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 Main opposition daily banned in Hungary

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regmelocco



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1PostSubject: Main opposition daily banned in Hungary   Sat Oct 08, 2016 3:16 pm

This morning, the daily Népszabadság - People's Freedom - was scheduled to move into a new building. Early morning, bicycle couriers sought out the workers, amployees and contracted, that they are temporarily suspended, their company phones are stopped, the online surface went down - there is just a brief bilingual information from the owner company, Mediaworks that the company was being reorganized and until the new image is formed, activities are suspended. The Editr-in-Chief, Mr. Murányi learned from the press that they could no more get into their workplace. Although Mediaworks holds many count-level papers, it cited as a reason that Népszabadság accumulated too many losses. 50 billion Hungarian Forints since 2009.
I read NSZ daily and freqeuntly they were the first ones to break fact-finding journalism and ventured to publish many reflective articles on why and how things could go in Hungary and internationally in the background. Among its links you could find many historians clearing up the mud with long articles concerning the Fascist times of Hungary and the Holocaust. Lately they had serious articles about one of the chief Ministers flying to an Eastern county wedding by helicopter, denying it publicly then being crushed by evidence: photographs of him and his wife in the chopper. Another theme of the past few days was that György Matolcsy, President of the National Bank of Hungary, ways living in a luxury apartment in the Royal Castle district which was owned by the CEO of a prominent bank. Although everyone knew there was going to be a reorganization after MW bought them, this morning came as a shock both in style and in gesture. No opposition commentator or journalist dissented: they all think this blitzkrieg is in answer by the Government - chiefly Mr. Orbán - to their latest brave and critical articles.
In other words, everyone is fired or suspended. This smacks of the Erdogan/Putin style and it is a major disruption in the news feed of the opposition. Most major opposition journalists contributed articles regularly with a very colorful range - from bourgeois liberals to echt LEft-wingers, Sociologists, economists etc. and occasionally even past or present government members wrote or were interviewed - the paper was decidedly non-partisan. Think of a Hungarian equivalent of the British Guardian.

A few thousand people gathered immediately in front of Parliament, they burned the copies of government-financed Magyar Idők (Hungarian Times). Unfortunately, one man got a heart attack while delivering a speech and it took him long to be resuscitated by ambulance and medical crew. This made the crowd disperse earlier.
Millions read the paper online for free, and this was pretty much the only opposition voice that could be reached in the areas outside of Budapest.

Hungary has turned into a bona fide dictatorship today.

Many Western papers carried outraged editorials - the NY times, Guardian, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Der Spiegel etc. EU leaders messaged Orbán demanding an immediate clarification. No one believes the economic argument - partly because in Hungary many advertisements which sustain editions are from government-backed companies or those foreign companies which enjoy some tax cuts - and they have been lately practiacally banned from advertising in this daily. While the largest government-run papers are plainly non-profitable, with expenses being paid by the taxpayers.

The fight between the EU and Orban has intensified after he lost the popular referendum - it is invalid, but he still communicates about it as being valid, thus initiates targeted changes in the Constitution immediately, trying to surround Brussels demands' about refugee applications relocated to Hungary with clever language. Apparently he hopes he can still sell his corruption scandals by blaming the non-existent migrants (Fidesz never uses the word "refugee").
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2PostSubject: Re: Main opposition daily banned in Hungary   Sat Oct 08, 2016 6:11 pm

reg said: Main opposition daily banned in Hungary ... Hungary has turned into a bona fide dictatorship today. ... Many Western papers carried outraged editorials - the NY times, Guardian, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Der Spiegel etc. EU leaders messaged Orbán demanding an immediate clarification.
RR's response: This comes as a complete surprise to me, because it hasn't been mentioned on Mainstream Media channels like CNN and MSNBC, which are now focussed on the 2016 election campaigns and virtually nothing else.

reg said: The fight between the EU and Orban has intensified after he lost the popular referendum - it is invalid, but he still communicates about it as being valid, thus initiates targeted changes in the Constitution immediately, trying to surround Brussels demands' about refugee applications relocated to Hungary with clever language. Apparently he hopes he can still sell his corruption scandals by blaming the non-existent migrants (Fidesz never uses the word "refugee").
RR's response: It looks right now like Donald Trump's attempt to become a US equivalent of Orban is going to fail spectacularly at the polls on November 8 and Hillary Clinton is going to get elected POTUS. However, US foreign policy for the next four years is going to depend on which party is in control of each of the Houses of Congress, which I can only guess about at this point. If the GOP retains control of both Houses, the USA will essentially be powerless to exert much influence overseas, and I have an idea this will work to the advantage of both Russia and the Islamic extremists.
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3PostSubject: Re: Main opposition daily banned in Hungary   Sun Oct 09, 2016 9:44 am


I hope the right fragments as it does over here - despite the tyrannical gestures - and that both houses are not going to be controlled by Reps in the US...
What is against this is that people all over the world are feeling the possible die-off and the selection process.
What is for this is that the US, as I saw it briefly last year is not doing as badly as some other regions of the world... it is still the leading power of the globe in this age of technology and energy.
Either way we are looking at conflicts, but it does matter how they are going to come out.
The spirit of the times now I feel is that coverups are not going to stay victorious... stuff is spilling over.
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4PostSubject: Re: Main opposition daily banned in Hungary   Mon Oct 10, 2016 5:32 am

reg, #3:

reg said: I hope the right fragments as it does over here - despite the tyrannical gestures - and that both houses are not going to be controlled by Reps in the US...
RR's response: After the 10/9/16 debate between Clinton and Trump, it looks like the entire American political right is going to concentrate on keeping control of both houses of Congress, but I have no idea what will actually be done to work towards this.

reg said: What is against this is that people all over the world are feeling the possible die-off and the selection process. What is for this is that the US, as I saw it briefly last year is not doing as badly as some other regions of the world... it is still the leading power of the globe in this age of technology and energy. Either way we are looking at conflicts, but it does matter how they are going to come out.
RR's response: Now that Donald Trump has openly admitted to being a wanna-be fascist dictator by saying he'd jail Hillary Clinton if he was elected, the voters on November 8th are going to resolve one of the most important conflicts. Not in their choice of President - Clinton obviously has a lock on that - but on what the new Congress is going to look like.

reg said: The spirit of the times now I feel is that coverups are not going to stay victorious... stuff is spilling over.
RR's response: However, so much "stuff is spilling over" in the USA right now that now that the general public, both here and in the rest of the world, may stop taking ANYTHING authority figures say as face value, and I have no idea what impact that will have on either politics or business.
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5PostSubject: Re: Main opposition daily banned in Hungary   Tue Oct 11, 2016 12:06 pm

RR, I am glad you emphasized this issue of the Houses. Being abroad, and so focused on the single most important issue of the Presidential ballot I honestly did not think about this much.
Now just in case it counts, I just voted (absentee being in Europe) in Massachusetts by email - where part of my family is - including state representatives. MA included a question essentially for the decriminalization of marijuana too - I support that of course. (I might have an allergy though ironically - I will go through some tests.)

Here's an oped from the New York Times in case you missed it: NYT on Hungary

which pretty much agrees with my summary of the situation, and is surpriringly well-informed despite the small size and the distance of my native country.

BTW Facebook allowed me to distribute a meme which sounds more hilarious to a Hungarian ear - I attributed it to an old lady overheard in the park (but in reality, it came to me when juggling with words): "So are they finally going to elect this Trutin guy?"

(In Hungarian, you would transcribe Putin as 'Putyin', since the 't' sound is soft in Russian.
The word "trutyi" means a big mess, especially a lump of suspicious matter, an undesirable mixture).
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6PostSubject: Re: Main opposition daily banned in Hungary   Tue Oct 11, 2016 12:38 pm

Seems like someone thought of this before me... not surprising. (Read one page of political parody.)
Trutin love story
BTW - update on Népszabadság: no change, the journalists are not allowed to their desks in the new building - all they could get is their personal belongings.
The cruel thing is that management already ordered pizza for all in the new place before the lockdown order came. FideSS pretends it is merely an economic affair - no explanation why they didn't let their own staff know that there were troubles ahead, or why they did not try to change the confrontational stance of the largest daily paper (and popular internet news source) gradually.
The only viable explanation which most Western people (EU politicians again sent their dire warnings) as well as local opposition can supply is that it was a targeted killing - this paper should not exist any more, Mr. Orban decided late Friday night or early Saturday morning.

Articles already written or in progress are not supposed to be published elsewhere because the journalists had contracts. Makes me think there could have been something incriminating in that material as there was every day for leading FideSS politicians last week.

