Dr. Janos Horvath meets with the Federation
5/2/2007 - Representatives of the American Hungarian Federation met with The Honorable Janos Horvath on May 2, 2007 in Washington, D.C. at the Kossuth House. Dr. Horvath has been a Member of the Hungarian Parliament since 1998 (Hungarian Civic Party (FIDESZ)) and previously served as a Member of the Hungarian Parliament between 1945-1947 (Smallholders Party). Dr. Horvath holds the distinguished title of "Senior Member of the Parliament" and focuses on political/economic matters and foreign affairs. He was also a 2006 recipient of the Federation's highest honor, the Col. Commandant Michael Kovats Medal of Freedom for his lifetime achievements and committment to democratic values awarded during his US voting rights awareness campaign.
Dr. Horvath generously spent over three hours with representatives of the American Hungarian Federation detailing his work and the situation in Hungary, including why Hungary is not living up to its potential.
Dr. Horvath started his overview with a summary of his recently published book, "Tiltott Tortenelmunk 1945-1947" ("Our Banned History 1945-1947") and drew a parallel between his two tenures in the Hungarian Parliament. He compared the successful free elections, economic and fiscal policies, and legislative activities of the 1945-1947 period in Hungary with the current political, economic and moral crisis.
He examined the impact of the Yalta Conference on Hungarian political life and argued that the public has a misconception about Yalta. According to Dr. Horvath, it is widely accepted by the public in general that Hungary was "sold out" to the Soviet Union. He disagreed with this belief and stated that Yalta in fact promised independence to Hungary and this resulted in free general elections in 1945. Dr. Horvath noted that voter turnout was very high in 1945 and as a result of a democratic election, his party, the Smallholders Party, won 60% of the seats in the Hungarian Parliament despite Soviet occupation. The Soviet Union, however, ignored Yalta and assisted the Hungarian Communist Party to seize power, destroy democracy and dominate Hungary. Dr. Horvath pointed out that the original intention of the Yalta Conference was to create democracy in Hungary and, but for the Soviet interference, the 1945-1947 period is evidence of this fact.
Following this detailed in-depth analysis, Dr. Horvath answered questions about the current deplorable state of Hungary’s economy, governance and related issues. He noted that the political and governmental crisis in Hungary has a strong moral component, but in essence is rooted in misguided economic policies. Dr. Horvath mentioned that the current government does not want to see a robust middle class and small businesses develop because they would not be independent of governmental influence. He also noted that agriculture is in a very difficult situation today: lands are uncultivated, a wide range of agricultural products are imported from other countries, and there is no agricultural policy to support small and medium size farms.
Dr. Horvath noted the important role of Prime Ministers throughout Hungary’s most difficult and challenging times and cited Prime Ministers Imre Nagy and Pal Teleki as specific examples. He answered questions about former Prime Minister Viktor Orban and spoke of Orban’s intelligence, in-depth knowledge of issues and demanding work style. He mentioned that Orban held his office as Prime Minister with honor, respect and dignity.
Dr. Horvath discussed the origins of the moral crisis in Hungary and blamed the regime of former communist dictator Janos Kadar for "brainwashing" entire generations and erasing certain chapters of history, religion and general moral values from Hungarian society. He also blamed the Kadar regime for the inability of Hungarian society to act and respond properly to the current crisis in Hungary. Fortunately, there are historical traditions to draw upon in building a strong and healthy democracy in Hungary. One just needs to know the past.
Dr. Horvath’s hosts thanked Dr. Horvath for his insights and noted that it was the responsibility of Hungarian American organizations to educate opinion and policy makers of these facts and thereby promote democracy and American/Hungarian relations based on a solid footing, as opposed to, in Dr. Horvath’s words, the "unstable stability" wrought by the current prime minister.
Dr. Horvath later attended the 2007 Hungarian May Ball, a benefit event where proceeds were equally shared to help cover the costs of the Hungarian Scouts participation in the 21st World Scout Jamboree in England and the Federation's 2007 100th Anniversary programs.
Read about his 2006 visit with AHF in Washington and his United States voting rights awareness campaign (note: some articles in Hungarian only)
Dr. János Horváth, a distinguished emeritus professor of economics, has been a Member of the Hungarian Parliament since 1998, in the ranks of the FIDESZ-Hungarian Civic Party. He first entered public life as a university student via the Hungarian Independence Movement against Hitler and the Nazis. In December 1944 he was arrested and cruelly interrogated by the Hungarian branch of the Nazis, the Arrow Cross, and was saved from execution by the advance of the Soviet army into Budapest. A few years later he was again imprisoned, this time by the Soviet imposed Communist dictatorship. Meanwhile he had been elected Member of the Hungarian Parliament in 1945, where he served until his arrest and imprisonment in 1947. He became a political leader in the 1956 Revolution against the Soviet occupation and communist dictatorship. After the Soviet military intervention he gained refuge with UN in New York and settled in his new home, the US. He earned a Ph.D. in economics from Columbia University and became one of the leading experts of grants economics, an area of study of unilateral transfers in the economy with particular relevance for intergovernmental economics, intra-family resource allocation, and nonprofit service provision. He was active in public life during his 41 years in the USA, e.g. he was the Chairman of Economic Advisers of Indiana Governor Edgar Whitcomb in 1970s when he also served as the head of the Department of Economics at Butler University. In 1998 he repatriated to Hungary and was elected to the Parliament a second time, and in 2002 he was reelected. As a lawmaker his focus is political economy and world affairs.
dr. Horváth János a kiváló közgazdász professzor 1998 óta képviselo a Magyar Országgyulésben a Fidesz-Magyar Polgári Szövetség színeiben. A közéletbe még egyetemistaként kapcsolódott be amikor a Szabad Élet Diákmozgalom tagjaként részt vett a nemzeti ellenállásban. Tevékenységéért a nyilasok halálra ítélték, de a szovjet hadsereg Budapestre történo eloretörése alkalmat adott neki a fogságból való szökésre. Néhány évvel késobb újra letartóztatták, de ezúttal a kommunista diktatúra bírósága ítélte koholt vádak alapján négy évi kényszermunkára. A koncepciós perre azt követoen kerül sor 1947-ben, hogy a Független Kisgazda és Polgári Párt színeiben 1945-ben parlamenti képviselové választották az elso (és további 45 évig egyetlen) szabad országgyulési választásokon. Aktív szerepet vállalt az 1956-os forradalomban, de a szovjet katonai hatalomátvétel után emigrációba kényszerült, majd az ENSZ-nél New York-ban lelt menedékre. Horváth János azon kevesek közé tartozik aki sikeres pályát futott be új otthonában, az Egyesült Államokban is. A Columbia Egyetemen szerzett doktori címet a közgazdaságtantudomány területén, és a többirányútranszferek közgazdaságtana elismert szakértojévé vált. Kutatási területe különös jelentosséggel bír a különbözo kormányzati egységek közötti magatartások, a családon belüli eroforrásallokáció és a nonprofit szolgáltatások jobb megértésében. Az USA-ban töltött 41 éve közéletileg is aktív volt, pl. Indiana állam kormányzója Edgar Whitcomb Gazdasági Tanácsadó Testületének volt a vezetoje a 70-es években amikor a Butler Egyetem közgazdaságtan tanszékvezetojeként is szolgált. 1998-ban visszaköltözött Magyarországra ahol újra parlamenti képviselové választották, majd 2002-ben újraválasztották. Jogalkotóként a gazdasági és a nemzetközi diplomáciai ügyekben vállal kiemelt szerepet.
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