Saturday, June 12, 2021

Obama: Poland and Hungary are now “essentially authoritarian”

@Obama - I am afraid always were, but glad you realized what truly went on and goes on. Poland is whichever way wind blows money from - never ever was any real political option 

Poland and Hungary are now “authoritarian”, says Barack Obama, who cited the two countries as warnings to Americans of how “democracy can die at the ballot box”. In response, the Polish government has accused him of “lacking knowledge” about the situation in the country and invited him to visit.

In an interview for CNN, Obama told Anderson Cooper that “all of us as citizens have to recognise that the path towards an undemocratic America is not going to happen in just one day; it happens in a series of steps”.

“And when you look at what’s happened in places like Hungary and in Poland – that obviously did not have the same democratic traditions that we did, they weren’t as deeply rooted – and yet, as recently as ten years ago were functioning democracies, and now essentially have become authoritarian,” he continued.

Under their current populist national-conservative governments, both Poland and Hungary have declined dramatically in international rankings of democracy. They are accused of violating the rule of law, undermining judicial independence and seeking to bring the media under greater government control.

In its latest Nations in Transit report, Freedom House found that Poland has recorded the biggest decline in democracy over five years among 29 countries in Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Hungary was in second place. The US-based NGO no longer classifies either country as a full democracy.

Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem), which produces the largest global dataset on democracy, earlier this year identified Poland as the world’s “most autocratising country” of the last decade, followed again by Hungary.

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