freelogoOur objective is to provide English speaking readers interested in Hungary with a well balanced view of political activities in Hungary by featuring contents from various printed and online sources together with our own commentaries. We are convinced that Hungary is built on all sorts of different ideas, thoughts and opinions and, despite of the new Media Law, our aim is to provide an alternative and reliable source of information – contrary to the one-sided press of the government – for those who want to hear the voice of a free Hungary.


Viktor Orbán's Declarations and Reality

The biweekly newspaper Új Élet of the Federation of Jewish Communities of Hungary (Mazsihisz) published an article about what is tolerated in Hungary in the issue dated March 1, 2014, under the title of "Zero Tolerance,". For example, in February of 2014, neo-Nazis marched in the town of Székesfehérvár, which is less than 40 kilometers from Felcsút, where Prime Minister Viktor Orbán resides. During their raucous meeting, the participants shouted that the real Holocaust was not the annihilation of the Jews, but rather the bombing of Dresden.

n the Orbán government-affiliated ECHO TV statements by the journalist Ferenc Szaniszló were broadcast in early March: "Hungary must prepare, whether it wants to or not, to again incorporate the Carpathian-Ukraine region. ...If the Russians provide us with a fait accompli and offer to return what ours was for many centuries, how will we respond? Will we leave the decision up to our masters in Brussels and Washington?...In Hungary only treasonable national Socialists, fascistic liberals, left-wing extremists and anti-Semitic Zionists favor the European Union ....Russians and Hungarians in the Ukraine are the suffering subjects of national Socialist and fascist-liberal oppression".

A civilized society would not permit such an individual in the proximity of a microphone.

On February 19, 2014 Viktor Orbán wrote to Mazsihisz: "You are well aware that my past and my present governments have declared zero-tolerance to anti-Semitism ..."

Who can believe that?

by Karl Pfeifer

The jewish card

Divide and rule - a good old piece of advice which is usually true. Fidesz practices it studiously. With money, cunning, words, bribery and threats it operates the system.

The Hungarian jewish community was polarised once before - recalled historian Kovács M. Maria - when at the end of the 20's a part of the jewish community accepted the current government's position. And slowly those who disagreed were crushed, we know the end of the story.

A lot of jewish organisations are protesting against the occupational memorial to be set up at the Szabadság square, or against Sándor Szakály's uncouth comment, or against the fact that they were not informed about the House of Fates conception which would commemorate the child victims of the Holocaust.

As the government is usually accused of not stepping up against anti semitism (we are being subtle) it tries to prove the opposite with initiatives like the House of Fates. But if the jewish communities are protesting against such a project then the government's intention won't be credible.

For this reason János Lázár, minister of state heading the Prime Minister's Office called together a so called jewish community round table. And until this event they try to persuade as many potential participants as possible. They offer money, position and so forth. The aim is to create groups which support the government's position. And in the future these groups will embody the official representatives of the jewish community. That's all, this is not a big deal for the government's technicians.

Necessarily this plan needs some people to whom it is worth deserting.

Ceterum censeo: Orbán should leave.

Népszava; Dési János

Defending Hungary at the River Don? - By Karl Pfeifer

The Hungarian Government will erect a monument in the centre of Budapest commemorating the German occupation of the country on March 19 th 1944. A few weeks later another Holocaust-museum will open in the capital. The government is keen on giving the appearance - mainly abroad - that Hungary is a democratic country like all other EU-states.
But believing that one can say things in Hungarian for domestic use which are not noted outside its borders, high-level representatives give speeches which (like many other things this government does) do breach the basic values of the EU.
In January 1943 the Red Army attacked the second Hungarian army at the shores of the Don and destroyed it. Many of the badly equipped 200'000 soldiers lost their lives. On the 71 st anniversary of the Soviet "Break-through at the Don" Tamás Vargha, Undersecretary of the Defence Department, stated in a public speech that "the General Staff of the time said it loud and clear: participation in the war has to be avoided."
This is a crude falsification. Nothing forced Hungary to enter the attack against the Soviet Union and the then Chief of the General Staff Henrik Werth rather suggested to Prime Minister Bárdossy on June 14 th 1941 in writing that Hungary should indeed take part in the German attack [to get a part of the spoils], which proved to be a catastrophic miscalculation.
To quote Vargha further: "Many, tens of thousands of Hungarian soldiers became casualties on the Don, yet these Hungarians on the wide Russian battlefields did not fight and die for foreign interests, but in defence of their homeland."
This sort of revisionist thinking usually propagated by right wing extremists is now voiced by representative government politicians, while their colleagues insist - mainly abroad - on the huge difference between the right wing "Jobbik" and the "conservative" Fidesz-KDNP.

