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Reykjavik Election - Best Party

by ATinNM Sun May 30th, 2010 at 06:51:18 AM EST

On May 29th there will be an election for the Reykjavik City council.  

The new Best Party is contesting the election and, if the polls are accurate, will capture seven of the fifteen seats being contested.

OK, what's the Best Party?

frontpaged - Nomad


Iceland's Ire Helps Comic's Campaign Take Fire

Mr. Gnarr, a popular radio host, conceptual artist and comedian, is poised to win Saturday's municipal election here.

With its special brand of absurdist nihilism, and under a slogan that loosely translates to "Whatever Works!" Mr. Gnarr's Best Party is tapping into the national protest mood.

Residents of this nation of 320,000 were incensed when a recent parliamentary report exposed the close relationships that existed between politicians and the brash bankers who fueled a colossal credit bubble that laid waste to the country's economy in 2008.

Now, many are embracing Mr. Gnarr's campaign as a way to send a message that they will no longer tolerate the politics-as-usual that led to the financial disaster.

Iceland Review Online reports support is slipping but:

According to the new survey, the Best Party is currently supported by 40.9 percent of voters in Reykjavík, which would result in seven council members out of a possible 15, Fréttabladid reports.

One week ago, a survey by Fréttabladid and Stöd 2 indicated that the Best Party would earn eight representatives on Reykjavík City Council--a clear majority.

However, the Best Party is still far ahead of other parties running for seats in the council. The runner-up is the Independence Party with 26.7 percent of votes and four council members, albeit a 5.6 percent increase since the last poll.

The Best Party's campaign song is a big hit

   
Við viljum borg sem flott sem er hrein og hlý

Og hágæða stöff sem að vit er í.

Ekki meira blöff, borgin mín hún þarf að vera töff

Við viljum gosbrunna, lestir og alls konar dýr.

Ekki glerjaðar hallir og steinsteyptar brýr.

Ekki meira af því gefum fávitunum frí.

Við erum BEST.

Bestasti flokkurinn.

Best fyrir Reykjavík.

Borgin sú er engu lík.

Kerfið er súrt

Tími til að lofta út

Tökum nú til

Tími fyrir kaflaskil

Gef mér B, gef mér E, gef mér S, gef mér T.

Gefum ráðhústökufólkinu verðskuldað hlé.

Látum horngrítisskepnurnar hýrast í Húsdýragarðinum.

Við erum BEST.

Bestasti flokkurinn.

Best fyrir Reykjavík.

Borgin sú er engu lík.

Kerfið er súrt

Tími til að lofta út

Hey tökum nú til

Það er tími fyrir þáttaskil.

Þegar þú kúldrast inn í kjörklefanum

með krumpaðan seðilinn í hnefanum

mátt´ekki veðja á vitlausan hest.

Veldu okkur, það er best.

Við erum best

Bestasti flokkurinn

Best fyrir Reykjavík

Betri en þessi liðnu lík

Kerfið er súrt

Komum öll og loftum út

Hey stökkvum nú til

stokk upp þessi fokking spil

Við erum Best!

Kæru samborgarar.

Nú þarf hver Reykvíkingur að líta sér nær, skoða hjarta sitt

og spurja sig, fjölskyldu sína og jafnvel trúnaðarvini

vil ég bjarta framtíð með Besta flokknum eða vil ég tortíma Reykjavík?

Ókeypis handklæði á öllum sundstöðum!

Ísbjörn í Húsdýragarðinn!

Allskonar fyrir aumingja!

Disneyland í Vatnsmýri!

Fíkniefnalaust Alþingi 2020!

Sjálfbært gegnsæi!

Út með Bjarna Ben og inn með Einar Ben!

Tollahlið á Seltjarnarnes!

Fella niður allar skuldir!

Ókeypis í Hljómskálagarðinn!

Fækka öllum jólasveinum niður í einn!

Við sættum okkur ekki við lélegt vegna þess að við viljum fá BEST!

