Destruction of the former constitution and drafting a new, single-party system constitution without political consensus. Mr. Pál Schmitt in the Sándor Palace. Civil servants threatened with observation, plus retroactive taxation with a tax rate of 98 per cent. Destruction of the Constitutional Court, which now has limited powers to check and balance (provided that it still wants to do so). Fidesz party soldiers in the Fiscal Council, in the State Audit Office, in the Media Council and in the leadership of the Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office. A flagrant media law, which is, in effect, nothing else than the introduction of censorship. Government biased public media news broadcasting. Impeding the activity of the press in the Houses of Parliament, and a former home DJ now appointed as (super)intendant of public TV stations.
We live worse than a year ago: food is much more expensive, petrol prices are sky-high, inflation is going up, a growing number of people are struggling with buying their daily food and paying off their overhead costs. What’s more, due to the flat tax rate introduced by the current administration, three quarters of Hungarians saw their net income declining. On the contrary, Orbán and his cronies could post a nice increase. Not a little, but a lot.
The social sensitivity of Orbán’s government is characterized pretty well by (their) monthly salaries that exceed HUF 2 million (EUR 7,400/USD 10,200), by filthy lavish government cabinets and exclusive rental cars that each cost HUF 600k per month (EUR 2,200/USD 3,000), whilst local governments are drowning in debt, and there are taxpayers who are sometimes even charged with the court costs of government cronies. Contracts for hire are being crafted for pals: examples are the one that was concluded in Zugló (the 14th district of Budapest) amounting to HUF 40 million (EUR 150k/USD 205k), and another one relating to the National Development Agency (commonly referred to as NFÜ) which is worth HUF 2 billion (EUR 7.5 million/USD 10.25 million). Auditors of equivocal reputation are now pressing charges against a number of people in the country, but they stand aside in the case of (currently MP) Tamás Meggyes, the previous mayor of Esztergom. Finally, the creation of the so called Counter-terrorist Unit, which is, in fact, much like their private Homeland Security.
Zsolt Gréczi, Népszava, February 28 2011.