Bald henchmen stopped the submission of an anti-government referendum question on 23 February in Budapest. There are three possible explanations:
1. The Election Committee is running out of excuses
It must be an exhausting job to keep coming up with imaginative excuses as to why controversial (and often much-hated) government measures should not be put to referendum. The question about the 2024 Olympics, for instance, was dismissed with the excuse that people must not get the impression that they can break such projects. (Or the same thing spread over several pages.) As I said, hard work. And the only way to take a vacation from it is to have a government-friendly question to contemplate for the next couple of weeks.
In other words, employee welfare.
2. An overzealous Fidesz-supporter going above and beyond…
…to show his loyalty to the boss of all the bosses – hiring the regulars of Kápolna-fitness, and various football-themed combats to make sure that the self-motivated old lady with the government-friendly question gets there first. Spontaneously.
After all, going above and beyond in loyalty, shedding self-restraint and dignity is the logical result of a system of feudal loyalties and favours based on services to the ruler.
UPDATE – Leading Fidesz politicians sincerely hope this was the case. They are also worried that this might have come from above.
3. “I am the law, stop fighting me with the law!”
If, however, the initiative came from the highest levels, it can only mean one thing. Losing patience with the subversive and treasonous elements, who are still trying to fight the will of the Master of the Law with the tool of the law. Orbán and his strongmen have expressed it on a number of occasions that resistance to political will citing the law is futile – because they write the law. He is especially proud of his ability to dish out new rules overnight. (Or used to be before he lost his parliamentary supermajority.) His right-hand man has at least once told in front of cameras that international corporations should stop fighting political will with legal means in Brussels – because all they can achieve is that the rules will be rewritten.
This might just be a way to finally let it sink in that there can be no such thing as using your meager rights to achieve anything.
It will also serve to entrench the feeling of helplessness. That no matter what one tries, it won’t change the course of politics. Political will will prevail.
Anyway, as a reaction, PM Orbán broke two subjects the next day:
- He will propose a referendum of his own about rejecting refugee quotas (never mind that referendums cannot decide that), and
- That his dog was beaten up. Six years ago. A purebred Hungarian Kuvasz, no less. He also quickly released a photo of himself with a dog. Looked great in the tabloids. It needs our attention NOW.
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Featured image: Mandiner.hu