Stories

7 Reasons I Am Leaving Hungary

In 1956, my father left Hungary after the Soviets had cracked down on the revolution. He wasn’t involved in the fighting; he chose to leave for a prospect of a better life under a non-Communist regime.

In 1976 my mother chose to leave Hungary after having met my father. They met during one of his visits to Hungary, and when they decided to live together, they chose to live in Norway. 

I grew up in Norway, but I wanted to study in Hungary. I loved Budapest for its architecture, its many art cinemas, the theaters, and my new friends.

After university, I found work at one of the many shared service centers (SSC) run by multinational companies. This was in 2008, and despite the economic crisis and an inept Socialist government, many had high hopes for better times ahead. Being no fan of Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz party, I naively believed that at least their economic policy would be better, if not perfect. I used to believe that I could have a future in Hungary, even if I never make as much money as I would in Norway. I was willing to make that trade-off for living in an exciting city in the middle of Europe. Being part of an emerging economy, many of us believed that in the long run wages and living standards would rise for most Hungarians.

Today, Budapest has become a depressing place to live, many of the art cinemas have closed. Some theaters have been taken over by directors loyal to Fidesz, usually as a result of a rigged hiring process, chasing away talented people. Old, beautiful buildings are still crumbling, and poverty is more visible than ever.

etel

Queue for a soup kitchen before Christmas, 2015 – Budapest

The state is more interested in enriching politicians and oligarchs close to Prime Minister Orbán, than making life easier for its citizens. While infrastructure used by ordinary citizens is literally rotting away, the government spends on lavish projects like stadiums and governmental buildings.

This is Orbán’s pet project, a narrow-gauge railroad in his hometown, Felcsút (left) – compared to a major railway station downtown Budapest (right):

A massive stadium and football academy next to Orbán’s birth house in Felcsút (left) and from drone (right) – built with public funds.

Orbán is also moving his office to Buda Castle at a massive cost. In order to have his own balcony, a UNESCO-protected site is being remodeled.

var

Orbán’s office being built in Buda castle

For ordinary people low wages, high taxes, and rampant corruption have become an obstacle to a decent life, and many of my friends and colleagues have chosen to emigrate.

There is no real opposition today, while Fidesz and the far-right Jobbik still enjoy strong support. The decline may not have begun with Viktor Orbán, and he cannot be blamed for all the problems in the post-communist era, but his government is responsible for the current decline – after having been in power for six years. 

For eight years my taxes have supported corrupt politicians and a state that increasingly fails to provide basic services.

Hungary is not a dictatorship anymore, but forty years after my mother left, I am leaving for similar reasons:

  • I want to live in country where I’m treated as a citizen – not as a subject.
  • Where people’s success depends on talent and hard work – not political connections.
  • Where state funds are used to secure efficient public services – not the wealth of the elite.
  • I want to live in a country were people, who work hard and follow the rules don’t have to struggle to make ends meet.
  • Where crime is prosecuted regardless of the political connections of the suspect.
  • Where policy is decided through open debate, and not by whatever the country’s leader happens to think on that given day.
  • Where Western values are the norm and Moscow is not a role model for government.

Here are my own personal reasons of leaving Hungary:

1. Low Wages – Long Working Hours

While Hungarians work more hours than most – at least on paper – they are paid less than most Europeans. Hungary ranks 7th in hours worked among OECD countries.

If you live in Budapest, you have to work longer for your Big Mac than most of your peers in the neighboring capitals – including Sofia, Prague, Warsaw, and Bratislava. Only the guy in Bucharest has to work longer (0.3 minutes) for his lunch at McDonald’s – if we believe the statistics. Small comfort.

For me, it meant that I couldn’t afford a decent lifestyle on an above average salary – by which I mean eating out once in a while, going on a holiday, or purchase books while also saving for a rainy day. For many Hungarian families going out for a movie and a snack is a rare treat even with full time jobs.

2. High taxes and a lousy welfare state

Hungarian taxation of wages is among the highest in the EU – Hungary is surpassed only by Belgium, Austria, and Germany. Needless to say, there is a difference between services provided by the German and the Hungarian state. In Hungary you have to bribe the doctor and hospital staff if you want a relatively decent health care service. Or you can opt for private health care, out of your own pocket.

In a country, where the net average wage is around 500 euros per month, this is not a realistic option for most people.

3. The M3 metro line in Budapest

This is how the metro line I used to take to work looks like:

m3

There is no air conditioning and 30 degrees Celsius is common inside the trains. Most of these wagons were built in the seventies, and some of them have actually caught fire during service.

 

4. National Tobacco Stores

tob

A National Tobacco Store. The graffiti reads: “Don’t take us for fools!” Photo: 444.hu

Budapest is littered with so called National Tobacco Stores – they are exclusively licensed to sell tobacco products. These are one of the many corruption scandals linked to the Orbán-government. A Fidesz mayor was caught on tape deliberating who is worthy of license in his town – based on loyalty to Fidesz. As a result, many shop owners have lost their businesses. The chief prosecutor – nominated by Fidesz – declined to investigate. If you purchase something in one of these shops you are supporting a business of cronies.

Personally, I am disgusted every time I see one of these shops – for me they are a symbol of government-sponsored robbery and corruption.

By the way – the Orbán-government loves to name all things Nemzeti (national) probably because it makes them look patriotic.

5. Political propaganda financed with public money

Big poster signs of immigrant-bashing and anti-Brussels messages financed with public funds can be seen everywhere.

dv

Ever since the migration crisis hit Hungary last summer, Orbán has competed with the far-right Jobbik party for the nationalist votes. This is also a useful tool for avoiding to talk about the dismal state Hungary is currently in (see previous comments).

The public broadcaster is churning out propaganda masqueraded as news. One case tells it all: Dániel Papp, a journalist working for the public broadcaster falsified a report with the intent to embarrass a foreign critic of Orbán. When he was exposed, instead of getting the sack, he was promoted. (But at least it’s now legal to call him a news falsifier (hírhamisító) because he lost a court case against it.

The state broadcaster’s new coverage of the recent teachers’ protest was biased, portraying the demonstrators as stooges for the opposition – which in Fidesz’s world view means ‘serving foreign interests’.

6. Crony capitalism

One of the major oligarchs is Lajos Simicska. He used to be friends with Viktor Orbán, their relationship goes back decades. Before falling out with Orbán, Simicska used to win major government contracts and tenders. The reason behind his success was that the government wanted to create Hungarian capitalists – Hungarians with capital. Now that Simicska and Orbán are not friends anymore, his companies are apparently not Hungarian enough for the state. There are new winners – from among Orbán’s friends and family.

A company owned by Orbán’s son-in-law, for instance, has won major contracts for street lights in cities run by Fidesz. As the Hungarian Spectrum writes:

work in Zalaegerszeg, which seems to have been less than satisfactory. In some parts of the city it is pitch dark, while in others pedestrians have difficulty navigating because the streetlights shine only on the road, leaving the sidewalks practically unlighted.”

This is a video from a mid-sized town after they equipped it with new street lights. It is a ride downtown, not in the outskirts. Pedestrians are not visible, zebra crossings caused accidents in the days after the new lights went up. Eventually, traffic cops had to be stationed at zebra crossings to escort pedestrians across the street.

The biggest problem with crony capitalism and corruption in Hungary is that the products are substandard and overpriced. Decent businesses lose while a few oligarchs are enriched and so called intellectuals funded by the taxpayers create an ideology, wanting us to believe that all this is for the good of the nation.

7. The so-called democratic opposition – the pillars of Orbán’s illiberal state

When Fidesz rewrote the election laws before the 2014 general election, it was clear that it favored the ruling party. And Fidesz did indeed win a 2/3 majority, while obtaining less the 50% of the popular vote. If I remember correctly, the opposition held a press conference, where the socialists’ and their allies’ key message was to join forces in order to beat Fidesz. While their rhetoric claimed that this was almost a dictatorship, they behaved like it was still a liberal democracy.

