I'm very happy happy to learn that +Piratenpartei did more than 8% today in the biggest state of Germany.

I'm trying to learn from this success. I'm currently the capitain of +Parti Pirate BW and we have election in october (and it is still not sure that we will have candidates).

Reading the analysis of +Rick Falkvinge is very interesting ( falkvinge.net/2012/05/13/german-pirate-party-scores-fourth-consecutive-election-win/ ) as it points out some key and some major mistake that we are currently doing in Belgium:

1) "We are going to change the world, come next week end".

No. We are not. We are trying to bring a small voice. Every single person coming to a pirate meeting (myself included) wants to write a program, want to discuss all possible answers to questions about the society. Forget that. People don't read programs. And, anyway, if elected, we are not going to be able to stick to the program. Please stop ! Concentrate on "What are we going to do right now to spread the word that we exist". Every single discussion which is not about immediate communication or election organization is not useful. It can be fun, sure. But it is not useful.

New political parties attract lot of people that want to debate, convince or even learn new ideas. Some of those people are very interesting. But, in the end, you want "doers", not thinkers, even interesting ones. Thinkers will only slow you at this point.

Everybody can seat with 10 people in a room, discuss about how his ideas ar better and have a list at the elections. Everybody can do 0,1% of the votes. But here, you are aiming for 5% or 10%. It is not the same game.

2) Looking "electable"

Yes, it is an image game. It is sad but if you want to play the political game, you have to play it with the rules. One is "nobody get elected with his idea only". You have to look electable. You have to be where other parties are, you have to enter the arena, you have to meet people who don't care.

This week-end, in Brussels, there was two big protests: the 15-M protest (indignados) and the gay-pride.

The gay pride has an attendance of 50.000. Every major political party was there, showing support to the gay movement. Except the Pirate Party.

The 15-M has an attendance of 700… (and they throwed toilet paper on banks, which could be interpreted as an act of vandalism). The belgian Pirate Party was amongst them.

What does it means ? It means that our Pirate Party, myself included, is still a protestation movement, still full of people that want to change the world. Do we look electable for the majority of the population ? Certainly not !

Looking electable means wearing ties when you need, showing where people are and not where you want to be (it is exactly that reasonning that convinced me to open a Facebook account).

Like an an open-source project, the Pirate Party is a "do-it-cracy". Which means that the text above is mostly directed to myself and I publish it as a commitment.

As a capitain, I commit to make the Pirate Party a party which is "electable" in the province of Brabant-Wallon. I commit to make the Pirate Party visible enough so that nobody, in october, tell me after the elections "if I knew, I would have voted for you".

And I will probably need your help at some point ;-)
Frederic Minne's profile photo
I was at the 15-M protest saturday and I agree with you.

IMHO, the PPBe has to be in this kind of events... but it's not enough. The people taking part in those protests are already convince by the ideas of the party... as the people reading the news concerning those events are.

In addition, being in those events, while essential, also implies a risk to be associated with the potential degradations (that can be considered as vandalism by some people) that can occur.

I think that finding a good balance between the necessity of participating in the protests and the one of looking electable will be a chalenge for the next few months and I will help as much as I can :)