Are we replaying 30s fascism?

Paul Krugman’s column in the NY Times upset me yesterday… partly because he started calling the world economic situation what it really is: A Depression; partly because of his comment on Hungary:

And in at least one nation, Hungary, democratic institutions are being undermined as we speak.

One of Hungary’s major parties, Jobbik, is a nightmare out of the 1930s: it’s anti-Roma (Gypsy), it’s anti-Semitic, and it even had a paramilitary arm. But the immediate threat comes from Fidesz, the governing center-right party.

Fidesz won an overwhelming Parliamentary majority last year, at least partly for economic reasons; Hungary isn’t on the euro, but it suffered severely because of large-scale borrowing in foreign currencies and also, to be frank, thanks to mismanagement and corruption on the part of the then-governing left-liberal parties. Now Fidesz, which rammed through a new Constitution last spring on a party-line vote, seems bent on establishing a permanent hold on power.

I say I am worried because I am currently reading Erik Larson‘s book In the Garden of Beasts, his superlative view of Germany, small and weak after the first World War, and the rise of Hitler and the Nazi Party in the early 30s when they could have been easily stopped and catastrophe could have been avoided. I am particularly concerned with the anti-Semitism which the European right has fallen back on too many times before…along with the anti-Roma movement which has also plagued earlier European depressions.

Maybe we can laugh when we think of
Hungary taking over Europe.

Maybe we are that stupid.

About btchakir

Retired Theatre Producer, Graphic Designer, Usability Tester and General Troubleshooter with a keen interest in Politics and The Stage. Currently heard on WSHC, 89.7 FM (on line at and occasionally dabbling in Community Theatre.

Posted on December 12, 2011, in Business, Economics, editorial, ethics, Finance, government, history, Holocaust, Legal, Lies, News, Opinion, Politics, quote, Religion, Taxes, vote, Warning, Word from Bill and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. well they’ve always gotta watch their backs

  2. I spend half my time in Paris – the rest in NY – but during the first years after 9/11 when the French would ask “what’s going on in the US?” I’d tell them I understood what happened in Germany. Here, as there, it was an incremental process. Every day the mainspring wound a little tighter, a little tighter -every day there was a new, but slight, intrusion on privacy rights, another bag scan, another photo ID another regulation or prohibition … and everywhere there was a sense of fear and paranoia. Gays are the new Jews – an easily targeted group to blame for undermining our society. Couple that with a ruling party whose goal was total unquestioned authority and eventually …

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