Viktor Orbán’s latest foray against European values

Yesterday Fidesz held its twenty-sixth congress. Almost 2,000 delegates gathered, and they voted almost unanimously to reelect Viktor Orbán as chairman. They also elected four deputy chairmen: the 34-year-old Gergely Gulyás, whose career has been spectacular in the last five years; Gábor Kubatov, the campaign manager of the 2010 election; Szilárd Németh, the government spokesman for lower utility prices; and Mrs. Pelcz, née Ildikó Gáll, the token woman who has been safely tucked away in the European Parliament ever since 2010. All of them ran unopposed.

The speakers, headed by Viktor Orbán himself, found everything absolutely perfect in the country that they lead with great expertise and self-assurance. They are brave politicians who are able to achieve things other people would find impossible. In fact, according to Orbán, “bravery is the most important thing in life. It is said that a coward cannot be happy. So, in a way, freedom is really the right to be brave.” Don’t ask me to analyze the logic of these sentences.

Since by now Viktor Orbán cannot come out with too many fresh ideas and for the most part just rehashes his old pearls of wisdom about the bright future of his imaginary world, I will concentrate on only a few crucial passages.

A fair amount of time was devoted to the migrant crisis. He maintained that all western politicians are idiots and that he is the only man who had the guts to act, not asking anybody’s permission. The result is total victory. The rest of Europe is a “battlefield” while Hungary is the land of stability and peace. Yes, we’ve heard that before. What, on the other hand, was new was his analysis of the spirit that has taken over European thinking.

The European spirit and its people believe in superficial, secondary things, such as human rights, progress, openness, new kinds of families, and toleration…. These are nice and amiable things but really only secondary ones because they are only derivatives…. Europe doesn’t believe in Christianity, in common sense, in military virtues, and doesn’t believe in national pride.

Well, this is at least brutally honest talk. The politicians who consider all those “derivative” things to be the bedrock of the European Union should realize that none of the virtues they cherish means anything to Viktor Orbán, who dismisses them in favor of more “fundamental” principles, such as military virtues.

Another passage in Orbán’s speech also merits consideration. It is about the idea of a United States of Europe.

Europe is an old but fertile continent that survived many frightening ideas. Some of these caused great harm, in fact, tragedy…. When Europe turned out to be weak and couldn’t resist mad ideas. For example, it was unable to oppose the idea, which was planted into people’s heads, that mankind can be categorized by race. Thus Europe became the home of national socialism. It couldn’t resist the idea that people should be divided up by their social origin and that all people should be transformed into homo sovieticus. Thus, Europe became the home of the ideology of class warfare and communism. All this today seems absurd, but, my friends, in those days it didn’t seem absurd. Serious people with serious countenances, believing in their moral superiority, wrote a library full of books on these subjects. Today I again see a whole army of serious people with serious countenances who, convinced of their moral superiority, want to disparage the nation states of Europe and campaign for a United States of Europe. Trouble is waiting for us.

In brief, the dangers lurking behind a tighter constitutional arrangement for the member states of the European Union can be compared only to the disasters Hitler’s national socialism and the Soviet Union’s communist experiment brought to the world.

Some people on the internet already design the flag. Here is one of the many

Some people on the internet have already proposed designs for the flag of a United States of Europe. Here is one of the many.

I would like to quote one more sentence from this long speech that might be of some interest. “European liberal politics by today has turned against freedom and therefore has inevitably come up against the people and against democracy. What was formerly liberal democracy has become non-democratic liberalism.”

These are the ideas that are being transmitted, often in a simplified, even more incendiary form, via the Fidesz propaganda machine to the population. Magyar Idők, the government mouthpiece, specializes in the genre. I could easily find hundreds of examples but I picked an editorial by Dávid Megyeri titled “Tragicomedy: Migration game without borders,” which appeared in the Saturday issue of the paper. This article is an excellent example of where Viktor Orbán’s demagoguery leads: to gutter journalism.

