Operation Valkyrie 2.0?

‘We don’t have much time’ Angela Merkel’s youth wing plots to OUST her as popularity drops.

Merkel

Worried that the tiny little bit that is left of the CDU could soon evaporate altogether after Chancellor Merkel’s breathtakingly poor negotiation results in forming the latest grand coalition (the CDU has, in essence, become the SPD – the tail will soon be wagging the dog), a small group of fanatical CDU youth is preparing to implement an emergency continuity of CDU government operations plan as soon as they can figure out a way to bump off the old bag. Politically speaking, of course.

Insiders speculate that incriminating photos of a drugged Chancellor in bed with an even more drugged Martin Schulz ought to do the trick.  Outsiders speculate that there are not enough drugs out there strong enough to enable anybody to look at photos like that.

“Merkel has yielded critical levers in order to buy herself another four years in the country’s top office. Now these SPD politicos, most of whom are relatively unknown outside Berlin, will be the ones to shape the politics of Europe and Germany, the EU’s mightiest member, in the years to come.”

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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.

Going, Going…

Gone.

CO2

Here’s another one of those well-intentioned-do-gooder-mandates-from-above-meeting-reality kind of things. Why is it that reality is always popping up its ugly little head all the time, anyway?

The two parties likely to form the next coalition government in Germany have agreed to give up on the country’s climate targets for 2020. The goal was to achieve a 40% reduction in emissions from 1990 levels. In 2016, Germany’s had only reduced emissions by 28% versus the baseline (pdf), so the plan is now unrealistic.

There are two ways to interpret the announcement.

A charitable response would be that the news isn’t a surprise. Although Germany has made heavy investments in renewable energy, it has also been shuttering zero-carbon nuclear power plants since 2011. Giving up on the 2020 climate goals makes sense, especially if the coalition maintains the 2030 target of a 55% emissions reduction versus 1990 levels.

A harsher response would be that the news is devastating. “This damages the credibility of Germany but it also damages the whole international climate process,” Tobias Austrup, an energy expert at Greenpeace told the Financial Times. “Why should other countries stick to their climate goals if we don’t?”

One Out Of Two Ain’t Bad

One out of two is actually much worse than we thought.

Merkel

They may not be able to get her government to step down – she doesn’t have one anymore – but nearly half of Germans polled would now prefer it if Angela Merkel finally went away already and don’t let the door hit you on your way out.

I know. How’s this? She could drive off into the sunset in this hot old Mercedes that’s going to get auctioned off next month. Low mileage. The passenger seat was hardly ever used.

Die Schwierigkeiten bei der Regierungsbildung lassen den Rückhalt für Kanzlerin Angela Merkel in der Bevölkerung bröckeln. Laut einer Umfrage wollen nur 36 Prozent sie weitere vier Jahre im Amt sehen.

Merkelism

What is that, anyway? I’m still not so sure but I do know that it now belongs to the past.

Merkelism

Hey, the dinosaurs were still around a bit after becoming “extinct,” too.

This guy makes some good points here:

It could still be awhile before Angela Merkel cedes power, but it’s clear that we’ve entered the late phase of Merkelism. This form of governance has been dominant in Germany for the past 12 years. It places consensus, quiet and stability above all else…

Merkelism is in a state of crisis because two important prerequisites are no longer being filled. For one, it requires a societal climate in which broad consensus is possible. And, by its very nature, it also requires that Merkel be strong…

And the mechanics of how it worked were quite simple: Backbone is optional and political policies are fluid – and can even be borrowed from political opponents.re:

But the one piece of the puzzle that doesn’t fit in here is her self-inflicted refugee crisis wound. It makes absolutely no sense within this consensus context and remains the Merkel Mystery par excellence. At lest for me it does. And this is what has brought Merkelism down, of course. It’s the asteroid the caused her extinction.

For many years, a fundamental consensus held in Germany. Merkel’s concept of sedation worked by and large — and not even the greatest crisis of her time, the global financial crisis, could divide the country. But that peace finally came to an end due to the 2015 refugee crisis — a conflict that landed the right-wing populist Alternative for Germany (AfD) party in parliament, divided Merkel’s Christian Democrats, distanced the Free Democrats from the Greens and drove a wedge between the center-left Social Democrats and parts of the conservatives. That divide now runs right through the political center and a broad periphery has emerged on the right with which no consensus is possible.

PS: Get your free sample of Brain Quest – A Fantastic Voyage through the Progressive Mind today! For risks and side effects ask your doctor or pharmacist.

German Of The Day: Jamaika-Aus

That means, sadly, the collapse of the Jamaica talks to form a CDU/CSU/FDP/Green government. And is, coincidentally, Germany’s Word of the Year for 2017.

Jamaica

Sadly because the SPD has now been given the chance to come out of its we’re-absolutely-positively-never-ever-going-to-come-out-of-opposition pout after getting creamed during this year’s election. The SPD can do this kind of 180 degree turn stuff. Nobody cares. Just like nobody cares about who the chancellor is, apparently.

Denoting the ongoing failure to form a governing majority in German, Jamaica Out was one of several political neologisms chosen by the Society for German Language (GfdS) on Friday for its Word of the Year, which has been awarded since 2009.

PS: This kind of stuff gives me a hangover. I think I’ll drive over to the new Denny’s in Hanover and order me some pancakes or something (this article says Denny’s is where you go in US-Amerika for your hangover breakfast).

A Little Paralysis Never Hurt Anybody

If this is Germany’s acting government they sure are pretty lousy actors.

Merkel

On Thursday, the German chancellor spent two hours at the German president’s office in Bellevue Palace with the leader of the Social Democratic Party (SPD), Martin Schulz, and the leader of the Christian Social Union (CSU), Horst Seehofer. The president wants to prevent new elections and has urged the SPD and the CSU, the conservative alliance partner of Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU) to start afresh with the unpopular grand coalition, despite all past disappointments.

It will likely come to that, as the SPD is now ready for talks, even if it is still keeping its options open, including tolerating a CDU/CSU minority government. But it may take a while until a government is formed — some observers suspect the country could have to wait until March for a government to emerge from September’s election. After all, just a few weeks ago, the SPD was fiercely determined to reposition itself in the opposition.

But honestly, who really cares about any of this, anyway? As long as people here can still concentrate on the really dangerous governments out there chances are that nobody else will even notice that Germany doesn’t have one.

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.”

It’s Guys Like These Who Give Liberals A Good Name

These are your “classic” liberals, the pro-business Free Democratic Party (FDP). And more power to them.

Lindner

Lindner has very good reasons to not join a four-party coalition just after he managed to lead the FDP from the political wilderness back into parliament. He has sought to re-brand the FDP as a party with clear principles, delineating core demands that the FDP would pursue: investing in education, promoting digital transformation, lowering taxes, blocking an EU “transfer union” and controlling immigration. After a compelling campaign, the party re-entered parliament with 10.7 percent of the vote.

“It is better not to govern than to govern in the wrong way.”

Failed City-State

Take your pick it’s both.

Poor

Other than “poverty, unemployment, poor infrastructure, a floundering education system, debt, the refugee crisis and crime,” and a dozen or two other things nobody wants to address right now, Berlin is a great place to live.

Jeder fünfte Berliner ist einem Zeitungsbericht zufolge arm und verfügt monatlich höchstens über 841 Euro.