The Hungarian opposition remains in disarray

A week ago, on Thursday, the Hungarian opposition parties, with the exception of LMP and Jobbik, got together to discuss the issue of holding a primary election to determine the relative strength of the parties when it comes to choosing candidates for the 106 electoral districts. This is the pet project of Párbeszéd (Dialogue), the latest name of Párbeszéd Magyarországért (PM), whose best-known politicians are Gergely Karácsony, mayor of Zugló (District XIV), and Tímea Szabó. Another small party that embraced the idea was Együtt (Together), the party Gordon Bajnai organized before the 2010 elections. It is led nowadays by Viktor Szigetvári and Péter Juhász. Együtt, despite its name, shows very little inclination to work together with others. Szigetvári and Juhász said they will not be part of any effort to forge a joint campaign against Fidesz. They will go their own way. Depending on which opinion poll one consults, support for Párbeszéd and Együtt among active voters is about 1-2% each.

A week ago Együtt showed up for the first meeting because, as the party leaders explained, they are ready to talk about primary elections, which they consider a good idea, but that’s as far as they’ll go. And indeed, they didn’t attend yesterday’s meeting. Instead, they sent an e-mail informing the others of their decisions.

The opposition leaders on October 23. Népszava optimistically predicted that the opposition's cooperation is imminent / Photo: Ádám Molnár

The opposition leaders on October 23. Népszava optimistically predicted that cooperation among the opposition parties was imminent / Photo: Ádám Molnár

At the negotiating table were some parties and party leaders very few people have ever heard of. I have in mind in particular two tiny parties, both of which can be placed on the far left. The first is the Balpárt, established in 2014 and led by Szilárd Kalmár, a former MSZP member with close ties to Tibor Szanyi, who is known to belong to the left wing of the party. The other relatively unknown entity is Attila Vajnai’s Európai Baloldal-MMP2006 (European Left-Hungarian Workers’ Party 2006), a party that was created from Magyar Munkáspárt (MMP), the unreformed successor of MSZMP. According to the party’s Facebook page, they have 1,818 followers. From the party’s name it is evident that Vajnai’s problem with Gyula Thürmer, chairman of MMP, was Thürmer’s pro-Russian orientation. Moreover, since then, MMP has made a sharp turn to the right. I have encountered Vajnai on the internet and found him to be a surprisingly reasonable, intelligent man.

In addition to these two, the following parties took part in the first round of discussions: Magyar Szocialista Párt (MSZP), Demokratikus Koalíció (DK), Együtt, Párbeszéd, Magyar Liberális Párt, and Modern Magyarország Mozgalom (MoMa/Modern Hungary Movement). After the meeting was over, the parties released a statement saying that “the negotiations were conducted in a constructive atmosphere and the parties agreed to resume the search for solutions” a week later.

And so yesterday the parties, with the exception of Együtt, got together again. Reporters waited outside for news once the negotiations were concluded. But part way through, the delegation of Gábor Fodor’s liberals left. There are two complementary versions of what happened to make the liberals leave the negotiating table. The first is the statement that appeared on the website of the party signed by Anett Bősz, the party spokeswoman. It claimed that Ferenc Gyurcsány stuck to his earlier veto of MLP’s participation. She charged that the negotiations are dominated by Gyurcsány, who accused some people of finding their own positions and parties more important than their homeland. Of course, he meant Gábor Fodor. The other version comes from the spokesman of Párbeszéd, Richárd Barabás, who announced that there was no formal vote. The liberals decided to leave after objections were made to their participation by Gyurcsány and MoMa’s Lajos Bokros.

The source of the dispute lies in Gábor Fodor’s decision to urge his followers to go to the polls and vote “yes” at the referendum as a sign of their determination to vote for Europe. His argument was that boycotting the referendum was a passive act, while his suggestion was a proactive move and therefore more determined and resolute. The other side argued that the referendum question was phrased in such a way that it was almost impossible to vote “yes” and therefore Fodor, wittingly or unwittingly, was assisting Orbán in making the referendum valid. The “yes” votes were just a small fraction of the total valid ballots cast (1.6%) and hence didn’t influence the outcome in an appreciable way. But the suspicion was that Fodor’s real goal was political: to demonstrate the strength of his party through these “yes” votes.

