German Of The Day: Kindergeld

That means child benefit payments. The “Kindergeld” benefits consist of monthly payments for each child in a family, starting at €192 per month per child for the first two children. Payments are then staggered depending on the number of children.

Kindergeld

The funny part is – hardy, har, har – these German Kindergeld payments are also going to parents of children who don’t even live in Germany but in other EU countries (€600 million per year). It’s another big scam, in other words. This has raised some concern here in Germany, believe it or not, and attempts have been made to restrict this.

So the really funny part is – hardy, har, har, har, har, har – is that the unelected officials over at the EU Parliament’s Sozialausschuss (Social Committee) have just ruled that Germany has to keep on making these payments anyway or else face disciplinary action from the EU. Wow. When Brussels says “social” (something for free), they mean it. You wanted Europe, Germany. Now you’ve got it. And you can bet there will be more good stuff like this to pay for in the future.

Deutschland, Österreich und Dänemark hatten gefordert, dass das Kindergeld für Ausländer an das Preisniveau des jeweiligen EU-Landes angepasst wird. Der Vorstoß ist im Sozialausschuss des EU-Parlaments gescheitert.

You Can Still Bring Your Dogs, Though

As we all know, adults need their peace and quiet. Especially if they are German adults.

Hotel

And German adults who need their peace and quiet can also be real innovators. That is why Germany is currently leading the field when it comes to the child-free hotel industry. No shirts, no shoes, no sixteen years of age? No service, junior.

“Your children are loud, annoying, disruptive, shrieky, poorly behaved and annoying as hell and ruin everyone else’s experience. Maybe it’s time breeders stop trying to force everyone else to bow down to their special snowflakes and realize that no one else loves your kid.”

Mit Ruhe für Erwachsene werben Hotels, die für ihre Gäste ein Mindestalter vorschreiben. Auch in Deutschland gibt es einige der “Ab 16” oder “Ab 18”-Hotels. Die Reaktionen von Gästen und Publikum schwanken zwischen Zustimmung und Hass.

Reproduction Regulators Recommend Rigorous Reform

The logic appears to go like this: Germans will only have children if they are paid by the state to do so.

Children

That this money must first be taken from them by the state to only later be given back to them if they behave properly (improperly?) is the first oddity here but not really the issue at the moment – or at least not the one German politicians want to talk about. The problem now is that Germans aren’t having enough children (only 12% of families with children here have 3 or more). They are not following the German reproduction regulation logic like they are supposed to and are refusing to have large families despite regular increases to the child benefit or Kindergeld payments given here.

In an attempt to counteract what is now the German one-child-per-family-if-they-have-any-children-at-all tradition, some reproduction regulators are suggesting that families now be given higher payments for each successive child born. I’m sure this will work just great. Well, I’m kind of sure it might work maybe, I mean.

Of course more money will first have to be taken in from the Germans before some of it can be given back to some of them again but that’s never bothered legislators here before so why break with a tradition like that now?

“Die wirtschaftliche Situation von Familien verbessert sich trotz der staatlichen Unterstützung im Durchschnitt nicht.”

Barbie Must Die

And the “Barbie Dreamhouse Experience” must be wiped from our collective memory. And said dreamhouse must be razed to the ground, too. This is because Barbie is a clear and present danger and a real threat. At least here in Berlin it is.

Barbie

And as far as I can tell, these are the German feministic reasons for this:

Everything is pink. Barbie and her Dreamhouse are a “pink-colored, sparkling world of beautiful illusion.”

There is an “endless” closet, cupcake baking kitchen, fashion runway and pop-star karaoke stage” inside (OK, I’m with them when it comes to this part).

The Dreamhouse gives “children the chance to taste the sweet nectar of life as a doll” and the protestors don’t like “pretty propaganda” like this.

They find it unfair that “not many women have the possibility of creating such a life for themselves.”

They think that Barbie is a role model that makes young girls want to “always look good, and to cook and clean.”

Barbie and her Dreamhouse “lead to eating disorders,” too.

And on and on and on. The head feminist, Michael Koschitzki, a member of the far-left Left Party’s youth organization, has spearheaded the protest movement against the Dreamhouse, printing thousands of flyers and calling on fellow feminists to gather outside for speeches and protest outside the temporary attraction on Thursday.

