For the last few years, in the late summer Gates of Vienna readers could expect to see a subtitled video of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s annual “state of the nation” speech. Mr. Orbán customarily makes his remarks each year at the Bálványos Summer Open University and Student Camp in Tusnádfürdő (Băile Tuşnad), in the ethnic Hungarian region of western Romania. However, this year COVID-19 reared its ugly head, forcing the prime minister to write an essay instead.
Many thanks to CrossWare for translating this piece from Magyar Nemzet.
Together we will succeed again!
by Viktor Orbán
There is no Tusnádfürdo [site of the annual workshop of the Bálványos Free Summer University]. There is no Kötcse [site of annual Civic Picnic]. There is no transit (traffic). There is an epidemic. The virus has also decimated summer meetings of workshops on political thinking. And there would be something to think about and discuss. Something and in some manner which would be impossible in the parliamentarian jostle and inside the frames of modern communication. So what remains is writing instead of speaking, an essay instead of a lecture.
Illiberal, conservative, Christian Democrat, liberal. Our struggle for intellectual sovereignty and intellectual freedom, which was launched years ago in Tusnád(fürdo), is slowly coming to fruition. Political correctness, that is, the rebellion against the classical liberal doctrines — ways of speaking, and dictates on style — is expanding. More and more people courageously step out of the stall of the already stiflingly narrow single correct way of speaking, the only correct concept of democracy, the only correct interpretation of Europe and the West. The attempt to escape is not easy in itself; the risk of punishment is significant. Expulsion from academic life, job loss, stigma, running the university gauntlet — examples are slowly becoming commonplace. But even if we manage to get over the well-paid and round-the-clock watching knee-jerk liberal* border guards, we also have to deal with the deep-seated reflexes of any well-meaning audience. Despite the sophistication of reasoning, the praise of nationalism shakes the German stomach, even if it was written by Professor Hazony from Jerusalem. And no matter what velvety tone we use to talk about illiberal democracy, it sounds awful to German and Anglo-Saxon ears. Even today.
The rebellion against liberal spiritual oppression is not only widening, but also deepening. There are more and more compelling essays; thorough studies and inevitable monographs come to light. Even if they don’t confess it in the Brussels bubble, we can already see that the emperor is naked. The doctrine of ‘democracy can only be liberal’, the untouchable idol, the big fetish has fallen, we just have to wait for the stirred-up cloud of dust to settle, and then we will not only know, but see. It seems that conservative and Christian Democratic parties, political movements can escape the life-threatening embrace of liberals. “There’s no such thing as an illiberal democracy,” and similar sentences are now being recorded in the book of political nonsense, no matter where they come from. Conservative political thinkers have finally summoned up the courage to justify, by outlining with the elegance of mathematical proofs, that liberalism and conservatism represent two opposing positions in political theory. They have shown that the arguments of those who want to shove conservatism under the big umbrella of liberalism are wrong. Those who argue that the separation of powers, civil and political freedoms, the protection of private property and constrained governance — that is, the rule of law — can only be conceived within the spiritual framework of liberalism and only through the means of liberal democracy, they are wrong to stick to this benevolent explanation. Of course, we also know Hungarians who have solved this task in the past, but have realized, how much more pleasant it is to collect appreciative shrugs in Brussels, accompanied by the gentle smiles of lukewarm liberal salons, than to squeal like a black lamb at home in Budapest. That little nauseating bad feeling there in the region of the stomach doesn’t even seem like such a big price. Although today the temperature, furniture and elegance of Central European salons are less and less behind the Western ones, not to mention the cuisine. Crawling back will soon begin. As happened from Moscow once upon a time.
Today’s confusion of conservatism and liberalism can be traced back to the fact that in the great battles against totalitarianism, conservatives and liberals set aside their essential and then still obvious differences. They set them aside and made an alliance against the common enemy. An alliance against Nazism and Communism, Nazis and Communists. It was a long, centuries-long struggle, and the severity of the Allies’ thoughts, arguments, and fundamentals became apparent only when the Alliance lost its meaning with the fall of the Berlin Wall in the West and the withdrawal of the Soviets in the East.
Politicians, journalists, and even scholars easily alternate between conservative and liberal ideas and concepts. For a long time — too long, about two decades — it seemed that there was nothing wrong with that; even if it was intellectually inaccurate and remiss, no serious damage came from it. This was also thought by the Anglo-Saxon conservatives and the European Christian Democrats. However, the situation has now changed. Things have gotten serious. What used to seem like a slight mental defect, poor posture, a tolerable disorder, now prevents us from seeing clearly on important issues. It obscures the fact that the biggest challenge and opponent for conservatives and Christian Democrats today and again is liberalism and liberals. The principles of Christian Democrat and Liberal thinking are in stark contrast, and in the crosshairs of Liberal attacks are all that is most important to us: the cornerstones of the desired political order, the center of the Conservative-Christian Democratic tradition, religion, family.
The recognition that, if it goes on like this, Christian-Conservative forces will assist in weakening nations, eradicating religious traditions, and downgrading, mocking the family, here in Central Europe, has risen to the level of public and state politics. Here the red light came on, here we applied the emergency brake, and here, mainly in Poland and Hungary, we sounded the alarm bells. There was enough force here to pull back the European political home of the Christian Democrats and Conservatives, the European People’s Party, from the edge of the abyss. There was enough instinct and volume here to say that we could not risk the future of European Christian democracy for the sake of an understandable German demand for the Brussels coalition party to have its pattern to coincide with Berlin’s, as this is the easiest way to create harmony between the two centers of power.
So if the Christian Democrats enter the coalition with the left in Berlin, so should the EPP in the European Parliament. If we follow this trail, after the German elections, we can also get to know the beauties of the EPP and the coalition with the Greens, as it has already been already “tasted” in the laboratory in Vienna.
In Central Europe, however, not only good taste is rebelling against the idea of such perversion, but also common sense. The differences between liberal and Christian Democratic political theory are important not only in the world of university departments. They also have serious practical political consequences.
Liberals, for philosophical reasons going back to Kant — which I will not detail here — believe that every country, even those that are governed today as a non-liberal democracy, should be forced to accept this form of government. Christian Democrats, on the other hand, reject such a foreign policy because they believe that societies are held together in different ways and in peace. As the Arab Spring recently proved, liberal democracy can bring collapse and chaos, causing more harm than good. That is why we also support Donald Trump’s victory, because we are well aware of the foreign policy of American democratic governments based on moral imperialism. We were forced to taste it, but it didn’t taste good, so we don’t ask for a repeat.
Our policies are also intertwined on that topic, which is commonly referred to as “subsidiarity” in Brussels. Liberals say it is good to transfer as many national governmental powers as possible to international organizations. That is why they clap their hands politely; that is why vision is veiled and the heart beats faster when any international organization is given a new competence, a task and, of course, a horse and a weapon, as this gives universal ideas — European values, universal human rights — more encouragement and recognition.
However, the enthusiasm of Christian Democrats is less bubbly, because they see that such organizations are inevitably prone to arbitrariness, which those organizations tend to call the “rule of law”, which is merely a rule of blackmail, vulnerable to Soros’ network-like intrusion attempts, and if choices have to be made between the citizens of national communities and the big dogs of global capitals, in the end they always choose the latter. The citizens of European nations soon realized that today’s European institutions did not serve them, but the interests of George Soros and his ilk. They refuse to swallow the BS of Brussels, that a financial speculator, enriched by the destruction of others, is lurking in the corridors of Brussels to offer his selfless help to Europe.
Liberal and conservative politics clash, even as a matter of life and death, on the issue of migration. According to the Libernyáks [Libtards], there is no reason to be afraid of large-scale immigration and influx, even if the national and religious traditions of the uninvited guests are very different and actually contrary to ours. Terrorism, crime, anti-Semitism — the parallel social orders are only temporary disorders, perhaps the birth pangs of a beautiful new world that is about to come into the existence. However, the Conservative-Christian Democrat camp rejects social and human experimentation with uncertain outcomes because it considers the risk of chronic intercultural tension and violence to be unacceptably high. Without ignoring the laws of mathematics, it is difficult not to see the fact of a slow but sure, and even accelerating, population change.
There are also irreconcilable differences in education policy. Conservatives say we need to focus on characteristic national traditions, and the goal of education is to raise our children to be patriots who can pass on our proven traditions. And Christian Democrats also expect schools to confirm the gender identity of children given at birth and decided by the Creator, to help girls to become decent and respectable women, and boys to become men who are able to provide security and support for their families. Schools should protect the ideals and values of the family and keep gender ideology and rainbow propaganda away from minors. Liberals see all this as a dark medieval thinking at best and clerical fascism at worst, because the goal of school education is to take the child to (him/her/it)self, to enable to realize (him/her/it)self, to introduce him/her/it to the beauties of the universal political order, and they were deposited on him/her/it from the lives of his/her/its great-grandparents, grandparents, and parents.
Liberals also think, and for some mysterious reason defend in the most controversial way, that a universal and common sense is sufficient for just and morally sound government, and that there is no need for the absolute values revealed by God and the religious, biblical tradition that grew out of them. Moreover, a wall must be built between the church and the government; the influence of religion must be squeezed out of the world of public life. The Hungarian reader hardly knows the breadth, depth, and desperate struggle of this debate over the entire Western civilization. He thinks that this is only the lot of the Hungarian, possibly our “miserable Central European existence”. Therefore, he cannot and perhaps not appreciate the unshakable and witty foundation of our national-Christian constitution, that the state and the church function separately. Instead of separation, while preserving state and ecclesiastical autonomy, it seeks to integrate religion into the life of society, maintaining a spirit of tolerance for religious views. Moreover, the Christian Democrats think that religion, biblical traditions, and our churches may not have been as much needed for centuries to strengthen justice, public morality, or the common good as they are today.
The political strategy of liberals is based on dividing the world of politics into two parts. Liberals, on one hand, who are decent people and who accept that all decent people must hold the same political convictions and conclusions according to the rules of common sense. And there are those who have strayed from the space of liberalism, because they cannot emerge from ignorance or ancient instinctive hatred of the age, with a history so obviously intended to bring us to the happiness of liberal world values, world peace, and world governance. Therefore, from the point of view of the liberals, the group includes Trump, Johnson, Christians based on the New Testament, Jews based on the Old Testament, ayatollahs of all kinds, dictators of order and rank, communists and Nazis, and ultimately us, the Central European Christian Democrats. This is what ninety percent of the Western press reiterates.
However, we Christian Democrats have our own intellectual system by which we describe the universe of politics, and which, even with sufficient modesty, can be said to be more intelligent than the fatuous liberal worldview that dominates international organizations today.
The only chance for Christian Democracy is to engage in an open spiritual and political struggle. If it stops talking and doesn’t pretend to be a lunkhead who doesn’t see and understand what’s going on around him. If you can stand your ground and utter four sentences that can change the whole of European politics:
Our national and Christian principles are not liberal.
They were created before liberalism.
They are opposed to liberalism.
Liberalism is destroying them today.
Europe and its place in the world
In the middle of the first decade of the new millennium, 81 percent of all investment in the world economy came from the West and 18 percent from the East. Today, ten plus a few years later, 58 percent of all investment comes from the East and 40 percent from the West. The pace of technological development can scarcely be followed. Europe, which envisages technological competition on a civil-economic basis, is not even able to see the backside of the United States and China, which compete on a military-economic basis. And since all epoch-making technology and innovation has shifted from research for the armies to civilian economic systems, Europe cannot even enter this competition until it has an army of serious size, that is, a common army.
Barely twenty years ago, the European Union announced that in ten years’ time the euro would compete with the dollar in the world economy; we would create a unified market from Lisbon to Vladivostok, and Europe would be at the forefront of the world in a race called technical progress. These were the goals. What happened happened. The dollar has knocked out the euro, we are cutting ourselves off from the Russian market with sanctions, and we are buying important technologies from our competitors.
The EU felt that things were not moving in the way and in the direction it envisioned. In 2012, the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Research and Innovation indicated that the EU had contributed 29% to total world production in 2010, and this would fall to 15-17% by 2050. Today we are writing 2020, and that has already happened now, so thirty years early. This “worthy” office also predicted that the European Union would support increasing migration, mainly from North Africa and the Middle East, due to population concerns. All this in 2012!
It is also estimated that by 2050, without Russia, twenty percent of the European population will be Muslim. Today, it seems likely that by 2050, we will have to rely more on a Muslim majority in the big Western cities.
It is not surprising that Central European countries have chosen a different future, free of immigration and migration. Nor is it surprising that the focus of V4 policy is on improving competitiveness, even if Brussels wants to go in the exact opposite direction. Climate goals raised to absurdity, social Europe, common tax system, multicultural society.