The second party, if you can call it that, that left shortly after the liberals was the Balpárt. It was again Gyurcsány and Bokros who objected to their presence, this time on ideological grounds. Their Wikipedia entry, which I assume was written by the party leadership, says that “the crucial role within the party’s ideology is Marxism but they don’t reject other radical left-wing social democratic directions and their representatives.” Otherwise, they compare themselves to the German Die Linke, the Greek Syriza, and the Portuguese Blocot. From the party’s online newspaper, however, a much less acceptable ideology emerges. They call ’56 “a black exclamation point in the history of the movement of the left.” It was a failure “because our late comrades were incapable of holding fast to the experiment that was launched in Russia in 1917.” In brief, after the Stalinist interlude, the Hungarian communists should have remained faithful followers of the Soviet experiment. I have to assume that Bokros and Gyurcsány also read this and similar writings in the Munkások Újsága (Workers’ Paper).

So, by the end, only MSZP, DK, Párbeszéd, MoMa, and Európai Baloldal-MMP2006 remained at the table.

Yesterday a caller to György Bolgár’s Megbeszéljük (Let’s Talk It Over) program made what I considered a good suggestion. He said that the parties should agree on an independent moderator who would chair these meetings. He suggested Gábor Kuncze, former chairman of SZDSZ. Bolgár subsequently got in touch with Kuncze to ask what he thought of the idea. Kuncze responded that the party leaders wouldn’t be too keen on him. Nor would he be eager to accept such a role. But he thought that direction should be given to the discussions. Without a moderator it is inevitable that one of the stronger personalities, like Gyurcsány, will dominate the discussions. There must be somebody who runs the discussion and insists on the Hungarian version of Robert’s Rules of Order. Unfortunately, I doubt that this idea will float. It’s hard to imagine the participants agreeing to have an outsider chair their discussions or, even if they agreed to this in principle, being of one mind as to who would serve as chair. It’s not the most harmonious lot.

November 4, 2016
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Member

The “opposition” parties in Hungary mean, that they opposed to anyone else being successful in anything, so they appear to be successful, even thought their success is completely self-serving and the results are a big zero.

That is why the Fidesz can do whatever they want and as long as they want to. It will not be political parties that will win agains them, but the anger and drastic actions of the people on the street.
——
P.S. If the history and value system of the people in any society is continuously being destroyed and distorted, sometimes more than twice in the lifetime of an average citizen, the moral and monetary corruption takes over, buys power and a dictatorship forms.

Member

Railroad repair costs.

Belgrade – Budapest (380 km)

467.5 billion HUF Chinese loan (work will be done by Chinese workers)
98.7 to 146 billion in interest
82.5 billion co-payment from from the Hungarian state

http://mno.hu/gazdasag/draga-lesz-a-kinaiak-uzlete-1369735

Bekescsaba – Budapest (210 km)

The European Commission approved 12 billion forints on November 4.
http://ec.europa.eu/hungary/news/20161104-railwaydevelopment_hu

webber
Guest

Correction: These (future) expenditures are not “repair.” They are for new rail lines. China is planning to build a new high-speed rail from the port of Thessalonika (now owned by a Chinese company) to Budapest. If built, it will move freight at super high speeds. It may also handle passenger traffic, but the stress is on freight.

Member

A.
2016-09-10
“China, Serbia, Hungary make progress on Budapest-Belgrade railway deal”

“Further progress was made in realization of the project for the modernization of the Budapest-Belgrade railway.” MODERNIZATION.

http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/business/2016-09/10/content_26759286.htm

B.
2016-10-19
67% stake in the port of Thessaloniki WILL be sold.
The list of potential winners includes a Japanese, a Danish, a Filipino and an Arab (Dubai) company.

http://www.ekathimerini.com/212970/article/ekathimerini/business/thessaloniki-port-sale-will-not-be-split-in-2-packages

C.
2016-04-08
Greece did sell 67% of the port of Piraeus to a Chinese company for $420 million in April 2016.

http://www.wsj.com/articles/greece-signs-deal-to-sell-stake-in-port-of-piraeus-to-chinas-cosco-1460130394

webber
Guest

Yes, I got it wrong – it was Piraeus, not Thessalonika.