The article is mostly about Martin Schulz, president of the European Parliament, who is described as an uneducated man who, despite many tries, couldn’t even matriculate from high school. Not only is he ignorant, he also shows signs of psychopathological disorders. What are the telltale signs of these disorders? Schulz considers the behavior of some of the member states, in the middle of a serious European crisis, injurious to the stability of Europe. Although for most of us Schulz’s observation is self-evident, for a devoted Viktor Orbán fan this is an unforgivable sin. And by the end of the article we learn that it is actually in Germany’s interest to eliminate nation states since it is Berlin that “considers the whole European Union its own nation state. Just as in the olden days when the great Russian Empire nicknamed the Soviet Union ruled over the forced marriage of [the Central European countries]. They are the models of Merkel.”

Here one finds bits and pieces of Viktor Orbán’s primitive ideas further simplified and distorted. Orbán’s attacks on Merkel and his equation of communism with the United States of Europe fuse into incomprehensible nonsense. Unfortunately, however primitive we find all this, it seems to work with an awful lot of people.

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I can’t help recalling the hard to translate “félművelt felcsúti félcigány” ( half educated, half-gypsy village boy). I apologize to the gypsies who bear no evil, as opposed to this character.

The quote of the secondary and primary values drivel leaves no doubt where he stands, i.e. firmly in a kind of Fascist Disney Land, which however is not so funny for the inhabitants.
Knowledge and experience fail me as I’m trying to grasp how is it possible for such characters to find any significant support, let alone to be voted into power.


Observer: This is a racist disgusting comment. You are not different from any other racist Jobbik or Fidesz supporters.

fuck off

Hungary is for Hungarians you fuck


Don’t hold back. FO?

Say what you mean.


I realize this element, hesitated to use it and included an apology. This sounds different in Hungary and so used would be extremely offensive to any Fidesz faithful. This is why I used it.


“Knowledge and experience fail me as I’m trying to grasp how is it possible for such characters to find any significant support, let alone to be voted into power.”


How would it benefit the Hungarian Economy if Orban would open the fences?
Is there a possibility that young Hungarians could return to Hungary (job creation due to mass incoming migration), and how would it benefit them? What jobs would be created (apart from building accommodations, creating educational institutions etc.? How would those migrants integrate into the small Hungarian society? What if they can’t integrate? Hungary is a very small country, creating ghettos could be disastrous etc. etc.

These could be the questions that people on “the lower end of society”(as per Petofi calling me previously) most probably would kindly want to know.


Well, it’s quite possible that these migrants could create opportunities that might employe you… But don’t worry, most of the migrants aren’t interested in Hungary for the same reasons as the young Hungarians are very unlikely to return.


LwwiH –
Is that so? In this case, Hungary could be chosen as a transit country ONLY. And what jobs (apart from rubbish collection after the passing influx of refugees/migrants ) do you have in mind for the Hungarians? (Since you are painting a future when there is no hope for Hungarians to ever return.)


Your are totally right about the rubbish collection left behind. It certainly seems that the respecting the thousand year Christian traditions and Hungarian values for our MP means to leave the rubbish to others to carry. It was not the refugees, but they may seen the pictures, and they wanted to fit in.comment image


LwwiH didn’t paint a future in which there is no hope for Hungarians to ever return. This government is painting that future and has been since 2010 when the number of Hungarians leaving Hungary began to rise dramatically (perhaps 1/2 m. have now left Hungary).
That refugees do not want to settle in Hungary is a simple fact. LwwiiH is not responsible for that, either. S/he just told you the truth about refugees. You see, before the wall was built, they were just passing through Hungary on their way to Germany. None of them wanted to stay in Hungary.
Think about it *- why would refugees want to stay in Hungary when Hungarians, too, are leaving because of miserable conditions? (conditions sustained by the current government).
Again, may I suggest you move to Hungary? You don’t understand some basic things that every Hungarian can see and experience personally every day, and perhaps this is why you regularly make comments that seem outrageous or foolish (such as the above).
You clearly like this Hungarian government, so moving back should be easy for you. Also, whatever currency you have in the bank will go a long way in Hungary. Just move to Hungary.


Webber –
I met many Hungarians who left the country during the previous governments. This wasn’t Gyurcsany’s fault and I don’t believe that the present government should be blamed for that. The situation is much more serious.
Please do not pussy foot around my questions. I’m seriously concerned about the future of Hungary.


