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Pirates face 200 motions at party conference

The Local · 28 Apr 2012, 14:15

Published: 28 Apr 2012 14:15 GMT+02:00

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Some 1,500 members gathered in Neumünster for a two-day party conference Saturday, in which the outgoing leader, Marina Weisband, told fellow party members that they bear an “unbelievable responsibility” to change society.

The comments come just days after Martin Delius, parliamentary manager of the Pirates in the Berlin state government, told Der Spiegel magazine that the party’s rise was "as fast as" that of the Nazi party in the 1930s.

The 27-year old apologized and said he would not longer stand for election to lead the party nationally.

The weekend conference has some 200 motions to deal with, including basic questions dealing with the direction of the party, which was founded in 2006.

Party members voted to elect its national leaders on a yearly basis when a suggestion for elections every two years was rejected.

Recent polls show the Pirates gaining 13 percent of the vote nationwide, and they are expected to perform strongly the upcoming state elections in Schleswig-Holstein on May 6 and North Rhine-Westphalia on May 13.

Ruling coalition parties have avoided criticising the Pirates, seemingly unsure how seriously to take them. Chancellor Angela Merkel of the Christian Democratic Union described the Pirates as “an interesting occurance” and told the Leipziger Volkszeitung that the party “makes the political spectrum more multifaceted.”

Germany’s Health Minister and Free Democratic Party member Daniel Bahr said his party should set the example when it comes to transparency and dialogue about the internet – two key Pirate party themes.

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“We can cut a slice from the Pirates'” program, the minister said.

The opposition Social Democratic Party parliamentary leader Thomas Oppermann called the Pirates the “new, better liberals.” He told the Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung that the Pirates might be able to keep the FDP and the Left party out of the state parliaments in both upcoming regional elections.

DAPD/The Local/mw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

15:20 April 28, 2012 by Bruno53
With the looks of one in the picture, I think I can't take this "Pirate Party" seriously. They seem a bunch of immature clowns.
16:46 April 28, 2012 by The-ex-pat
Funny thing is, if they ever got into power, real power, would anything really change. After a year the first scandals of bed feathering, kick backs and favours would surface. They would be just the same as the mainstream parties. Corrupt at heart and telling us what to do.
16:48 April 28, 2012 by pepsionice
Just a suggestion to the Pirates. You have a chance to rack up ten percent of the German national vote. You need to pick some figure for the national head....who is a middle of the road character......can talk in a crowd.....has more than ten facts that they can repeat as Pirate-direction.....and represents the character of a crowd who really aren't happy with any of the current political parties in Germany. Surely, you've got one guy or gal....who can charm people enough and show a bit of intelligence. And no.....they don't have to dress fancy or wear 300-Euro shoes, or drink wine.
17:27 April 28, 2012 by taiwanluthiers
The political cycle: Some party currently in power is oppressing the people in some way, so some young freedom fighters rise up and overthrows the people in power. Only that not long after they overthrow the government, they went back to oppressing people again just like the previous government. It happens in Africa all the time.
22:31 April 28, 2012 by PierceArrow
The Pirate Party makes about as much sense as the Democrat Party in the USA.
09:35 April 29, 2012 by narfmaster
Wow, quite a lot of negative comments here! But why? The Pirate Party was created to address issues unique to the information age that we now live in. Issues like reform of patent law and copyright, data privacy, etc., are more important now than ever before due to the ease of moving, processing, and storing of data. Most importantly, this party represents the people, not the corporations, when debating new laws. Should someone be sent to jail for copying from a friend a song that was popular 45 years ago? The music industry thinks so, because they want to own the rights to media forever. On the other hand, drugs typically are off of patent after 7 years or so depending on where you live. In the case of the drugs, the rules encourage the creation of new drugs by promising money to the creator for a certain period of time but also making it limited so that there is incentive to create something new when the patent expires. In the music and film industry, there is no such limitation and thus no incentive to create something new/better. Worse, the enforcement of these laws is draconian, resulting in search and seizure as well as fines in the hundreds of thousands to millions and significant jail time. These issues are extremely important and become more so as more of our economy becomes information based and the rights of the people are forgotten for the benefit of the corporations.

Lastly, I'd like to say that if you vote based on a person's looks instead of a persons plans and ideals, then you are a petty excuse for a human being. Research the issues and the politicians thoroughly using the Internet, see what they've done in the past, then vote based on that instead of haircuts and tie colors.
12:12 April 29, 2012 by The-ex-pat
@narfmaster............Most importantly, this party represents the people, not the corporations, when debating new laws.

They are politicians, and as such they will tell you what you want to hear. Once they are in power they will come up with a hundred reasons why they cannot do what they said they will and this bunch would no different at all. Once all the backroom talks start away from the cameras and public eye they would soon change their collective tune. Look around you and see how many radical young political activists from the not to distant past attended rallies calling for all sorts of no nonsensical ideas, rioting in the streets and calling for the downfall of governments are now suit wearing clipped members of the political parties with the same thoughts and agendas as all those in power around them. This lot will be the same. Once in power the wild hair cuts, bohemian clothing and wild ideas will slowly disappear. Then the next thing to happen, The New Pirate Party will be formed because the Pirate party has betrayed it's roots.
13:03 April 29, 2012 by narfmaster
@The-ex-pat...You are right that politicians often promise a lot and do not deliver. This is exactly why it makes sense to investigate politicians' previous actions before voting for them. As far as the Pirate Party betraying its roots...it hasn't done that yet, so saying "don't vote for them because they may do it in the future" doesn't make a lot of sense. Let them do something wrong before denouncing them, let their actions speak. If they do wrong, then by all means, vote for somebody else! That's the whole point. They are another choice in a spectrum of politicians. If this were the USA, there would be only two parties to choose from, and thus no choice at all. The existence of the Pirate Party shows that in Germany new parties can spring up to replace the known to be corrupt old parties. Here, there is choice.
13:49 April 29, 2012 by Englishted
@Chango Mutney

Don't forget the woman in ill fitting jackets ,otherwise spot on.
15:10 April 29, 2012 by Navigator_B
The Pirate Party will eventually turn into part of the establishment with all the corporatism, conservatism, corruption  and militarism that goes with it. Just look at the Green Party. In the meantime the Pirates do serve the useful purpose of making the other parties think twice about taking the voters for granted. 
23:08 April 29, 2012 by OkieinBerlin
...while the truly talented with all the answers share their insights daily here, in Comments to The Local...
19:14 May 1, 2012 by Bigfoot76
Basing your opinion of a political party off of a random picture posted on a website shows how serious one takes politics. The Pirate Party is very popular with the younger generation and there for a large number of its supporters and advocates come from a wide array of lifestyles. Try actually going to the Pirate Party website and learning about them before judging them. There are plenty of pictures there of YOUR ideal looking political figures.
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