It's the Illegal Piresans You Have to Worry About


Sorry, good people of Piresa; you'll find no refuge in Hungary.

Hungarians polled for their views on asylum seekers from a made-up country wanted the 'scroungers' thrown out.

Hungarian opinion research institute Tarki said: "We were surprised that two thirds of the interviewees demanded absolutely no asylum for Piresans, accused them of being spongers and agreed they should be sent home immediately."

Is liberalism dead in Central Europe? Ask Marian Tupy.

NEXT: Reason Comes to Charlottesville

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Maybe they thought the pollsters were saying “Parisians.”

  2. When I first read that, I saw “Persians”.

    I assume this question was asked in another language (where, I also assume, the word used for the made-up group isn’t very close to the word used for a real one)… but, when I first read this, I thought it was going to be a post complaining about anti-Muslim xenophobia.

    Of course, if the word used *IS* close to a word for a real group, maybe that’s just as bad on the whole xenophobia thing.

  3. Am I the only one that read that as: Persia and thought they were talking about Iran? I wonder who the Hungarians thought they were talking about.

    I remember some jokester asking congressmen what their position on Freedonia was. Only one guy didn’t double talk it. We could use a leader like Rufus T. Firefly today.

  4. Oust the wetbacks from Xenophobia!

  5. Next stop: A vote in the US House of Representatives for Piresa.

  6. This reminds me when Carolla and Kimmel collected signatures from women on a petition to repeal womens’ suffrage.

  7. ‘Maybe they thought the pollsters were saying “Parisians.”‘

    I’m on board. Throw the spongers out!

    I’m just kidding. As if Parisians use cleaning products…

  8. I thought that they meant Piraeus at first. The ancient and current port city connected with Athens. In ancient times Athens extended longwalls out to the Piraeus as a means to protect its access to the sea.

  9. I always said that Hungarians were too quick to jump the gun and stereotype others.

  10. Kerry Howley,

    Anyway, all this is illustrates (as have similar types of polls and mock “man on the street” interviews over the years) is that people can be prompted (with an appropriately worded query) to take all manner of oddball stances.

    What was that CBC production which went down to the U.S. asked Americans if Canada should be allowed access to the sea by the U.S. since Canada is a landlocked nation?

  11. Anybody touchy about anti-Parisian malice?

  12. similar types of polls

    Always wit’ da Polish sterotypes.

  13. M,

    At least that was funny. 🙂

  14. thoreau,

    As my conservative friend (some of my best friends are conservatives, honest!) put it: “The only thing wrong with France is Paris, and the only thing wrong with Paris is the Parisians.”

  15. Hi Kerry, I love your work. Which color are the Piresans? Thanks!!

  16. Actually, I thought it said “paisans” at first glance. Who doesn’t want a good paisano around?

  17. Loundry,

    Well, another joke goes like this:

    When God created all the nations for some reason he gave France a larger heap of blessings than any other nation. The best soil, the cleanest rivers, the most bountiful crops, great fishing, the most beautiful landscapes, etc. Well, upon seeing this all the other nations complained about this result. They asked, why is France so favored? So God thought about their petition for a time and decided that they were right. So in order to alleviate the situation God gave the French to France.

  18. Loundry,

    As I recall a Frenchman told me that joke. Or perhaps I read it in a book written by a Frenchman.

  19. i remember kimmel and corolla having people-on-the-street sign a petition against women’s suffrage. seems pretty similar, minus the paprika.

  20. Grotius, the show was called “This Hour Is 22 Minutes” (or maybe 20 minutes).

    The segment, if I recall correctly, was “Talking to Americans”. One of my favorite of those was when they came down here and said “Canada has finally ratified its Constitution, can we get you on camera saying “Congratulations, Canada, on becoming a country”?”

  21. edna,

    How about people signing petitions to ban dihydrogen monoxide?

  22. VM,

    Yeah, I think that particular thing has been done by a number of people.

  23. Boy, that survey shure makes those Hungarians look like a bunch of xenophobic yahoos just because they automatically reject large numbers of asylum seekers.

    Now, who would want to do that? Whatever could their motivation be?

  24. I guess at this point we need to see what the poll language was like.

    This statement was also in the linked to article:

    Hungary is repeatedly listed as one of the most xenophobic countries in the Europe, 90% of the population strictly rejected the idea of any further immigration in a recent poll.

  25. Sounds to me like the Hungarians are at least principled. Its not like they have it in for anyone in particular – they want everyone to stay the hell out.

  26. Magyarorszag for the Magyars!

    Although we wouldn’t mind having certain bits of Croatia, Slovenia, Slovakia and Rumania back. The current inhabitants will be resettled in Piresa.

  27. The Mad Magyar,

    You mean the bits that Hungary took over in WWII when it was in league with Germany?

  28. More likely the little bits of Hungary that Woodrow Wilson & Co. removed after World War I.

  29. ChrisO,

    Wilson didn’t remove them. They left in 1918 long before Wilson even got to Europe.

  30. ChrisO,

    In other words, for most of Eastern Europe what the Trianon Treaty did was to acknowledge the facts on the ground created by the former subject nationalities of the Russian and Austro-Hungarian Empires. Of course in some instances – say that of Poland – those nationalities had to continue to prove that they were independent states after Trianon, which the Poles did by kicking the crap out of the Soviets.

  31. No offence with Parisians (=p?rizsi) or Persians (=perzsa)…
    the word (pir?z) reminds me of the Pyrenees, at most, but not much.

    Anyway, let me blush for us tonight.

    (Should you be interested in the location of Piresia: it’s somewhere around here.
    “The Piresans are to be blamed for everything.”
    – Piresan saying)

  32. ms magyar,

    Google doesn’t have a Hungarian to English tool yet, and my Berlitz course got lost in the mail. Can you tell me something about what you linked to?
    Thank you.

  33. Wilson didn’t remove them. They left in 1918 long before Wilson even got to Europe.

    I’m not sure everybody agrees with that. The Trianon Treaty prevented Hungary from taking back its former territory by force after the end of the war, which I can certainly imagine them doing, given their history regarding ethnic minorities.

  34. ChrisO,

    How would Hungary have done so following the Triannon Treaty? After all, it was the Czechs and other nationalities who kicked their asses at the end war after all.

    Anyway, Hungary had to rely on big brother Germany in order to eventually wrest back those areas. In the process they went along with the Nazi extermination of the Jews.

  35. something about what you linked to

    Pollish haiku, obviously.

  36. I recall a poll long time ago where 4/5 of respondents expressed ‘absolutely no support’ for Brownian motion… 🙂

    (in my language, we use the same word for ‘movement’ and ‘motion’)

  37. on a more serious note, liberalism has never been very much ‘alive’ in Eastern Europe. except for a handful of people (like Mart Laar and Vaclav Klaus), for most politicians pretending to be ‘liberal’ was a sort of cargo-cult activity; now that European Union ships its cargo to everyone with proper connections, there’s no use being ‘liberal’.

  38. “I’m not sure everybody agrees with that.”

    You THINK!?!

    Eek. Eastern European territorial claims. Be afraid. Be very afraid.

  39. I remember years back, some beer brewer used to refer to the national characteristics of “the Artesians” (who supplied the brewery’s water).

  40. Pollish haiku, obviously.

    One, two, three, four, five
    One, two, three, four, five, six … um
    One, two, three, four, five

  41. I remember years back, some beer brewer used to refer to the national characteristics of “the Artesians” (who supplied the brewery’s water).

    Olympia beer, I believe.

  42. I remember years back, some beer brewer used to refer to the national characteristics of “the Artesians” (who supplied the brewery’s water).

    Well, I believe natives of the French province of Artois are called Artesians. That is where the name of the Artesian well originated.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.