The article was published in German on


Bajnai's move gives a new chance for the opposition to beat PM Orbán, even if it came as a unilateral announcement instead of a joint statement by all major parties and small splinter group leaders. A joint list of candidates and a coordinated campaign would not only enhance the chances of the opposition but could be a much needed boost to the morale of opposition voters as well. Victory will not be easy, as Fidesz "will start the media engines and promise everything to everyone" but hthis opposition has beaten Orbán several times and it can therefore do so again.
Source: Népszava; János Dési;

Gyurcsány's road movie in Felcsút achieved a hundred thousand views in a few days

The video produced and uploaded to the internet by former socialist Prime Minister (PM) Ferenc Gyurcsány achieved several hundred thousand views in only a few days time.

Read more: Gyurcsány's road movie in Felcsút achieved a hundred thousand views in a few days

What does DK stand for?

gyufOver the last few days it has become obvious to me that Ferenc Gyurcsány has already begun his election campaign. Zsolt Gréczy's appointment as DK spokesman signaled the beginning of the campaign, which was then followed by several personal appearances by Ferenc Gyurcsány where he began to outline his program. Surely, the amusing video on being a tour guide in Felcsút, "the capital of Orbanistan," was part of this campaign. So, it's time to talk about the party program of the Demokratikus Koalíció, especially since only yesterday Attila Mesterházy answered Ferenc Gyurcsány's letter to him. I elaborated on that letter in my September 4 post.

You may remember that one of the sticking points between the two parties was whether DK is ready to have "an electoral alliance" as opposed to "a political alliance." Gyurcsány in his letter to Mesterházy made light of the difference between the two, but as far as the socialists are concerned this is an important distinction. Yesterday Attila Mesterházy made that crystal clear in his answer to Gyurcsány which he posted on his own webpage. According to him, a "political alliance" means the complete subordination of individual parties' political creeds to the agreed upon policies. In plain language, DK "will have to agree not to represent its own political ideas during the campaign."

Since DK's program thus became one of the central issues in the negotiations it is time to see in what way DK's vision of the future differs from that of MSZP and Együtt 2014-PM. Here I'm relying on Tamás Bauer's list of the main differences.

(1) An MSZP and Együtt 2014-PM alliance following an electoral victory will only amend the new constitution and the cardinal laws that are based on this new constitution. The Demokratikus Koalíció, on the other hand, holds that the new constitution is illegitimate because it was enacted without the participation of the opposition. Therefore, according to DK, the new constitution must be repealed and the constitution of the Republic must take its place.

(2) MSZP-E14 by and large accepts the policy of Viktor Orbán on national matters and would allow people living outside of the borders to vote in national elections. The Demokratikus Koalíció rejects this new law and would put an end to these new citizens' voting rights.

(3) MSZP-E14 does not seem to concern itself with the relation of church and state or the Orbán government's law on churches. DK would restore the religious neutrality of the state and would initiate a re-examination of the agreement that was concluded between Hungary and the Vatican or, if the Church does not agree to such a re-examination, DK would abrogate the agreement altogether.

(4) MSZP-E14 talks in generalities about the re-establishment of predictable economic conditions and policies that would be investment friendly but it doesn't dare to reject such populist moves as a decrease in utility prices or the nationalization of companies. Only DK is ready to openly reject all these.

(5) MSZP-E14 accepts the tax credits that depend on the number of children and therefore supports an unjust system. DK, on the other hand, wants to put an end to this system and to introduce a system that treats all children alike.

(6) Együtt2014-PM opposes the concentration of land that is necessary for the creation of a modern and effective agriculture. The policy of small landholdings was the brainchild of the Smallholders Party, which was largely responsible for the collapse of Hungarian agriculture after the change of regime. MSZP is against foreign investment in Hungarian agriculture. The Demokratikus Koalíció intends to liberalize the agricultural market. DK thinks that agricultural cooperatives should be able to purchase the land they currently cultivate. It also maintains that foreign capital should be able to come into Hungary in order to make Hungarian agriculture competitive again.

(7) The attitude of MSZP and Együtt 2014-PM toward the conflicts between the European Union and the Orbán government is ambiguous, while the Demokratikus Koalíció unequivocally takes the side of the institutions of the Union against the Orbán government.

These are the points that Tamás Bauer mentions. But as the Gyurcsány campaign unfolds more and more differences will be visible. For example, only yesterday Gyurcsány talked about his ideas to abolish the compulsory retirement age and to financially encourage people to demand higher wages in order to maximize their pensions after retirement. During this talk in Nyíregyháza Gyurcsány made no secret of the fact that his party is working on its election program.

So, it seems to me that the Gyurcsány campaign has already begun. Maybe I'm wrong and Gyurcsány will give up all his ideas and will line up behind MSZP-E14, but somehow I doubt it. Even if he tried, he couldn't. Temperamentally he is not suited for it.

Meanwhile, an interesting but naturally not representative voting has been taking place in Magyar Narancs. Readers of the publication are asked to vote for party and for leader of the list. DK leads (52%) over Együtt 2014 (29%) and Gyurcsány (54%) over Bajnai (32%). Of course, this vote in no way reflects reality. What it does tell us is that the majority of readers of Magyar Narancs are DK supporters. Something that surprised me. If I had had to guess, I would have picked Együtt2014.

As for Ferenc Gyurcsány's visit to Felcsút, I wrote about it a couple of days ago. The video is now out. This morning I decided to take a look at it because from Zsolt Gréczy's description on ATV's Egyenes beszéd the whole scene of Fidesz cameras following them everywhere sounded hilarious . At that time the video had been viewed by about 5,000 people. Right now the number of visitors is over 53,000.

Clips from The Godfather are juxtaposed with scenes from Felcsút. The video ends with the wedding of Vito Corleone's daughter. While Gyurcsány is narrating the enrichment of the Orbán family, two people, one of whom is the Fidesz regional secretary and the other perhaps the cameraman of the Puskás Academy, follow him everywhere and record his every move and word. Definitely worth seven minutes of your time.

Since I am no fortune teller I have no idea what will happen. A couple of things, though, I'm pretty sure of. DK will never agree to drop Gyurcsány as their party leader. And Mesterházy indicated that this might be one of the MSZP demands for an agreement. Or at least that Gyurcsány not be DK's top candidate, or possibly any candidate. Otherwise why would he have asked: "Are those media predictions that the Demokratikus Koalíció plans to nominate the chairman of the party, Ferenc Gyurcsány, for the second slot on the list true?"

At first reading I didn't notice this linguistic oddity. The letter is addressed to "Dear Mr. Party Chairman, dear Feri" and continues in the second-person singular: "te." Now that I returned to the sentence in order to translate it, suddenly I noticed that Mesterházy switched from "te," which in a personal letter would have been normal, to "Ferenc Gyurcsány" in a letter addressed to Ferenc Gyurcsány.

What will the final result be? I have no idea. Let's put it this way, it's much easier to predict the outcome of Hungarian soccer matches than the outcome of opposition politics.

Do the Socialists want Gyurcsány to be back on board?

33848 mesterhazygyurcsanyAnalysing the conflict-ridden relationship between MSZP and its former leader it seems that the Socialists are not at all keen on having Gyurcsány back on board. The MSZP did offer cooperation to four small parties, including DK while wrangling with Bajnai's E14, but has much less incentive to embrace them after coming to terms with Bajnai. Substantial divergences between the two sides – Gyurcsány would cancel the vote for transborder Hungarians while MSZP and E14 would not; the Socialists want to abolish tuition fees which Gyurcsány wants to retain; finally, MSZP and E14 both stand for a progressive income tax. But over and above such policy differences is the perception among MSZP leaders that Gyurcsány is deeply unpopular. The former prime minister is now relegated to the status of one of the very minor partners, and Panyi thinks MSZP is unlikely to offer him more than one or two districts.
Szabolcs Panyi,

FreeHungary Editorial: The failure of the Hungarian public opinion

It was only a question of time, and it duly arrived. I am talking about the latest episode of anti-Semitic outburst that happened a week ago against MTK Budapest, a club well-known for its Jewish associations since its foundation. As painful as it is to admit to ourselves, today MTK stands for a separate Jewish identity, and as such, it always will be a good target. Hating MTK is a not-so-secret way of hating the Jews. The fact that the leading voices behind these attacks come from the supporters of the most popular club in Hungary is very disturbing. Ferencváros has a history of anti-Semitic and racist behaviour, which is unparalleled in the Hungarian football scene. I think I am not alone if I say that chanting „the train is departing to Auschwitz" and remembering a war criminal, who sent thousands of Jews to their deaths is completely unacceptable and stomach churning. Even worse, these incidents are always bound to happen when Ferencváros plays MTK. What cannot be grasped by any thinking person is how can these shameful incidents occur time and again without any consequence? Why can't the leaders of the club take any action in order put an end to these atrocities? Only a week ago, supporters of Ferencváros remembered László Csatáry, a war criminal, who was among the Simon Wiesenthal Centre's 10 most wanted criminals. The response from the leaders of the club was tragic. Gábor Kubatov, who is the chairman of Ferencváros, called on the people who held the banner glorifying Csatáry to give themselves up to the police, and to apologise publicly. This proves that the chairman cannot be taken seriously, and the only thing he wants is to exempt himself from all responsibilities. The saddest part of the story is the way the rest of the supporters behaved. They could have booed, or profess their dislike in any other way. Instead, they sat there, fully resigned to what was happening in front of their eyes. What about MTK? Why couldn't they just walk off the pitch? If a black player is insulted, he usually walks off. In Hungary, if a whole minority if offended in the most disgusting way, resignation is the answer. However, this incident, no matter how shameful, was good for at least two reasons. First, it showed that the Hungarian public opinion is not a sufficient counterweight to anti-Semitism. Secondly, it showed that the big anti-fascist gathering of last February was completely useless. Back then we thought that something really important happened. The events of last week proved that what happened in February was nothing but a week of euphoria, when our politicians could bask in the praise of the international media. The reason we have people like Márton Gyönygyössy in the parliament is that we simply cannot or don't want to put an end to the rampant anti-Semitism in the public sphere. And no matter how many more demonstrations we organise, if meaningful action is not taken, those demonstrations will be nothing but a byword for self-deception.

László Társi; Freehungary; August 25. 2013.

Balázs Böcskei: Bajnai is responsible for everything

Liberal authors - Bálint Magyar, Zoltán Ádám - accused recently Gordon Bajnai, leader of E14-PM of abandoning liberal principles and capitalism. The critics – former Free Democrats – cannot see, that the political reality is "a Hungary of workfare and unemployment" where the lofty principles of free market liberalism are hard to grasp and even harder to like. The Socialists have proved unable to increase their constituency (from 11 to 15 per cent of the total electorate) and are mostly concerned with keeping Bajnai at bay, so the leader of E14-PM has no choice but to reach out to disappointed voters on the left. What Gordon Bajnai lacks is not principles but a political sense and presence. The Free Democrat version of capitalism has no political support in Hungary, and the little it has can go to those Socialists who have allied themselves with a liberal splinter group of former Free Democrats, following the tradition of former Socialist-Free Democrat coalitions. Bajnai's alliance with a new type of left – a green and anti-globalist splinter group of the LMP – is an advantage, not a liability.

