Consider Mississippi and Hungary.

Central European University, under relentless pressure by Hungary’s popular prime minister to get the hell out, is about to do so. It will probably move to Vienna. Lots of people are upset about it. Hungary’s only world-class university has been chased away by paranoid hyper-nationalist know-nothings.

UD proposes that this might be for the best. The ultimate provincial backwater and proud of it; known, if known at all, for its suicide rate, Hungary, like our own Mississippi, elects chauvinistic dolts and ejects the non-doltish. Mississippi and Hungary are hemorrhaging population, whereas Vienna – precisely the sort of place (despite its own rightish political leadership) to which intelligent Hungarians flee – is growing.

If it is the will of people that the places they call home dissolve into nothingnesses ruled by Ubus, if they want to be places outsiders visit to track the spread of wisteria over Faulkner’s manse, or get soused with the ghost of Gyula Krúdy in his favorite watering hole, eh. It’s their right; precisely because of their “shabby littleness,” these places threaten no one.

Hungarians are the west’s Sentinelese. Really best not to intervene. Sad but true.

The founder of the Central European University says the president of Hungary has created “a mafia state.”

And George Soros seems to think Hungary’s president will take that as an insult.

Hungary: Land of Intellectuals

An investigating committee has cleared Hungary’s president of plagiarizing his 1992 doctoral thesis, despite the inclusion of many pages copied from other sources and a long list of errors.

A five-member committee at Budapest’s Semmelweis University says academics at the then-independent University of Physical Education should have noticed and called attention to similarities between large parts of Schmitt’s thesis analyzing the Olympic Games and works by other authors.

See now Japan is currently demonstrating the problem with being a patriarchy. I mean, go right ahead, be a patriarchy, but when you patriarchically decide to lecture the little ladies on how they have to figure out a way to get their husbands to fuck them so as to be impregnated by them or else the country’s going to shrivel up and demographically die… they might not listen to you! They’re downtrodden, see, you downtrodded them, and they hate you because you’re the fucking Japanese patriarchy. See? So when they tell you to shove it up your ass you shouldn’t be too surprised.

When they tell you YOU get knocked up and make Japanese babies you stupid motherfuckers, you shouldn’t be offended because you’re the ones who make life hell for Japanese women and now you want to make it more hellacious by burdening them with children in a nauseatingly patriarchal state.

I mean, take a look at Hungary, boys! Same deal. How’s Hungary doing as it frantically tries to get its dick up the national vaginal canal?

Short answer: Not well.

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times: Now that Israel’s a Theocracy…

… go ahead and say FAAAAACK you to America, with its absurd independent judiciary and disgraceful separation of church and state … Get thee to Jerusalem, where no one’s going to get between you and queer-hating orthodoxy.

I mean, you can waste your time and money appealing, but I’m gonna guess that even our pious Supreme Court’s gonna disappoint you. Realistically speaking, your options are Israel, Hungary, Iran, Afghanistan, and Vatican City, and I’m thinking Israel is your best option.

‘The Ukrainians’ efforts have demonstrated that liberal democracy and human dignity are causes people are still willing to fight and die for. They are showing that these ideas have great power.’

Also the Iranians’ incredibly brave efforts. The attention of the world is, rightly, on the dissenters in the streets of Tehran as well as on the Ukrainians. But the forces of illiberal democracy – A sham designation, no? Fascism is better. – in Russia, Hungary, Italy, and of course right here in the MAGA movement – are certainly on the march, and we must always call them out, and fight them with whatever weapons we have.

I do wonder about Europe’s militant hijabis. What do they have to say? Why have we not heard their opinion of this massive anti-hijab movement?

‘Fukuyama argues that liberalism is threatened not by a rival ideology, but by “absolutized” versions of its own principles. On the right, the promoters of neoliberal economics have turned the ideal of individual autonomy and the free market into a religion, warping the economy and leading to dangerous systemic instability. And on the left, he argues, progressives have abandoned individual autonomy and free speech in favor of claims of group rights that threaten national cohesion.’

Oh. And here’s where UD gets all excited:

He’s more scathing about the “postliberal” intellectuals of the American right, with their admiration for Hungary’s Viktor Orban, like the legal scholar Adrian Vermeule (whom he describes as having “flirted with the idea of overtly authoritarian government”) and the political scientist Patrick Deneen.

The more high-profile outing of our enemies, the better. Bravo, and keep bashing.

Orban Decay

Mr. Orban found support from Mr. Trump, former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, and from the Italian populist leader and former Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini. But they are all gone, as Mr. Jansa is expected to be…

For UD’s completely bored take on Hungary, go here.

Oh, and note to Vermeule and the brethren: Reserve your Budapest Baptismal Blowout today! While you still can.

“The last Hungarian of world-historical significance was Zsa Zsa Gabor.”

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.”

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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.

“Zemmour this week finally got the required signatures of sponsorship to stand in the first round of voting in April’s Presidential election – but his poll numbers have suffered a drop in recent days. He has been an outspoken admirer of Russian president Vladimir Putin and has lamented in the past that France does not have ‘its own Putin’.”

Even Hungary is taking in Ukrainian refugees; but Eric Zemmour says absolutely not. Not one Ukrainian refugee should be accepted into France.

It’s a little difficult to see France voting for its very own Vlad Putin, Eric Zemmour, especially (cough) now.

Zemmour’s tanking poll numbers suggest he might have backed the wrong butcher.

My Own Private Cathophate

Catholic integralism has enjoyed a small renaissance on the right in recent years, taken up by prominent apologists like Adrian Vermeule, a law professor at Harvard, and Sohrab Ahmari, the op-ed editor at the New York Post.

[In this connection, a] sort of authoritarian tourism [is emerging among] a new generation of right-wingers who, alienated from the secular liberalism of America, are attracted to illiberal alternatives. The same impulses that took [Brent Bozell] to Franco’s Spain now attract the Tucker Carlsons and Rod Drehers of the world to Orbán’s Hungary. Theorists like Vermeule and Ahmari might dream of a Christian commonwealth, but Orbán is showing how it is actually done, providing a real world model to emulate…

**********************

Afghanistan’s caliphate will no doubt be Vermeule and company’s next stop on the authoritarian theocracy tourist trail. Excise Mohammed and you’re in the same spiritual universe, with a close to identical social ethos. Mawlawi Hibatullah Akhundzada, with his global ambitions, is a far better tourist attraction than provincial Orbán, for while integralist Hungary contents itself with its iota of irrelevant territory, Akhundzada is just getting started.

Okay when you read about Andy Harris this morning, remember, he’s the ONLY Republican representative from my state!

The ONLY one; and he represents people way over THERE… over on the far right… the eastern shore… which is BARELY Maryland… Let’s call it Tidewater West Virginia or something …

Back over here, in MARYLAND, we don’t elect stinky doodoos who do a doodoo in front of the Capitol police days after a violent insurrection because they MUST be allowed to break the rules and carry their guns onto the House floor because what if there’s another insurrection and he can be of assistance to the Proud Boys? Pence is gone, but someone’s gotta pop Pelosi…

Cosmic convergence, too, with one of this blog’s perennials, His Holiness Adrian Vermeule — who shares with Andy Harris an adoration of Hungary’s dictator, Victor Orban!

Timothy Snyder, After the First Impeachment.

“Making our institutions a joke is exactly what helps authoritarians like Mr Putin survive. If there’s no example of things going better, it makes their life much much easier. A big sad thing which is happening is that there is no longer an American example … that dissidents in China or [the] opposition in Hong Kong or journalists in Russia or Poland or Hungary or whatever can point to — thanks to Mr Trump.”

“What they mainly worry about is what [Viktor] Orbán has called ‘liberal imperialism’ – having the US criticise democratic erosion and the abuse of human rights around the world again.”

Having the US criticize democratic erosion and the abuse of human rights around the world? Perish the thought!

Hungarian Requiem

The EU Court of course rules against Hungary’s having hounded out the Central European University.

Hungary long ago decided it wanted to be the Alabama of Europe. Countries are free to be cultural pits, if that’s what they want to be. Nobody writes about Hungary anymore, except for when the EU Court makes its meaninglessness official.

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