But it is a new rail – not “repairs” to an old one.

pappp
Guest

A correction: the “super high speed” you mentioned is 160km/h.

Also Hungarian politicians like to sell a railway project as repair, upgrade (felújítás). It sounds more palatable.

If it was totally new then people would ask why the new expensive railway line when most are rotting away and in deed of repair? So they say it’s a repair, but essentially it’s complete rebuilding, replacement.

There already exists a Szged-Kiskunfélegyháza-Kecskemét-Cegléd-BP line which needs repair and with a new section the Kiskunhals-Bdapest line could be used too. I’m guessing it’s the first line on which Fidesz wants to spend the money, even though there could be other options too since most of the envisaged goods would end up in Western Europe, so would just travel through Hungary.

webber
Guest

You’re right. No matter how it is described, it is a completely new line. You cannot build a fast rail on the existing lines. If you did, you would have to take up everything – all the gravel, everything – and that would, potentially, be more expensive than simply building a parallel line.

Member

The two governments have established a “Chinese-Hungarian Railroad Corporation”, according to announcement of the official news agency MTI at 11 PM (6 PM EDT), November 5

Member
Member

Moody’s upgrade of Hungarian debt:

They expect the debt/GDP to fall to 72.4% in 2017.
(So they accept the Orban government’s “creative” accounting,
which excludes the debt of state-owned banks, among many others.
This is contrary to the opinion of the European Statistical Office)

“Moody’s expects that Hungary’s economic growth will benefit from sizeable EU fund inflows over the next 5 years, equivalent to annual average inflows of around 3% of GDP, one of the highest in Central and Eastern Europe”

“Hungary’s ranking on the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Index dropped to an all-time low of 69th out of 138 countries in 2016, behind its regional peers”

https://www.moodys.com/research/Moodys-upgrades-Hungarys-government-bond-ratings-to-Baa3-stable-outlook–PR_357338

Member

Stable shit.

Member

The all-Fidesz “Media Authority” approved the behavior of the “public” (state) television channels, which pushed only the government propaganda leading to the October 2 referendum.

By law, the public media should be “balanced, impartial and objective”, but the Media Authority thinks this law cannot be enforced.

http://lastdaysm1hirado.tumblr.com/post/152721694320/a-n%C3%A9pszavaz%C3%A1s-el%C5%91tti-p%C3%A9nteken-az-m1-en-fullba-ment

In the news broadcasts, the support for the government’s opinion was:

M1 (“public”) : 91%
TV2 (Vajna < state-owned bank) 83%
ATV (the "only opposition channel"): 65%

RTL: 42%
HírTV: 36% (Simicska, see G-day)

http://comment.blog.hu/2016/11/04/mediatanacs_a_kozmedia_annyi_kormanypropagandat_sugaroz_amennyit_csak_akar

Member

Former banker Speder won a libel case against TV2 yesterday,
but as a result of government pressure, he was forced to sell in the last 3 months:
his bank, his real estate company [to M. Schmidt], his media holdings.

http://444.hu/2016/11/04/pert-nyert-speder-zoltan-a-tv2-ellen-a-lejarato-riportjuk-miatt

There were hopes that he could still hold on to the independence [from Orban] of index.hu, but the likelihood seem to be small now:

http://444.hu/2016/11/04/torlik-speder-parnapos-ceget-a-cegjegyzekbol

Alex Kuli
Guest

Addendum to the 444.hu article:
UPDATE: mégsem.
A birtokunkba jutott végzés szövege alapján nem az újonnan bejegyzett céget, hanem egy névfoglalást töröltek. Erre utal, hogy a fenti közlönyben szereplő cégjegyzékszám negyedik és ötödik karaktere nulla. Tehát: törölték a 01-00-004248/3 számú “cemp-x online” névfoglalást, de ez nem érinti a 01-10-049048 számú, múlt szerdán ténylegesen bejegyzett cemp-x online Zrt.-t.

bimbi
Guest

This performance by the opposition parties puts one in mind of the (somewhat longer) joke about hell. The part for Hungarians consists of a pool of fire and brimstone but without any guards around it on the basis that any one attempting to rescue himself from the torture is immediately pulled back in by his fellow citizens…

… and the blog didn’t even mention the myriad of parties that appeared for the last election each with a name very similar to those in the myriad of opposition parties (and all sponsored for Fidesz election trolls).

