Water and politics: The case of the Roma in Ózd

There are times, though not too often, when Fidesz and the Orbán government retreat and give up positions earlier thought to be sacrosanct. This usually happens when there is a big stink. Not just nationally but internationally. This is what happened with the public faucets in Ózd.

Ózd, a town with a population of 34,000, fell on hard economic times when the heavy metallurgical industry collapsed in the 1990s. Ózdi Kohászatai Üzemek had employed more than 10,000 workers. In 1975 67.3% of the men between the ages of 18 and 65 were gainfully employed. Now the unemployment in Ózd is extremely high. Ózd also has a large Roma population. Officially only 7% of the population declared themselves to be of Roma ethnicity, but according to some estimates one-third of Ózd’s population might be of Gypsy origin.

The Gypsies live in several ghetto-like sections of the town. Most of their houses don’t have running water, so these people must carry  water in buckets from public faucets. Apparently there are 123 faucets that serve about 8,000 people. Some of these people live in areas where city water was never hooked up; others don’t have service because they couldn’t pay their water bill. A family of four or five needs at least 100 liters of water a day and, especially in the areas where a lot of people live without city water, there might be as many as 100 people who use one faucet.

Since the city must provide water to the inhabitants, these people receive their water free of charge. The Fidesz-led town hall found the 13 million forints the city had to pay for the water used on roadsides too high. They claimed that the families living in those parts waste water. They use it for washing cars, watering their gardens, and for the children to splash around in. The city fathers, including the sole MSZP member, voted to restrict access to water at public faucets. They completely closed 28 of the 123 faucets and set the water pressure in another 61 very low to discourage the use of too much water.

There are conflicting claims about how slow these faucets became after the town hired a company to lower the pressure from 100% to 60%. The mayor and other Fidesz officials in town claim that lowering the pressure made little difference. (Then why do it?) One of the city fathers declared that the difference between full pressure and reduced pressure is negligible, but others figured that it now takes at least ten minutes to fill a ten-liter bucket with water. A family of five that needs 100 liters of water a day would have to stand for an hour and a half to fill the requisite number of buckets. The men are not around at this time of the year because they managed to get some seasonal work in agriculture, so it’s mostly women and children who carry these buckets. Ten liters of water is terribly heavy, especially for a skinny eight-year-old whom I saw on one of the photos. And he must make at least ten trips. Sometimes quite far. There are cases where they have to walk at least half a kilometer each way.

The water is barely trickling / Népszabadság Photo by István Konyhás

The water is barely trickling / Népszabadság photo by István Konyhás

It’s easy to blame everything on the Gypsies, but one of the city fathers admitted that it’s not the inhabitants of the “segregatums,” as one journalist called these Gypsy ghettos, who steal the city’s water but owners of weekend places outside of Ózd. They come by car and take away 200-300 liters of water. In fact, 444.hu received an e-mail from someone who called attention to a 2011 Google Earth video of a hose that led from a city faucet to a well appointed house in one of the wealthiest sections in town. You can see it on YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P1msthmIB3o

It was inevitable that the decision of the Ózd City Council would become a national issue. Although the city fathers never mentioned the word “Roma” or “Gypsy,” it became a Roma issue. It couldn’t have been otherwise when it is the Roma population’s neighborhood that is without running water and when it is mostly the dirt poor Roma who can’t pay their water bills.

Opposition politicians were on hand, led by István Nyakó (MSZP) who is from these parts. László Varju (DK) arrived as did Aladár Horváth, a Roma activist. There were all sorts of useless negotiations between Nyakó and Pál Fürjes, the Fidesz mayor of Ózd. I don’t know in what language they tried to converse, but the two gave entirely different reports of their conversation. Nyakó understood that Fürjes promised to restore the standard pressure in the faucets while Fürjes claimed that there was no such agreement. Moreover, he made it crystal clear that the city will not move an inch. It is not fair that the majority of the city’s population has to pay for water while others don’t. As he put it, “perhaps the majority of people feel good when they steal, but someone has to pay for the water.” He neglected to mention that these people have no choice because they have no water hook-up.

