Of Course She’s Inadequate

If she were adequate they wouldn’t have nominated her for the job in the first place.

Inadequate

That’s how the EU works.

EU crisis: Merkel’s coalition ally slams Ursula von der Leyen for EU chief ‘inadequate!’ – The European Parliament is due to vote next Tuesday on whether Ms von der Leyen, Germany’s defence minister and a conservative ally of Chancellor Angela Merkel, should succeed Jean-Claude Juncker as head of the EU. Ms Von der Leyen’s nomination by EU leaders has infuriated the Social Democrats (SPD), Mrs Merkel’s coalition partners, who have accused leaders of ignoring the lead candidates from the main parliamentary blocs in their horse-trading over top posts…

The SPD said of her efforts to fix gaps in military readiness, Ms von der Leyen had failed to make significant improvements and that the Bundeswehr was still “in a shabby state”.

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German Of The Day: Hinterzimmer

That means backroom.

Backroom

You know, like backroom deals? Like the way EU technocrats decide who runs the show despite what the electorate says? Why even hold European elections in the first place?

Von der Leyen nomination: Germans criticise ‘backroom deal’ – “What was the point of all that?” German critics are asking, after the nomination of Ursula von der Leyen, Germany’s defence minister, for the top EU job of Commission president.

There were TV debates. There were election rallies. Germany’s streets were plastered with posters showing the faces of candidates for the EU’s top jobs.

But Mrs von der Leyen’s face did not appear on any posters. Instead her nomination was suddenly announced after weeks of difficult, behind-the-scenes wrangling between EU leaders.

This is European, I mean EU democracy in action, people.

AKK Taling CaCaCa

Mini-MErkel alarm! Could this be the end of her beginning or the beginning of her end?

AKK

One can only hope for the later.

Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer (AKK), leader of Germany’s centre-right CDU, faced a massive backlash on Tuesday after calling for tighter rules on politicking on the internet, with critics accusing her of advocating online censorship.

Her comments came after European elections in which the CDU and its main left-of-centre rival, the Social Democrats, slumped to their worst results in a national election since the second world war, as voters defected in their droves to the Greens.

“Freedom of expression is a precious commodity in a democracy. What we need to talk about are rules that would apply during election campaigns.”

The Natives Are Getting Restless

Nice spin, though: Europeans showed belief in the EU project, experts claimed Monday, despite long-dominant centrist parties losing ground to euroskeptic and nationalist opponents in the EU elections.

So, by voting for euroskeptic and nationalist parties you are actually voting for the EU? Uh, OK.

Are we having fake news yet?

“I think the voter turnout shows that people really still care about the EU and what the European Union is doing. It shows a trend that, rather than weakening, it’s going to strengthen.”

Oh Great And Powerful Wahl-O-Mat…

Tell me who to vote for. But computer says no!

Wahl

It’s odd. Germans seem to really love this goofy computer program that tells them how to vote. Now they’re upset because a German court has shut it down (temporarily?) because smaller parties feel they are at a great disadvantage here (which they are anyway because they are smaller parties). The “Vote-O-Mat” only allows the user to select up to eight parties for comparison purposes and this hurts the really tiny and the really wacko ones.

And this before the big European elections next week! OMG who’s going to tell me who to vote for now?

Das Gericht begründete den Schritt damit, dass man auf der Seite seine politischen Auffassungen nur mit dem Programm von bis zu acht Parteien abgleichen könne. Das sei eine Benachteiligung kleinerer und unbekannterer Parteien.

Germans Are Just Crazy About The EU

Or at least that’s the impression you get consuming the media reports here.

Manfred

Manfred

In reality, however, nobody really knows what it is or how it works, much less who to vote for. Not even when a German is running for European Commission president in the upcoming election.

Only around one in four Germans (26 percent) knows who Manfred Weber is, just a month ahead of a European election he hopes will help propel him to being the next European Commission president.

But Weber, the lead candidate for the European People’s Party (EPP), is not alone in having a relatively low profile on the domestic political scene. According to a YouGov poll commissioned by dpa, 45 percent of Germans do not know any of the nine leading party candidates for the European Parliament election.

I Can’t Stand It

I know you planned it!

CDU

Conspiracy theory of the week: The CDU sabotaged Friedrich Merz’s chances for winning the election for party chairman against Mini-Merkel on Friday by turning down his microphone during his speech. I believe it. Of course, I also believe that interdimensional shapeshifting lizards are calling all the shots here on Planet Earth from a secret bunker complex somewhere under the polar ice cap, thus causing the ice there to melt. But still.

Wirre Gerüchte: Falsches Spiel mit Merz? CDU soll sein Mikro absichtlich gedimmt haben.

“Trump Still Clicks”

CNN title: Trump’s been president for two years. Germans still can’t look away. Nor will they look away. Because they can’t.

Trump

Why should this surprise anyone? This a perfectly normal everady pathological German obsession, no different than their irrational infatuation with Obama before Trump and their Verteufelung (demonization) of Bush before him (and on and on it goes). Germans are hysterical in these matters. It’s a collective psychological issue, an obsession with US-Amerika in the end. What is more, this collective hysteria is very profitable for the brain police in German media who milk it daily.

I’ve always liked this guy’s take on it (a Spiegel man himself): “German schadenfreude knows no bounds, particularly when it comes to the United States. The country loves to feel superior to a superpower like America. Yet Germany also harbors a childish infatuation with Obama — one which has little political grounding. The reasons are psychological. …The criticism of America has always been a bit infantile. One is familiar with the theory from psychoanalysis, when people talk about transference, or when suppressed feelings or emotions are overcome by projecting them onto others. It may work for a while, improving one’s feeling of self-worth by devaluing an imagined adversary. But it always falls short. Which is why the ritual must be constantly carried out anew.” – Jan Fleischhauer

Over two floors of Der Spiegel’s glasshouse building, walls bearing seven decades of the magazine’s covers serve as a colorful chronology of modern history. On one wall are cartoons of an angry yellow-haired man that are so provocative they’re impossible to miss.

“Trump still clicks, people are interested in those stories — and the same applies to our magazine stories and covers.”

Godot Has Just Left The Building

A snap election in Hesse this weekend? Yeah, maybe. But didn’t we just have one in Bavaria?

Godot

The real German problem is more subtle… She is broken, Señor. Germany, I mean. And ain’t nobody gonna fix her until she gets, like, really broken.

Waiting for Germany today is like waiting for Godot. Nothing will get fixed: neither the eurozone, nor climate, nor migration. Comfy but angst-ridden, Germans will keep having fake domestic crises, while the rest of Europe tries to keep a lid on real ones. Eventually, those real ones will erupt. And then a continent could accidentally get lost. At that point, Germans will finally get a proper crisis. Maybe it’s just as well that they kept rehearsing now.

Vor dem Knall – In Hessen findet am Sonntag nicht irgendeine Landtagswahl statt. Es wird ein politisches Erdbeben geben, die Auswirkungen wird vor allem Berlin spüren. Die Frage ist nur noch, ob es zuerst die SPD oder die CDU erreicht. Die Große Koalition steht vor dem Ende, das Land vor einer Zeitenwende

The Two-Party Is Over?

And it couldn’t have happened to a nicer bunch of folks. Or Volk, if you prefer.

SPD

The German Social Democrats’ (SPD) existential crisis can no longer be treated as a typical party crisis. The party captured a mere 9.7% of the vote in regional elections in Bavaria this month, and it is trailing both the populist Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) and the Greens in national opinion polls. With another important regional election fast approaching in Hesse, polls indicate that the SPD will lose still more support, albeit not as dramatically as in Bavaria…

Most likely, the fall of the CDU/CSU-SPD duopoly will undermine German hegemony in Europe, even if no other country can replace Germany in that role. At the same time, the weakening of the SPD will diminish the socialist faction in the European Parliament, where a similar eclipse of two-party rule could be in the offing. Yet without the twin pillars of the European People’s Party and the Party of European Socialists, the parliament will be incapable of making even insignificant decisions. As Germany and the SPD go, so goes Europe.