How long, Lord, how long?

Member

Conquer and divide, an age old trick. People will never be smart enough to get over it.

Guest

And I’ll just add an old adage… ‘Too many cooks spoil the broth’.
If the parties owned an etterem nobody would get a meal. It would take days to go through the ‘menus’.

What would help perhaps if some had the inclination to be like those hardy tough working dogs who run ‘doggedly’ to keep a herd together as they go every which way getting caught on paths of their own choosing. From the looks of it that job is at a premium in the multi-party universe of Magyarorszag.

Member

IMO, Bokros’ suggestion is undeservedly passed over in scilence. Opposition must find a minimalistic common ground in order to be able to get rid of this regime. No democratic elections are possible while it exists. Period. If opposition recognizes it the next step is natural: find the most successful candidates who can win. No need for balancing in any ways. After a won election they will have to conduct a few selected goals: start impeachments, do some stabilizing, hold democratic elections in 500 (or any midterm) days. These goals are what require to be aggreed on. Whoever is in for it can come.

Member
Guest

The behavior of the Hungarian opposition may be easier to understand and predict if it is realized that it consists of sects and not of parties.

webber
Guest

Együtt is anything but a unifier.

Gabor Toka
Guest
It is probably a sad reflection of how angry some people are at the left that this thread went so much off-topic and that people do not even engage with the article”s fine if subtle analysis. But this anger is partly the result of careful and sustained manipulation by Fidesz – see e.g. the carefully planted “revelation” about the foregone conclusion of these talks that Magyar Idok published this week suggesting that MSZP and Gyurcsany already split up the candidate lists between themselves – and IMHO there is really absolutely nothing in the actual news about these negotiations that would justify that anger. Can you expect faster progress? Not unless you are not a democrat but a believer in the “koki es saller” style of Orban. Is there a reason to finish these talks overnight? No, unless Fidesz calls for early elections. But can you realistically expect an opposition to always have a ready slate of agreed-upon candidates any time during a legislative cycle just in case an unexpected early election is called for? No, unless – once again – you are a believer in the leader handpicking candidates in his country estate “aztan joeccakat”. And is the chance of… Read more »
pappp
Guest
“It is probably a sad reflection of how angry some people are at the left that this thread went so much off-topic and that people do not even engage with the article”s fine if subtle analysis” Good observation. I don’t even think this infighting is the worst of the left’s problems although it adds to its not too attractive image. The situation is worse. There are no clear values and no clear image on the left-wing. To bring a totally different example, one of the reason RTL KLUB is so successful because it has a very clear image and it has a very experienced management which has been building the brand for over 10 years (often 15 or more). Meanwhile TV2 had 5 set of owners in 20 years, countless changes in management and image, and it’s been struggling as a business almost since its inception – of course now that billions of taxpayer money is laundered trough TV2 the new owners have more options to build the brand and make it profitable. But the point is values, image, stakes (cölöpök) are important in the long-term and those are much clearer at Jobbik which has been organically growing for over… Read more »
webber
Guest

Actually, Pappp, you’ve just done what Gabor Toka was upset about – you’ve started excoriating the left (again), when in fact they are starting to do something (as Toka pointed out – read his posg again), and what they are doing is fine. Small steps, toward a goal.

pappp
Guest

I read it, but I have a different take.

I actually think that many people hating Orban and/or sympathetic to the left are not necessarily angry with the left, but simply tuned out. Don’t care. Most readers here I guess think that they should get their act together and only then come but with something intriguing. This is why there was less comment on the article.

