Wednesday 15 May 2013
Hurray! The recession is over. Today the central statistical office announced the GDP figures for the first three months of this year, and GDP is up 0.7% compared to the last quarter of 2012. I was delighted.
One of my advisors urged caution. He told me that 0.7% is not a lot. The last quarter of 2012 was a particularly bad quarter. Two sparrows do not make a spring he told me. What nonsense. The recession is over.
I was in an ebullient mood as I visited the Cistercian Monastery of Zirc. This monastery, which was founded in 1182, has just been renovated at a cost of HUF 600 million. (The E.U. paid for most of it, but we'll keep quiet about that!)
During my speech I could not help boasting about the fact that the recession is over. "2013 will be a year of harvest!" I declared. Well that is certainly true. With an election coming up next year, it could hardly be otherwise.
After my speech, the abbot of the monastery asked if I would be staying for mass. "What's mass?" I asked him. He seemed surprised that I did not know.
Thursday 16 May 2013
Some of the winners of the tobacco franchises came to see me today. They said that they wanted to thank me personally. They were members of the party from some small provincial town. I gave them the reply that I give to all party members who have been granted special privileges (such as those who got the land lease deals):
"Someday, and that day may never come, I may call on you to do a service for me! But until that day, accept this as a gift."
Friday 17 May 2013
I discovered this morning that the Germans have been arguing about Hungary. Peer Steinbruck apparently told Merkel that she should not rule out expelling Hungary from the E.U. Merkel replied that in her opinion, it was a little too soon to send in the tanks.
How dare she make remarks like that about Hungary?
In my weekly broadcast, I told the listeners that last time the Germans sent the tanks to Hungary, it was not good, and it would not be good now! That should shut that stupid kraut up.
I also warned those who dared to question me about the tobacco franchises. "If we wanted to enforce political considerations in such a tender, there would not be a single left wing winner."
Saturday 18 May 2013
Time to destroy another political opponent. This time Gordon Bajnai. A few years ago, Bajnai's company bought a Goose Farm in the east of Hungary. Shortly after this, it went bust. The local farmers who had supplied the farm also went bust. Probably this was not Bajnai's fault – he just made a bad investment. But why let the truth get in the way of such a great PR opportunity.
Knowing how distrustful Hungarians are of successful businessmen, we spread a story that it was all thanks to Bajnai that the lives of all these innocent farmers had been ruined. We even call him the "Goose Thief" in Fidesz circles.
Today the goose thief was holding a conference for his "Together 2014" movement in Miskolc. So we sent some protestors there, to hold a demonstration outside. We also asked a journalist from MTV to text Bajnai a question asking him about the incident. He refused to answer any questions about this, so we can use that as proof that he is guilty.
These guys, Gyurcsany and Bajnai-just don't get it. Hungarians do not want to live in a country where everything is going well, and the government is fair. If they did, there would be nothing to moan about. We worked this out ages ago – that's why we keep telling the Hungarians that the world hates them, and that Western Europe is our enemy. They love that. Feeling that they are the victim. And they love us for telling them that. And we keep them in poverty while we skim off the country's wealth.
That's why we will win the election in 2014. Guaranteed.
Wednesday 22 May 2013
I was in Brussels today for the EU heads of state meeting. I was a bit worried about what Merkel might say about my comments, so I went over and apologized profusely. "When I was talking about the last time you sent the tanks, I did not means erm," I stuttered.
"Shut up Viktor" she replied, and walked away. So I guess that means that she is cool about it.
Tonight I watched the final of the Hungarian football Cup. I wasn't sure who to support. Debrecen is from the "Half Asian" part of Hungary, so I should really support Győr. But Győr is from the west, and we hate the west now- oh I'm confused. Anyway, congratulations to Győr for winning. Perhaps next year it will be Vidi!
Thursday 23 May 2013
Today I held a meeting with the head of the constitutional court, Peter Paczolay. After the meeting we gave a joint press conference, where I said that the time for debate about the role of the constitutional court is over. (From now on the court will do as I say!) I said that the court must continuously monitor whether Hungary's legislation is in line with the countries international obligations. (If it is, then we must change it so that it is not!).
FreeHungary; May 23. 2013.
Thursday 2 May 2013
I was looking forwards to a bit of good PR today. I held a joint press conference with Budapest City Mayor, Istvan Tarlos, to celebrate the new Mercedes busses that we have bought for the city. I was expecting some good headlines, such as "Vick gives Mercedes ride to the masses!" or some other such corny headline.
