Power is poison

Political power is poison.  More political power is more poison. It’s a little wonder that Fidesz and Prime Minister Viktor Orbán are not terminally ill yet.

potencic3a1lis_jc3balius-621x1024

July, 2016: Most likely election results according to all political polls

If the elections were held in Hungary this Sunday then Fidesz would repeat, or actually improve, its 2014  result when they achieved a supermajority (that is two thirds of the seats) as they did in 2010.

One may daydream about a grassroot political force, about healthy competition in Hungary’s political life, but now there are simply no signs in Hungary for an electable alternative to Fidesz.  This is bad for Fidesz, this is bad for the country but it’s a lot, lot better than the prospect of a “left-liberal”, that is MSZP-DK-PM-LMP-Együtt government. Or of a Jobbik government.

 

 

Hungary’s left liberal elite and the West

I came across with an excellent writing by George Schöpflin:
the Budapest elite looks down on the countryside and patronises the centre-right as ignorant hicks. This does not go down well.
This approach, which has deep roots in the Hungarian past, is strongly universalist (quondam internationalist) and will not or cannot understand how the great majority in Hungary accepts its Hungarian identity and objects to its being disrespected. Consequently, the left-liberal elite not only has to confront a shrinking voter base, but actually appears to revel in it and to insist on the absolute correctness of what it says by constant reference to “the West”.  This “West” however is an imaginary construct (to misuse Benedict Anderson’s language) that serves only to legitimise the left-liberal elite’s claim to power, the power that is to set the agenda and pass moral judgement. It’s an odd kind of opposition that is constantly running abroad for its support base, is increasingly cut off from the social and cultural realities of its own society, lives in an epistemological bubble and betrays its purported intellectual heritage by refusing to engage in argument of any kind. Consequently, its cultural capital is shrinking, a haemorrhage that does not seem to perturb it in the slightest.
for reasons of their own, the international media have run a quite unbelievably vicious campaign against Hungary. Plausibly backed by a sophisticated public relations operation that plays to the journalists’ own predispositions, a thoroughly negative narrative of Hungary has been constructed and the domestic media use this to reinforce their own belief system. The left liberal elite then sees itself justified in its thinking. It’s a wonderful circular system, that has only one drawback: it doesn’t win votes.
I highly recommend reading Mr. Schöpflin’s whole article because it does explain a lot of things in Hungary’s political life, including the positions of Fidesz, Jobbik and LMP as well.
Fidesz won in each and every county

Fidesz won in each and every county

 

Fidesz won in all but in 10 constituences

Fidesz won in all but in 10 constituences

‘Roma crime’ is the left-lib parlance for Jobbik-phrase ‘Gypsy crime’

Perhaps I don’t need to introduce Ferenc Gyurcsány, the prime minister of the postcommunist-leftlib MSZPSZDSZ coalition between 2004 and 2009.  You know the one who admitted to his comrades-in-sin behind closed doors in 2006 that MSZP-SZDSZ “lied  night and day and did nothing” (with the active help of the European Commission) in order to win the elections. When they did win and Gyurcsány’s secret obscene speech was leaked, huge crows protested for his resignation and new elections.  Instead of that Gyurcsány had the police shoot protestors in the eye, beat many people to half-dead … while those very human pressure groups of some particular rights (Amnesty International, TASZ, Helsinki Committee, etc. ) kept a low profile. Oh, well,  then Hungary was a democracy which Freedom House ranked higher than today’s Hungary when it’s the left-lib protesters who beat up each other and the police only investigates…  Here is the story:

Albert Pásztor, the police chief of Miskolc in 2009,  held a press conference on the 30th of January, 2009.  Miskolc is an industrial city in Northern Hungary, where Gypsies constitute a high proportion of the population, and crime rates are much higher than elsewhere. Pásztor said in the press conference that a particular kind of street mugging is committed by Gypsies only and he added “cohabitation is not possible with our minority citizens. Yes, that’s it.”     Gyurcsány, who was still PM at that time,  rushed to hold a press conference and he theatrically announced he had ordered the police minister to fire Pásztor for his “racist hate speech”.   There was a local demonstration in Miskolc for Pásztor… with the participation  the local (Miskolc)  MSZP organization, that is Gyurcsány’s party then.

