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  #61  
Old 25.01.2016, 11:23
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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A lot of people are washing their hands off of this. Even Merkel all of a sudden notes that a lot of the fake and real refugees harbor deep seated anti-Semitism, that "we" have to watch out for. Manuel Valls is talking about the destabilization taking place. Koeckner appears to be contradicting Merkel.

The fingerprints are being wiped clean from the scene of the crime. At the moment, only Merkel's hands appear to be on it. Even there, I expect her to divert the blame to any and all other things that does not point to her. It all just happened to happen.
Merkel will try and wash her hands of it all, but I think they will throw her under the bus nevertheless. People need some level of closure and you can really only move on and do something different if you draw a firm line behind the mistakes of the past.

The entire credibility of the CDU depends on whether Merkel's successor can pull that one off and assure people that things are under control and take some visible measures to clean things up, or whether it will be some weasel like Schäuble who will just make things worse. Typically in situations like this you have one chance to fix things, not two, so if the CDU fail to turn the situation around there goes their credibility.
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Old 25.01.2016, 13:32
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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- There has been quite a debate about the Greens and SPD refusing to share a podium with AfD in TV debates in the run up to various regional elections this year. That refusal sparked quite a caustic fallout and whereas some are digging their hole deeper, others have backpedalled.
I can see why:
http://www.welt.de/vermischtes/artic...-AfD-Frau.html

"Damit meine ich, dass das Gerücht war, dass sie nach Chile oder Südamerika geht." Wow!

Because they might have an honest debate. Looks like the whole AfD may be the Donald Trump of Germany. Salient points, but I suspect they don't have their act together either.
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  #63  
Old 25.01.2016, 14:01
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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"Damit meine ich, dass das Gerücht war, dass sie nach Chile oder Südamerika geht." Wow!
I think that was supposed to be her attempt at a joke. As in, deposed German dictators seem to be magically attarcted by South America. Erich Honnecker and his wife went there. Many Nazis went there. So to suggest Merkel belongs there is to imply she's in that category.
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Old 25.01.2016, 14:16
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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I think that was supposed to be her attempt at a joke. As in, deposed German dictators seem to be magically attarcted by South America. Erich Honnecker and his wife went there. Many Nazis went there. So to suggest Merkel belongs there is to imply she's in that category.
Interesting of course how the journalist pretends not to see the joke and is acting offended that somebody should imply that Merkel should have to end her days in such a place. Anybody who thinks such a thing will ultimately act on it, you know. Reminds me of the Merkel on the gallows thing a couple of months back. The German left and establishment really needs to get a thicker skin.
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Old 25.01.2016, 14:38
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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Never was a fan and always voted for anyone but her...

Her political career had two phases:

1. Before becoming chancellor
She was the "political child" of Helmut Kohl. After the reunification did he need to establish the CDU as the conservative force in Eastern Germany and therefore put quite some effort into finding some good people there. Anything Merkel did later on she learned during the Kohl years. On thing that was her specialty even back then was to not have any specialty: She never had any program or position in anything but always went with the majority. When majority opinions changed on a topic... so did she. Like a little flag in the wind... she clearly did not go into politics because she was convinced of a certain position and wanted to make sure this get implemented - but simply was hungry for power.

2. Chancellor.
First of all do I think she deserves respect to manage to become the leader of the conservatives. As a woman. From Eastern Germany. I am pretty sure that not too many on here know the German conservatives that well, but I am sure many other political parties work the same: Junior politicians meet during their college times and spend 1-2 decades to work on their politcial careers and push the jobs to their circle of friends. Within the CDU of her generation was this the "Andes-club", a group of men who went on a South America tour with the "young conservatives" during the early 80s... at a time Merkel was still wearing her socialist shirts...
During her years as a chancellor did she get a new nickname as she wasn't moving like a flag in the populist wind anymore: "Teflon". No matter what happened in Berlin, nothing sticks to Merkel. With her will to power did she never have a problem to get rid of any minister or decades long supporter whenever necessary. And for some reason did her voters time and again buy the story that it clearly was not her fault, but whoever just got kicked out.

I think around 1-2 years ago she somehow realized something: She has no legacy. None. Kohl had the reunification. Schroeder has reformed the social insurances against strong resistance even from his own party to meet the challenges of an aging society (at least a bit...) with his Hartz 4 packages and the "Agenda 2010" program. Merkel: A big fat nothing. Promised to lower the tax but did in fact raise it. Health care is in worse shape than before her, retirement system is in a worse shape, the army is just ridiculous and this list goes on. Clearly, the European Union in in a worse shape today than a decade ago - even before the refugees. Just think of the entire Greece story. It was her job to solve it together with the French, but out came very little. Internally was her non-action very good for businesses: The economy grew based on low wages and stagnating purchasing power of employees. It was good for companies but bad for the employees of those companies.

