When facing illiberal regimes, a stream of victories by populists and a seemingly unstoppable retreat of liberal democracy, should we also simply adept to the new reality and “make our peace”? I would argue that this is the strategy many people have been pursuing in Hungary.
Viktor Orbán’s right-wing populist Fidesz party won a third consecutive term in office with a two-thirds majority in the Hungarian parliamentary election of April 2018. Orbán is known for building an “illiberal state”, which he officially announced in the summer of 2014.
Dancing gorillas, yodeling Lithuanians on a canon, gypsy music combined with hip-hop – these are just a few productions from the Eurovision Song Contest 2017. For those who don’t follow every single aspect of the contest, the political significance of the event might still be rather interesting.
Viewing the galaxy as a strictly military dichotomy is a mistake – the Resistance is not only about the war against the First order. In reality, the Resistance has a wider role to play: it constructs an ideological and value-based community. In other words: they live in a political community.
The new conference series of the Republikon Institute and FNF called “Who should the liberal votes for?” continued on January 10, 2018, with a session with the participation of Gábor Fodor of the Hungarian Liberal Party (MLP).
With the recent rise of populism and great popluarity of populist politicians in Western European countries, it is more urgent than ever to talk about the fact that the hours of liberal democracies are numbered. However, the recently published ELF study shows a different, more optimistic picture.
The main theme of a joint conference of the Republikon Instutute and the Israeli Public Diplomacy Forum, which was held on November 15, 2017, was the present state of coexistence of cultures, exchanges of Israeli and European experiences, and the integration of Muslims living in Western European countries.
Karácsony believes that political liberalism works best in Northern states, which are not classical liberal countries, but highly redistributive policies and various welfare state services are implemented. These countries also follow the model of consensus democracy, which should also be applied in Hungary.
The number of Fidesz voters has only fluctuated, but not changed significantly since the last elections in 2014. Apart from the numbers, it is important to mention that most of the opinion polls show that their supporters are continuously getting more homogenous.
There was an intense uproar this April, when the press figured out that Meszaros became the fifth wealthiest Hungarian, as he gained more than roughly 325 million euros just in a year. For comparison, he had around 25 million euros – in 2014, when he appeared on the list of the richest Hungarians for the first time.