By opting to stay in the parliament and participate in elections under the rules written by Fidesz, they continue to legitimize Orbán’s state. With their cooperation it’s almost guaranteed that Fidesz will “win” the next general election and nothing will change in the near future.

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144 thoughts on “7 Reasons I Am Leaving Hungary

  1. As a “here-suffering” hungarian, I have to say, this is very perfect and good summary. Exactly these things – and I could continue this list even with a dozen things – are makes me to think about leaving, although I’m almost 50…

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you for your comment. We welcome personal stories about individual experiences and would be happy to share what you have to add to this list

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    • Having lived in the West for many years and having traveled to a number of countries, I absolutely agree with you on most of the issues, and in fact could add myself three more reasons for leaving Hungary.

      1. Attrocious and corrupt health-care system.
      Blood-boiling conditions and attitude in the health-care system!!! For starters, there isn’t enough government funding allocated to health-care. Then, corruption goes on shamelessly within the health-care system. And lastly, but not finally, Hungarian health-care has been overtaken by Neo Mengeles. The fact that you do not hear about medical mistreatments causing death or permanent disability so often, and there are only few publicized wrongful treatment lawsuits, is only because the media and the medical profession quasy systematically covers up most of such cases.

      2. Envious, hateful, prejudiced, rude, dishonest and corrupt people.
      I would estimate half of the population to be excessively envious and full of hatred, some 65% being corrupt, and some 35-40% of Hungarians being mentally ill or, at least, displaying symptoms of mental illness. Having observed my fellow Hungarians for the past 16 years (ever since I returned home from abroad), I observed that symptoms of mental illnesses are way more frequent than anywhere else I traveled to and lived at, and that Hungarians do harm to their fellow human beings just for the sake of doing harm (this is partially caused by massive mind control: bad people are consciously rewarded and promoted, and good people are disapproved of). Moreover, Hungarians are prejudiced against the poor/the rich, the short/the tall, the skinny/the chubby, the gypsy/foreign/local, the homeless and the sick … and so on so forth. The list is ENDLESS! Problem is, Hungarians ACT on their prejudices without regard for the law and the safety of others. Hate-crimes (beatings, harassments, thievery, vanadalism, discrimination, murder of the hated person’s animals and mistreatment of their children, and other similar crimes motivated purely by some prejudice) are encountered on DAILY BASIS. This is no exaggeration: hate-crimes in Hungary are regular things of everyday existence.

      3. Satanist ritual crucifiction/murder as society’s sacred foundation
      Little known by outsiders, Hungarians regularly participate in ritual murder/symbolic crucifiction. It works in the same way as the crucifiction of Jesus in the Bible: first, a person of influence, either satanist or someone who sees the victim as threat to power, gives the order that a particular person must be anihiliated, then, second, his name is black listed and s/he comes under illegal surveillance by police, snitches (for example an estimated 12% of Budapest’s population is involved in snitching) and ordinary citizens. Finally, the victim is being group tormented by pre-planned psychological torture tactics FOR YEARS, or until s/he is completely anihiliated psychologically and financially, murdered phyisically by covert methods or forced into suicide. Just as in the case of the crucifiction described in the Bible, people participating in such ritual murders perceive the victims as sacrificial lambs who liberated them from their sick murder and torture needs, and group cohesion is achieved by the really act of murder. Targets of this satanist behavior are usually, spiritually well-developed, intelligent, morally above-the-average, competent individuals who are generally seen by satanists and power-hungry maniacs as good targets. PEOPLE OF ALL AREAS OF LIFE PARTICIPATE IN THIS ACTIVITY! Your oh-so-nice neighbors, your friends, your co-workers, the religious and the atheist, and the rich and the homeless alike.

      So … I really do understand you and all those who run from this place as fast as they can for this place called “Hungary” is either the world’s largest lunatic asylum or hell itself.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hungary does have a lot of problems, but this post does too. This is a blatantly fake, politically motivated post and a very stupid one. Dishonesty is a problem in Hungarian politics but a dishonest post will not make things any better. This is yet another whining post that collects all the other whiners. If you left and have a great life, why are you whining all the time about the past? Can’t you move on? Get a life, people!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Just to tell you we care about our homeland, wherever we are in the world. Our ancestors and our parents are living there. If you forget your past you will have no future.

      Besides I care to much of unimportant things let’s have a coffee and cure cancer,and going back to Hungary a few times to make some nice lectures.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I agree with Eszpresszo, We all can write books on what we hate about Hungary or what’s wrong with Hungary but crying on your violins pointing blame everywhere but at yourselfs is pathetic. I travel around the world non stop only to realize Hungary is wonderful, if you got drive and motivation it can work for you, if you have no education and are a factory button pusher than i can see working bullshit jobs outside of hungary being your calling. Those that have drive, motivation can stand on their feet wonderfully in hungary. I would bet in 10 years 99% of you whiners wont have anything to show for, you will yet again blame something for your fuked up life, to write negative posts on your homeland … no job ? hahaha move forward, forget your negativity …. only losers will write up stuff on why they left their homeland…. fly back home and look around, lots of people kicking ass and BP is booming with good life if you put the time into it. Most the west will go into financial collapse, dollar, euro, gbp all in direstraits with the BRICS countries working hard to move forward…. what then? complain about how the west fell and then write another article on how you got hurt in some multicultural riot in the states and lost your job in the havoc of chaos ? hahahahaha move on …

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  3. I left Hungary in 2011 at the age of 23, mainly due to the hopelessness and people’s depressive and arrogant way of thinking and acting as a whole. I have never looked back since then – not to mention I found my way in life and am happier than ever since. On top of that, I am 100% determined I won’t return at any point in my life unless flying home as a tourist… All the best from the US.

    Liked by 2 people

    • you will realize it’s not a good place in the states either, wait until the dollar has serious problems and that the usa lives off loans vs living off industry. one day you will see the usa collapse and the lack of unity with its fake smiles and plastic food smack you hard in the face. New immigrants will have a hard life thinking a job that pays them more than it did in hungary is not what life’s all about. Those that can’t stand on their feet back home won’t get far anywhere, you need to push yourself.

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    • I left Hungary 30 years ago, the best decision I’ve ever made. I was 22 at the time and it was really challenging being exposed to the diversity of people, culture, languages etc. It’s been a great growing experience in every way. Unfortunately, I have to say that in comparison to Canada and many western countries, Hungarians can be the most narrow-minded, prejudiced and negative, complaining people. Their nationalism is overblown and they have a hard time to acknowledge anything that’s different and un-hungarian. Although I love many things Hungarian, I could never live within that homogenous environment with these off-putting attitudes.The country needs to shed its shallow worldview and evolve but people will fight to the end to protect their ignorance.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Interesting article, though I don’t think the socialists ate any better. I grew up in Hungary and the corruption is rampant, no matter if you look right or left. I moved to the USA for college, married an American and have no plans for going back. It took me a while to realize why I felt so much lighter here, like I can finally breathe. Here you don’t have to pay the doctor under the table (yes the health care system has its own problema but this is not one of them) and you can’t bribe your way out of a speeding ticket. I was never good at playing these games and here in the US you can have a good life without having to lie and cheat. My sister came here for college too, but she graduated this summer and went back home. I tried to convince her to stay. Now she’s looking for a job, I wonder if there are any?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Dear Blogger,
    Thank you for this post and for the people commenting, thank you for sharing your stories. I moved to Hungary 5 years ago, my parents having left to Germany in 68 and 71, me having grown up in Munich.
    I also thought, Budapest was an amazing City, and the Country was tough but worth it. And as so many others also commented, I am now thinking of leaving.
    If I would have to name just one reason for it:
    PASSIVITY.
    It is the mentality that has been described so often in the above comments: Feeling like you are an object being pushed around by circumstances, instead of a subject, who can form his/her own life and the world of the ones close to him/her by constructive work.
    That is probably what we all want.
    This is why I wanted to leave a comment, a POSITIVE one, for a change: I am still here. And there are many. They are maybe not reading this blog and the comments, because they are working in coffee shops, start-ups, in art or economy, still believing despite all that is said above, it should be possible to harvest all the beautiful things in Hungary without being dragged into depression. There are people like that. And I call upon al of us to do so: Work, Create, Write and Talk about what you do. This is the only possibility to changing anything: BECOMING ACTIVE – in a POSITIVE way.
    It will take a lot of time. But at least let us start.
    Peace.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. As a Hungarian I agree 100%. I left Hungary last year and I don’t even think about returning to my home country until major changes will take place both in politics, economy and society as well. Greetings from the Netherlands….

    Liked by 1 person

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  8. I left Hungary before the second Fidesz era and moved as far as technically possible on this planet. We had a decent, middle class life, and talked a lot with the family about the possible outcomes and our options. Leaving with a young child was not an easy decision. We’ve been so pessimistic (it was fairly clear Fidesz was going to win over the Socialists – and those leftist were not an option either) as we have seen how the first Fidesz government went. We thought some bad things are coming but we couldn’t see how desperate, ignorant and greedy the new establishment became. Hungary missed another great chance to get together by spending the EU money on basic things like Healthcare and Education. They built stadiums instead. Stadiums. In a country where you have to take your medicine and toilet paper with you if you go to the hospital for treatment or operation.

    Now the EU money is running out soon, I’m afraid the worst is yet to come.

    The author of this article is very emotional and I understand why.

    Liked by 1 person

    • If you have such a great life in NZ, why do you waste your time chatting on a Hungarian forum about a country you left forever? Why do you have the need to keep rehashing the past? What keeps you back from being able to move on with your life? You’re one bitter person, let it go, man. What author are you talking about? This is an obvious fake post.

      Liked by 1 person

    • ESZPRESSZO, your comment makes no sense. It doesn’t matter if he lives elsewhere. If he cares about Hungary, he will help discuss the problems in the country. It’s not about rehashing the past, but about dealing with the future.

      You keep spouting this nonsense in other comments. Are you politically motivated by any chance? 🙂

      Like

    • ESZPRESSZO, your comment makes no sense. It doesn’t matter if he lives elsewhere. If he cares about Hungary, he will help discuss the country’s problems. It’s not about rehashing the past, but about dealing with the future.

      I see you’re spouting similar nonsense in other comments. Are your comments politically motivated by any chance? 🙂

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    • Now you’re judging. Everybody has the right to express their opinion. You don’t have the right to question someone just because you don’t agree with their comments.

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  9. After over 4 decades of personal experience with Hungary I can sum it up: In a democracy (as Hungary still is one) the people always have the government they deserve!

    I can relate to the reasons given by the author for leaving this country and can only advice the young, well educated, foreign language speaking Hungarians to consider doing the same – if they want the chance for a better, more rewarding life for themselves and their children.

    Visiting back in Hungary every year, I am still always puzzled how the Hungarian society as a whole appears to either lack the common will or/and capability to substantially improve their own living conditions through the means of personal political involvement and ambition, creating real and substantial change for themselves through democratic elections – and this 26 years and counting after the “rendszerváltás” (political system change).

    Needless to paint the picture, of how Hungary and it’s society might look after yet another decade, during which the young and educated Hungarians have sought a brighter future for themselves elsewhere… but unfortunately that’s how it is in every failing society.

    (Now waiting for responses from brain washed, right-wing online commentators feeling hurt in their nationalistic pride… the ones that will definitely stay behind!)

    Liked by 2 people

  10. A lot of Hungarians think that moving abroad for good will make their lives better. In the reality the majority of recent immigrant Hungarians are unhappy with their new lives abroad.They have no social life, miss their family, work in crappy jobs (e.g. kitchen assistant, waiter, care assistant etc.) for low pays and unable to integrate. If you are not a doctor, a dentist or a nurse your life will be quite challenging. After a few years in a low paid, degrading job the “new life” won’t be appealing to many. Compared to eastern Europe the living standards are (still) better in the western part of Europe however deprivation and poverty isn’t unusual phenomena there and the poverty gap is growing.

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    • What you say is true, I started doing `low-end` jobs myself when arrived to the UK but slowly managed to climb up and now after 10 years I can say I am living an `English` life and managed to fully integrate. My experience is that Hungarians in general find it hard to integrate and are very complacent, doing the same thing year after year and then complain that they achieved nothing! So this is partly an attitude thing to be honest.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I agree with you when you say a lot of Hungarians are abroad in low profile jobs earning a basic salary in comparison with the local natives. But there are also many of us with industry specific qualifications that are valuable only outside Hungary. Hungary is a country of employees which are paid enough to make it to the end of the month and will never, ever get the opportunity to raise enough capital to start a decent business without paying outrageous taxes even if they haven’t made the first coin. People like us, (highly qualified) would have no other future in Hungary than working in one of the hundreds of helpdesks of multinational companies that fidesz has encouraged to come to Hungary given the laws they cooked to make sure employees are always at the losing end.So thanks, but no thanks! I stay in London *sips ale*

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    • “They have no social life, miss their family, work in crappy jobs”

      This statement is not more than condescending generalization, hence, empty words. And btw, crappy jobs are better than no jobs.

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    • are unskilled hungarians the majority of migrants though?
      i dont think they are.
      i get the feeling that most migrants from hungary are rather highly skilled, dedicated, hard working people.

      my subjective German perspective: i work with 5 hungarians doing office and administrative work. Their significant others all have work as well, some in rather important positions (ops manager, etc).
      They seem happy here and are integrating very well. Some speak german and all of them speak english.
      i know only one guy who only makes minimum wage, but he is very young (21), working in his first job and he is not sure what he wants to do with his life. typical problem i think.

      it seems that all the hungarians i have gotten to know came with a plan and a job offer in hands. yes, they do feel homesick sometimes but who doesnt. i think your painting too dark a picture.

      Liked by 1 person

    • cant edit but i really need to add this:

      there is this myth that migrants get paid less. this is absolute rubbish. a skilled worker earns the same as a german worker.
      if you are unskilled, you ll earn the same as any unskilled german worker, minimum wage, which is regulated.

      people often make the accusation of “wage prostitution”… this is utter rubbish. if the pay is low, at least it is equally low for every nationality, natives included.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. This is the legacy of the New Socialist Man. All former socialist countries are plagued with governance by cynical opportunists raised under socialism. little by little it will get better. Especially with connections to diaspora people living in civilized countries.

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  12. Actually, the street light project in Dunaújváros is not related to the prime minister’s son in law. It’s done by another corrupt Fidesz-related company. Also, while being an utter failure, the project has not claimed any lives. Accidents, yes. And that’s already bad enough. But laws dictate that you must choose your speed according to the lighing conditions, which means in bad condtions you must go slower. It would be pretty hard to blame fatal accidents on just the lighting.

    I agree that both Tiborcz’ cases and the lights in Dunaújváros are outrageously corrupt and miserable. But your chosen example does not support your point.

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  13. leaving hungary because the Metro doesnt look right?
    HAHAHAHAHA

    It’s being restored, new trains already arriving.
    Budapest has one of the best public transports on the world.

    You got to be kidding me.

    Even fuckin NORWAY has alcohol monopoly, even worse than national tobacco stores – not a monopoly.

    etc.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Metro 3: sorry but they won’t be new… wagons get some new engineering, painting and seats and they will come back from Russia. They are the original 70s metro. It was just a good business not to buy new ones but repair them. I agree: actual perspective of M3 makes us sad.
      But you are right: Bp has an excellent transportation even though of really old vehicles.

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    • Restoring the old metro trains isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The new engineering (inner workings) DOES make a huuuge difference and I’m pretty sure that the interior will also look MUCH better. Also, they did the same in Prague a couple years back.
      Now the question of delivery/fulfilling deadlines is an entirely different matter….

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    • You must be Hungarian judging by your reaction because you are badly hurt by what was said…
      but you just validated all that was said is true. I didn’t think it was that bad in Hungary . That is so sad…

      ok get that shiny Metro ..but what about the other issues below?

      ” Hungary is a country where citizens are treated as subjects.
      Where people’s success depends on talent and hard work – not political connections.
      Where state funds are used to secure efficient public services – not the wealth of the elite.
      I want to live in a country were people, who work hard and follow the rules don’t have to struggle to make ends meet.
      Where crime is prosecuted regardless of the political connections of the suspect.
      Where policy is decided through open debate, and not by whatever the country’s leader happens to think on that given day.
      Where Western values are the norm and Moscow is not a role model for government”

      ??

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Well, Well!!!! Interesting to read!!!! In South Africa it is actually worse and it all started the day Mandela left prison. They were schooled in Communist rule and believes in prison. Although communist rule failed there are still some politicians that believe in that unfortunately. We are a good example of that. Politicians spend billions on themselves!!!!! The president got himself a 246mil homestead, just bought 8.6 mil of vehicles for his wifes(5) who can hardly drive, spends 80 000 on a meal one evening dinner!!!! etc,etc. We have more than a 100 laws( the only country in the world) against Europeans for the job market. If that is not discrimination and oppression???
    Riots&strikes daily for shit. Schools & universities are vandalized and burned down. The basic pension is the worst in the world. They took a beautiful country,first world, and dumped it to 4th world. Our next rating will be junk status. We are number 1 for rape cases in the world, more than 4000 farmers murdered (Like Zimbabwe where there is no more food production) Violant house attacked on the elderly, +- 4 per day. General services are pathetic, huge drug abuse!!!! by Nigerians. It seems every criminal from Africa is now coming here. And there is so much more!!!!!

    Liked by 2 people

  15. thanks for your thoughts, norge-ungarsk guy. hungary isn1t perfect, we know, there is no country what1s perfect. we know, that wandering around the globe was always in our blood, and many our forfather and formother – much more than nowadays, if you1ll studied hungarian history – immigrated abroad in every century after the habsburgs liberated us from the ottoman empire. everyone has his/her/”eit” point of view. what i can say about, and not offendig you: as you can1t livin1 in hungary, likewise i wouldn1t prefer norway as my abroad home. why? for me, not money or career or art cinema or subway or stadiums are the life obstacles what are important in a country and i don1t care about socials system. what i think about life, is impact. i love the norwegian language(s), the norsk heritage, but when a oilbased country thinks, that prohibiting the sale of internal combustion engined cars but selling oil to others is the two sides of the same coin, then i feel hypocracy, and same goes when a norwegian thinks that orban&co1s bussines not the same what the state-owned norwegian oilcompany did after they discover a gigahuge brent-bed under the north sea. (look after the norwegian movie called pioneer, if you doesn1t know about this.) for me, is the same, sometimes shady methods to reach a state goal, but thats are the sides of the same coin. 🙂

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  16. For this kind of people who dedicate so mutch effort to drag down Hungary becouse of political interests and one sided opinions like this i would say : GOOD BY ! The world is big enough to find a better place ! I love my country and would newer leav it for a biger salary or a “better” political system! Or for a shiney looking public transport.
    Shalow attack on my country… payed by international drag down (leftist) propaganda !

    Like

  17. I left Hungary in 1991, I was the 3rd person to officially/legally emigrate from the XIth district. I left for many reasons, here are the two main reasons: 1) to have a better future not for myself, but for my future children (I was 19 at the time). I knew that it was unrealistic to gather a great fortune, but a comfortable one was realistic, and great opportunities would be possible for my children. 2) negative mentality/outlook on life.
    Do I miss Hungary, and my friends and family? Sure, of course.
    Have I ever regretted leaving? Not once?
    Is the wicked West, the land of milk and honey? Absolutely not!
    Is there no corruption and disheartening in politicians and politics in general? Of course there is! Do we lose faith? Yes! Solution? We go out and vote! That is the basis of democracy, and where I chose to live (Canada), it still works. No, this is not Western brainwashing, it is the truth. I lived through many nail-biting elections, but never lost faith in the system, even when it wasn’t the party I voted for that won.
    My two cents/filler on that topic.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Just a thought: have you ever worked for a corporation in Canada (preferably a US one)? I think not, otherwise you’d know that their upper management is just as riddled with despicable monsters as the Hugarian government is nowadays (well, some of the corporate upper managers are even worse than Orbán & Co.). And I REALLY doubt that ANY election will EVER change that (or the fact that they poison the political systems with their lobbying too).

      Like

  18. I enjoyed reading this well-written, honest appraisal. I lived in Budapest from 1990 – 1994. I returned in 2001 or so and have been there multiple times in the last few years. Almost every Hungarian I know under age 50 has emigrated – to Belgium, France, the US, the UK, Canada, Australia.. I read Hungarian Spectrum every day. Until about a year ago I used to be amazed every time the Orban gov’t came up with some new way to squeeze the electorate.. I kept thinking I was seeing the bottom or the end.. now, a year later, I have COMPLETELY lost hope for Hungary and the Hungarians who remain there. Only the Hungarians can save Hungary and I see NOTHING to indicate there are any capable Hungarians on the horizon ready to do the hard work of taking their country and their democracy back. I would leave there too if I were you.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. BKK is actually in pretty good shape despite the lack of funding, I don’t know where you saw that metro car I use the metro every day but I never seen anything like that.

    The main problem is the citizens are too narrow minded. We have the “news” sites like 444 index origo. But they are a joke, mostly the first. They have news every day which has about 10% reality and 90% fantasy to attract more reader. The most people just getting the information from there, and they are missing the other side of the story. Yes the education and the healthcare could get more money, but the problem is not just the lack of funding. The problem is the people who handle, and use the money. Let me tell you a story about my experience in the secondary education. Our school was in a bad shape, so the local government gave money to renovate the school. What happened was that they made a nice flower garden, and made the gym airconditioned. Just because the principal’s daughter had her wedding in that gym. When a teacher asked, why did we need a flower garden and useless airconditioning, instead of new windows or chalks or something useful, she was fired because “her political views are not aligned with ours”. Yeah probably Orban is the responsible for this…

    And who thinks the wages just can rise from one day to the other, you should probably read what happened in the US when they raised the minimum wage to 15$. Wages are rising, not that incredible speed but still faster than most of the other EU countries.

    So instead of blaming the government start to do something productive, instead of crying how shit everything is. Go to university, we have free education. Or just do your job, not just pretend you are working just not to get fired. Or even just stop stealing every shit what you can move.

    You can change the country if you want to. You just have to get up and do something.

    Liked by 1 person

    • This is a nice example,what the leader does that does the subordinates. So it was a system based problem in Hungary before, but Orbán made it worse with his stadions and narrow gauge.

      Like

  20. Sorry, these are not the arguments, why you left Hungary, these are points why you wont vote for Fidesz. You cant seriously expect from us to believe, that you are leaving a country (what you theoretically love), because the prime minister built a stadium in his backyard or you cant buy a tobacco in the supermarket…. Yes, these were corrupt measure, but it did not influenced your life…Probably you are leaving for the same reason as me, because you hate the always complaining mentality, the low salaries, the hostile environment, the egoistic people and the humiliation and exploitation by companies. And for these issues, you cant blame Orban, not even Gyurcsany.

    My second point is, is the Norwegian system that much better (besides of salaries)? Where a mass murderer got 21 years in 3 star hotel room called “prison”, where he complain lawfully about, that his coffee is too cold??!! I am just wondering, what is your opinion about the Barnevernet, which basically robs children from their immigrant parents in order to give them mid 40 Norwegian women, who cant have a baby in their own anymore , because they were to busy building their careers earlier…

    Liked by 1 person

    • you make good points about the hungarian mentality (always complaining) 😉

      i think it is fairly safe to say though that overall norway is much healthier and stable state than hungary. norway ranks a lot better than hungary in any quality of life index.

      the norwegian legal and prison system is a modern one which overall works extremely well in rehabilitating offenders.
      if you want to treat brevik worse, you ll have to treat every prisioner worse. and that would overall be unhealthy for society.

      the barnevernet case i have heard about is indeed terrible and sounds like a deeper investigation into the mindset of some of the care workers is required. unlike so many in scandals in hungary though, i am sure those investigations will happen and will come up with results.

      Like

    • I guess you are missing the point

      #1-6 show, what’s bad: low salary, high taxation, lousy public services, corruption, central propaganda and even more corruption.

      the main point is #7 and the last sentence in particular:

      “With their cooperation – opposition – it’s almost guaranteed that Fidesz will “win” the next general election and nothing will change in the near future.”

      PS: the blog entry is about why leaving Hungary and NOT why is Norway better

      Like

    • I agree that the first two point are relevant, but those were also true under the government of Gyurcsany and Bajnai. Corruption was always high in Hungary since the fall of communism, I remember the scandal cases of Mszp and Szdsz politicians between 2002-2010. During this time, it did not bothered him, that the wages are too low and the taxes are too high? Actually BKK improved enormously since 2010, before that under the leadership of Hagyo it was a mess… My question for him, does he sincerely believe if for example Együtt would win the election, the living standards and working conditions and opportunities would be significantly better in Hungary?

      I absolutely agree, that the living standards are higher in Norway, and people are happier there. I just wanted to point out, that the Norwegian government are far from ideal, and I dont see that they would have higher integrity than the hungarian one. At least, Fidesz dont rob children (yet) from their parents with fake reasons…

      Like

    • between 2010 and 2011, 30 children were taken from their families in the erpatak area. no matter their ethnicity or income and sometimes simply for disagreeing with the major.

      i guess stuff like that does happen in hungary.

      do i believe that the whole childcare or childprotection services are broken in hungary? no.

      Like

  21. Great article, thank you so much. Köszönöm, takk 🙂
    I’m writting an essay about Hungary’s blacksliding towards authoritarianism and appart from seeing EU officials freaking out every time Orban says a new crazy statement or changes for the xth time the constitution, I didn’t have the “chance” to see concrete examples and repercussions in people’s daily life. Your description of it is brilliant.
    I’m a student in Serbia and this type of ruling sounds very familiar though…
    Anyway. I wish you a good life abroad, even though it’s heart breaking. May the Hungarian experience spread also towards the West cause God knows how many illiberal states would raise if nationalistic parties won power. Democratically, paradoxally…
    In peace

    Liked by 1 person

  22. I’ve visited Budapest four years ago for some time and was suprised how shitty your public transport looks (like in Poland in the 90’s [I’m Polish BTW]). And the streets… They were f****n empty after 8 pm (not counting friday or saturday evenings, ofc) and the weather was just awesome – sunny, just right for chillin’ at evening. I’ve just moved to Warsaw and seen how lively my new city is (it litterally never sleeps), so my suprise was even bigger. I knew about Fidesz, cause we had similar assholes ruling Poland in 2005-2007 (and there was a lot of articles in Polish press about similarity between our assholes and your assholes). Now, these shitheads are back, ruling again, after BIG (like, they took ALL) win last year. They are making the same (is there a book titled “How to be an asshole politician in BIG WAY?” on the market or what) steps (public media are pure propaganda right now, supreme court is paralised, there’s a new so called “anti-terrorist” law on the way [just right to fight oposition in every way], they want to militirize far-right extremists with f****n guns, create their own army of loyalists etc.) as Orban to grab my country and squeeze like a juicy fruit. And to form a new citizen: a brutal, rasist, homophobic, ultrakatholic imbecyl, that ask no questions. Like Hungarians, Poles are frogs slowly boiling in warm water. And it’s going to be to late, when the water become f****n hot. And then, in year or two someone in my country will write very similar article.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Katalin, frankly speaking I don’t give a f**k ’bout form of my writing. Just close one eye (this ‘sensitive to curses’ one) and with the other one read carefully what I wrote about article’s author and my countries simply falling into the hands of bigots & neofascists. Hugs & Kisses to You!

      Liked by 2 people

    • Listen, maybe Hungary is not as good as Norway, but as Poland? Really? 😀 The Hungarian public transport system is really good, and metro 3 is the only line with old metros (and the new metros for the line are already done).
      “brutal, rasist, homophobic” That is bullshit (propaganda), just to know, of corse there are homophobic people etc. but they are everywhere in every country. And relying on my knowledge i’d rather be gay in Hungary than in Poland.

      Like

    • Well, what Poland got right is a careful sense of new found optimism and pride. Wava, an abomination of a city from the cold War is oozing with a self confidence and positivity that you can feel in the air when you are there, granted there is still the occasional relics from another time that you sometimes run into, but it is dissappearing fast, and with it comes the fruits that fall on the rest of Poland slowly but surely. In stark contrast to what I’ve felt when in beatiful Budapest and on the countryside there as well, where everyone is just passively waiting for the next scandal to outshine the last one.

      Liked by 1 person

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  24. Hi,
    You are right, and it is sad and both sickening to read all this. But there are some points which – I feel – must be noted:
    1. The migration of young workforce to the West is nothing new, nor is it solely provoked by the scandalous reign of the Fidesz. It is 100% natural, and comes from two main factors: the generation which had the opportunity to learn other foreign languages at school, apart from Russian is entering the labour market nowadays. On the other hand, even with the best use of EU-funds an other opportunities, we would still be behind the western part of the EU, which would be tangible and in itself a great motivation leave the country and try your luck. The difference is, that with the current social-political climate in Hungary, nobody is planning on coming back….
    2. The above image meant to picture the trains of M3 metro is misleading: it is in fact line M2, halfway through refurbishment. The station in the background is brand new! And since the picture was taken, new, air-conditioned trains have taken over M2. And the sorry state of the train is also more technical, than one would perceive it: these trains had gotten absolutely no anti-corrosion treatment, as in those days that was the norm, since the trains weren’t really meant to operate under open-air conditions. M3 is not in good shape, I must agree, but the refurbishment is also on its way, with essential trackwork done last year and the first new/modernised (this is also a corruption scandal) train is in the depot. and apart from this you have line M4, hundreds of brand new buses, new trams, trolleybuses, and whatnot.
    3. Tobacco shops seam like a real big deal, but as a non-smoker, I’m not offended too much. I have never bought anything in these, and will continue to abolish them. If Hungarians would be leading a healthier lifestyle, that would show on macroeconomic charts. 800 000 of the population is either an alcoholic or a problem drinker. In a total population of 9 800 000 that is a vast number. Put poverty next to it, and you’ll notice that there simply couldn’t be enough multinational companies to keep everything moving – they can’t get their workforce here….

    Like

  25. I posted this blog on my Facebook with the title:”Hm. Slow people are lagging behind 😦 “. I left Hungary with my five member family four years ago, based on the same reasons: corruption, nepotism, paternalism, nationalism. I could not see the opportunity for a good future for my children. No moral, no need to be an educated, diligent, talented, and contributing person in Hungary. You can have cocaine each day without a job and be the most rewarded advisor of the head of the mafia. You can be talented and diligent, and this results in the obligatory trash picking from ditches for $180 a month.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Pingback: Ezért hagyja el egy fiatal férfi Magyarországot | Online Újság

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  28. A small correction: one of your illustration shows not the “Keleti” station, but the “Nyugati” station. Keleti is worst – if it is possible at all 😦

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  29. A small correction: one of your illustration shows not the “Keleti” station, but the “Nyugati” station. keleti is worst – if it is possible at all 😦

    Like

  30. what hungary needs is a grass roots movement the likes of bernie sanders in the US. with a figurehead that is not corrupt, no non sense and honestly wants to get shit done. where to find him though  

    you literally notice the decay over the years. when i went to budapest for the first time in the 90s, all these old busses and all these old trams and trains were really quaint. the buildings had charme.

    when i came back in 2012 i noticed… holy crap. there are still the same busses on the road like in the 90s. the house have decayed even more.

    then to think of all the opportunities the country has had, so many companys went there, created jobs and built factories and nothing of it seems to trickle down into society.
    all the EU money that flows into the country. where the hell does it go? and how can you scream bloody murder and opression about the EU all day long when you are one of the big benefiters…

    all this is so irrational, it is unbelievable…
    my girlfriend is hungarian, i am german and for a long time we where thinking of moving to budapest. we have decided against it due to the obvious corruption and toxic social climate.
    it is small things like being expected to tip medical personell or school curriculums containing antisemitic authors… what the fuck guys… really?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you for your comment. We would be interested in your impressions as a non-Hungarian visiting the country – and we would be happy to share.

      Like

  31. Imagine a country where everyone must have a job. Unemployment is a felony: so called KMK “közveszélyes munkakerülés” in Hungary. Maybe “parasitism” is the correct word for that.

    This means everyone must have jobs, even if they don’t really have any meaningful work to do. They were paid for nothing. You cannot even fire them unless there is another company to employ them.

    And this went until 1989 when there were a “change of system” and the KMK were abolished. Now a lot of people who got money for doing nothing got fired and didn’t have any income, and they began to treat the western values, USA, capitalism, banks, entrepreneurs and everything associated them as an enemy, who took their “jobs” and well being.

    50% of people living in hungary aged above 40, they grew up in the Kádár era and ideology and many of them want these good old days back.

    These are the people the current regime thrives on.
    These are the people who applaud when the state manages strike on an “evil capitalist” and manages to get it pack and leave the country.
    These are the people who are too dumb to understand how basic economy works.
    These are the people who blame the state for low salaries and high prices. They still don’t understand the prices are set by the supply and demand…

    Until these people die of old age there won’t be any change.
    We have to wait another 30-40 years, and hope not everyone in their 20s vote with their feet!

    Liked by 1 person

    • ‘50% of people living in hungary aged above 40, they grew up in the Kádár era …. These are the people the current regime thrives on.’

      Ahhh, I don’t know about this – a LOT of young people support Fidesz and Jobbik.

      Like

  32. Good, so you are going back to Norway where “people” like Breivik can sue the state and win? Please go now!

    But before, please explain to the public what Vinmonopolet is. Just because you hate the tobacco shops so much.

    I guess you are not different from those single-minded liberals who were introduced in Hjernevask.

    Liked by 1 person

    • State licensing sucks, but were the alcohol store licenses in Norway handed out to friends and families of the governing party?

      Like

    • apparently Vinmonopolet is a government owned/operated company not a series of private businesses captured by the state and re-assigned to the friends of the system as a treat or buying loyalty.

      Like

    • It’s awesome that there is a country where Breivik can sue the state and win. It shows true equality among all people and a true belief in human rights. Such mentality is almost the opposite if the corruption described in this blog post.

      Also, having a government owned business to control the distribution on alcohol has no relation to the government handing over exclusive distribution rights to privately owned businesses.

      Like

    • “It’s awesome that there is a country where Breivik can sue the state and win.” Oh, is it? I know of at least one liberal democracy where criminals which did crimes as heinous as he did can also sue the state for ridiculous reasons like he did (cold coffee? his 3-room luxurious prison cell not good enough?!), but the case is dismissed shortly after that. In this country despicable animals like him are lucky if they “only” get sentenced to 120 years or so, because the usual procedure is to execute them. And yet nobody has any doubts the liberal values or democracy in this country either. Can you guess which country am I talking about?

      Like

    • CoolKoon, are you referring to United States? They have one of the worst legal systems in the world, with the second highest incarceration rate in the world.

      As I recall it, Breivik won in regards to his complaint about being in isolation 23 hours a day. Either way, the details of the lawsuit do not really matter. The point is, the law was followed, even for someone that everyone hates and no one is partial to, such as him. His rights were upheld.

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  33. Sadly, all true. Anyone who says otherwise is either blind or an idiot right-wing nationalist. I truely envy anyone who can just leave this shithole behind.

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  34. AUREL: You seem to be making a broad accusation and labeling the blog writer without responding to his several points that are all illustrated by examples from the past 6 years of Orban’s reign.

    Name One thing in this article that supports any claims you mention!

    1) Name one claim that is neoliberal in nature.
    2) Name one that is Kádárist in nature.
    3) Do spell out please WHAT you think in this article is maliciously and incorrectly criticize. Are you saying that state services provided are good enough quality? Are you saying that money on stadiums, moving the prime minister to the castle the Felcsút railway is money well spent? Are you saying that cronyism is OK, or even just that the level of cronyism is no worse than in western EU countries? Are you saying that what was written in the article about SImicska is either not true, or that it should be acceptable, and is typical of European countries?

    Like

  35. Having read this article I have the feeling that this was acutally written by a Hungarian opposing party but the facts listed are unfortunately true…
    If they did not steal that much I think we should be just fine but one has to stop this at a point somehow. The real problem is that nobody knows how?

    Like

  36. As someone who was born in Budapest and is now close to finalize a permanent move to Ireland, I wholeheartedly agree with this article.
    Fidesz has hijacked public life and economy, sending the country into a downward spiral not seen since the 1950’s.

    The saddest thing is that Budapest and Lake Balaton in particular are among the most beautiful and atmospheric places in Europe. And it’s all going to the dogs — no thanks to the worst government since the Rakosi era.

    Liked by 1 person

  37. All I can say is : JUST HATE IT, HATE, IT HATE IT SO MUCH. I can not wait to go back to Florida and live a normal life again after living in the worst, poorest and most corrupt country of Europe. Every word is true above in this article and just horrible even to understand the Hungarian news on TV which I do unfortunately!

    Liked by 1 person

  38. @Makk Marci: FWIW, Jobbik is pretty far from being able to form a government on their own, so casting opposition votes on Fidesz seems like a bad strategy if you don’t like what they do anymore.

    True that quite some people voted (and votes) Fidesz to express their hate against communists or communism. (I also have friends who have been thinking along this line until 2010 or 2014.) Too bad that it’s Fidesz now more communist than any party has been since 1989. The problem with those who still identify them with anti-communism (and mszp, dk or even pm, egyutt with communism) is that they try to use some simple very-very simple logic (e.g. mszp was formed mostly of mszmp, _the_ communist party, members 27 years ago) instead of looking at who’s doing what. Fidesz is doing a lot of things today that communist were hated for. At least, what they should have been hated for, if people understood what the problem was:
    – destabilizing the legal system
    – constraining democracy
    – taking over (robbing) businesses run by citizens (think ‘allamositas’ from the fifties)
    – creating an elite that is outside and above the law
    – rigging the elections (I have no doubts that they will continue rigging as/if/when needed)
    – controlling media (of course, Kadar had a much easier job, for we didn’t have internet back then in Hungary, nor commercial media)
    – (super) massive corruption

    Unfortunately the society is simply too dumb to elect a government that does good for them. They still fall for the same old (100 year old!) convenient narrative, that some evil external force keeps us down. In the beginning of the XX century it was the jews, then after WW II. it was the ‘imperialists’ (capitalists, really) and even though towards the end probably nobody really believed it, here we are again. Now it’s Brussels and the ‘foreign money men’ (as the official propaganda calls the invisible daemon). Not a chance that it’s us.

    Orban’s only feat is realizing that it’s still a stupid little communist country. It’s still Kadar’s country, so he just needs to say the same things that has been said for most of the XX. century. Blame some invisible force, blame some foreign force, tell people that we are somehow still unique/special/better than the others and try to manage the most evident/visible problems. And evident and visible is whatever people care most about, whatever they are most afraid of. And it’s the short term things. So say stupid things about decreasing the ‘utility costs’ (‘rezsi’) and worse even do it and also frighten people with immigrants and terrorism.