Fürjes’s claim is especially distasteful in light of the fact that Ózd received 1.75 billion forints from the Swiss-Hungarian Cooperation Program for the express purpose of providing running water to the Roma ghettos. Opposition politician Péter Juhász of Milla and Együtt 2014-PM demanded to know the fate of this money. According to the website of the town of Ózd, work on the modernization of the whole system will be done between 2013 and 2017. Well, more than half of 2013 is gone and there is no sign of any work on the pipes. Fürjes immediately rebuked Juhász, saying that the Ózd Fidesz government is not like the Gyurcsány-Bajnai government which stole the country blind and was corrupt to the core. The money is there and work will begin in November. I must say November’s not the best time of the year to start such a project.

Negotiations between Nyakó and Fürjes led nowhere;  the city was ready to open only one faucet. Nyakó then said that he was going to call on Sándor Pintér, minister of the interior, to force the town of Ózd to restore all the faucets that had served the town’s Roma population.

I must say that yesterday I wasn’t very optimistic that Pintér would intervene, especially after the  Fidesz spokesman Róbert Zsigó threw the party’s weight behind Pál Fürjes. Since yesterday, however, a few things happened that changed the situation.  Zoltán Balog, whose ministry is responsible for Roma integration, announced that he considered limiting water to the Roma ghettos inhumane. Then came the bad publicity from BBC, Deutsche Welle, Der Spiegel, and a very long and detailed article in the Swiss Tages Anzeiger. After all, a lot of Swiss money was given to Ózd specifically for the purpose of making running water available in the Roma ghettos and now the mayor of the town limits water for them even at the roadside faucets!

In any case, Pintér gave a friendly or perhaps not so friendly telephone call to Pál Fürjes, who suddenly saw the light. In order to save face he repeated that the town’s action was entirely legal. But the extended heat wave that hit Hungary after the town council made its decision led him to revoke it. Tages Anzeiger immediately reported the good news. It would be interesting to know whether the Swiss, directly or indirectly, put pressure on the Hungarian government to change its mind on the issue of water supply in Ózd.

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45 comments

  1. your link doesn’t work – the youtube link showing the hose leading to the wealthy persons’ property…

  2. It has been a sad tendency all over Hungary that these blue public wells got closed.

    I remember the wells when we went on hiking trips around Balaton (no PET bottled water then); now the wells are all gone.

    The municipalities stopped paying for the wells all over Hungary.

    As with anything ‘free’, these wells were used the most by the well-off, who had the best means and biggest incentive to do so (biggest garden to water).

    Although mostly – an this is a huge problem – people rather use illegally drilled wells sucking dry then acquifer and also mistakenly believing that water is abundant in drying Hungary (it is a terrible myth, the acquifers are getting depleted almost all over Hungary).

    People are tricky and because of those who abuse these opportunities (Pete’s video is just one, I know similar houses in Western-Hungary), the poor people suffer.

  3. We have a number of these faucets in our neighbourhood and our neighbourhood has a significant Roma populations. I can say that it’s not only the Roma that use these facilities. Just about all of the households that don’t have wells also make use of them. That said, the stand mostly idle. You pretty much only see the old (non-Roma) ladies in the neighbourhood standing around them gossiping. I can’t say that I’ve seen people *abusing* the free water, at least not in our area.

    My second observation is that a significant number (but certainly not all) of the Roma owned homes in the neighbourhood not only don’t have a water hookup, they’ve been built without the possibility of ever having running water. We visited one such new home that certainly could have been hooked up but the house had absolutely no plumbing in it what so ever. The way the house was built you’d almost have to rebuild the whole thing to retrofit plumbing. I could understand older homes being built that way but certainly not new ones. But, it seems to be a traditional way of building and so…. Right, heating, with no running water there is no forced water heating systems so heat comes from burning things. But, it’s not just the Roma burning things.

