Orbán’s son liberated himself. When will the Hungarian people do the same?

I will be writing today about a family affair. Well, not quite. It started off as a family affair, but by now it has become a scandal of sorts. Start with a father who always wanted to be a professional football player but who was not good enough. When he had a son who under his guidance seemed to be keen on football, he became hopeful: perhaps the boy. Although he produced five children, all the others were girls. So his hopes were pinned on the lone boy.

The father became an important politician of some means who was powerful enough to provide everything necessary for a burgeoning young football talent. He even established a football academy where naturally his son was a student. Because of his powerful connections in the world of football he even managed to get his son on a professional team–his favorite, Videoton. But the boy’s record was not noteworthy. He played in one game, spending a grand total of ten minutes on the field. Otherwise he sat on the bench. The servile pro-government media tried to cast his ten-minute appearance as a glorious performance, which apparently it was anything but.

Of course, I’m talking about Viktor Orbán and his twenty-two-year-old son, Gáspár. Gáspár’s name was of course known in Hungary, but in the last few days he became infamous.

The Hungarian public was aware that Viktor Orbán would be going to Brazil for the World Cup. The public was told that he was going alone and that he himself would pay for the trip. As it turned out, FIFA paid for his trip and he took his son along. That by itself would have aroused those who are not exactly admirers of the prime minister, but when the hundreds of photos taken of the VIP section at the German-Argentine game showed Viktor Orbán and his son sitting right in front of Angela Merkel and Joachim Gauck all hell broke loose. The general reaction was that Viktor Orbán is a boor who does not know how to behave. He should have known that his son does not belong in the VIP section alongside heads of states and other celebrities. Vitriolic comments could be read everywhere.

Photo EPA / Marcus Brandt

Photo EPA / Marcus Brandt

Gáspár made a mistake his father would never make. He decided to complain to one of the internet news outlets that dared to write about his unusual appearance in the VIP section. And of all places, he picked 444.hu, which is known for its caustic and irreverent style. He practically demanded that the news organ not publish anything about him because he is not a public figure, just an ordinary citizen. 444.hu told young Gáspár that he has been a public figure for some time and that after his appearance on the international scene he certainly is one now. Moreover, newspapers, the editors lectured him, write about ordinary citizens as well.

After this exchange the outrage has only grown and with it the number of jokes and less than complimentary descriptions of the abilities of the prime minister’s son. 444.hu led the way. They called young Orbán “the prince of the Hungarians.” Others followed: “Gáspár or Viktorfi?”

The World Cup final took place on July 13 and Gáspár’s picture appeared in every second newspaper in the world. As soon as he arrived back home he wrote his complaining letter to 444.hu, and two days later came the news: Gáspár at the age of 22 has retired from football. The news was received with astonishment.

It is not clear why he decided to quit the sport. HVG learned that the events of the last few days convinced him that he is not cut out for that kind of “fame.” But I personally suspect that “Viktorfi” had enough of feeling that his football “achievements” are not really his own. Apparently the Puskás Academy’s team has been thoroughly transformed: thirteen players are leaving and nine new ones are joining. Perhaps he realized that without his father’s name he would not have been one of them.

Whatever the case, the media is not any kinder to Gáspár Orbán after his retirement. One sarcastic headline read: “The absence of Gáspár Orbán is hovering over Hungarian football.” Cink.hu called the retiring Gáspár “the Eaglet,” the nickname of Napoléon’s son Franz, Duke of Reichstadt, and what came afterward was a condemnation of the father who put such pressure on his son. “Miserable Gáspár has the country’s most willful sport-daddy, who has the greatest opportunities to fulfill his own ambitions.” Plastic.hu did not feel any sympathy for the oppressed son. If he wanted to be his own man, why did he attend the Puskás Academy and why did he go and sit in the VIP section in Rio de Janiero? Our poor “national martyr.”

Then slowly details emerged. Apparently, Gáspár told his coach after the FTC-Puskás Akadémia game (1-0) that he no longer wants to be a member of the team. A few hours later hir24.hu reported that Gáspár talked about quitting in May while in Uganda where he was teaching children to play football. Gáspár apparently was a volunteer with a relief organization called “Empower a Child in Uganda.” In May this organization put up a photo of Gáspár barefoot like the children with him on Facebook. The text that accompanied the photo read: “Meet one of our New MSTs Gaspar Orban training children in soccer. He is a former professional football player in Hungary who quit the profession after GOD called him to serve his kingdom. He is now blessing the children of Zirobwe village with skills in one of the world’s most loved games.”