We want a city that`s cuddly and clean and cool

And topnotch stuff as a general rule

Stop the usual bluffs doing better isn`t all that tough

Fountains, wild animals and electric trains

No more concrete and steel messing up our brains

Send it all back let the imbeciles pack

We are the best

The bestest of parties

Best for Reykjavik

Best city of every week

Things have gone sour

We`ve come to the clean-out hour

The message is plain

It`s time for historic change

Gimme a B gimme an E gimme an S gimme a T

Tell the squatters in charge that it`s time to leave

The blathering loons should be given a home in the city Zoo

We are the best

The bestest of parties

Best for Reykjavik

Best city of every week

Things have gone sour

We`ve come to the clean-out hour

Hey! It`s true and it`s plain

It`s time for major change

All by yourself on election day

The ballot looking lifeless and a little gray

You have to choose, it`s all such a mess

Vote for us, we`re the Best

Fellow citizens, the time has come for everyone in Reykjavík to look inside their hearts, to discuss with their family and friends. Do I want a bright future with the Best party? Or do I want Reykjavik destroyed?

Free towels in all swimming pools

A polar bear for the Reykjavik Zoo

Allkinds for the unfortunates

Disneyland in the Vatnsmýri area

A drug-free parliament by 2020

Sustainable transperancy

Away with Bj**i Ben and in with Einar Ben

Tollbooths on the border with Seltjarnarnes

Do away with all debt

Free access to Hljómskálagarðurinn

Economise, we only need one santa

And, and, we will not accept the mediocre

Because we want the Best!

They have a website but danged if I know what they are saying.  (My exceedingly small grasp of Icelandic withered 40 years ago.)  

With 26.1 percent undecided this thing could go anywhere.

Display:
May this ignite an international trend!

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 04:37:36 PM EST
I agree with the proviso: if they win a majority of seats they are going to have to govern.  If they screw it up there's the danger of serious alienation of the voters from the whole idea of government.


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 05:14:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
If they screw it up there's the danger of serious alienation of the voters from the whole idea of government.

Can the voters be any more alienated from the idea of government?

By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 05:19:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes.

You're the one who keeps saying that economically speaking, we're in the early 1930s.

It can still go downhill far and fast from here.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 05:27:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thank you.

The problem that I have with parties and groups that are oppositional to a fault is that the absence of an effective alternative gets people trapped in the idea of fighting the "power."  

Which if left to go on long enough serves to delegitimate government in the the eyes of most people.  And when you have the glue that is provided by a systems of laws begin to break down, then you have problems.  Without the existence of an autonomous state to regulate conflicts in society, what ends up happening is lassiez-faire, a paradise of the strong over the weak. That's why political movements that base their success on challenging the power of the state, instead of capturing it, are so dangerous. The provoke disorder, and the public abhors a vacuum like that, they want to feel safe.  So they turn to whoever can fill that hole, and restore order.

This is why change in the system is much less dangerous that a change of the system.  This is why trying to use the means that are available to affect change is better than getting all self righteous and burning everything on down.

And I'll give my consent to any government that does not deny a man a living wage-Billy Bragg

by ManfromMiddletown (manfrommiddletown at lycos dot com) on Sun May 30th, 2010 at 01:33:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
If the Icelanders are going to repel the IMF and the rest of that Neo-Classical Trash they are going to need to stand firm, together.  Half the population of Iceland lives in Reykjavik.  

Who wins, and the political "message" that sends, is a Big Deal.


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 05:43:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
While waiting for someone, somewhere, to post the results ...

There is an increasing number of parliament members in Iceland deciding against the Icesave-agreement, according to the news source Bloomberg.  34 members are currently expected to vote against the proposition.

If true, the deal is dead.

Go ICELAND!!!  Go, Go, GO!!

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 04:49:31 PM EST
The wavy Icelandic flag applet went away.

:-(

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 05:03:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Because I'm bored waiting for results

Broadcast on Iceland TV April 2009.


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 09:49:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The folks at Reykjavik Grapevine are live blogging the election.  

So far no news.  The polls close Real Soon Now.


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 04:59:36 PM EST
Alright, now let's get this party started. Vísir is reporting this year's turnout as 55,366 voters, or 64.54% of eligible voters. In 2006, it was 54,863 voters, which was 64.8% of eligible voters at that time. So pretty much the same deal. That's kind of a let-down, considering all the fuss every talking head in the city has been making about how the average Reykjavíkingur has had it up to HERE with the same old politics, and they will NOT take this lying down. Well, I guess we'll know soon enough if how the city voted changed in the last four years, even if the numbers didn't.



