Discover more from Mats’s Substack
putin's bitch in Budapest
is slowly but safely destroying Hungary.
Spoiler: Since he became prime minister for the second time, Orbán’s policies had led to more corruption, less freedom and EU’s highest inflation which he tries to curb with price controls economy. Price controls are harmful. So is Orbán.
Most people would refuse to shake hands with war criminals. Not Orbán. In Beijing, he shook hands with a person whom the ICC has issed a warrant arrest against.
Orbán sucking up to putin
Source: The Internet. I have forgotten where I found it and can’t find the link.
Orbán has several times declared that he despises Ukrainans. His demands for “peace” or at least “cease fire” between Ukraine and muscovy show that he doesn’t care about Ukrinans being murdered, raped, tortured, and deported from the occupied parts of Ukraine. In the EU, Orbán has consistently argued against sanctions against muscovy, aid to Ukraine, Ukraine membership in the EU, but so far caved in when being pressured.
Orbán is a pathetic hypocrite. While lashing out against the EU for critisising his destruction of Hungary, he’s quiet about the Hungarian economy’s dependence on EU funds. Since joining the EU in 2004, Hungary has every year received funds amounting to 2% of GDP from the EU (in net terms). In the coming years, EU funds will continue to be a major source of foreign currency for the economy. As I show in Table 1 in this post. Hungary have received more than the average of the other nine countries that joined the EU in 2004.
Importance of EU funds for countries joining the EU in 2004.
And EU will continue to be very important for the Hungarian economy. Between 2022 and 2026, net funds to Hungary from the EU will amount to between 2% and 3% of GDP.
Orbán has crushed freedom in Hungary to enrich himself and consolidate his power.
Some of his resistance to helping Ukraine is probably part of a sordid negotiation process in which he tries to release withheld EU funds in exchange for not blocking sanctions or aid or demanding lifting on sanctions on Hungarian banks who do business with muscovy. The EU has been reluctant to release EU funds for Hungary due to the Orbán regime’s violations of Rule of Law and its blatant corruption. The corruption has infested the Hungarian society during Orbán’s rule. Year after year, DG Olaf, at the European Commission, finds it necessary to launch more investigations due to suspected fraud in Hungary than in any other EU country.
Orbán insists of winning the DG Olaf competition of most investigations into fraud in the EU.
Source: European Commission 2023. The OLAF Report 2022.
That Hungary is by far the most corrupt country in the EU is also confirmed by analyses of Transparency International, and Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem). Researchers at V-Dem has also shown that corruption and abuse of Rule of Law go hand in hand. Nowhere in the EU, is the Rule of Law attacked as in Hungary. And it began when Orbán became prime minister again in 2010.
Regime corruption and Rule of Law in Hungary 1989-2022.
Source: Varieties of Democracy. Note: Both indices range from 0 to 1. The Rule of Law index is lower, the worse the conditions of Rule and Law are in a country. The Regime Corruption index is higher, the more corrupt the government and its officials are.
The conclusions about Rule of Law in Hungary by researchers at V-Dem, are confirmed by their colleagues at World Justice Project. While the situation for Rule of Law has improved in other EU countries at the bottom of the index, it has deteriorated in Hungary.
Rule of Law index for the EU, EFTA, and North America 2022.
Source: World Justice Project.
This just confirms that nothing has improves since my last post about the Orbán regime.
Au contraire, it has become worse. Orbán has increased that attacks on all sectors in the Hungarian society. The independence of the judiciary is abolished, he’s taken control of most of the media and keeps attacking what’s left of independent media. The academia, civil society organisations, and the opposition parties are and have been this targets for some time now. As Fredom House and Human Rights Watch show, Orbán also attacks the LGBT communities and refugees.
Freedom House, Freedom in the world 2023.
Since taking power in the 2010 elections, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s Alliance of Young Democrats–Hungarian Civic Union (Fidesz) party pushed through constitutional and legal changes that have allowed it to consolidate control over the country’s independent institutions, including the judiciary. The Fidesz government has since passed antimigrant and anti-LGBT+ policies, as well as laws that hamper the operations of opposition groups, journalists, universities, and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) that are critical of the ruling party or whose perspectives Fidesz otherwise finds unfavorable.
The government continues its attack on rule of law and democratic institutions. It replaced a previous Covid-19-related state of danger with a state go danger due to the war in Ukraine, giving the government extraordinary powers to rule by decree and sidestep parliamentary process. Independent journalists, media outlets, and civil society organizations are vilified by high-ranking public officials and in pro-government outlets in a distorted media environment. Discrimination persists against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people, women and Roma. Unlawful pushbacks of migrants and asylum seekers to Serbia continued and access to asylum procedures is close to impossible.
And he’s fucked up the economy and helped his friends
Orbán’s economic policies seem to be tailored to meet the needs of his current and potential friends in business. Low corporate and labour taxes in combination with generous subsidies have made Hungary an attractive place for labour-intensive industries. Not all industries are given a favourable treatment however, especially not those that are foreign-owned with company boards outside of Orbán’s reach. From the 2023 European Commission country report on Hungary:
For example, the government recently imposed administrative price caps and a 90% profit tax on the production of cement and ceramic materials, i.e. in industries with high shares of foreign ownership. In December 2022, the government suddenly increased the tax on insurance and pharmaceutical companies.
The Orbán regime also actively intervened in markets for the benefit of its supporters. The interventions were not insignificant. They were so frequent, large and completely unjustified from economic points of view, that they became part of the European Commission’s country specific recommendations for Hungary this year. From recommendation number three:
Improve the regulatory framework and competition in services by avoiding selective and arbitrary administrative interventions and the use of tailor-made legislation providing undue advantage or disadvantage to specific companies, by applying competition scrutiny systematically to business transactions and by reducing the use of emergency measures to what is strictly necessary, in line with the principles of the single market and of the rule of law.
As mentioned above, the regime has used price controls to fight inflation. Useless of course, the Hungarian inflation is the highest in the EU.
Average (2022:10-2023:9) monthly annual rates of change in the inflation.
Source: Eurostat Database.
Between October 2022 and September 2023, the average of monthly inflation, converted to annual rates, was on average seven (7) percentage points higher than in the country (Latvia) with the second highest inflation rate!
Orbán is a corrupt useless little dictator wannabe who should be shown the door.