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  The Great Nordic Thread
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Question: Will Iceland and Norway ever join the EU?
#1Iceland, but not Norway  
#2Norway, but not Iceland  
#3Both  
#4None of them  
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Author Topic: The Great Nordic Thread  (Read 152151 times)
Diouf
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« Reply #125 on: August 09, 2013, 04:02:54 am »
« edited: August 09, 2013, 04:33:33 am by Diouf »

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The cabinet reshuffle has been rather moderate. Only one new person enters the government and two persons leave it in addition to a number of shifts of ministries for current ministers. Foreign Minister Villy Søvndal was spared and continues in the government. The Social Liberals' ministers were not involved in the reshuffle while S and SF each had a goal to fulfill with the reshuffle. SF wanted a new post for their leader Annette Vilhelmsen who couldn't profile herself very well in a very technical Ministry of Business and Growth while S wanted to introduce Henrik Sass Larsen into the government. Sass Larsen has long been a high-ranking Social Democrat and was widely expected to become Minister for Finance after the 2011 election. However, under dramatic circumstances he chose to withdraw as a potential minister when he was told that the intelligence service could not give him a security clearance. The main problem was his friendship with a corrupt local Social Democrat who often moved on the edge of the law. Through this relationsship he had been in contact a couple of times with a high ranking member of the criminal motorcycle gang Bandidos. Since then the whole case about the clearance has been rolled up and most people agree that the relationsship was not as reprehensible as it seemed at first.

List of changes. New/remaining ministers from left to right on picture:

Minister for Transport Henrik Dam Kristensen (S) is no longer a part of the government.
Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Mette Gjerskov (S) is no longer a part of the government.

Former Minister of Defence Nick Hækkerup (S) becomes Minister of Trade and European Affairs
Former Minister of Integration and Social Affairs Karen Hækkerup (S) becomes Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries.
Henrik Sass Larsen (S) becomes Minister for Business and Growth
Former Minister for Business and Growth Annette Vilhemsen (SF) becomes Minister of Integration, Children and Social Affairs.
Former Minister for Trade and Investment Pia Olsen Dyhr (SF) becomes Minister for Transport.
Former Minister of European Affairs Nicolai Wammen (S) becomes Minister of Defence.
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Diouf
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« Reply #126 on: September 17, 2013, 03:13:45 am »

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The MP and former Minister Uffe Elbæk has decided to leave the Radikale Venstre/Social Liberal Party to become an independent. He says that he can no longer defend the government's policies and mentions several examples of polices that he has opposed: The new publicity law which in some areas restricts the media's access to information, the Finance Minister Bjarne Corydon's statements that the modern welfare state is and should be a competition state i.e. New Public Management is the way forward, that the Kurdish TV station Roj TV has had its license withdrawn. The straw that broke the camel's back, according to Elbæk, was that the government a few days ago decided to ditch the earmarking of parental leave to dads and instead introduce a small financial bonus for the dads who decide to go on parental leave. All the four left wing parties agreed on the measure before the election and it was even in the government programme, but especially the Social Democrats got cold feet.
He says that he still supports Helle Thorning-Schmidt as PM, but the reliable left wing bloc has now been reduced to 91 seats. A majority in the Folketing requires 90 seats.

Elbæk has had a long career in the cultural world as an entrepreneur and supported others who wanted to start up their own project in that field. He was a member of the city council in Aarhus from 2001 to 2007 and was elected to the Folketing in 2011. He was very surprisingly made Minister of Culture in the new government, and many questioned whether he would be able to manoeuvre in the political world which he didn't seem to fit perfectly into. He resigned as a Minister in December 2012 after heavy criticism from all the non-government parties as it was disclosed that the ministry had held several arrangements and dinners at the Academy of Untamed Creativity where his husband worked and where he himself had formerly been a board member.
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Diouf
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« Reply #127 on: November 26, 2013, 05:16:36 pm »