    It’s a lot more effective than saying that you cut the utilities by 5-10% (fuck the moneymen trying to make profits) than saying you will earn 15% more in 5 years. Because we, as a society, are stupid.

    Like

  39. @Aurel: what a crapload of utter BS. Why don’t you try to refute with arguments instead of piling adjectives like ‘toxic’. The fact that you say you left Hungary for different reason than the author of the post doesn’t mean anything. However, it’s funny that you think that the govt. is doing OK and you still felt that you need to leave because of the opposition. Because of opposition that has 33% in the parliament, that is fragmented (see the post that you are commenting on) and that won’t be able to form a government for at least 6 years from now. (8 years, 2 cycles from when you have left.)

    Now this sounds really stupid and thus is pretty hard to believe. A much plausible explanation is that you just left the country because you thought you can have a better life abroad. Which is completely OK. Until you start lying about it for yourself and for others and start making up stories that help you beleive in Hungary being on the right path.

    Like

  40. I would like to explain to foreigners why are they “Enjoy support”. First time I voted Fidesz, I wanted the old, ex-communist party go. We hate communists, because many of our ancestors were burglarized and executed by them. Fidesz won -> We were happy. At the beginning many of Us thought that they gonna do at least something better.(How innocent We were…)
    Last time I voted them to prevent Jobbik win aganist them. I seen many stupid people supporting Jobbik, so there is no sence to vote on a green party or liberals, because only Fidesz or Jobbik can win. Fidesz will continue corruption, Jobbik would start a fucking war.
    Basicaly, there is no party represents Us. Noone represents what I and most of my friends want. (during last election, only 61% of the people went and vote, I’m sure this time it will be even less).

    Liked by 1 person

  41. I would like to explain to foreigners why are they “Enjoy support”. First time I voted Fidesz, I wanted the old, ex-communist party go. We hate communists, because many of our ancestors were burglarized and executed by them. Fidesz won -> We were happy. At the beginning many of Us thought that they gonna do at least something better.(How innocent We were…)
    Last time I voted them to prevent Jobbik win aganist them. I seen many stupid people supporting Jobbik, so there is no sence to vote on a green party or liberals, because only Fidesz or Jobbik can win. Fidesz will continue corruption, Jobbik would start a fucking war.
    Basicaly, there is no party represents Us. Noone represents what I and most of my friends want. (during last election, only61% of the people went and vote, I’m sure this time it will be even less).

    Liked by 1 person

  42. Dramatic situation… Sorry to hear that.
    But there’s one thing which doesn’t let me sleep. Aren’t there any people who see the problem besides you? I wonder what kind of electorate Orban has. Do you have any demographic data about that? Are there only elderly people or maybe young are also under control of propaganda?
    I write from Poland and our situation may soon become shitty as well after recent elections, but there are a lot of movements here (run mostly by students and young people) to show that we are not happy about that.
    Fingers crossed for better future. Fight about it! Even by running such a blog to keep the rest of the world updated.

    Liked by 1 person

    • There’s no resistance here in Hungary. People are so afraid to speak up for themselves as almost everybody is afraid of losing their jobs. A lot of us see the problems but everybody is quiet. There are numerous blog posts about the scandals and corruption but nothing happens apart from a few comments. But unfortunately a lot of the voters still think that things are going into the right direction. They believe the propaganda, that the Hungarian economy performs better. They cannot realise the extent of the corruption. The central bank threw $1bn out of the window? Then what? When the socialist government tried to introduce some fee of 300 HUF back in 2008 to tackle the misuse of the public healthcare system everybody was outrageous. But then in 2011 the Fidesz government ripped off 10 bn € worth of private pension funds without the parliament getting burned down to the ground.

      Liked by 1 person

  43. Last year I left the country with my family too. My main reason was the education system and fear for my children’s future. The education system got heavily centralised, critically underfunded and disgustingly overwhelmed by Fidesz’s ideology.

    Liked by 3 people

    • If you’d like to share your story, we would be happy to share. Especially your experiences with the education system.

      Like

  44. I’ve read your post and subsequently ran through your earlier blogpost either. I’m not sure if you are a paid propagandist or just heavily influenced by your environment, but the point of view you represent is just simply toxic, your entire blog feels like reading an extract of the crazy neoliberal bullshit presented on index.hu, 444 or whatever. I’m living outside of Hungary for 2 years now. I left the country not because of the reasons you mentioned above, but because of the people. There are loads of layers of crap in Hungary: there are some useless folks, who feel nostalgic about the Kádár-era, and basically want the socialism back, and want to live for free; there are the minorities who show criminalist attitude (I’m sure you know who I’m talking about); and there are (of course) your kind. Those who without any understanding of how politics, economy and the country in general works, spreading their toxic “opinion”, poisoning the younger generation. To be honest you guys disgust me the most. With some useless arts/sociology/whatever degree, and with a few joints per week you consider yourself to be some kind of super-intellectual person who knows the general truth of the life, the universe and everything. In reality you are nothing but some hipsters, with a childish idealism, brainwashed by the neoliberal media. So I’m glad you are gone. Please, do take your friends with you. Once I might return to my home then.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Let me spell it out for you: gypsies, gypsies, gypsies…

      Because the siege mentality of anti-PC warriors is not warranted in Hungary – and you know that. No harm will come to you for blaming gypsies at the top of your lungs. Quite the contrary…

      Speaking of which – are you serious? Do you seriously think gypsies corrupted this country?

      I can see you bravely point out when someone steals a chicken. And yes, it is a crime. But:

      – Are you brave enough to call a thief – even when they steal 1 billion dollars? Even when they are the central bank? Even when they are actually powerful?

      Not so comfortable, is it?

      If there is something toxic here, it is the cowardice of authoritarian followers, who only dare to blame those, who are even weaker than themselves. Taking the side of a government against your fellow countrymen is not the most respectable thing that comes to mind.

      By the way, you have replies above

      Like

    • Omg man 😀 who the hell is talking about gypsies :D? The’re just a small portion of the problem and that’d be instantly resolved if this PC crap’d be gone. You live in Hungary for 10 years now do you? Then you must be speaking the language, take your time, read this: http://prolivilag.blogspot.com. This summarizes the problem of the society quite accurately.

      You blame the government with no real point. Those things you speak out are mostly anecdotes spread by people like you @ index, 444 etc to generate even more hatred against Fidesz. You know what? Every single time I travel to Budapest, I see some (minor) improvements. More people eating in restaurants, better infrastructure, renovated buildings etc. Also the rent market is quite alright compared to many other places.

      I’ve traveled quite a lot last year and seen many things, I can tell you that Hungary is quite a decent place — with some major problems though. Apart from the wracked society, problems include low salaries and terrible work morale. The latter is a consequence of the Kádár-era (described in the formerly mentioned article), the former is the interest of the EU. Also, the country is heavily dependent on foreign assets. That’s a thing that the current government is trying to change, and that’s why hipsters are hired to spread the “Western Wisdom ™” online, aggressively turning people against them.

      I’ve also seen you complaining about high tax rates in Hungary. What?? Man, here, where I live, I’m taxed 52% due to progressive rates (to feed and house the alcoholic locals who have 3+ children). FYI I was getting the ~70% of my gross back in Hungary. Oh wait and I have to pay ~2000+ EUR rent for a 2 bed flat, while the “poor” get that for free (yes). It’s a quite common pattern in Western Europe. Where do you think this leads? People who produce the GDP are horribly taxed, and the money is given to technically useless ones? These are the “Western Values ™” man, I’m really happy Hungary refuses this madness.

      The government is doing an OK job, even though (sadly) they still have the shadow of the communism on them. But anyways I’m happy they are trying to move away from the crazy Western European politics, because that’s a total disaster. You seem to be so surprised politicians are having an at least shady business? Omg, just look at foreign politics, how rich Tony Blair got after being prime minister, or the Kennedy family in the US, and where did they come from. Also you seem to be forgetting that what the “socialist” party have done in the last decade, doubled the debt and sold out the whole country basically. Also shot out people’s eyes on the street when demonstrating against them. That time I haven’t seen any of you bitching around, I’m curious why? But building sport stadiums, that’s the true crime, we might have a new Hitler here :OO -_-. Man, honestly, you totally lack the big picture.

      So most of you live in an opinion-bubble, surrounded by people sharing your own views. Even the ones who read this shitty blog, will tell you the very things you like to hear in comments. I suggest you talking to other folks also, who think a bit otherwise (they are not all assholes, I promise, even if they don’t hold a liberal arts degree ;).

      Cheers

      Like

    • Yeah, you’re totally right about this thing, of course the brainwashed western-european people can’t understand shit, they don’t see the bigger picture, only the things they hear from madame Merkel… BUT corruption unfortunately still exists

      Like

    • I am happy for you, but why don’t you move to Hungary then? If it is better here, you should live here. It is simple as that.

      I live here and although I love Budapest and Hungary, I can clearly see that we are heading nowhere. There are a lot more homeless people in Budapest than 10 years ago, and after Vitézy left, BKK is doing a shitty job and the public spaces/transportation developments stopped. Good “old” times: FUTÁR, Széll Kálmán tér, tram line 1, new buses, good communication – but since then, we only got the corrupt and shameful M3 modernization (with the old-new metros, problems with the replacement buses and the deadline is getting further away every day).

      Also, the government is clearly not pumping money into education and health care. Unfortunately half of my family is working as a teacher and the other half is working as a doctor. Well not anymore, because my little brother (anesthesiologist) left the country a few month ago, and my father is quitting his job as a clinical research assistant. Fortunately he is close to retirement so it’s not a big problem, but he always tells me stories about how this government is doing even (!) less for our health care. And he knows a thing or two about the system, since his job was to visit hospitals in all over the country.

      I live a good life with no financial problems, but I feel bad about the situation. I love politics, but nowadays I feel a lot worse than 6 years ago. At that time I thought Fidesz is going to be better. And they are just the same, or even worse because without real opposition, they can steal openly. We can hear about new corruption cases every freaking day. And I am not okay with a corrupt government. I am not okay with making billionaires (Mészáros Lőrinc, Orbán family, Tiborcz István, Habony Árpád etc.) using my beloved countries money.

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    • After reading your comment, I just have one question. Are you a f***** idiot? So you are fine with corruption, the increased criminal cases, destroying the education, health care, etc, but not fine with people who actually see what the problem is in the country? Congratulations! But then I have an idea for you! Wait a little, until most of the normal and good people leave Hungary and you can move back to other idiots like you. You will live happy together.

      Like

    • Lot of you are having serious problems with reading comprehension. You visualize Hungary as a horrible place, that’s full of criminals, every 2nd family is homeless and the education is a nonsense. Of course this is solely the responsibility of the current government. This is an idiotic, super narrow-minded attitude, you guys are totally sick and project all your frustration to the actual government and blame them for everything.

      What I say is that, the current state of Hungary is a consequence of many complex things, and the current government isn’t doing any worse job than the previous ones, just simply your beloved neoliberal media is trying to make them look like (and you happily believe their crap). Hungary is just a few years back from a financial crisis, is under development and doing OK. The GDP is better then expected, employment rate is slowly, but growing (and as always there is corruption, so much surprisingly).

      The myths about the wrecked education are also ridiculous. Can you please explain me that why the ratio of Hungarian students is exceptionally high in universities like Oxford or Cambridge compared to the country population? Or why are there so many Hungarian millennials employed by companies like Google, Facebook, or Amazon? Sure, we do have problems with our education, mainly for historical reasons. Most teachers are old, carrying the last century with them, or younger, but useless — honestly, are there any talented professionals, who’d work for that ridiculous amount of money? Or would you pay for the education yourself, to give them more, and get better quality? Of course not, because your kids are deserved to be educated for free 😉 -> here’s the problem.

      People want everything for free, free education, free higher education, free healthcare, free transportation, free housing, and free money (just like back in the communism). And they are surprised when free stuff turns out to be shit. By the way nothing is for free, why do you think entrepreneurs are horribly taxed (of course worshiped western multinationals are excluded :), or where do you think the 27% VAT goes)? If somebody is trying to change this madness, the very moment huge demonstration and bitching start out. You remember the (failed) reform of higher education back in 2013? When the government was trying to kindly ask the students to learn useful professions like engineering and economy that pays well these days? Of course they faced total refusal and whining.

      Hungarians are waiting for the Messiah to magically solve all the problems. If it doesn’t happen, people look for a Satan that can be blamed for all their problems. Currently this Satan is Viktor Orbán. Of course the neoliberal media, who are funded from the west and their interests bind them to the political opposition, are happily feeding the fire, and again, you gratefully believe them.

      So what comes after Orbán? A new Satan. I’ll tell you a secret: politicians are people like you. Shitty people will get shitty politicians. In the and of the day it turns out that people themselves build the country, and not the politicians. So what about starting to make money, learning useful professions, paying for things you want, and working hard? Instead of bitching around and waiting for the government to solve your financial or whatever problems?

      Where do you think a country is going, where hardly 3 million people are paying taxes from the population of 10 million, and the other 7 million are waiting for free stuff 0-24?

      Like

    • Dear Aurel,

      Let’s go point by point. Second education: The current education reforms will not see the results until the next ten years. So what you are saying are before the education system without ethics as a class, but with language education. FIDESZ decreased the language education and not increase informatics and natural history as subjects. I think it is a not a prospective choice for the Hungarian economy.

      Higher education: Exactly the current system is for free and it worth to investigating by the government, I think. The education contract is a fine possibility for the government to keep the Hungarian people in Hungary. We are whining quite often, because of that. The problem is still that it not worth to stay inHungary, when you get 8-10 time more money for the same work, even if your rent is also 5-10 time more. The government decreased the free places in Arts, in Economy and in Law. I think these sciences are important also, especially economics and Law in our current cases. Arts, as faculty, gives us the language teachers and historians and lot of people in the markating industry have a diploma in arts.

      Orban rules with corruption just like a lot of their ancestors. The problem is the amount of corruption and needless investments, just like stadiums. It increased in the last few years. Also, the government became more central. Orban drives the country by hand and if you are saying something against the government you will become “Hazaáruló” treasonous against the nation. It means ad-hoc decisions. Hungary became unpredictable. Today decisions overwrite yesterday decisions.Like the KLIKK in the education or closing the shops on Sunday or the taxation aginst the internet. AD-hoc decisions.

      Her in the UK, at least you can see that somethings will be ten twenty, fifty or a hundred years from now. The latter one is quite rare, but your house will be there and you could get work in worst case scenario in the low paid jobs, which is still enough to pay the mortgage and get food. Here you have at least free health care, and partly free education, and much less tax. But this is not so important than the predictability of your life. Orban made Hungary his kingdom. He can do whatever he wants.

      Sincierly yours,

      Medozz

      Like

  45. So sad…especially for a country which is so beautiful as Hungary. I wonder how it must be for people who have to stay in Hungary and have no other choice. At least you are among the lucky ones who can relocate easily..

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Niki,
      I think hopelessness quite sums up their situation. There’s simply no future here, especially in the eastern parts of the country. Jobs are scarce, the working conditions are terrible and the wages are ridiculously low. Plus you really don’t get anything for the hefty taxes you paid. It’s a miracle that hospitals are still functioning somehow.
      The only thing that’s giving me hope and I bear my awful job with a crappy salary here, that by the end of October, I can save up enough for start a new life abroad. It takes a long time to save a few thousand euros with a salary less than 500 € per month.

      Like

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