Jobbik was rising strongly and steadily in the beginning of 2009 and one of their main slogans was “combatting ‘cigánybűnözés’ (Gypsy-crime).   “No state employee is allowed to speak of ‘cigánybűnözés'”, Gyurcsány roared in February, 2009 on his press conference.   His exact words were: “this is not simply outrageous. This is sickening.”  He was forced to resign two months later and his economic minister Gordon Bajnai was made PM.

Fidesz won their first landslide victory a year later.  Gyurcsány left MSZP soon, after a lot of bickering, and he established his own party called “Democratic Coalition“.  (They are democratic because they call themselves “democrats” in each second sentence they utter and they call the right wing dictatoric, Fascist, anti-Semitic, racist and what-have-you.)  The major political theme of Gyurcsány’s “left-liberal” party is  anti-racism, fighting for LBGT and  Roma rights, etc.
Fidesz made the penal laws stricter after 2010 and they reinforced the police, too.  They also introduced “public work” for the poor and unskilled, that is basically people are made to work for their benefits, but crime is still a problem in a lot of places, including Miskolc.  Yes, poor, unskilled Gypsies, a lot of them living in slums, commit a lot of crime in Miskolc.

Now, after the second landslide victory of Fidesz in the general elections and before the local elections due to be held in October,  MSZP and Gyurcsány’s party nominated the very same ex-policeman for Miskolc’s mayor whom they fired so theatrically in 2009.

Amnesty International, TASZ, Helsinki Committee, etc.  keep a low profile about this move…

Today, five years later, these are Gyurcsány’s words about Pásztor: “I see the whole of the man rather than those particular words of his.”   Moreover the vice president of Gyurcsány’s small extremist “left-lib” party, Mátyás Eörsi was talking about “Roma-crime” (romabűnözés) last week in an interview on the left-liberal TV channel ATV.    This former SZDSZ politician has always been… er, very, very vocal about racism like discrimination against the Roma… Though, to tell the truth, his real speciality is accusing people of anti-Semitism… (he’s  Jewish)

The local organization of ex-MSZP PM Bajnai’s Együtt-PM, another splinter party of MSZP founded after 2010, also supported running Pásztor for Miskolc mayor. However the national leadership did not.  Márton Gulyás, the NGO leader who recently blurted out that George Soros is financing anti-government political demonstrations via the so-called “Norwegian Civil Fund”, is closely related to Együtt-PM.   He turned up at Gyurcsány’s political rally on Saturday (advertised as “The day of resistance” ) and he held a sign protesting Pásztor’s mayor candidacy and the phrase “Roma crime”.   Gyurcsány’s fans promptly destroyed his sign and they also beat him during the speech of Ágnes Kunhalmi, who is .. surprise, surprise… the Budapest leader of MSZP, that is Gyurcsány’s ex-party.  Later Gyurcsány’s democrats threw burning cigarette stubs at Gulyás.

Tonight Gyurcsány’s “Demokratikus Koalíció” made a press release demanding to know if “Gulyás’ provocation occured in his capacity as a civil political activist or if he acted as an employee of Együtt-PM, with the full knowledge of his party leadership”.

A cup of nice coffee for me, please. 🙂

PS: I expect to see this story in the Western media under titles like “Fascist demonstrators attack human rights activist in Hungary” 😀

Goldilocks economy in an Orbán-era?

A Goldilocks economy is

An economy that is not so hot that it causes inflation, and not so cold that it causes a recession. There are no exact markers of a Goldilocks economy, but it is characterized by a low unemployment rate, increasing asset prices (stocks, real estate, etc.), low interest rates, brisk but steady GDP growth and low inflation.

Regulators use fiscal and monetary policy tools to try to create an economy with these conditions. Economic conditions abroad, and regulators’ reactions to them, also influence whether an economy can achieve a Goldilocks state. This state is ideal for investing, because as companies grow, stocks perform well, and in the absence of inflation, bonds will hold their value. If GDP grows too quickly and inflation creeps up too quickly, however, the economy can overheat and a bust can result.