Instead, it turns out that I managed to screw that up. After the press conference, Istvan and I travelled on one of the busses, up Andrassy avenue. During the journey we passed the Ballet institute. Istvan told me that it is owned by some foreigners. There is nothing he can do. "I'll change the law!" I told him, "just tell me what you want the law to say and I will write it." What I did not know is that there was a journalist recording this.
So now the papers are full of stories about the Viktator ruling by decree. Of course I rule by decree, everyone knows that parliament is just a rubber stamp these days. But it was a bit embarrassing to be caught so brazenly admitting this.
Friday 3 May 2013
They say tobacco is a hazard to your health. They didn't say that it couldbe a hazard to your chances of winning an election.
We hatched a plan to reward loyal Fidesz supporters, wherby tobacco products can only be sold through authorized retailers. Applicants have to apply to run an authorized tobacco shop, and provided that they can prove that they have done good service to the party, they get the franchise.
Sadly this is going down badly. The electorate are none too impressed that many family businesses, who have been retailing tobacco for ages have not won franchises because they are not party members.
So we had to retreat today, and I told my radio listeners that such commies can still retain their shops!
Sunday 5 May 2013
Today the World Jewish Congress started in Budapest. It gave me the opportunity to display my new "tolerance" credentials, as I gave an address to the conference. I told them that there is no room for prejudice against the Jews, or any other foreigners that live in Hungary.
I was a bit surprised therefore to learn that the Congress leaders were critical of my speech. What did I say wrong?
Friday 10 May 2013
Economics minister Mihaly Varga has had to announce further austerity measures, (although we don't use that word in public – anyone who says the "a" word gets fined!). It's necessary to keep those bean counters in Brussels happy. I would tell them where to stick their "excessive deficit procedures" but if I did, they would extract revenge some other way.
I told Varga to make whatever measures are necessary, but to keep his hands off the funding for my stadium in Felcsut!
FreeHungary; May 15. 2013.
Friday 19 April 2013
Today my weekly interview with Kossuth radio was aired. Naturally I was asked about the EU and their objections to our new electoral law. As I told the show, there are three objections that the EU has raised. One is the restriction on party advertising. Under the most recent electoral law (the twentieth since we came to power in 2010), political parties may only advertise on state media. Since we control state media, we effectively control all media advertising. The E.U. position is that as far as Hungarian parliamentary elections are concerned, this does not violate E.U. laws as it is beyond the powers of the E.U. But as far as elections for the European parliament are concerned, the E.U. can and will make us change this.
No problem. We are happy to change the law so that it does not apply to E.U. parliamentary elections. Who cares about the E.U. Parliament anyway? But I am happy to say that Hungarian sovereignty wins when it comes to our parliamentary elections, and can assure the people of Hungary that political advertising from the opposition parties will not interrupt their TV viewing.
Wednesday 24 April 2013
Today the Institute of History of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences published the list of persons who are connected with dictatorships of the twentieth century; No streets in our country may be named after anybody who appears on the list.
I was mightily relieved to note that my own name had not been included in the list!!
Friday 26 April 2013
Bad news! It seems that we may face a united opposition at the next election after all. The socialist party and the together 2014 announced today that they would work together at the next election, and field joint candidates in all electoral districts. This is worrying – while Fidesz is still the most popular party, the opposition have narrowed the gap by uniting so are probably only 1 or 2 per cent behind us now. And with 45% of the electorate undecided, anything could happen.
Already one of our spokesmen Máté Kocsis has invented a new phrase, "The Mafia Left." Hopefully that will put the electorate off voting for the opposition, and they can vote for the Orbán Simicska mafia instead.
Useful guy this Máté Kocsis. He cut his political teeth working for the far right Miep party, which sadly is no more!
Monday 29 April 2013
The press and the opposition are up in arms about our latest move to reward the party cadres. We have passed a new law on the sale of tobacco. Under the law, tobacco can only be sold at a limited number of outlets. People wishing to sell tobacco have to apply for one of the licenses. And naturally the licenses are only granted to those applicants with connections to the party.
Our party spokesman Máté Kocsis issued a statement saying that clearly the multinational corporation lobby, the tobacco lobby and the left wing parties are behind the totally unreasonable and hysterical reactions against this small act of cronyism.
FreeHungary; May 1. 2013.
I would like Bajnai Gordon to become the next prime minister with Ferenc Gyurcsány as head of communications. He could always explain what Bajnai's governance is about. It does not matter from which position he would do that.
Bajnai stepped on the wrong stage last October as I see it at the moment. (Bajnai re-entered politics again last October. He introduced his political association in front of a mass event organised by Milla and Szolidaritás. Both of them civic based movements.) I have already known Bajnai's views regarding democracy. It is a far cry from Milla's. (What is Milla anyway? They have only two relatively well-known public characters.)
