Sweden’s Pirate Party picked up a couple of seats in the European Parliament at the next election and seems to have come up with a clever gambit for trying to secure one or two for the national parliament:
Sweden’s political Piratpartiet (Pirate Party) and the operators of The Pirate Bay have always stressed their independence from each other, but they are now lashed tightly together—and could soon be much tighter. If Piratpartiet has its way, The Pirate Bay won’t be using secret servers anymore. The servers will be quite public and located… inside the Swedish Parliament. [...]
Piratpartiet knows this. In a new editorial published in Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet (English translation), the party says that it hopes to host the Bay from servers located within the Swedish Parliament to take advantage of parliamentary immunity. The plan relies on 1) The Pirate Bay agreeing to it and 2) Piratpartiet’s performance in the upcoming September elections.
Piratepartiet is best known for its work on basic copyright stuff regarding copying digital movie and music files, but the actually important part of their policy agenda concerns efforts to find a viable alternative to government-granted monopolies (i.e., patents) as a means of financing pharmaceutical research.
In most of the developed world, politics revolves around a central left-right axis of conflict that’s basically about how high taxes should be. In many European countries, however, the main parties are no longer very far apart on these issues. Consequently, the political scene is more open to parties focusing on different kinds of topics. That’s most prominently manifested itself via a series of anti-immigrant parties, but parties pushing for IP reform also fit the bill.