But my point is that the problems are deeper than cooperation, electoral maths and the like and on that level (what the hell do they stand for?) I see no changes and no attempts either.

In an interview this week Karácsony Gergely’ master plan to get rid of Orban is waiting for the CIA to topple him and/or hoping that he would fall like the Berlin Fall (unexpectedly, any day now). Meanwhile I’m reading Commandante Daniel (Ortega) is winning his next election at the age of 71 in Nicaragua with something like 70% of the votes.

Gabor Toka
Guest
I think you are unfair with the – indeed not very appealing – left, but I would certainly agree with you that the socialists have for a long time had a problem with clarifying commitments and anchoring them in values and rhetoric that can attract at least some people’s enthusiasm (of course I am skeptical if those values would make you, or me, or both at the same time, happy, but that is besides the point). Blaming Karacsony with the same breadth does not make sense though: he may have no organization and voters but I do not think that you can blame him or say Szolidaritas or Gyurcsany for not making clear value commitments (whether you listen to them and like what they say is a separate and indeed very interesting question, but let’s not avoid that question with populist screaming that they do not stand for anything). But even for the socialists, the values problem is something that they would have had to deal with long before 2010 and I am not sure what they can do now. In this respect (but not others) the situation is very much like 1989: there are some kind of poorly organized… Read more »
pappp
Guest
I think it could be misleading to use historic examples because it’s not the same river at all. The electorate since 1989 significantly changed. For example I think that the electorate now is more in line with traditionally right-wing or conservative values. For example the trends which lead to Trump or Brexit are equally or more pronounced in much of rural Hungary. Although the electorate may have been conservative all along (MSZP used to have socially conservative voters), I think those values are better articulated in the public discourse (which is basically 85% Fidesz-controlled) and people are more articulate about those now than in say 1994 or 2002. You go to rural places and Trianon memorials are absolutely everywhere. The roma issue (I haven’t heard a peep about it from leftists in years other than the human rights narrative) is absolutely on the mind of the rural median voter (even if they won’t raise it in polls). People are very ambivalent about the EU. The nation as opposed to say the population (lakosság which I think Gyula Horn liked to use) as a political concept is central for many. I don’t think it’s a question of fairness to face the… Read more »
webber
Guest

“People are very ambivalent about the EU.”
Wrong. Poll after poll shows the great majority of people are strongly pro-EU – a greater majority than in many W. European countries.
Your comments in general about rural voters are off by a long way.

pappp
Guest

Ambivalence means people may appear pro-EU but at the same time they have strong reservations and denounce it in various issues in private (partly because they expect others will agree). It’s not an unconditional love to say the least.

I am spending time in rural places, I go to places where even in the local ‘hotel’ there is scant internet – you can imagine how much liberal exposure poeple get there (from state TV and radio). If you enquire about local issues, the roma issue (even if it is a “totally Hungarian village”) comes up usually within 2 minutes, I should use a stopwatch. I think it is you who’s way off thinking people in small villages live like people in Budapest.

webber
Guest

You just made a straw man argument – a cheap trick. I did not challenge your statement about Roma, but you act as if I did.

You made a statement about attitudes toward the EU that is simply wrong, and I pointed that out.

Just FYI, the majority of Hungarians live in cities, not villages.

webber
Guest

P.S. Roma are almost universally hated in Hungary – in cities as well as villages (as if you didn’t know that – but given your cheap argument strategies, I thought we should get that out of the way before you act as if I made the opposite argument).

pappp
Guest

There wasn’t any strategy, trick (you are paranoid), it wasn’t clear which argument you thought wasn’t valid for rural Hungary.

webber
Guest

That, too, is completely disingenuous. Stop it. It’s really a cheap trick. Everyone can see my comment above – I specifically reacted to your stupid claim about the EU and said nothing about Roma.

pappp
Guest

“Your comments in general about rural voters are off by a long way.” This is what you wrote. For any sane person this is a general statement about my statements, not just about one particular statement(the EU). Think before writing at least if you can’t stop bickering.

webber
Guest

You are the one who should think before writing, my dear man.
Your comments in general about Hungarian rural voters are WAY off (Look up “in general” if you still don’t understand that).