The other main issue is the relationship between Bajnai and Hungarian Socialist Party (MSZP). It has been obvious since the beginning that Bajnai has to be on the defensive with MSZP as they try to gain the main role in the opposition. MSZP keeps making a bid for negotiations, which are a bit early for Bajnai at the moment. Otherwise, MSZP has active politicians, which Bajnai's movement is lacking. The people behind Bajnai are not visible at all. Mr Szigetvári is an exception, but he is better known as a campaign leader than as a real politician. This communication suggests that the members would like to remain in the shadows. It is either Bajnai giving reports, or a communique is released by the movement as a reaction to Fidesz's different arrangements.
The organizational development is the other blurry spot. We hardly even know the crucial issues that are going on. It is highly crucial since the position in the negotiations with MSZP is seriously weakened without a countrywide network based on strong local bodies.
Ferenc Gyurcsány is also a main issue. Bajnai's communication is still following an ambiguous policy regarding Gyurcsány, even though, he must have known that he will need to adopt a policy towards all main political players. The source of personal credibility is transparent behaviour and power as well. I would say definite and straightforward answers instead of power. These two will form power, actually. This type of credibility is desperately needed in every political issue, from establishing alliances to transforming the taxation. Definite answers and open communication are a big plus for winning the game. I would like to ask Gordon Bajnai to adopt this strategy. It is not too late at all.
Zsófia Mihancsik, galamus.hu; April 22. 2013.
Thurdsay 11 April 2013
The war of words with Western Europe continues. Tibor is fighting on our behalf. He has written articles, or made statements to various Western European newspapers in which he ridicules those who criticise our government.
EU commissioner Viviane Reding has been particularly critical of our government since we came to power. Tibor is claiming that Reding, a conservative, is criticising Hungary to gain favour with the liberals and lefties in Brussels, so that next year she can make a bid to take over Barosso's job as president of the commission.
I used to worry about Tibor. He seemed to be far too nice. But I can see he has learned well the Fidesz method of dealing with criticism. Don't argue the facts, you will lose; Keep repeating your arguments even when they have been proved wrong. Lie if necessary. And launch vicious personal attacks on the critic, always accusing them of having some other agenda!
Friday 12 April 2013
I was saddened to hear of the death of Annamaria Szalai, head of the media authority. She will be remembered for her brave fight against Klubrádio, which ultimately failed.
Her death also highlights a weakness in my strategy. Using the 2/3 majority, we have stuffed all the committees that act as checks and balances on the power of the parliament with Fidesz loyalists, and appointed them for nine or ten year terms. So even if we lose the next election, we will still have a huge influence on public life. But what if our loyalists die? Mm. Better start doing health checks on them.
I received an angry letter from Jose Manuel Barroso telling me that he has serious concerns over whether our fourth amendment to the constitution complies with democratic norms. I received an almost identical letter last year. So I got my secretary to photocopy my response to that letter, and sent it again. "Nobody could be more committed to democracy than the Hungarian government, etc. etc. " It worked last year, let's hope it works again.
Saturday 13 April 2013
There are rumours that the European Peoples Party wishes to expel us from their group. That would be a bit of a blow. I'm proud of being the vice president of that group. The EU parliament will also debate Hungary on Wednesday.
I will go to Brussels on Tuesday to address the EPP, but no way am I hanging around for the debate on Wednesday. Thank goodness Margaret Thatcher has died – not just because I am totally opposed to her pro business, pro free market ideals, but also it gives me an excuse to miss the E.U. debate. I will go to her funeral!
Monday 15 April 2013
In Spain today, attending a "Catholics in public life" conference. I'm not actually a catholic, but so what, it goes down well with the voters.
I also used a press conference to defend the government, and attack the E.U. parliament. They are criticising us you see, so we have to attack them. So talking about the European Parliament, I said, "Facts are not important, accusations are met with shouting and ideological fits. They shout with swelling veins on their neck."
I've destroyed all my opponents in Hungary by rubbishing them – time to destroy my enemies abroad.
Tuesday 16 April 2013
Today was the meeting with the European Peoples Party where they are deciding whether to kick Fidesz out. I had a few chats with various leaders before the meeting. I told them that Hungarians are very Eurosceptic, and in spite of my best efforts to persuade them of the benefits of EU membership, any additional criticism of our country from the EU would tip us over the edge.
They seemed to buy this, so for now we are in the club.
Wednesday 17 April 2013
I attended Margaret Thatcher's funeral today. I must say, the Brits do know how to put on a good show. Lots of soldiers in their uniforms; everything timed impeccably.
