View Single Post
  #6  
Old 22.01.2016, 12:55
amogles's Avatar
amogles amogles is offline
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Zurich
Posts: 12,345
Groaned at 338 Times in 275 Posts
Thanked 26,173 Times in 10,978 Posts
amogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

Quote:
View Post
She is apparently beset by resistance from all sides. Even asylum seekers are now suing her government for taking too long to process their asylum requests. Yet she doesn't seem to address anything anybody airs. Does she intend to lead or do all the work herself?

In German democracy, how is it possible for a Chancellor to not listen to anybody? How is this different from despotism? Weren't there any lessons learned from WWII about ruling with absolute power?
Merkel seems to be trying to model herself in the footsteps of Helmut Kohl. One of Kohl's great strengths was being able to weather any storm or scandal simply by sitting there unflinchingly and ignoring or, if push came to shove, cycnically deflecting any criticism until things calmed down and went back to normal.

It was in the end his undoing but it kept him in power for 16 years, during which he outlasted crisis after crisis.

And this approach is not as absurd as it may sound. In times of change and uncertainty, people look to leaders who can keep a calm head, refuse to change course, but promise things will be OK in the end. Kohl was the master of that game.

Furthermore, as some of the German participants on this forum have shown, Germans have a great and unshaking respect for their leaders. Whereas in the anglosphere we are used to seeing leaders ridiculed, mocked and their effigies burnt at the stake, the very thought of a guy carrying a gallows with Merkel's name on it at a public demonstartion was sufficient to horrify the entire country, and at least temporarily, turn the tide against the likes of Pegida. A leader is a leader and you defend them whether they're right or wrong.

Of course this goodwill can very thin if you rely on it too much, and I think Merkel is getting pretty close to that point. But it lasts while it lasts.
The following 6 users would like to thank amogles for this useful post: