imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

German pirates set sail for change

by The Daly Pirate Sunday, Apr. 01, 2012 at 3:28 PM
mbatko1@hotmail.com

Direct democracy storms parliaments

German pirates set sail for change

The Daly Pirate Direct democracy storms parliaments

28 Mar 2012 12:25 | by John W. Daly in Münster | Filed in Internet Facebook Germany

1 Comment

3



Last weekend will find itself an entry in political history over here in Germany. In the state of Saarland, the country’s Pirate Party (Piratenpartei) won 7.4 percent of votes and entered the federal state parliament. Up north, the state party conference for North Rhine-Westphalia elected 42 candidates for the upcoming state elections and found a successful end, after a dragging start – more than 150 party members wanted to be voted onto the candidate list.

In Saarland, the Piratenpartei not only entered state parliament after running for election the very first time, but it also managed to attract thousands of non-voters and first-time voters. In the same election, Germany’s free democrats, the FDP, suffered staggering losses. The FDP dropped from 9.2 percent to a mere 1.2 percent, far below the five percent threshold necessary to enter a state parliament.

On Saturday, nearly four hours were spent discussing and voting the election rules; a further nine hours later party members had voted in a team of four top candidates. The following day was spent screening the remaining candidates for list spots five to 42.

Press reports were a mixed bag. On the one side, journalists were scratching their noggins and coming up with various ideas about how the Piratenpartei managed to jump from zero to 7.4 percent the first time the party stood for election in the economically decrepit Saarland. On the other side, reporters were wondering how the hell party members were able to make a rational decision on who to elect on a list for the upcoming elections in North Rhine Westphalia. After all, the candidates running for the top team only had three minutes to present themselves, and one minute for the following spots.

Large portions of the press appear rather clueless to the inner workings of the Piratenpartei. Criticisms of the voting procedure of the North Rhine-Westphalia’s party conference was a good example. The limited, three to one minute timeframe candidates had to present themselves led a lot of outsiders to raise the question how rational decisions on who to vote for can be made.

Established political parties do not comprehend the grass-roots process of the party and are bewildered by the recent successes. Most politicians repeatedly stress they use Facebook and Twitter, are net-savvy and the like. However, they are entirely missing the point.

What is overlooked is that the greatest part of decision-making in the Piratenpartei is internet-based. Party members can discuss and make amendments to papers and proposals in real-time, using a platform called Liquid Feedback. Party members, as well as those wishing to run for any office, can create an online profile on the party’s wiki site. They are encouraged to do so. Members can ask candidates questions online and candidates answer them online. Twitter is also used – Pirates tweet to and fro enthusiastically. Party members can inform themselves before any conference takes place – instantly.

Thanks to the networked organisation, a short timeframe is all that is needed for candidates to present themselves at party conferences. Party members vote on whether or not to pose further questions. This seldom takes place, yet will definitely occur if the candidate is controversial. This happened during the state party conference. One candidate running for the election list for the federal state had to answer questions concerning anti-Semitic remarks he made in a mailing-list – he received no votes. Another member was accused of bullying his peers in the party’s local group in Cologne, only to face a similar fate.

This networked structure and organisation allows the Piratenpartei to involve each and every member in the democratic process, regardless of space-time constraints, making it possible to apply crowdsourced intelligence. It enables the Piratenpartei to fulfill its ideal of Basisdemokratie: grass-roots politics allowing everyone to be involved in any process. All members can vote for candidates, without delegates.

Apart from the networked nature of the Piratenpartei, the political topics central to the party also attract new members and voters. Topics include civil rights both on and offline, net politics, social justice and egalitarianism, education policies and the involvement of the greater whole in the democratic process.

The existing social system is heavily criticised. The so-called Hartz IV social benefits system is viewed as being too little for too many, and as imposing restrictions on civil rights and liberties of Germany’s unemployed, the weakest members of the state.

The Piratenpartei offers a solution – the bedingungsloses Grundeinkommen (BGE), a system providing an unconditionial basic income. This is to be financed through the redistribution of wealth and an overhauled tax system, allowing all citizens to participate in their pursuit of happiness and opportunity. Social exclusion due to economic constraints would be negated.

Germany’s industry manufactures its products in an utterly efficient manner, allowing the country to produce high-quality goods for low costs. Higher efficiency in production also means far less jobs across various sectors, creating a systemic problem. After all, who will buy products, when hardly anyone makes them? Thanks to rapidly increasing automation, what was once a more or less philosophical question is now relevant.

An unconditional basic income would provide citizens the means to not only participate in society as consumers, but also the opportunity to actively create and produce goods, be they tangible or intangible. Freeing citizens to create and produce would furthermore provide a basis for future wealth. This all stands in stark contrast to a benefits system creating dependency. As a side-effect, it would also raise demand and consumption in Germany itself, improving the major exporter’s rather one-sided trade balance.

As for net politics and civil liberties, the Piratenpartei has established parties running and making their voices heard all over the place. One of the greatest boons for the party was the utterly inept and uninformed handling of the digital sphere by established parties. In recent years, various laws were proposed either as parts of election campaigns or due to lobbying, which would have drastically curtailed freedom of use in the internet and civil liberties pertaining to informational self-determination. Germany’s digital natives went up in arms, further strengthening the base of potential voters of the Piratenpartei.

One prime example was a proposal to block access to sites containing child pornography with a stop sign – instead of deleting such content and prosecuting the purveyors of such material. The proposal was also superfluous, as there are already existing processes in place.