What I couldn't understand was that Tony Blair and Gordon Brown were there. They were on the opposite side to Margaret Thatcher. I can't imagine me attending Gyurcsány's funeral. They are so hypocritical.
FreeHungary; April 17. 2013.
Let's take a look at the latest developments in the country that is the last dictatorship of the European Union. A man was brutally killed by two policemen and, to add insult to injury, the deceased was reported to the police as well. Needless to say, no one will take the responsibility for this heinous crime, no heads will be rolling. It looks as if the shady dealings with Azerbaijan have paid off, since there will be direct flights from Budapest to Baku. As far as Orbán is concerned, the extradition of the Azeri murderer is a win-win situation. Also, organizations pretending to be defending civil liberties are crying over the fact that a bunch of neo-Nazi thugs will not have the opportunity (the liberty) to protest against the March of Life, which is commemorating the victims of the Holocaust. The slogan under which these "peaceful protesters" wanted to demonstrate is called: "Give Gas!" In other news: Mr Navracsics was verbally attacking Viviane Reding, only to be put back into his place by Mr Barroso. But to no avail: The constitution will be amended for a record fifth time. Fidesz came close to being expelled from the European People's Party, for its continual disregard for the European values. Júlia Király,who was the vice president of the Hungarian National Bank, resigned. She probably knows that the currency reserve of the bank will have the same fate as the private pension funds. On a lighter note: former PM Ferenc Gyurcsány suffered for the umpteenth time the indignity of having himself shot into the Danube, Mr Lázár doesn't like comments which are not respectful to him, so he reported the case to the police. The machinery of intimidation is dashing forward relentlessly. There seems to be nothing new under the sun.
Thursday 4 April 2013
Today the new governor of the Hungarian Central bank made an important announcement. We (oops, I mean the governor of the Central Bank, a body that remains independent of the government) have decided to use HUF 500 billion of the central banks reserves to lend to small and medium sized enterprises.
The bank held a special meeting of the monetary council this morning to vote on the proposal. The members of the council were given 40 minutes to read a 30-page report before voting on it. Most of the members of the council are Fidesz appointees, and agreed that it was not necessary to read the report before voting. One member of the council, Júlia Király abstained claiming that she was not given sufficient time to read the report. But she is not a party member!
The clown has done a really good job since he took over at the Central Bank, getting rid of those who are not party members, and making appointments from within the ranks. I'm particularly pleased with the appointment of 32 year old Adam Balog to the position of deputy governor of the bank. He may not know much about banking, but he is a great party loyalist.
The Hungarian Central Bank remains truly independent of the government.
Saturday 6th April 2013
We are under attack on all fronts. The European Commission, in particular Viviane Reding the European Commissioner in charge of justice, who today attacked our judicial system and our new constitution in an interview with the commie newspaper Népszava. The European Parliament, whose committee on Civil Liberties will discuss our latest constitutional amendment on Monday. Even our allies, the European Peoples Party are joining in. The UN are criticising our treatment of the homeless; the Americans, the Helsinki Commission, the list goes on and on.
So we are going on a charm offensive. Key party cadres will write to our critics and tell them the truth. They don't understand Hungary. We are different. Their criticism is not based on fact. It's a communist conspiracy hatched by Gyurcsány to discredit our government. We are really nice reasonable people, honestly.
Monday 7 April 2013
Today we passed our election law (well another amendment to it!). We've scrapped voter registration for all domestic residents. Foreign residents will still have to register. We've also put limits on political advertising. Political parties may only advertise on State Run (i.e. Fidesz run) television and radio channels, and they are not allowed to criticize the government on any such adverts – otherwise they will be found guilty under the fourth amendment of defaming the nation!
Fidesz will continue to advertise itself, disguising its party political adverts as "Government Information." Not only do we get more publicity, the taxpayer pays for it.
On another note, I have decided to change my tactic regarding anti Semitism. Previously, in an attempt to win supporters away from Jobbik I have always remained silent, letting people like Tibor criticise any anti Semitic comments. But it seems this tactic is not working. Apparently most Jobbik voters think I am a gypsy, and would never vote for me. So I've decided to speak out against anti Semitism at last. Who knows, there may be a few votes in it.
On April 21, which is holocaust memorial day, there is a "March of the living". Some fascist motorcycle group called "more gas" had decided to have a march on the same day, clearly to cause trouble. So today I told Sandor Pinter that the motorcycle group march must be banned, as must any other march that threatens the "March of the living!"
And who knows, I may even get some credit from our foreign critics!
Freehungary; April 10. 2013.
Brilliant Hungarian musician Péter Gerendás has announced in a goodbye letter recently that he will leave Hungary soon. He will leave our country, his homeland, his home, he will leave Hungary soon. And he will leave us as well.
