Candidate Nicole van Gemert led a demonstration last Saturday which offered a vivid representation of the placing in the hands of the market of public services and public property under pressure from Brussels. In Utrecht, shoppers were confronted by a mysterious and besuited man who claimed to have bought part of the public footpath on the Oudegracht ('Old Canal'), in the heart of the city's picturesque centre. The 'suit' said that he had bought the section of the path, which he had cordoned off with ribbons, through Brussels estate agents (realtors). “Europe says that all public property must be sold off, because the market is the solution to all problems," the man called out as he carried a 'Sold' sign around his property. Passers-by took the trouble to go around the cordoned-off section, as the new owner let them know that they would soon have to pay to cross it. "I can do whatever I like, because what was public property is now my property," the proud new owner of a bit of the Oudegracht told them.