  4. Let me add that today and possibly tomorrow are the hottest days of the year, 40 Celsius= 104 Fahrenheit.

  5. Stealing water seems to be a Hungarian national sport ahead of football. I forget who told me that a popular method is to mount a magnet on the water meter which slows its rotation. I don’t know how well it works. If it works it does so to the benefit of those who have water meters.

  6. That the “Tagi” (That’s how Zürich’s inhabitants call their paper) report on this scandal is a very good sign!

    To think that there’s no running water – and of course no WCs, no sewer in the 21st century …

    A bit OT:

    Those private wells are also a problem, not only because they diminish the ground water. They aren’t checked for chemicals and really bad things can happen. I’ve written about this before:

    In the village of Zalaszánto so many people got cancer of the intestines that the doctors got alarmed and it was found out that the Aluminum plant nearby had contaminated the water that they got from those wells – now they have water pipes and the plant has been closed, but the soil is stillfull of toxic chemicals and of course some people still use those wells to water their vegetables …

  7. The bad news is the 40 C (104 Farenheit) degree heat for weeks (really zero rain from Mid June until early October, with minimal rains around mid/20th of August) are the new normal.

    In the last thirty years the annual precipitation decreased by 30% in Western Hungary (Eastern Hungary fared better), and the number of sunny days increased significantly (and of course it means more evaporation).

    The increase in daily temperature has no cap. It’s not like the 100 meter run where a human being cannot run faster than say 6 seconds so there is a physical limit. There is no such limit with temperatures.

    Just because it is 41 degrees celsius and this is the new record ever, does not mean in that in two years the new record in Hungary cannot be 46, like it was in Sydney this January.

    Hungary will be baked. It is a plainland and the hot air from Africa cannot flow further north because of the Carpathians.

    We are now a fully fledged Mediterranian country without the Mediterrian Sea.

  8. Fidesznik President Ader apppointed Fidesznik Laszlo Szekely to occupy the last independent position, that of “ombudsman of basic rights” from September 25.

    The ombudsman has the right to appeal to the Constitutional Court in case of a suspected unconstitutional law. This, last valve will also be blocked from now on.

  9. I hope this is an own-goal that shows those Fidesz voters who are unaware of it how hypocritical, racist, and cruel the current government is.

  10. Now we’re waiting for some Fidesz troll to explain that this heatwave must be the MSZP’s (Jews’, evil multinational companies’, banks’, you name it …) fault!

    Totally OT:

    We’re so happy that we’ve installed A/C in two rooms a few years ago when there was a similar heat wave …

  11. “…Pál Fürjes, who suddenly saw the light. In order to save face he repeated that the town’s action was entirely legal. But the extended heat wave that hit Hungary after the town council made its decision led him to revoke it.”

    Something being “entirely legal” in Fideszland – only question, wether or not he boys have had time yet to change the law accordingly, so, who do you kidding with, please?

    Something being “entirely legal” could be entirely anti-human – as the above senseless act shows.

    When this “entirely legal” action has ben implemented – 29.July – the temperature was already up around the hundreds all over in the country, but, Pál Fürjes did not notice this for an entire week.

    Otherwise you can not steal something what openly and freely available to the public, however you try, you know. You can overuse, you can take more than your fair share – could be, since according to my best knowledge there is no water rations per person in effect (yet?) there – so, it questionable statement anyhow, that this is the reason. Not to mention, that in such case the public must have been informed properly, way in advance.

    And even if all it was true, what legal system allowing punishment indiscriminately an masse, since when?

    Empathy and common sense must be strictly forbidden and obviously punishable in Fidesz circles, or it’s a prerequisite to start with?

    This is Hungary, Ladies and Gentlemen, 2013! Hail to the Greatest Leader ever!

  12. Székely Laci is a trusted Fidesznik. He is not trusted too much, therefore usually his name comes up only in the third round. Instead of being a constitutional court judge for example he only coordinated the drafting of the new the Civil Code and the last time I checked he was still a junior associate prof at age 50.

    But he will be a jolly good ombudsman, as he dutifully hates foreign examples and he does not speak any foreign language so he is not into following European developments.

