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Haven’t you watched The Story of Stuff yet?
Jan 16th, 2010

What is The Story of Stuff? From its extraction through sale, use and disposal, all the stuff in our lives affects communities at home and abroad, yet most of this is hidden from view. The Story of Stuff is a 20-minute, fast-paced, fact-filled look at the underside of our production and consumption patterns. The Story of Stuff exposes the connections between a huge number of environmental and social issues, and calls us together to create a more sustainable and just world. It’ll teach you something, it’ll make you laugh, and it just may change the way you look at all the stuff in your life forever. (text from http://www.storyofstuff.com/)

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2009 PES Congress – Video Summary
Jan 14th, 2010

PES Congress 2009 Highlights from PES_Party of European Socialists on Vimeo.

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Want to know what my voice sounds like?
Jan 13th, 2010

Then listen to this week’s podcast in Chasing Brussels!

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So long 2009! Welcome 2010!
Jan 10th, 2010

A couple of days ago, I took part in the recording of the podcast Chasing Brussels. We were asked what we thought the highlights of 2009 were and what those of 2010 may be.

2009 has been a year of great renewal for me. For the first time, I got very involved in a European elections campaign, which was a fascinating experience. We have seen the premises of true European political campaigning at the Party of European Socialists. However the campaign in-country remained nationally focused, which was a great disappointment for European activists. In the end, the European Parliament is even more right-wing than before, and Barroso will be at the head of the European Commission for 5 more years. This status quo is quite depressing. On a more positive note, 2009 was also the year where I started to blog, tweet, and more generally use all kinds of social media tools avidly. I got involved in exciting projects such as bloggingportal.eu -the EU blog aggregator- and the Gender Balanced Commission Campaign. I’ve had the chance to meet many Eurobloggers in person or virtually on skype, chats, and Google Wave.

I don’t know if 2010 will be interesting in terms of European politics. There is no highest point in political life than the elections. After that, it’s more or less business as usual. Don’t get me wrong, lots of interesting stuff is happening in European policy-making all the time but I’m afraid it’s mostly ignored by mainstream media. Let’s see if in the 4 years to come our growing community of Eurobloggers can change this dynamic!

For now, if you have a little time, I invite you to follow the hearings of the European Commissioners-designate by the members of the European Parliament. They will take place from the 11th to the 19th of January. You can find the agenda here and view the hearings in live streaming here. I’ll be live-tweeting about it here.

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Quote of the Week: Margot Wallström
Dec 15th, 2009

“Advice for anyone thinking about blogging on EU affairs – develop a thick skin, especially if you are writing positive things about the EU”

Margot Wallström, Blogging, last blogpost as EU commissioner for communication.

Nice testimony by Margot Wallström of what it’s been like to blog in her position over the past 5 years.

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PES Congress 2009: all my Tweets in one place!
Dec 9th, 2009

The 8th PES congress has just started! Follow it on Twitter with #pescongress or live on www.pes.org. Hello from Prague! 9:42 AM Dec 7th from web

The #pescongress is carbon-neutral. http://www.pes.org/en/news/pes-hold-carbon-neutral-congress-prague 9:47 AM Dec 7th from web

Paroubek, former Czech PM is now opening the #pescongress 9:55 AM Dec 7th from web

Now our beloved PNR – Poul Nyrup Rasmussen – , PES president has entered the stage #pescongress 10:00 AM Dec 7th from web

PES pres: I want to make a pact today with you to find and define a new direction for our progressive societies #pescongress 10:19 AM Dec 7th from web

PES pres: a progressive society has to put gender equality at the centre of its priorities #pescongress 10:20 AM Dec 7th from webPrague_3

PES pres: Regarding the financial crisis, back to business as usual is not an option #pescongress 10:23 AM Dec 7th from web

PES president is explaining how the negotiations went regarding the selection of Catherine Ashton as EU High Rep #pescongress 10:26 AM Dec 7th from web

PES pres: It is a myth to believe that the market economy, especially fin markets, will have a tendency to equilibrium #pescongress 10:28 AM Dec 7th from web

PES pres: Never ever again financial speculation must turn our societies down. Never again. #pescongress 10:28 AM Dec 7th from web

PES pres Poul Rasmussen: some of the key pillars of our project are green growth, education and gender equality #pescongress 10:36 AM Dec 7th from web

PES president Poul Nyrup Rasmussen gets a standing ovation when he says that we must have a common candidate for next Commission president 10:42 AM Dec 7th from web

Zapatero’s motto: “I’m a Feminist because I’m a Socialist”. A progressive society is not possible without gender equality #pescongress 11:23 AM Dec 7th from web

enjoyed the 1st panel at the #pescongress very much, great ideas for the future by Aubry, Bersani, Gilmore, Gabriel and Thorning-Schmidt 12:12 PM Dec 7th from web

Socialist group president Martin Schultz addresses the #pescongress in German, French and English. Well done! 12:17 PM Dec 7th from web

Poul Nyrup Rasmussen is reelected as the president of the Party of European Socialists! very happy about the news :) #pescongress 12:41 PM Dec 7th from web

