The name of the Hungarian Prime Minister, Viktor Orbán, is on the lips of most left-wing, liberal politicians and intellectuals in Europe. They have adorable tantrums, denouncing him as ‘authoritarian’, ‘autocratic’ or, even uglier, ‘dictatorial’, as they congratulate themselves on their righteousness and courage in speaking out.
A few months ago I visited Budapest. On the way in from the airport I saw several billboards depicting Orbán and his rich chum Lörinc Mészáros, the mayor of Felcsút, Orbán’s home town. Beneath, in large letters, were two words: ‘They Steal’. It seems to me a rather poor autocracy where that sort of thing goes on.
Similarly, Lajos Simicska, a former close colleague of Orbán’s, gave a interview — widely and gleefully reported — in which he referred to Orbán as a geci, the rudest word in the language.