    The other question is will Tompika finally get the media head position? Funny though that they just could not come up with a name in months for that position. Seems Fidesz don’t trust anybody enough, although I guess not everybody wants the public position he/she will be in. I think Orbán also does not trust Tompi enough, as he cannot be controlled at times and he might just do some stupidities, especially as with Tompi, it’s the other way round. He knows about a lot of dirty things (even if much of the info is way past the statute of limitations) and that is the only reason he is kept at all — but he is not trusted that much. Yet, he may still get the position for want of a better candidate. Who knows?

  13. @Oilman

    It is not encouraging that Mr Szekely wants to protect the politicians from public scrutiny.

    “We shall make clear that the person of a public figure is not free prey” [of journalists]

    http://www.nepszava.hu/articles/article.php?id=668170

    As an ombudsman his job should be to protect common folks form the tyranny of politicians.
    It seems he will protect the politicians instead.

  14. LwiiH :
    I could understand older homes being built that way but certainly not new ones.

    They are built like that for two reasons mostly:
    1) The Roma usually self build with little knowhow and/or very little money. They can’t always afford to put plumbing in. This is, of course, illegal, as building regulations demand plumbing, but in places like Ozd I suspect they don’t care.
    2) Another likely reason of no plumbing could be that they know for sure that they will never be able to afford water bills, so what is the point?

  15. I wonder how many of the people commenting on this have ever lived without running water?

    As Wolfi says, it’s not just having to fetch water every day, and not being able to shower (or even bathe easily). But you also can’t use a washing machine, and, of course, there’s no flush toilet (or sewer system). Lack of running water isn’t just an inconvenience, it drastically affects the quality of life that’s possible, and it creates a huge burden of unnecessary labour that mostly falls on the women’s shoulders. Also, if you’re dependent on a well, the water starts to disappear in the summer, and sometimes the well even runs dry.

    The village my wife grew up in had no running water (or gas, originally), so I have had direct (but thankfully brief) experience of what it’s like to not only not have running water, but often simply not to have enough water. It isn’t fun and a bit of an adventure, like a week’s camping, it’s hard and it dominates your whole life.

    That people still have to live like this in a modern, Western, country in the 21st century is damming enough, but that who gets running water and who doesn’t is decided by race and level of poverty is simply obscene, Hungary and the Hungarian government (and not just this one) should be deeply ashamed of this situation. Any decent, humane, government – even a Fidesz one – should be making it an urgent goal to ensure that every household has running water and access to a sewage system (even if only a cess pit). This is the sort of thing we expect from third world countries, not members of the EU.

  16. @Paul

    “That people still have to live like this in a modern, Western, country in the 21st century ”

    Orban has declared that Hungarians are half Asian. Hungary is not modern and not Western.

  17. http://romanianjournalist.wordpress.com/2012/08/29/romanian-media-digest-ceausescus-palace-makes-half-a-milion-euros-per-year/

    http://www.hotnews.ro/stiri-esential-13113420-harta-civilizatiei-judetele-codase-clasamentul-privind-locuintele-baie-interior-alimentate-apa-curenta.htm

    21th century Romania: Only 61 % of the Romanian houses have bathrooms with flush toilets and water inside; 39% of the toilets are located outside, in the yards. EU average: only 5% of the houses don’t have toilets.

  18. The other thing that really got me from those visits was that the well was only a few metres from the toilet pit (literally a deep hole right under the toilet – and boy did it stink!). I don’t know a lot about how wells and ‘pits’ work, or how water travels through the ground, but this struck me as far too close for comfort.

  19. Does anybody know the “toilet statistics” for Hungary – compared to what our Romanian friend posted ?

    Not totally OT:

    We know people (with enough money …) somewhere in Eastern Hungary who have a nice bathroom with a WC – but the plumbing is faulty so they can only use it for a pee …

    For the “real work” they walk 30 m to their old outhouse which is behind the chicken coop. They just don’t want the work and dirt -doing all the sewage plumbing in an old house would probably make it inhabitable for more than a month …

    There’s an old joke on this:

    What’s a gravity-controlled disposal implementation with acoustic feedback ?