Please don’t pussy foot around my suggestion that you move to Hungary.
Your questions are for the government of Hungary and nobody else.
Unless, that is, you think I have a bunch of jobs in my pocket to distribute to anyone I like.
People leaving Hungary – they have not left the country at this great rate since 1956. There is no comparison here with the Gyurcsany period. Migration by Hungarians from Hungary in those years was incomparably lower than it is now.



“And what jobs (apart from rubbish collection after the passing influx of refugees/migrants ) do you have in mind for the Hungarians? “

Every post you post betrays your latent xenophobia; your antisemitism and your ignorance. Encouraged by Extor

And yet you enlist your God and sickly ‘love’ for solutions.

All you espouse conflicts with the humanity of the bible – as I understand it. And certainly against the compassionate tenets of Christianity. You are are cold heartless religious bigot.

You are a nasty person and I agree that you should stay – I can’t believe that such people exist – even Hungarians – some of whom I’ve come across. Your posts are exemplars for everyone who can’t believe the nastiness and ignorance.

Yes, ignore the trolls – but tolerate them until they realise the strength of the tsunami of good against everyone of your unwanted contributions.

Yes, stay – but try and curb the nasty – although I doubt you can.


And of course – why would any refugee want to stay in your country(?) after the treatment meted out to therm?

You don’t understand how workers are pure GDP. But Orban doesn’t understand either – you have 10% of Hungarians sitting around doing nothing -10% Hungarians! Persecuted, ghettoised, discriminated – and murdered.

Oh yeah! A Christian country persecuting Hungarian Roma – because you’ve nearly run out of Jews. Just 48,000 left from a 1941 population of 840,000.

Orban wishes he could share out the Hungarian Roma throughout Europe. But don’t worry they’re going of their own accord. Very few claim themselves ‘Hungarian’ because of the way they are treated.

Which begs the question. Why would a refugee stay? Orban knows.

And we know.

Yeah such a Christian country.


Thank goodness, we have compassionate Hungarians, Christians, Calvinist and Jews who d understand what the bible is about, what compassion means, and do not put their personal agenda ahead of their morals. I am so sorry that I forgot the contributor’s name who posted his personal experiences at the Keleti Railway Station, and others who also helped out and posted here, but these are the people who leave real hope for Hungary, not the greedy, selfish, “how about me and my made-up values” kind of beings. It’s beyond me how seemingly intelligent people have no will to face the real facts about how Hungary is being robbed by this government. The stadiums, the non-funded hospitals, the stolen and no-more existent private retirement savings, the restoration of nazi symbols are just not enough to these people to say “Hold on, something maybe is not right. People lining up for free food for hours while our leaders leave in properties that they do not claim, their families and friends getting super rich..”comment image

Yes Some1 Here it is – I think I need to repost it to convince myself that there are some truly good people in ‘Christian’ Hungary. – However I’m not sure she (I’ve assumed a ‘she’ from the way she writes – but prepared to be wrong!) is a Hungarian. She writes unusually well in English! She might be a nurse. I often copy notable posts just to keep myself sane when up against ‘religious bigots’, for example. Richard Field’s Posts are also in my ‘collection’. Anyway – it’s worth another read – even if on the narrow! An Aid Worker Éva, thank you for this very clear and concise article, delineating what we actually know versus what we’re being told. I worked as a primary organiser of relief efforts at Keleti from roughly the beginning of the arrival of refugees there, until the day the whole operation was shut down and the border (effectively) closed. I dealt with untold thousands of refugees, providing food, water, tickets, bedding, tents and so on. I arranged medical care for many. Generally, I worked eighteen-hour days, and in more than two months, I took just one day off. Due to exhaustion! I remember… Read more »

CharlieH & Wolfi –
How about debating without personal attacks! Why is it so important for you to humiliate those, who don’t agree with you?
Or, can it be that you are unable to answer my DIRECT questions?
You are being very touchy and irrational.
Using the “attack dog” approach again?
Please understand, you are NOT humiliating me . You are humiliating yourselves.
Is there a possibility that perhaps I have too much style for you to handle, CharlieH?
Is there a possibility that you might be a misogynist? Frankly, I have never been addressed with this type of gutter approach in my life. I can almost touch your deep hatred on my tablet. PFUJ!


