Entries RSS Feed Share Send to Facebook Tweet This Accessible version

Opposition opinion makers seen as living in a bubble

November 11th, 2017

A left-wing political scientist finds that the cultures war being waged by the intellectual élite of the opposition doesn’t even remotely intersect with the desires, the complaints and the ambitions of the majority.

In Népszava, Tamás Boros analyses the findings of a recent study by the Policy Solutions think tank which proves that the Left is squandering its energy on struggles that are simply uninteresting for the public.

In its report on ‘the Hungarian Dream’, Policy Solutions found that Hungarians still nurture nostalgia for the stability of the late Kádár regime while aspiring for western living standards. They equally dislike the ‘individualist American dream’ and the ‘Russian type law-and-order-state’.

Boros sarcastically characterises the ‘Hungarian Dream’ described by Policy Solutions as an imaginary Kádár regime situated somewhere along the border between Austria and Switzerland. What he finds more important from a policy point of view, however, is Policy Solution’s description of the preferences of Hungarian society as bearing very little in common with the daily concerns of the left-wing intelligentsia. While the latter is waging bitter wars with the pro-government side about who were the real heroes of the anti-communist revolution in 1956, a 40 per cent relative majority of Hungarians consider the Kádár regime as the most flourishing stage in Hungarian history. Another example he quotes is that of the daily complaint by left-wing intellectuals about the pro-government camp rehabilitating the interwar Horthy regime, while the Horthy era is seen as a model to be proud of by a mere 3 per cent of Hungarians. Finally, while the main charge the left addresses to the government is its ‘sliding to the right’ and ‘anti-Europeanism’ (Boros’s quotation marks), the average Hungarian is mainly concerned about wages, old age pensions, health care, modernisation and the wealth gap. Typical left-wing concerns, Boros finds. It would be perhaps high time to break out of the bubble and speak about what the majority holds as being  really important, he concludes.

Tags: ,