Blog: Chris Brook-CarterThink, don't drink before you fly

Chris Brook-Carter | 9 May 2005

As Icarus found to his peril, having wings is not always a good thing, whatever the energy drink Red Bull might think. And for those in the world of politics there is further to fall than most.

According to an article in the FT last week, young Dutch democrats suffered an embarrassing nose dive when they used the iconic energy drink as a publicity stunt.

The pro-European campaigners had hit the streets armed with "5,000 cans of high energy drink with the Red Bull formula", they said. A "Power to Vote" label and arguments in favour of the constitution would be attached to the cans to help flagging voters to the polling stations on 1 June, spouted an enthusiastic press release.

The stunt, however, was not to Red Bull's liking, which immediately distanced itself from the referendum campaign, and the party has had to drop its plans.

"There is a bit of confusion and there is no involvement of Red Bull. Maybe I shouldn't have put it in the announcement," said sheepish campaign leader Bart Woord in the FT.

"We ordered the energy drink from a French company and it has its own label and logo," he stressed.

And of course the opposition have wasted no time taking advantage. "We try to convince our voters with arguments and not with such actions. It's a little bit silly I think," said Bart Belder, Eurosceptic Dutch MEP.


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