So, it seems that Gáspár decided to liberate himself. He just had enough. I wonder when the Hungarian people will decide to follow his example.

Advertisements

41 comments

  1. Eva that was one hell of an amazing story about Orban’s son. I wonder what Merkel really thinks of Orban?

  2. I apologize for bringing another topic here: the downing of the Malaysian airplane.

    The following, deleted but archived remark from the Russian facebook vk.com by the Donetsk defense minister suggests that the plane was shot down by the rebel forces by accident.

    “Предупреждали же – не летать в “нашем небе”. ”

    http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache%3A_iGM8NwBVssJ%3Avk.Com%2Fwall-57424472_7256+&cd=1&hl=uk&ct=clnk&gl=nl

  3. cum grano salis –

    Russian commentators claim that the name of the rebel defense minister, Strelkov was faked at the link above by Ukrainians.

  4. Will Gáspár O. be made the chairman of the

    A: Soccer Association (MLSz) or the
    B: Olympic Committee (MOB) ?

  5. I can’t see what is wrong about Gaspar going to the world cup with his father. The stupid part was Orban Per saying he was paying for it out of his own pocket instead of admitting that FIFA paid for his junket. (What the hell, if he is going to act like a third world kleptocrat, why should he be shy about taking Sepp Blatter’s money. why be so shy OV?)

    Clearly Gaspar is naive in thinking that writing to the media will make them stop publishing stuff on him. It just threw gasoline on the fire. On the other hand, its kind of BS for the news outlets to use him as a punching bag when they can’t lay a hand on the prime minister. It reminds me of the way that the right wing media in the US used to unload on Chelsea Clinton in the 1990s.

  6. At this point we have no clue why Gaspar (or Gazsi as Orban calls him) left. I actually do respect him. I am not sure if it was a “sacrifice” for him to leave soccer behind, and I am also sure he will be able to support himself. There are many people who would hire him just for his name, and it is up to him to prove himself after. It is like Peter Fonda or Jane Fonda, who both received their chances because of their father, but bot were able to prove and make a name for themselves. I honestly wish Gazsi the best.

  7. Regarding the downing of civilian commercial plane.. My experience with the US Army indicates to me that the Russians provided to their allies a weapons system beyond their ability to control. This was without question a mistake on the part of separatists who have been under bombardment by the Ukrainian military. But why in the world would civil air controllers allow this plan to fly over a combat zone?

    Today all ground forces have extensive ground to air capabilities, even when I left the US military it was possible to set up an air defense system in a few minutes. In my opinion the Russians were crazy to turn over to the separatists such complex systems to the separatists who lack command and control systems. NATO should target and destroy these systems as fast as possible and then withdraw their fighters.

    I suspect our Jobbik friends will blame the CIA for this.

  8. István: We are not talking about the downed Malaysian plane here, Gáspár Orbán has nothing to do with it. I am sure the plane tragedy will be a topic very soon.
    On Gáspár, just a little extra. If he is not a public figure and holds no governmental status, he should have no place in the VIP section. I am sure the Hungarian bumpkin, the Stadionbuilder viktor, who has no manners and a stupid idiot as far as diplomacy concerned, must have used some influence with Brazilian officials to have Gáspár by his side.

  9. There was no mistake here, he was invited by FIFA and accepted the seat FIFA provided for him. Why FIFA did it is their own business. It only reflects poorly on 444 if they launch into an angry tirade over this issue. Imagine if the same were to happen in the US the outlet which did this (attack the Obama children over something trivial and let unmoderated commenters run a hate campaign against them as 444 did) would be branded for life and other media companies would distance themselves immediately, never to cooperate with it again.

    But more importantly other media companies now will feel that the families of political opponents are fair game, children fathers mothers. Not a good direction to go in overall.

  10. Some 1: Thank you, we agree. We don’t know Gáspár, probably would not want to, but I tend to agree with Éva S. Balogh’s assessment, that he may have some backbone, and I am sure it is NOT inherited. You see he was born to a couple of invertebrates.