    Even more OT (or not):

    My friends who live in a suburb of London in one of those Victorian houses still use the old outhouse as a spare – of course one of the many children’s rooms has been turned into a bathroom a long time ago.

  20. wolfi :
    Does anybody know the “toilet statistics” for Hungary – compared to what our Romanian friend posted ?
    Not totally OT:
    We know people (with enough money …) somewhere in Eastern Hungary who have a nice bathroom with a WC – but the plumbing is faulty so they can only use it for a pee …
    For the “real work” they walk 30 m to their old outhouse which is behind the chicken coop. They just don’t want the work and dirt -doing all the sewage plumbing in an old house would probably make it inhabitable for more than a month …
    There’s an old joke on this:
    What’s a gravity-controlled disposal implementation with acoustic feedback ?
    Even more OT (or not):
    My friends who live in a suburb of London in one of those Victorian houses still use the old outhouse as a spare – of course one of the many children’s rooms has been turned into a bathroom a long time ago.

    http://www.ksh.hu/docs/hun/xftp/idoszaki/mo/mo2012.pdf

    hungarian central statistical office, Page: 67

    94%

    I spent many years in various German big cities, despite the fact that Germans earn much more money, their average infrastructure were not much better than Hungarian.

  21. Moreover Germany lagged in high speed cable net and mobile internet infrastructure. Even the numbers of internet users / population ratio until the end of 2000s.

  22. Statisticer: It seems that the previous governments spent their money in upgrading the infrastructure. I wonder how much was paid for by the EU.

    As to high speed cables and mobile internet structure was in the entire EU lagging behind. But since Hungary had nothing is was easier to install new infrastructure, than to replace the old infrastructure.

    Btw the way I was regular travelling in early 2000 between Hungary and Germany regarding IT servers. The lay out of the cables was neat and tidy in Germany and a big mess in Hungary.

  23. @statisticer:

    It gets us more OT even – but do you claim that the proportion of internet users in Hungary is higher than in Germany ?

    Of course I know that many older people in Germany have problems adjusting to the internet age – and also the German Telekom has problems fitting high speed cables in the country. There’s a village near Tübingen (the university town that we live near in Germany) where companies were really angry because until early this year they only had ISDN with 384 kbit/sec …

  24. Totally OT but very interesting:

    The German tv channel 3sat is right now showing a film about Austria/Hungary in WW1 and the destruction of the battle ship St Istvan …

    Very good film, ionteresting pictures

  25. One of the things that surprised me on first visiting Hungary 12 years ago was how advanced the internet and mobile phone services were. But of course, it’s relatively easy to put up transmission masts and microwave relays, and to lay cables – and it’s worth it because it’s like planting a money tree.

    Things like water supplies and, especially, sewage systems, however, are very difficult and horribly expensive to install, and don’t make anyone any profit.

    Which is why it’s down to governments and local authorities to put in such infrastructure (and pay for it). This is one of their fundamental duties and responsibilities. and should come way ahead of renaming streets, putting up statues to anti-Semites, and building football stadia. It should even come before building motorways.

    My first wife’s grandmother lived, and died, in a house in the East End with no bathroom and an outside toilet. That was over 30 years ago, but still a huge shock to me, I was deeply ashamed that an old woman should have to live like that in one of the richest countries in the world, and just a few miles from the enormous wealth of the City of London.

    I never dreamt that I would find an even worse situation in other ‘civilised’ European countries, thirty years later and well into the 21st Century. And, worse still, that this situation would be accepted by their peoples and governments.

    If we can’t even give everyone clean water and a functioning sewage system, what is the value of all our other great ‘achievements’?

  26. wolfi :
    Does anybody know the “toilet statistics” for Hungary – compared to what our Romanian friend posted ?
    What’s a gravity-controlled disposal implementation with acoustic feedback ?

