Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Wanted to ask you what you think of the current state of the opposition. Because whilst there have been attempts to mobilise, I have to say that I think most people are swallowing the government line on the EU 'picking on' Hungary, combined with a general failure to recognise the deep shit Hungary is in economically.

Unless something big happens this year it doesn't look to me as if any electoral force will emerge from Milla/Solidaritas - which means the lineup in 2014 will be MSZP/DK, a separate LMP which is increasingly looking up for coalition with Fidesz, and a smattering of small, barely organised leftist parties unable to get beyond the 5%.

In summary, any failure to organise this year will bring MSZP back from the dead, and people opposed to the government will have little choice but to put on a noseclip. And this looks to me like an increasingly likely scenario, despite the MSZP still acting stupidly (eg their call to "bring back MALEV") and failing to consider the reasons for their failure in office.

by car05 on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 05:57:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
what you think of the current state of the opposition

A bunch of hapless idiots (to borrow from Bayer)...

  • Milla is openly dissing Szolidaritás for organising the March 10 protest without consulting them,
  • Kornél Árok organised that silly ersatz Opposition Round Table with left-wing parties only which instantly fell apart,
  • for this (but officially for forming a party of his own) Árok was kicked from Szolidaritás,
  • LMP, whose december 23 civic resistance protest was hijacked by the Socialists and Gyurcsány, now attempted to hijack the students' protest, for which the students openly blasted them...

I think most people are swallowing the government line on the EU 'picking on' Hungary

I just don't know. I haven't seen a poll, I didn't hear people on the train talking about this, I haven't seen a single anti-EU graffiti (compare to the "D-209" and "Elkúrtad!" graffiti waves against former Socialists PMs Medgyessy resp. Gyurcsány) and people I know aren't a representative sample. If a majority feels the EU is picking on Hungary, then I think a wide majority of those is watching it with fatalism.

any electoral force will emerge from Milla/Solidaritas

We'll see what will become of 4K!, once they turn a party officially (always the pessimist, I won't hold my breath though).

will bring MSZP back from the dead

I don't think it was ever completely dead, or will become. They are well footed in a wide grassroots base, who won't go away even if what is left is a bunch of stupid and/or corrupt people. The best scenario would be to reduce MSzP to a dwarf like the unreconstituted commies (Munkáspárt). But, the likeliest scenario is what you write, a return of an MSzP who haven't learnt anything and haven't faced up to past mistakes.

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

by DoDo on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 09:25:29 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The weird thing is that whilst I got very angry at Gyurcsany during his disastrous/clumsy period as PM, I actually think DK look like they may turn out more promising than the MSZP in some ways. They may actually have a better grasp and understanding of what's going on, even if they totally fail to offer much other than neo-liberalism. At the core of it, I suspect many in the upper-working/middle class no longer trust the MSZP as effective administrators.

The opportunity for DK is bigger than I initially thought it would be, if they manage two things: a) provide a lead candidate other than Gyurcsany to deflect the light b) think about positive reforms people would actually vote for (eg in relation to education, freedom of information, housing). The first of these currently seems less likely.

by car05 on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 10:13:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Regarding a), isn't DK all about Gyurcsány? I think he is the only real Homo politicus among all members of the former government (someone who instinctively politicises anything that he sees or happens to him and who enjoys getting into battle, even if the opponent plays dirty), and DK's base consists of his fans. Regarding b), I'm not at all optimistic: a few weeks ago Gyurcsány had no better idea than to advocate doctor visit fees (something abolished in the 2008 referendum).

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:25:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm afraid you're right - looking at http://program.demokratikuskoalicio.hu/ it seems the plans for private health insurance abandoned in 2007 have been disinterred, on the basis of the current universal system being unaffordable - quite astonishing. Note the criticisms of the current system for unevenness of outcome, and then the apparently contradictory advocation of less regulation and private health insurers. And of course, this looks as if it's written by Feri himself. So that answers both questions.
by car05 on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 03:18:53 AM EST
[ Parent ]


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