||Re: Health insurance (mind)
|| 20 sor
|| 38 sor
||Re: Canada and 1956 (mind)
|| 122 sor
||Re: Soros wrongdoings---a short list (mind)
|| 9 sor
||Where are the facts? (mind)
|| 100 sor
||About Soros. (mind)
|| 25 sor
||Fwd: The Hungary Report 1.40 Part II (mind)
|| 441 sor
||Hungarian-Sumerian Connections (mind)
|| 9 sor
||Hungary Report? (mind)
|| 16 sor
||Re: Soros wrongdoings---a short list (mind)
|| 12 sor
||Re: WW? (mind)
|| 12 sor
||Re: WW? (mind)
|| 19 sor
||Re: Health insurance (mind)
|| 34 sor
||Re: Labor Unions (Formerly Health insurance) (mind)
|| 36 sor
||Re: Soros wrongdoings---a short list (mind)
|| 46 sor
||Re: Where are the facts? (mind)
|| 31 sor
|+ - ||Re: Health insurance (mind)
At 10:38 PM 3/5/96 -0500, Gabor D. Farkas, in a response to Eva Durant, wrote:
>They could not afford them then, they cannot afford them now. What solution
>do you suggest? Please, no generalities but concrete, realistic solutions,
This is a valid question, Gabor. I'll be interested in Eva Durant's
response. At least your answer, from this, and other posts, is quite clear.
What you're saying is that you can afford medical care and screw those who
can't. It's time to wean Hungarians off the state (satan). Right?
If I'm wrong, then please give your views on the future of medical care in
Hungary. What is your "concrete" and "realistic" message to poorer
Hungarians who need medical care and can't afford it?
You can express yourself quite clearly and openly. Look at this as only a
simulation since poorer Hungarians have experienced a few difficulties
accessing the internet. Tell us what you think.
|+ - ||WW? (mind)
S. Stowe wrote:
>It's all based on what's important to you, individually and collectively.
>Voluntarily rounding up one's Jewish population for transshipment to
>foreign death camps comes under the heading of an immoral act in my book.
So does in mine. The only problem that we do not talk about this, at least
not me. I thought our subject is what Hungary (or a small country) could
have (or should not have) done to avoid or lesser its later problems. Sure
it is a shame on our former leadership, goverment and also on lots of peoples
to give their name and help to eliminate a great part of the hungarian jews,
but this did not count too much in Jalta or Potsdam. Maybe Horthy would have
got such remarks 'however he did not let to eliminate the hungarian jews' or
'he tried to defend the jewish population of his country' in some history book,
but that is all. Not if such act should be done for having better reputation,
but for humanitarian reasons.
Furthermore, we should not forget about that Horthy saved the jewish population
of Budapest from the deportation and Hungary was the safest place for jews in
East Europe untill 1943-44. At least as I know. This might alter that
'voluntarily rounding..' a little bit.
>Had Hungary worried a bit more about moral considerations in
>its governmental policy at several critical points in the earlier part of
>this century it might have avoided some of the tragedy that ultimately
What are these critical points? And how could we avoid that 'ultimate tragedy'?
Please, give some detail, not just general statements!
>Your whole approach to this question, typical of many
>ultranationalists, reminds me of that old saw about the problem with the
>Bourbon dynasty in France -- that they could neither forget the past nor
>learn from it.
As your approach reminds me a little child who read too much tale about
Santa Claus and looking for him on the sky at Christmas time.
|+ - ||Re: Canada and 1956 (mind)
=46ollowing the death of Stalin in 1953 a political thaw began in Eastern
Europe. After Imre Nagy, a reform-communist, introduced a "New Course" in
Hungary with the approval of Moscow, the intellectuals led a "revolt of the
mind" for greater freedom. Most college students followed them
enthusiastically. Although the students were the ones who started the
Hungarian revolution, few participated in the actual fighting in October
1956. Nevertheless, the defeat of the revolution gave the students cause to
fear retribution or, in particular, expulsion from their university.
Hungary's western borders were left unguarded or lightly-patrolled for
months, and the children of the former "restricted classes" along with
those students who participated in the revolution together with other
students who rejected the totalitarian society saw an opportunity for
freedom and equal opportunity.
From November 1956 onward a large number of Hungarian students
began to arrive in Austria with other refugees. Steps were taken
immediately to accomodate the situation. The Coordinating Committee for
International Student Relief was established in Vienna to facilitate the
student refugees. Three student bodies founded the C.C.I.S.R.: the World
University Student Service (W.U.S., Geneva), the coordinating Secretariat
of the National Union of Students and the Austrian National Union of
Students (Osterreichische Hochsch=FClerschaft). The International Red Cross,
the Ministry of the Interior and the Austrian branch of Caritas, the
International Confederation of Catholic Organizations for Charitable and
Social Action, provided funds for the students.
