25 April 2016

And the EU Implosion Continues Apace

The Austrian right wing Freedom Party just scored a surprise win in its Presidential elections:
Austria is braced for political turmoil with fears that the landslide victory for a rightwing populist and gun-carrying candidate in Sunday’s first-round presidential vote could trigger snap elections.

Norbert Hofer, of the rightwing Freedom party (FPÖ), defied pollsters’ predictions to beat the Green party’s Alexander Van der Bellen into second place, gaining 36% of the vote. The two candidates will go head to head in a run-off ballot on 22 May.

While the presidential post is mainly a ceremonial role, Hofer has threatened to make use of a right to dissolve parliament before the 2018 elections, warning other candidates in a TV debate that “you will be surprised by what can be done [by a president]”.

Hofer, a youthful 45-year-old who is partially paralysed after a paragliding accident, has campaigned for disability rights and is seen as having lent a friendly face to a party that balances virulently anti-immigration and Eurosceptic messages with leftist stances on welfare issues, led by firebrand Heinz-Christian Strache.

Hofer, who claims to protect himself in the “uncertain times” of the refugee crisis by carrying a Glock gun, scored overwhelming victories in all of Austria’s states apart from Vienna. In Styria, Burgenland and Carinthia – border states most affected by the refugee trail from the Mediterranean to central Europe – Hofer managed to gain 40% or more.
Let's ignore the racism right now.*

The policies of the FPÖ are support for the welfare state, which the German dominated EU is trying to minimize, and it is skeptical of an increasingly anti-democratic structure and culture in Brussels.

It's not surprising that this party is popular. Their positions are popular.

Meanwhile the mainstream parties have stapled themselves to EU policies that are based on delusional economics that are causing pain and misery for the vast majority of the population.

It's no wonder that the 2nd place party was the Greens, with the two mainstream parties getting absolutely demolished:

Austria’s two main parties, which clung to a majority in the last national elections in 2013 after having run the country for most of the past 70 years, have seen approval ratings slump as they flip-flopped on the migration issue. The government’s inconsistency added to simmering domestic discontent about rising unemployment and economic stagnation.

The presidential candidates running for Faymann’s Social Democrats and Vice Chancellor Reinhold Mitterlehner’s People’s Party took 11 percent each, and were eliminated from the run-off. They managed to beat only Richard Lugner, an octogenarian shopping-mall operator and socialite famous for his appearances at Vienna’s Opera Ball together with celebrities such as Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian.
The European experience has not yet failed, but it has been digging itself into a hole for decades.

It has become detached from, and disdainful of, the people that it is supposed to serve, ad its response to increasing hostility from ever larger segments of the populations is to build the walls higher on their fortress mentality.

*Apart fromthat Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?


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