Guest

Sounds like a case of herding cats and chooks.

Guest
Istvan
Guest

The article “1956 nem a baloldal ünnepe” (1956 is not a celebration of the Left) that Eva cited was immensely interesting. I think the fusion leftists will be a growing force in Europe, what is so fascinating about them is the fact that the anarchists (black block) often are in alliance with them. The article on 1956 was very different than the interpretation given to the 1956 revolution by Trotskyists, and it had the flavor of the autonomous movement about it.

I met several artistic Hungarian anarchists from Budapest who seemed to have viewed the 1956 revolution in a similar way to the article. As the liberal left fragments it’s possible these broad spectrum far left movement will grow based I think largely on a fantastic belief in worker/community/ artist/ women’s etc councils.

bimbi
Guest

OT, but I see that the unemployment rate in the (hated) US of A is at 4,9%.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/11/04/u-s-economy-added-161000-jobs-in-october-as-unemployment-rate-dipped-to-4-9-percent/

Funny That the “Wirtschaftswunder” Magyarorszag which (we are told) is always doing so well can’t get within a mile of such a figure, but instead boasts falling MNB reserves and rampant corruption.

Like I say, “How long, Lord, how long?”

Maude
Guest

Totally OT but interesting idea by Leonid Bershidsky (Bloomberg News):

“Conspiracy theory: If the FBI is anti-Clinton, perhaps it hacked Dem networks, too, and is just using “Russian hackers” for cover?”

Maude
Guest

Nepszava has a long and needless to say totally useless interview with Janos Lazar in which the journalist is essentially asking for money (the good Hungarian word is kuncsorog) from Lazar in the form of state-sponsored advertisement which both Lazar and the journalist acknowledge is really just doling out taxpayer money.

If this is the present/future of Népszava than it’s obviously game over for the left-wing.

If some people naively thought Népszava could remain an opposition paper than they consciously ignored the reality in which Fidesz and the shady leftists (who are playing a theatre show with primary elections) work hand in glove.

Left-wing media in Hungary is over. Get over it.

Orban had this sorted out. The leftist politicians have an assigned role to play in this show and they are acting just as expected. Poor Hungary.

http://nepszava.hu/cikk/1110863

Observer
Guest

Maude
Orban sorts out two things: his power grab and his grand embezzlement .
The rest like economy, education , health care, innovation & development, etc are going. You are going down (unless you’re at the throw too).

Guest

Just trying to count the parties on the left and understand their special positions gave me the creeps.

Seems to me that whenever someone “on the left” in Hungary doesn’t agree with his party’s majority -he goes and founds a new party …

That’s not the idea of democracy – compromises are sometimes (or rather often …) difficult but necessary! And competition means also cooperation.

To give an example from Germany:
We Schwabs now have a coalition government with Greens (major partner) and Christian Democrats (CDU, minor partner) and it seems to work.

Who would have thought that 30 years ago?

PS:

How many are there? ten or a dozen?

Member

Among the 33 richest people in Hungary, several can thank his entire wealth to Orban [and to the complacent Hungarian & EU taxpayers]

Lőrinc Mészáros: 35.4
Andrew Vajna 44.9
István Garancsi 45.8
Lajos Simicska 55.8
László Szíjj 119.3 billion HUF

There are at least two people, who became oligarchs on their own, but benefited tremendously with their relationship with Orban.

Gábor Széles: 136.8
Sándor Csányi: 283.1 billion HUF

There might be more Orban-created oligarchs within or outside this list, please feel free to add names !

http://forbes.hu/extra/33-leggazdagabb-magyar-2016/

Maude
Guest

And how many of them used to serve at or reported to III/III or III/II or whatever Ministry of Interior department it was?

Observer
Guest

Good point – Orban likes the communists and the political secret police stooges that sucked up to him. He just made a former 3.3 Dept operative undersecretary of the Interior Affairs.
Beat that.

Member

Matolcsy also set aside 270+ billion of public money to play and spend as he wishes.

