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Nov 22, 2016 - Zoltán Kovács

America and the Matrix red pill against “liberal non-democracy”

“Congratulations. What great news. Democracy is still alive,” read the message posted on Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s Facebook page soon after the world learned that Donald J. Trump had been elected the 45th President of the United States of America.

Some had reported that the prime minister had endorsed the Republican candidate during the campaign, but in fact, he had stuck closely to protocol by expressing support only for policies. After the election, though, results became clear in the early morning hours of November 9, the prime minister began speaking more plainly and forthrightly about a hope for the end of “liberal non-democracy.”

On Monday, answering a question from the press with his Serbian counterpart, Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic, Prime Minister Orbán put it even more candidly. He expressed his hope that this election outcome marks the end of an “intellectual dictatorship rooted in the hubris of western, liberal intellectuals.” He said that “it has been hugely hurtful” when “anyone or any country” who dared to speak up and express a different opinion regarding “migration, relations of men and women, family, nation” was then considered to be “on a morally lower standpoint.”

“We have had enough of the lecturing, the fact that we cannot tell our opinion because we have to fear being stigmatized morally or politically. This is impossible. So we have to get rid of this oppression, this intellectual oppression. And the American Presidential election is an important [step], it is not the end of this process, but an important stage.” In other words, PM Orbán is hoping that the so-called dictatorship of political correctness is coming to an end.

Over the summer, soon after candidate Donald Trump became the Republican nominee, Prime Minister Orbán expressed support for his security plan as something that would be “a wise approach for Europe.” Specifically, he was referring to a strong intelligence service, beefed up border protection and the end of “democracy export” – points that the then-nominee had proposed in the US. These, according to the Orbán Government, would have been the very basic, practical measures that Europe should have set up to respond to the millions illegally crossing Europe’s outer borders over the past couple of years. It would have been the sensible thing to do, but it never happened. Why? Because those who dared to propose such a solution were bullied by opponents who pushed ideologically driven responses.

That’s how the “liberal non-democracy” works. “The problem with [ideologically-driven thinking],” said Prime Minister Orbán, is that it gives an answer to the question before facts are considered.” When it turns out that those ideologically-driven solutions don’t work, proponents and sympathetic media try to suppress the facts. Thus, like in the film The Matrix, an alternate “liberal” reality is born and it claims to replace facts and real-life experience. If you dare to reject the Matrix, it is not evil robots you face, but the mainstream elite, media and non-elected opinion leaders, the so-called “civic organizations” without any real base of public support who mock their opponents into submission. If you take a hard line on strong borders for Europe to defend the freedoms of the Schengen Area, then you must be a xenophobe.

Examples? We have unelected bureaucrats in European institutions who oppose the democratically elected representatives of EU members in political power games; treaties signed against the will of the people; unelected NGOs, without any popular support, pushing an ideological agenda and attempting to shape important decisions according to their – and their funders’ – ideological vision; media coordinating biased, politically motivated attacks against democratically elected governments. Today’s President of the European Commission Jean Claude Juncker has criticized European political leaders for “listening to their own people too much.” Stop and think about that for a moment.

The good news is that these powers, even combined, seem much less effective these days. "We are living in the days where what we call liberal non-democracy - in which we lived for the past 20 years - ends, and we can return to real democracy," Prime Minister Orbán said two days after the results of the US elections became clear, adding that “Western civilization appears to successfully break free from ideological confines.”

Whatever happens in the United States affects the rest of the free world. Fortunately, it seems that democracy and free will have overcome the liberal Matrix. The voices and interests of the people, we hope, will take priority over ideologically driven thinking. Here’s to a return to common sense!