Hungarian PM denounces Soros-backed college, US urges restraint

Discussion in 'Accreditation Discussions (RA, DETC, state approva' started by jhp, Mar 31, 2017.

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  1. jhp

    jhp Member

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    https://sg.news.yahoo.com/hungarys-orban-says-soros-founded-college-cheated-diplomas-100821229--business.html

    Central European University
    Central European University

     
  2. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

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    I'm not clear on their complaint but I guess if Hungary wants to pass a law saying this or that then they get to pass that law. I'm guessing there's an interesting little backstory that is yet to come out.
     
  3. Johann

    Johann Active Member

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    My take is that some of the "critical thinking" that goes on at CEU may not be in accord with Viktor Orban's thinking. He's labeled a centre-right conservative; some of those who don't like his policies have called him "authoritarian," "Putinist," "strongman" and some have gone as far as "dictator." He's been accused by his detractors of curbing civil liberties and restricting free speech. Among his other accomplishments, he "built a wall" (a fence, actually,) the Hungary-Serbia barrier against illegal immigrants. Does that particular act remind you of anyone? :smile: In the climate of Islamic terrorism and the migrant crisis, his political stance is very popular.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hungarian_border_barrier

    I don't think you cross Viktor Orban and get off lightly. This Soros-CEU situation may be an example of that - but what do I know?

    J.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 31, 2017
  4. heirophant

    heirophant Member

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    I think that this is a tempest in a teacup.

    The complaint in Hungary seems to be that CEU markets itself as both an American and a Hungarian university, offering both American and Hungarian degrees. That's supposedly more desirable to European students than a simple Hungarian degree would be, giving CEU an unfair advantage. According to its webpage, CEU boasts what it calls an "absolute charter" from the state of New York and American accreditation from Middle States.

    https://www.ceu.edu/administration/accreditation

    Apparently the new Hungarian legislation requires that foreign universities operating in Hungary have a physical campus in their country of origin.

    CEU is screeching that being forced to construct a campus in New York state would drive it out of business. Of course it could also stop advertising its largely meaningless New York charter and halt any suggestion that it awards its students American degrees.

    My feeling is that what's motivating this is the collision of two big egos, the populist Mr. Orban and the international globalist billionaire Mr. Soros (who hates populism and spends hundreds of millions to undermine and subvert any politicians that show any signs of it). Neither is likely to back down. It's conceivable that CEU is being attacked because it has become a center of opposition to the elected Hungarian government. Soros doesn't fund universities because he likes education, Soros has a political agenda and hopes to use all of his creatures to advance his causes.

    So if CEU wants to coexist peacefully with Mr. Orban, perhaps it needs to stop taking its marching orders from Mr. Soros.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 31, 2017
  5. Johann

    Johann Active Member

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    But Mr. Soros is paying for all those CEU soldiers... A true clash of giants here. Could be epic.

    "We’ll just put some bleachers out in the sun
    And have it on Highway 61" - Bob Dylan
    :smile:

    https://bobdylan.com/songs/highway-61-revisited/

    J.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 1, 2017
  6. Stanislav

    Stanislav Active Member

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    Of course, in US, a law that applies to precisely one entity would be unconstitutional.
     
  7. Stanislav

    Stanislav Active Member

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    Thing is, Mr. Soros' political agenda benefits from promoting education. Apparently, Mr. Orban's agenda is hostile to that.

    Disclosure: two of my Physics teachers received a monthly stipend from the Open Society Foundation. Try to find a sinister agenda in that.
     
  8. Stanislav

    Stanislav Active Member

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    Please explain how a degree approved by NY Regents and Middle States is not "American". It appears that this school's faculty is rather distinguished: Directory of Faculty and Staff. What's not to your liking?
     
  9. b4cz28

    b4cz28 New Member

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    So, now if we don't support Soros, we don't support education!! Think of the children!!!:Eyecrazy:

    Soros is nothing more than a thug with money. A man who makes a living hurting others and their countries. He bets against economies and profits. Without him in the political arena of America their would be no Democratic party on a national scale.
     
  10. TomE

    TomE New Member

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    This is an extension of the Fidesz push to eradicate all entities that are acting domestically with foreign monetary backing (particularly those financed by Soros). Sure, Soros is Hungarian, but he is probably hated there more than in any other place (well, other than Russia and possibly England, Thailand, and Malaysia). It looks like Orban is backing down a bit after the US weighed in on the situation.
     
  11. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

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    We are talking about Hungary, right? They are not bound by our constitution.
     
  12. Stanislav

    Stanislav Active Member

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    No, you don't support education if you do not support education. Soros is the reason many of the best teachers in ex-Commie countries were able to continue teaching without starving in the 1990ies.

    Wow. a Republican railing against market speculation and profits is a sight to behold. Are you sure you won't be more more comfortable in Berinie's Revolution? But then again, Comrade Bannon is a self-proclaimed Leninist, so...

    It is astounding how folks who lost the popular vote 7 out of 8 times in the last 20 years speak for "the American People". Republican Party would not exist on a national scale save for a gang of plutocrats it serves.
     
  13. Stanislav

    Stanislav Active Member

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    Sure, but there's a reason behind that old Common Law principle. I personally do not support crippling democracy into the "illiberal democracy" (Orban) or "sovereign democracy" (Putin the Huilo).
     
  14. heirophant

    heirophant Member

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    Because the university that awarded the degree has no presence in the United States. It doesn't exist here, except on paper in the form of a NY charter. And a NY charter is merely state approval to operate an educational institution inside the state of New York. Which CEU isn't doing.

    Outside the boundaries of the state of New York, a NY charter is meaningless.

    I suppose that it's a reasonably good university in its way.

    I didn't say that I didn't like CEU.

    I said that I think that the whole controversy is kind of contrived, a clash of two huge egos that's being spun in misleading directions by the press.

    Hungary has enacted (or is in the process of enacting) a law that says that any ostensibly foreign university that operates in Hungary has to have a physical campus in its home country. I approve of that law and think that European nations generally (and the the UK in particular) should copy it.

    The new Hungarian law doesn't threaten CEU's existence, unless its existence is dependent on its continuing to advertise itself as an American university on the basis of a meaningless (outside NY) New York charter. I believe that it already possesses a Hungarian charter (or whatever they call approval to operate).

    All Orban really did was challenge Soros' desires, and Soros and his media enablers don't like it when that happens.

    As far as I can see, no educational institutions are being harmed by all the posturing.
     
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  15. heirophant

    heirophant Member

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    Why? What part of the US Constitution would it violate?

    Laws pertaining to single individuals, whether natural persons or corporations, are actually rather common in US law.

    These are termed 'private bills', as opposed to 'public bills' that pertain to everyone in the jurisdiction that meets the conditions such that the public law pertains to them. Public bills can be written in such a way that their conditions of applicability only apply in fact to a single individual, without naming that individual specificially. That's sometimes done when a particular company is being granted tax relief, subsidies or something that it doesn't want made public.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Private_bill

    I believe that the Constitutional difficulty in the United States relates to what are termed 'bills of attainder'. A bill of attainder is a law passed by the legislature that declares an individual guilty of a crime, without a trial having occurred.

    In Hungary, what Orban's government is doing to Soros and CEU appears to be (in American terms) a public law bill that is tailored to apply to one university in particular. It's a public bill since it applies to any ostensibly foreign university operating in Hungary, requiring all of them (even if in fact there's only one) to have a physical presence in their ostensible country of origin.

    Soros' defenders might try to argue (were this the US) that passing this law somehow deprives CEU of some right of due process, thus making it in effect a bill of attainder and hence unconstitutional. But states pass laws all the time that establish conditions for the legal operation of universities, without creating Constitutional difficulties because some entrepeneurs fail to satisfy them.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 13, 2017
  16. Stanislav

    Stanislav Active Member

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    Great answer to your own question, hierophant. Yep, this clumsy law clearly has punitive intent affecting one school, so "Soros" defenders would be correct. And btw, this potentially affects students, staff, and Hungarian academis community much more than it affects Soros. Perhaps, as a Canadian identifying as a Liberal, I'm concerned for our former leader's livelihood, huh?
    (I'm not, btw, and not just because of his prominent Russian background. Dr. Ignatieff is a high enough profile person not to worry too much about employment.)
     
  17. Stanislav

    Stanislav Active Member

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    Yes it is.



    And requiring a treaty to be able to offer dually-recognized degrees? Nonsense. Among other things, such a law would ban all Catholic seminaries, as they are jointly regulated by a local Bishop and a Holy See agency (Congregation for Catholic Education). How many other non-bogus secular schools would such law target?

    Well, CEU President, faculty, colleagues at other universities, and U. S. Department of State all think this law harms CEU. Do you purport to know better?

    As to "not being an American university": we on this forum know better. CEU advertises that its degrees are "recognized" in US. Do you have any reasons to believe a degree from RA CEU would NOT be so recognised?
    As a matter of fact, let's consider a case. Touro University Moscow graduate with his silly little MBA holds an unquestionably American degree. My best bet is that CEU graduate would experience the same or better (by virtue of the school having better admissions standards) recognition. Why would my bet be wrong?
     
  18. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

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    Yeah, but so what? Using that logic, every country would be the same as the US/UK. Maybe good in some ways but 1) it's not reality and 2) it's not ever going to be reality.
     
  19. Stanislav

    Stanislav Active Member

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    No. Using that logic, every country should embrace principles like equality before the law and due process. US/UK themselves were not always US/UK; it's a useful model to strive for. Besides, shouldn't an EU country be held to some standards in their rule of law?
     
  20. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

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    Like the antitrust exemption for Major League Baseball? I'm sure there there are plenty of other carefully sculpted laws and regulations, but that one comes immediately to mind.

    Which is to say, even the US/UK isn't as "US/UK" as a lot of people think.
     

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