Saturday, September 17, 2011

What do we know about Germany politics?

From the political signs littering the city, it's become apparent that there is an election coming up in Berlin. Nothing is as bad as the American campaign process at this point, but German political posters (and parties) do seem a tad hilarious.

Somehow, Ian got in a long phone survey about German politics so clearly it was time to get a little informed.

CDU Christian Democrats - Yeah, the name says it all (assholes). Major players with Merkel in the club

Green - Germans are not into subtlety. Guess what their platform is? It is pretty cool that they once planted some of that wacky tobaccy in the Reichstag garden. (I was trying to think of a slang word for weed and ended up on a parenting site for watching for drug use in teens. Died laughing!)

Die Partei - This is a joke party. They have been hosting an awful campaign of bizarre ads like this blackface ad comparing the "canditate" to Obama. We actually saw them throwing a sparsely populated party in the park today.

Piraten Partei - This is a real party. Named after pirates. "Bbased on the model of the Swedish Piratpartiet...supports the preservation of current civil rights in telephony and on the Internet; in particular, it opposes the European data retention policies and Germany's new Internet censorship law called Zugangserschwerungsgesetz. It also opposes artificial monopolies and various measures of surveillance of citizens."

This explanation is mostly in jest as we really don't know what's going on. Expats can't vote and as we have been barely able to figure our situation- let alone the political climate - we have taken a break from following the dreary and depressing world of politics.

This is with one big BUT. One of the coolest moments we've ever had in connection with the political world was when Obama was campaigning and spoke at the Siegessaule. We saw Obama! In person! Do other people remember that feeling of hope when it looked like he was definitely going to be elected? It was a great moment in my life...and it seems oh so long ago. That Obama has never come to full fruition. Maybe with another 4 years and the freedom of not worrying about re-election we can finally have the president we saw a glimmer of that day. A girl can hope...

American in Berlin

security event berlin

Police Berlin Security

Siegessäule back berlin

Still incredulous we will be seeing the future leader of the USA

Siegessäule Obama

Listen to part of his speech here (do be jealous that I watched it live)!  


Digital Cosmonaut said...

Just so you know, Die Partei was actually set up by a fantastic satirical magazine called Titanic. They do this stuff every year and almost got the German Word Cup bid for 2006 disqualified because they "attempted to bribe" the FIFA with black forest ham, sausages, a kukuclock and a beer mug. Even most german people get trolled by their stunts. Ive seen this being touted in the american/english speaking media and im amazed at how everybody is jumping on the outrage bandwagon though, taking them seriously without even bothering to check out what the party is about. They even state in their party program that they want to build up the berlin wall again, and dump atomic waste in prenzlauer berg. Interestingly enough their other campaign poster "MILFS against Merkel" has caused far greater outrage, angering feminists in berlin.

And in terms of expats not being able to vote, if you are an EU citizen you are allowed to vote in local elections and european elections. But tbh i wouldnt be too sad about not being able to vote....

Unknown said...

I have nothing against Die Partei & actually find their antics hilarious. I did not know about their history though- love it!

And yes, using the term "expats" is much too vague here. As the option is not open to us, I have not paid nearly enough attention.

Thanks for the feedback!

Jan said...

Ha! You never know what you are going to learn when you start reading a blog! ;) I was in Berlin about a month before Obama, and I was so bummed to have missed him--I heard it was amazing to have been there.

~ cheryl said...

I do remember that hope before Obama was elected and wish it hadn't faded so soon. I felt that we were going to get back on track as a nation and some things that have needed change for many years were going to slowly start to happen. Instead, we are a nation (AGAIN) immersed in rhetoric from both of our main political parties creating total inertia, Americans approval rating of politicians is at an all-time low, and we are becoming less important as a world power almost daily. I do not want to live in America "the land of wanting to be the world police" as Bush (both of them) wanted our country to be, I wanted to instead be a player in the world scene, taking care of Americans first and continuing to be the one many other countries turn to for humanitarian aid. Instead we are totally stuck in a sad state of politics 24/7 without leadership to change much of anything.

We're Back in Berlin Ja!

We're Back in Berlin Ja!
ebe & ian at Yak-toberfest 2008