His reason for doing so is that he sees, he feels and experiences that the sign to leave has appeared on the wall.
The fact that he was born here in Hungary is not enough anymore. That he was brought up here, that his children live here, and that if sometimes he comes across a bush, he knows both its flower and its name – is not enough of an incentive for staying here anymore.
The fact his mother tongue is Hungarian is not enough to stay here anymore. The fact that he dreams in Hungarian and that it's Hungarian poets' lines that most often come to his mind is not enough for staying here anymore.
All of these could be sufficient forces to convince him that he should rather stay in Hungary, but they aren't so anymore.
We will be one less once again – the nation will lack a highly talented musician and a fantastic friend. We will be one less with a brilliant guitarist, who never had disputes with anyone and who never wished anything wrong to anyone. (Unlike some people who caused harm to him.)
"Oh, how many people have already left this country, and not the carpetbaggers, /how many ran away out into the world, / and not the wicked."
These lines were sung by another notable Hungarian musician, the late Tamás Cseh well more than thirty years ago. Of course, the circumstances were different back then, but the essence is always the same. Still, quite a lot of people live here who know by historical experience and not only from songs that dictatorships always begin the same way.
Gerendás is now leaving Hungary following so many unnamed – who are numerous and have been living in different countries across the world for a long time now. Gerendás is leaving after those many that left Hungary for other countries in the pursuit of a happy and truly rewarding life.
They did not look for a new homeland, however, because there's only one homeland.
We the rest are staying here yet – because it's familiar being here, and also because of our own opportunism. Or as some say it jokingly: because of our sense for adventure.
Péter Gerendás loves his homeland, but it seems that the homeland does not love him enough.
Me, I am staying here yet.
With all due respect,
Friday 29th March 2013
Today we celebrated the twenty fifth birthday of the founding of our great and noble party. (The actual birthday is tomorrow, but we heard that there is going to be a demonstration outside of the party headquarters tomorrow, so we celebrated today).
I started Fidesz (the young democrats) because the liberal party at the time would not allow offer me any position, so I started my own liberal party. Things have changed a lot since then. We are not as young as we were, of course. We changed from being liberal to being conservative when we saw a gap in the market in 1993, when the Hungarian conservative party (the MDF) was losing popularity. But the best thing is, that liberal party died in the 2010 elections! Revenge is sweet.
It's amazing how powerful we founders of Fidesz have become. Lajos Simicska is a successful businessman, admittedly helped by the fact that we pass a huge number of public projects his way; Zsolt Bayer is a writer whose name is known across Europe for his hate speech; and of course myself as Prime Minister, and Laci Kövér, speaker of the parliament. I wonder how we would have felt back then, if we could have seen how we are today.
Fidesz does not really have any strong ideological or political beliefs. Ask us "what are your opinions on this?" we will reply, "What do you want them to be?" We've discovered that the secret of power is to pander to the desires of the masses. They want lower power prices- we give them lower power prices. They want lower taxes, we give them lower taxes. They want us to punish multi nationals, we punish multi nationals. Who cares about the long-term effects?
The birthday party itself was a low-key affair. It was nice to meet some of the old gang again. I had a good chat with Zsolt Bayer. I apologised for the fact that deputy prime minister, Tibor Navracsics, had to condemn his hate speech publicly, but he understands well enough that the government of an EU country sometimes has to say things in public that it does not necessarily believe.
Saturday 30th March 2013
As expected, a demonstration outside of Fidesz headquarters. They managed to attract almost 1,000 supporters. We left a banner outside the office wishing them a Happy Easter! How polite of us. Naturally the police have photographs of all the attendees and we will be arresting them over the next few weeks.
Sunday 31st March 2013
We've already started our election campaign. Today and tomorrow a whole load of posters will be plastered across the billboards of the country trumpeting our successes. "Pensions up!" "EU Money Up!" "3,500 more policemen". The best news is that we are treating this as a government information campaign, so the taxpayer pays for it! Marvellous.
Monday 1 April
Today the new constitution was published. So "April Fool" to all those voters who thought that a vote for Fidesz was a vote for a prosperous and free country. The revolution at the ballot box was a return to dictatorship! And the constitution, which gives us absolute power, is now law.
Tuesday 2 April
Great news. An opinion poll puts Fidesz support up at 27%. Even if MszP, Bajnai and DK could present a united front, between them they would get only 24%. Our moves to cut utility prices are clearly bearing fruit. The election is almost in the bag!
FreeHungary; April 4. 2013.
