This pig foot could be yours!

After you strap a Polish firecracker on it and blow it up on New Year’s Eve, that is. Although… Why you would want to do this is beyond me (like lots of things that get done here).

Germans love blowing stuff up on New Year’s, you see, but they just don’t trust foreign explosive imports (sound familiar?). And a certain annual anti-Polish-firework-movement has even become a near-ritual kinda thang here. German newspapers and cops love to issue dramatic warnings about Polen Böller (Polish fireworks) right before the fireworks hit the fan.

And that’s what this picture is all about. Cops in Berlin and elsewhere are trying to frighten the pants off everybody by showing them what an illegal Polish firecracker can do to an unarmed pig’s foot (don’t worry, they had the decency to kill the pig first). German firecrackers just don’t put holes in your pigs feet like that, I assume.

Anyways, be careful out there this year, people. Blow up your pigs feet and other objects properly and with great care. And buy German. First, I mean.

And while we’re at it, Happy New Year!


McCheckpoint Charlie?

McWhy not?

You’ve just got to ask yourself how it could have taken this long to begin with.

Few traces of the wall remain but the site is home to a replica of a hut housing US border guards behind sandbags as well as a “You Are Entering the American Sector” sign.

Nein, nein and nein again!

And I’ll hold my breath until my face turns blue if you don’t believe me. Geez. This is almost like the good-old Gerhard Schroeder days – saying no before anybody asks anything of you – and that’s even with you-know-who now in office (what’s-his-name is long gone, remember?).

That Germany won’t ever really deploy real troops in a real war in a real country called Afghanistan is certainly no secret to anyone anywhere, least of all the Taliban, but that Germany’s new Foreign Minister is prepared to puff and pout and not even attend the upcoming Afghanistan conference in London should it “degrade” to a pure troop deployment conference, well, that’s kind of special (not).

As predicted, Germany has dragged its feet this past month in the face of calls from President Obama to help with a push to defeat the Taliban with more combat troops, holding off from any decision regarding troop numbers until after the London talks. Now it seems the Germans have reached a new phase: They are now even prepared to hold off on taking part on any talks before holding off on making a decision which, as all the world can clearly see, has been made long ago; nein. Or no, if you prefer.

“Mit seinem Nein zu einer deutlichen Aufstockung des Bundeswehrkontingentes steht Westerwelle ja beileibe nicht alleine. Diese Position ist auch den USA längst bekannt. Aber durch die versuchte Vorfestlegung eines Konferenzverlaufs, den Deutschland nur partiell beeinflussen kann, isoliert der Minister sich und die ganze Bundesregierung innerhalb des Bündnisses. Das ist einfach dumm.”

“The fears are completely ungrounded”

Why are there no naked scanners in Germany? Because Germans are all privacy protectionists, you nekkid fool.

But there might be hope for them (us?) yet. And not just because of Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab’s attempt to blow up Delta Airlines flight 253 for Christmas. These new real modern naked scanner machine thingies have been changed so that body dimensions like, you know, genitals, can not be distinguished – no matter how distinguished they are.

„It is advised to get to the airport early.”

Show all over

I mean snow, of course. And not just in Copenhagen either.

I know, I know. This is weather, not climate. I’m not stupid. Or more stupider than the next guy, I mean.

At the same time a draft document was leaked that would ask the world to keep temperature rise below 2C (3.6F). It would ask rich countries to cut greenhouse gases, but does not yet have legally-binding numerical targets. It would also ask developing countries to take action to reduce emissions for the first time. The leaked text caused anger among delegates just as President Obama arrived at the conference to “save the Earth”.

Our coal doesn’t stink

You count them. Environment here, global warming there (while pointing the finger at everybody else in both directions at the same time), when it comes to building new coal-burning power plants in Germany, well, that’s different. No protests in the streets here (or in Copenhagen) about that one.

“The following list shows the status of controversial new coal-fired power plant projects in Germany, which are the focus of environmentalists campaigning against climate-harming carbon emissions from the coal-to-power generation process.”