So I believe that a year and a half ago she decided that she does not want to go into the history books as a "lost decade". We had that situation before: Kohl did nothing for a decade in the 80s... well, that's not true: he more than doubled the German debt since he was unwilling to change the generous social insurances when it was necessary. Luckily for him came the reunification: Suddenly we clearly had to save money to "finance the build up" which was one complete lie. He did the things that were overdue for a decade and still will be remained as the chancellor that reunited the country, no matter how bad his policies were.

Angela was probably looking for her reunification story. Helping a million people in need makes you look good... and gives a great reason to push through policies you otherwise would try to avoid as they are unpopular. The problem is that these refugees are not Germans and that I don't think the population is falling for it this time. And that's dangerous: Since Merkel is doing left winged politics that's even too left for most of the SPD, let alone her own party does she suppress the conservative 50% of the German population. Many will still vote for the CDU because conservatives by definition hate change and just hope for some other candidates in the future. However, 10-20% might be so unhappy with her that they are willing to vote for newly popped up conservative movements. The problem is that those are not just radical in their opinions, but simply not up for the job of a power in a democratically elected parliament. They will make policy making much more difficult for the coming years and ultimately disappear again as soon as Merkel is gone and the CDU back on track. However, this will alienate even more people with politics.
Great analysis.

The result is disaster whenever a politician is looking to establish their "legacy".
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Old 25.01.2016, 14:41
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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A lot of people are washing their hands off of this. Even Merkel all of a sudden notes that a lot of the fake and real refugees harbor deep seated anti-Semitism, that "we" have to watch out for. Manuel Valls is talking about the destabilization taking place. Koeckner appears to be contradicting Merkel.

The fingerprints are being wiped clean from the scene of the crime. At the moment, only Merkel's hands appear to be on it. Even there, I expect her to divert the blame to any and all other things that does not point to her. It all just happened to happen.
And whatever corrective action is taken will be too little, too late. Demographers are pointing out that Germany will be a majority or near Muslim country in just a few generations.
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Old 25.01.2016, 14:42
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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Great analysis.

The result is disaster whenever a politician is looking to establish their "legacy".
There was a Belgian king who said that if you want a legacy you must either start a war or build a palace. Pity Merkel didn't take a leaf out of Erdogan's book.
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Old 25.01.2016, 14:47
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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And whatever corrective action is taken will be too little, too late. Demographers are pointing out that Germany will be a majority or near Muslim country in just a few generations.
Impact is even more immediate than that, in the mood of civil life, and the extreme right. I use to boast how civilized Germany is with so little police presence. I use to let my children wander around on their own. But now its even sensible to exercise a little bit of rational paranoia against marauding foreigners as well as neo-Nazis. I don't find that fun at all. Why, that is like.... I dunno.... Queens or Brooklyn?
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Old 25.01.2016, 14:50
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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And whatever corrective action is taken will be too little, too late. Demographers are pointing out that Germany will be a majority or near Muslim country in just a few generations.
This has been said about the U.K. many times over the decades and found to be false. What they did find is that when immigrant families assimilated, they tended to have smaller families, in line with the rest of the populace, so the growth was more proportional.
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Old 25.01.2016, 14:58
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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I never understood the "ding dong wicked witch is dead" thing. I always thought it was deeply rooted in the British to be terribly polite, and I found those comments to be terribly disrespectful myself.

That said, I appreciate that Thatcher was just like Marmite on steroids - absolute love or hate and nothing in between. We had 86 women in our offices at that time, and none of them hated Maggie (at least not openly).

So I guess that makes thousands of British women who are Maggie haters. And at least 88 pros. Oh well. I'm always siding with the underdog.
And most of the people yelling "Ding-dong, the witch is dead", weren't even alive when Thatcher was in power (and if they were, they were toddlers).
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Old 25.01.2016, 15:04
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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There just aren't enough hours in the day to recount all the reasons I hated her, and I do realise that hate is a very strong word, but I did.

This isn't a matter of where you came from in the U.K., though it's a very strong factor, it's also a case of which part of a particular town or city you lived in, family background, impact upon your family, what you witnessed first hand, etc...

My brother (a now retired barrister) left uni with his law degree and couldn't get any work for 18mths. He even had his name down for a job on the bins, but the waiting list was over 2yrs long.

I was out of work for 2 solid years, which is completely against my nature and the work ethic I was raised with. I sold all my books, records, etc, arranged interviews in London, Brighton, etc and went home with nothing. My only way out was to go self-employed when I turned 21.

I saw the miners strikes first hand. My cousin left the police because of the brutality he witnessed and was ordered to use against the miners. I walked through the streets of Toxteth the day after the riots. I knew families who had three generations made redundant on the same day, and that is still happening today. My aunt was a district nurse and visited quite a few familes who literally had no money for food. She used to take baby food and baby clothes to one young woman she knew who was recently widowed with 3 kids, and the baby's crib was a drawer.