The largest group of the university population came from Sopron, a
Hungarian town located near the Austrian border. On November 4 about 450
members from the staff and students of the University of Sopron, of whom
220 were forestry students, crossed to Austria. A second group of Soproners
also escaped from Hungary in late November. The latter group, frequently
referred to as the Technical Group, in the correspondence of Canadian
immigration officials, consisted of students and professors from the
mining, geophysics, oil engineering and geodesy faculties.
About eighty students from the Technical Group had been members of
the revolutionary militia during the uprising. They carried fire arms with
them when they crossed the border to Austria. As a result, the authorities
arrested and interned them at the Klosterneuburg military camp. They were
later released. The unarmed members of the Technical Group were sent to a
refugee camp in Judenau, Austria. Meanwhile, the Austrian Minister of the
Interior and the Minister of Education settled the forestry students and
their professors along with their families either in Strobl am Wolfgangsee
or St. Wolfgang. They soon attended classes at the college of Ferienhort
on Lake Wolfgang. From Judenau, the technical students contacted Dean
Kalman Roller of the Sopron Forestry Group who quickly arranged their
transfer to Lake Ferinhort. Eventually, a number of Sopron students who
crossed the Austro-Hungarian border at a later date, also found their way
Table No. 1.
Sopron Forestry Faculty and Student Dispersion after 1956
remained in arrived
returned from Austria went
Sopron to Austria to Sopron to Canada elsewhere
Heads of Departments 16 8 3 4 1
Other faculty 49 21 4 10 7
Total faculty members 65 29 7 14 8
Students 390 356 60 200 70
GRAND TOTAL 455 385 67 214 78
The professors and the students stayed in contact with their
university in Sopron. Some smuggled textbooks across the border. By late
November the two Sopron groups numbered 604. By this date personal,
political and professional differences had shattered the unity of the
Soproners. On November 26 at a meeting held at Ferienhort, Austria, they
decided to separate into three faculties. Each faculty was to elect its own
leader whose main task was to find a host country. Letters were sent to
heads of state, ministers of education and well-known educational
institutions. Dean Roller wrote about the result of the many requests:
England was the first to reply, sending regrets that neither financial nor
physical resources could be assured in Great Britain for a unit so large
(there were about 300 of us). Italy offered us an ancient castle where the
School of Forestry could continue educational activities, eventually with
its own teaching staff, but financial provisions could not be assured.
=46urthermore, the students could not expect to be employed in Italy after
graduation since Italy had a surplus of forest engineers. From West Germany
came word that a West Berlin university would be willing to accept us as
individuals -- professors and students -- but employment again could not be
assured. The University of Vienna made it clear that the operation of
Sopron University in Austria was not desirable and that the Sopron diploma
would not be honoured by the Austrian forest industry. Similar answers were
received from others countries...
German-speaking countries proved attractive to the refugee
students. Few of the students spoke German but these countries offered
generous scholarships, their culture was not unfamiliar and they were
relatively close to Hungary. In Germany there were more scholarships
available than there were applicants. Twelve-hundred state and 156 Ford
scholarships were made available. Germany was familiar with the problem of
refugees due to this steady flow from East Germany. A mechanism for their
reception had long since been established. The German representative at the
United Nations in Geneva tried to convince his American and Australian
counterparts about the greater difficulties refugee intellectuals face than
native students. In Austria 534 scholarships were offered to the 705
registered students by Free Europe, the Maltese Cross, the Austrian
National Committee and religious aid organizations, including 80 by the
Rockefeller Foundation. A number of other European countries also treated
the Hungarian refugee students generously but for various cultural or
economic reasons few students took advantage of the opportunities
presented. In Switzerland the Studenthilfe aided all the refugee students
while the Ford Foundation and Free Europe provided a number of
scholarships. Denmark offered scholarships to their 39 Hungarian
student-refugees. In Holland the Universiter Asezl funds assured
scholarships for five years for all the 117 applicants. Norway offered
financial support up to January 1, 1958. After that date interest-free
loans were made available to be repaid after completion of studies. The
Swedish government provided scholarships until June 30, 1958 for 350
Hungarian students who wanted to study in Sweden. After 1958 interest-free
state loans were offered.
Peter I. Hidas
Department Of Russian and Slavic Studies
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
|+ - ||Re: Soros wrongdoings---a short list (mind)
Whatever Mr Odor says, the simple fact remains that many Hungarians
resent Soros "helping" with the finances of the country straight and simply
because he is Jewish. No if`s and but`s. That`s the bottom line. I`m almost
certain that he must have some kind of a hinden agenda (it has been said that
that the worst Jew - in terms of being crafty - is a Hungarian one ;-)
|+ - ||Where are the facts? (mind)
Tibor Odor writes on the alleged "wrongdoings" of George Soros:
>1. Soros very negative role under the Blocad of Taxi Drivers.