I think I am not the only one who doesn't understand the polls. I don't think that they are lying willingly, but, if they can be linked to a certain political interest or ideology (as we know that they can), questions about their credibility rise up quite rightly. One of the polls suggested that the reduction of the household costs brought many percentage points to Fidesz, whereas the other one suggested that it was a bad move, which caused quite a lot of people to turn away from the governing party. Similarly, according to one poll, Attila Mesterházy, the leader of the Mszp , is ready to assume the responsibilities of a future prime minister, yet, another poll suggested, that the popularity of the party is at an all- time low. Those who want to get a clear picture of the Democratic Coalition or the Együtt 2014 won't fare better either, since the polls are, once again, controversial. The country is in a sorry state of affairs. For a start, Fidesz destroyed it, but, more importantly perhaps, the opposition is non-existent. They have personal, organizational problems and a well-developed Gyurcsány phobia. The former prime minister has been the only one, who, using his capabilities and talent, stood up to the then would-be dictator, and won. Never mind the constant smearing from Fidesz or the backstabbing from his own ranks, he is the only person known so far to have beaten Viktor Orbán. If we are to believe the polls, Fidesz is leading just by reducing the household costs by a few thousand forints. Compare this to what former prime minister, Péter Medgyessy did: he implemented a universal 50% wage rise. What was the result? A 20% lead for Fidesz two years later. If only Gyurcsány's internal opposition had not stabbed him in the back, if only the intelligentsia on the left had supported the then prime minister, we would not have a dictatorship today. At least, some of the leading members of the opposition do recognize what Gyurcsány did, when they mention his name with that of Gordon Bajnai. The constant fighting between the parties of the opposition is eroding our chances to get rid of the present government. The socialist party, being the biggest of them, wants to see Mr Mesterházy as the prime minister. Supporters of the Együtt 2014 think Gordon Bajnai is the right person to do the job, since he proved already how good he was in 2009. The only man, who knows how to fight the devil (Ferenc Gyurcsány), doesn't have prime ministerial ambitions. Funny old world... If we ever want to have our democracy back, the three leading figures of the opposition should thrash out an agreement, because the time is working against us. It is either this or a general boycott of the entire parliamentary elections. Should they decide that all oppositional parties will be on the same list, they will also have to accept the fact that the election they took part in was fraudulent, and that their participation in it made it legal. The responsibility on the shoulders of the opposition is historical. If they fail to come to an agreement they will not only fail in their credibility, but they will also fail the thousands of people who are queuing to get a warm meal, the thousands who are about to leave the country, and the thousands who live in constant fear and intimidation. If the opposition lets our chance to get rid of Mr Orbán and his mafia fritter away for their own petty political purposes, the people will not forgive them.
Fidesz is acting as a petty pick-pocket, who, having been caught in the act is pretending that it is his victim who is the actual robber. And while the venom of the people is directed at the innocent victim, the thief is walking away with the wallet. In 2014, we can be the witnesses of a farcical election. The restriction of international observers, the complete redrawing of the constituencies, the presence of Fidesz cronies as elections observers in the election committees, the restriction of the use of the media for the opposition parties and the revolting populism that centres around the reducing of household costs show how far the government is prepared to go to make this election a joke in poor taste. This is the party that keeps illegal personal data of the citizens, and this is the party that, using these data, will intimidate and punish those, who are not "trustworthy voters". And now they are screaming foul play because Gordon Bajnai's data collecting was revealed. It is again, the victim who will be left dumbfounded, while the robber, instead of having his mug shot paraded in the rogues' gallery, will walk away, smirking.
János Dési; Népszava; March 25. 2013.
Tuesday 19 March 2013
Today the US Helsinki Commission had a meeting entitled "The Trajectory of Democracy: Why Hungary Matters."
Jozsef Szajer represented the government at this hearing. Jozsef wrote the new constitution on his i-pad, so nobody knows it better than him. He did an excellent job during the hearing, providing answers to the main criticisms that have been raised, particularly against the amendments that were passed last week. He was the voice of reason in a storm of hysteria.
But then that b#&tch came along and destroyed Joe's great work. Dr. Kim Scheppele, a constitutional law expert from Princetown University gave a detailed and quite accurate account of how we have dismantled the constitutional system of checks and balances one by one since we came to power. "Hungary is on the verge of tyranny!" she declared.
This woman spent time in Hungary during the 1990s studying the Hungarian constitution! How sad is that?
Why should I care about what a committee in a foreign land says about Hungary? After all, the MTV "report" on the news did not even mention Dr. Scheppele, so our voters don't know about her. The problem is that they will undoubtedly influence the E.U. And the E.U could then suspend Hungary's membership. All those lovely subsidies would disappear. And then the oligarchs would probably kill me.
