The Riddle That Isn't

Scripps-Howard News Service 4.23.02
Balint Vazsonyi

Having written about Hungary some six weeks ago - in response to an irresponsible article in the Washington Post - my intention was not to do so again for some time. Surprisingly, though, the parliamentary elections (completed last Sunday) became the subject of innumerable articles in the major European journals, and generated an almost daily commentary in the New York Times.

Over many years, I have been making the most strenuous efforts to explain the socialist mind set to fellow-Americans, producing predictably little headway. My Alabama-born wife of 42 years has served as a daily reminder of the light years that separate standard American thinking from that mind set, and thus of the almost impossible task I had set myself.

Can I be blamed, then, if I grab every opportunity that comes my way?

At issue in Hungary was the re-election of the center-right coalition that has governed during the past four years, versus a return of the remodeled Communist Party, now called Socialist. Among the countless other parties on the fringes, one was on what people call the "far right" (a misnomer), with openly antisemitic overtones. The Hungarian electorate - 72% of whom turned out to vote in both rounds - gave so few votes to the antisemitic party in the first round, they did not even qualify for a single seat in Parliament.

Nonetheless, the leading dailies of France and Germany have been crying wolf every day. Hungary's socialists, naturally, made every effort to paint their opponents - the current government - as being engaged in "secret negotiations with the far right party." Why they would do so with an entity brushed off the table like a dead fly by the electorate, was not explained. Never mind. Hungary's prime minister, the government, by implication the entire country was accused daily of antisemitic tendencies.

Now, it is these very same newspapers of world reputation that have pledged unqualified support for the Palestinian cause which, as honest people will not dispute, is the disappearance of Israel from the map. These very same newspapers also report the return of open antisemitism as socially acceptable once again in Germany and in France, as well as daily incidents of atrocities against Jews and Jewish landmarks. Demonstrations featuring little boys and girls packed with mock sticks of dynamite, wearing suicide-bomber outfits, are becoming standard in these countries.

Let us understand the proposition clearly. The same newspapers that display an openly anti-Israeli stance, and report all manifestations of antisemitism with equanimity, have been having conniption fits about the "antisemitic peril" in Hungary where no one has demonstrated against Israel, no one has harmed a synagogue or a Jewish cemetery, and the only party guilty of verbal transgressions has been retired from public life.

As proposed above, I am simply seizing an opportunity to demonstrate the socialist mind set. It is very simple, especially if we allow ourselves to realize that the first tenet of socialism is to view America as the enemy. Why is that the first tenet? Because every aspect of America's existence gives all other socialist tenets the lie.

Yes, the socialist mind set is very simple: The socialist cause always trumps all others.

In the Middle East, the socialist cause is with the Palestinians because they are anti-American. In Hungary, the socialist cause is for The Party to return to power. Advocating both results in contradictions? Facts, truth - these are bourgeois hang-ups. The socialist cause trumps everything.

Socialist thought does not come from Russia, as is fashionable to believe - it comes from France and Germany. Much of what confuses us in their responses to various situations will become clear and logical if we realize all of the foregoing. It will also be possible to anticipate their responses with greater accuracy.

But the real pay-off will occur on the day when we accept that, as we get nearer to the present time, we have had an increasing number of Americans falling prey to the socialist mind set - even in Congress.

"What?" I hear you say. "Socialists in the Congress of the United States?"

Dozens, dear reader, dozens. And they make no secret of it. Although of late it has been refurbished and the address altered, they have their own web site. They call themselves the "Progressive Caucus," until recently an arm of the Democratic Socialists of America, itself an arm of the Socialist International. The Progressive Caucus may be a separate entity now, but the details of its program, as advertised on the web site (www.dsausa.org/pc/pc.caucus.html), are indistinguishable from that of the Socialist International.

To their credit, they make no secret of it. Only the rest of us prefer not to believe it.

We had better believe it. And we had better remember: the socialist cause trumps everything.