All eyes this weekend will be on Germany where there are elections tomorrow and where last weekend the Munich Oktoberfest started. At the start of the election campaign it looked like Chancellor Angela “Angie” Merkerl and her CDU/CSU party would get enough votes, as would the pro-business FDP, for them to form a government. A Report in the German media on Wednesday showed that despite what has been called one of the most dull elections it was now looking much closer and that after the German result may see another left/right grand coalition. This would be something of a success for the leader of the SPD, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who had been all but written off.(And has gone from being seen as something of a bureaucrat to having his own version of the Obama Girl.):
One of the things which has been picked up has been the growth of the Pirate Party.(here, here, and here) After the success of the Swedish Pirate Party in the European elections where it polled enough to gain an MEP, people are questioning whether it might happen in Germany too, or are they a small, very well organised, noisy minority able to get people to a flashmob when Angela Merkerl is speaking but not to get out the vote? Certainly, in the first round of a by-election in France their Pirate Party managed just over 2% of the vote. Elsewhere there (and here) has been interest in how well the left party will do. I might just be sad enough to watch the results come through on German TV tomorrow.
At the same time in Munich the annual Oktoberfest has been taking place. Here’s Der Spiegel’s quiz about it and here a photo gallery of it. If you look at the pictures you’ll see women wearing traditional Bavarian dresses (called Dirndl) which is my excuse to show this, “touch my dirndl”: