Media freedom has ceased to exist in Hungary … yet again

If this tax would be enforced then there won’t be media freedom in Hungary more.

 

said  Andreas Rudas, RTL Group manager.  He added that “we stand up for the conflict  and the idea of leaving Hungary doesn’t even cross our mind”.

Mind you that media freedom has ceased today in Hungary because the tax law has been passed by the Parliament. In fact  media freedom ceased to exist in Hungary already in 2012 when the new media law was passed … and then it has ceased to exist on about each day since then.

Der Spiegel, the British Reuters, the Guardian, the Washington Post, etc. also chimed in the concert and they all emphasized that the pro-government daily Magyar Nemzet also protested against the new ad tax.  Well, they are not exempt from it either… or wait, in fact they are because no tax must be paid up to 500 million Forints. That means no Hungarian daily, weekly and monthly newspapers will pay.  However the trash (“commercial”) TV channels, like RTL, do have to pay up.

 

 

Ah, yes, this ad tax is really just a foot in the door because Google and Facebook, which don’t  pay any tax in Hungary, are meant to be the main  targets.

 

Advertisements

Election rally

Fidesz held an election rally today.  As expected, a huge crowd walked from the Parliament to Hősök Tere  to listen to the speeches held by Joseph Daul, the president of the centre-of-right European Peoples’ Party Fidesz belongs to in the European Parliament, István Pásztor, the president of VMSZ  and, of course and most importantly, Viktor Orbán, Fidesz-president and prime minister of Hungary who enjoys a kind of a rock-star status in Hungary. 🙂

Here is a panoramic picture from Magyar Nemzet, the daily I read.  I myself couldn’t make a picture which would do justice to the size of the crowd.

The crowd on Hősök Tere (Heroes’ Square)

However from now I’m going to post my own pictures.

First I drove to the P+R car park of Kelenföld terminal of the new Fourth Metro line which opened yesterday and tried to find a parking lot in the P+R car park… It was very busy because others may have similarly chosen not to drive in the city in order to avoid traffic jams and parking problems.   BTW,  you can ride this particular underground line for free till tomorrow evening.  🙂  There was a lot of people in the underground, the Budapest folks themselves are also curious to see the new underground line.
The underground trains are fully automated,  that is there are no human drivers!   The long and sad story of this underground construction  would merit a separate post in fact, as an epitome  of insane left-liberal (MSZP-SZDSZ) corruptness and inaptitude…

Anyway, here are some pics I took:

Kelenföld station

Inside the train

I caught up with Peace March on Andrássy út, the large long boulevard leading to Hősök tere.

I would say perhaps most people in the crowd were middle-aged like myself or they were elderly. However there were a lot of young people as well and many families with small children, too.  Apparently mostly ordinary  Hungarian middle-class, or perhaps working-class, people attended the rally but I also saw some who couldn’t fit the bill: a group of “Goths” or a bunch of English lads.  Based on their accents, which I was familiar with, they could have been a stag party straight from Bristol (West Country of England).  I tried to eavesdrop a bit to find out what on Earth they were doing there…  All right, I know eavesdropping isn’t nice but I was damned curious! 😀 In the end I didn’t get a clue and, of course, I didn’t want to butt in by telling them I understood their banters.

Inside the crowd

Inside the crowd

 

The crowd was estimated (by the Ministry of Interior Affairs) to consist of 440,000-460,000 people which sounds a bit exaggerated to me but there you go… I saw such drones  were used to make aerial pictures so perhaps I’m wrong and there were so many people there  indeed.   As always, the news agency  AFP put this like “more than 100,000 people”, and some other Western news portals  wrote about “tens of thousands”, of course…   No surprise there.

A drone is about to fly above the crowd on Hősök tere

A drone is about to fly above the crowd on Hősök tere

 

As it’s customary on political rallies in Hungary, especially on the ones held in Budapest, people carried signs with the names of the towns and villages they came from.  Besides the political message, this also has a practical purpose: it helps groups to keep together.What I can say for a fact is that people came from all over the Carpathian Basin… This sign, also reciting the first line of our “second anthem”  Szózat,  says the group came from Felvidék (officially known as “Slovakia”)

Felvidék sign

I really liked this flag with Saint Mary, the patron saint of Hungary:

St. Mary

Out of politeness, and also to comply with Hungary’s law bashed  by the Left, see for example this Guardian article,  I asked permission from this elderly lady to make a picture of her and her lovely hat with the national colours ribbon. She was moved and happy to grant me permission and then we had a little chat, together with her husband.

Elderly lady in the crowd

Elderly lady in the crowd

 

You may ask what the speeches were about… well, I’m afraid there’s not much to say.  The gist of it  was that “Fidesz is onto a winner in the elections on the 6th of April but we, supporters still must do our best to mobilize and convince people to give Fidesz another four years in government”.  I myself didn’t feel disappointed because of the lack of  sophisticated and lofty thoughts and I doubt other people would have either:   it was simply a great get-together in fabulous spring weather!

Hajrá Magyarország, hajrá magyarok! 🙂

 

Enhanced by Zemanta

The Reding strategy

MSZP chairman Attila Mesterházy paid a visit to the USA last week. He held a non-public talk in the Center for Strategic and International Studies  (a think-tank of the Democrat Party) and, according to Magyar Nemzet, he stated that he didn’t think the presence of international observers on the upcoming elections would be useful and he personally would not want call for it. He said he thinks the international observers wouldn’t give a real guarantee (for Hungary’s holding free and fair elections) but they would legitimize the election results. He added  this is not an official viewpoint of their “Összefogás” coalition now and ex-Socialist Prime Minister Gordon Bajnai disagrees.

