George Soros, The Man Who Is Upholding Society
George Soros, the great philanthropist, is being demonized by some right wing commentators in the media. For example, Glenn Beck dedicated an entire show on Fox News to George Soros, calling him the puppet master.
Fareed Zakaria, a commentator on CNN, has a term for certain governments. He calls them illiberal democracies. In other words, these are governments which were supposedly elected through a democratic process, but which refuse to abide by the limits of a democratic government and abuse their power. The rise of illiberal democracies, such as Turkey and Russia, coincides with the demonization of George Soros. They can actually be tied together.
Vladimir Putin is the one who heads the illiberal democracy in Russia. In 2004, Ukraine and Georgia had revolutions in which they tried to take off the shackles of the regime in Moscow. At the time, certain nongovernmental organizations that took part in the rebellion had received some funding from George Soros. Vladimir Putin took the opportunity to demonize George Soros, saying that George Soros had orchestrated the entire uprising. The general atmosphere in the world was conducive for suspicions about the so called elites. This was especially true when governments started having financial difficulties and when economies started collapsing.
Many right wing extremists who were running for office in various European countries and even in North America started demonizing George Soros. They knew that the conspiracy theories they were spouting about him were not true, but they wanted to get people worked up so that they would vote for them.
In Hungary, the Prime Minister ran a public campaign against George Soros. He put up billboards and posters all over the country. There were messages that demonized George Soros. It was pretty antisemitic. In fact, many billboards and posters were defaced with antisemitic graffiti, which should not have come as a surprise to anyone with a brain. Orban, the Prime Minister of Hungary, even had his government put out a survey specifically about George Soros and what people think about him. He even told the intelligence agencies in Hungary to start “investigating” George Soros and the Open Society Foundations. As anyone with eyes can see, Orban was doing all of this for political gain in order to cement his popularity on Soros’ expense so that he can win reelection when he runs the next time.
This has gone on in other European countries as well. That would have been bad enough, even though many of those countries are small and do not have such an impact on global affairs. However, it is now seeping into the political atmosphere in the United States. Republican lawmakers are going to the extreme in an effort to win over their base, and they are buying into the alt-right’s ideas about George Soros.
Anyone who cares about democracy and freedom needs to stand up against this. It is important that we do not let extremists ruin our society by attacking the very people who are upholding it, like George Soros.
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