Danish Government agrees on budget with Liberals and Conservatives
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Persons in picture, from man with the striped tie to the left: Peter Christensen, Financial Spokesman for the Liberals; Margrethe Vestager, Minister of Economic and Interior Affairs and Social Liberal Leader; Brian Mikkelsen, Conservative Spokesman on Industry and Taxation; Bjarne Corydon, Social Democratic Minister of Finance; Lars Barfoed, Conservative Leader; Holger K. Nielsen, Minister of Taxation from the SPP; Lars Løkke Rasmussen, Liberal Leader

Surprisingly, the Danish Government tonight decided to make an agreement on the budget for 2014 with the Liberals and the Conservatives. Normally the budgets are agreed upon with the government's support party/parties, but despite long negotiations with Enhedslisten/Unity List - Red Green Alliance, they could not reach an agreement. The main obstacle in the negotiations seemed to be Enhedslisten's demand that it should be inserted into the law that care-requiring persons should have the right to at least two showers a week. The Government argued that it would create too much bureaucracy and that it would circumvent the local democracy which we have just had elections for. Instead the Government offered some other things, including a billion kr (130 milllion euro) for elderly care which the kommuner themselves could decide what to spend on in that area.

As Enhedslisten didn't back down on their demand, the Government instead started negotiating with the Liberals and the Conservatives today and made an agreement a short while ago. The agreement included things that was in the negotiations with Enhedlisten, including the billion kr for the elderly, but other than that there were three main things in the agreement. 800 million kr of tax concessions for companies will go into force a year earlier, 900 million kr to higher job allowances, especially for single parents, and the annulment of the increased allowance for trade union membership which had been in the agreement that the government had planned to do with Enhedslisten.

Basically,this has made Enhedslisten even more angry with the government, and probably created even more dissatisfaction among many members in the SPP and the Social Democrats. The Liberals are quite happy to get some positive media time after a lot of talk about their leader's travel scandal. 
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Tayya
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« Reply #128 on: November 30, 2013, 11:46:05 am »

I recognize this from Borgen.
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Diouf
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« Reply #129 on: December 10, 2013, 11:16:03 am »
« Edited: December 10, 2013, 03:16:16 pm by Diouf »

Danish Minister of Justice forced to resign
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The Danish Minister of Justice Morten Bødskov was today forced to resign after the government's support party Enhedslisten declared that they no longer had confidence in him. So had all the opposition parties and therefore he no longer had a majority of MP's behind him and would not have survived a no-confidence vote.
The reason for the parties' lack of confidence in him is that the lied to the Folketing's Justice Committee about the reason for a cancelled Justice Committee trip to the controversial, anarchic Christiania area. The intelligence service had told the Minister that such a trip would include great threats to their security, especially due to the presence of former DF/DPP leader Pia Kjærsgaard who is not very popular in these sorts of areas. However, the Minister lied and told the committee that the trip was cancelled because the police chief couldn't make it that day. He claims that he told the lie so that the intelligence informant in the area would not be revealed.

This case comes on top of a lot of other negative stories about the minister, and Enhedslisten is not all that pleased with neither him as a right-wing Social Democrat nor the government as a whole right now. Bødskov has been touted as the next Danish EU-commissioner, and I'm not sure that this case makes that less likely.
Recently, the leader of the intelligence service has resigned after a number of bad cases, the last one related to the abovementioned case as documents had revealed that the intelligence service had, at least planned, looking in Pia Kjærsgaard's calendar to find a date for the trip where she could not make it. Whether they actually did is not clear yet.

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The Prime Minister is in South Africa for the Mandela memorial ceremony and received his resignation via sms. Bødskov was one of her closest allies, and a part of the Coordination Committee where the seven highest ranked/most influential ministers make a lot of the big decisions. No new minister will probably be appointed before she returns home.
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freefair
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« Reply #130 on: December 10, 2013, 11:41:57 am »

Selfies at Funerals!!
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BbIpd_ZCIAELNpf.jpg:large
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Swedish Austerity Cheese
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« Reply #131 on: December 10, 2013, 04:16:46 pm »

Danish Minister of Justice forced to resign
The reason for the parties' lack of confidence in him is that the lied to the Folketing's Justice Committee about the reason for a cancelled Justice Committee trip to the controversial, anarchic Christiania area. The intelligence service had told the Minister that such a trip would include great threats to their security, especially due to the presence of former DF/DPP leader Pia Kjærsgaard who is not very popular in these sorts of areas. However, the Minister lied and told the committee that the trip was cancelled because the police chief couldn't make it that day.