    Even in Budapest, in those old inner city houses, with those passage ways (corridors) going around on every floor (“körfolyosó” in Hungarian) the flats shared a common bathroom, usually at the end of the corridor. It was called the “Indian Toilet” (Am Ende des Ganges).

  27. wolfi :
    Here’s the story of the ship:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SMS_Szent_Istv%C3%A1n
    There’s a funny scene in the documentation: Admiral Horthy showing off his breast tattoo of a dragon to the German reporter Kirsch – is that for real ?

    Yep it is for real. Here is the same story about the tattoos in a book. From page 211

    http://books.google.hu/books?id=BB3AicjSyLwC&pg=PA211&lpg=PA211&dq=horthy+tattoos&source=bl&ots=m8PVIyHpLM&sig=-cVhHDQzLF8O-SPUo9rT1tPtjjA&hl=en&sa=X&ei=6wsFUtfaO4mo4gTsyYAg&ved=0CEIQ6AEwBQ#v=onepage&q=horthy%20tattoos&f=false

  28. Yeah, I’ve seen and visited one of those houses – which was quite nicely renovated and modernised inside (the outside still show grenade holes from WW1 or WW2 – I don’t know …) – in the street where the famous Jewish restaurant Fülemüle is located (which we also visited).

    In Berlin the architects were even more penny-pinching:

    The toilets were built into the staircase between the floors (so maybe four or more flats shared one toilet – must have been a nightmare!) – that’s where the movie title is from:
    Auf halber Treppe …

    And of course they didn’t build those nice outside corridors which are really romantic btw, often full of flower pots …

  29. Ron :
    Statisticer: It seems that the previous governments spent their money in upgrading the infrastructure. I wonder how much was paid for by the EU.

    As to high speed cables and mobile internet structure was in the entire EU lagging behind. But since Hungary had nothing is was easier to install new infrastructure, than to replace the old infrastructure.
    Btw the way I was regular travelling in early 2000 between Hungary and Germany regarding IT servers. The lay out of the cables was neat and tidy in Germany and a big mess in Hungary.

    Wrong, can you prove that German telecommunication (and internet) infrastructure was much better in Germany than Hungary before the EU membership? Forexaple in 1998 or 2008? The difitalization process of the german society lagged behind the Hungarian…. (percentage of internet users etc…)

  30. wolfi :
    @statisticer:
    It gets us more OT even – but do you claim that the proportion of internet users in Hungary is higher than in Germany ?
    Of course I know that many older people in Germany have problems adjusting to the internet age – and also the German Telekom has problems fitting high speed cables in the country. There’s a village near Tübingen (the university town that we live near in Germany) where companies were really angry because until early this year they only had ISDN with 384 kbit/sec …

    Yes. The german society lagged behind Hungarian until about late 2000s. The infrastructure of mobile internet was backward in München Berlin or Hamburg… Even the high speed cable net were slower.

  31. @statisticer
    What good does the wonderful infrastructure produce if people here in Hungary don’t use the internet ?
    What are you trying to prove ?

    This is a blog about Hungary – not Germany.

    Are you trying a leto on us aka kindergarden logic ?
    Things in Germany, Romania, … are worse than in Hungary … ???
    Please make cleat that you’rwe nit just a troll – there are enough of them here!

  32. wolfi :
    @statisticer
    What good does the wonderful infrastructure produce if people here in Hungary don’t use the internet ?
    What are you trying to prove ?
    This is a blog about Hungary – not Germany.
    Are you trying a leto on us aka kindergarden logic ?
    Things in Germany, Romania, … are worse than in Hungary … ???
    Please make cleat that you’rwe nit just a troll – there are enough of them here!

    And you are the king of trolls.

  33. statisticer :Wrong, can you prove that German telecommunication (and internet) infrastructure was much better in Germany than Hungary before the EU membership? Forexaple in 1998 or 2008? The difitalization process of the german society lagged behind the Hungarian…. (percentage of internet users etc…)

    [troll-feeding time]
    Mind you, the World Bank has all the data you need.