Everybody has a purpose in life – latefor’s is to serve as a deterrent example.
Remember when she wrote someting like “The vast majority of Hungarians adores Orbán”?
She’s funny in a way …

I am really not clear at all what PM Orban was trying to get at when he said Europe doesn’t believe in military virtue. I thought possibly it was some kind of a word play on katonai erény. I can’t understand how that can be, so I have concluded that PM Orban doesn’t understand what the actual concept of military virtue means as it has come down to us in the west from the Latin militari virtute. In general the components of the concept are loyalty, competence, selflessness, integrity, and pride. These are not particularly Hungarian traits, or for that matter American traits generally. But it is a framework that is attempted to be instilled in cadets at West Point the US Army’s elite officer training university. I suspect PM Orban is confusing military virtue with martial spirit which in Japanese is called “budo.” and I think in Hungarian is harci szellemet (fighting spirt). That phrase would be more consistent with PM Orban’s repeated covert references to the West becoming less manly as compared to Hungary or his hero Putin’s Russia. Possibly this takes us full circle to the social psychological discussion that took place the other day on this… Read more »
Lutra lutra

This is the same Orbán who said on more than one occasion that doing his military service was the most miserable time of his life, right? The same one who didn’t point out that “do as I say, not as I do” still seems to be a very European value and one that he subscribes to 100%


Sorry for the American partisan comment, but it’s appalling how similar these passages are to those of the ultraconservative right in the US. Do Fidesz and some of the Tea Party copy the content, the arguments and the style literally from each other?


I understand that the article focuses on Orban, but I must mention what Laszlo Kover, the Speaker of the House said.

“we know what we want and what not”. “We do not want the open society from the Soros kinds”, “we do not want gender craziness”, and neither that Hungary would turn into a futureless society, where “man hating women” and “feminine men” only see children and families as obstacles to their self-fulfillment.
“We want our daughters to consider their highest level of self-fulfillment when they bore grandchildren for us.”

There is now a campaign going on: women are sending their negative pregnancy tests to Kövér. Meanwhile, Kövér – as demonstrated by his interview to Népszabadság, – still just doesn’t get it. “I think that there can be no more beautiful mission for a woman [than giving birth to children]. Just like for myself as a father, as a man, there is no more beautiful mission – not even the position of the Chairman of the Parliament, in my view – than to participate as a father in the upbringing of three children.” In other words, Kövér has completely forgotten that his words were about gender roles: women must produce children, whereas men must “be men”, whatever that means. (It seems that Kövér has misunderstood the poem by Attila József from which he quoted a line: “Be what you would be, a man. Grass will grow after you.” In fact, in this verse the poet is addressing himself and encouraging himself to commit suicide.) In this interview, furthermore, Kövér also blames “this way of thinking” [that is, failing to see reproduction as a human being’s or a woman’s primary task] for “the massive migration, the bringing in of immigrants… Read more »
Michael Kaplan

I am a long time friend of Hungary, especially given my family of origin( on my mother’s side), Jewish Hungarian. I don’t trust Prime Minister Orban. He is a strange creature, building the odd monument to Hungary as a victim of Hitler when it was Hungarians who deported their fellow Jewish Hungarians and/or honoring some old Hungarian fascists. Now Orban wishes to forget all of this and really teach history! I have seen almost everything since first visiting Hungary in 1976 and witnessing the misrule of communism etc. The Hungarian fascists were already-unfortunately- well known to me. Is there no hope for this talented nation? Michael (Miska) Portland, Oregon USA


@ Kaplan
“this talented nation” is an interesting point.

You can hear from a little fascist that the Hungarians are an exceptionally talented l nation counting now 13 Nobel pŰPrize winners.
On another occasion the same dud will use the word “Jew” with a hateful slant (current special target G.Sorsos) completely forgetting that all but one Nobel Prize winners were Jewish. In addition, all but one reached their success after they left, or were forced to leave Hungary.

And no, there is no hope, but in a deus ex machina case.


Hungarian Jews – overwhelmingly descendants of 18th and 19th century immigrants from Galicia and Moravia – used to be a superlatively smart, energetic and talented bunch, the kind of people who step into a revolving door after you, but step out before you.