Poul N. Rasmussen receives a red roses bouquet from PES Women pres Zita Gurmai. Lovely that men also get flowers at the PES @pescongress 12:44 PM Dec 7th from web

I think PES president Poul Nyrup Rasmussen is one of the most inspiring politicians there are. v. happy he remains our leader #pescongress 12:49 PM Dec 7th from web

at 2nd panel on progressive societies @ #pescongress 3 women in their 30ies as speakers out of 5 in total. very dynamic and inspiring 4:04 PM Dec 7th from web

“If you tell a fairy tale to a child and you don’t believe in it yourself, then the child will not either” Petroula Nteledimou #pescongress 4:17 PM Dec 7th from web

2nd day @ #pescongress just starting. had a great time yesterday, looking forward to today’s programme http://tinyurl.com/yfcxfl2 10:11 AM Dec 8th from web

Poul Nyrup Rasmussen: “In some sense, we are all workaholics in the social-democratic movement” #pescongress 10:14 AM Dec 8th from web

Economist Jeffrey Sachs: “Social-democracy has proven to be the most successful economic model in the world” #pescongress http://tr.im/GZHt 10:16 AM Dec 8th from web

Read blogpost summaries of yesterday’s panels at the #pescongress here: http://www.pes.org/en/blogs/pes-blog 10:19 AM Dec 8th from web

and check out the pictures of the event there: http://www.pes.org/en/galleries/pes-congress-2009 #pescongress 10:20 AM Dec 8th from web

Howard Dean addressing the #pescongress : “Free market alone cannot achieve social justice. We need a global new deal” 10:32 AM Dec 8th from web

Nabil Shaat from Fatah gets warm applauses at the #pescongress 10:38 AM Dec 8th from web

P.N. Rasmussen: I would have been so happy if I, at this moment, could give the floor to our Israeli party. #pescongress 10:55 AM Dec 8th from web

video address of Australian PM Kevin Rudd #pescongress www.pes.org 10:55 AM Dec 8th from web

Now starting: panel on the campaign Europeans for Financial Reform. REGULATE GLOBAL FINANCE NOW! #pescongress http://tr.im/H00R 11:33 AM Dec 8th from web

Elio Di Rupo (PS, BE): Everything remains to be done to regulate financial markets. The mountain gave birth to a mouse.#pescongress 11:37 AM Dec 8th from web

Di Rupo: We must fight neo-liberalism with renewed energy. #pescongress 11:41 AM Dec 8th from web

Di Rupo: No to this stressing society, this society of profit maximisation. 1/2 #pescongress11:44 AM Dec 8th from web

Di Rupo: This is stressing people out of their mind. We want a more human society. 2/2 #pescongress 11:44 AM Dec 8th from web

“Fiscal stability cannot be done at the expense of social justice” Ivari Padar, leader of the Estonian Social Democrats #pescongress 11:51 AM Dec 8th from web

French MEP Pervenche Berès, amazing expert on ecofin, now talking! #pescongress 11:52 AM Dec 8th from web

Berès: We are not living up to the challenge. Things seem to start again as usual as if nothing had happened. #pescongress 11:53 AM Dec 8th from web

Berès: Why is it that any type of product has to go through controls to enter our markets, all products but financial products? #pescongress 11:56 AM Dec 8th from web

Andreas Schieder (Austria): The crisis shows the failure of the ideology of privatising gains and collectivising losses #pescongress 11:59 AM Dec 8th from web

The PES has elected its new presidency! Find full list of members here: http://tr.im/H07R #pescongress 12:05 PM Dec 8th from web

Berès: The challenge of this campaign (for financial regulation) is to make it a grass-root campaign 1/2 #pescongress 12:30 PM Dec 8th from web

Berès: These questions only seem complex because some don’t want us to get involved ! 2/2 #pescongress 12:31 PM Dec 8th from web

Find all Congress documents and resolutions here: http://tr.im/H0eE #pescongress 12:35 PM Dec 8th from web

Javier Moreno of the Global Progressive Forum is presenting the Europeans For Financial Reform campaign http://tr.im/H0f2 #pescongress 12:37 PM Dec 8th from web

Sign the call to action “Regulate Global Finance Now!” http://tr.im/H0fp #pescongress 12:38 PM Dec 8th from web

Closing session at the #pescongress is starting now, follow it live here: www.pes.org 2:22 PM Dec 8th from web

Former Bulgarian PM Sergei Stanishev: Where do we want to be as a political family by next PES congress? #pescongress 2:27 PM Dec 8th from web

Philip Cordery has been unanimously reelected as PES secretary general. Bravo Philip! #pescongress 2:32 PM Dec 8th from web

Ruairi Quinn is reelected PES treasurer #pescongress 2:35 PM Dec 8th from web

Adrian Severin (VP socialist group in EP): We need a PES that is a true architecture of the European transnational democracy #pescongress 2:37 PM Dec 8th from web

Severin: I truly believe the future of social-democracy lies on Europe #pescongress 2:40 PM Dec 8th from web

Marije Laffeber (Dutch Int. Sec.) This has been two very inspiring days. #pescongress 2:41 PM Dec 8th from web