  11. trim: The issue is NOT trivial. There were NO relatives of any of the dignitaries invited and none seated in the VIP section, except for Gáspár. The FIFA officials had to be influenced by the loutish oaf, the great Stadionbuilder viktor, to allow Gáspár to sit with him. Those VIP seats in the Stadium are held in reserve only for Government and FIFA officials and dignitaries. By the way, there is no reason, why any public figure’s children should or could not be criticized by the media, if those children are doing something improper. And since you mention Obama, Michelle and the two adorable children they have, I will take the opportunity to criticize Michelle and the two kids for wearing the South African flag on their visit Nelson Mandela in June 2011. Atrocious for the First Lady of the USA to dress her kids in a foreign nation’s flag. But of course some of us know, that the Obamas are NOT presidential material, don’t know how to behave to represent the USA at ALL TIMES. If they were not black, the media would have taken apart any other First Lady and her children for such an unpatriotic behavior. By the way, one can look back of media coverage of Chelsea Clinton, Liz and Mary Cheney, Tricia and Julie Nixon, and the flock of the Kennedy kids. They were not all positive, rightfully so, some just got drunk, some just party wild, but some got into bigger trouble, especially the notorious Kennedy clan kids.

  12. To me it looks like Orbán losing his sense for contact with reality. Passive football [watching] in his case is also escape from reality. It does not matter to him, that he and his country become the laughing stock of Europe.

  13. Karl Pfeifer: You are partially right. The great Stadionbuilder viktor is an oaf and a ruthless bastard and most of the World, who cared to notice him laughs of his antics. Unfortunately, for the people in Hungary he is not a laughing matter. One can say a lot of bad things about the viktor, but he knows how to create a total dictatorship and make Hungary his and his party’s private principality, in the shortest time, even in the middle of Eastern Europe while an EU member. This is no small feat. One have to tip the hat to him, considering that even for Herr Hitler, it took 13 years (1920 to 1933 mid-July) to make Germany a dictatorship and a single party fascist state. The viktor will probably do it in 9 years. I think he will do it by the latest, in 2018. In 2017 he will become the President of Hungary, with a newly received supreme power from the ⅔ majority of the Fidesz Parliament.

  14. tappanch: You may have something there. Csányi is a so called oligarch, and the arch enemy of Lázár János, who risen in power to be the No. 2 (anyone insert his favorite obscene noun here of what).
    Therefore, when his presidency in the MLSZ expires, or he gets removed, there will be a need for a loyal Fidesz person, who can at least, tell a soccer ball from a basketball. The Gazsi already has this uncanny ability. A little plus on his behalf is the fact, that the dajcstomi, who with his brother owns a soccer club now, likes him.

  15. Lives of great men all remind us / we can make our lives sublime / and, departing, leave behind us / footprints in the sands of time.

    Modified, for OV and OG —

    Lives of great men all remind us / we should leave no sons behind us.

    Poor Gáspár. Fathers throw enough shadow without also being… whatever VO is.

  16. What I see is a nice father son outing… Father is VIP (like it or not) and he (along with his son) will be treated as such, I’d expect nothing less. I don’t see why anyone cares. That the lad wrote to the media saying leave me alone, well, I guess he needs a talking to from PR people.

    The real story is here that FIFA paid for the trip. I bet Merkel’s trip wasn’t paid for by FIFA. In fact wasn’t the president of Germany forced to resign because someone allegedly paid about 700€ for his hotel room?

  17. London Calling!

    You have to feel sorry for Gasper.

    Having been raised in a cushioned lap of luxury – doesn’t he live in the luxury flat in the Buda hills, where his sister has one too? – He has been a complete failure in living up to his father’s expectations.

    And in endeavouring to become a footballer he has not been able to pursue a career more akin to his natural skills – and of his choosing. Thanks probably to his domineering father.

    As a son of a prominent politician he should be afforded the anonymity to live a life of privacy – a principal that is mostly observed here in England, even by our mainly dreadful press.

    It was a grave mistake to attend the World Cup match – but did he have any choice? Even if he didn’t want to expose himself to the paparazzi he couldn’t dissapoint Daddy now could he?

    Son of President Thug is a special case. At 22 years of age he should have become his own man.

    It’s no wonder he’s turned his back on football and found religion.

    If he was sensible he would shed the luxury; live a modest blameless life in prepararion for the backlash that is coming when Daddy loses his President’s funny hat, sunglasses and banana.

    Regards

    Charlie

  18. Are government officials in Hungary allowed to accept gifts like flights to Brazil and VIP tickets to sporting events? Do they have to be reported and reimbursed out of their own pockets? Anything less would have the appearance of a bribe.

  19. The picture says everything:

    A crown prince among presidents and ministers?

    Orbán jr is either an unbelievable idiot not to realize this or he is a weakling dominated by his tyrannical father – let’s hope that he wakes up and sets himself free!