She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 06:09:48 PM EST
Note:  Unless stated otherwise all quotes are from The Reykjavik Grapevine.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 06:10:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Right out of the gate, The Best Party is leading strong. RÚV reports that of the 21,017 ballots that have been counted so far, The Best Party has gotten 8,000 of them. Holy damn. But wait - the Independence Party are right on their heels, with 7,000 votes. The Progressives are so far with a comically paltry 13 votes. Thirteen. That's right.

Now before you go dancing in the streets, historian and political analyst Stefán Pálsson made a good point earlier on. He has predicted that the Best Party would start strong, but then slowly sink. This is because, Stefán says, the Leftist-Greens and the Social Democrats are going to have a lot of strike-throughs on their ballots - people crossing out the names of party candidates they don't want to see - and those ballots are always counted last.

Pretty exciting start either way!



She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 06:34:54 PM EST
This is extremely cool.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.
by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 06:52:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Isn't it?

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 06:56:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Here is the platform of the Best Party:

  1. To help the homes in the country

  2. Improve live quality of the less fortunate

  3. Stop corruption

  4. Equality

  5. Increase transparency

  6. Effective democracy

  7. Drop all debt

  8. Free bus rides for students and losers

  9. Free dental services for children and losers

  10. Free swimming for everyone and free towels

  11. Drag those responsible for the economic collapse to court

  12. Complete equality of the sexes

  13. Listen more to women and old people

[Yes I should put this in as an Update.  Having problems getting it to format correctly.  So I put it in as a comment.]

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 07:03:27 PM EST
Alright, so the different candidates are speaking to the news about what the first numbers mean.

Mayor and Independence Party candidate Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir has said that they've received more support than the opinion polls predicted. Social Democrat Dagur Eggertsson said that the Best Party's support shows that the people want change in politics, regardless of their party affiliation.

YAWN. Thank God former Sugarcube, current Ghostigital guy and #2 on the Best Party's list Einar Örn Benediktsson was on hand. He told reporters he hopes for a clean majority, because then the next four years will be a lot of fun. He said most of the candidates in his party have kids and none of them are idiots. And they intend to do away with corruption in the city.

I'm hoping that fighting corruption to Einar Örn will mean a lot of shouting and blowing trumpets. Sure, that might not change anything, really, but hey - couldn't hurt, right?

Note: Apparently the Independence Party ran Reykjavik for decades and have been swinging in and out of control since.  They established a governing motto of "Scratch our backs or take a hike" that the other parties have followed when they got control.  

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 07:09:40 PM EST
H'mmmm

OK, just a couple of things to point out here.

First of all, the first figures, you may have noticed, are in nice round thousands. This was not some incredible coincidence, but rather because the "first numbers" counting is extremely roughly shod. It's basically guesstimation mixed with rounding out numbers mixed with reading goat entrails. Having said that, historically speaking, the first numbers don't usually deviate too drastically from the final outcome, but you may have noticed that this year is a bit different. So maybe there'll be surprises.

Also, RÚV appears to be having some serious technical difficulties right now. Their website doesn't even load half the time, and their extra special super Elections 2010 page looks like this:

This is the state broadcasting system we're talking about here. When their page does load, they're reporting that there've been a lot of cross-throughs on ballots, and that newer figures probably won't be up until about one in the morning.

Or in 'bout an hour and a half.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 07:55:45 PM EST
"Fuck it, just guess."

I think we've solved the mystery of the Icelandic banking crisis cause. ;)

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 08:01:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Good timing for me.

I was able to finish baking the potatoes and cooking the steak; The Doctor baked a cake and made the salad previously. We have dined well and drank so-so, a Trader Joe's "Vienna Style" lager to which Ms. Helen would, no doubt, wrinkle her pretty little nose at.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 08:49:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
"Fuck it, just guess."
Well, considering
With its special brand of absurdist nihilism, and under a slogan that loosely translates to "Whatever Works!" Mr. Gnarr's Best Party is tapping into the national protest mood.


By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun May 30th, 2010 at 02:37:03 AM EST
[ Parent ]
New numbers are in from Reykjavík.