I’m speechless, almost. And I’m not making any of this stuff up, either. And these aren’t little girls cranking out this nonsense. These are real live feminist grownup human beings openly calling to picket a Barbie house, albeit a “Barbie Dreamhouse Experience” kind of house, but still. And the worst part of all this? The Barbie Dreamhouse Experience will be charging adults €15 just to get in.

“Barbie has again become a tool for some to advance their own agenda.”

Not With This Chancellor

Five minutes of excitement is better than no excitement at all.

A group of young conservative politicians, concerned about Germany’s catastrophic demographic development (or the lack of it), received less than a warm welcome by their very own Chancellor Angela Merkel herself today: They’re pushing for a tax on the childless, you see.

Although most politicians are normally crazy about raising taxes or introducing new ones, Frau Merkel made it quite clear that the buck (the euro?) stops here. Like practically everybody else in Germany, she doesn’t have any kids, either.

„Ich glaube, die Diskussion der Einteilung in Menschen mit Kindern und ohne Kinder ist hier nicht zielführend.“

What Do You Mean A Man Dressed As Santa Claus?

A man dressed as Santa Claus poses with his ‘helpers’ who are busy answering children’s letters in the Santa Claus post office in the Eastern German town of Himmelpfort (Heaven’s Gate) on November 10, 2011. Children can send their Christmas wish lists to Himmelpfort from around the world and receive a reply from Santa. In 2010, the post office here received 285.000 letters in 17 languages.

Merry Christmas and stuff like that.

Child Poverty

That’s what the Germans call their lack of children here. And with children comprising only 16.5 percent of the total population Germany now has the fewest number of children in all of zee Europe.

And the same report gives child poverty a whole new meaning here, too. It shows that one out of six of these rare creatures is threatened with real poverty.

I don’t know what any of this means. I suppose that Germans just prefer to spend more time with themselves and need to concentrate more on self-discovery and individual fulfillment. And to take themselves more seriously. Than they already are doing, I mean. And that is no laughing matter, believe me. So that makes this place certainly not the kind of place where you would want to raise your kids.

Vor zehn Jahren lag der Kinderanteil bei 18,8 Prozent, jetzt bei 16,5 Prozent, 2030 werden es voraussichtlich nur noch 15 Prozent sein.

Reason Number Three

From yesterday (why Germans don’t want any kids): They’re too loud.

Germany is so desperate to encourage people to have more children that the government is proposing a bill allowing citizens under six to laugh, shout and play at any volume.

Germany is a land of many rules, especially about noise. The government’s move comes after a series of lawsuits about children and noise, and a recent call from a senior citizens’ chapter of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives, who sought to ban kindergartens from residential areas because they are too loud.

Thank goodness. I’m sure this proposed bill will turn everything around for the better.

Now we know why Germans don’t want any kids

It’s because they don’t want any kids.

Sure, there are more specific “reasons,” but they are all vorgeschoben (phoney), whether the people giving them actually believe them or not. Like how in the latest survey two-thirds of childless couples asked actually want to have children but their financial situation, say, is too precarious or having kids would make their lives even more stressful than they already are, boo, hoo, blah, blah.

This all makes sense, sort of. As we all know, the human kind has never had children when the financial situation was precarious or the situation was stressful, right? Whatever.

No, they know perfectly well why they don’t want any children. 1) Once you have a kid it’s no longer about ME, MYSELF and I anymore and 2) Once you have a kid you would then actually be expected to take responsibility for it YOURSELF (even in Germany, well, for the most part). And taking responsibility for things just doesn’t cut the Kuchen around the country here these days.

79 Prozent finden den Alltag auch ohne Kinder bereits anstrengend genug,

A giant leap for Germankind?

Concerning the demographics problem in Germany, I mean. It’s official now: More and more Germans under 50 are actually “thinking” about having children.

Over 50 percent think they will most certainly have children one day, maybe. Some 26 percent think just that maybe part. Well what do you think of that? It’s the thought that counts.

Familienministerin Schröder sieht in dem Ergebnis einen bedeutenden Mentalitätswandel.