Member

Let us calculate conservatively.

In 5 years (2011-2015), the EU sent 27.667 billion euros to help the Hungarian economy. If the Fidesz oligarchs and mid-level fideszniks stole/overcharged only 20% of it, that is 5.533 billion euros, or about 1600 to 1700 billion forints

Observer
Guest

Tappancs

Your calculations of 1% GDP are very conservative:

1. The kickbacks are much higher – I’ve never heard/read of anything less than 30%, e.g. the current Budapest 3. subway line bids, says the Fidesz Mayor Tarlos, are so impossibly high, that they jeopardize the project.

2. The public money is diverted to ruling party “clients” in EVERY gov spending: e.g. school book publishing, hospitals or schools supplies, huge government advertising, thousands of plagiarized/silly/useless “studies”, 100 billion Ft residential bond profits, thousands of advisory/consultant jobs, etc.

My estimate is that 1.8-2% of GDP were embezzled (cumulative word) in 2014-2016.

Member

In an interview, the chairman of the MSzP (Socialist Party) Gyula Molnár did not oppose the idea that his party could dissolve itself after the 2018 election !

Is he in the hands of Pol Pot ? How can he be so wimpish ?

http://hirtv.hu/ahirtvhirei/egy-ujabb-bukas-az-mszp-veget-jelentene-a-partelnok-nem-cafolt-1369992

Member

On Feb 18, 2015 12:21 PM, “Joel Benenson” wrote:
Sorry to be clear – foundation stops — means stop taking foreign gov’t money. Is that possible? If not we’re going to be very vulnerable on that throughout and I think our opponents and some on our side will say at is unseemly for a potential U.S. President taking money from foreign governments for her private foundation.

https://wikileaks.org/podesta-emails/emailid/41562

Member

https://wikileaks.org/podesta-emails/emailid/40193

2016-02-21 00:51

““Our multicultural society is a colossal failure.” That came out of the mouth of Angela Merkel in 2004. And now she is hailing the next tidal wave of Muslim no-hopers as the best thing since sliced bread…….. It’s difficult NOT to picture Merkel in the padded-cell section of a funny farm under heavy sedation and in an industrial-strength straitjacket. Time was when it took a goodly number of nukes to wipe out Europe. All you need now is one Blöde Kuh with a Wiedergutmachung complex. Over 7 million Muslim misfit migrants – including much-overlooked straggling family members – have already grabbed a place at the German welfare trough, and that’s just the beginning of the end. So says a pretty much hushed-up government estimate. On top of that comes Angelic Turkey, whose citizens will be swamping Germany – first as visa holders and then as EU residents. Germany’s saddo satellite states will serve as overspill areas, having become part of Mushrooming Merkelstan.”

Member
“In 2010, Hungarians elected a rightist party, Fidesz, that immediately set about writing a new constitution, shackling the media and restricting opposition parties and civil society. The anti-democratic trend was more than a far-off concern because Hungary was about to take its turn at the helm of the E.U. presidency in 2011. And it was alarming because the country was a NATO member that had been on a democratic path and now seemed to be drifting into Moscow’s orbit. Clinton traveled to Hungary in June 2011, intending to share American concerns. As was her custom, she asked the embassy to gather members of civil society groups for a meeting. Ambassador Eleni Kounalakis and her staff arranged to bring in Hungarian journalists, lawyers and rights activists, who talked about how they had been systematically shut out of national decision making. “Secretary Clinton listened intently,” Kounalakis recalls. “Then she asked the group what they were going to do about it.” The democratic-minded Hungarians were stunned. The sympathetic, nodding face of the superpower had raised their hopes that the Americans might take a robust role in supporting their cause. (The failure of the Eisenhower administration to support the anti-Communist Hungarian uprising in 1956… Read more »
Member

“Clinton used soft power and personal clout to help push back on an authoritarian regime. It didn’t work, but it seems unlikely that any secretary of state would have had better luck. The U.S. was no more willing to use force than Eisenhower was almost 60 years ago, and there was no support from allies for sanctions. The episode illuminates the limits of U.S. power in the 21st century, and it shows Clinton doing the best she could with a very weak hand.”

pappp
Guest

Isn’t this from Kounalakis’ book? In any case, I really don’t understand the person narrating the story.