Mesterházy in Washington

Charles Gati, an American professor of Hungarian descent, who belongs to the circles of Hillary Clinton, an ex-councillor to the Department of Foreign Affairs,  also sat among the audience of Mesterházy’s talk.  Gati said earlier that  “there are methods for getting rid of the Orbán government  – in a democratic way if possible and in another way if that’s not possible ” . Later he elaborated that, besides the IMF-weapon,  civil war is also an option. (See, for example, the same article)    Does “Ukraine”, with its shale gas luring western companies, ring a bell?

According to an unnamed Italian EU official, EU Commissioner Viviane Reding said  in the secretive Bilderberg-meeting last June that she would do everything to question the legitimacy of the 2014 elections in Hungary and she had held meetings about this with representatives of Hungarian organizations which receive most of their financial resources from the USA.

Mesterházy’s talk in the Center for Strategic and International Studies is the umpteenth sign of  the Reding strategy  being realized.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Jewish violence in Hungary?

According to the Jerusalem Post,  the Federation of Hungarian Jewish Communities (Mazsihisz) “may send people to physically prevent” members of the nationalist far-right Jobbik party from holding an (undoubtedly provocative) rally at a former synagogue next Friday.

While the local Jewish community has called upon Esztergom Mayor Éva Tétényi to prohibit the gathering, it is also preparing itself for a physical confrontation, Mazsihisz president András Heisler told the Post.
“In case this [gathering] will not be prohibited, the Mazsihisz and Jewish civil organizations will protest and physically hinder the Jobbik rally on the spot,” Heisler wrote in an email.
Mazsihisz has previously indicated a willingness to use physical force, if necessary, to combat rising anti-Semitism.
During an interview last June, Mazsihisz executive director Gusztáv Zoltai told the Post that “until this moment, we have [had] verbal attacks so we strike back with words, but we have more than words.
“We are strong, and if we have to, we will strike back,” he said at the time.

Did Gusztáv Zoltai hint at his AK-47 assault rifle perhaps which he used as a Communist militiaman assisting the Soviet troops to crush the Hungarian revolution in 1956?  Or did he mean Mossad, the Israeli secret service infamous for its clandestine operations in other countries?

So are the Mazsihisz men going to attack the Jobbik-rally? Has the Hungarian police allowed the rally to be held? Was there a court appeal by Mazsihisz? What was the court sentence? Unless there is a legally binding court decision to ban the Jobbik rally, the police’s job is to protect their rally and to remove all those who want to “physically hinder” the rally.  It really sounds like Mazsihisz thinks they are above the law…  But they are very wrong about this indeed.

The Mazsihisz executive director in the uniform he may long for

This is not the only sign now that certain  Jews may want to resort to violence in Hungary though. American Nepszava online, the Internet site where Jewish writer Ákos Kertész called Hungarians   “genetically inferior” and “pigs wallowing in the mud, happily grunting and guzzling swill”,  published an anonymous article which urges that  a planned memorial to WWII German occupation in Budapest should be blown up, Magyar Nemzet reported.   The Foreign Ministry of Hungary has sent a letter to the US embassy which said that the article conveyed extremist views and incited criminal behaviour. The ministry also has asked the US embassy to take steps, according to the US legal system, against the news portal which is registered in the United States, “similarly like we repeatedly asked to in the case of kuruc.info” (which is an extremist, racist far-right site also registered in the US)

Enhanced by Zemanta

In full flight

The conservative daily Magyar Nemzet daily  reported  on Tuesday that Gabor Simon, the deputy chairman of the opposition Hungarian Socialist Party (MSZP)   had placed 575,000 euros and 162,954 US dollars in a securities account opened in Austria in 2009 and his deposit account held 770,000 euros (240 million Hungarian Forints) last October.   Simon’s earlier asset declarations as an MP did not contain these amounts, that is he forged the submitted documents, and the origin of the money is unknown. Simon  was suspended from the party on the same day and MSZP has been refusing to answer questions about the case  since then. (Though Simon promised on Wednesday in a short message that he would  “give a detailed briefing on Thursday”) Hungary’s chief prosecutor asked the Hungarian parliament to suspend Simon’s immunity rights on Wednesday so that he could face criminal charges of tax fraud and document forgery.  It was reported that a criminal investigation was initially launched out of official duty last November, without anyone named as a suspect,  when they received information  from the Austrian financial markets watchdog which sent data to the Hungarian tax authorities concerning suspicion about money-laundering.

Let’s see how the Socialist Party’s campaign chief, Zsolt Molnar responded when  he was asked by journalists on a conference  organized by a left wing think-tank whether the dirty money found in Simon’s Austrian bank account had anything to do with MSZP:

The Socialist Party campaign chief’s response to the journalists’ questions

Another Socialist politician (Zsolt Török, the ex-spokesman of MSZP, who had to resign because of a fake video MSZP tried to smear Fidesz with in a by-election held in the town of Baja a few months ago) said only this: “one has to investigate Fidesz politicians, too”

This says it all, doesn’t it? 😀

Enhanced by Zemanta
%d bloggers like this: