Blogger Ulrika Lejnarová, highlighting air pollution data from the Slovak Hydrometeorological Institute [sk], wonders [sk] why Slovakia, while often paying attention to the critical conditions in Hungary [en], is doing little to inform its own citizens of the domestic situation adequately, in order to avoid health complications.
Latest stories from Quick Reads + Hungary
The Contrarian Hungarian reports that three right-wing demonstrations in support of the Hungarian government have taken place only this weekend, in protest against increased international pressure on Hungary for its defunct economy and political turmoil.
Vastagbőr blog collected [hu] some internet memes about the President of Hungary Pál Schmitt, the newest of which appeared after hvg.hu news site published an article titled ‘Serious Suspicion of Plagiarism in Pál Schmitt's Ph.D. Dissertation‘ [hu]. According to hvg.hu, the President had allegedly plagiarized his dissertation (‘Analysis of the Modern Olympic Games Program') from the text of a Bulgarian sports expert Nikolai Georgiev. The Presidential Office claims [hu] that Schmitt and Georgiev knew each other well personally, collaborated and used the same sources.
Spotted by Locals: Experience cities like a local features a few dozen locations, including CEE cities of Belgrade, Bucharest, Budapest, Krakow, Ljubljana, Prague, Riga, Sofia, Tallinn, Vilnius, Warsaw, and Zagreb. A random sample post from Zagreb, Croatia: Hrelić Flea Market – The Aleph of Zagreb; from Bucharest, Romania: The Haunted House – Armenian Neighbourhood; from Sofia, Bulgaria: Nissim – A True Old-School Bookstore.
Redjade, a Hungary-based activist, published a video interview [en] with Balázs Nagy-Navarro, the leader of the public media trade union. Nagy-Navarro went on hunger strike with two of his colleagues after the Hungarian public television MTV broadcast a report in which chief judge Zoltán Lomnici was blurred from the background of an interview. The journalist accused the production leadership of the TV channel of being unprofessional. The quality of the news published by public media outlets has recently been questioned by an international mission of free speech NGOs as well.
Hungarian Spectrum and The Contrarian Hungarian write about the Oct. 23 anti-government rally, organized through a Facebook community called Egymillióan a magyar sajtószabadságért [hu; 88,272 'likes']/One Million for the Freedom of Press in Hungary [en; 720 'likes'] – and about a pro-government rally, which was scheduled to take place on the same day some 700 meters away from the opposition rally, but was cancelled on Oct. 17, allegedly due to PM Viktor Orbán's Oct. 23 visit to Brussels.
The Wayward Hungarian, a new English-language Tumblr blog, writes about the recent initiative by a Hungarian activist, who has “hacked” the regulation targeting the homeless living in Budapest's District VIII. The regulation imposes a fine of “up to 250 dollars if one is conducting ‘lifestyle-like’ behavior in public, but the municipality may now also fine the same amount if one stores items in public areas that may be accessories to the selfsame ‘lifestyle-like’ behavior. Items such as blankets for instance. This means that people can be fined for unsettlingly vague things like ‘sitting on a rock’ and ‘having a blanket'.”
The Contrarian Hungarian writes about “a long weekend of protests” in Budapest – here and here, and about “a protest art competition that serves both as creative outlet and as protest against the most recent instances of the government’s restrictions on the freedom of the press” – here. Hungarian Spectrum comments on today's protest: “[...] the fact that more than 100 trade unions and civic organizations managed to create a Hungarian version of the Polish Solidarity movement signals that something is brewing.”
The Contrarian Hungarian reports that photojournalists working for two Hungarian online news portals have been banned from entering the Parliament building following the publication of photos of PM Orbán's handwritten notes on the speech he was delivering on the country's defense plan.
Hungarian Spectrum writes about “higher education and the question of ‘tuition'” in Hungary.
The Contrarian Hungarian reviews the most important items on the Hungarian parliament's legislative agenda of Fall 2011.
The Contrarian Hungarian writes about a new regulation that requires “every municipal council in Hungary [to] set up a table to display the country’s newly enacted constitution”: “The table must be covered by glass, and the constitution on the table must be opened on page 28 [...]. Next to the table, a chair must be set. [...]” Marietta Le of Remainder of Budapest reports several sightings of mock “Constitution's Tables” around Budapest.
Hungarian Spectrum writes about the Hungarian authorities’ dubious ways of dealing with what by all accounts appear to be hate crimes against the Roma.
Eva Balogh of Hungarian Spectrum commemorates István Bibó (1911-1975), who in her opinion is one of the greatest political thinkers in Hungary during the 20th century.
Eva S. Balogh of Hungarian Spectrum writes about Hungary's new law on churches – according to which the legal status of a church is to be decided by the parliament – and the alleged role of the Church of Scientology in the adoption of this law.
Eva Balogh of Hungarian Spectrum writes about the situation of Roma in Hungary against the beckground of US-talks with representatives of the Roma group in the country.
Eva Balogh of Hungarian Spectrum reports on how US representatives are becoming increasingly concerned about the new Hungarian constitution and how the Hungarian government reacts to US and European crtitique against it.
Edward Hugh of Hungary Economy Watch comments on reactions to the Hungarian government's decision to drastically cut public debt.
Eva Balogh of Hungarian Spectrum takes a critical look at Prime Minister Orban's difficulties with balancing between Hungary as nation and state.
Eva Balogh of Hungarian Spectrum writes about the trial against and acquittal of Sándor Képíró, accused of the 1942 Novi Sad Massacre, in Serbia during World War II.
Eva Balogh of Hungarian Spectrum reports that from the schoolyear 2012/2013, Hungarian high school students will be able to study basic military science as a subject to be included in their highschool degree, and goes on to present other critical views on what she feels is a militarization of Hungary.
Eva Balogh of Hungarian Spectrum takes a critical look at governmental investments in the energy industry, and asks whether they are wise, looking at the country's increasing economic reliance on foreign lenders.
Max Steinbeis of Verfassungsblog writes about [GER] changes in the composition of and requirements for Hungary's Constitutional Court as well as the process towards changes in electoral law in the country.
Eva Balogh of Hungarian Spectrum reports on the adoption of a new and criticized law on religions and religious communities in Hungary.
Edward Hugh of Baltic Economy Watch argues that Central and East European economies are more exposed to risk in case of a Eurozone crisis than what financial ratings say.
Hungarian Spectrum writes about the staff cuts at the three Hungarian public media outlets: “My understanding is that the two television stations [MTV and Dune TV] and Magyar Rádió have a total of something like 3,500 employees. From the little one can learn about the government's plans, most likely 1,000 people will get pink slips between now and the fall. [...] Yet once again it looks as if this necessary financial step is being used to change the political coloring of MTV even more.”