> His anti-hungarian views were disclosed in the Hungarian TV
> in an interview with him. He said very controversial things
> about hungarianness and the National Anathem which hurt the
> vast majority of the Nation on either side of the Blocad.
Exactly what did Mr. Soros say, and when did he say it? Why was it
construed to be anti-Hungarian? By the way, is there freedom of speech
in Hungary, or is speech only free if it agrees with someone's political
>2. He supports journals and newspapers, Magyar Narancs, Beszelo and other
> garbages which otherwise cannot survive on the market.
How one spends one's own resources should be up to one's predilections.
Isn't there freedom of press in Hungary?
>2'. He supports HIX. :-)
That is his priviledge.
>3. He supports people and views which are extremely harmful for the
> society. For example he strongly supports the idea of free distribution
> of hard drugs (not only marijuana, but LSDand maybe cocain).
> He supports abortion too.
Who decides what is harmful or beneficial for society? Opinions can differ.
Can you support his statement on drugs? Again, a lot of people support the
notion of free accessibility of drugs. For example, the mayor of Baltimore,
an African-American, and who was handsomely reelected recently, also
supports the decriminalization of drugs. Nobody suggests that he is
guilty of anything, except maybe common sense, for voicing his opinion.
>4. He is completely against the Hungarian nation. He hates everything
> which is made or done by ethnic hungarians. (Remember for the Anathem
> issue.)He supports the enemies
> of the nation. (He gave money to Corneliu Vadim Tudor and his daughter,
> and as far as I know he gave money to Gheorghiu Funar too.)
Can you substantiate these opinions? When did he give money to Funar and
company? Considering the attacks on Soros by the Romanians, this sounds
> He supports fomer members of the AVH. His closest
Who are these AVH members?
>6. The National Debt is his favorite issue. He wanted to buy the Hungarian
> National Debt and using his influence he wanted to introduce an "open"
> system. The "extremist" and "racist" Jozsef Antall disclosed these facts.
> Now he wants something, which seems to be even worst than his original
What did Jozsef Antall disclose, and where and when did he disclose it?
An open society is something that most civilized people try to achieve.
>7. He tried to undermine the Hungarian bank system trying to occupy
> OTP (the largest and most important bank in Hungary) by a plot.
> (OTP is under moderate, not anti-hungarian communist rule. It is very
> painful for the liberal anti-hungarian extremists who are the best
> friends of Soros.)
How did he try to occupy OTP? Who are these "anti-Hungarian" extremists?
>As I suggested in my previous mail on this issue, (Subject: Answer to
>the open letter of Csaba Zoltani) it is possible that a jury do not
>find these facts completely provable by its standards. But in politics
>I think it is enough that they are not refutable. We cannot prove
>everything without doubt, because using a complicated strategy one can
>generate so complicated cases which is not possible to uncover in 100 years
>while we do not have 100 days to take the anaviodable actions.
I'm afraid, Dr. Odor, until and unless you supply the facts to back up
your speculations, you do not have a case. What you have cited are at best
anecdotal. In a way that is regretable. Diversity of opinion based on hard
facts contributes to the enlightenment of all. I will close with a small
section of an essay which recently appeared on the Op-Ed page of the NYT
written by Misha Glenny under the heading "The Price of Peace in Bosnia."
"...The latest manifestation of this deal with the devils has been the
disgraceful ruling by Serbia's Supreme Court to allow the Government
to shut down the Soros Yugoslavia Foundation in Belgrade. The court cited
a legal technicality, but this cannot disguise the cynical political
maneuvering of the Serbian President, Slobodan Milosevic, who is behind the
The foundation has performed heroic work under exceptionally difficult
conditions. Above all, it has alleviated the suffering of Serb, Muslim,
Hungarian and Albanian citizens, many of them refugees, through its
humanitarian work. These people will be the principle victims of the
court's decision, and considerable pressure should be applied on the
Serbian Government to reverse it.
CSABA K ZOLTANI
|+ - ||About Soros. (mind)
Tibor Odor wrote:
>But you simply ignored the strong points in my argument. There is a strong
>and easily verifyable statement about the text written to the check mentioned
>in my previous writing on this issue. You wants facts---naturally,
>you think, you have only the right to decide what is a fact.
>I think, this question is very simple. You have to go to the Szabo Ervin
>and to ask a check for the payment of the TOEFL exame. That is all.
The story about these checks is true (I guess they call them voucher or
something like that). I paid my TOEFL exam with this check. I had to pay
the amount in hungarian currency and enclose this voucher to my application.
But I am sorry I do not understand how does this prove your points? Even if
Soros does some tax manipulation with these checks it still does not prove
the other points.
I also have to mention here, that I had a very good experience with the
Soros Foundation. I could go to Canada by the IAESTE three years ago.
Unfortunatelly I had to pay the travel expenses, which is quite painful
for a simple student in Hungary. Finally I ended at the Soros Foundation
and got the necessery money within a week. And I am neither Jewish nor has
connection to the SZDSZ.
|+ - ||Fwd: The Hungary Report 1.40 Part II (mind)
I don't know how many of you have read the article by John Horvath in
the latest issue of the Hungary Report 1.40. Mr. Horvath brings up
very serious criminal charges of fraud in Hungary, whose victims are,
among others, young American teachers.
However, before we over-react and potentially cause major damage to
US-Hungarian cultural and educational exchange programs, I wonder if
Mr. Horvath would be kind enough to elaborate on his charges with
specifics. Also, I wonder if there are any other readers of this group
who had similar experiences while teaching in Hungary?
It seems to me that if specific cases of fraud have occured, there must
be police reports or at least written complaints to the Hungarian
Ministry of Education. What was their response to these specific
charges? Have any of the teachers victimized received subsequent
Accusing someone of a crime is a serious matter. So is comitting a
Regards from New York,
PS: here is the article, in case you missed it:
Learning to Discriminate
by John Horvath
Copyright (c) 1996
It has been frequently said that experience is the worst kind of
teacher because it gives the test first and the lesson afterward.
the majority of foreigners working in Hungary as guest teachers,
saying has more than just a ring of truth to it.
The Hungarian higher education system is rife with corruption,
especially in the area of foreign language teaching. Money that has
been set aside to pay for guest teachers is repeatedly and
unashamedly squandered by institutions -- frequently going into the
pockets of department heads, vice-principals, and principals. What
makes the situation different from most corruption cases is that it
is tacitly accepted at all levels of the educational system --
up to the Ministry of Education. Furthermore, it sends a message
if you are a foreigner who is not aware of your own rights then you
deserve to have you rights trampled on and be discriminated
Hence, the "guest" aspect of foreign teachers working in Hungary is
ironic in more ways than one.
For several years now the Ministry of Education has been running
has been termed the "guest teacher program". A guest teacher is a
teacher from a foreign country working in Hungary on a contractual
basis and supported in one way or another by the Ministry of
Education. Higher educational establishments have an option to hire
guest teachers through the Ministry of Education for a teaching
assignment based on the Ministry's program.
The main objective of the program is to assist in the training of
language teachers at universities, upper primary teacher training
colleges, lower primary teacher training colleges, and kindergarten
teacher training colleges. According to the Ministry, "there is a
great demand for improving language teaching in colleges
in technology, economics and the arts." As far as the Ministry is
concerned, foreign teachers should be mainly involved in the
of methodology, rhetoric, linguistics, language development, and
special subjects such as civilization courses. In addition to this,
the Ministry also considers it among the duties of guest teachers
be involved in the organization of language development courses,
control of (and assistance in) teaching practice, as well as help
materials development and the compilation of tests.
In short, guest teachers can be considered as gifts to colleges and
universities. The Ministry of Education even has a special budget
aside for the program. Thus, at the beginning of each academic year
(as far as the Ministry sees it, a guest teacher is employed from
beginning of September to the end of August) HUF 1 million for each
guest teacher employed is forwarded to the host institution. From
this money, the expenses of a guest teacher is fully covered: wages
for an entire year (12 months); a Christmas bonus (known as the
month salary); and living expenses, also known as "flat money".
Though the Ministry of Education has all the rules and regulations
concerning the employment of guest teachers freely available upon
request, almost none of the guest teachers presently employed are
aware of the existence of these rules and regulations, or even what
they're about. Subsequently, host institutions have been taking
advantage of this situation and have thus been milking the program
for all it's worth. There are many ways in which institutions have
been short-changing foreigners teaching in Hungary. The most common
has been through shortened work contracts, usually for a period of
only 9-10 months instead of the full year. Not realizing that money
has been provided to pay for their summer holidays, the vast
of guest teachers have unhesitatingly signed such contracts.
Most of the time teachers work without a clear contract. At
University for example guest teachers signed two contracts, one
the university and the other with the department, of which one
frequently conflicted or contradicted the other. In addition to
it is not uncommon for foreign teachers to find out that they end
getting less than what was actually promised. For instance, at
Miskolc University, teachers were promised HUF 1,500 per hour to
teach post-graduate courses only to find out that in the end they
were getting only HUF 1,200 per hour.