The phrase comes from the fairy tale “The Story of the Three Bears“.  Similarly to the UK, Hungary may enjoy a Goldilocks economy now… and that may mean a Orbán-era ahead… with a lot of postcommie/leflib  whining about “checks and balances” for years to come.  I’m looking forward to that.  🙂

The Central Bank of Hungary has published their latest forecast today.  CBH expects 0.0% inflation for 2014  (as compared to their 1.3 percent forecast in March) and they increased their GDP growth forecast to 2.9% from 2.1% .  The public budget deficit is expected to stay below the 3% Maastricht requirement.   They also predict rising employment, decreasing unemployment and a steady real household income increase.

NBH forecasts

According to the latest poll by Tárki published yesterday,  political support haven’t changed much for any of the parties since the EP elections:  Fidesz-KDNP is backed by 56% of the decided voters (up from 54%), MSZP has 16% (down from 17%), Jobbik stands at 15% (down from 17%).

 

After the EP elections

The EP elections have been held and they changed the political landscape in Europe… and, to a smaller degree, in Hungary, too. So let’s study the results from that large  sample survey  a bit.   The EP election was purely list-based, with a five percent threshold,  the same rules applied as in other EU countries, so the postcommie left-liberals shouldn’t  really whine about unfair election rules, gerrymandering, disproportionality in the election system, what have you.  (Well, they do.)

The voter turnout in Hungary was lower than in 2009 but this is not much of a surprise:  Hungary had general elections in April.  Besides people know it very well in Hungary, too, that Europe’s decision makers are elected in the national elections.  The Eurocrats in Brussels should get this message at last!  The turnout was still almost 30 percents and that’s quite high compared to 13%, the voter turnout Slovakia, our northern neighbour produced…

First and foremost, let’s note that Fidesz won another landslide victory and the poll result I quoted  was about right for Fidesz.   Fidesz has increased their support to 51.5% in the EP elections from 46% in the general elections and Fidesz was the only Hungarian party which got a higher share of votes than on the 6th of April.  What does this entail for Fidesz and Hungary?  It’s certainly a strong reinforcement for PM Orbán in his European policies.

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said already before the election,  in a last minute interview on Saturday, that  “he will not support Jean-Claude Juncker‘s bid to become president of the European Commission even if the centre-right European People’s Party (EPP) wins the European elections”.   Orbán became the first EPP leader to publicly break ranks on the issue but it has turned out quickly  he has the support of British Prime Minister David Cameron.  Orbán and Cameron share anti-federalist views concerning the future of EU and Junckers clearly doesn’t.     I think this event signals that Orbán  is becoming a significant player in the European political arena. BTW, let’s also remember what Statfor CEO George Friedman wrote about  Orbán’s balancing act.

 

The distribution of the cast votes

The far-right party Jobbik came second. (Let’s remember that Marine Le Pen’s National Front won in France!)  However they actually lost voter support:  they got only 15% after  20% of the votes in the national elections.

No doubt the biggest impact of the election is on the postcommunist side.  MSZP came only third, they gained only two seats and they actually came in the fourth place in Budapest (which is the most a leftist/left-liberal place in Hungary)!  DK, ex-Socialist PM Gyurcsány’s extremist left-lib party, and Együtt-PM, ex-Socialist PM Bajnai’s left-lib party almost got as many as votes as MSZP.  Gyurcsány is making a comeback on the left-lib dunghill…  This really seems to be a death blow to MSZP, chairman Mesterházy (and then the whole leadership!) unexpectedly resigned a few days after the EP election.

Bajnai was invited to the Bilderberg-table in Denmark yesterday but the awkward political jester,  Gyurcsány seems to be swooping down on dying MSZP.  We’re going to see much blood on the left-lib political stage in the upcoming months.  The local elections will be held in October.

Enhanced by Zemanta

The International Republican Institute on the Hungarian elections

See the original article here:

The ruling, center-right Fidesz party under Prime Minister Viktor Orbán handily won the regularly scheduled elections to the National Assembly, taking 44.87 percent of the national list vote (and 37 seats) and winning 96 of 106 single-member district races outright.  With this result Fidesz won a second, consecutive two-thirds majority in the Assembly.  Turnout was 61.24 percent, somewhat lower than it was four years ago.  The socialist-liberal alliance led by the Hungarian Socialist Party came in second with 25.57 percent of the national list vote.  Jobbik, the radical, far-right party took 20.22 percent and the green-liberal Politics Can Be Different party just passed the five-percent threshold with 5.34 percent.

These elections were the first conducted under a new and controversial election system.  The subject of broad international criticism (which Fidesz argues has been politically driven by the Left), the new system cut the number of seats in parliament from 386 to 199, with 106 of these elected in single-mandate districts and the rest by proportional representation.  One ongoing criticism of the new districts is that they were gerrymandered to the benefit of the ruling party, but by comparison to any number of U.S. congressional districts, they are clean, compact, balanced and proportional.

Of these 106 single-mandate districts, Fidesz won 96 and the socialist-liberal coalition 10 – actually a worse performance for Fidesz than in 2010 under the old systems, when it won 173 of 176 districts.   Another criticism of the elections was that, although private media is competitive and has voices from left and right, a “significant part” of Hungary is served only by state media, and thus allegedly only received the “government line.”

IRI conducted a staff assessment in and around Budapest for the elections, with resident country directors from Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Turkey observing 24 polling stations.  Overall, IRI staff assessors found the environment on Election Day to be quiet, well-run and efficient.  Because IRI had no long-term observation mission, the Institute is not able assess the pre-election environment.

In his victory speech, Prime Minister Orbán said that the voters had said no to two things: hatred and leaving the European Union.  The voters, he said, reaffirmed that Hungary’s place is in Europe, but only when it has a strong national government.  “We stand, all of us, on the threshold of a new and wonderful age,” he said.  “I call on the citizens of Hungary:  Let us step into this new and wonderful age together.  Only together were we able to get this far.  And only together will we be able to make Hungary great and successful again.”

Stress reduction kit for postcommies and left-liberals

 

 

Enhanced by Zemanta

New Fidesz supermajority is official

After a lot of re-counting and legal appeals by the postcommunist “Government Changers” (Kormányváltók) coalition, Hungary’s High Court (Kúria) has announced their sentence today: the distribution of MPs seats wouldn’t change.   Another Fidesz supermajority after four years in government sounds like a real political miracle.

I do worry about Fidesz though. As the saying goes, “Power corrupts; absolute power corrupts absolutely”.  All in all, I think Fidesz got away with relatively little corruption  in the last four years, given the power the Hungarian voters gave to Fidesz and PM Orbán in 2010.  I hope very much I could write the same in 2018…

 

The seats in the new Parliament

 

The “Government Changers”, in close cooperation with the global neoliberal media,  have been, and are, trying hard to question the legitimacy of the elections results. Well, that’s one could expect from the  Reding-strategy after all.   One of their major “argument” is that Fidesz got a 67% majority with “only” 45% of the votes and that’s sooooo unjust and it’s soooo dictatorial. They don’t have any answer to the fact, other than ignoring, that Fidesz would have won 95% of the seats under the election rules of the United Kingdom.   They keep whining about “gerrymandering by Fidesz”, “the lack of freedom of speech”, “an electoral system which makes Fidesz impossible to defeat”, etc.   Apparently MSZP chairman Attila Mesterházy didn’t think last December that the very same election rules would prevent them from obtaining a supermajority.    EU propaganda, or US mouthpieces like the Wall Street Journal,  focuses  on Jobbik, which got more votes than in 2010 but a smaller percentage of seats!,  instead of that why Fidesz had another landslide victory or  why their postcommie/left-liberal cronies suffered such a huge defeat again from the Hungarian voters…

Instead of trying to learn from the lessons the Hungarian electorate gave them, the postcommies  have been  playing the “anti-Semitic card” for months and they have been trying very hard, with a lot of help from the aforementioned global media,  to stir up more and more hysteria about a planned monument which will be dedicated to all victims of Hungary’s military occupation by Nazi Germany in 1944.   Maybe I’ll write a separate post about this.  In the meantime I highly recommend reading this (very instructive!) article how a descendant of Holocaust victims,  the leader of the leftist-green party LMP,  was be labelled  and attacked when he had opined in the same way as I wrote in the previous sentence.

