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I voted for the Pirate party here in Berlin, and occasionally it seems their success surprised them more than anyone else.

Right now, both the established political parties and the voters are fascinated by the Pirates. From nowhere to 8 % - that's quite a feat in our slow-moving political landscape. It also means that both the party and those rooting for them are a mix of young people, disappointed voters from both ends of the political spectrum, libertarians and many other factions.

Many Germans are fed up by what is often called a One Party system in disguise, where labeling decisions as "without any alternative" has become Chancellor Merkel's favorite move. There were several large-scale attempts at Internet censorship / filtering (it used to be child pornography yesterday, it's terrorism and copyright violations today, and it'll be something else tomorrow), and more and more people see through the whole theatre.

However, I'm afraid that everyone and their grandmother will project their hopes on a very young and very heterogenous party. There will inevitably be some disappointment.

But then, to quote Groundhog Day: "Something is... different. Anything different is good."

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> From nowhere to 8 % - that's quite a feat in our slow-moving political landscape.

I actually feel that the slow-moving days are over. The recent rise and fall of the FDP was spectacularly fast too, without anything happening, or the FDP even changing their opinion at all. (The FDP is a libertarian/neocon party with some interest in civil liberties.)

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