    PS:

    If you look at the careers of the children of famous German politicians (like Brandt, Kohl etc) you’ll find that none of them went into politics – they had careers as actors etc …

    Only the children of Franz Josef Strauß became politicians – and the results were catastrophic (as expected …)!

  20. Much was made in the British press about the bizarre FIFA VIP list. One can understand why Merkel was there – and Putin (Russia’s hosting the next World Cup).

    But Orban Viktor? Hungary hasn’t even qualified for the World Cup in nearly 30 years. One can only imagine that Sepp Blatter has been getting sent lots of free Tokaj recently. Or maybe he’s shown a ‘good time’ in Budapest now and again.

    As for Gaspar being there – that’s entirely a case of Viktor posturing.

  21. googly: firstly, you will be surprised to hear that even Kisalföld (the regional daily of Győr county) has a higher circulation now than Népszabadság.

    MSZP’s refusal to act with respect of Népszabadság is well documented, the party has no idea what to do, nobody dares to decide about anything at MSZP and the party has not enough money. It’s the usual töketlenkedés (lack of balls), as in governance and politics.

    Thirdly, to sell a daily paper to 50,000 people and let’s be generous to get it read by altogether by 100,000 is nothing these days. Especially as the currently remaining readers are all lefty voters, so you will never reach undecideds, which is the most important issue in the media war. You would be stupid to try to spend much money on your voters who need no persuasion or on extreme-right wingers who will anyway vote right, you need different stratgies for those.

    The news show of TV2 (acquired by Fidesz) has 1.2m daily viewers, Origo.hu which was taken into Fidesz’ orbit recently had 400,000 unique visitors, Helyi Théma reaches millions and so on. Fidesz even bought the magazine portfolio of Sanoma, so now the boulvard, gossip magazines are also being practically edited by Fidesz. The new front company of Fidesz immediately fired the editor in chief of the gossip magazines and and the new editor is the lady who wrote the Zuschlag book for Fidesz. Be prepared for ever more cute, down-to-earth photos about Orban’s or Rogan’s summer holiday.

  22. CharlieH: It’s no wonder he’s turned his back on football and found religion.

    I wonder which religion, and is this approved by Daddy?

    I do not think so. He may stop the career of soccer player, but he will be doing exactly what his father tells him to do.

  23. Orban’s practice to bring along a child to various public events has three reasons.

    One, he cannot bring his wife along.

    Orban, like all creators of a dynasty wants an own child to follow him (whatever he created is solely his own, so he will not transfer that to any outsider) and is grooming them for public life.

    Third, being around one of his kid enhances his family guy/pater familias image which is constantly reinforced in countless other similar media appearances.

  24. @Szamba:
    “One, he cannot bring his wife along.”

    Now I’m curious – could you explain why?

    PS:

    Of course nobody else but Orbán brought their spouses/children/lovers to that World Cup event – what they did in heir hotel rooms on the other hand is their own business …

  25. “He practically demanded that the news organ not publish anything about him because he is not a public figure, just an ordinary citizen”

    Silly little boy, if you wanted to be treated as an “ordinary citizen” then you wouldn’t have been sitting in the VIP section of the World Cup Final in a stadium halfway round the world. Similarly, “ordinary citizens” don’t end up as a professional; footballer with the same lack of talent you have.

    Having said that, I do have a modicum of sympathy for Young Gaspar, (unlike his older sister) he doesn’t fall into the usual stereotype of an entitled (and generally) thick Fidesz Brat.

    Very few of them would be seen dead helping out a charity for kids in Uganda. And whilst there is an irony that his bullying thug of a father is presently intimidating and threatening similar charities and NGOs in Hungary that isn’t the responsibility or fault of his son.

  26. Döner macht schöner
    July 18, 2014 at 4:41 am
    googly: firstly, you will be surprised to hear that even Kisalföld (the regional daily of Győr county) has a higher circulation now than Népszabadság.

    Not now, but for a while. Even though Nepszabadsag still outsells Magyar Nemzet by 1/3 and Magyar Hirlap by almost 4 times. So, I am not sure about the point you are making.Nok Lapja, Kikegyed and Story are the best selling weeklies.

  27. London Calling!

    Kisalföld is a dreadful ‘parish pump’ rag.

    Nothing of any importance – wet their pants when Orban came to stick his finger in the dyke during the floods.

    They love to regurgitate items from the English red tops about, for example, English school kids misbehaving on a ferry “look it doesn’t happen here”.

    Of course it supports the Thuggesz mayor too.

    All MTI stuff of course.

    These sorts of papers are free in England and are only ever any good for lining the cat litter tray.

    ….which puts Népszabadság in the bog paper domain I should think.

    Regards

    Charlie

  28. Please try to understand it: a printed daily with 50k copies provides you with zero exposure in Hungary. You can add 8,000 copies of ÉS and Magyar Narancs and Népszava and 168 Óra (all read by the very same group of 75,000 lefty people) and that is still nothing in a country of 8 million voters. You cannot reach undecideds with these titles and media channels.

    Fidesz on the other hand owns the state media (including the MTI news agency which is reprinted/retold without the slightest criticism by private media), the private radio stations, the TV stations and other papers and weeklies which give it an exposure several orders of magnitude higher than that of MSZP (plus the lefty papers always try to be more balanced and critical, while Fidesz’ media empire is one single propaganda machine).

    MSZP and other leftist parties have nothing. They are existing in one single, compartmentalized echo chamber, to which nobody else besides this minuscule die-hard lefty group of 1-2% of the voters listens to any more. Try to understand this fact.

  29. Some1: Nők Lapja, Best, Story etc. regularly feature Fidesz-leaning, government policy supporting articles and bring those politicians in speedos if necessary to the people so that they can show that they are humans too. In fact these titles have been doing this kind of editing for many months now, because the change of ownership has been anticipated for months (of course this could not prevent the firing of top editor at these titles).

    It was an extremely important move for Fidesz to purchase the Sanoma magazine portfolio (through front companies of course) because those are read by hundreds of thousands of women on a weekly basis, and Fidesz needs more sympathy from women. Football loving, sausage eater and palinka drinker men are overwhelmingly support Fidesz and Jobbik, not those effeminate lefty parties.

    Now those undecided, more likely to vote women will read even more about the family lives of Fideszniks and the home decoration or cooking advices from János Lázár or whoever. Hey, those politicians are not so bad after all, they also fight the same everyday problems, like upbringing of children, weight gains etc. Smart move, of course, it could have never occurred to a lefty politician.

  30. The wife of Viktor Orban is Anikó Lévai and now she look like a very tired, wrinkled, thin, old hag, who may be anorexic. She is treated as such by the Great Stadionbuilder viktor. As we can read in a book and some newspaper articles, which are trying to trace the origins and breadth of Orban’s enormous wealth, a good deal of the properties, land, etc., Orban purchased from the huge amounts of corruption money are on her and her family member’s name. Most of the purchases were been paid by cash.
    Anikó used to work in the National Geological Institute and she was instrumental of getting for peanuts Hungary’s only peat mine to Orban’s daddy and some dolomite minds also. Orban’s daddy was allowed to mine on protected lands also and he sold dolomite for many years and selling it now, to one of the iron foundries for multiple times the regular market price. Also, when the Red Sludge disaster occurred and the Government had to restore the damaged land from the metal oxides, it was Orban’s daddy and brother, who brought in all the uncontaminated dirt, for months to the huge site, from much larger distance and for much higher cost than the locally available source. The donation money of about U$600,000 to the residents from around the World also disappeared and no accounting was given by the Orban regime. Only a very, very tiny fraction was given to a few dozen residents. Orban’s wealth is estimated to be around U$2.7 Billion at the current exchange rate and he amassed it in less than 20 years, without working a day in his life in a regular job. They say, that the politicians in Hungary are operating like members of the Mafia and if so, Viktor Orban is their Don.

  31. “Try to understand this fact.”

    What a downright arrogant and insulting way you have of speaking, are you sure you are not Lazar in disguise?

    Try to understand you are only giving an opinion not a command or order.

  32. To add my two-cents worth. Döner exaggerates the small size of the “lefties.” It is true that the number of printed newspapers is small but their on-line editions have a large readership.

  33. D7, sorry, agreed, I may have been arrogant, but it is a bit frustrating to see that people still, after so many posts and comments, still believe that there is a significant opposition/leftist media scene. And I maintain that it is a mistake to dismiss my points just because I was arrogant.

    This myth of a vibrant leftist media is exactly what Fidesz is pushing: that Fidesz is still just “balancing the market” because there is still Népszabadság, ÉS, Magyar Narancs etc. as examples of a free press and a “vibrant opposition/leftist media scene” (when Fidesz just in the last two months purchased Sanoma, alone with a reach several times bigger than all leftist/liberal titles combined, and neutered and purchased Origo.hu the biggest internet portal, index.hu is owned by a Fidesz-beneficiary oligarch and thus index.hu avoids a lot of topics).

