Budapest Telegraph

Democracy shouldn't be synonymous with endless fracas

Thursday Aug 6, 2015

Nóra Diószegi-Horváth | Source: Vasárnapi Hírek

Right after the latest parliamentary elections in Hungary, in April 2014, Kristóf Varga, a public policy analyst and psychologist, was asked why the opposition parties had fared so poorly at the polls.

Q: What strategy the opposition parties should have followed?

A: The opposition parties should have impressed the electorate by exemplary cooperation. Instead, they spoke and acted in disarray. Worse, their election promise was to return to the pre-2010 state of affairs: restore the rule of law and the former constitution and replace cronyism with fair competition. Overall, they promised to restore conditions that preceded the rule of Fidesz. But those conditions are inseparable from the history of the past 25 years. The opposition parties failed to realize that it would be both insensible and impossible to return to a former stage of affairs.



Q: Should the opposition parties now change for a brand new strategy?

Varga: The opposition parties should understand what the people want and how Hungary has got here. The transition was a series of top-down events, which people welcomed but didn’t directly experience. Once the initial euphoria evaporated, they gradually got estranged from the new regime. That has been a source of popular distrust down to these very days.

In Hungary politicians have a fixation on emphasizing conflicts. Though voters demand joint action, animosity rules over cooperation. Ignoring public demand, politicians keep repeating that debates are the essence of democracy. They are wrong: consensus is also a crucial component of democracy. If there were more instances of consensus, the present disconnect between politics and people could perhaps be healed.




Originally published on April 13, 2014

Soon to be covered

Exchange Rates

Currency Value Change
HUF / EUR dec 309,3
HUF / CHF dec 268,43
HUF / USD dec 258,07

Most popular articles