Germans Hate Monopolies

Unless they are labor monopolies, of course. They’re always showing Verständnis (understanding) for strikes. And this despite the fact that only about a fifth of employees in Germany are union members.

Strike

It might be a bit different this time, however. The latest hostage-taking of millions of German travelers over the weekend (a weekend in which there are more travelers than usual due to school breaks in most German Länder) during a 50+ hour strike by the GDL train drivers’ union is finally starting to piss people off here.

It’s becoming increasing clear that the union’s boss Claus Weselsky, is suffering from “delusions of omnipotence” and that his thirst for power has less to do with the interests of the train drivers then he would like us to believe. And the passengers? What passengers?

By the way, unlike labor monopolies, Germans don’t generally like leaders with “delusions of omnipotence” anymore.

Es ist erstaunlich, dass sich die Lokführer auf dieses Spiel einlassen. Denn Weselsky ist gerade dabei, seine eigene Klientel durch den Dreck zu ziehen. Für die Erschließung neuer Kompetenzfelder lässt er es zu, dass ganz Deutschland aufschreit: Stoppt die Lokführer! Dabei geht es hier gar nicht um die Lokführer. Die werden von der GDL bestens und uneingeschränkt vertreten, selbst wenn sie bei der Konkurrenz organisiert sind.

Germans Never Lose Their Heads

They pay up first.

German Hostages

Seeing German heads cut off by ISIS and Co. or anybody else out there would never do as it could lead an already nervous German citizenry into thinking that they might be part of the real world after all. And that could lead to dire consequences indeed.

The German government is sure to deny having paid any ransom here, of course. This is sound policy because not to have denied paying ransom to terrorists after having paid ransom to terrorists would only encourage these and other terrorists to take even more hostages, most likely hostages from other countries where ransom is not paid for hostages, and then kill these non-German hostages later once that ransom has not been paid.

Die zwei entführten Deutschen auf den Philippinen sind nach Berichten eines lokalen Radiosenders frei. Das von den Terroristen geforderte Lösegeld sei gezahlt worden.

Drittländer

Or “third countries.” Beautiful German weapon sale of the week.

Third countries

Because somebody has to admire them.

The German government has approved over 1.4 billion euros worth of weapons sales to third countries during the first six months of this year.

Deutsche Firmen dürfen unter Wirtschaftsminister Sigmar Gabriel (SPD) beinahe ebenso gute Rüstungsgeschäfte mit sogenannten Drittländern machen wie unter der schwarz-gelben Vorgängerregierung.

I Know What You’re Thinking

Did he fire 47 shots or only 46?

Tatort

Well to tell you the truth in all this excitement I kinda lost track myself. But being this is a Heckler & Koch MP5, the baddest little German machine gun in all of Wiesbaden ITSELF and would blow your head clean off, you’ve gotta ask yourself one question: “Do I feel lucky?” Well, do ya, Depp?

Just when you think you can’t watch another Tatort – or try to watch one – they come along with something like this. Kunst. This guy always does good stuff on this show anyway but that one he did last night really took the Kuchen. YouTube around on “Im Schmerz Geboren” if you’re interested in finding out more.

How Can That Be, One Out Of Three?

Oh no. Not this lady again.

Mentally Ill

The latest greatest medical insurance study is out and it is like so totally full of it that I feel like running off to my Arzt (doctor) right this minute to get krankgeschrieben (written up sick) only he’s closed now, of course, which is probably for the best.

Anyway, this study claims that one out of three Berliners is mentally ill! One out of three? Can you believe that bullshit? Anybody who lives here knows that it’s two-thirds easy.

In Berlin waren mehr als 34 Prozent und in Brandenburg knapp 29 Prozent der erwerbstätigen Versicherten im Jahr 2012 von einer psychischen Erkrankung betroffen. Auch die Zahl der Krankschreibungen wegen Depressionen und anderer psychischer Leiden war in Berlin weitaus höher als im Bundesdurchschnitt.

Double Your Pleasure, Double Your Fun!

On the double! And no, you’re not seeing double. Electricity prices have nearly doubled for German consumers since 2000.

Double

So I guess this famous German Energiewende (energy turnaround) is what one could call a two-edged sword. You know, something having a double meaning?

Germans are leading a double life if you ask me. If they still think that this is going to work, I mean. So stop the double-talk already, people. Get this Energiewende nonsense over with on the double before you end up doubled up with laughter – and those men in the white coats come to take you away.

Etwas läuft schief am deutschen Strommarkt: Während Stadtwerke sich seit Jahren über sinkende Strompreise freuen, hat sich der Preis für Verbraucher einer Studie zufolge seit 2000 fast verdoppelt.

Where Are Germans The Happiest?

Well if you go by the annual German happiness map, it sure ain’t Berlin. Berliners rank 14th out of 19.

Happy

But at least they’re in good bad company. The whole former GDR East surrounding the city seems to be absolutely miserable. I think they need to start asking different questions here if they ever want to turn these results around. You know, like where do Germans like to moan the most?

Germans’ average happiness level of seven places them ninth in Europe, behind leaders Norway (8.8), Sweden (8.2) and the Netherlands (7.9).

Because They Can

Train drivers’ union GDL called for the next senseless nationwide strike starting tonight. But all they’re really doing here is showing the other train drivers’ unions out there (there are three, I think) who they think is the baddest union what’s in charge. The main thing is that hostages will be taken.

Strike

Someone once said: “If unions raise wage rates in a particular occupation or industry, they necessarily make the amount of employment available in the occupation or industry less than it otherwise would be – just as any higher price cuts down the amount purchased. The effect is an increased number of persons seeking other jobs, which forces down wages in other occupations.”

I know that this applies to a lesser degree for train drivers but that’s just what you’ve got here in Germany, on a broad scale. The overpaid on the inside and the underpaid on the out. On the down and out? And yet everyone here continues to show “understanding” for strikes like this.

Es ist nicht etwa so, dass die Lokführer mehr Geld fordern und die Bahn ihnen das verweigert. Die Reisenden zeigen Verständnis für einen Streik, den sie nicht einmal ansatzweise durchdrungen haben. “Der GDL-Führung geht es aber darum, das Terrain von Konkurrenzgewerkschaften erobern zu wollen. Dafür nimmt sie Schaden für Kunden, Mitarbeiter und Unternehmen in Kauf.“

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