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Socialist politician defends liberal democracy

November 24th, 2018

Former MSZP Chairman Attila Mesterházy accuses the government of building an autocracy and, in sharp contrast to the current MSZP leadership, passionately defends liberal democracy as the only system that keeps the government in check and brings prosperity.

In Népszava, Attila Mesterházy who took over the leadership of the Socialist party from the old generation of party leaders after their crushing electoral defeat in 2010, blaming them for having conducted a suicidal liberal policy, now takes up the defence of liberal democracy. He dismisses fashionable descriptions of the current structures built by PM Orbán as a mafia regime, a hybrid democracy or neo-feudalism and accepts Mr Orbán’s own term – illiberal democracy. Without mentioning his rivals within the Socialist Party, who refrain from praising liberalism, Mesterházy argues that illiberal democracy amounts to authoritarianism, while its opposite, liberal democracy is the only system that keeps the power of the executive within certain limits. He also believes that illiberal democracies tend to rig elections and thereby make the alternation of political forces in government impossible. He explains why a Socialist leader should be a defender of liberal democracy, arguing that this is the only form of government that has brought prosperity to the working people. In his concluding remark he tells his fellow Socialists ‘we are not alone’ and the MSZP’s European friends will help them overcome ‘false prophets’ and ‘create a just and diverse Hungary’.


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