And these “progressive, democratic forces who represent European values”, together with their foreign overlords in the EU and in the USA,  are apparently unwilling to face up reality: Hungary has had enough of “Kormányváltók”, that is the wreckage coalition of MSZP, its splinters like the small parties established by former Socialist prime ministers and the leftovers of the now defunct extremist “liberal” party SZDSZ.

 

Enhanced by Zemanta

About the strong result of Jobbik

Jobbik  increased their support significantly in the last six months but especially in the very finish  of the campaign.   Having acquired almost as many votes as the five-party “left liberal” alliance, they can be considered a major Hungarian party now .

Update (thanks to commenter “szebbjovot”): The map below clearly proves this.

The distribution of second places in Hungary’s electoral constituencies

All this began after Jobbik started repositioning themselves about half a year ago, giving up their often openly racist rhetoric, and they started to create an image of a “youthful, cool party”.  No doubt their campaign has been great.  They didn’t enter into any mudslinging even when that meant losing some tactical edge for them.

Decided voters

If this direction would persist then I think they’ll be able to influence FideszKDNP much more than so far, pushing them on the nationalist agenda, and this consolidation trend may even end up in cooperation with Fidesz.   Time will tell.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Who said what about today’s landslide Fidesz victory

The results of the elections are in a nutshell:

  1. It’s a huge, huge centre-of-right  victory! After four years in government,  FideszKDNP  seems to have been able to retain even the supermajority!  This still hangs in the balance though because of two constituencies where the votes are very close to each other.
  2. The postcommunist left-liberal “Change of Government” coalition (MSZP, Együtt, PM, DK,  Liberals) came in second and they managed to win in ten individual constituencies. Apart from a single election district in the city of Szeged, all of these are on the Pest side of Budapest.
  3. Radical right-wing Jobbik came in third and relatively close to the postcommunist alliance. Undoubtedly Jobbik forms a third political centre now.
  4. Green-liberal LMP managed to sneak into the Parliament with a 5.2 percent result.

 

MP seats in the new Parliament based on 93.53 percents of the votes

 

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, seemingly quite moved,  thanked everybody who voted and especially those voters who supported his party.  He said that they worked hard for this result and God  will decide if they are worthy of it.  He emphasized that today Hungarians are the most united nation in Europe.  Referring to the postcommunist opposition, he said that Hungary rejected hatred and, hinting at Jobbik’s rhetoric, he said Hungary also rejected leaving the European Union.

MSZP chairman Mesterházy refused to congratulate PM Orbán to his victory because “the electoral system was flawed and strongly biased” and he was talking about “Fidesz-dictatorship”, an “illegitimate regime”, etc.  Let’s note that he said they’d get a supermajority, under the very same rules and these circumstances, a few months ago…

Ex MSZP PM Ferenc Gyurcsány, the leader of the extremist left-liberal party “Democratic Coalition“, said “Hungarian voters were plain wrong” and he pledged they’d get into power sooner than 2018.  He offered no congratulation to PM Orbán, “of course”.

Ex-MSZP PM Gordon Bajnai , the leader of Együtt-PM, was also whining about the electoral system.  He also refused to  congratulate PM Orbán.

Jobbik chairman Gábor Vona congratulated PM Orbán and pledged they’d win the next elections.

LMP chairman András Schiffer congratulated both PM Orbán  and  MSZP chairman Attila Mesterházy and he offered him co-operation in opposition.

 

I say those losers who were unable to offer the basic courtesy of congratulating the re-elected prime minister are very obviously (pathetic)  losers in the other sense of the word, too.

 

 

Enhanced by Zemanta

Last bets, please!

Ready, steady, …

The last results before today’s elections

The results will be announced tonight!

 

What would I like to see most ?  MSZP and its splinters to be buried for good.

 

Enhanced by Zemanta
%d bloggers like this: