posted on Jan, 14 2003 @ 06:19 PM
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Embattled German Leader Lampooned in Internet Game
Tue January 14, 2003 09:21 AM ET
BERLIN (Reuters) - A new Internet game is poking fun at German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder's unpopular tax increases, challenging players to yank
the shirts off the backs of unsuspecting shoppers with a hook.
It follows the "last shirt for Schroeder" campaign last year when thousands of Germans who thought Schroeder wanted to tear the last shirt off their
backs with his plans to raise taxes sent shirts to his office in protest.
When the cartoon chancellor, shown with Schroeder's trademark smile and clad in a trenchcoat, successfully grabs a shirt from a passer-by at a
supermarket parking lot, he lets out a delighted and infectious laugh.
"I'll get you too in the end, matey," a faithful imitation of his voice calls out whenever the player fails to hook a shirt.
The chancellor's popularity has slumped since he narrowly won re-election last September and angered Germans with a surprise set of tax increases to
plug a gaping budget hole.
The game, devised by a group of web game developers, can be accessed at www.das-kanzlerspiel.de. Its authors say around 32,000 people have accessed
the site since its launch on December 19.
Schroeder was not amused by the recent number one hit "The Tax Song" which mocks his broken election promises. He called the song's performer and
comedian Elmar Brandt a "parasite" and "freeloader."
Brandt has written a new song about Schroeder, called "Everything Will Be Okay," and is bidding to represent Germany with it in this year's
Eurovision Song Contest in Riga, Latvia, in May.
Don't forget to play the game!