Throughout Hungary guest teachers are not informed about working
regulations or their rights. In some cases, teachers have been
employed and not informed about their work visas, only to find out
afterward that they couldn't get paid for work already done and
subsequently fired -- this despite the fact that the Ministry makes
it very clear in its program guidelines that "the work permit has
be arranged by the host institute." Likewise, it is the
responsibility of colleges and universities to arrange other
documents necessary for a foreign teacher's stay in Hungary, such
residence permits and the National Health Service cards -- not only
for guest teachers but their families as well.
Not only are foreign teachers working in Hungary not aware of their
rights, but they are uninformed about how much money schools
in support of their position. Many do not know, for instance, about
the flat money. Although the money can't be paid directly to a
teacher, a flat allowance of HUF 40,000 for teachers in Budapest
30,000 for those elsewhere) is nevertheless available to pay for
their housing costs. Since salaries are ridiculously low (HUF
per month, gross), this disproportionate allowance helps to make up
for the low pay.
Since this sum of money from the flat allowance is quite
-- almost half a million forints per year for each guest teacher --
abuse is, not surprisingly, widespread. Many teachers are put up in
teachers hostel, pay for their own lodgings (without little or no
financial support), or are even housed at the college or university
itself. In a lot of places, employees at the host institution make
business of this practice by providing accommodation to guest
teachers, who in turn take this as a token of generosity. The flat
money, meanwhile, disappears in the bowels of the school's
administration, some of it usually winding up in the pockets of
of the administrators.
Yet it's not only foreigners who are frequently fooled, but the
Ministry of Education itself. In some higher education
money for guest teachers are procured from the program even when no
guest teachers exist for the post. In the same way, guest teachers
are hired even when there are no classes to teach. Since money from
the program is transferred in one block sum at the beginning of the
academic year, the interest earned on the amount (approximately 30%
p.a.) still makes it a worthwhile venture.
WAYS AND MEANS
There are many creative ways in which schools pursue and justify
their fraudulent activities. First and foremost, there is simply no
information. When information is forthcoming, it is often very
confusing and unreliable. Still, for those with an inkling to what
going on, they are subsequently sent on a bureaucratic
that grinds down their resistance to the point where they just
give up trying.
If teachers somehow do get to the point of finding out some
information concerning their work conditions and pay, department
heads then resort to plain lying, usually preceded with the phrase
that "you just don't understand the situation" or "this is how
works here in Hungary." Through a mesh of confusing statistics,
teachers who question their superiors are quickly humbled;
exaggerated amounts paid in taxes and overhead costs are frequently
cited. For example, at a department meeting at the Budapest Teacher
Training College, when teachers complained about low wages for the
extra hours of teaching they do, the head of department pointed to
the fact that for every HUF 500 paid in wages the college is
paying HUF 1,500 because of taxes.
Since extra hours usually do not have employment taxes attached to
them (and even if it did it would be only 46.7%), this was a thinly
veiled attempt at creative bookkeeping. In the words of Mark Twain:
"Lies, damn lies, and statistics." While it would be tempting and
easy to point the finger at a few dishonest individuals, what is
shocking is this system of corruption seems to be
Furthermore, the motivation for such behavior can't be put down to
just simple greed. Rather, it seems to be a Hungarian method of
dealing with shrinking budgets and downsizing.
Last year, Hungarian higher education institutions were rocked to
their foundations by massive government cuts, which resulted in job
losses of approximately 20%. Ironically, many of those who lost
jobs were either non-conformists, young members of staff (who
incidentally, provided hope in terms of new teaching ideas,
and enthusiasm), and foreigners. Considering that the guest teacher
program has a separate budget of its own which was not affected by
the government cuts, the loss foreign teaching staff that resulted
from the wave of cuts last year is incomprehensible.
During last year's teacher cuts, many foreigners were needlessly
sacrificed. Unfortunately, it appears that if further government
will be slated for the future, it is more than likely that history
will repeat itself. As a department head succinctly put it, "if the
government cuts the number of teachers, it's the native speakers
will be on the front lines and who will have to go first."
Native speaking language teachers lost their jobs despite the fact
that the cuts in question did not affect the guest teacher program.
While everyone was in the dark and tried to forecast what kind of
reductions there would be, no college or university was willing to
make any commitments concerning native speakers. This, despite the
fact that the Ministry had made it clear that the jobs that were to
be cut were full-time staff positions (i.e. Hungarian jobs).
Nevertheless, most native speakers found themselves on the chopping
block. Meanwhile, Hungarian staff were busy jockeying into position
and made efforts to please department heads and the administration
order to secure their jobs (better known as brown-nosing). In the
end, some Hungarian positions were preserved and financed using
from the guest teacher program.