43,408 ballots of about 55,000 have been counted. The Best Party still has six seats, with 16,054 votes, and the Independence Party still has five, with 11,990, but the Social Democrats took a hit, and now have three seats and 8,054 votes. The Leftist-Greens have one seat, and 2,952 votes. Still no other parties in, and there likely won't be. The Liberal Party can be declared legally dead in Reykjavík, and the Progressives have been shown the door.

Still seeing a Best Party/Social Dem thing happen here. It's been brought up though that Jón Gnarr has been supportive of conservative politicians in the past, so really anything can happen I guess.

In any event, Leftist-Green MP Árni Þór Sigurðsson had some interesting things to say about these elections, writing on his blog:

"I can make no mistake that political parties need to examine themselves, and review their works and their platforms. I've noticed that some politicians have taken these results so far to be a victory or even an amazing performance. I think it would be a better idea for party representatives in certain municipalities and in the countryside to show humility in the face of the judgement of the people, and simply admit that these results are a call to a change in emphasis and performance."




She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 10:04:05 PM EST
Wikipedia entry for the Social Democratic Alliance and the Left-Green Movement.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Sat May 29th, 2010 at 10:07:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Iceland Review Online: Daily News from Iceland, Current Affairs, Business, Politics, Sports, Culture
The Best Party (Besti flokkurinn), a new political party founded by comedian Jón Gnarr, won the municipal election in Reykjavík yesterday with six representatives on the City Council and 34.7 percent of votes.

Only 660 votes separated the Best Party and the Independence Party of Mayor Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir, which earned five seats on the council with 33.6 percent of votes, visir.is reports.

The Social Democrats earned three seats on the council and the Left-Greens one. Other parties didn't receive enough votes to secure them representatives on the council. The counting of ballots ended shortly before 4 am last night.

A UK footnote.....

UK Monster Raving Loony Party


I well remember hearing a spokesman on the radio after they had amazingly won a seat in a local government election. The serious BBC man asked him:

"And what does this success mean for your party?"

to which he replied

"We've lost all credibility!"



"The future is already here -- it's just not very evenly distributed" William Gibson
by ChrisCook (cojockathotmaildotcom) on Sun May 30th, 2010 at 08:00:10 AM EST
The problem with being a "Joke Party" is if you win, you have to govern.  I hope Jón Gnarr and the other new members of the council has their stuff together because Besti flokkurinn is now running Reykjavik.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Sun May 30th, 2010 at 10:55:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
We're about to find out. My view is they could hardly do worse than their predecessors. As an experiment, it has the advantage that failure will be greeted by 'I told you so' and forgotten. But if it succeeded, there might be many more Best parties to come, in different parts of Europe.

And as the earth undergoes a polar switch, economically, from west to east (a certainty that our 'professional' leaders have absolutely no clue how to deal with), we may see a new politics emerge. It's not so damn difficult. There are plenty of laws already, the civil service runs everything anyway, the only point of politicians any more is that someone has to regulate the regulators. A task at which the present professional politicians appear totally inept.  

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Sun May 30th, 2010 at 01:23:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The potential is exciting.

If for no other reason than I can see Bestiflokkurinn deciding, "To hell with it," striking a coin inscribed with "$3.6 billion," and giving it to Great Britain   or, perhaps, charging ALCOA $10,000,000 per ship port fee, charging land, road, and business taxes on everything they can think of, and things like that.

Because the Best Party isn't "serious" they don't have to follow Serious™ public policies down the rat hole to poverty and oppression.  

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sun May 30th, 2010 at 03:00:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Precisely. Imagination is no bad thing, empathy neither.

In any case, I always retain an image of a story described by Stafford Beer in 'Decision & Control' (1966). During WWII, new bombers were shipped from the States to Europe via Greenland. Mechanics were thus needed on Greenland. Lack of manpower lead them to teach locals to be mechanics. The military planned that the locals would need to be trained for twice as long as stateside recruits. In fact the locals learned in half the time.

For recruits it was the rigid system of learning part numbers and how the parts fitted together in what order. The Inuit took one look at a piston engine and said "we know all about seals".

I'm not saying the Best Party knows "all about seals", but they certainly understand the wrong way to handle "seals". That might be enough to push them in the right direction.

