In the wake of Orban’s massive victory, Les UDs have been going at it hammer and goulash on whether they should give a shit. If you read UD, you know where she stands: Countries determined to shrink to nothingness should be allowed to do so. Hungary’s population can’t even manage ten million (Orban’s efforts to get Hungarians to reproduce are going nowhere — too drunk to get it up.), and many of those are actively trying to kill themselves.
The smartest have left — Hungary is brain-drain central. Maybe these people noticed that the country had one world-class university and it threw it out. To thunderous applause from its suicidal populace.
The UN estimates a population of only 6.4 million by the end of the century.
“Can you name one famous Hungarian dissident?” UD asked Mr UD – a Pole, and a political scientist extremely well-versed in the region. Long pause. “K-Konrad?” “You can’t even remember his first name?” No. “And I don’t want to upset you, but he died in 2019.”
“Hungary is becoming the center of the intellectual far-right world…”
“Oooh, scary. Karlovich, Vermeule… the freak show freaks in Nyíregyháza!”
Mr UD looked pissed.
“Look,” said I. “The national anthem of modern Hungary is I GOTTA BE ME. Until it invades the Rhineland, Hungary, like all other countries, has a right to drill down to its essence – hyper-conservative, rabidly anti-intellectual, radically insular – and be that thing. The upside for us is that we can safely ignore it forever. Hell, it seems to be ignoring itself. If you want to visit faded post-imperialism, go to Vienna.”
Update: Hungary is also a big loser in the kleptocracy sweepstakes, with the EU proceeding toward possibly stripping it of the billions of dollars for public works projects that Orban has long been siphoning off for his oligarchs.