399,000 Euros

That’s what one regional director among the “public-sector broadcasters” (state TV) earns here annually – that guy down there. There a dozen or two of these directors out there, by the way.

Intendant

Why that’s more than the President of the United States makes (not that our current President particularly cares about what he gets paid).

Is TV that good here in Germany, you ask? Why yes, it is. Just ask that regional director. It is in fact so good that all Germans are permitted to finance it with a so-called Abgabe, or contribution. Contribution sounds better than tax. Contribution contributes more to the warm and fuzzy feeling everybody has here about state-run TV. And it also contributes to that guy’s ridiculous salary, too. But quality has its price. And as viewers are told time and time and time again, what they are watching is Quality pur (pure).

Wenn man immer geringere Bezahlung fordere, könnten sich am Ende nur noch Milliardäre leisten, eine öffentlich-rechtliche Anstalt zu leiten.

 

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Speaking Of German Efficiency…

Sure, border control authorities losing 48 of the 51 illegal migrants (undocumented migrants?) they placed in their detention facilty is certainly a tough act to follow but I live in a place called BLN (that’s how some folks refer to Berlin here) so let’s give it a try.

Polizei

In Berlin they like to take things a level higher, you see. Take the police, for instance. Please. Berlin has the only big city police department where the robbers break in and nobody seems to care. Thieves broke in to Berlin’s police headquarters near the Airlift Memorial in Tempelhof on Monday night and stole some militaria. The cops tried to keep a lid on it, of course, but the Lügenpresse got their hands on the story someehow.

I don’t care much about this robbery, either, I must say. House break-ins have risen dramatically in Germany these past years but the police have increased their solve rate to around two percent of the cases. So, like, what on earth is there to worry about?

Getting back to German Efficiency; the thieves are the really efficent ones here. But that’s only because they are rarely German.

“Wenn jemand hier einen Anschlag plant, rennt er durch, und keiner der dort Angestellten wäre fähig, es zu verhindern.”

The Case Of The Missing Migrants

It’s not all that mysterious, really. And certainly nothing new.

Migrants

After finding 51 migrants in a Turkish truck at the Polish border on Saturday, 48 of those 51 detained have now disappeared without a trace from the initial reception facility they had been placed in. That’s German efficiency for you, I guess. No wonder this migrant smuggling business is booming here these days. It’s a piece of cake.

Authorities said that the migrants were traveling from Iraq, adding that none of them had passports or other papers.

In einem türkischen Lkw brachten Schleuser 50 Flüchtlinge nach Brandenburg. Jetzt sind 48 von ihnen aus einer Erstaufnahme-Einrichtung verschwunden.

 

German Of The Day: Nichtwähler

That means non-voters.

Non-voter

And who do German non-voters vote for? Die Partei, of course.

Twelve straight years of Angela Merkel have left politics feeling a little dry for young people in Germany. But now a satirical party is experiencing a surge in popularity after it was set up as a joke at the expense of the old system…

In the last few months the party has seen its membership swell to reach more than 25,000, just shy of the 26,000 members of the rising and much-publicised extreme-right party Alternative fur Deutschland (AfD), which is expected to enter parliament for the first time this year.

Nichtwähler wählen: Die Partei.

First, Split Your Vote

Then overhang it on a balance seat. That’s how Germans vote, folks. And they smirk at our electoral college? Of course we do, too when we lose. But still. No wonder they can’t vote Merkel out of office. Es ist einfach kompliziert. It’s simply complicated.

Voting

How are seats calculated in the Bundestag?

The system starts to get complicated when Germans split their votes, meaning they vote for a candidate from one party in the first vote and for a different political party in their second vote. That can throw off the balance of seats in parliament so that one party is more strongly represented than they should be based on the results of the proportionate second votes.

So Germans created “overhang” and “balance seats.” Those are extra seats in the Bundestag that ensure every candidate who was directly elected gets a seat while political parties are still proportionally represented based on the number of votes they received. A German state’s population is taken into consideration when votes are converted into seats.

After Germany’s 2013 parliamentary elections, there were 631 seats in the Bundestag, including 33 overhang and balance seats.

 

German Of The Day: Certainly Not Here

Not in this English newspaper.