What else could the Secretary of State do then ask what are you gonna do about it (Orban)? The US can’t be expected to intervene like it did in Iraq.

If those invited activists had said yes, we have planned this and that down to the minutest of details then she might have said OK, we maybe able to work together (NB it would be a felony for a Hungarian citizen to cooperate with foreign state organizations, but let’s say it would be done via a private American proxy).

If Clinton had rejected the detailed plans of the activists I could understand the stunned faces or rather the disappointed faces, that would be indeed disappointing.

But nobody in their right mind could expect a foreign government to come up with a plan to get rid of Orban. Such matters except for all out wars are always done via local participants. Locals have to do the fighting and the hard work, foreigners can only assist here and there.

Guest

Re Hungarians feelings towards the EU – I’ll simplify them:

We’re in it only for the money!

Yes, they like the free travel, the ready availability of everything from other countries (remember Magyar Narancs?) and most of it they like the subsidies.

But they (or at least many of them …) don’t like the responsibilities, the antidiscrimination laws etc.

Maybe Hungary is not ready yet to be a real democracy? You know:
Liberté, fraternité, egalité?

PS:
My Hungarian wife thinks like me – she’s very disappointed about her compatriot’s feeling/beliefs …

webber
Guest

Wolfi, don’t believe Hungarian r-wing nonsense spouted here by people who should know better (who do know better!)
FYI, a higher percentage of Hungarians (61%) have a positive view of the EU than the European average. Indeed, a higher percentage of Hungarians have a positive view than of Germans (50% – charts in links below)
If there were a referendum on leaving the EU in Hungary, Hungarians would vote overwhelmingly against it – and this despite Fidesz propaganda that denigrates the EU day in and day out (more evidence, as if it were needed, that the majority of Hungarians do not believe the propaganda).
Only Poles have a more favorable view of the EU than Hungarians.
http://www.pewglobal.org/2016/06/07/euroskepticism-beyond-brexit/pm_2016-06-07_brexit-01/

http://www.pewglobal.org/2016/06/07/euroskepticism-beyond-brexit/brexit-lede-graphic-web-version/

pappp
Guest

Webber: to repeat it (even though I’m not sure you meant me), I said people are ambivalent about the EU. In 2004 just before accession most people were really enthusiastic about the EU just as they were about capitalism/democracy in 1990. Things have changed. An average number like 60% for, or 50 % against masks a very complex situation. In rural Hungary I encountered a lot of dislike and criticism of the EU (more than what I would be expecting from such poll figures) – these people may after all vote for remain (if there was such a referendum), but in private they are very vocal about disliking the EU. In my experience, they also tend to dislike Budapest, fyi. Just as – I’m guessing – mentioning D.C. would not elicit elation from rural West Virginians.

webber
Guest

You repeat nonsense. Let me guess- you are a senior Hungarian academic who is no longer used to people challenging you when you say stupid things?

webber
Guest

Which part of the data above do you not understand? A greater percentage of Hungarians are pro-Eu than of Germans. “Ambivalent” – where is the data? There is none. You are making it up, again.

pappp
Guest
OK, I try to explain it again. It’s not easy to grasp, I know. In rural West Virginia people don’t want to secede from the US, but they sure hate the (out of control) federal government. Now do these people like the US or not? I would say they love their country and want to be part of the union, but they viscerally hate the current state of the union and its political elite residing in far away DC. Similarly, the majority of Hungarians may like or desire being part of the EU (maybe for pragmatic reasons maybe because of its values) but they are also very critical about it. One of the points I was trying to make is that the feelings towards such a thing as the EU are complex and so it is difficult to reduce the feelings into a binary pro or con option. Also just because 60% of the people conclude that they rather be part of the EU doesn’t mean that all of that 60% (not to mention the 40%) uncritically adore the EU. Most of that 60% probably just figures that on balance being part is better then being outside of it. So… Read more »
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