Friday, February 19, 2010

Send us your poor, your long as they are registered voters

In American political circles, soccer moms, security moms, and hockey moms are the desired demografics. In Hungarian political circles, pensioners are the holy grail of politicians.

'Pensioners,' a combination of retirees and workers on permanent disability (there are a lot more of the latter than you would assume...), are similar to American Senior Citizens in their high voter participation habits and loyal allegiance to one party. For the last twenty years, or since the fall of Communism, their allegiance has remained with the Socialist Party (MSzP). The same politicians who were mid-level party bosses under Communism are now in charge of the Socialist Party, and they have been in power for the last six years.

The last six years have not been kind on the Hungarian populace. The Socialists ran the budding free market economy into the ground, and then lied about it. A $27 billion bailout was required, but still, the Socialists were kept in office. At this point, with Hungarian arch-rival Slovakia already on the Euro, Hungarians are starting to wake-up and realize that they are no longer the poster child for post-Communist states.

Hence, the Socialists, as I mentioned previously, are about to completely lose power. The one thing that could prevent this? A massive turnout of pensioners voting in favor of the Socialists. And how to ensure this happens? Thinly veiled threats, like the one above. A picture of a traditional sheepskin cap representing a male pensioner and a scarf for a female pensioner with the headline "We will guarantee the safety of the monthly pensioner's check." It continues

The world economic crisis drastically reduced state revenues. So that the pensioner's monthly check does not come into danger, the New Socialist government has assured the check has a solid base. We introduced a new premium on January 1st, which has increased monthly checks an average of 4.1%, and we will continue to make cost of living corrections to the program, too. The political left will not allow the needy elderly's subsistence to come into danger, even in times of crisis.

And if you vote for the other side, good riddance and good luck.

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