The growth of the extreme right in Hungary

Political Capital Institute, a Hungarian think tank, came out with a new index that the authors call the DEREX Index that is supposed to measure societal acceptance of right-wing extremism. The findings were reported today in HVG. The researchers compared 32 countries; they found that in Turkey, Ukraine, Bulgaria, and Hungary the impulses toward the acceptance of right-wing extremism are the strongest. In Hungary, for example, in six years the percentage of potential extreme right-wing voters has more than doubled from 10% to 21%. (…) Moreover, there is a big difference between the Western and the Eastern European varieties of extremism. In the West right-wing extremism is directed against immigration and foreigners and isn’t coupled with a general rejection of the whole democratic regime as it is in Hungary. In Eastern Europe the anti-Roma prejudice is coupled with a distrust of the regime itself and with a general dissatisfaction with life in general. And, Political Capital adds, that combination can threaten the very stability of the regime. Let’s look at some examples. In Ukraine in two years, between 2005 and 2007, anti-regime feeling grew from 25% to 51% among the adult population. In Hungary between 2003 and 2009 dissatisfaction quadrupled: from 12% to 46%. Political Capital measured all sorts of indicators: lack of trust in institutions, anti-elite feelings, economic nationalism, xenophobia, and aggressive nationalism. These are all dangerous components of instability and this danger is especially present in Eastern Europe, most notably in Ukraine, Hungary, and Bulgaria, in addition to Israel and Turkey. In these countries Political Capital estimates that 20-30% of the population is inclined to support the extreme right.

viaHungarian Spectrum: The growth of the extreme right in Hungary."