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Sun May 30th, 2010 at 03:53:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The status quo is a strong attractor.  It depends on the commitment of the Best Party to actual change as opposed to Change© - in the Obama definition.  ;-)

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Mon May 31st, 2010 at 12:07:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Great line!

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Sun May 30th, 2010 at 01:24:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Reykjavik Grapevine - Life, Travel and Entertainment in Iceland / Read Article
15:28: The final results of Reykjavík city elections are in. Of a possible 15
seats on city council, Jón Gnarr's Best Party has won six, the
Independence Party won five, the Social Democrats won three, and the
Leftist-Greens won one.

There was only a difference of 660 votes between the conservatives and
Best Party, but this gave the latter the edge to get an extra man in. At
the moment, the Best Party is currently in a meeting to decide what the
next step is going to be.

Former mayor Hanna Birna Kristjándóttir was more than happy to point out
the victories her party made in well-established conservative
strongholds throughout the country, although the party took its shares
of damages as well, such as in Reykjavík. The Social Democrats also got
hit pretty hard, nationally speaking. The Leftist-Greens more or less
held onto their own, but lost a seat in the capital. The Progressives
fared worst of all in the capital area, only managing to get one of
theirs in town council in Kópavogur and Álftanes.

Gnarr isn't yet giving away who he intends to form a majority coalition
with, but has said he's willing to work with everybody. Social Democrat
Dagur B. Eggertsson said that it would be a long shot working with the
Independence Party, and Hanna Birna said that while her party could
conceivably form a coalition with the Social Dems to form a majority,
that wouldn't necessarily be in harmony with the will of the voters.

Talks on forming a majority, or an announcement of what form that
majority will take, are still pending. (PN)


"The future is already here -- it's just not very evenly distributed" William Gibson
by ChrisCook (cojockathotmaildotcom) on Sun May 30th, 2010 at 11:48:54 AM EST
To compare with:

Reykjavík - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

In the May 2006 elections the electorate could choose between five different parties, three of which had formed the R-list. The Independence Party obtained 7 members of the council, and thus failed to gain overall control, but together with the Progressive Party, and its one council member, they were able to form a new majority in the council which took over in June 2006. In October 2007 a new majority was formed on the council, consisting of members of the Progressive Party (1), the Social Democratic Alliance (4), the Left-Greens (2) and the F-list (1) (liberals and independents), after controversy regarding REI, a subsidiary of OR, the city's energy company. However three months later the leader of the F-list formed a new majority together with the Independence Party. Ólafur F. Magnússon, the leader of the F-list, was elected mayor on 24 January 2008, and in March 2009 the Independence Party was due to appoint a new mayor. This changed once again on 14 August 2008 when the fourth majority of the season was formed, when the Independence Party and the Progressive party took over again, with Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir becoming mayor.

So:
Best Party 6(+6)
Independence party 5 (-2)
Social Democratic Alliance 3 (-1)
Left-Greens 1 (-1)
Progressives 0 (-1)
F-list 0 (-1)

And apparently free-for-all when it comes to coalitions.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Sun May 30th, 2010 at 12:21:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Offbeat Party Wins Iceland Vote - WSJ.com

REYKJAVIK--Voters here blew a loud raspberry at Iceland's political establishment Saturday, handing victory in the capital's municipal elections to an upstart political party that ran a blatantly satirical, humor-based campaign.

After promising a polar bear for the Reykjavik zoo and making other unorthodox proposals, the six-month-old Best Party won 34.7% of the vote, securing six of the 15 seats on the city council. It was closely followed by the Independent Party--the traditional powerhouse in the city--with 33.6% of votes and five seats. The Social Democratic Alliance, which currently governs Iceland in coalition with the Left-Green Movement, won three seats while its coalition partner was left with one.

The win for the Best Party--whose slogan loosely translates to "Whatever Works!"--puts its leader Jon Gnarr, Iceland's best-known comedian, in a strong position to become mayor of Reykjavik, a post that is sometimes a launching pad for national politics. Although the Bests are two seats short of an absolute majority, longstanding enmity among the other parties will make it hard for them to agree on an alternative candidate.