That seems like a very unnecessary thing to lie about. He should join Håkan Juholt's group "Politicians that lie for the fun of it even when there's no reason to."
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Diouf
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« Reply #132 on: December 10, 2013, 04:55:16 pm »
« Edited: December 11, 2013, 04:01:44 am by Diouf »

Danish Minister of Justice forced to resign
The reason for the parties' lack of confidence in him is that the lied to the Folketing's Justice Committee about the reason for a cancelled Justice Committee trip to the controversial, anarchic Christiania area. The intelligence service had told the Minister that such a trip would include great threats to their security, especially due to the presence of former DF/DPP leader Pia Kjærsgaard who is not very popular in these sorts of areas. However, the Minister lied and told the committee that the trip was cancelled because the police chief couldn't make it that day.

That seems like a very unnecessary thing to lie about. He should join Håkan Juholt's group "Politicians that lie for the fun of it even when there's no reason to."

Indeed. Perhaps he had gone too native in terms of his relations with the intelligence service since he believed it so adamant to protect an informant that he would lie to the Committee. I don't see why he could not have given a briefing, perhaps even a confidential one, to the committee where he could have broadly outlined the threat without going to so much detail that it would compromise the informants.
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« Reply #133 on: December 10, 2013, 04:57:18 pm »

Any particular reason for the recent upswing for the government in Denmark? Apparently Rasmussen (stupidly) flew first class to a conference and things have spiraled?
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Diouf
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« Reply #134 on: December 10, 2013, 05:27:48 pm »

Any particular reason for the recent upswing for the government in Denmark? Apparently Rasmussen (stupidly) flew first class to a conference and things have spiraled?

The Rasmussen case was probably the main reason, yes. He flew on first class nine times in his role as President for the Global Green Growth Institute which is mainly funded by development aid from a number of countries, including Denmark. Whether the case directly moved voters or trigged movements which would have perhaps happened otherwise is hard to tell; perhaps a bit of both.

However, in the recent month the government has had a lot of poor cases so it might turn a bit back again. The budget deal with the Conservatives and the Liberals created new tensions among the left wing parties and internally in some of the government parties. Furthermore, it allowed Lars Løkke Rasmussen to once again stand beside the government and talk about being a responsible opposition which has the clout to pull the country in the right direction instead of talking about first class flights.
Also, in addition to Bødskov's resignation, the Social Liberal Minister for Development Cooperation Christian Friis Bach had to resign recently, also due to lying. He had said that the government, which as a co-funder had a seat in the Global Green Growth Institute's board, had not approved the expensive travel rules which Løkke Rasmussen travelled according to. However, they actually had done just that. This part has helped Rasmussen a bit as he used that as a part of his defence, but when the minister said they didn't accept the rules, the tabloid who led the campaign against Rasmussen had a front page which simply said "liar" and accused Rasmussen of making the travel rules himself.

The latest average has 46.5 % for the left-wing parties, and 53.5 % for the right-wing parties. Before the travel case, the average said 43 % for the left-wing parties and 57 % for the right-wing parties.
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Snowguy716
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« Reply #135 on: December 11, 2013, 12:58:32 am »

Wishing Happy Holidays to all of our posters from Scandinavia (except Gustaf, to whom I wish a pleasant, but mediocre holiday)

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And for Gustaf:
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Diouf
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« Reply #136 on: December 11, 2013, 10:46:48 am »
« Edited: December 11, 2013, 11:00:41 am by Diouf »

Merry Christmas. As a political note, I can say that the DF/DPP candidate did not become Mayor in Hvidovre; he ended up supporting the incumbent Social Democrat. However, a part of that deal was that the kommune will now spend more money on celebrating Christmas, including a Christmas tree at the main square, and that the institutions shall serve traditional Danish food.

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Filuwaúrdjan
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« Reply #137 on: December 11, 2013, 10:58:10 am »

An important fightback in the War on Christmas.
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Diouf
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« Reply #138 on: December 11, 2013, 11:00:22 am »

Foreign Minister resigns due to health problems
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The Danish Foreign Minister Villy Søvndal (SF/SPP) today withdrew from politics due to health problems. The Minister has been on a leave of absence since October when he suffered a coronary. A few days later his wife had a heart attack. So due to him and his wife's serious health problems, he is retiring from politics; i.e. not only as a Minister, but also as a MP.

The replacement will be named tomorrow, and since there are now two major posts that need to be filled, it would probably require some reshuffling.

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Diouf
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« Reply #139 on: December 12, 2013, 02:45:01 pm »

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Two ministers were promoted and two new ministers were appointed at today's reshuffle. From the left in the picture we have Jonas Dahl, (SF/SPP) the new Minister of Taxation; Karen Hækkerup, a Social Democrat promoted from Minister of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries to Minister of Justice; the PM; Holger K. Nielsen (SF/SPP) promoted from Minister of Taxation to Foreign Minister; and Dan Jørgensen, who was leader of the Socialdemocratic MEPs and is now Minister of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries.

It is quite remarkable that Holger K. Nielsen is now the Danish Foreign Minister. He was the leader of the SF/SPP before Villy Søvndal, and is probably mostly remembered for his Eurosceptic views. He was the leading voice in the successful campaign against the Maastricht Treaty in 1992 with his famous slogan "Holger og konen siger nej til unionen (Holger and his wife say no to the union)", it rhimes in Danish Wink. Therefore, it was very important for the yes-parties to convince him to support the Maastricht Treaty at the second referendum, so he more or less dictated the four Danish opt-outs. When four opt-outs were accepted, he supported a yes in the second referendum. He was still opposed to the euro in the 2000 referendum, but like most of the SF/SPP he has become much more positive towards the EU and today declared himself an "almost full-blown European". Ironically, he is now in a position where he fights to get the opt-outs removed. The government wrote in its program that there were gonna be referendums about two of the opt-outs, defence and JHA, but no date has been set yet, so it's doubtful whether it's actually gonna happen. The previous government made the same promise without fulfilling it.

Dan Jørgensen was also a slightly controversial appointment due to some of the strong views that he has earlier expressed in that area. He has been very critical of the conditions in the farms which he has called cruelty to animals, he wanted cage eggs to have warning pictures like tobacco, and he wanted to ban mink skin production. The Danish mink industry exports for nearly 10 billion kr (1,34 billion euro) a year.
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Filuwaúrdjan
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« Reply #140 on: December 12, 2013, 02:47:57 pm »

He was the leading voice in the successful campaign against the Maastricht Treaty in 1992 with his famous slogan "Holger og konen siger nej til unionen (Holger and his wife say no to the union)", it rhimes in Danish Wink

Though presumably only to the highly limited extent that anything can rhyme in Danish... Tongue
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Swedish Austerity Cheese
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« Reply #141 on: December 13, 2013, 07:39:50 pm »

He was the leading voice in the successful campaign against the Maastricht Treaty in 1992 with his famous slogan "Holger og konen siger nej til unionen (Holger and his wife say no to the union)", it rhimes in Danish Wink

Though presumably only to the highly limited extent that anything can rhyme in Danish... Tongue

What is this Danish you speak off? I think you mean the sound of choking on too much food in your mouth. 
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Lurker
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« Reply #142 on: December 14, 2013, 07:08:39 pm »

He was the leading voice in the successful campaign against the Maastricht Treaty in 1992 with his famous slogan "Holger og konen siger nej til unionen (Holger and his wife say no to the union)", it rhimes in Danish Wink

Though presumably only to the highly limited extent that anything can rhyme in Danish... Tongue

What is this Danish you speak off? I think you mean the sound of choking on too much food in your mouth. 