Magyar Narancs, Balázs Böcskei

János Dési: back to Europe!

The Orbán regime and Hungary are getting further from the European norms. The checks and balances are gone. The right to private property is not untouchable any more. The power can expropriate as recent years' examples show it. The private pension funds got nationalized, the building societies are being taken over by the state. Summarize, the legal certainty becomes a memory. Just like stability, solidarity, independent courts and separation of church and state. Meanwhile, legislation is more and more personalized.

A tiny minority has huge estates, while the rest is rewarded with poverty and defencelessness. It is like Latin America couple of decades ago.

The other is the silly fight against the European Union. The money and the access to EU funds are desperately needed, otherwise it is not their business what is happening in Hungary..

Democratic opposition's main claim should be 'Back to Europe'. There is no other viable road for Hungary than integrating to (Western) Europe.

It has to be admitted Rákóczi boulevard (once a glittering high street in the center of Budapest which has been slammed for decades) is still far from Vienna's Kartner Strasse, even though many hoped quick progress at the transition.

If nothing changes we have to learn streets of Tirana as the country is heading to that direction.

Back to Europe! Where the different political powers respect each other. At least on a minimum standard. Where nobody wants to transform the legal so radically as Orbán administration has done it since 2010.

Back to Europe! Ceterum censeo: Orbán has to leave!

János Dési is deputy editor in chief of Népszava; source: Népszava

The Secret Diaries of Viktor Orbán

Monday 1 July 2013

Since Fidesz won the general election in 2010, we have used our two thirds majority to consolidate my power, and to crush any opposition to me. All independent minded journalists have been sacked from the state controlled news agency, MTI, which ensures that the majority of Hungarians will only hear the good news. The head of the judiciary is a family friend – she has considerable powers, such as deciding which cases can be heard in which courts, to make sure we get the right result. All "independent committees" have been filled with Fidesz members for a period of 9 years. All civil servants who worked for the previous regime in any managerial capacity have been fired. The constitutional court has been stripped of most of its powers. Theatre directors with the wrong political leanings have been sacked. And so on.

I have used my power to enrich my friends. Many have won tenders to lease agricultural land from the state at ridiculously low rents, while local farmers have lost out on such deals. We have reduced the number of shops licensed to sell tobacco from 40,000 to 5,500. Licenses are only given to those who can prove that they are loyal party members. We will introduce similar schemes for pharmaceuticals and liquor in the near future.

I am turning Hungary into a one party state again, just like it was before 1989. People think I was opposed to the communist system because I believe in freedom. That is wrong. I was against the communist system because it was imposed by a foreign body. I am all in favour of a totalitarian dictatorship, provided that the dictator is Hungarian, and preferably me.

But now all my good work is at risk. The European Union are sticking their noses into our business, saying that our laws go against the spirit of the treaties that we signed when we joined the E.U. A Portuguese member of the European Parliament, Ruis Tavares was commissioned to write a report on the situation in Hungary. Without going into the details, his report recommends that we should be made to change many of our laws back, such as those that stripped the constitutional court of many of its powers. Our election should be monitored. It also recommends much closer monitoring of Hungary's new laws, and threatens to take away Hungary's power to vote in E.U. issues if we do not comply.

So having eroded all opposition to my powers at home, I now face foreign road blocks. But I will not accept these – oh no. I want absolute power, and I won't let anyone or anything get in my way!

Tuesday 2 July 2013

After a meeting with my new friend, Robert Fico of Slovakia, I flew to Strasbourg to attend the European Parliament debate on the Tavares Report. I am hoping that I will be able to get the support of our partners, the European Peoples party and the other conservatives, so they will vote against the report. There are 275 members of the European Peoples Party and probably another 100 or so conservatives and Eurosceptic members, so we should be able to get 351 people to vote against the report.

