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Thursday, March 15, 2018

Pirates and hacker-poet can become a power in Iceland

“The pirate party” of Iceland in the polls almost ahead of its nearest rivals a day before the parliamentary elections on October 29. Her representatives already declared that is ready to form the government and made a number of loud statements. If elected, the pirates will grant asylum to Edward Snowden, will discuss the possibility of joining the EU, will banish from the island of NATO soldiers, as well as establish in the country “direct democracy”, which means referendums on every occasion.

photo: ru.wikipedia.org

Brigid Jonsdottir

The pirate party in Iceland was formed only four years ago, and its founder was made by Brigitta Jonsdottir, a former employee of Wikileaks and self-proclaimed poet. In the previous elections in local Parliament – the Althing – her party won only 5.1 % of the votes but in this election she tipped at least 20% of the vote. A week ago, according to polls, the pirates were ahead of the nearest competitor – the “Party of Independence”, but the latest data put them in second place with a lag of 5% of the vote. Icelandic experts not undertake to predict the outcome of the vote, but the “Pirate party” seems to have already felt the taste of victory.

“We are calling for reform of the entire system, not small changes that can be easily undone. We do not call myself neither left nor right, we focus on the systems. In other words, we consider ourselves hackers,” says Brigid Jonsdottir. – We want to be the ruling “Robin hoods”. We want to take power away from those in power and give it to all the people of Iceland”. At the same time she Jonsdottir does not seek to become Prime Minister, saying that “he does not see himself in this role”. And even the name of their candidate for this role does not call.

A member of the party Ivarsdottir Sunnah have also expressed the willingness of the pirates to run the country: “We are ready. If you look at how the rules of the previous study, you will come to the conclusion that many years of experience within the legacy system does not guarantee to control the government.” However, she clarified that the decisions they’re going to rely on the opinions of experts.

In addition, Einarsdottir told about the intention to grant asylum to the disgraced US NSA employee Edward Snowden, whom she apparently believes if you are not a colleague, then at least a man with similar ideals. It also announced a referendum on the country’s accession to the European Union and added that in case of victory the pirates will reconsider the military presence of NATO on the island. This summer, the authorities signed a Memorandum of understanding with the United States that the soldiers of the Alliance will return to an abandoned naval base in Keflavík for the first time since 2006. “This decision was made without consulting anyone else, and I don’t agree with this”, – said Ivarsdottir.

Even if the “Pirate party” wins the upcoming election, she will not gain enough votes to form a parliamentary majority. For this she will need to form a coalition of at least 32 MPs (a total of 63 in the Althing), and hence, to compromise with the “Party of independence”. But both parties have said that working with each other did not intend.

Recall that in April this year, Prime Minister of Iceland, Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson resigned. The reason was the offshore scandal: reporters learned that the Prime Minister had concealed information that, together with his wife owned the company Wintris in the virgin Islands. This has created a crisis of confidence in the government by the inhabitants of the island and possibly caused the rise of the “Pirate party” claiming radical reform and opposition to the system. A survey of the Gallup Institute published in March, showed that only 17% of Icelanders trust the Parliament.

The inhabitants of the island not for the first time to show support for the political dilettantes. So, in 2010 the mayor of reykjavík has elected Jon Gnarr, a comedian, musician and writer without a College degree, have absolutely no experience in politics. One of his campaign promises was “not to fulfill any campaign promises” and his “Best party” presented himself as “openly corrupt”. Election campaign of Jon Gnarr was clearly a parody, and after the inauguration he appeared on the gay-parade in a dress and wig. This, however, did not prevent him safely to finalize before the end of his term in 2014.

“The increased popularity of the party could play the role that she is trying to ease the lives of ordinary people, – told “MK” a leading researcher of the Center for Northern Europe, Institute of Europe of RAS Valery Zhuravel. – The situation connected with offshore scandals, too, to some extent, helped them to rise. If they win, it will likely form the left-wing government as opposed to the right, which was in the country before. The party claims to act in the interests of the people, so I do not rule out a number of referenda in the event of her victory.”


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