Iceland’s banking collapse was the largest suffered by any country in economic history. The debts were 12 times bigger than the gross national product, the households are overindebted, thousands of people had to leave their homes and apartments. And the Icelanders are disgusted with the fact that none of the "oligarchs" who dominated the financial sector were hold responsible for their deeds.
In January, the actor, comedian and former punk rocker Jon Gnarr said, he'd had enough and founded, together with some friends, the "Best Party". They refused donations for the election and concentrated on singing, gaming and joking, and made one of the most creative election campaings in the history of democracy.
And the best thing is: Gnarr was elected mayor, Reykyavik is governed by the Best Party. His comment on the issue of foreigners: all of the Icelanders had immigrated there one time or the other and now there's an end to that daft topic.
Surprisingly (or maybe not so surprisingly) Gnarr and his friends turned out quite competent politicians with an approval rating of 75 %.
Some of this promises: to bring a polar bear in the zoo, and to offer free towels at public swimming pools. Funny? These are not so funny issues in Iceland. In 2008, the first polar bear to swim to Iceland in 15 years was shot by police.
The free towel message makes sense, too. If Reykjavik's public pools with their seawater and sulfur baths offer free towels, then they can reach accredited spa status under European Union rules. Spas equal more tourists. And more tourists - that's something the Icelandic economy needs badly at the moment.
Read more in the New York Times.
Here are some statements from the party platform. I especially like: Listen more to women and old people: This bunch gets listened to far too little. It's as if everyone thinks they are just complaining or something. We're going to change that.