February 8th, 2012

Francis Fukuyama: What’s Wrong with Hungary?

I have, to put it mildly, been somewhat astonished at the heated reaction that my blog post “Do Institutions Matter?” has provoked, culminating in a letter from the Hungarian State Secretary for Communication, Zoltán Kovács, to The American Interest complaining about my piece and contesting various points in it. I’m now one of the few Americans to have a web site in Hungarian devoted to my mistakes! In many ways, the vehemence of the response and the extremely uncivil comments that Hungarians have made about each other is a disturbing confirmation that something has gone badly off track with Hungarian democracy.

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  • Interesting Question

    One of the comments to the article asks why are
    Viktor and the Viktorettes so sensitive to
    criticism. It’s a good question. Defensive
    behavior results, I think, from insecurity. It’s
    easier just to call a questioner a moron or jerk
    than to stand up and point out why the questioner
    is factually or philosophically incorrect. Does
    Viktor and his party feel they’ve gone too far or that there are legitimate questions about what they
    have done?

    Viktor knows that unless he wants Hungary to
    experience an uncontrolled default and become a
    Pariah in Europe he will have to deal with the EU
    on its terms and yet he continues to bash Europe.

    Is dust up with the EU about Viktor or Hungary?
    Is this just a massive ego trip for Orban or does
    he really have a plan?

    • Leto

      Why would you be so sensitive if I called you a paedophile cannibal murderer? It’s a good question. Defensive
      behavior results, I think, from insecurity.
      Ah, you may not be sensitive about that, you might gladly accept, would you?

      • Vidra

        I think you have inadvertently answered “Interesting Question”‘s point. Like you, Orbán and doesn’t seem to understand the difference between abuse and criticism, and therefore defends both in the same way.

        • Leto

          Some illustration to the point I made:

          “The infection of brown plague in Hungary”:
          -http://www.parismatch.com/Actu-Match/Monde/Actu/Epidemie-de-peste-brune-en-Hongrie-374640/

          The article then dwelves on that what a horrible Nazi regime we’ve got here in Hungary.

      • Szabad Ember

        @Leto

        “Why would you be so sensitive if I called you a paedophile cannibal murderer?”

        …writes the cat-molesting mother-beater.

  • Curiosity

    Leto

    What is the equivalent of paedophile cannibal murderer in Hungarian politics?

    • Leto

      In my opinion postcommies, that is the MSZP-SZDSZ circles, come close enough.

  • Paul

    Who cares the opinion of Francis Fukuyama. By the sound of his name he is a Jewish gay, and foreigner.

    Seriously: “VO’s “ignore Europe,” (Is this really what he said? Something went wrong with the translation?)
    And still applying for EU/IMF support?

    • Leto

      “Who cares the opinion of Francis Fukuyama”

      The ones this dickhead is bad-mouthing.

      “he is a Je.wi-sh gay, and foreigner”

      I wouldn’t take that alone either a pro or contra argument but apparently you do. BTW, only the latter thing is obvious to me (and that he knows very little about Hungary and he doesn’t speak a word in Hungarian and he gets all his info from dopey liberals like Ms. Schepelle or Mr. Konrád.)

      • Paul

        @ Leto “I wouldn’t take that alone either a pro or contra argument but apparently you do.”
        Actually I think…you and your friends DO. You are proving that on and on.

      • Szabad Ember

        @Leto

        You are clueless; he was being sarcastic, as evidenced by the fact that he wrote, “Seriously” at the beginning of his next sentence.

        • Leto

          You’re the clueless one as evidenced by that fact you didn’t realize how vitriolic my remark was. Poor Paul looked breathless in his post. :)

          • Paul

            “Poor Paul looked breathless in his post.”

            I am breathless a lot visiting this site. Like Francis Fukuyama I am not used to …..”In many ways, the vehemence of the response and the extremely uncivil comments that Hungarians have made about each other is a disturbing confirmation that something has gone badly off track with Hungarian democracy.” quote mr. Francis Fukuyama …this mood.
            I never will.

          • Leto

            @Paul:
            And now you try to play the innocent victim. That reminds me of that when a kid gets beaten up and then he cries out loud to his teacher (‘forgetting’ to mention he had spat on the one who punched him in the face)

          • Szabad Ember

            Haha, wow, you have some serious gall, or you have no clue at all! Of course I realize how “vitriolic” your remark was, despite the fact that it wasn’t very biting. Why do you think I bothered to comment on it? If you would stop being such a vitriolic jerk, I would leave you alone much more often! The main reason I bother to comment on this site is to counter your hypocritical, hysterical vitriol, so that the rest of the world realizes that you are not the voice of Hungary (merely the voice of Fidesz), and to expose your lies and mangled logic to anyone who doesn’t notice it (although they’re pretty obvious).

            Thanks for the laugh, by the way!

  • Siren

    @I.Q. “Is dust up with the EU about Viktor or Hungary?
    Is this just a massive ego trip for Orban or does
    he really have a plan?”
    The simple answer is, NO, he certainly does not.
    The European Union has a weltering burden of problems on the back burner at the moment.
    Viktor and the sexolettes making waves with ridiculous policies and manoeuvres that are intended to take Hungary back to the Rakosi era is a scenario the worn out bureaucrats in Brussels can well do without.
    In fact, please let me know what has happened in Hungary these past two years that has benefited anyone apart from the usual suspects.
    Fidesz has to reform its own party and, ditch the dumbbell, Orban Viktor before he can do any more damage.

    • Leto

      You won’t tell Fidesz what they must do with their party and who their leader should be. The same goes for the Hungarian electorate about their political choice. Got that now, postcommie/left-libe dumbbell, or should I elaborate a bit on this?