Sources of information (confidential by law) are also on the impounded computers. Another cumulative cause for the gov't to step in...

The editor-in-chief and his deputy all thought it was over, though just in case, they show up every day and try to conduct talks with the new "owner" who is nominally an Austrian business holder. They even offered to buy their own paper for shares of one euro each - if the paper produces losses, that is not a bad deal actually... No reply. Yesterday "the guy" was sick. Today he just did not show up.

Meanwhile subscribers called in to talk radio saying they got letters to renew subscription as late as Friday...
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7PostSubject: Re: Main opposition daily banned in Hungary   Wed Oct 12, 2016 4:46 am


reg, #5:

reg: RR, I am glad you emphasized this issue of the Houses. Being abroad, and so focused on the single most important issue of the Presidential ballot I honestly did not think about this much. Now just in case it counts, I just voted (absentee being in Europe) in Massachusetts by email - where part of my family is - including state representatives. MA included a question essentially for the decriminalization of marijuana too - I support that of course. (I might have an allergy though ironically - I will go through some tests.)
RR: I just got my sample ballot in the mail, and the only thing I'm going to study are the ballot measures (referenda) because I intend to just vote for all the Democrats running for office, as I always do. One I'm definitely going to vote yes on is the one to legalize marijuana for recreational use, mainly because it will stop a lot of the weirdness now complicating the sale for medicinal use. I'm allergic to the stuff myself, but it deserves to be classed as a legal recreational drug the same as alcohol is.

reg: Here's an oped from the New York Times in case you missed it: NYT on Hungary which pretty much agrees with my summary of the situation, and is surpriringly well-informed despite the small size and the distance of my native country.
RR: I just read the article and found it excellent, though it contains little I didn't already know from your postings here. The New York Times is one of the few major US newspapers that's the equivalent of the best newspapers in the UK and EU.

reg: BTW Facebook allowed me to distribute a meme which sounds more hilarious to a Hungarian ear - I attributed it to an old lady overheard in the park (but in reality, it came to me when juggling with words): "So are they finally going to elect this Trutin guy?"
(In Hungarian, you would transcribe Putin as 'Putyin', since the 't' sound is soft in Russian. The word "trutyi" means a big mess, especially a lump of suspicious matter, an undesirable mixture).
RR: That's a great play on words, and I'm getting the idea that Hungarian may not be as pun-friendly as American English is. I remember that back in the Sixties, I used to have poster on my bathroom wall that showed a penis with Richard Nixon's face on it with the caption of "America's Dick".

#6:
reg: BTW - update on Népszabadság: no change, the journalists are not allowed to their desks in the new building - all they could get is their personal belongings.
The cruel thing is that management already ordered pizza for all in the new place before the lockdown order came. FideSS pretends it is merely an economic affair - no explanation why they didn't let their own staff know that there were troubles ahead, or why they did not try to change the confrontational stance of the largest daily paper (and popular internet news source) gradually. The only viable explanation which most Western people (EU politicians again sent their dire warnings) as well as local opposition can supply is that it was a targeted killing - this paper should not exist any more, Mr. Orban decided late Friday night or early Saturday morning. Articles already written or in progress are not supposed to be published elsewhere because the journalists had contracts. Makes me think there could have been something incriminating in that material as there was every day for leading FideSS politicians last week. Sources of information (confidential by law) are also on the impounded computers. Another cumulative cause for the gov't to step in... The editor-in-chief and his deputy all thought it was over, though just in case, they show up every day and try to conduct talks with the new "owner" who is nominally an Austrian business holder. They even offered to buy their own paper for shares of one euro each - if the paper produces losses, that is not a bad deal actually... No reply. Yesterday "the guy" was sick. Today he just did not show up. Meanwhile subscribers called in to talk radio saying they got letters to renew subscription as late as Friday...
RR: Ironically, something similar has happened here in the USA over the last couple of decades without arousing any significant controversy. With the exception of the NY Times and a few others, all of the major newspapers with a nation-wide circulation are now owned by right-leaning plutocrats of one stripe or another. Of course, it doesn't really matter, since most people either get their news from the mainstream TV news outlets, which are also owned by plutocrats, but this has always been a controversial matter, and there are plenty of left-wing and centrist news sites on the Web.
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