Union of Conscientiously Work-Shy Elements
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The Union of Conscientiously Work-Shy Elements (Danish: Sammenslutning af Bevidst Arbejdssky Elementer) was an unusually successful frivolous political party in Denmark. It was founded in Aarhus in 1979 by a comedian, Jacob Haugaard (born 1952), and a few friends. Haugaard stood as a candidate in Aarhus in each parliamentary election, until September 1994 when he was very unexpectedly elected to the Folketing with 23,253 personal votes, thereby winning a "kredsmandat" (a locally based seat in parliament).
He made the following promises in the 1994 election:
- Tail winds on all cycle paths
- Better weather
- Better Christmas presents
- Less sex in school staff rooms (withdrawn during the campaign – he said it had been brought to his attention that sex in the staff room was a long-established privilege for teachers and as such could not be abolished)
- More whales in the fjord of Randers
- The right to impotency
- More Renaissance furniture in IKEA
- 8 hours of spare time, 8 hours of rest, 8 hours of sleep (a parody of a popular slogan of the eight-hour day movement: "Eight hours' labour, Eight hours' recreation, Eight hours' rest")
- Nutella in army field rations
- The placing of a public toilet in the park in Aarhus where he spent his state party funding on serving beer and sausages to his voters after each election.
- More bread for the ducks in parks
The last three promises were actually fulfilled during his term in office.
While the party had been intended as a joke, he found himself often having the deciding vote in a hung parliament, and took his duties seriously until the parliamentary election in March 1998. He then announced his retirement from politics.
- "If work is so healthy, then why not give it to the sick?"
- "Work? We can't be bothered. That's what we have the Germans for." (from a song)
- "Jacob Haugaard". Copenhagen Post. 3 March 2013. Retrieved 14 May 2014.
- Kaare R. Skou, Dansk politik A-Å /Lindhardt og Ringhof, 2010), ISBN 978-8711411322, p. 456. available at Google Books (in Danish).
- Jacob Haaugaard, Det ærede medlem: Hofnarren! - en rigtig Århus-historie om Jacob Haugaards vej til Folketinget - og om livet der (Daniel, 1999), ISBN 978-8798731306 (in Danish).
- "En politisk vittighed" (in Danish). Aarhusportalen. 31 December 2004. Retrieved 22 May 2014.