Ok, we need to change our image. We will appear like reasonable people, as József Szajer did during the hearing: "Nothing could be further from our mind than dismantling democracy. If that's what we have done then it was totally unintentional."
And we will destroy the reputation of Dr. Kim Scheppele!
Wednesday 20 March 2013
My secretary came into my office. "Mr. Martonyi to see you Prime Minister!"
"Mr. Martonyi. He's the Minister of foreign affairs" she whispered.
I'd quite forgotten. These days all government decisions are made by me, Janos Lazar and Peter Szijjarto. The rest of the cabinet is just there for show.
Anyway Mr. Martonyi wished to brief me on the meeting that he (and Szijjarto) had with the Russian foreign minister. It seems that trade relations between our countries are getting stronger. And we agreed that we would back the Russians in pushing for a negotiated end to the conflict in Syria (in other words, we will ignore the fact that Russia is providing arms to el Assad to use against his citizens, and we will not support French and British calls to arm the opposition.
Thursday 22 March 2013
I was shocked to learn today that a German cartoon on a children's TV channel showed Hungary being given a red card. I called some German official and asked him to refer the matter to the German media council, but was told that Germany does not have a media council as they believe in Freedom of the Press. What a ridiculous idea!
Friday 22 March 2013
My usual radio interview on Kossuth Radio. I talked about the controversy over the constitution, and as planned was totally reasonable about it. We will listen to the opinion of others, I told the listeners, but Hungary still retains the right to self-determination. Totally reasonable!!
Of course, the listeners could not see my new Magyar Garda uniform, nor did they know that as I spoke these words, we are now cooperating more with Jobbik. We are even going to propose a joint candidate to the constitutional court.
An exciting football match tonight. Hungary played Romania, and we looked like a really good side. We were 2-1 up until the 93rd minute. Then the Romanians managed to score in the last minute. Disappointing! No fans were allowed to watch the match of course, as a punishment for their anti-Semitic chants to the Israeli players during a recent 'friendly" match.
March 26 2013
Today was the first meeting of the monetary policy committee of the National Bank of Hungary since my puppet Matolcsy took over. I sent over my instructions to the committee and told them to cut interest rates by only 0.25% for now. I also told them that we will scrap the traditional press conference after the meeting. Don't want to make it too obvious that Matolcsy doesn't have a clue what he's doing!
Freehungary; March 27. 2013.
Since the arrival in power of Prime Minister Viktor Orban and his conservative party Fidesz, Hungary has gone through a set of dramatic changes to its legal system.
Not only has the Hungarian parliament adopted a new piece of legislation almost every day, among them some highly controversial laws which have restricted media freedom.
It has also adopted a new constitution, which despite being described by Orban as "solid as granite," was already been amended four times, showing the instability and unpredictability faced by Hungarians every day.
This has all been made possible by an electoral law which enables the parliament to change all rules by a two-thirds majority.
Having a political majority should not mean riding roughshod over the minority, but taking their views onboard.
However, Orban has seen his party's political majority not as a responsibility, but as an opportunity to consolidate its grip on the state, media and judiciary.
International and European institutions, civil society and human rights organisations, opposition parties, and even the United States have closely scrutinised and criticised the gradual "Orbanization" of Hungary.
The last straw was the adoption on 11 March by the Hungarian parliament of a fourth amendment to the constitution, ignoring requests by EU institutions to delay the changes until the Venice Commission - a Council of Europe expert body composed of former constitutional judges - had given its opinion.
This decision flies in the face of Hungarian Constitutional Court rulings and criticism from the Venice Commission over a large number of controversial laws, which have now simply been inserted directly into the constitution.
These include the possibility of criminalising homelessness, a restrictive definition of family, a ban on political advertisements in the commercial media and strict state control over religious establishments (which violates freedom of religion).
Other new measures include linking state grants for students to an obligatory period of domestic employment after graduation, as well as the abolition of the autonomy of universities and higher education institutions in financial matters.
Many of these measures had previously been rejected by Hungary's Constitutional Court.
But now, the court has had its powers radically curtailed, impeding its ability to review the constitutionality of amendments to the constitution and restricting its powers in relation to budgetary matters.
Finally, the fourth amendment has also threatened the independence of the judiciary, meaning that the Fidesz-appointed president of the National Judicial Office now has the last word over which court tries which case.
The Liberal (Alde) group in the European Parliament has strongly criticised this new set of amendments.
We have called for a debate during our plenary session of April. And I have called on the European Commission and Council to activate Article 7 of the EU Treaty to start the procedure to determine if there is a "clear risk of a serious breach" by Hungary of the European values of democracy, rule of law and fundamental rights that we all subscribe to.
