as the Kulcsár case and it worked well for Fidesz.

Can it be that the left-wing, besides being totally inapt, amateur, clueless is also totally corrupt and got its fair (ie. small crumbles because the left-wing is also really petty and cheap) share of the stolen tens of billions?????????

There are huge corruption scandals literally week after week and the entire left-wing is mute. Isn’t this strange?

Member

You know, “no negative campaigning”. LOL
They hope to win with the Summer weather forecast, and with the news about the raising popularity of chimney cake.

tik-tak
Guest
Many writers of this blog and people like them are the most responsible for the growth of Jobbik. If a foreign person reads this blog and many others like it they would have no idea that Jobbik is a big problem at all. The party is very rarely mentioned and even then the context is not too negative (for example just read back the coverage of the Jobbik victory in Ózd against Fidesz. Tell me how many people on this blog viewed the Jobbik victory as a negative event). If people on here don’t view Jobbik that negatively, don’t view their victories too negatively how can you expect the general population to view Jobbik in a negative light. The truth is that everyone has limited amounts of resources, limited time, limited effort, limited money, just like this blog. And about 0.1% of these resources on this blog are spent on fighting Jobbik. And so Jobbik strengthens, there is nothing surprising about this. As soon people in the media (this blog included) start spending 80-90% of their resources on fighting Jobbik, the party will lose support quickly. The media has all the power, and only it can decide how to spend… Read more »
Webber
Guest

” If a foreign person reads this blog and many others like it they would have no idea that Jobbik is a big problem at all.”
????
What are you talking about?
There has never been anything but very pointed and strong criticism of Jobbik on this blog whenever that party is mentioned.
There has also been very strong criticism of Fidesz here – naturally, since it is the party (mis)governing Hungary. And if you read carefully, you will see that the blog writer and quite a few who make comments are very worried about the possibility that Fidesz and Jobbik will form a coalition after the next elections – or even now, to pass laws in parliament requiring a 2/3 majority.
So, what did you mean?

Member

Good Morning!

Top Right Corner – CLICK – Hungarian Spectrum Searc – ENTER – Jobbik

tik-tak
Guest
Webber your mentality shows the problem perfectly. You are exactly the type that enables Jobbik to grow, of course not you alone but many people like you. I were talking about Jobbik and what do you write as reply?? “There has never been anything but very pointed and strong criticism of Jobbik on this blog whenever that party is mentioned” You write and then immediately you go on to discuss Fidesz, and how it is natural to have “very strong criticism of” it on the blog. Well if it is that natural, it is only natural that readers come to the conclusion that it is better to vote for Jobbik than to vote for Fidesz. Many in the media behave the same way and thus Jobbik strengthens. This is natural consequence of the actions of the media, including media people on here. Notice, you never refute the point. Very little resources are spent on fighting Jobbik on this blog or elsewhere. You only say “whenever Jobbik is mentioned”. Yet that is irrelevant, the general impression a reader of this blog gets is that Jobbik is not a real problem. It is mentioned very rarely and is dwarfed by other issues… Read more »
Guest

HS doesn’t attack any party. It exposes what parties do or fail to do. Some parties erroneously equate exposition with verbal attack. Exposition is the true purpose of free media.

Webber
Guest

“Webber your mentality shows the problem perfectly.”
??? Nice. Start with insults. Always convincing.
I can’t resist a retort –
This sentence is incredibly illogical – you say of me:
“You write – (something negative about Jobbik) – and then immediately you go on to discuss Fidesz, and how it is natural to have “very strong criticism of” it on the blog. Well if it is that natural, it is only natural that readers come to the conclusion that it is better to vote for Jobbik than to vote for Fidesz.”
Following that logic: If I say repeatedly that strychnine is poison, but only mention arsenic once, “people” (actually just you) will think that arsenic is okay and will take it.
Please do.

Istvan
Guest

As an American Hungarian who has been in Hungary and seen both Jobbik rallies and Fidesz peace marches I have come to the conclusion that one party can not be fought without also fighting the other. But I suspect most US foreign affairs experts here in the USA see the Jobbik as a greater threat than Fidesz and the leadership of PM Orban. I don’t fully agree with Eva that effectively Jobbik is an effective appendage of Fidesz, but her argument is persuasive.

Brit in Hungary
Guest

Tik tak – I was also surprised by your comments, and I have no sense of HS taking the threat from Jobbik anything other than very seriously. Certainly you ere doing the same as you accuse – focusing on the ‘problems’ with the blog rather than on the problems with jobbik.

spectator
Guest

At the main time as I looking at the above picture I couldn’t miss to notice that these… well… Hungarians looks like mostly inbreed, and mostly wearing clothes with foreign signs on!

Good God!
Even American one!

How comes then that the adorable chairman of our glorious Jobbik dare to appear with them together?
Or this is in reality are a rare occasion of family reunion, and all these brothers have nothing to do with politics otherwise?

As I keep looking at them it seems plausible, indeed!

Nice family, otherwise…

Jani
Guest

Like it was said, Paks 2 will be built.

Janos Lazar settled the issue with Euratom, it was a piece of cake as usual.

Lazar is a person who gets things done. Poor lefties thought they can prevent this and that the EU will prevent Paks 2.

The EU is toothless and does not care.

http://444.hu/2015/03/24/mindenki-megnyugodhat-lazarek-lezsiroztak-mindent-az-euratommal/

spectator
Guest

You may want to revise your vocabulary, dear.

Instead of “poor lefties” you may want to write next time “poor sane and/or sober people” you certainly will!

You know why?
Because one must be a raving idiot and at least tipsy to be glad over that his country being put in debt well over their means for decades to come, while being gobbled up and swallowed by post-communist Russia – as it nothing happened in the last 25 years.

Being enslaved by your own free will in your own country isn’t really something what you have to be particularly proud – but it’s your choice. I only let you know that here, where I live is already 2015.

Just out of curiosity: how about your place?
What age you’re truly living in with such clearly medieval way of thinking?

Webber
Guest

Says Lazar (according to the link you provided). Do you believe him?

Béla
Guest
Why would Lazar lie? If it’s not true, it will be public soon. But the EU has always been a toothless paper tiger with whom compromise is possible. The EU can’t handle one thing: double-crossing. Orban and Lazar now agree to one kind of supply approach and then when plant is built they will amend the agreement and disregard the EU. The EU cannot undo the giant nuclear power plant and nobody other than the Russians will supply the rods because nobody can reliably produce a rod in a plant designed by others, so the Russian will remain. The trick is to placate the EU now (agree to whatever the EU demands) because after he construction the plant will have to be operated even if it is against competition, state subsidy or Euratom rules. The EU can’t come and dismantle or bomb the plant. So Orban gives a shit about the hapless EU bureaucrats, he will agree to everything and build the plant as the Russians want it. I say this without the slightest exaggeration: Lazar and Orban want nothing in this life more than to build Paks 2. As long as this project is alive they can spend literally… Read more »
Webber
Guest

Why would Lazar lie? I don’t know. I’ve asked myself that repeatedly, every time he’s and his colleagues have done it.

MagyarArany
Guest

Even without total integrity, Hungarians must find unity to reject the plots of Paks/Lazar/Orban/Vona.

All other subjects may wait a little longer.

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