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what strikes me is that very little of the Bajnai-Gyurcsány axis is based on an indigenous growth strategy

At least in Bajnai's speech, I couldn't recognise an economic program (unless his mentioning of Poland and Slovakia as countries in the region passing us by economically counts as an indication of one). At any rate, what Bajnai says matters little as long as the two biggest parties in his desired unified democratic opposition power basis, that is both the Socialists (MSzP) and the Greens (LMP) want to contest the 2014 elections on their own (which as things stand would guarantee them opposition status). Then again, I didn't get the impression that either of them seriously considered a new path, and truly realised that the post-1990 recipe of attracting foreign capital by aspiring to be the best pupils of the IMF isn't working. (In fact I was dismayed to hear Szolidaritás leader Péter Kónya mention foreign capital as a basis for the development of the Hungarian economy undercut by Orbán, but not mentioning the flat tax.)

An issue related to indigenous growth did feature in several speeches, though: the brain drain of educated young people, which is on-going in spite of the government's new laws aimed at tying down students in Hungary. (An anecdotal evidence is that the other day I overheard the discussion of a conductor and a passenger, both mothers, about their wish for their children to escape the malaise with the help of their language skills, even if it will be even worse for those who stay behind.) So people are at least aware of the 'human capital' part.

I also walked past the Jobbik rally, which seemed to have a higher proportion of young people than both the government and the Milla demonstrations.

No surprise there, it started as a youth party and still predominantly poisons young minds (which only makes their still double-digits figures in polls even more scary, even if their numbers significantly reduced since the summer according to multiple polls). Perhaps the one difference in protester demographics was the wider class and settlement type coverage of the Milla protest, that is more working-class and more rural faces (presumably due to the joint organisation with Szolidaritás).

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Wed Oct 24th, 2012 at 04:16:23 AM EST
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