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30 April 2012 Edition

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Pirates set to storm the Bundestag

GERMAN Chancellor Angela Merkel is looking over her shoulder ahead of elections next year as her coalition partners are falling victim to a party of Pirates.

A new poll for broadcaster RTL shows that Pirate Party Germany is now the country’s third-largest political force with support around 13%. The party (which has a large youth following) calls for the reformation of copyright laws as well as data privacy and freedom of information. It dealt a crushing blow to both the Greens and Merkel’s Free Democrat (FDP) allies in recent elections in Saarland, taking four seats in the regional parliament. This election followed hot on the heels of a shock result in Berlin last year which saw the Pirate Party take 15 seats. The result was dismissed then as a ‘one-off’ by rivals.

Now the Pirates have their sights set on the Bundestag and they could hold the balance of power in any future parliament.

Labour leader wants Fianna Fáil merger

THE Labour Mayor of Killarney wants to merge with Fianna Fáil to stop Sinn Féin and “the extreme Left”.

Seán Counihan said that Ireland needs a “proper, strong Left” (Fianna Fáil are left?!!!!!) and he believes there are “no insurmountable policy differences” between Fianna Fáil and Labour.

The opportunist Labour leader in Killarney let it slip when  he thought out loud: “Fianna Fáil are low in the opinion polls and Labour are dropping a few points as well so the timing might be good.”

Spanish king packs his trunk

SPAIN is one of the countries hardest hit by the financial crisis (unemployment one in four) but that didn’t stop King Juan Carlos setting a right royal example by swanning off on an expensive safari in Africa, leaving his subjects at home tightening their belts.

The Iberian monarch paid thousands of euros to go on a hunting trip in Uganda, where he bought a $15,000 licence to shoot and kill an elephant. He is also reported to have shot and killed two buffaloes before ‘his highness’ was hospitalised following a fall (it’s not been revealed off what or how).

There is now a public outcry in Spain demanding to know how much the trip cost the taxpayer. Animal rights activists have also organised protests after pictures emerged showing their king proudly posing like a big game hunter in front of the corpse of a dead elephant propped up against a tree.

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