    Percentage of Internet users
    1998: HU 4%, DE 9,9%.
    2008: HU 61%, DE 78%.
    Source: data.worldbank.org/indicator/IT.NET.USER.P2?page=2

    Percentage of fixed broadband Internet subscribers
    2001: HU 0.31%, DE 2.55%
    2011: HU 22.16%, DE 33.09%
    Source: data.worldbank.org/indicator/IT.NET.BBND.P2?page=2

    Percentage of mobile cellular subscriptions
    1998: HU 10%, DE 17%
    2008: HU 122%, DE 128%
    Source: data.worldbank.org/indicator/IT.CEL.SETS.P2

    You could easily have checked before posting.

  34. Marcel Dé (@MarcelD10) :

    statisticer :Wrong, can you prove that German telecommunication (and internet) infrastructure was much better in Germany than Hungary before the EU membership? Forexaple in 1998 or 2008? The difitalization process of the german society lagged behind the Hungarian…. (percentage of internet users etc…)

    [troll-feeding time]
    Mind you, the World Bank has all the data you need.
    Percentage of Internet users
    1998: HU 4%, DE 9,9%.
    2008: HU 61%, DE 78%.
    Source: data.worldbank.org/indicator/IT.NET.USER.P2?page=2
    Percentage of fixed broadband Internet subscribers
    2001: HU 0.31%, DE 2.55%
    2011: HU 22.16%, DE 33.09%
    Source: data.worldbank.org/indicator/IT.NET.BBND.P2?page=2
    Percentage of mobile cellular subscriptions
    1998: HU 10%, DE 17%
    2008: HU 122%, DE 128%
    Source: data.worldbank.org/indicator/IT.CEL.SETS.P2
    You could easily have checked before posting.

    Percentage of mobile cellular subscriptions :)))) In the USA and many western European countries subscriptions are not fashionable.

    They are not realiable sources, everybody can found other statistics. Germany had the worst ratio of internet users during te 2000s in western Europe. Compare the german data with British skandinavian benelux datas.

    Hypernet and HSDPA II coverage was much slower in germany than in Hungary, and they appeared much later in the cities.

  35. statistics :Percentage of mobile cellular subscriptions ))) In the USA and many western European countries subscriptions are not fashionable.

    I wonder if you can read. On the page I linked to, it is written: “Post-paid and prepaid subscriptions are included.”

    statistics :They are not realiable sources, everybody can found other statistics.

    Yeah. World Bank statistics are not reliable. ITU statistics are not reliable. Everybody can write statistics, and my cousin knows best.

    statistics :Germany had the worst ratio of internet users during te 2000s in western Europe. Compare the german data with British skandinavian benelux datas.

    Have you by any chance heard of a little piece of land, with people in it, once called East-Germany?

    Not only are you a troll, but quite an untalented one. Assuming you are of voting age, I suppose your preference goes to Fidesz?

  36. Hey! At least I can use my new favourite impression on this statistics troll:

    He’ s trying a leto on us i e diverting/sidetracking the discussion to something not only totally irrelevant but also not connected in any way to the original point with false data – which are easily disproved …

    Those (Fidesz ?) trolls are getting crazier and more desperate any minute …

    Does this mean that they are not so sure of their win in the parliament elections ?

    Or is it just that they fear for the international image of the present Hungarian government ?

  37. Indeed. I enjoy calling this ‘whataboutery’. Sometimes I imagine they must be giving away copies of Schopenhauer’s The Art of Being Right at rallies, but then I don’t think the book has ever been translated to Hungarian. They must be naturals…

  38. statisticer :

    wolfi :
    Does anybody know the “toilet statistics” for Hungary – compared to what our Romanian friend posted ?
    Not totally OT:
    I spent many years in various German big cities, despite the fact that Germans earn much more money, their average infrastructure were not much better than Hungarian.

    You’ve got to be kidding!!!! Anyone that spends any amount of time in both countries will know that this statement is so far from reality it’s not worth the time discussing the differences.

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