This article is from Democracy Digest:
Budapest’s response to the Coronavirus pandemic has been to suspend parliament and give Prime Minister Viktor Orbán open-ended powers to rule by decree. Will the latest move by the ruling Fidesz party cement authoritarianism in Europe? Deutsche Welle reports (above).
The changes of the past decade have laid the groundwork for an even more far-reaching legacy that will transform society at the roots and may outlast both Orban and his political system. Dramatic change has taken place at all levels of education, in research and cultural institutions and in the economic system, the FT’s Valerie Hopkins writes:
One institution unlikely to come under threat is the controversial House of Terror. The museum, which opened in 2002 during Orban’s first term, is part of his attempt to tailor the country’s historical narratives. … The research director is Marton Bekes, a 37-year-old who also edits Kommentar, a journal that can often be seen on Orban’s desk during video addresses. Bekes shares the prime minister’s view that if you own culture, you can “do a whole era”. “You can lose elections – it is better if you don’t – but even if you do, cultural hegemony is yours,” he says. ….Bekes is hopeful that Orban will be in charge of Hungary for “tens of more years”. “This cultural work is a long march,” he concludes. “But we don’t yet have cultural hegemony, so we have to keep winning elections.”
Read the full perspective here.