Aside from the myriad of financial scandals, a lot of guest
are disappointed and disillusioned simply because they find that
are not being used to their full potential. Instead, they are
relegated to doing menial tasks, many of which are contrary to the
nature of the Ministry's objectives for the guest-teacher program.
At this point, the question naturally arises about what the
of Education has been doing while the guest teacher program is
abused and its objectives are not being met. It seems that the
Ministry is fully aware of the problem but feels that there is
nothing it can do. As far as the Ministry is concerned, at the
beginning of each semester it determines how many guest teachers
employed and then merely transfers the money. There is no follow-up
to how the money is spent nor is there any form of quality control.
A reason most cited by the Ministry for its inaction is that there
actually nothing they can do. As the program is set up, it is not
their responsibility to enforce adherence to the program
Another reason for the Ministry's laissez-faire attitude is that
are unable to do anything even if they wished to because there are
resources available to properly administer the program.
These excuses are a bit unusual when considering the amount of
that is spent on the program. Anonymous sources have pointed out
what the Ministry is actually doing is indirectly supplying an
alternative mode of funding. As the theory goes, the Ministry has
never been fully supportive of the cuts it was forced to make.
by turning a blind eye to such mismanagement of funds, universities
and colleges are able to cushion the effects of the government's
If this is the case, it still does not justify the activities
undertaken by Hungary's higher education institutions. Moreover, it
tarnishes the image of administrative bodies and sends a message to
foreign governments and businesses that Hungarian (and Eastern
European) management is synonymous with corruption and
Ironically, the corruption that exists in higher education seems to
mirror a much larger trend. White collar crime in Hungary trebled
last year, with losses to the state resulting from such crime at
11.7 billion (US$ 80 million), a 131% increase from the previous
Unfortunately, the administrative practices of colleges and
universities have already extended themselves beyond the Ministry's
guest teacher program. The TEMPUS initiative, launched by the
European Commission under the auspices of the PHARE program for the
purpose of financing joint European projects between members of the
European Union and Eastern Europe, has undergone similar problems
when dealing with higher education institutions.
With the socio-political changes implemented at the beginning of
decade, schools unexpectedly found themselves thrust into the
capitalist market. In order to help them adjust to this new
western assistance in the field of education has been mostly in the
area of income-generation. Principals have been made to view their
positions as managers of financial enterprises, thus relegating
pedagogic concerns to the background.
TEMPUS is an example of such western assistance in the field of
education. While their initial objectives deserve merit, the way in
which programs like TEMPUS are run is far from ideal. Western
universities and colleges tend to benefit most from projects in
of staff mobility and the activities planned. In addition to this,
most of the grant money goes to pay for the services provided by
western partners, on the one hand, and office equipment
(photocopiers, computers, etc.) provided by western industry, on
It is without doubt that money is on the minds of college and
university administrators worldwide. Thus, income-generation is an
activity undertaken by the vast majority of higher education
institutions around the globe. In Hungary, however, there is a
difference. Income-generating activities are pursued for the
of creating a slush fund and a capital base from where to
executive salaries that are low in comparison to the private sector
as well as a to finance holidays and "shopping trips", all of which
are regarded as fringe benefits to be enjoyed by management. Since
administrators working for multinational firms earn up to five
more than their university counterparts, income-generation is seen
an attempt to redress this balance.
While college and university administration use the income
between the private and public sectors as an excuse to justify
diverting money to their own pockets, teaching staff are left to
for themselves with the pittance they receive as a normal salary.
Subsequently, the rift between the haves and have-nots is widened
among those educators who are fortunate enough to participate in
income-generating activities and those who are not. Western
assistance in the field of education is used, therefore, not to
improve the quality of education, i.e., through the purchase of
educational materials or related activities. Instead, it is being
used by most institutions as start-up capital for income-generating
activities that in many instances have little to do with education.
Mismanagement of funds, endemic to most colleges and universities,
no secret to those working in higher education institutions. Yet
teachers themselves seem to adopt an apathetic reaction to the
corruption that exists. One explanation for this apathy among
Hungarian teachers is because of a general psychological condition
inherited from the past. Laszlo Petrovic-Offner calls this a state
"learned helplessness", in where people under the previous regime
were conditioned to being unable to take responsibility, not only
their own actions, but for broader issues as well. Others dismiss
this prognosis and argue that people are simply afraid of change,
brought about their unwillingness to take responsibility for their
actions. In conjunction with this, there is a lack of initiative;
is easier to pretend not to see or hear anything.
