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Dispute over Hungarian Zeitgeist

August 10th, 2020

A liberal pundit attributes the continuing popularity of Fidesz to the growing hopelessness of voters. His pro-government counterpart writes that regime change is still incomplete as culture is still dominated by left-wing liberal post-communists.

Élet és Irodalom’s editor-in-chief Zoltán Kovács writes that the government is unlikely to be defeated while Prime Minister Orbán is active. The liberal pundit believes that all strings within the government are moved by Viktor Orbán. Kovács attributes the government’s success to the Prime Minister’s ability to organize and keep together its base, and the overhaul of the electoral system in favour of Fidesz. Kovács goes on to claim that voters support Fidesz despite what he sees as the government’s undemocratic turn, vast corruption and the declining well-being of average Hungarians, because people have lost hope in change, and the government has ‘emptied their soul’.

In Magyar Demokrata, András Bencsik claims that ‘spiritual regime change’ is still not complete. The pro-government commentator thinks political and legal reforms could take place in a couple of months in 1989-1990, but post-communist elites still dominate culture and education. Bencsik, however, is optimistic that the takeover of culture will sooner or later will be completed, and elites ‘originating in the late Kádár years’ will lose their foothold.

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