      • Szabad Ember

        @Leto

        Oh, please elaborate on this! Dig the hole even deeper! If your cat doesn’t mind going without your intimate attentions for an hour or so…

        I see a typo, so that must mean that you’ve been drinking! This also explains the lack of ability to see that Siren was only making a suggestion, not telling anyone what to do.

        You’re so forceful! I guess you must be a sado-masochist, not just a masochist.

      • MagyarViking

        Leto says:
        February 8, 2012 at 1:33 pm

        You won’t tell Fidesz what they must do with their party and who their leader should be

        But you could not stop doing that with MSZP and Gyurcsány…

        Oh, forgot, you are *pro*-Fidesz and then other rules applies
        Never seem to learn that bit

      • American in Budapest

        We sure can. It’s called freedom of speech.

      • Szabad Ember

        Why haven’t you elaborated on your demand that Siren not tell Fidesz what to do? Did you sober up? Shame, that…

    • Szabad Ember

      @Siren

      You wrote: “Fidesz has to reform its own party and, ditch the dumbbell, Orban Viktor before he can do any more damage.”

      Unfortunately, like Rákosi, Orbán long ago weeded out from Fidesz anyone who could challenge him or didn’t owe Orbán, personally, his or her entire career; I suspect that he also has damaging information about everyone in the party, which could be used to blackmail them. Therefore, there is no chance of a reform, or of truly ditching Orbán.

      For proof of this, note that Orbán has remained leader of the party since early on, despite losing many, many elections. He lost two consecutive elections just in the last decade, after serving only one term as prime minister. A healthy, non-cult-of-personality party would’ve ditched him after the electorate made clear they didn’t like him, but he’s still there, unopposed.

      Also, he might be unable to grasp many things, but Orbán is no dumbbell; he’s a master politician. Too bad for Hungary that he’s terrible at running a country, yet refuses to let responsible people do the job for him.

  • Siren

    SzabadE. I can not agree with your assessment of Orban Viktor in its entirety. Many years ago on this very site someone mentioned that O V spouts what someone else writes or whispers in his ear. The script is written in advance on the proviso that you can fool all of the people all of the time.
    The plain truth is that the politicians in Hungary irrespective of party are bungling amateurs. Nothing is going to change that whatever the weather.
    The only reason (besides his pay cheque)Leto defends Fidesz and Orban Viktor is that he believes the cant and hypocrisy hidden in the Party propaganda.
    The last two years have been a nightmare and, as much as I am not a fan of the European Union, their timely intervention in restraining the antics of Heil! Orban has not come a minute too soon!

    • Szabad Ember

      You may be write about Orbán, but I still don’t see anyone from Fidesz replacing him; he will not leave, and no one can force him to. He might pull a Berlusconi move, leaving the post but running things behind the scene, but he’s done an even better job than Berlusconi of destroying the prospects of every other politician in the country. There is no Mario Monti waiting in the wings, as far as I can see; even Bajnai would be unable to take control in this Parliament, and early elections won’t help anything.

      • Leto

        “even Bajnai ”

        The goose-thief hope of your ilk… :D

        “would be unable to take control in this Parliament”
        “early elections won’t help anything”

        Perhaps a bit of democratization by aerial bombing would help you. Consult Mr. Gati for details.

        • Szabad Ember

          Yeah, you seem really bored with me; I could tell by the big smiling emoticon you put in your post!

          He’s not my hope; he seems to be someone who is well-respected in Hungary, and to be seen as a non-political technocrat who puts his country ahead of his own self-interests. We could really use a leader like that, for a change!

          You love to call him a goose-thief, and he may well have gotten his wealth in a shady manner, but at least he did it before he became prime minister, unlike your lover Viktor Orbán, who stole his ill-gotten gains while prime minister.

          Only your kind would seriously talk about killing other Hungarians over politics in this day and age. You are one fanatical dude!

    • Leto

      “The only reason (besides his pay cheque)Leto defends Fidesz and Orban Viktor”

      Ah, thanks. Must check my bank account balance. I suggest you should do the same.

  • sheesh

    Seriously people, do you really enjoy wasting your time trying to engage Leto in a meaningful conversation? I mean really? You’re a big masochist bunch! :)

    • Szabad Ember

      I can’t refute what you have wrote!

      BTW, your handle goes swimmingly with your post!

  • Big Fish

    What’s wrong? Well, it’s not NeoConservative enough. Like the good ole USofA. FF is a know Neo-C, though of late he has backed-off a little.

  • judas

    to get some of you back on track and into a civilized
    agumenting discussion.

    Francis Fukuyama belongs like Samuel Huntington, tom friedman and Ken wilber to the worlds leading thinkers
    in our time.Each one in his respective field.

    If one reads some of fukuyamas works ,for example:

    “What we may be witnessing is not just the end of the Cold War, or the passing of a particular period of postwar history, but the end of history as such…. That is, the end point of mankind’s ideological evolution and the universalization of Western liberal democracy as the final form of human government.”

    and looks at Hungary i come to the conclusion:

    FF is 100% right. (despite the fact he is not jewish:)

    • Leto

      Even Fukuyama himself retracted this “end of history” BS a few years later…

      “In the latter, he qualified his original “end of history” thesis, arguing that since biotechnology increasingly allows humans to control their own evolution, it may allow humans to alter human nature, thereby putting liberal democracy at risk.”

      -http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francis_Fukuyama

      And no, Fukuyama doesn’t belong to “the world’s leading thinkers in our time”

      • MagyarViking

        Leto says:
        February 9, 2012 at 4:47 pm

        “the world’s leading thinkers in our time”

        Correct, places 1-99 is held by The Viktator Orban, The Supreme Leader, The Great Helmsman and The Twinkle In The Eye Of Every Horny Fideszitas

  • kj

    What is wrong with the USA? What is wrong with the EU?

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