"The future is already here -- it's just not very evenly distributed" William Gibson
by ChrisCook (cojockathotmaildotcom) on Sun May 30th, 2010 at 01:08:37 PM EST
Gnarr's comments.
Gnarr said he had not yet decided who to work with on the new council.

"The ball's in our court, I'm just going to have a good look at it and contemplate it and then do something beautiful with it," he told RUV.

"Nobody needs to be frightened of the Best Party because it's the best. And we only want what is best - if we didn't, we'd be called the Worst Party or the Bad Party."

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Sun May 30th, 2010 at 04:09:07 PM EST
I find it strange that the Best Party was able to reach it's majority without increasing the voting population, as it were.  In 2006 64% (and change) of registered voters engaged; in 2010 64% (and change) of voters engaged.  

Reykjavik Grapevine |  Best Party and Social Democrats in Coalition Talks .

The Best Party and the Social Democrats are currently in talks over the formation of a new majority coalition for Reykjavík city hall.

After announcing a "secret meeting" on their Facebook page, the Best Party later announced they decided at this meeting to enter into coalition talks with the Social Democrats. Vísir reports, however, that Dagur B. Eggertsson - who led the list for the Social Democrats running for city council - has not seen the HBO television series The Wire. Having seen The Wire has been one of Best Party chairman Jón Gnarr's conditions for forming a coalition with anybody, but he told reporters that Dagur is excused, because his not seeing The Wire had been beyond his control.

It should also be noted that Jón Gnarr has set as a condition of a coalition that he become mayor.

So he's going to go through with it.

Iceland Weather Report | Dissecting the Best Party's appeal.

The success of the Best Party is simply hard to pin down. Part of their appeal is the postmodern irony they suddenly bring to the political arena, which is just perfect for highlighting the vacuousness of the traditional political slogans. By promising the people things they will never be able to follow through on, like a toll booth on Seltjarnarnes [affluent Reykjavík suburb] and a white-collar prison [see here], they really bring into sharp focus the absurdity of many of the traditional political promises. They've shaken things up, made people think. And that is good.

Jón Gnarr is a chapter unto himself.

As I mentioned in the last post he has seemed completely bemused by the Best Party's success, although with him it's always hard to know if he's acting or not. What has been particularly refreshing, however, is his lack of political showmanship, and this, too, has suddenly brought the absurdity of the other politicians into focus. Yesterday, for instance, while I was watching an interview with all the heads of the political parties on [political talk show] Silfur Egils I found myself cringing bigtime when ex-mayor Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir started rattling off her artful commentary immediately after Jón Gnarr's evident confusion: everything she said seemed completely insincere, like a well-rehearsed act that was suddenly tremendously suspect.
In other words, through its alleged "political farce" the Best Party manages to turn things on their heads: Things we previously considered serious now seem ridiculous, phrases or slogans that we previously took at face value are suddenly called into question, and the whole political arena suddenly seems like a joke. All those things we previously attributed to the Best Party [farce, performance, joke, etc.] has somehow become transposed onto its surroundings, and the things it stands for suddenly seem [reasonably] sane.

Should be noted the author, Alda Sigmundsdóttir, was not a Best Party supporter.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Mon May 31st, 2010 at 11:42:49 AM EST
Has anybody got a reaction from Tina Turner yet? Have they invited her to the inauguration?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Mon May 31st, 2010 at 11:47:35 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Now if only it could be shown that John Gnarr was born in the USA...

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon May 31st, 2010 at 05:52:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Reykjavik Grapevine | City Negotiations News

The Best Party and the Social Democrats are still in negotiations about a new majority for city hall, and are still hammering out the fine points of what issues they plan to address, how, and in what order (with the help of Reykjavík residents, via the website betrireykjavik.is.)  

Both parties are reporting that so far negotiations are going well. In fact, Gnarr has been serious enough about working with the Social Democrats to give Social Dem councilman Dagur B. Eggertsson a copy of the HBO television series The Wire. As Gnarr told the Grapevine, he was only considering partnerships with those who have seen the series, which goes into great detail about corruption within Baltimore city hall. Gnarr's emphasis has become so popular that the retail chain Hagkaup is now advertising the DVD set of The Wire with the slogan "The television series that The Best Party recommends."



She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Thu Jun 3rd, 2010 at 11:26:27 AM EST


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