So here I am, blabbering on about silly old Eurovision and machismo and all manner of ridiculous things, while Grave Issues are staring me in the face. I speak, of course, of our national elections coming up this weekend, which you might be forgiven for presuming that I don’t give a rat’s ass about, but which in fact I do contemplate and discuss with my darling husband to some considerable extent on a daily basis. When I’m not contemplating or discussing Eiríkur Hauksson’s sex appeal with him, that is.
This evening our doorbell rang most cheerfully – dingdong! – and on our doorstep were members of Samfylkingin – The Social Democratic Alliance – delivering roses. That’s right, delivering roses and – by their own account – knocking on people’s doors in order to smile at the general populace. Cleverly I left it to EPI to take delivery of our complimentary red rose and to smile back because, quite frankly, I find the whole campaign circus a tad embarrassing. Whereas EPI, having been brought up in a political household [his father was an MP], knows exactly how to deal with those kinds of people.
And so here I sit, staring at a most fetching red rose, but I’m probably not going to vote for the people who brought it. Neither am I going to vote for the ruling Independence Party [conservative moneymoneymoney bleh!] nor the coalition Progressive Party [‘progress’ to them being equivalent to ‘more aluminium smelters’] nor the Left-Green Party [Paul Nikolov [aka Paul Fontaine] on their ticket, saynomore], nor the Liberal Party [um … losers]. Which only leaves one: Íslandshreyfingin – Grænt Framboð.
Everyone says not to vote for them because it will be a wasted vote, but personally, to me, they seem to be the only people talking any sense. The ruling parties bang on about heavy industry being a prerequisite for progress in this country and give those who dare to present a different kind a vision a benevolent pat on the head before dismissing their views as childish and naïve. Meanwhile, it has been proven that one tourist is worth ISK 93 thousand to the national economy, whereas a ton of aluminium delivers only ISK 28 thousand. Aluminium smelters owned by huge multinationals also gather the wealth onto a few hands that hold enormous power over small communities. They upset the economic balance and wreak terrible havoc on natural surroundings. They deliver only something like 2 or 3 percent GDP per year, while Björk, Sigur Rós and their ilk bring in some 5 or 7 percent. Right now, aluminium smelters are being moved out of the US and large natural areas being protected; the same is happening in Norway. And to where are they looking at relocating those smelters? – Three guesses, the first two don’t count.
Our nature is, along with our people, the greatest natural resource this country has. For me, personally, this election is about that issue – first and foremost. I don’t buy into the fear propaganda of the current administration – that if we abandon their heavy-industry course our entire health, welfare and education system will collapse and we will all be eating cat food for dinner. I think we’re entering a new century and a new type of society – a knowledge-based society. I want to try the Finnish and Danish models, who instead of supporting heavy industry poured money into their creative and design sectors with excellent results. I think there is so much opportunity if we’re only willing to think outside the box – we could keep our amazing nature and have prosperity.
So – I’m willing to risk the wasted vote. If nothing else, I’ll view it as a piece of my mind.
Still gloomy, and no rain so far. Better luck tomorrow [er, today] we hope [er, not]. Temps 7°C [41F] at present, sunrise was at 4:34 am and sunset at 10:16 pm.