There are many other reasons for the success of the Piratenpartei, such as an erosion of trust in established parties and politicians to deal with current and future problems in the Information Age we are now all living in. Whatever the case, the attractiveness of Germany’s Piratenpartei is constantly growing, as well as its member base.

Open, transparent processes and the desire to apply these to the political system as a whole, alongside a grass-roots democratic process using networked methods and platforms allowing people to participate in as high a degree they wish in finding political solutions to complex problems, will remain the driving forces for the party’s increasing popularity.

And this is why the author became a member a month ago.

See also

EU contemplating porn filters

State trojan will see heads roll in Germany

Pirate Party founder hits out at SOPA

Movie spending on the rise despite piracy fears

You might like:

Apple wastes 0 million in dead man's revenge

BT drags Google into court over Android patents

How In tel lost its SeaMicro slaves

TSA's wet dream to hit streets of New York



Fuel shortage strengthens case for electric cars

Cops can crack a smartphone in minutes

Related topics

Germany, Pirate Party, Facebook, Twitter

Comments (rss feed)

asdf - 28 Mar 19:55

Oh come on, admit you just joined because they have the hottest chicks ;)

(uneducated readers may google for e.g. Marina Weisband or Jasmin Maurer)

No seriously, there has been a gap in the political spectrum for quite a while now. The FDP, also named the Liberals, haven't acted as they should for too long, instead they are just a bunch of neo-liberal lobby-controlled muppets, they make ridiculous suggestions, and the fact that two high ranking members were found to have faked their doctorate thesis (a bit too much copy+paste) was just icing on the cake. The FDP is a completely useless party, we all were better off if they just dissolved.

In the past the liberal voters who were appalled by the FDP either went to other parties like the Green party or didn't vote at all, but it seems a lot of they seem to have found a new home for their opinion in the Pirate party.



Read more: http://news.techeye.net/internet/german-pirates-set-sail-for-change#ixzz1qijHCi7u

Report this post as:

Local News

Marshall Tuck’s racist dog whistle O27 5:01AM

Marshall Tuck’s ethnocentrism contradicts Californian values O27 4:32AM

Contra Costa-Hawkins O25 3:48AM

Debunking Some Anti-Prop 10 Propaganda O12 6:56AM

Why Should California Choose De Leon Over Feinstein? O10 9:55PM

Change Links September 2018 posted S02 10:22PM

More Scandals Rock Southern California Nuke Plant San Onofre A30 11:09PM

Site Outage Friday A30 3:49PM

Change Links August 2018 A14 1:56AM

Setback for Developer of SC Farm Land A12 11:09PM

More problems at Shutdown San Onofre Nuke J29 10:40PM

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 8:27PM

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 7:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 7:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 11:26PM

Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! J11 6:58AM

Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California M31 5:20AM

Change Links June 2018 posted M28 7:41AM

The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years M22 8:01PM

Unity Archive Project M21 9:42AM

Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi M17 10:22PM

CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police M10 9:08PM

Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies M10 8:57PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

President Trump: Hurricane Relief Should not Pay Puerto Rico Debt N14 8:54PM

94 Of Rick Scott's, Brian Kemp's, the Mississippi GOP's & Other Republican Campaign Crime N13 9:42PM

30 Of Brian Kemp's Felonious Racist Vote Suppression Crimes N13 8:42PM

Help translation of From Islam To Womanism book on IndieGoGo N13 12:04PM

COP 21, 25, 32, de l'écocide organisé N11 11:45PM

fbi & fmj are ' Lord of the Flies ' N11 8:26PM

Parangon d'une grande infestation N11 12:03AM

Video: Beautiful Country Burn Again, 39 min N10 10:19PM

OBAMA WERE POW'S LEFTBEHIND IN AFGHANISTAN IRAQ AND LIBYA N08 7:57PM

OBAMA WERE POWS LEFT BEHIND IN AFGAHNISTAN IRAQ AND LIBYA N08 7:29PM

DID BARACK OBAMA LEAVE POWS BEHIND IN AFGAHNISTAN IRAQ AND LIBYA N08 6:43PM

DID BARACK OBAMA LEAVE POWS BEHIND IN AFGHANISTAN IRAQ AND LIBYA N08 5:50PM

Paraphysique de l'Etat d'urgence N08 4:24AM

Republican Vote Fraud Reached A New Level In Midterms N07 7:50PM

Lobotomisation populationnelle N07 7:28AM

Texas Finally Ousts Culberson! N07 4:43AM

Israel Quit UNESCO, Um-Shmum, Make Ben-Gurion Proud! N06 7:37PM

Mafia City Hack Mod Generator - Generate 15.000 Gold N06 2:04AM

Ronald L. Havner & The Sleazy Corporate Whores @PublicStorage RAPED ME! N05 10:25PM

Trumponomics and Wall Street Rejoices N05 11:36AM

8 GOP Candidates For Governor Want Executions To Continue In Their States N05 10:11AM

Paraphysique de l'hybris pirocratie N05 7:40AM

Pity Yitzhak Rabin Wasn’t Israel’s Trump! N03 11:01PM

Une machine c'est crétin N03 7:45AM

Nuke Plants Cause Excess CancerDeaths When Running, Rates Decline When They Shut Down N01 10:20PM

Right-wing Populism: A Wave of Nostalgia N01 11:02AM

Paraphysique du profit de l'horreur N01 8:11AM

Trump: A Disaster For Animals As Well As People O31 10:25PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy