quinta-feira, outubro 15, 2009



Europe, Lars von Trier

On October of 1945, the American German descendant Leopold Kessler arrives in a post-war Frankfurt and his bitter Uncle Kessler gets a job for him in the Zentropa train line as a sleeping car conductor. While travelling in the train learning his profession, he sees the destructed occupied Germany and meets Katharina Hartmann, the daughter of the former powerful entrepreneur of transport business and owner of Zentropa, Max Hartmann. Leopold stays neutral between the allied forces and the Germans, and becomes aware that there is a terrorist group called "Werewolves" killing the sympathizers of the allied and conducting subversive actions against the allied forces. He falls in love for Katharina, and sooner she discloses that she was a "Werewolf". When the entrepreneur Max Hartmann commits suicide, Leopold is also pressed by the "Werewolves" and needs to take a position and a decision. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. This is fiction; it s a film by Lars von Trier but it could be real:


Europe, PES - Socialist European Party

The day before the beginning of the PES annual Council meeting, FEPS organised a training and information day for PES activists in Madrid in order to provide them with more precise and detailed information on the functioning of the European Union and on the upcoming European elections in 2009. The Forum aimed to bring together political leaders from the PES, intellectuals and PES activists who are interested in exchanging their views and opinions and to find new ways of promoting the socialist and social democratic values and policies all over Europe.

The event was opened by Ernst Stetter, the Secretary General of FEPS. He stressed the need of socialist and progressive ideas to tackle today’s issues and encouraged social democrats to give a new direction for Europe in engaging strongly for the upcoming elections. He invited PES activists to “develop ideas and concepts to meet the challenges that our societies face and assist our parties win the people’s trust to earn the chance to make the social democratic vision again a reality”.

The opening was followed by a general debate on “How to promote the Manifesto?” Zita Gurmai, President of PES Women, Member of the Board of FEPS, was concerned with the challenge “How to get real access to Europe for everyone?” She welcomed the creation of the system of PES activists and its growing success. She pointed out that the socialist party is the only one in the world which is taking care of ordinary people and the national parties have to make people in their country feel and believe that. She also welcomed the section of Gender equality in the Manifesto and urged to make it a reality.

Poul Nyrup Rasmussen, the President of PES gave an inspiring speech about social Europe and the Manifesto. He started with a statement “Finishing with the black boxes, coming with transparency!” He welcomed the activists and named them as brick builders across the frontiers, doing the essential and most difficult job. He stressed that we must find answers to the cross-border democracy, especially in these times of crisis when countries are more than ever linked to isolation and nationalism. He noted that the power of the Manifesto is in the technique it has been done: with the input of everyone, elaborating the ideas all together.

Portuguese PES activists participated in this event, learned a lot and exchanged experiences with comrades from other Europeans countries.

EUROPE – PORTUGAL - September / October 2009

First PES exchange campaign in Portugal

Two important elections took place in Portugal in autumn , general elections – Parlamentary Deputies – and local elections – mayors and district members for local assemblies. This was possible due to the strong will of my friend and comrade José Reis Santos, a Portuguese socialist, historian, working at Brussels for one year at the PES.

It was a risky initiative, with week support from the Portuguese Socialist Party that began slowly and carefully – during the first campaign, the one for general elections – and came to her happy end – during the local elections – with glamour and success. We invited PES activist from Hungary, Romania, Poland, Belgium, Spain, Germany and Bosnia and all of us shared wonderful days campaigning and knowing each others both as individuals and as citizens of a Europe we want to build. Both elections achieved their issues: the Portuguese Socialist Party had the majority of votes and many districts went on being politically socialists, namely Lisbon, where António Costa won with a total majority. The presence of PES activists showed – to Portuguese citizens – that Europe shall be a construction of all European citizens and clearly stressed the importance of a socio-anthropological approach to all campaigns in order to deal with each cultural specificity, in each country, in all European Nations.

Being a conflictual and wounded “never land” at the aftermath of World War II, a kind of tunnel with no issues, Europe found a way to became a world of solidarity and the European Socialist party is an important and collective instrument for the construction of this new world. This exchange campaign of PES in Portugal was the beginning of a wonderful friendship between socialists from several countries.

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