    For all practical purposes there isn’t such opposition/leftist media. Especially when compared to the Fidesz managed media empire. It’s not even David vs. Goliath. One can increase the number of readers to include online readers, who exist for sure, but the numbers still represent a tiny fraction of the reach of Class FM, TV2, Origo, VS.hu (just fired its editor who was deemed not balanced enough), you name it. The bottom line is that the remaining tiny independent titles cannot reach undecideds, when Fidesz is still purchasing-subduing anything it can.

  34. “Smart move, of course, it could have never occurred to a lefty politician.2

    First arrogant suggestion on your part Doner. The Fidesz thugs’s capture and destruction of the free media is not down to their inherent intelligent superiority over the typical “lefty” politician.
    Intimidation, direct threats and rampant corrupt misuse of taxpayer’s money in order to control the media is something you may consider as a sign of intelligence, democrats don’t.

    Second arrogant suggestion is that the *news* spewed out by the regime’s tv/radio channels and the neo-Nazi Magyar Hirlap and the Sheep Herald (aka Magyar Nemzet) has made one person more sympathetic to the Orbanists. Nope, it is fascist sheep broadcasting to the fascist sheep. The net number of fascist sheep has stayed constant has it probably always will

    Despite the bribes, the corruption, intimidation, threat and violence unleashed against the free press did the number of people voting for Fidesz increase at the last election? Point proven.

    When the regime and you decide that Noklapja and even TV2 is the method by which they will tap into the apathetic majority they seriously misjudge how unthinkingly apathetic they have made that apathetic majority. They are seriously not interested in watching Rogan in his swimming dukas, far less in the last propaganda broadcast from The
    Truth Ministry, trust me.

    it is a fallacy of politicians and commentators, generally those born pre 80 that today the trad media has any effect whatsoever on public opinion. It hasn’t, oldtimers will read the paper that confirms their own opinion, youngsters either don’t care or will form their own opinion from what the long tale is writing online

    So, sure in a democracy we expect some kind of divergence of view in the MSM but it in the big picture of things the regime’s control of all outflows of information is peripheral to its survival (eg look at how many authoritarian regimes have fallen in the last 20 or so years despite 100% control of the media)

  35. D7: I don’t know where you live, but the overwhelming majority of Hungarians simply does not receive independent reports about the state of Hungary or the world. Instead, most people receive a water-tight world view, reinforced by a whole spectrum of media sources people have access to (state and private radios, local papers, tv, magazines etc.), so that they simply discount the occasional opposing views. They may be discontent but that’s another issue.

    Media-power does work and Berlusconi (sure, he is gone now but he reigned supreme for 20 years) and Putin know it, and the Dems realized it, so that they have MSNBC now to counter FoxNews, hell, Blair realized it and kissed Murdoch’s ass.

    The Hungarian left wing politicians think like you and look where they are, but I guess that’s their business, they are soon to be extinct anyway, their abandonment of the media is but one sign of their incompetence and lack of strategy/ideas.

  36. “I don’t know where you live, but the overwhelming majority of Hungarians simply does not receive independent reports about the state of Hungary or the world

    I live in Budapest and every day I pass discarded Metro papers and the local regime propaganda sheets and you know what? Occasionally people use them for collecting up their dog’s poo and that is about the height of their importance in the big picture. In my opinion (and from actually talking to them) the vast majority of Hungarians couldn’t give two figs about “independent reports about the state of Hungary or the world”. They simply don’t care. The regime is wasting its time (and our tax money) presuming otherwise.

    “The Hungarian left wing politicians think like you and look where they are, but I guess that’s their business….”

    Please do not be presumptive enough to assume you know what I think.
    The Fidesz thugs and their soul brothers in other dictatorships are stuck somewhere in the mid 90s with regards how important the control of a media is. You conveniently ignore the number of Orban-like regimes which have fallen in the last 30 years- they have fallen in almost all cases despite their being an Orban-like control over free speech.

    There is no left-wing in Hungary only people described as such by themselves and Fidesz/Jobbik. If there were a left-wing they would be looking at how to effect change on the ground and not worrying about who controls eg Klub radio or Origo.

  37. Papa Orbán has done this before. I recall a very important football match during his first prime ministership when Orbán – and only Orbán among several other heads of state – had his squirming small son with him. It was clearly a protocol faux pas then, too.

Comments are closed.