Unfortunately, the remnants of people of Jewish descent in Hungary today, with very few exceptions, had largely managed to assimilate to their non-Jewish compatriots also in the characteristic non-Jewish Hungarian traits of lack of smarts, lack of energy and lack of talent (Pató pál úr anyone?).



@michael kaplan

No Miska, there is no hope for Hungary and it’s people.

At least for now.


“secondary things, such as human rights, progress, openness, new kinds of families, and toleration”
Did he really say this?
Human rights are secondary – to what?


He did say it and more, hence my OMG!

These are really secondary in his regime. And he already doesn’t even try to pretend.

Pretty disturbing to read that ‘human rights, openness, progress, and tolerance’ are ‘superficial things’ Maybe soon they’ll be a thing of the past, too. The scary thing is, these ideas (especially intolerance) are sinking in to the younger generation. At the last parents’ evening at my daughter’s school, there was a big discussion about the behaviour of some of the children. They have taken to insulting each other with comments like ‘You stupid immigrant’ and ‘You migrant’ In other words, ‘migrant’ is a very negative word. I know the parents are lovely, open minded people, so I’m sure they are not getting these ideas from home. However, if you just take a look at the wider society, you’ll see plenty of examples of fear, paranoia and intolerance regarding immigration . Whether from the radio, TV, billboards or those ubiquitous stands where you can sign the anti-immigration petitions, children are getting a very powerful message that we are under threat, and that immigrants are bad people. How else can 9 year old children come out with this stuff!? Luckily, this particular class wants to address this problem. As parents we have to educate our children and teach them the values of… Read more »

Thank you Nicky!
I had similar feelings when reading this.

Re the status of immigrants/refugees:
Whenever I hear someone talking negatively about them I try to bring up the late Steve Jobs and then I ask them:
Do you know who is the father of Steve Jobs (afaik he’s still living in Reno, Nevada)?
Usually they don’t know and then I tell them:
He is a Syrian immigrant who got a Catholic student pregnant – she had to give up the child for adoption by the Jobs family …
That often silences them!

It’s enough to make one despair for Hungary, that one-time shining star of Central Europe…. I agree to a limited extent with Latefor… action, reaction, action, reaction…. This is the game that Viktor Orban is playing with Hungary. First, dividing it into us and them, whether through a constitution that creates a Christian “us” and everyone else, or through the demonizing of all those that do not support Fidesz as being against the Hungarian nation, or pitting the Hungarian “nation” against the rest of Europe… etc. And then moving forward to provoke a reaction, which he can use to bolster his populist “victim” psychology by claiming that “we” are being attacked again by the evil “them” and then using every “reaction” in that cycle of action, reaction, action, reaction to moan and whine and draw on the blind support of his followers who want someone strong to defend victimized Hungary against these unwarranted (as the mayor of Székesfehérvár put it) attacks. And yet, each of Orbán’s actions is in fact a blow to Hungary… dividing its diverse population, keeping its wages low, destroying its educational system, destroying its medical system, increasing the vitriol in public debate, syphoning off money from… Read more »

After reading Orban’s remarks I think if anyone has any modicum of a feel for democracy, human rights, free speech, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness their feeling would be one of viscerally being attacked. Arguably he is like a Trump around here popping off and calling it like it supposedly is…in everyone’s face. With Trump I could hear the refrain, ‘Dump the Trump’. With Orban the refrain goes, ‘Dump the chump….democracy’.

Orban , with the rest of ‘Jobbik Lite’, is on a grave sabotaging mission
to the current setup in Europe. He can only get away with the talk because of the haplessness of the EU who just seem to have lost confidence.

Orban with his ‘anti-establishment’ thought against the European political grain reminds me of that 60’s ‘love’ generation. On the surface all ‘peace, love and understanding’. But underneath it colored a stupidity and unreality of dealing with problems of society and the world. Strange bedfellows resulted. Europe, with Orban , harbors an unsettling future. I hope the EU and the US us on the ball and taking measure.




Today between the hours of 4:00 pm and 5:00 pm EST (New York time) we will test a registration based comment feature. Comments will be limited to those who register via wordpress, Facebook, etc. It is just for an hour. It would be great if you could come back and comment, so we would see how it works. After the test we will turn back everything and Eva will decide what’s next…