Worldlog Week 38 – 2012
This is the first Worldlog following the summer recess. It was a summer recess not marked by relaxation but rather by frenetic campaign activity as we got closer to the Dutch Lower House elections which were held last week on 12 September.
The Party for the Animals will be returning to the Dutch parliament with two seats – an unchanged number and an excellent result! The number of votes cast for our party grew by no less than 45 percent relative to the elections in 2010 (from 1.3 to 1.9 percent), which makes us the sharpest climber in these elections and we very nearly gained a third seat.
It was an exciting campaign dominated by the battle between the Labour Party (social democrats) and the People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy (conservatives). A great many people voted strategically for one of these two parties. But, fortunately, many voters also held on to their principles!
It has now become absolutely clear that the Party for the Animals is no flash in the pan as many critics predicted when we entered parliament for the first time in 2006. We have been able to win the hearts of voters and to appeal to a growing number of people who reject short-term human interests in favour of compassion and sustainability.
We’ve included below a few photos of the highlights of the campaign.
The period ahead will dominated by negotiations to form a new government. If the parties are willing to make good on their election promises, an ample coalition can be created based on compassion and sustainability.
In the years ahead Esther Ouwehand and I will continue striving to ensure the interests of animals, nature and our living environment feature high on the political agenda and to promote greater sustainability in government policy. And we are confident that we will succeed given that there is no longer an animal-unfriendly majority in parliament (animal-unfriendly parties lost a considerable number of seats in these elections). Our fight against the bio-industry can now bank on greater impetus and support.
Immediately following the elections, we submitted parliamentary questions on the gassing of 30,000 meat broiler chicks. The gassed chicks had survived a fire at a chicken house, but because they no longer had an “economic value” it was decided to gass them anyway. Unbelievable!
A new species of monkey has been discovered by scientists in Congo. Wonderful news you might think, except when you consider that the first sighting of the monkey was not in the wild but captive in a cage.
Finally, I would like to share some wonderful news from Australia with you. The Australian parliament has banned a gigantic fishing trawler from the Netherlands – a so-called supertrawler – from fishing in Australian waters. On Thursday the parliamentarians voted for a proposal that requires two years of environmental studies to be carried out first.
Until next week!
Demonstration against concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs); placing a sign with the text ‘Sick of CAFOs’.
Esther Ouwehand places a bee-hotel in the prime minister’s office to draw attention to the worldwide bee die-off.
Posing for a photo with volunteers at the election dinner in Amsterdam.
Demonstration against the Netherlands’ largest CAFO, which will produce 70,000 meat pigs and seven million meat broiler chickens each year.
Interview with Frits Wester, political analyst from RTL7 television.
Mega 40-metre banner next to a busy highway.
Demonstration calling for the protection of the North Sea: Symbolically proclaiming the sea reserve.
Young party members make the world’s first election slogan in moss with the message “Stop the felling”.
Speech on election night.