Sun

It’s kind of German, I guess. But it’s certainly not very kind to the German language.

Es ist Zeit für die Erwachsenen, Angela Merkel und Emmanuel Macron, die Verhandlungsführer durch den Hals zu ergreifen und Sie zu stoppen verschwenden Zeit mit Punkt-Scoring. Das ist zu wichtig.

A pro-Brexit editorial written in German has a problem: It’s literally gibberish.

Germans Higher Than You Thought They Were

I mean Germany is. Higher.

Index

No. not that kind of high. Actually, yes. Precisely that kind of high. But Germany is also highest when it comes to something called the Quality of Nationality Index.

Consistently securing the top spot for the last six years, Germany scored 82.7% out of a possible 100% on the index – the first of its kind to objectively rank the value of every nationality of the world in terms of legal status in which to develop your talents and business. The global mean in 2016 was 39.32%, with Afghanistan sitting at the bottom of the index with a score of 14.6%…

The US, meanwhile, ranked only 29th on the QNI with a score of 68.8% — mainly due to its relatively low Settlement Freedom compared to nationalities of the EU Member States, and its weak showing on the Peace and Stability element of the index.

So, getting back to that other kind of high… Now I know why everybody wants to come here.

The Case Of The Cryptic Cross

Somebody call Sherlock Holmes. Pronto like.

Cross

Berlin police and media are clearly puzzled by this unsolvable criminal case. An Afghan wearing a Christian cross was viciously attacked by two young men at S-Bahn station Neukölln after asking him “Why did you become a Christian?”

“We just can’t figure it out,” one investigating officer said later at the scene of the crime. “Why would Germans do such a thing? Sure, Berliners aren’t exactly religious but to just attack some guy because he’s a Christian in a Christian country like this? At least nominally a Christian country, I mean? Too strange.”

“Any ideas who could have done this awful thing?” asked his Partner, Barney. “We’ve asked all the shop owners around here but no one saw a thing. I think we’ll head a few steps down the street to that radical Al-Nur Mosque over there and see if any of those folks know anything. They’re religious at least.”

Laut Experten richtet sich die Aggression von Tätern oft gegen Zuwanderer aus muslimischen Ländern, die sich für den christlichen Glauben entscheiden.

German Of The Day: PARTEI

PARTEI officially stands for “Partei für Arbeit, Rechtsstaat, Tierschutz, Elitenförderung und basisdemokratische Initiative,” or “Work, Rule of Law, Animal Protection, Elite Promotion, and grass-roots democratic Initiative.”

Partei

Finally, a political party for the rest of us. I mean, you.

“If it doesn’t matter to you who sits in the Bundestag, wouldn’t it be great to be represented by someone who could care less that he does sit there?”

What I like about a satirical party like the Party is that its meaninglessness, as compared to the meaninglessness of a number of serious political parties here, has a meaning.

As for its campaign goals, Die Partei’s election manifesto is replete with meaningless political platitudes pushed to the edge of absurdity: “Die Partei supports the implementation of all-encompassing, universal, total justice, at least twice as much justice as the SPD (Social Democratic Party). Any complaints about supposed injustices will be suppressed with the utmost force.”

„Wenn es dir egal ist, wer im Bundestag sitzt, wäre es dann nicht schön von jemandem vertreten zu werden, dem es egal ist, dass er im Bundestag sitzt?“

The Anti-War Is Over (If You Want It)

I certainly want it. Remember these guys? They travelled here in a DeLorean from the 1980s. A DeLorean station wagen or something.

War

They materialized again in front of Ramstein Air Base for an anti-war protest rally protest. US-Amerikan warmongering is warmongering again or something. I honestly had no idea. Hey, it’s election time in Germany again but I’m not sure which party is supposed to be getting the votes here. The Marxist-John-Lennonist-68-Internatinal-Front?

Zuletzt hatte die bundesweite Kampagne die Atomkrieg-Drohungen von US-Präsident Donald Trump gegen Nordkorea scharf kritisiert. Sie forderte die Bundesregierung auf, “öffentlich den USA jede Unterstützung für ihre Kriegsvorbereitung zu verweigern”.