Iceland

Iceland’s Pirate Party succeeds where New Zealand’s Internet Party failed

The Pirate Party of Iceland, which has the smallest faction in the national parliament after the 2013 election, is now almost as popular as the two ruling coalition parties combined, the latest opinion poll showed.

The party would score 30.1 percent of votes in Iceland if a general election was held now, the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service (RUV)reports citing a Gallup poll. Iceland?s two ruling parties – the Independent Party and the Progressive Party ? have 22.9 percent and 10.1 percent support respectively, scoring less than 3 percent points ahead of the Pirates.

The Pirate Party experienced an astounding surge of popularity in Iceland. In 2013, polls indicated it would barely score 5 percent of votes needed to win parliamentary seats. The party’s approval rating in January was roughly the same. An early March Gallup poll showed its popularity had grown to over 15 percent, beating the Bright Future party. In less than two months the Pirate Party doubled its rating.

It is interesting to see there is a world-wide anti-government government forming. To some degree UKip are like this – they make sense to people because they stand for things that people actually want, and not the rubbish politicians keep foisting on the population. ? Read more »

Photo Of The Day

Photo: Jon Hilmarsson   Angel or Jesus appears in Northern lights. Beautiful formation in the most vivid northern light display I have ever seen over mountain Akrafjall in the west part of Iceland.

Photo: Jon Hilmarsson
Angel or Jesus appears in Northern lights. Beautiful formation in the most vivid northern light display I have ever seen over mountain Akrafjall in the west part of Iceland.

Image of Christ the Redeemer

Appears In The Aurora Borealis Above Iceland

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You can buy milk at 75c per litre in Iceland stores, and UK farmers say it’s killing them

Fascinating tale of how supermarkets use a product as a loss leader, but that apparently causes problems?up the supply chain:

Farmers are threatening protests after Iceland cut the price of a four-pint milk carton from ?1 to 89p.

The budget store is using milk as a loss leader ? selling below cost price to lure in customers ? with the result it is even undercutting discount chains Aldi and Lidl.

However, the news has angered dairy farmers who complain they have been hit with a succession of punishing price cuts which are forcing them out of business.

FFA chairman David Handley said: ?This move by Iceland is a disgrace. It will feed through to lower prices paid to farmers.

?The supermarkets are devaluing milk. We are almost getting to the point it is so cheap that people will buy it because it doesn?t matter if they throw it away.

Rob Harrison, chairman of the National Farmers? Union dairy board, said: ?We will be speaking to Iceland. This continual devaluation of milk is a real concern to our industry.

?It is rather rash and stupid to do this when lots of dairy farmers are suffering with low prices. Read more »

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Photo Of The Day

Photographer: David Martin Castan

Photographer: David Martin Castan

Beauty of Iceland at Night

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Bugger, was looking forward to drinking some of that

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An Icelandic brewery that was planning a beer that contained whale meat has been told that they aren’t allowed to make it?because of some lack of a piece of paperwork.

What a bugger I’d ordered a case of it for the lair…I wonder if I can get my money back.

A controversial beer made with whale meat by-products and oil has been banned after it was discovered that its creators didn?t have a license to sell the whale meal for consumption. ? Read more »

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Re-post – Some perspective on Whaling

I originally posted this in 2010. Given the Labour party thinks they speak for all New Zealand upset over a few Minke whales getting harpooned and the fact that the media accept pirates as a valid source of news, I thought I’d repost these rather inconvenient facts that the anti-whaling crowd wouldn’t want you to know.

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The world?s meddlers gnash their teeth over whaling whether it is for scientific purposes or for commercial. Right now the moratorium on commercial whaling isn?t working and?just over 1500 whales were harvested last year in whaling activities and 31,084 in total since the moratorium began?in 1986. Those figures sound horrendous. I am of course using the WWF figures and we all know how accurate and peer reviewed their information is. An independent assessment done by the?Sea Shepherd Conservation Society?(they must be good, they have the word conservation in their title) says that??Iceland, Norway, and Japan ? have brutally slaughtered over 25,000 whales under the guise of scientific research and for commercial purposes?. Note their overly emotive language. They were harvested, as we know, not brutally slaughtered. To use that terminology I would hate to think how they consider the Beef? industry. Somewhere between those numbers lies the truth. ? Read more »

You think taniwha are bad, wait til the angry elves march

I thought we had it bad in NZ with taniwha appearing demanding great wads of cash to feel better about a road or building or council policy.