No wonder — what was reasonably foreseeable happened. The West has lost its appeal in the eyes of Central Europe, and our way of life does not seem desirable to Westerners. We need to keep Europe together in the years ahead so that there seems to be no chance of reversing this historic trend. They cannot force their will on us, and we cannot change their spiritual, intellectual, and political shifts. We also need to find a way to work together in this stalemate, until the future of Europe is decided in Italy. Right or left. Although the departure of the United Kingdom pushed back the positions of national sovereignty, anti-migration and competitive economy, the Brusselian intervention was engineered to overthrow the Polish Christian Democrat government, the Right had stabilized the situation in Croatia and Serbia for years, and the chances of survival for the entire Bulgarian ruling party, despite the prime minister being under fire, are not bad either. Babiš and Fidesz hold their own, and the new Slovak government has not left the V4 camp. The system of rule of blackmail — called the rule of law — failed to build up. Although the Netherlands is spectacularly moving away from the European Union, its situation is increasingly reminiscent of that of pre-departure England, but they have managed to keep the Dutch in place for the time being. We have also managed to keep the Eurozone’s chances of survival alive, to save the troubled southern member states from collapse, to preserve the economic dynamism of Central Europe, and we have not yet been caught between the millstones of the China-US world struggle.
We must stay on the path of agreements and compromises, and implement our ambitious financial-budgetary plans, which have been brought to the roof over the summer, despite whatever the European Parliament says. This is possible if Chancellor Merkel’s succession is managed by the Germans, keeping the political quake below grade four on the Richter scale.
Virus, defense, prospects
The second wave of the virus is here. We are in it. It has arrived. As expected and as we expected. Like the first one, it also came from abroad. It was brought to Hungary from abroad. It is a pandemic, and we live in a globalized world where everyone faces the same serious challenges, like the virus. In the spring, Hungary defended itself well. We were among the 25 most successful countries in the world. Others could not repel the virus with such success, and gave the infection a chance to erupt.
We have to defend ourselves again. There will be hot moments, but everyone who needs it will get the proper care. We will protect the people’s health and lives. We asked the Hungarian people’s opinion in time. Everyone was able to have their say in the national consultation. Nearly two million have done so, and with that they have decided how we should defend ourselves during the fall. The will is unanimous: Hungary must work! We cannot allow the virus to paralyze the country, the economy, the schools and everyday life again. We must therefore protect ourselves against the virus by protecting the lives of vulnerable elderly people, the operation of our schools and kindergartens, and jobs at the same time.
This is a different tactic than the one we used in the first wave. The situation is different than it was in the spring. It was then necessary to close down completely, because we were facing an unknown enemy. We had to gain time to prepare our health care system. It worked. We won the first battle. The epidemic curve was flattened in the spring, so we could prepare the country. Today, we no longer have to worry about anyone being left without adequate care, as the Hungarian health care system is also prepared to treat large masses of ill people. Now everything is available for the defense; we have the necessary equipment and as much of everything as we need. Hospitals have epidemiological preparedness. We will know when a hospital receives coronavirus patients, and we can also send doctors and nurses to the places they are needed. Thousands of professionals prepared to take care of Hungarians. Whoever gets sick will be in good hands in hospitals.
Another wave of the epidemic demands greater responsibility from all of us. The success of the defense depends on all of us following the rules. Take special care of our elderly parents and grandparents. Only with them is our family whole; they cannot be replaced.
Now our specialists are coming next. They can tell you how to defend well and successfully again. A prepared healthcare system, conscientious professionals, widespread cooperation. We have already succeeded once in the spring, we will succeed together in the autumn! An old joke from communist times: “we know what will happen, but until then what will happen?” We know there will be a general election in the spring of 2022. Until then, there will be a defense. According to optimistic virologists, a vaccine against the coronavirus could be developed by the spring of 2021. Due to the secrecy of pharmaceutical companies for business reasons and the rivalry of the great powers, a sea of false news confuses hopeful people and encourages tens and hundreds of thousands of self-made virologists to speculate. Our scientists, who are connected to our operational staff, are also hoping for good news from next year. And if we have the vaccine, we will have to get a few million doses, and then there may be a planned vaccination of the applicants. In the meantime, we need to continuously strengthen epidemiologically-prepared health care, the lion’s share of the defense, strengthen the management system, speed up digitization, rationalize administrative burdens, settle the confusing legal relationships, and break through the ongoing seventy-percent wage increase for nurses. All this in defense, continuing the reorganizations that began in the spring.
