31 votes

Hungary Is Lost

12 comments

  1. szferi
    Link
    I would argue - living through the modern history of Hungary since the "method change" - that Hungary never was and still not a real democracy. Mainly because there were never good independent...

    I would argue - living through the modern history of Hungary since the "method change" - that Hungary never was and still not a real democracy. Mainly because there were never good independent institutions and civil society. Therefore, democracy cannot be dead in Hungary since never was born. Nevertheless, the recent autocratic tendencies are the worst of all the times I lived through. For example, I personally was threaded by the current regime because I was chairman of the board of a foundation which was listed on an unfamous "Soros bérenc" list and unlawfully questioned by authorities. I fought back with legal technique and I won in an extent that they instead focused their threatening effort for the organizations which had a weaker legal war chest. Since then I try to minimize my interaction to the Hungarian society as much as possible even though I physically still living there because of my family obligations.
    Having said that, I think the main driver of the current events is that they feel real existential threat that and even more integrated EU might pose to smaller countries like Hungary. Whether this treat is realistic or not (I don't think and even if it is that the current strategy is not the winning one to mitigate this risk) it does not matter because it allows to position and dictate the public discourse.
    I think however that as most of the time during history the economic effects of the current political strategy will dictate the faith of the current rules. And that for I'm optimistic that this period will end since it won't be able to provide long term sustainable growth especially for their own voting bases. That is the curse of populism in general. They are not really good at increasing and dividing the economic pie. Therefore, I believe Hungary won't lost forever.

    14 votes
  2. [5]
    dubteedub
    Link
    I shared a previous article on Hungary back in September of last year titled "It happened there: how democracy died in Hungary" and had some push back from some members of this community that felt...

    I shared a previous article on Hungary back in September of last year titled "It happened there: how democracy died in Hungary" and had some push back from some members of this community that felt that it was an exaggeration of the facts or that it lacked appropriate historical context.

    I am very interested in any thoughts on this piece given it takes great pains to put the current authortarian decline of Hungary in context of a broader historical division / "national grievance."

    9 votes
    1. [2]
      Loire
      Link Parent
      Very chilling similarities to the current situation in the United States and a very effective case study in the death of a democracy. Don't worry about those calling it an exaggeration. They are...

      Very chilling similarities to the current situation in the United States and a very effective case study in the death of a democracy.

      Don't worry about those calling it an exaggeration. They are either ignorantly enabling the fascist take over, or arguing in bad faith. There is a world wide concentrated effort to destabilize democracies and push neo-fascism. You are not over exaggerating, you are not imagining it, you are not over reacting.

      Apathy is their weapon.

      10 votes
      1. nothis
        Link Parent
        Yea, the fact that this is a global development makes me feel claustrophobic. You can't escape it. It's the same story, with slight local flavor, in the US, in the UK, in Italy, in Austria, in...

        Very chilling similarities to the current situation in the United States

        Yea, the fact that this is a global development makes me feel claustrophobic. You can't escape it. It's the same story, with slight local flavor, in the US, in the UK, in Italy, in Austria, in Hungary (and most smaller European countries, in various stages), in Turkey, in the Philippines, in Russia. Germany got the AFD, which is still small but a shock considering how fast it grew out of nowhere. I know very little about South America but articles like this one make it seem they follow the same trend. Whenever you read of an election, it's a "strong", narcissistic, right-wing leader who promises to smash the status quo to pieces to bring back patriotic pride and prosperity to his nation. If a war broke out, what side would I even want to be on?

        9 votes
    2. Grzmot
      Link Parent
      Nice to see a quality German newspaper on Tildes. A lot of local, very good reporting often goes ignored because it's not available in English, which is sad. Regarding the article itself, Orbán...

      Nice to see a quality German newspaper on Tildes. A lot of local, very good reporting often goes ignored because it's not available in English, which is sad.

      Regarding the article itself, Orbán isn't really doing anything new per se, he's just using standard moves out of the fascist playbook. Sadly, the way it's going I don't see it reversing any soon as the EU is mostly occupied with the Brexit chaos and the states surrounding Hungary aren't interested in reporting against their government.

      5 votes
    3. Abrown
      Link Parent
      Here's another related article I saved a while back about Hungary and a few other countries that went down this path and how things have worked out for them (or rather, haven't worked out):...

      Here's another related article I saved a while back about Hungary and a few other countries that went down this path and how things have worked out for them (or rather, haven't worked out): https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/posteverything/wp/2018/11/16/feature/unfixable-several-nations-have-tried-to-restore-democracy-after-populist-strongmen-it-was-never-the-same/

      2 votes
  3. Bal
    Link
    As a Hungarian, this is accurate and terribly depressing.

    As a Hungarian, this is accurate and terribly depressing.

    5 votes
  4. [2]
    Arshan
    Link
    From my fairly weak understanding of the EU, I know that for the EU to be able to challenge these anti-democratic moves, the EU requires a unanimous vote by all members. Poland and Hungary, at...

    From my fairly weak understanding of the EU, I know that for the EU to be able to challenge these anti-democratic moves, the EU requires a unanimous vote by all members. Poland and Hungary, at least a few years ago, had some form of an alliance to prevent either from being reprimanded by the EU. I've always consider that an extremely questionable design choice; unanimous decision just don't happen.

    4 votes
    1. vektor
      Link Parent
      The EU is full of these kinds of things. Parliament seats are distributed degressively, i.e. smaller countries are overrepresented. Similarly, every country gets one veto and one council seat. As...

      The EU is full of these kinds of things. Parliament seats are distributed degressively, i.e. smaller countries are overrepresented. Similarly, every country gets one veto and one council seat. As a german, my vote counts the least among all EU citizens and yet everyone and their mother tells us we're dictating political decisions? Should we maybe get the old germany back? Is that what they want? Cause then my vote will count more.

      I get why it was put in place - to convince smaller countries to join by assuring them they won't just be overruled. But the german federal states get along fine as well. Probably something about national identities in the end. Sometimes decisions unpopular with one individual must be made.

      3 votes
  5. [3]
    deing
    Link
    [Meta] Would someone mind changing the link to https://www.zeit.de/politik/ausland/2019-04/european-union-hungary-democracy-viktor-orban-english/komplettansicht ? It has the entire text on one...

    [Meta]
    Would someone mind changing the link to https://www.zeit.de/politik/ausland/2019-04/european-union-hungary-democracy-viktor-orban-english/komplettansicht ? It has the entire text on one page instead of spread out over five.

    9 votes
    1. cfabbro
      Link Parent
      Just FYI, only @deimos can currently change links, so it's probably best to ping him in comments like this.

      Just FYI, only @deimos can currently change links, so it's probably best to ping him in comments like this.

      4 votes