We’ll Just Jump Straight To Phase 3 Instead

Sheer panic.

Ministry denies Germany set to declare Phase 2 of emergency gas plan.

This economic minister belongs to a political party (the Greens) that won’t even consider the possibility – under Germany’s present catastrophic, self-inflicted energy situation – of extending the lives of Germany’s three remaining nuclear power plants past the end of this year. Thank goodness this has nothing to do with ideology and ideologues. He’s just from the government and he’s here to help.

Germany declared the first phase of the emergency plan on March 30, calling for crisis team meetings of energy suppliers, operators and government authorities to assess the energy security situation for Europe’s biggest economy.

In the second alert phase, the market would still be expected to handle the disruption without government market intervention.

I Didn’t Do Nothin’

The other kids were jumping off the bridge. What, me worry?

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has not only revealed the willful ignorance of German politicians, businesspeople, and voters to Vladimir Putin’s regime, it has cast a dark backwards shadow over the tenure of former chancellor Angela Merkel.

Merkel’s lack of regrets illustrates the fallacies of Germany’s Russia policy – Russia’s war of annihilation against Ukraine and the unhinged rhetoric of its elites raise urgent questions about the future for Europeans, for the trans-Atlantic alliance, and for global order.

For a generational cohort of German politicians, some of whom are retired and some still in power, it also raises urgent questions about the past. What could they have known, or at least predicted? What bloodshed could they have prevented?

Reality Can Be An Ugly Thing

When you’re greener than Green.

Which is a pretty hard thing to be. Unless you live in Germany. It goes like this: Turn off your nuclear energy plants and never mention that ugly n-word again (think Voldemort). Demand all coal-burning power plants be shut down ASAP too. Actually BELIEVE (not think, just believing is enough) that wind turbines and solor panels can actually power a country like Germany. While doing that, let yourself become 50% energy dependent on Russian gas and oil despite repeated warnings from your European neighbors and that awful evil US-Amerika that’s always saying mean things (or at least it used to). Then something like Ukraine comes along, get it? What’s not to like? We’re here from the German Green government and we’re here to help. We created the problem in the first place but now we’re the ones who are going to fix it. You can thank us later, voters. They’ll get re-elected, of course. You can’t make this stuff up, people. And even if you could no one would believe you.

Germany to Bring Back Old Coal Plants as Russia Cuts Gas Supply – Government to offer financing to ensure storage is increased.

Country to rely more on coal-fired power plants, minister says.

What’s 40%?

“We’ll just build some more of those solar windmill thingies to compensate and make Germany greener than ever,” an unnamed German Green government minister said. “The rest of the world really marvels at our green energy utopia here, you know,” he added. “They’re like totally green with envy.”

Russia‘s announcement that it would reduce natural gas flows through a key European pipeline by roughly 40% appears to be a political move rather than a result of technical problems, Germany’s vice chancellor said Wednesday.

The reduced flows follow Russia‘s halt of natural gas supplies to Bulgaria, Poland, Finland, Netherlands, Denmark as Europe works to reduce its dependence on Russian energy amid the war in Ukraine. Gas demand has fallen after the end of the winter heating season, but European utilities are racing to refill storage ahead of next winter with prices high and supplies uncertain.

“A Limit To Fiscal Capacity?”

Is there really such a thing? Someone should inform the Biden administration immediately.

Germany’s federal government has reached the limit of its fiscal capacity, its finance minister said, with extra financing to cope with the coronavirus pandemic, the impact of the war in Ukraine and a climate fund having exhausted government coffers.

“There are no reserves in the 2022 federal budget,” Christian Lindner was quoted by news website t-online as saying on Saturday, Reuters reported.

He warned against granting further financial support before the autumn to citizens to offset the impact of rising inflation. “I advise letting the measures taken so far take effect,” he said.

“We Were All Wrong”

That’s right. All you Germans were.

‘We were all wrong’: how Germany got hooked on Russian energy – Germany has been forced to admit it was a terrible mistake to become so dependent on Russian oil and gas. So why did it happen?

Why? That’s easy. Because Germans always want an Extrawurst (an extra sausage, as in special treatment). Well, they’re sure getting special treatment these days.

When Putin invaded Ukraine in February, Germany faced a particular problem. Its rejection of nuclear power and its transition away from coal meant that Germany had very few alternatives to Russian gas. Berlin has been forced to accept that it was a cataclysmic error to have made itself so dependent on Russian energy – whatever the motives behind it. The foreign minister, Annalena Baerbock, says Germany failed to listen to the warnings from countries that had once suffered under Russia’s occupation, such as Poland and the Baltic states.

And then, of course, there were the warnings from EVIL US-Trump-Amerika itself. Those just had to be ignored. Well, wake up and smell the Kaffee is all I can say now.

Germany’s Coal Doesn’t Stink

That’s because it’s Green Coal. No, not Grünkohl. That’s kale.

Anyway, Germany’s Green Utopia will soon be here, no matter what. Just ask Germany’s Green Economy Minister. Of course, it might take a little longer than the Greens originally planned, but still.

Germany to Bring Back Coal Power Plants If Russia Cuts Gas – Germany plans to bring back coal- and oil-fired power plants should Russia cut off natural gas shipments to Europe’s largest economy.

Economy Minister Robert Habeck will on Tuesday present an emergency decree enabling the government to bring back the facilities in case of gas shortages, according to the proposed legislation seen by Bloomberg.

Inflation Tax 101

Thanks for the warning, German central bank, one of the main culprits behind the problem you’re warning about.

Germans are suffering large cuts in real pay, Bundesbank report says – Workers in Germany are experiencing large cuts in their purchasing power as modest pay rises fail to keep up with record-high inflation, the country’s central bank said in a report on Monday.

It’s an age-old dirty trick. The EU, the central banks and the German government itself are pursuing policies that magically generate more tax revenue without openly raising taxes. If prices go up 10%, say, the tax receipts increase 10% too. Inflation also reduces government debt (if they borrowed 1000 but only have to pay back 900 in real terms). But thanks for the warning. That’s very considerate of you.

German Of The Day: Gaslobbyist

That means gas lobbyist.

Germany to close Schroeder’s office in repudiation of ex-chancellor – Gerhard Schroeder’s publicly funded office is to be closed and its remaining staff reallocated amid mounting dismay at the former German chancellor’s refusal to distance himself from Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Gerhard Schröder to lose Bundestag office this week. The SPD, the Greens and the FDP want to strip the former chancellor (SPD) of some privileges immediately: In a draft for the budget committee, he will be deprived of offices and staff.

A Promise Is A Promise

Not.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz promised two months ago to deliver a substantial increase in defense spending. Where is that money now? Funny you should ask, since Mr. Scholz’s waffling on his signature pledge is a growing controversy in Berlin.

The “turning point” speech Mr. Scholz delivered on Feb. 27 included two promises: increase the annual military budget to at least 2% of GDP, in line with North Atlantic Treaty Organization targets, and create a one-time €100 billion ($105 billion) special fund for procurement. Crucially, the procurement fund would be exempt from the constitutional limit on government debt, although the regular military budget wouldn’t be…

Yet Mr. Scholz is struggling to say what he meant by his twin promises. His February speech neglected to specify whether he meant he’d spend 2% of GDP plus €100 billion, or whether he’d spend 2% of GDP including the €100 billion. The distinction matters.