Whatever the reason, foreign teachers working in Hungary are just
apathetic toward the whole situation. For some, the knowledge that
there exists no legal recourse is discouraging enough. Others have
become defeatist, realizing that to change the education system is
paramount to changing all of society. Still, others don't care;
many guest teachers are here for the short-term (only one or two
years), they feel the effort is not worth the hassle since they
be leaving soon anyway. Thus, foreign teachers in Hungary who are
slightly aware of what is going on are in a quandary about what to
do. They are a fragmented group and there exists no solidarity
them since their purpose for being in Hungary are diverse. Some,
as those working with the British Council, are unable to become
actively involved because of their separate contract with a sending
In the end, what is far too often overlooked is the end receiver of
the educational process -- the students. While teachers are
short-changed and others bemoan the managerial skills of
administrators, students are being robbed of their education. There
has been a clear decline in the quality of education despite the
increase in the number of foreign professionals working in Hungary.
Because of a systematic lack of information, teachers are
and, in many cases, unqualified to teach certain subjects.
Conversely, some of Hungary's best teachers (foreign and native
alike) have become disillusioned and have left the field of
education, usually for more money and peace of mind. Many
have prematurely left Hungary, harboring bitter memories which have
translated into a negative outlook of Hungary and Hungarians.
meanwhile, have simply lost faith and any hope in Eastern Europe's
transition toward democracy. As a teacher in Miskolc was fond of
saying: "the more things change around here, the more they actually
stay the same."
John Horvath ) is a writer and educator based in
|+ - ||Hungarian-Sumerian Connections (mind)
If I may offer, somewhat belatedly, my 10 cents' worth to the discussion over
the Sumerian-Hungarian theory, I would like to call your attention to the
essay of Prof. Ida Bobula (Origin of the Hungarian Nation; Danubius Research
& Info. Center, Gainsville, FL, 1966). In one of its chapters, entitled
"Sumerian and Hungarian" pp. 27 ff), she compares a considerable number of Sume
rian words to Hungarian ones. Perhaps, those who have been involved in the
recent discussion, might want to look up the cited source.
|+ - ||Hungary Report? (mind)
I am really surprised that Charles Vamossy has fallen for
the "so called" article by John Horvath. This is at best an
anti-Hunagarian propaganda, at worst a pellioniszian charge,
without any foundation at all. Any yellow journalist can do
better than that. This is nothing but a long-winded general
accusation. I have kept reading this nonsense because I was
waiting for some meat, but there is none so he can't supply
I seem to remember that we have rejected to be a forum
for the followers of pellioniszian chaos. And guess what?
First Odor shows up, than Horvath.I am really tired of this,
the flooding of our mail boxes.
|+ - ||Re: Soros wrongdoings---a short list (mind)
In article >, S or G Farkas
>First LaRouche, then Gingrich and now this.
>We do need a deodorizer.
>Gabor D. Farkas
Yes,it is quite malodorous (mal_ODOR_ous) around here!
|+ - ||Re: WW? (mind)
In article >,
Janos Zsargo > writes:
>As your approach reminds me a little child who read too much tale about
>Santa Claus and looking for him on the sky at Christmas time.
Heh, heh, heh. Can't stand the heat worth a damn, can you?
|+ - ||Re: WW? (mind)
In article >,
Janos Zsargo > writes:
>What are these critical points? And how could we avoid that 'ultimate
>Please, give some detail, not just general statements!
Try the carving up of Hungary following the First World War -- Trianon,
Janos! You might want to delve into the works of Randolph Bourne, perhaps
the most articulate American writer to oppose American intervention in the
conflict. Even Bourne wrote disparagingly of "magyarization" in greater
Hungary before and during the war. If Hungary couldn't get some
even-handed sympathy from him, it wasn't likely to get it from the vast
majority of Americans who supported the war. Just like it won't get much
support from Americans if anti-American ultranationalists like you ever
come to power in Budapest and start trying to reassemble pre-Trianon
greater Hungary by force. Fortunately, I think your own country men are
much too wise to ever give you the opportunity to do this.
|+ - ||Re: Health insurance (mind)
At 11:32 PM 3/5/96 -0500, Joe Szalai wrote:
>This is a valid question, Gabor. I'll be interested in Eva Durant's
>response. At least your answer, from this, and other posts, is quite clear.
>What you're saying is that you can afford medical care and screw those who
>can't. It's time to wean Hungarians off the state (satan). Right?
Please don't put words in my mouth. If you want to debate, then argue and
ask. Attack the ideas not the person. If I didn't do this until now, I
apologize. I am trying to attack only those who (in my opinion) are
subhumans (nazis and their sympathizers come to mind).
>If I'm wrong, then please give your views on the future of medical care in
>Hungary. What is your "concrete" and "realistic" message to poorer
>Hungarians who need medical care and can't afford it?
Here it is (not my message to poorer or richer, just some ideas):
1. Try to live by the Hungarian saying: addig nyujtozkodj, amig a takarod
e'r (roughly: if your comforter is too short, bend your knees).
2. Present to the population the facts: how much medical care costs how much
money and what kind of tax burden that means on their income.
3. Present them with options, such as those that were adopted in Oregon (I
think), where a list of illnesses was compiled that are covered by the state
medical insurance, and others that are not (because the financial means are
4. After the people are well informed, let them decide what they want either
through a referendum or by electing members of parlament who support their
preferred point of view.
Gabor D. Farkas
|+ - ||Re: Labor Unions (Formerly Health insurance) (mind)
At 10:38 PM 3/5/96 -0500, Gabor D. Farkas wrote:
>My problem is not with the strength of the labor unions but with the ways
>that strength is being used.
I can only assume that they use their strength to promote their interests.
This should not be a surprise to anyone. Besides, labour unions in Hungary
never enjoyed the opportunity to decide how to use its strength. I wouldn't
want to see that kind of government control in America.
>The most disgusting example is when the
>members of the teachers' union in our school district refused to give
>college recommendations to students in the senior class, while it looked
>that their contract negotiations were not moving towards their desired >goals.
Were the teachers negotiating for something that is disgusting? If not,
then why shouldn't they use whatever tools they have? Everyone else does.
Just because they are our (societies) employees does not mean that they are
slaves to our wishes and demands.
>>Since you are opposed to the public sector are you in favour of user fees?
>>Do you think only those parents with school aged children should pay for
>No. However, I do think that using only the real estate valuation as the
>basis for the school tax is wrong (this is how it is done in New York >State).
That's how it's done in Ontario as well. It may not be the best system but
it's one where even the rich have to pay.
It's interesting that you're opposed to user fees for education. You don't
mind others helping financially to educate your kids but you don't want to
help pay for others medical needs. This is a rather selfish attitude,
wouldn't you say? Do you think your views are catching on in Hungary?
|+ - ||Re: Soros wrongdoings---a short list (mind)
Captain Happy Man (Bill Overbaugh) >
> [...] Through the Foundation, I was placed in three families,
>given a monthly stipend of approximately 3,000 forints, and placed in a
>gymnazium in Eger. [...]
Dear friend of mine, do not be ridiculous. That 3000 forints is approximately
23 US dollras. So, Soros bought your spirit for 23$/month? Huhhh.
You cannot be so cheep! And I hardly beleive that you did not have
that 23 dollars (/month).
I make here a suggestin. If you hear that someone wants to come to
Hungary in the same manner, please write me. I will give him/her more
money than Soros! I give 25$!
> I do not know anything about what Soros has done wrong, but I
>know that the lives he has touched and changed with his exchange program
>are ufathomable. [...]
You can learn from me. Reed thoroughly what I wrote on this issue.
Do not forget that if someone wants to do a really wrong thing
then he or she has to do some good things too to collect followes and
supporters and to mislead people.
Which is good and natural in a country that can be extremely harmful in an
other one. You probably heard about the natural catastrophe caused by the
seemingly harmless animal, the rabbit. If the vast majority of Hungarians
think that Soros is harmful for Hungarians, then you should think about it.
> [...] Too many opportunities would fail and too many chances
> would be lost if this Foundation was destroyed.
And several other opportunities will arise. (Not for the same people,
You can be sure. The next governement will close the Soros Foundation in
Hungary, regardless the constant crying.
Best regards, and bremainthe friend of Hungary and the Hungarians.
Try to understand the country more deeply. In that case you will
undertsand my position. You wont be the first person who changed
his/her opinion on this issue. (Victor Orban did the same. But
maybe, he is a nazi :-). Ivan Petho suggested something similar
a week ago.)
|+ - ||Re: Where are the facts? (mind)
Dear Csaba Zoltani,
Why are you so nervous? I do not understand. I only exercised my
right to express my opinion about certain figures in Hungarian politics.
I accept that my argument is not absolutely well founded. It cannot be
that because I do not have the right to investigate the files of the
You mentioned some weak point in my argument. You wants information,and take
ons which reveal your prejudices (naturally, positive prejudices, because
you are "liberal", but for me prejudices does not have sign.)
But you simply ignored the strong points in my argument. There is a strong
and easily verifyable statement about the text written to the check mentioned
in my previous writing on this issue. You wants facts---naturally,
you think, you have only the right to decide what is a fact.
I think, this question is very simple. You have to go to the Szabo Ervin Librar
and to ask a check for the payment of the TOEFL exame. That is all.
Let us speak about this issue . Because it seems to me that all
the other issues are too complicated, and we always run into sometimes
deep phylosophical questions about facts etc.
Ps.: Some gangsters you cannot catch on the usual way, and you cannot
punish for their crimes. But if they cross the red light, that can help ...