Friday, January 27, 2012

Orban does the totally expected thing

It may have been noted by readers of this blog that just as the media has decided that Hungary is still a far off country of which we know next to nothing but it also seems to be having events that might affect the rest of us, interest in those events dried up here. Well, not quite. A long posting on the subject is in the works.

In the meantime, it is sufficient to say that the Prime Minister, Viktor Orban, seems to be bowing to the inevitable.
The Hungarian government is expected to propose changes to its central banking legislation in the coming weeks, in order to secure a credit line from the EU and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
The changes will be a response to the European Commission's legal challenge to Hungary's new legislation. The Commission claims that the law restricts the independence of the central bank, and must be revised before Hungary is allowed to start negotiations on a credit facility.
Of course, he may yet go back on that as well and the whole charade might start for the third (or is it the fourth time).

It is not unreasonable to call this a response to unconscionable bullying on the part of the EU on whom no less a person than Frank Furedi called to stop but there is also the fact that Hungary needs that credit line and it is, therefore, not unreasonable to expect her government to behave in a slightly less petulant and childish manner.

The real problem stems, I suspect, from those promises that were made to all former Communist countries when they were part bullied, part bribed into joining the European Union. Money was going to pour there and every problem would be sorted out. Sadly, yet again, those of us who warned that it will all end in tears, seem to have turned out to be right. Just call me Cassandra.


  1. I wonder, Cassandra, whether Orban would have bowed to pressure from the EU at some point even had Hungary not needed money. The instinctive answer is "well of course not", but the colleagues seem to have ways and means. It might just have taken longer and needed more effort. But of course, as we all know, keeping a supplicant in a position of weakness makes them far more agreeable to do your bidding - the convenient crisis is, er, very convenient right now.

  2. Sadly, I cannot take Orban's part on this one. He has behaved stupidly and greedily. Well, don't they all but Orban and his party are not ones to support, as I have written before. His idea of what is good for Hungary is in the realm of very dangerous fantasy.