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Is This Man the Obama of the Czech Republic? Or Just Some Dude with Face Tattoos and Piercings?

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bill-swift - January 10, 2013

Meet Vladimir Franz. He's a composer and painter (including the face apparently) living in the Czech Republic and he's polling in third place in the country's 2013 presidential elections. He has no political background, a self-proclaimed deficiency on economic matters and no campaign posters. Yet somehow he's managed to make himself a somewhat-serious contender for President of the country. How messed up does a country have to be that a dude with tats covering his entire face has a better chance of being president than several much more capable candidates?

Would you be surprised to hear the answer is not all that much? The Czech Republic actually has a low crime rate and since the fall of the Iron Curtain in 1989 has become the 6th most visited European city. Franz's (or 'Avatar' as he's been nicknamed for--I hope--obvious reason to you) grassroots campaign is based around bringing objectivity back to politics in a system that he believes has lost its ability to take a look back and address itself. And while he's still far off from the two front-runners of the race, Franz has a bevy of volunteers loyal to him and achieved 88,000 signatures on his petition to run, well over the 50k needed.

So while there's still probably a snowball's chance in hell that he'll win, we wish Franz the best of luck. If for no other reason than I want to travel to Prague and get handed back change with his inked up face on the bills.

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