But taniwha are nothing compared to angry marching elves blocking progress. Just wait til Maori find out bout this then we will be inundated with claims from?patupaiarehe.

Humans in Iceland are standing up for the rights of elves ? and not because Father Christmas works them too hard.

Elf advocates have joined forces with environmentalists to urge the Icelandic Road and Coastal Commission and local authorities to abandon a highway project because it might disturb the creatures’ habitat.

The activists are particularly concerned about an elf church that sits on the potential site.?? Read more »

The best place in the world to be a woman?

Apparently it is Iceland…so Foreign Policy and the World Economic Forum says:

Women of the world: pack your warmest sweaters, and head immediately to Iceland. According to a newly-released report from the World Economic Forum[pdf], Iceland is the #1 country in the world for gender equality, for the fifth year in a row. And that equality is helping propel Iceland and its fellow Nordic nations to new economic heights. Turns out, the smaller the gender gap, the more economically competitive the nation. Even when that nation is totally freezing.

The notion that gender equality drives development (rather than the other way round) has been so widely celebrated in recent years that it begins to seem trite. But as the newly released 2013 Global Gender Gap Index — which measures gender parity in 136 countries — reminds us, gender equity isn’t simply a matter of equal rights. It’s a matter of efficiency. Many countries have closed the gender gap in education, for example, but gender-based barriers to employment minimize their returns on that investment; Their highly educated women aren’t working. The highest ranking countries in the index have figured out how to maximize returns on their investment in women, and are consequently more economically competitive, have higher incomes, and higher rates of development. ? Read more »

Iceland trying to ban sex industry

Iceland is trying to ban online pornography and the sex industry in general. Good luck with that.

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ULTRA-LIBERAL Iceland wants to ban online pornography. It is just the latest step in its attempts to eliminate the sex industry entirely. In 2009 it introduced fines and jail terms for those who patronise prostitutes (whom it treats as victims). In 2010 it outlawed strip clubs. In February the government decided to take on the glut of smut online and floated the idea of banning violent or degrading pornography, which some Icelanders take to mean most of it. No country has yet wholly succeeded in controlling commercial sex, either through legalisation or criminalisation. But all over the world, particularly in rich democracies, policymakers are watching to see whether Iceland succeeds?and may follow in its footsteps if it does.

Iceland?s proposal is in its early stages and may lose momentum after an election on April 27th, which the government is expected to lose. But its plan puts it in some odd company. Saudi Arabia similarly bans strip clubs, prostitution and pornography. But it also stops women from driving, forbids them from travelling without a man?s permission and restricts their right to vote. In the World Economic Forum?s 2012 Global Gender Gap report, which compares progress in 135 countries towards sex equality, Saudi Arabia ranked 131st.

Iceland, however, is determinedly pro-women. Half the cabinet and 25 of the 63 members of Iceland?s parliament are female. The country is run by the world?s only openly lesbian prime minister. Iceland is also pro-sex. Its supermarkets sell condoms and mini-vibrators next to checkouts. A new sex-education film informs teenagers that sex should be something they want to do again and again, and then maybe again. Some 65% of Icelandic children are born outside marriage, more than any other country in the OECD. Same-sex marriage has been legal since 2010 and gays and lesbians can adopt children. Icelandair ran a campaign featuring the tagline, ?Fancy a dirty weekend in Iceland??

The country?s initiatives against the sex industry have been championed by a powerful feminist movement. “Tackling online porn, particularly the violent kind, is part of a broader set of policies to protect children and reduce sexual violence,” says Halla Gunnarsdottir, a political adviser to the interior minister who has proposed the law. But the more ambitious Iceland has become in its war against the sex industry, the less success it seems to enjoy.

Bizzare. They came for the strip clubs first…

They could really use an Accidental Incest App in Palmerston North

via Slate

via Slate

REYKJAVIK, Iceland?You meet someone, there?s chemistry, and then come the introductory questions: What?s your name? Come here often? Are you my cousin?

In Iceland, a country with a population of 320,000 where most everyone is distantly related, inadvertently kissing cousins is a real risk.

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