More Crazy Protests Going On Down There In The Middle East Again

I mean over there, of course. Over there in the middle eastern part of Berlin.

Berlin

Angela Merkel has condemned the burning of Israeli symbols during protests against the US decision on Jerusalem. Germany’s interior, foreign and justice ministers have also expressed criticism of the weekend’s protests…

On Sunday, some 2,500 demonstrators marched through Berlin’s Neukölln district and burned flags with the Star of David, the Berliner Zeitung reported, to demonstrate against the controversial decision by US President Donald Trump.

Wien, Berlin, Göteborg, Athen, Amsterdam. In den vergangenen Tagen häuften sich Übergriffe auf jüdische Einrichtungen.

PS:  Get your free sample of of Brain Quest – A Fantastic Voyage through the Progressive Mind today! Safe when used as directed.

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German Of The Day: Kontrolle

That means control, as in the people who check to see if you bought your subway ticket for the U2 line in Berlin. Which apparently these two guys did not do.

U2

Nor did they have a Genehmigung (license) to make Straßenmusik (music on the street – or under it), either.

That’s the problem with this country, people. Nobody respects the rule of law.

The musicians took a special train Wednesday from the Olympic Stadium, near the western end of the U2 line, to the Deutsche Oper stop. Local radio station Radioeins, which gave out tickets for the ride, said about 120 people joined them on the train.

Modern Art For Modern Sensibilities

I know, modern isn’t modern anymore but being a martyr is about as modern as it gets these days.

Art

At least that’s the case at “The Other Eye of The Tiger” art exhibition in Berlin Kreuzberg.

This “martyr museum” places one of the Islamist terrorists responsible for killing 89 innocent people at the Bataclan in Paris next to people like Martin Luther King. One of the artists explains it thus to us dumb folks: One has to differentiate when considering the term martyr, he says. And it always depends on the context. Indeed it does. Always. Even I knew that. How do people get this confused?

Don’t try to understand art, people. Just experience it. Then after you’ve vomited it all out move on to the next exhibition.

Am Ende der Reihe steht Ismaël Omar Mustafaï, einer der Islamisten von Paris, die am 13.?November 2015 im Konzertsaal Bataclan in Paris 89 Menschen ermordeten.

Give Us More Of What We Just Voted Out Of Office

The city of Berlin isn’t the only thing that is dysfunctional in Germany these days.

Merkel

Maybe the Germans ought to consider fixing their parliamentarian system, too. I mean, the one thing that voters made perfectly clear just a few weeks back is that they do NOT want a continuation of the so-called GroKo (grand coalition government of CDU/CSU and SPD). But after Empress Merkel failed miserably during the Jamaica exploratory talks by going greener and green and letting the FDP get away, new talks are beginning to go for that very thing.

She doesn’t want to go with a minority CDU/CSU government, you see, because than her majesty’s government would have to explain everything to parliamentarians first before getting a majority to pass any legislation. She can explain things just fine, it’s just that fewer and fewer Germans agree with her explanations anymore. But a minority government is what she must go with, I find, until new elections are held. This, too, being something that nobody wants.

So, German voters got what they voted for, I guess: Nothing that they wanted.

Deputy SPD head Olaf Scholz said recently that a rebirth of the grand coalition would “have negative consequences for our democracy.” It would also mean that the right-wing populist Alternative for Germany (AfD) would be the strongest party in opposition. That means it would always have the privilege in parliament of delivering the first rebuttal to Merkel’s speeches.

Dysfunctional, Datfunctional, Main Thing Nothing Works

And costs everybody else in the country a whole lot of money. Berlin, my kind of town. My kind of town??

Berlin

Berlin, the capital of Europe’s most successful economy, is surprisingly badly governed. The new airport, the city’s biggest flagship project, missed its seventh opening date earlier this year and may not open until 2021, ten years after it was originally supposed to. The jobless rate is among the highest in the country. Schools are dismal. Courts and police are so overworked that hundreds of millions of euros in fines and taxes have not been collected; and the city failed to keep tabs on Anis Amri, the jihadist who killed 11 people with a lorry last Christmas, despite warnings about him three weeks earlier…

Astonishingly for a capital city, Berlin makes Germany poorer. Without it, Germany’s GDP per person would be 0.2% higher. By comparison, if Britain lost London, its GDP per person would be 11.1% lower; France without Paris would be 14.8% poorer…

“We have a deeply held suspicion of anything that smacks of efficiency and competence.”

German Of The Day: Parallelgesellschaften

That means parallel societies.

Nacla Kelek

And this migration research lady, Necla Kelek, a Muslim herself, believes that Familiennachzug or family reunification policies (bringing in the families of the refugee men who came to Germany alone) would contribute to forming these parallel societies – and put a swift end to all the integration efforts the “correct” Germans out there are all so concerned about. You know, that same old been there done that good intentions blowing up in your face stuff?

At least folks like her are allowed to have this opinion.

Familiennachzug fördert Parallelgesellschaften.

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

The Glühwein (mulled wine), the ornaments, the Christmas markets fortified with concrete blocks…

Xmas

Traditional Christmas markets are opening across Germany amid heightened security, almost a year after a terror attack on a Berlin Christmas market killed 12… The Berlin Christmas market, where a Tunisian attacker rammed a truck into visitors on Dec. 19, is to open Monday night with a candlelight ceremony.

Knapp ein Jahr nach dem islamistischen Anschlag ist der Weihnachtsmarkt an der Gedächtniskirche wieder offen. Betonbarrieren und Polizei sollen das Geschäft nicht trüben.

Who Will Be Brave Enough?

To just get it over with and close down Berlin’s new non-existent airport before it ever not opens, I mean.

BER

Nobody will be brave enoug, of course.. Not even after this latest (coming) delay. Can you still call them delays when you get to the ten-year mark?

The latest setback is reportedly due to problems with fire protection. Other errors over the years include badly installed cables, escalators that were too short and a roof that was too heavy.

Corruption is also a factor – last year one former airport employee was sentenced to prison for taking bribes and dozens of others have been fined.

Collateral damage includes construction companies, retail outlets and taxi firms forced into bankruptcy and one former Berlin mayor (SPD) forced out of his job.

Zu Tagesspiegel-Erkenntnissen, denen zufolge eine BER-Eröffnung vor 2021 durch die neuen Informationen zunehmend unwahrscheinlich wird, äußert sich die Flughafengesellschaft nicht direkt.

PS: Happy Thanksgiving!

German Of The Day: Weltspitze

That means world-class. And that’s what Berlin is. Or at the very least European-class. When it comes to crappy airports.

Airport

Just like at a survey taken a little earlier this year, of the top ten most horrible airports in all of ze Europe, Berlin Tegel and Berlin Schönefeld got on the short list again, although they only managed ranking ninth and tenth this time. Of course if they counted crappy non-existent airports, Berlin BER would have squeezed in there, too. Or do you think they might have a special consolation prize for that category?

Ein Nutzer schreibt sogar, der Flughafen Berlin Schönfeld sei “der schlechteste Flughafen überhaupt”. Alles sei sehr beengt und zu klein für die vielen Reisenden. „Die Wände, die Fenster und der ganze unsaubere Flughafen erwecken den Eindruck, dass man in einem Gefängnis ist, aus dem man fliehen will“.

Homeless Go Home!

Homeless go home? So you can be, I dunno, homeless there instead?

Homeless

There were roughly 2,000 homeless in Berlin twenty years ago. Ever since the Eastern European countries have allowed freedom to travel it plain to see that more and more people live in the city’s streets and parks. The railway station mission and Caritas organization estimate that up to 10,000 homeless are stranded in Berlin today.

Half of the rough sleepers in the German capital are Polish nationals, German news outlet Deutsche Welle has reported.

City authorities and charity organisations in Berlin expect Poland and other Central and Eastern European countries to pull their weight in helping their homeless compatriots by providing financial help and social workers, said Ortrud Wohlwend, from the Berlin-based Stadtmission organisation.

Foreign rough sleepers in Germany are not entitled to any help from the state. They do have the right to medical care as EU citizens, however, and may apply for unemployment benefit after five years of living in the country.

Vor zwanzig Jahren, heißt es, hätten rund 2000 Obdachlose in der Stadt gelebt. Seit der Reisefreiheit für osteuropäische Staaten ist aber mit bloßem Auge zu erkennen, dass in der Stadt immer mehr Menschen auf Straßen und in Parks leben. Bahnhofsmission und Caritas schätzen, heute seien bis zu zehntausend Obdachlose in Berlin gestrandet.