During my address to the Parliament, I was quite civil. I told them that I totally respect the European Parliament. I could not discuss the substance of the report, because frankly it is totally correct. So instead I talked about how we Hungarians stood up for freedom in 1956, and about how we are now the most economically successful country in the union, so we should not be punished by having our freedom taken away by the recommendations of this report. Totally irrelevant to the discussion of course, but hopefully it will convince those foreign conservatives that I am a really reasonable guy, and would never dream of taking away the democratic rights of my citizens.

The vote is tomorrow. Hopefully I may have swung it!

Wednesday 3 July 2013

The results of the vote came in today. Shit! 370 supported the Tavares report, 249 voted against and 82 abstained. So that means that even some members of the European Peoples Party did not vote against the report. Traitors! I thought I was popular in EPP circles.

I was so angry that I made a statement in which I accused the European Parliament of being controlled by the banks and other big business interests that our government has harmed. Total nonsense of course – most of those lefties who voted in favour of the report hate big business as much as I do. But the badly informed Hungarians who vote for me don't know that.

Friday 5 July 2013

Today Parliament passed a resolution condemning the decision of the European Parliament to support the Taveres Report.

My favourite part of the resolution is the following:

"The Parliament of Hungary is surprised that the European Parliament passed a decree that it had no right to pass, which exceeded its jurisdiction. The European Parliament made demands, introduced new procedures, and created institutions that violate Hungary's sovereignty as guaranteed in the fundamental treaty.

With this decision the European Parliament went against basic European values and led the Union on a dangerous path.

The Hungarian Parliament is further worried by the undue influence of business interests that underlie this abuse of power."

So where will this lead? Hopefully there will be pressure from the Hungarian people for us to leave this awful union and become an independent nation again. And we can pull out of the E.U.

Financially that would be a disaster for our country.

But at last I would have absolute power!

FreeHungary; July 7. 2013.

The Secret Diaires of Viktor Orbán

Friday 15 June 2013

Today Foreign Minister Martonyi had a meeting with the Venice Commission to discuss their findings on our fourth amendement to the constitution. The Venice Commission had expressed their opinion that Hungarian democracy is sliding backwards. We needed a strategy for the meeting.

We decided to claim that much of the misunderstanding was due to poor translation of the document. When we said that the constitutional court may not refer to previous decisions, we actually meant to say that the constitutional court may look into previous decisions.

And when we said that my wife's friend, head of the judiciary, has the right to move any case to any court in the country, to ensure that we get the right judge, we meant that she does not have the right to do such a thing.

Monday 17 June 2013

Damn, we had to announce yet more increases in tax. We are not going to meet our budget deficit target of 3% this year, due to drop in the number of bank transactions as a result of our bank transaction tax. People are using their credit cards more to avoid the transaction tax. So we have increased the tax.

Tuesday 18 June 2013

Today's character assassination candidate was Viviane Reding, E.U. Commissioner for Justice. Reding has been an avid critic of Fidesz. Pay back time.

One of the government controlled papers, Magyar Nemzet - "The Hungarian Nation" - published an article claiming that Reding had been overheard telling a meeting of liberals and commies in England that if Fidesz wins next years elections, she will publicly doubt the validity of the elections. The paper claimed that she has been put up to this task by Gyurcsány and Bajnai and that they are all being sponsored by US based multi nationals.

We have acted in indignation to this report and demanded her resignation. That should teach her, or anyone else who dares to criticise Fidesz.

Wednesday 19 June 2013

Damn the E.U. have refused to sack Reding, and to even investigate our allegations, calling them stupid and childish! How dare they?

Gyula Horn, Prime Minister of Hungary from 1994 to 1998 died today. He is remembered as the man who broke the iron curtain, since as foreign minister, in 1989, he opened the border between Hungary and Austria, allowing thousands of East Germans to escape from the communist block. According to many historians, this was the start of the end of communism in Central and Eastern Europe.

Naturally Fidesz has never given much credit to this great man – he was our political opponent, so we felt it was fair game to falsely accuse him and his government of corruption, and to make (false) allegations about his role in fighting his own countrymen during the uprising of 1956. Still, we don't mention that now.

