Back To Black

Oh boy. The one thing that nobody wants in this country is precisely what this country is about to get. Another GroKo (don’t ask what it is, just listen to the way it sounds).

Black

Angela Merkel’s conservatives have made a deal with the Social Democrats for a new coalition contract in Germany. Let’s whip out the music and celebrate or something.

The only thing that could stop it now is a vote by SPD members in a week or two on whether to accept the coalition agreement or not. And you can always count on the SPD to let you down.

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Made In Germany

Speaking of sanctions… Neither Iran nor Syria will ever have to worry about those, either. Not as long as Germany is in the picture, I mean.

Germany

Germany’s Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control approved a license for a company to sell military applicable technology to Iranian companies that subsequently was used in Syrian regime chemical weapons attacks, reported the German publication Bild on Monday.

The German company Krempel, located near the southern city of Stuttgart, sold electronic press boards to Iranian companies that were used in the production of rockets.

Deutsche Bauteile in Assads Giftgas-Raketen – „Der konventionelle Gefechtskopf wurde entfernt und mit einem großen Gaszylinder ersetzt.“ Die Kennzeichnung aller Raketen verrate, dass sie „2016 produziert wurden und während des Konfliktes aus dem Iran geliefert wurden“.

“Sanctions Against North Korea Apparently Ineffective”

Like, duh. How could they be effective if countries like Germany, and a number of other “cooperative States,” keep letting the North Koreans get around them?

Korea

North Korea procured equipment and technology for its ballistics missiles program using its embassy in Berlin, the head of Germany’s domestic intelligence agency has said.

“We determined that procurement activities were taking place there, from our perspective with an eye on the missile program, as well as the nuclear program to some extent,” BfV head Hans-Georg Maassen told public broadcaster NDR in an interview.

Falsche Ladepapiere, ungewöhnliche Schifffahrtsrouten, das Verladen von Öl auf hoher See: Nordkorea umgeht offenbar systematisch alle bestehenden internationalen Sanktionen. Ein brisanter UN-Bericht bringt nun eine Reihe kooperierender Staaten in Bedrängnis.

Can Somebody Pick Up The German Army In Mali?

I mean, if it’s on your way and not too much of an inconvenience? They want to come home now but their airplane is broken.

Mali

The Bundeswehr, one of NATO’s largest militaries, is now a steady source of news about planes that can’t fly, tanks that break down and troops that admire the Nazis. So what exactly has gone wrong in Germany’s army?

Quite simple, really. These are soldiers who are not allowed to be soldiers in an army that is not allowed to be an army – other than to serve as an excuse for being able to export lots of way cool and expensive military equipment that works fine everywhere else but here. There’s a lack of culture in Germany regarding its military and its responsibility as a partner, in other words.

Insgesamt 89 in Mali eingesetzte deutsche Soldaten warten seit Tagen auf eine Rückflugmöglichkeit aus dem westafrikanischen Krisenstaat in den Heimaturlaub.

Germany

Beautiful German weapon sales of the week.

Germany

Because somebody has to admire them.

The number of Germans who have acquired weapons permits has risen considerably over the past two years. Having the requisite documentation allows people in the country to carry things like non-lethal gas pistols in public. In January 2016, just under 301,000 people had such a permit; in December 2017 there were over 557,000.

Jeepers. What makes the Germans so uptight these days?

Somalia Now Finally At Peace

So it’s time for the German Bundeswehr troops stationed there to leave. All five (5) of them.

Somalia

They couldn’t have done it without you five guy, guys. Whatever it was they done did with you. I’d skip the parade, though, if I were you.

Derzeit sind in einem schwer gesicherten Camp am Flughafen von Mogadischu fünf deutsche Soldaten im Einsatz. Mit ihrer Mission will die EU den Aufbau einer regulären Armee für Somalia fördern. Kampfeinsätze oder die Begleitung von somalischen Einheiten im Land waren stets ausgeschlossen.

German Of The Day: Freeloader

That means freeloader. Actually, the German word for that is Schmarotzer but this is so-called Neudeutsch or New German (English) so relax about it already.

Freeloader

Anyway… Germany must increase its military spending and take a more active role in conflicts to avoid being seen as one of the world’s biggest freeloaders, an influential diplomat said on Wednesday.

Wolfgang Ischinger, chairman of the Munich Security Conference and Germany’s former envoy to Washington, urged the country’s would-be government coalition partners to reverse their restrictive stance on arms exports and formally back commitments to NATO.

Damn. And this is a diplomat talking here so you can imagine the words less diplomatic folks like you and me would use.

“We should not develop the reputation of being one of the world’s best freeloaders.”

German Of The Day: Dorftrottel

That means village idiot. Dorf = village. Trottel = idiot, get it?

Dorftroggel

Well, some guy who purchased a village in Brandenburg now wants his money back after having taken a closer look at the damned thing. That’s right, a village. In Brandenburg, for crying out loud. With like people living in it and the whole bit. But in Brandenburg, like I said. Brandenburg is a place you leave in Germany, not a place you move to.

Talk about being a Dorftrottel. He wants out of the deal now because he claims that he is not legally competent. How could he be? Village idiots never are. Except in being village idiots, maybe.

The mayor said he met the buyer in December in Alwine. According to local media, the buyer was a little surprised by the crumbling condition of the town, which has now worsened after a recent storm.

More Redistribution Needed

Or that’s what this article seems to suggest.

Redistribution

And this in a country that has already been redistributing the wealth for decades and decades or longer.

When it comes to the superrich, however, there are relatively reliable estimates in the form of lists of the world’s wealthiest people, with the one compiled by the US business magazine Forbes leading the way. A similar list is compiled in Germany by manager magazin. A team of tax experts led by Stefan Bach of the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW) has examined the wealth statistics compiled by the ECB and augmented them with lists identifying the ultrarich. And the team did so for three countries: Germany, France and Spain.

The result: The 45 richest households in Germany own as much wealth as the bottom half of the population. Each group possessed a total of 214 billion euros in assets in 2014.

Bad superrich! Bad!

Why would more redistribution be necessary in a country like Germany? Maybe because it doesn’t work. It can’t work, in fact. It is not, nor has it ever been, a zero sum game, this wealth business. Here or anywhere else. But it’s a great way for redistributing politicians to get elected. Again and again and again. To no avail.

“Most economic fallacies derive from the neglect of this simple insight, from the tendency to assume that there is a fixed pie, that one party can gain only at the expense of another.”