• Berlin Parliament's "Pirate Party" Calls Pony Time

    The Pirate Party recently gained a seat on Berlin's parliament, something that has never happened before for the group.  While these guys are serious about their internet rights and battling censorship, they do know how to have a good time, including "Pony Time".  

    After the break is a translated version of this article.  I'm sure you will all get a kick out of it.

    Thanks to Anon for the Englishification!



    Pony break with the Pirates
    Berlin deputies relax with children's TV series
    By Philip Banse
     *  * * * * *
    "My Little Pony," a nearly 30-year-old animated series about the friendship of a handful of ponies, is incorporated into the Rules of Procedure of the Pirate Party in the Berlin state legislature.  When discussion gets heated, any pirate can move to look at an episode of the children’s TV series, in order to calm things down.
     * * * * * * *
    Berlin, 15 November: Berlin State Parliament group meeting. The Pirates can't agree on whom they want to delegate to the committees of the House of Representatives. Then the parliamentary secretary Martin Delius speaks up:

    "Is it possible to place a request for Pony Time?" 

    "Yes." 

    "Then I make a procedural motion for Pony Time." 


    Session leader and parliamentary leader Andreas Baum is not impressed: 



    "Pony Time? I am against it." 

    "You're against it? Ok, then we must vote on it. Who supports the motion I have just made for Pony Time?"
    "We’re adjourning at 18:30, understand?  Four against ... and five in favor?  Right, okay then; we’re having Pony Time." 

    “Which episode?”
    “Twenty.”
    “We don’t have that.” 
    “One.  Can somebody find it?”

    A projector projects the YouTube video on the wall. Fifteen members of the Berlin State Parliament interrupt their group meeting to watch a children's television program -- 20 minutes long. 


     * * * * * * * *
    Excerpt from "My Little Pony": 



    "I asked what friendship can be good for, but you offered me friendship.  Adventure, fun and games, and something for the heart and a lot of everything." 


      * * * * * * * *
    "My Little Pony" is an almost 30-year-old cartoon series about the friendship of a handful of ponies that dance, bounce, and magic their way through the brashly colorful fantasy world of Equestria. 



     * * * * * * * *
    Excerpt from "My Little Pony": 



    "Just because maybe someone knows a few magic tricks. that doesn’t make her better than all the other ponies." 

    "Especially because I'm the one that is better than all the other ponies." 


      * * * * * * * *
    "As Chairman, I recommend Pony Time for every party in Parliament.  It helps, it relaxes the whole atmosphere, it leads people back to see reason. You come down, think of something else, look at some children's television.  It's a good idea." 



    So says the Chairman of the Federal Congress of the Pirates, Philip Brechler, better known as “Cookies.” Their parliamentary leader Andreas Baum adds: 



    “It concerns itself with things that we emphasize as Pirates: trust, friendship, etc.  To spell it out: Okay, this person sitting right beside me and with whom I had such a stark difference or disagreement, is really fundamentally on my side, so let’s watch the show, so we can find our points of concurrence and agree on something." 


      * * * * * * * *
    Excerpt from "My Little Pony": 



    "I'm so sorry! Please, please don’t hate me!" 

    "Hate you? Why should we hate you, honey?  Your magic is a part of you, my sugar mousie. We like you just as you are. We’re proud that such a gifted unicorn is our friend." 


     * * * * * * * * 
    The age-old series "My Little Pony" is a piece of internet culture. And like so much of Internet culture, it all began on 4chan, an anarchic website where anyone can post pictures, anonymously and uncontrolled.  Eventually the pastel-colored ponies appeared on it, got commented on, and were assembled and mutated into icons of Net culture: 



    "Because they became friends and could reason together, they can solve their problems.  That’s what the Net brings about as well.  Very different characters think together and find resolutions.  This is really the same thing -- but depicted using ponies," 
says party worker and pony expert Stephan Urbach, who introduced his ponies into the Rules of Procedure of the Berlin Pirate Party:
"At a party congress, Lotte and I thought: Hmm, kind of an aggressive mood here, maybe we should watch a bit of 'My Little Pony.'" 



    It was in June, when the Berlin Meeting of the Pirates was in full swing. The pirates "Alx42," Mr. Urbach, Lotte, and “Cookies” decided to tap into the good karma of colorful ponies for their party -- and "hacked the Rules of Procedure," as she put it.  Alexander Morlang, now a Berlin MP, moved that the Rules should allow any Pirate to submit a request for Pony Time during a party meeting.  If a majority approved the motion, then: 



    "An episode, perceived as appropriate by the meeting’s leaders, of the series 'My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic' will be played." 



    This pony provision, however, was only presented in writing, and never read out loud.  So really, hardly anyone knew what they were voting on, recalled State Parliament Member Heiko Herberg on his podcast: 



    "It was really hilarious.  Half of the people weren’t there yet, not yet ready, and suddenly such a motion was made and - bang - the thing was done." 


      * * * * * * * *
    Excerpt from "My Little Pony": 



    "I think that's the best trick so far." 

      * * * * * * * *
    To date, Pony Time has been called only twice among the Berlin Pirates.  The sweet quadrupeds have proved their worth, says party leader Andrew Baum.  However, one should use Pony Time with caution and should not overdose, as in the Pony Time premiere at that group meeting of 15 November: 



    "I have to say that we weren’t consistent.  Everybody agreed to throw over the Rules of Procedure and just start a little earlier.”