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The party constellation sounds rather familiar except that there hasn't really been a Fidesz type party in Poland, just an endlessly disintegrating and recombining  kaleidescope of right wing groups, ranging from perfectly sane center-right types to the extreme right. I'll try to do a diary soon in time for posts on the Polish elections.
On the other hand the media picture is rather different, particularly the newspapers. Poland has two quite good daily papers - the center left Gazeta Wyborcza run by Poland's most powerful media group which was created and is still run by the old left wing dissident establishment. The second one is the moderate right wing Rzeczpospolita which is an old pre-1989 paper taken over by a combination of right wing dissidents and some more professional journalists. The pre '89 opposition had plenty of journalism experience in Poland's thriving underground press of the 1980's.  Both papers go after corruption quite agressively, priding themselves on taking down crooked politicians and competing to see how many scalps they can land. The libel laws in Poland can be a little strict but nothing like the sick parody you describe in Hungary. Plus GW and its parent company, Agora, are powerful enough in its own right to make them a rather big target for the judges and pols to take on, as governments have found out to their cost.
by MarekNYC on Sat Aug 13th, 2005 at 01:08:39 AM EST

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