If there is a "serious and persistent breach," Hungary would be invited to submit its observations and the European Council could decide by qualified majority to suspend certain rights, including voting rights.
Far from being a "nuclear" option, as it is often described, this is a formal procedure that is available to handle such situations if the political will to use it is there.
Let me be very clear.
I believe that we are far beyond the "risk" situation. We are clearly faced with a "breach" that is persistent and systematic.
I intend to call on the European Parliament to initiate the Article 7 procedure. And in particular I urge the European People's Party (EPP) to support such a procedure.
In effect, as a two-thirds majority is required in the parliament, the final decision will be in the hands of the EPP of which Fidesz is a member and Orban is a vice-president.
In recent days an anti-Semite journalist and an extreme right-wing musician have also been honoured by Zoltan Balog, the Hungarian minister of human resources.
Enough is enough.
I call on all those of us in Europe who believe that our continent is built on a set of common values and fundamental rights, who believe that the Union is only as strong as the principals it adheres to itself and who recognise that the time has come to take firm measures to stop the drift of Hungary away from democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights.
We owe it not only to the Hungarians, but to Europe itself.
Guy Verhofstadt, (Belgian MEP and leader of the Liberal Alde group in the EU parliament)
Thursday 14 March - Brussels
Heads of government meeting in Brussels today. The flight over with national airline Wizzair was a little crowded, but gave me the opportunity to have my photo taken travelling with the masses. Who says that I am not a democratic leader?
I had to give a press conference, where I was anticipating lots of questions about the fourth amendment to our Constitution that has attracted international condemnation as it removes all checks and balances on the power of parliament. So I went on the offensive. I told people that they should not criticise us until they know the facts! That shut most of them up.
Friday 15 March- National Holiday
On March 15th, we celebrate the Hungarian uprising of 1848 against the Austrian Habsburgs. It should have been a day of celebrations and political arguments. However, the almighty decided to provide us with unseasonably cold temperatures, snow and a terrible cold wind! All celebrations were cancelled!!
The snow and the winds blocked two of our busiest motorways and thousands of motorists became stranded. The national catastrophe agency, which we set up on coming to power, should have sent out alerts to motorists, and closed the motorways. Unfortunately this did not happen, as the man who should have initiated the process, minister of the interior Sándor Pintér, had been out drinking last night, and only woke up at 10.00am with a hangover. By then there were already thousands of motorists stranded.
The country was in crisis. I acted as any responsible leader facing an election in thirteen months would have done. I returned to Hungary from Brussels, and made a propaganda video. I drove onto the motorway, with a cameraman who made a film of me shaking hands with policeman, firemen and generally seeming to be in charge of the rescue operation. We had to edit the video a bit, because some of the policemen were complaining about lack of equipment or an unclear structure of command. But the final video, which was posted onto You Tube does me credit (though I say so myself!).
On a more positive note, being March 15, the government gives out prizes to journalists and writers. We used the occasion to thank those writers who have been friendly to Hungary (i.e. Fidesz).
The Táncsics prize for journalism was given to the journalist Ferenc Szaniszló for his excellent educational programmes on Echo TV, such as the one where he shows that aliens will land on the Earth in the year 2015, and the only people they will be able to talk with will be the Hungarians. Szaniszló was wrapped over the knuckles by the media council recently for his anti-Semitic reporting, but I don't see that as a reason not to give him the prize. If we became too fussy about such standards, we would end up having to give the prize to liberal or left wing journalists, and that simply would not do.
An award was also given to archaeologist Kornél Bakay for his recent discoveries about the origins of the Hungarian nation. He discovered that God is Hungarian, and that Jesus was not born in Nazareth in Israel, but in Nyíregyháza in Hungary. Bakay deserves his prize for an excellent piece of scholarship.
Monday 18 March
When Matolcsy said that the year 2013 would be the start of the fairy tale for the Hungarian economy, most people assumed he meant that the economy would suddenly take off and do really well. What he actually meant was that in 2013, government statements on the economy would be as devoid of reality and as full of fantasy as Cinderella!
The forint has dropped by nearly 10% against the Euro during the last two weeks, probably because of stories about the death of democracy in Hungary. Today parliament wanted to know why (or at least the 1/3 minority, excluding Jobbik members, who are innumerate).
State secretary of the economy Zoltán Cséfalvay produced an excellent porky to explain that. He said it was because of the crisis in Cyprus. Fortunately nobody was impolite enough to point out that since the currency of Cyprus is the Euro, one would expect the forint to rise against the Euro if there is a crisis in Cyprus.
FreeHungary; March 20. 2013.
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