One of these things is not like the other

A rough inventory of July’s contribution to the global collapse of democracy would include Turkey’s show trial of leading journalists from Cumhuriyet, a major newspaper; Vladimir Putin’s ban on the virtual private networks used by democracy activists to evade censorship; Apple’s decision to pull the selfsame technology from its Chinese app store.

Then there is Hungary’s government-funded poster campaign depicting opposition parties and NGOs as puppets of Jewish billionaire George Soros; Poland’s evisceration of judicial independence and the presidential veto that stopped it. Plus Venezuela’s constituent assembly poll, boycotted by more than half the population amid incipient civil war.

Overshadowing all this is a three-cornered US constitutional face-off between Trump (accused of links with Russia), his attorney general (who barred himself from investigating the Russian links) and the special prosecutor who is investigating Trump, whom Trump is trying to sack.

Let’s be brutal: democracy is dying.

One of those is really quite different – and yes, it’s the one about Trump. He may be many of the things that people accuse him of. But he’s not in fact anti-democratic.

17 thoughts on “One of these things is not like the other”

  1. Is this: ‘Hungary’s government-funded poster campaign depicting opposition parties and NGOs as puppets of Jewish billionaire George Soros’?

    Leaving aside the unpleasant Jewish reference (hello Dave), Hungary’s opposition parties and NGOs might well be puppets of Soros, mightn’t they?

  2. Interested +1

    Isn’t Orban (democratically elected) simply standing up for Hungary against the Open Borders’ fanatics (bankrolled by Soros) whose policies threaten and weaken that democracy? Or am I confused.

  3. Bloke in North Dorset

    The latter of those examples shows that democracy is alive and well in the USA and working in the way the Founding Fathers envisaged.

  4. They’ve been looking for Trump’s links with Russia for a year now and zilch.
    Poland’s Government was democratically elected. Whether it is the current Govt. or it’s predecessor bending the rules is open to dispute.
    Soros has his fingers in many pies, but has never been noticeably helpful to democracy.
    China has never been a democracy.
    Russia has only ever been nominally so.
    That leaves Turkey, which has been ruled by a military dictatorship half the time.
    So really, there’s about the same amount of democracy there ever was.

  5. Anne Applebaum had a column in the NYT the other day criticizing the Polish leader. It was left to Twitter to point out that her husband had lost an election to this guy, and had to flee the country amid corruption charges.

  6. “One of those is really quite different – and yes, it’s the one about Trump. He may be many of the things that people accuse him of. But he’s not in fact anti-democratic.”

    I think more than one. I don’t know about Poland, but in Hungary Orban is definitely a target for anti democratic forces in the country (i.e. those who are pro free movement including Soros and the EU). Orban is actually trying to do what the Hungarian people want him to do, which is unusual.

  7. Pretty blatant the way this article throws together completely unrelated things and distorts the truth. Yuk

  8. “It is no accident that the “enemies of the people” meme is doing the rounds: Orbán uses it against the billionaire George Soros, Trump uses it against the liberal press, China used it to jail the poet Liu Xiaobo and keep him in prison until his death.”

    Lol at the first two of these examples being anything like the last one

  9. Also Apple. Which is a private company. And obeying the law in China. Lefties aren’t keen on private companies avoiding or evading what they like to think is the law?

    Or is that just on tax, pay, non-employee workers’ rights etc, etc, etc?

  10. SE,

    “Also Apple. Which is a private company. And obeying the law in China. Lefties aren’t keen on private companies avoiding or evading what they like to think is the law?”

    Despite hating Apple, I agree. I’m pretty sure the Android store does the same thing in China.

    The benefit of Android is that you can bypass the walled garden. You just have to find somewhere out there with an APK for the app (the Chinese firewall is pretty leaky) and sideload it.

  11. They left out the Guardian and other Remainers’ continued attempts to ignore the Brexit vote. I presume they left it out for reasons of space.

  12. The Guardian cares about democracy. How refreshing!

    The Guardian talks about democracy, not because they care, but because YOU do. Alinsky taught the Left to use the language of their opposition, which is all this is.

    The haranguing of Trump, the duly elected president, makes it obvious.

  13. I’m sure I have seen articles in the Guardian calling for the suspension (i.e. abolition) of democracy to fight climate change and to scupper Brexit.

  14. @ Interested

    The Hungarian posters do not make an unpleasant Jewish reference. They don’t mention Soros’ being Jewish at all. Just a pic and a slogan asking people not to let him have the last laugh.

    This Jew isn’t offended.

  15. Synp – ta. I hadn’t seen the posters but have now clicked through. As you say, the only reference to Soros’ Jewishness is by people – inc Paul Mason and the Guardian – who claim with no apparent evidence that the posters are anti Semitic.

    So hello Dave again, I guess!

  16. (ie there is an unpleasant Jewish reference – just by Paul Mason, not the Hungarian government!)

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