[Ed. – A narrow escape. European news agencies and politicians feared that someone really unseemly might get elected instead.]
They called it an “election gimmick” and a “campaign gag”, but the new president-elect of Austria once presided over his party’s campaign that declared: “Anyone who loves Austria must be sh*t”.
Alexander Van der Bellen – who appears to have defeated the Freedom Party’s Norbert Hofer by around just 30,000 of nearly five million votes – has a track record of opposing the nation state as a concept, and his own as a reality.
In 2007, while he was leader of the Austrian Greens, the party published a picture of a dog with the Austrian flag in its mouth. The poster read: “Take your flag for your gag”, followed by the declaration that anyone who loves the country “must be sh*t”.
The flag “joke” was a play on a campaign urging dog owners to place their dog’s excrement in bags and trash cans. The Austrian greens replaced the bag with a flag of Austria in the image (right). …
Newspapers drew attention to another more recent incident, whereby a leading Green activist declared: “Austria [is a] lousy piece of sh*t!” when discussing the country’s recent border controls to deal with Europe’s migrant crisis. “These are facts, not subjective opinion,” Georg H. posted to his Facebook page.