Similarly, we expect the economic operational officers to take economic measures that can protect jobs, the living standard of families, and the security of pensions. Moreover, we expect more from them. They have to push the country out of defense into attack mode. Not only do we want to protect the level and standard that Hungary has reached in ten years, but that everyone can continue to move forward every year. Between 2015 and 2019, gross national product (GDP) per capita grew by 39.65 percent, while Germany grew by 13.3 percent and France by 10.1 percent. Even then, we can’t achieve with less; we have proven that we are capable of it, we have the talent, the strength, the knowledge and the will. Hungary cannot retreat back into its house like a snail; it must move, flood, grow and rise like a Liszt Rhapsody or a bubble in wine. It will be a huge task, which is why Mihály Varga [Minister of the Economy] will be the least-envied man in Hungary in 2021.
Hopefully, with a successful defense against the epidemic, by a muscled up health care system, unprecedented economic growth, full employment, a home-building boom that has surpassed even the previous ones, and a 13th month pension payment under reconstruction, we will arrive at the 2022 election.
In the meantime, we have no rest from the Left either, who cannot be expected to help, even now, during our greatest difficulties, in a pandemic. They only scupper and cavil, weakening the national forces and cooperation, smearing the specialists and political leaders in charge of the defense of the country, betraying and revealing in Brussels, gnawing and tricking. We got this Left! Plus, now they are combined with Jobbik [neo-Nazi party; nationalists left them years ago]. Now they are distilled together in the mason jar. One doesn’t even know whether to cry or laugh.
And while the sight is fun, the stakes are huge, as they have been before here in the Carpathian Basin. We will also be talking about our freedom in 2022.
They are the same again
The one who has the capability of making a decision is free. The central issue of the more than 1,100-year-old history of the Hungarians in the Carpathian Basin has always been to maintain or regain a free and independent Hungary. We had to struggle every day to gain or control our own decision. This idea permeates Hungarian history; this community of freedom connects the people living in the Carpathian Basin.
The greatest threat to our national self-determination today is the global, globalist network that promotes an open society and seeks to abolish national frameworks. The goals of György Soros’ network, with unlimited financial and human resources, are clear. By accelerating migration, to create mixed-ethnicity, open societies, dismantle national decision-making and put it in the hands of the global elite.
Against this, in order to strengthen the national framework, national resistance developed in Europe in the early 2010s, of which Hungary has been a considerable force from the very beginning. The 2010 change of government and constitutional revolution provided an opportunity to dismantle the frameworks and structures that serve the interests of the liberal and colonizing global elite. To this end, a new constitution, a number of pieces of legislation and unorthodox measures have been enacted. National politics broke with narrow elitist and ideology-driven governance and built the new political course in line with the will of society. It is based on freedom; that is, the ability to make independent decisions.
The struggle between the global elite and national resistance has not yet been decided. It is clear that the global elite does not care that policies contrary to its interests will take root in Central Europe.
We could see what happened in the Polish presidential campaign. Back in the spring, it seemed that the Polish Left was in ruins, and their inherited disputes would make their candidate unlikely from the start. That was not the case, the candidate on the Left, behind which the Soros network, the Brussels elite and the international media were lined up, forced the national side into a big fight in a few weeks. Andrzej Duda finally managed, barely, to surpass his leftist opponent in a fierce fight.
We should not deceive ourselves: the global elite will apply the same strategy in Hungary in the 2022 election campaign.
Their tool is the already-fallen Left, led by Ferenc Gyurcsány, its youth organization Momentum Party, and its billion-dollar sponsor György Soros. They are the forces of the past who once destroyed the country.
Although there are still various party logos on the opposition side, and sometimes quarrels can be heard from their ranks, in reality there are no more parties that act of their own volition. The work is done: everyone from Jobbik to LMP is ground up and stuffed in like a sausage. Communities that once had an independent identity were replaced by the Left People’s Front, which is a front serving the Soros Network.
In 2022 they are preparing for a decisive battle. Behind them will be the international media, Brussels bureaucrats and NGOs disguised as civilians. There can be no doubt that everything will be done for power and money. It is time for us to get ready, too. After difficult years of governance, we need to return to the electoral battlefield. It’s time to prepare, so we can ride out at the right moment. A great battle awaits us in 2022. Get ready!
— Viktor Orbán
|*||Libernyák: a slang word to describe liberals, used around 1800, describing a coat worn in the rain. The closest equivalence in English is probably “Libtard”. — translator