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“I'm a devoted 'Gyurcsányist'” – interview with Mr. István Vágó

Viewers have deemed the former 'quiz king' to be the perfect example of the type of 'the scientist above all' for decades; i.e. somebody who is not interested in narrow-minded animosities of everyday life. Following his dismissal from TV2, Mr. Vágó unmasked himself, and considers it to be a great success of his life that now he can express his opinion in television programs together with the well–known Hungarian political scientist and researcher Mr. József Debreczeni and others. Hereby we kindly share with you a part of Index.hu's interview with Mr. Vágó.

How did your career start out at ATV?
I am not working for ATV. They asked me whether I wanted to come and express my opinion on various public affairs, and I said, “Oh yeah, sure”.
Who invited you to join the program?
One of my close friends, Mr. Zsolt Gréczy (host of the program called “Demokraták” ['Democrats']). I belong to the hard core of the Hungarian Democratic Charter (in Hungarian: 'Magyar Demokratikus Charta') and have to admit that I also am a devoted “Gyurcsányist”. I think that the former prime minister's ousting was absolutely unfair, given that he is a very apt and truly democratic Hungarian politician who fell victim to a premeditated and double – both internal and external – character killing. Zsolt is aware of this conviction of mine, and it was him who invited me to the program. This is a political “coming out” on my part because while working for commercial TV stations, it was very hard for me to discern what I was thinking about political questions and public affairs in general.

What was the single most important factor that attracted you to the program?
I think the honor of being able to sit next to Mr. József Debreczeni, Mr. Szabolcs Kerék-Bárczy and the other [well–known Hungarian political scientists]. The fact that Mr. József Debreczeni – who anticipated like a prophet what here and now happens in Hungary – gives me the honor of sitting next to me in a television program – well, this is a great success in my life.

What disturbs you most in Hungary today?
That politicians of Fidesz are also very much aware when they tell lies to the people, in my opinion. For example they tell us that raising taxes is no austerity. Or when they curb the powers of the Constitutional Court, and tell us that they actually enlarge them. When they pass a media law, which causes journalists to exercise political self-censorship, and they tell us that this media law actually serves the harmonic mental and psychological development of our children. How dare they think that we are stupid? Why do they tell lies to all the people? And why is it that they see a deadly enemy in anyone who does not support their stance? What they are committing against Mr. Gyurcsány is a joke – more exactly, it's not a joke at all! How can a party's chief mission be the total annihilation of the other political side? The only thing I can see is that all of their actions are aimed at annihilating and liquidating us.
For example, what's the case of Klubrádió [a private, left-leaning radio channel] all about? Whatever I listen to, it is only music flowing from all the radio channels in Hungary today and, in spite of that, decision-makers call for a proposal to establish a brand new music radio channel (instead of one dealing with public affairs)! That's the absolute greatest cynicism I've ever seen! And they do all this like nothing unusual has happened. Instead, they should tell it outright that “Well, Klubrádió is not broadcasting what we like (both literally and metaphorically), so, we are going to shut this radio channel down”. Why can’t they just do it all in a straightforward manner?

What do you think will be the end result of your political coming-out?
If you mean whether I will ever be a candidate for MP of any political party in Hungary, then I have to tell you that it's not likely given that I am not an expert in any field of public policy; what's more, I would not like to see that any of my former colleagues, e.g. Mr. István Pálffy, says about me the same things that I am now saying about him: that he is not on the right course since he has been acting as a media politician. But who knows what might happen until the following general elections – whenever they will be held? [Note: the next general elections in Hungary are due in 2014]  So, we should talk about that issue sometime later as well.

For decades, you have been displaying yourself as an omniscient person who is able to observe 'worldly affairs' from the sky above. Don't you care about what your viewers will think of you now that you are in politics?
Not at all! But my earlier role of a kind-hearted teacher like in the TV program “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?” has come to an end once and for all, given that I had to act as a cruel, sadistic interrogator in that program. Back then I already had to get used to the idea that some of my earlier viewers would turn away from me. Of course, the world of politics is a little bit different. However, I really try to represent the most decent and rationalistic stance that fits into the framework of my political and other ideals, and I do think that I do not have to please those people who judge me for doing this. For example I now encourage all Nazis to hate me, because not only does it not hurt me (fortunately!), but it's also an honor for me.
http://index.hu/kultur/media/2011/10/23/vago_gyurcsanyista_vagyok/

Last Updated on Friday, 30 August 2013 09:11

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