German Of The Day: Lieber ein Ende mit Schrecken als ein Schrecken ohne Ende

That means “better a terrifying end than unending terror.” In other words, it’s time for Greece to get those drachma machines running again.

Greece

But the Greeks already know this themselves. That’s what they just voted for. Sure, we’ll get to watch how Greece and the EU (Germany) play around with each other for a few weeks as if both sides are tying to find a new solution for a solution that has already long been in place but in the end Greece will leave the EU. This new Greek government is the undertaker man (don’t shake that guy’s hand!). They will point their fingers at Germany on the way out telling Greek voters “we tried everything we could, but…” and then, well, it’s back to the real world again. And this will be a good thing for Greece – in the long run.

Hey, this reminds me of another German saying: Geh mit Gott, aber geh! Go with God, but go!

Entgegen allen Warnungen aus Deutschland und Europa lehnt die griechische Regierung Gespräche mit den internationalen Geldgebern ab. Sie seien in Athen nicht willkommen.

15 Cool German Illnesses You Can Only Get Here

Mostly because 1) you probably can’t pronounce them and 2) they don’t really exist.

Zivilizationskrankheit

Germans aren’t hypochondriacs, by the way. They’re Hypochonder.

14. ZIVILISATIONSKRANKHEIT

Zivilisationskrankheit, or “civilization sickness” is a problem caused by living in the modern world. Stress, obesity, eating disorders, carpal tunnel syndrome and diseases like type 2 diabetes are all examples.

Russian Propaganda? What Russian Propaganda?

The speaker of the Russian Duma has asked a parliamentary committee to study a proposal to condemn the reunification of Germany in 1990.

Annexation

Sergei Naryshkin earlier this week faced scathing criticism of Russia’s annexation of Crimean peninsula when he spoke at the Parliament Assembly of Europe.

Russian news agencies say Communist deputy Nikolai Ivanov on Wednesday proposed a resolution to condemn what he called the “annexation” of East Germany in 1990. Ivanov said that unlike in Crimea, there was no popular vote to support the German reunification.

…Deutsche Welle, an international television and radio broadcaster akin to the British Broadcasting Corp.’s World Service, plans to launch a new multimedia English-language service called DWNews in April. Deutsche Welle President Peter Limbourg has said the new service is designed to “defy [Russian President Vladimir] Putin ’s propaganda.”

Opening The Self-Driving Vehicle Autobahn Test Stretch Will Be Easy

Designing the self-driving German vehicles to operate on them will be a completely different matter, however.

Autobahn

Just think of the programming issues involved:

1) They must all be programmed to travel at a safe speed (no less than 250 kph).

2) Each vehicle must always hog the left lane, continually flash its headlights and always have the right of way.

3) Programming the three-inches-away-from-the-bumper tailgaiting function for one vehicle will be a piece of cake but how are you going to get all the other self-driving vehicles out there to do this simultaneously?

4) Giving each other the finger (the German bird) will also be a real challenge as no one will be in the damned car.

5) And what about when these vehicles reach their final destination? How can you possibly program each one to insist on taking the same parking space?

The stretch on the A9 autobahn — which links Munich and Berlin — is supposed to give the industry the opportunity to “test and optimize new innovations in an adapted infrastructure that offers data connections and measuring tools,” a ministry spokesman said. No official launch date has been announced.

This Sick Lady Right Here Just Will Not Go Away

Nor will they take a new picture of her, either. It’s just that good.

Sick Lady

First she had mental illness issues.

Then she got really depressed because of her mental illness issues.

Now she’s totally stressed out because she lives in North Rhine-Westphalia, which is known to cause a lot of depression and mental illness issues. If you live there, I mean. Or at least it’s known for that now.

Word has it namely (a new study) that people there suffer more than elsewhere in Germany because they don’t move enough, they don’t eat healthy enough food and they drink too much (alcohol). And they’re always running into this wacky lady here, looks like. Wherever they go in North Rhine-Westphalia. I think I need a drink now, too.

Stress ist laut einer bundesweiten Studie am häufigsten für Menschen in Nordrhein-Westfalen ein Problem. Nur 8 Prozent der Menschen in Nordrhein-Westfalen leben in Sachen Bewegung, Ernährung, Stress und Alkohol laut einer Studie rundum gesund.

German Poverty?

Nice try. This is another one of my favorite German myths. You can claim that poverty exists here all you want but everybody knows that poverty only exists in the real world and has nothing at all to do with this country. Or could it be that I am the one with an “unrealistic” definition of what poverty is?

Poverty

Report: About 3.1 million wage and salary earners in Germany had an income below the poverty threshold, according to Saturday’s edition of the Saarbrücker Zeitung newspaper.

You have to understand how Germany works to know that this is ridiculous. For one thing, nobody has to work in Germany if he or she does not want to – ever. They get their rent paid and a low monthly allowance (and then work illegally on the side in a lot of cases) indefinitely = for life, if they want to (everybody know how or knows someone who does).  Many people choose to live this way (I know a few personally). Their welfare system is called Hartz IV, by the way. So like, are you a victim of “poverty” if you choose to be? In a country that has the money to pay your way, I mean?

And you must also understand how a German defines poverty in Germany: “Every second low wage worker, some 1.5 million Germans, would not be able to pay for a one-week holiday per year outside their own four walls. About 600,000 workers were forgoing having their own car because they could not afford it.”

OMG. It’s certainly a cold, cruel world out there when you can’t fly off to Mallorca twice a year like everybody else does and/or keep your expensive German sports car on the road as God intended you to (even though you don’t believe in God, but still).

“The number of workers who earn scarcely or marginally more than the government unemployment benefits (Hartz IV) is alarmingly high.”

PS: Speaking of poverty, get your free copy of Dumb Deutsch here. Offer ends Monday.

North Korea Demands Film Not Being Shown At Film Festival Not Be Shown At Film Festival

And when North Korea demands something, the Berlinale listens.

Interview

Organizers here quickly buckled under pressure and have now sheepishly agreed to take the film not being shown on their program off their program immediately. The wussies.

Somewhere along the line, because of the February 5th start dates, North Korea’s Foreign Ministry misinterpreted that The Interview was an official entrant in the 65th annual Berlinale. As a result, North Korean’s state-run broadcast issued a statement demanding that the film not screen at the festival, which it’s not and never was scheduled to. An organizer for the film festival spoke to the North Korean ambassador to Germany to clear up the misunderstanding.

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