Tuesday, March 31, 2009

A fresh political party, born from the fist of the credit crunch


I live in a small country. One of the smallest in the world I suppose. The inhabitants of this island are around 300.000 and that's clearly not a very large number.
In spite of the smallness we have four "large" political parties here. One of them is to the right, two are supposed to be in the middle and one is to the left.
It seems to me that from the beginning of adulthood, people place themselves somewhere in this group of four. 
They decide who to follow and from then on there is no way back. It's "us" and "them". And the leader of the particular political party that they choose to follow becomes some kind of a guru. Everything that this particular person utters becomes "the truth" and everything that comes from the other parties is "bs". We have chosen a political soccer team and by that, simplified our lives to that extend.
And just like watching a game of soccer with shouting hooligans we can watch our politicians, standing there in parliament, trying to convince us about the quality of their ideas, but to me it has always seemed that most of the energy goes into badmouthing what "the other party" wants to say or do.
The primary purpose seems to be about winning followers and gaining power. Just like any cult.
After the crunch the left wing influence has grown remarkably. The right wing, or the Independence party, that has ruled the country for the past 18 years, get's the blame: "Under your ruling we got into this situation," people shout. But I must admit that I am rather lost in this. I don't honestly belive that it is their fault or in fact anyones fault. Just a complex chain of global events that lead to this downfall.
What is the situation in countries that have been ruled by left wing parties to this day? Or until the crunch? Is it any better? Does it make sense to blame the right wing policy or is the answer deeper? Do we possibly need to invent an completely fresh method of managing a country? A more active democracy, for example using the Internet as a tool to the means? How can we avoid corruption and minimize the effects of human defects?
Could this be possible here in Iceland? We are more like a clan of people than a nation.
The answer lies with a new party called the citizen movement or x-o. It's main goal is to get into parliament, only to make rules and changes that create a more active democratic participation from the common Jane and Joe and outrule a lot of the chances of corruption.
I hope that something good can come out of this. You would think that such a small clan should be able to create change, faster than a big one, but time will tell...
I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

New Primeminister

We have a new priminister now. Her name is Johanna. Her hair is white.

Before this weekend felt like being a kid, home alone with the flu and then mom came back.

I think we feel a bit safer now.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The revolution is on

Ok... this is the day that Obama turned to president and this is the first day of the real revolution in Iceland.

The protests have been going on since noon. People have lit a bonfire in front of the parliament, police is using tear gas, everything up in flames. This nation has not protested so hard since 1949 when Iceland signed up with Nato.

We want the government out. We want new managers in key financial institutions. And we want to vote again.

Since this thing, this credit crunch happend, no one has resigned, no one has said they were sorry. All they can say is "We understand your need to state an opinion and we think it's ok." Horrible arrogance that seems only an invitation to more anger and frustration. Some of them add "I used to protest myself when I was young".

But it's not just youngsters protesting. About 2000+ were there today. People of all ages and from all different layers of society.

I predict that if we don't get new elections asap... some people in government will get hurt. I think that something will be clear in February and that serious change will take place in March.

you should be able to find videos from the protest on these pages

www.visir.is
www.ruv.is
www.mbl.is

Read this

Iris in the Huffington Post

Monday, January 12, 2009

A little post from the host

I have been lazy recently. So probably my postings here will be like the truly honest men in this world-few and far between them... but occasionally I will post something. Like today for example.

I've heard some foreigners say that Icelanders seem clueless now. Like a lamb just about to be slaughtered, not knowing what is coming... but then I hear the people here in Iceland reply that we are so small, such a small nation... that our power to do and change stuff is much greater than the power of those who live in bigger nations.

Personally I have no idea what is coming but I know the law of cause and effect and that I can truly do something and create some change, depending on what I choose to do and to whom I talk.

One of the things I want to do is to sign up in a political party that will soon be created. The only goal of this party is to get into parliament to restore the democracy that we all want to live under. The one we chose so many years ago before this thing started to revolve around personal gain and power of a few individuals, their friends and relatives, who have shared these seats for decades.

I want to bring down this northern Sicily and create a nation that can be a reminder to others that anything should be possible... if there is a will, there is a way.

Got involved with a group of entrepreneurs and it people last Saturday. We want to think up some good ideas and make them happen. Making things happen is good fun.

Must admit though that at the same time that I write this, I feel a little worried about the future. These things happening in Gaza and the tension between Russia and Ukrania... I don't know. I worry that the law of cause will lead to some destructive effect if we are not careful and if we forget to learn from past mistakes.

Friday, November 14, 2008

The fourth cod war

Saturday, November 8, 2008

We protest!

Ok...

The situation is getting both surreal and chaotic at the same time. People are protesting every Saturday and the number of protestants grows by hundreds as the weeks pass. But it's not really clear to me what is being protested against. A bit like a case of the windmills. Protesting against everything at the same time.
The leader of the national bank, corruption, dysfunctional politicians, dysfunctional government, high interests, a currency that seems to be worth about as much as monopoly money...

And the government is silent. There are no concrete answers about anything. Nothing is clear. There has been no real drawing of the worst case scenario and there is no real picture of what would be the best thing for us to do in this situation; How much money we need to dig us out of those problems and how this is going to directly affect the common Joe? No answers.

Solid businesses are going down because they don't get cash to secure the stash and even though the town is full of tourists willing to spend money, shop owners can not get new goods into their shops... everything is frozen. Meanwhile a few hundred loose their jobs every week and unemployment is predicted to rise to 10% in the next year. This means that about 18.000 people will be unemployed out of the 180.000 who are on the job market.

Personally I don't really know what to make of all this and I am not sure about what to do about it either. This feels like a waiting period, everything is still in the air, nothing is clear, a whirlwind of snowflakes in a ball. We have to wait for them to fall down in order to be able to make the next move, or even get an idea of what the next move will be.

I picture a Scandinavian Murmansk during the next ten years... but truly hope for something better. And meanwhile I wonder where the exit is.

ps.

Tonight I met a guy who has just arrived from Nepal. He told me that everyone in Nepal were aware of the bad situation we have up here... Now what does THAT mean? :)