Hungarian Participation Democracy's Ghost.

I have been a community development social worker and NGO activist from 1988 until 2007 back in Hungary. I am using the democracy development single issue movement points of view to let people understand the current affairs. During the first 7 years I wrote nearly 1000 articles about employment, democracy development, agriculture NGO situation. After this election I decided I turn my blog to English.


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Construction inside

2015.03.10. 12:28 :: Saman

As a social worker we working with individuals in an advertisement framework, sometimes we invite the people for group work and we working with communities too. If numerous people suffering with same problems or they can learn form each other even more than alone that could be a reason to find solutions together.

One style of the community development is the Social Planning. When we just help to create a forum and let the people plead. Stand for an idea, critics, question, new project or system changes. In this case we believe our clients strong enough to solve this problem. They are adults, competent people. Definitely don't need to offer them an "innocent" status. They don't need a hero type helper.

 In my blog so many times I made a comment to an article which is approaching to the advocacy. Because of 20 years experience in the Hungarian democracy development movement activity I know our mentality, our dreams about the democratic changes and finally the story of the system creating. How we fail with the participation expectation. How we loose the control in our democracy.

 Tamas Pal who made a huge research back to 1980s he said if we are gallant enough to stand up in public with a problem or question the experience is teaching us. If the organisation around us making a negative sanction if we would be punished or ignored that cases teaching us. We become a "good servant" if mostly this two option available. To be a CITIZEN, to arrive the democratic world we need positive experience. If we would stood up with an issue my organisation could be helpful? With the punishment we train each other to do not complain, but finally if we can't talk about the problems we just let our life be rotten.

 With my onion leave model lets talk about how we create mandates between different levels. How is the nation create mandate when we send someone to talk a "name of us" with IMF or Russian Federation about our modernisation. Talk about money, technological investment, learning or whatever we need. Behind this negotiation how we decide witch modernisation level we want for our future? Do we take seriously when the Lisbon Strategy talking about "knowledge based society" or there is no meaning for us. Do we want something other?


Technically behind this we have parties, government decision prep work. However its could be connected with public discussions in media, NGO sector and science.

In a grassroots we should talk with our reference group what we can fancy as a "common interest".

Even our opinion as an input could be a "group mandate" if we our talk based on a "family life strategy".

After the "individual" finally we find 4 other level of the group mandate. If I talk a name of a group, I can using a "community identity". If I have mandate I can talk a name of my group, as a ...

1. family life strategy

2. reference group, including NGO organisations

3. party commitment

4. modernisation level

 The Hungarian democracy deficit is based on a culture. The last 5 generations we over and over destroyed the people dreams. If someone create a small company, business or community mission, after 5-10-25 years the "system" our lovely government start to label them as a public enemy!

When we stood up against the king, the dreamers was cool down with a lost war. After 1867 finally lots of us disappointed and went to somewhere else. In 1906, in 1919, 1930, 1945, 1956. We doing that, system by system start labelling the ambitious citizens. If they not Hungarian enough, or if they simple just try to do something, own something, funding community missons. We have drótos tót, bolgár kertész, tirpák, kulák, zsidó, maszek, tulaj, etc. Lots of negative connotation to press to feel the people shame if they owners or community activists.

Regime by regime the new movements tried to kill the former regime man including the independent stakeholders. Even in this ages to be an NGO activist or company owner started to be dangerous.

Between the 0-1 level my grandmas always try to forewarn me about this! They try to explain how risky to do something! A "prototype Hungarian" never hesitate to telling you how foolish to do something for the community life!

Between 1 and 2. Just look at the NGO activist life. The FIDESZ has 14.000 full time staff. The other parties maybe 300 all together. The biggest NGOs maximum 10. We are a "voluntary sector" properly!

Between the 2-3 level this government made a new law against the blogs. I closed this blog when my lovely government threaten me with 10.000 Pound sentencing tariff per article. This government changed the national council about the employment, minimum wage etc. I mean they destroyed this. They cut the unions rights. They making every system change without negotiation. They don't need the opinion of the scientist or any kind of involved sector wide organisation.

Between the 3-4 what could happened? This conflict clamp speeding up how we progress to the Lisbon goals. Where is the "knowledge based society based full employment"?

Yesterday I promised I will put to the focus the 0. level. Why we are, the Hungarians not assertive:

The first leaves will be the personality in the "assertivity" spot light. 

  1.  Why or why not we creating questions?        
  2. How we can or can not explain our needs?
  3.  Can we can or can not say no the criminal offer or the humiliating frameworks? 


  1. For the assertive behaviour we need a lifelong or some generation experience about a normal situation. When we doing regimes which is stand over we over and over again train the next generations against the assertive attitude.
  2. Actually this government completely deaf for any questions. If the 10.000 people demonstrating in the street the government media just label them as a CIA agent activity. If they not open for any feed back or any advice, proposal after we have no reason to speak.
  3. For the democracy we need our own interest representation. Even some groups need someone who help their voice audible. We need independent media, publicity and watchdogs. We need the rule of law. And finally we need the judgement independency. Because this 4 sector destroyed properly the Hungarians couldn't believe we can say no, any sort of criminal or humiliating offer. Not only is it a technical problem how to find media, relevant NGO or persecution. I talking about a construction inside which is decide "better keep the silence". Too dangerous to complain.

In my next article I will show you the cultural marks of this phenomenon.

first part of this topic

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