I recommend this brilliant clip, from the Norwegian comedy show Ut i vår hage. It pretty much tells you all you need to know about the state of the Danish language. (Almost entirely in English, so can be viewed by our non-Nordic friends as well). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s-mOy8VUEBk
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Diouf
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« Reply #143 on: December 15, 2013, 05:31:34 am »

He was the leading voice in the successful campaign against the Maastricht Treaty in 1992 with his famous slogan "Holger og konen siger nej til unionen (Holger and his wife say no to the union)", it rhimes in Danish Wink

Though presumably only to the highly limited extent that anything can rhyme in Danish... Tongue

What is this Danish you speak off? I think you mean the sound of choking on too much food in your mouth. 

I recommend this brilliant clip, from the Norwegian comedy show Ut i vår hage. It pretty much tells you all you need to know about the state of the Danish language. (Almost entirely in English, so can be viewed by our non-Nordic friends as well). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s-mOy8VUEBk

And perhaps even more about the state of the Norwegian humour Wink
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Lurker
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« Reply #144 on: December 15, 2013, 06:04:27 am »

He was the leading voice in the successful campaign against the Maastricht Treaty in 1992 with his famous slogan "Holger og konen siger nej til unionen (Holger and his wife say no to the union)", it rhimes in Danish Wink

Though presumably only to the highly limited extent that anything can rhyme in Danish... Tongue

What is this Danish you speak off? I think you mean the sound of choking on too much food in your mouth. 

I recommend this brilliant clip, from the Norwegian comedy show Ut i vår hage. It pretty much tells you all you need to know about the state of the Danish language. (Almost entirely in English, so can be viewed by our non-Nordic friends as well). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s-mOy8VUEBk

And perhaps even more about the state of the Norwegian humour Wink

Ouch. Tongue

In our defense, while there are many terrible Norwegians comedians, Eia/Tufte are often pretty good.

Of course, the comments section on that page is far funnier than the clip itself (as tends to be the case on youtube).
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Silent Hunter
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« Reply #145 on: December 15, 2013, 08:30:58 am »

Selfies at Funerals!!
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BbIpd_ZCIAELNpf.jpg:large

How has that gone down in Denmark?
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change08
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« Reply #146 on: December 15, 2013, 08:40:01 am »

Selfies at Funerals!!
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BbIpd_ZCIAELNpf.jpg:large

How has that gone down in Denmark?

I thought Helle Thorning Schmidt was already seen as quite aloof after things like this
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cnx4NUQsTGA
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Diouf
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« Reply #147 on: December 15, 2013, 09:03:31 am »

Selfies at Funerals!!
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BbIpd_ZCIAELNpf.jpg:large

How has that gone down in Denmark?

Pretty well. A few has referred to some of the negative treatment it got in some British and American newspapers so it could damage her/Denmark's reputation, but the vast majority thinks it's funny and Twitter and Facebook has been flooded with all sorts of politician and political commentator selfies.

Here two of the Liberal Alliance MPs make a selfie with Helle: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bqp9yRxgaIQ
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« Reply #148 on: December 18, 2013, 11:04:56 am »

First Gentleman of Denmark, Stephen Kinnock is thinking of running for the UK parliament in the Aberavon constituency, a historically ultra-safe Labour seat where the incumbent is retiring.

Interesting timing: elections due in both the UK and Denmark in 2015 (probably sooner for Denmark). Maybe the couple have got Helle down as a one-term wonder.

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2013/12/17/helle-thorning-schmidt-stephen-kinnock_n_4461847.html
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Filuwaúrdjan
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« Reply #149 on: December 18, 2013, 11:18:54 am »

Perhaps, but then maybe he's just politically ambitious in his own right.
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