Commissioner Vladimir Spidla: We shouldn’t move towards the centre but we should become the centre. #pescongress 2:45 PM Dec 8th from web

Anna Paola Concia (Rainbow Rose), only open Lesbian in Italian Parliament addresses the #pescongress 2:49 PM Dec 8th from web

A.P. Concia: Social and civil rights should always come together. Voters recognise those who fight for their values #pescongress 2:50 PM Dec 8th from web

Janna Besamusca (SG ECOSY): Youth unemployment at the moment in Europe is twice as high as the average #pescongress 2:51 PM Dec 8th from web

Zita Gurmai (Pres. PES Women): More important than ever is to listen to our members, our activists & the younger generation. #pescongress 2:57 PM Dec 8th from web

Jiri Paroubek: “Czech became the international language of the last two days” Thanks Jiri for hosting this fabulous #pescongress :) 3:01 PM Dec 8th from web

Paroubek: We have a lot of expectations for the Spanish presidency of the European Union (1st semester 2010) #pescongress 3:06 PM Dec 8th from web

Now Poul Nyrup Rasmussen (PNR) gives the closing speech of the #pescongress 3:08 PM Dec 8th from web

PNR thanks all the PES secretariat team, one by one :) #pescongress 3:11 PM Dec 8th from web

PNR: There are 25.000 PES activists now. I have a dream that at next #pescongress we become 50.000 3:14 PM Dec 8th from web

PNR: Next century is going to be ours.The 21st century will be the progressive century. #pescongress 3:14 PM Dec 8th from web

PNR: Over the next years we will change Europe and its priorites #pescongress 3:20 PM Dec 8th from web

We will not allow that the market guides us because it has no face. Social democracy is about giving the market a human face. #pescongress 3:21 PM Dec 8th from web

We don’t want to avoid the market but we want to ensure that the market becomes the servant of the people, not its master. #pescongress 3:21 PM Dec 8th from web

We will be the party of engagement, freedom, hope and humanity #pescongress 3:23 PM Dec 8th from web

very moved by Poul Nyrup Rasmussen’s last words. A thought to my Spanish republican gd-parents. Thx Poul for being so inspiring #pescongress 3:26 PM Dec 8th from web

#pescongress finished now :( thanks for following the tweets. looking forward to next year’s congress! 3:37 PM Dec 8th from web

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Muppets sing for the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty
Dec 1st, 2009

Lovely: the European anthem sung by the Muppets

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Spoof European commercials for condoms
Dec 1st, 2009

On the occasion of World AIDS day, here is a little French humour: the legendary spoof European commercials for condoms by Les Inconnus. No subtitles, but they are not really necessary anyway.

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It took us one week to get a gender-balanced Commission
Nov 26th, 2009

When we launched the on-line campaign for a gender balanced Commission, there were only 4 female nominees to the European Commission. In just a week time, we got 5 more. Did we have an impact? I hope so. One thing is for sure, there was great enthusiasm with this campaign. None of us got paid to work on it. We all did it during our free time, simply trying to make the most out of our skills and networks. And it worked.

GBC1Within only one week, we got about 800 people to sign our petition for a European Commission with at least one third of women, and 2.000 fans on our Facebook page. We managed to get press articles in European VoiceEl Mundothe Guardian and New Europe. Many bloggers and twitterers, along with the European Women’s Lobby and New Europe, agreed to be public supporters of our campaign. Although PES Women President Zita Gurmai mentioned our campaign on her blog, no politician formally agreed to publicly appear as a supporter of our campaign. I wonder why. Is it that they didn’t feel comfortable with supporting a campaign promoting candidates from various political parties? Or is it that they were simply waiting for our campaign to be big enough so that they couldn’t possibly ignore it anymore?

Anyway, I was very happy to be involved in this campaign, which conveyed the tremendous power of social media, and I look forward to next one! Any idea what it should be on?

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I attended PdF09 and I will attend PdF10
Nov 26th, 2009

This weekend, I had a fantastic time at the Personal Democracy Forum in Barcelona, the conference where technology passionates and politics addicts meet. I have to admit I didn’t learn much during the workshops but on the other hand, that might be because I already know much, which is a good sign. Some presentations inspired me though. But that’s not what matters the most anyway.

At PdF EU -just as any conference- the most important is the people you meet. And I met lots of fascinating people, some of which I will collaborate with on common projects: the staff of the Norwegian Labour party, the PES activist friends from Clermont-Ferrand, the organiser of the Brussels girl geek dinners, the people behind Europatweets, the staff from La Netscouade and other Internet agencies, and many more inspiring people.

So, well done PdF! I am glad I was part of it. Now I’m back to Brussels with my mind full of new project ideas, which is probably the best deliverable you could expect from that conference. I am looking forward to helping develop the PdF network in Europe and attending PdF10, which -I think- should take place in Barcelona again (However considering my Spanish origins, I’m probably being biased on that one).

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© Eurosocialiste 2010. Everything posted on this blog is my personal opinion and does not necessarily represent the views of my employer or its clients. The content of this blog has been revised by Fabtrad (fabtrad @ gmail.com)