He really said that

“Checks and balances are stupid, forget it” – says speaker of parliament

László Kövér, the speaker of the Hungarian parliament and the moral spirit animal of Fidesz has attacked the very essence of democracy after Fidesz’ election defeat in major cities a week earlier.

“The system of checks and balances, I don’t know what you’ve learned, is stupid, forget it. It has nothing to do with the rule of law, nor with democracy.”

— László Kövér
Vice president of Fidesz and Speaker of the Parliament, 23 October 2019

He said this before the students of Fidesz’ shiny, new, lavishly financed apparatchik university, the National University of Public Service, to make it even more sickening.

“The problem is that some seriously believe that the government created by the democratic expression of the people’s will must be slowed down. They think that democracy is when they put a spoke in the wheels.”

And Fidesz thinks democracy is blunt, primitive majoritarianism. But in truth, there is no need for any institutions if all we want is that the majority to charge ahead like an unstoppable steamroller and stomp on the minority with brute force. All it takes is putting might over right, a gorilla can do that.

He is really growing impatient with even the weakest, least consequential forms of opposition, with the very existence of it – even though it is really difficult to think of an instance when the Fidesz steamroller was forced to slow down, even if momentarily. In fact, there were only five such instances in nine years and they weren’t exactly powerful nor consequential.

Some people tend to develop disdain for the world as they age, but his disdain has only worsened. He has always been regarded as the moral “backbone” of Fidesz – now you see what it is like. Legend has it, he is the Fidesznik Who Doesn’t Steal. It pains him to see the systemic corruption of his old comrades with pain – but has to swallow his thoughts, most of the time because The Cause is more important.

And The Cause is the unstoppable steamroller that puts in place a pure and virtuous Hungary, clean from ethnic or gender degeneration, where everyone does what Kövér wants, breeds, toils, pays taxes, never looking up. He wants to homogenize society with the fervor of a true authoritarian, and he never entertains even the slightest possibility that view points other than his own might exist, or that he might ever be wrong.

And his moral high ground is that – according to legend – he doesn’t take anything for himself when others in his gang are stealing. When the sex/drug tape of a corrupt local loyalist mayor emerged alongside details of his corruption, rumor has it, this guy ordered him to resign. Resign, like in a democracy. Resign, like there are still consequences for actions. Resign, like loyalty is less important than the law.

According to these rumors it was Orbán who stopped the resignation from happening (resulting in farcical communication chaos when the government’s mouthpiece paper had to retract the anonymous editorial demanding the resignation like they used to do these things in communist times).

Orbán had just recently emphasized what exactly he means by demanding loyalty- some say he was referring to the scandal he already knew was about the break). Loyalty to the gang is more important than the law, more important than decency, more important than not being wrong or evil. Loyalty means not just that minions have to take the side of Orbán, even when he is illegal, immoral, or downright wrong – but also the other way around.

This is why no one ever resigns in this country for wrongdoing. Not even if it’s on tape. Not even if they admit it themselves. Fidesz closes ranks behind them and they are more secure in their position than ever. (Actually, if you are a loyalist in trouble, you just have to cause a scandal, beat your wife in public, leak a video where you shut a gypsy in the oven and throw a match after him, or steal on record. And The Party will not let you go.)

Protecting the guilty keeps the clan tight and loyal – so it creates more and more guilty ones. It also teaches the rest of us that resistance is futile – so we stop believing that anything can change. After nine years of this, no one even dares to get outraged at scandals or even blatant corruption if it comes from Fidesz. It hurts too much when – once again – nothing happens.

“In today’s world a conspiracy is taking place to dissolve state sovereignties.”

Conspiracy, indeed. The age-old thinking fallacy creeping its way into an ageing mind. But when it comes to conspiracies, I prefer to apply two rules: 1) If they say it out loud, if it’s in the public founding document, it is not a conspiracy. And 2) if any groups of individuals would manage to pull off all the things conspiracies are credited with, if they could cooperate with such a degree of effectiveness, without any unforeseen circumstances or unintended consequences – I would seriously consider that they might be some kind of superior species. If anyone ever tried to pull off coordinated action among multiple humans, they will know that such a thing does not exist. So spare me the tired, anti-semitic octopus-imagery, folks.

“The world is getting infantilized. And it is not an accident either. mass communication is infantilizing people on purpose. Just look at the commercials! They are made for idiots. … The world is being stupefied, so be suspicious! Above forty, paranoia is a survival instinct…” 

In a way, I am not surprised. Ageing people tend to slide down the authoritarian scale towards the lower end if they don’t have actual principles to begin with, just a vague desire to power – and Fidesz is ageing. The once young boys who adopted democracy when it was in the vogue and financially encouraged (when they graduated in the late 1980s) are now intolerant authoritarians, fed up with dissent and plurality of opinions in society. They really just want the differently-thinking elements to stop existing. (So I guess they are not anti-pluralist, but a-pluralist – to put it in the way antisemites prefer to whitewash their desire to eliminate certain groups of fellow people.)

Kövér even used his power as speaker of the house to ban journalist from doing any kind of journalism in the parliament building. His latest is limiting them into a 3×3 cordoned-off square in the middle of a lounge, and if an MP doesn’t want to talk to them, they must stop asking questions immediately. 

And when Fidesz didn’t win the local elections in a landslide (as Fidesz is supposed to in Kövér’s idea of a democracy) he called the elections not clean.

And if you wonder which alternative opinion he would prefer not to live on the same planet with – he says he can’t stand liberal adults and that he would prefer the liberalism of a century ago. Which makes me wonder if migration should be across ages – as opposed to geographic – because then we could finally make sure that everyone goes where he dreams to be, rather than desperately, forcefully wish others would just stop existing.

He also calls computers weapons of mass destruction in this speech, hates everything that is private or individual (as opposed to state collectivist), and grieves the loss of family and ethnic collectivism (an imaginary past when family members loved and helped each other – for genetic reasons, I suppose, because family love is far from self-evident in reality.)

The curious thing is that despite Orbán having adopted “nation”, an ethnic term in Hungarian, to describe The Collective we all must defer to – Kövér keeps using “state” multiple times. This may either be an old habit from the era of communist party-state, where everything was “state”, from the opera house to the ministries – but it is definitely not an accident. The alma mater of both Orbán and Kövér puts a huge emphasis on the distinction, so he definitely knows and diverges anyway. Let’s hope Orbán has more patience for intra-party dissent than this guy has for the rest of us.

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