Thursday 20 June 2013

Time to throw more dirt at Bajnai. According to an article in right wing weekly, Heti Válasz claimed that Bajnai's businesses pay tax in Austria, not Hungary.

So our spokesmen, Róbert Zsigó went out and told the press that Bajnai and his family are dodging taxes, costing the Hungarian State Billions.

Not true of course, but we usually find that when we make claims of corruption against our opponents, the Hungarian electorate usually believe them. When the courts make us apologise, like they have done many times before when Bajnai has sued us for libel, the public are simply not informed. We control the media after all.

Thursday 27 June 2013

My friend and founding member of Fidesz Zsolt Bayer called me today. He was upset about losing a libel case. Klubrádió had claimed that some comments he made in a newspaper article were anti Semitic. Zsolt sued them for libel. The court ruled against Zsolt, on the basis that when he said it was a shame that the massacre of the Jews in the forest of Orgovány in 1920 had not been completed, that was actually anti Semitic.

Our political opponents will not doubt demand that Zsolt is expelled from Fidesz, but that is not going to happen. Loyalty is our number one rule in Fidesz.

Friday 28 June 2013

I was in Brussels today for a meeting of E.U. Prime Ministers. Afterwards, I told the press that I looked around the table, and there was not one Prime Minister whose country was successful economically, except for Hungary. Not quite true really – in fact one could call that a blatant lie. But Gyurcsány admitted in 2006 that he had lied about the state of the economy to win the election. Why shouldn't I do the same?

FreeHungary; June 30. 2013.

Bajnai and Transylvania: leaving the comfort-zone

The media, especially on the right, was put off by Bajnai's strategy not to seek heavyweight media coverage. Bajnai met a mixed crowd, listening to everyone and not asking for votes. His intentions might be better described as a cautious first attempt to look for potential allies, by seeking out future voters among minority Hungarians who are not politically committed. While Fidesz has a strong presence in Transylvania, they are unable to gather Hungarian votes around Bishop László Tőkés, their favoured minority politician. MSZP, on the other hand, made a hard-to-forget blunder when Socialist MP Tibor Szanyi called a group of Transylvanian Hungarians Romanians. Bajnai offered a different style by "leaving his comfort zone", as attested by the sudden appearance of the young protesters, people close to the most right-radical Hungarian group in Transylvania.

Source:, Transindex

Balázs Böcskei: Delusions and realities

The two opposition parties (Socialists and E14) fail to notice and acknowledge their assets and liabilities. Attila Mesterházy, the head of the Socialists seems to be a much-better-than-expected tactician who succeeded in reining in the older generation of Socialists and getting rid of former PM and party chairman Ferenc Gyurcsány. Yet, according to the polls, the MSZP’s present support is only 14% –worse than in 2009 when Ferenc Gyurcsány stepped down as prime minister. While the majority of respondents would like to see Fidesz go, they prefer Gordon Bajnai (leader of E14) to Mesterházy as a candidate for prime minister – except Socialist voters who prefer Mesterházy. Bajnai has a much smaller reach and support, but despite the complaints that his party bites into the Socialist base, Together 2014 (E14) has also mobilized 250,000 undecided voters. The MSZP is the best organised and the strongest component of a future opposition alliance, but it is the least capable of attracting new voters. It will not be difficult for Mesterházy to agree with Bajnai’s drive for “an epochal change”, but Böcskei does not go so far as to propose that the Socialist leader give up his ambition to be the candidate for Prime Minister.

Balázs Böcskei, founding director of the IDEA think tank, Népszabadság

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Written on 09/12/2015, 14:16 by admin
the-secret-diaries-of-viktor-orban-nov-dec-2015November 14th 2015I awoke to the shocking news about the Paris attacks last night. Words cannot express my feelings of shock.It turns out that one of the...
Written on 12/11/2015, 14:31 by admin
spies-in-the-newsroom   According to a new scheme, the government might place spies in the newsrooms, to have a better view of what is being written. This all...
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