'Boys From The Black Stuff' was real in the town I lived in and in all the neighbouring towns. If you ever care to learn the other side of what Thatcher did to my country, I strongly suggest you watch that series.

Edit: I'd be interested to know which part of the country you're from? No need to be exact.
What you and your people had to go through was terrible. Sadly, such disruption was also inevitable. To paraphrase an economist: When something can't go on forever, it won't. Such is the situation we live in now (although less dramatic and concentrated in one point in time), where the generation just before us has been able to cash in on generous pensions and the appreciation of their homes. None of that cash and equity will be waiting for us upon our retirements (at least in the US and most of the West - maybe the UK will be different somehow).
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Old 25.01.2016, 15:10
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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And whatever corrective action is taken will be too little, too late. Demographers are pointing out that Germany will be a majority or near Muslim country in just a few generations.
There's little that can be done about that anyway.
The demographic projections (for the next 30 years) point to a massive reduction in population and a quasi-inversion of the age-pyramid (lot's of old people, some middle-aged and very few young people).
This development is irreversible. Even if the current (Christian) population started to reproduce like crazy (and I mean Mormon-type crazy), the damage is already done.

Unfortunately, the German social security system is a bit of a Ponzi-Scheme and requires a constant influx of new contributors to pay out the current recipients.
How one working employee is supposed to pay for one retired person (as that is the current projection for 2040-ish) is anybody's guess.

Personally, I give most Syrian refugees the benefit of the doubt - most of the problems come from crooks from the Maghreb (we already had those in Switzerland about two or three years ago). Their home countries aren't too keen on taking them back - go figure.

BTW: states from the Near and Middle East have an age pyramid that is the exact opposite of what we have in Germany (or Europe).
Historians have shown that the dynamic of population growth directly correlates with the dynamic of economic growth a decade or two down the line.
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  #73  
Old 25.01.2016, 15:22
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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What you and your people had to go through was terrible. Sadly, such disruption was also inevitable. To paraphrase an economist: When something can't go on forever, it won't. Such is the situation we live in now (although less dramatic and concentrated in one point in time), where the generation just before us has been able to cash in on generous pensions and the appreciation of their homes. None of that cash and equity will be waiting for us upon our retirements (at least in the US and most of the West - maybe the UK will be different somehow).
In the UK I think the appreciation of real estate is going to continue simply because with net positive immigration there are more people competing for limited real estate.

This is tough on young people and first time buyers but benefits those who are on the ladder. This is the strange thing about the UK. Jobs can go out of the window and lots of bad things happen to the economy but people are still getting richer because their houses are appreciating and people are getting rich by doing nothing. At some point of course too many people will be priced out of the market and something will have to give, but we're not there yet and probably won't be for at least another generation.

Germany on the other hand hasn't seen much real estate appreciation. People's homes aren't part of their pension plans in the way they are in the UK. I guess Merkel thought it was time to do something about that.
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Old 25.01.2016, 15:27
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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Historians have shown that the dynamic of population growth directly correlates with the dynamic of economic growth a decade or two down the line.
This may be outdated thinking. Historians look at Henry Ford and Northern Indiana and see men in cloth caps bolting tin lizzies together for 14 hours a day.

That same site today, three or four generations later is deepest rust belt, while the money is being made some other place by different people. Today the ability to create wealth doesn't correlate as directly with the number of people you employ. Politicians missed the signs and failed to push ahead with automation as hard as they could. They're trying to fix the 21st century's problems with the 19th century's solutions.
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Old 25.01.2016, 15:30
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This may be outdated thinking.
The conversation is shifting, and the deck is being reshuffled. It needs to happen from time to time.
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Old 25.01.2016, 15:52
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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This was exactly me, a Humanities/Liberal Arts major. I use to consider myself left wing until I started to realize what it culminates into.
Me too. Went the whole hog, marches and all.

So I completely understand the leftist way of thinking. In fact when I look at the left today I see myself as I was all those years ago.

But to quote Clemenceau, if a man isn't a socialist when he's 20, he has no heart. If he's still a socialist when he's 40, he has no brain.
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Old 25.01.2016, 15:57
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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This has been said about the U.K. many times over the decades and found to be false. What they did find is that when immigrant families assimilated, they tended to have smaller families, in line with the rest of the populace, so the growth was more proportional.
You make a good point about predictions (especially regarding demographics). However, in this case the numbers are more concrete than the UK scenarios. For instance:

"Uwe Brandl, the President of the Bavarian Association of Municipalities, has been running the numbers:

Germany's Muslim population is set to nearly quadruple to an astonishing 20 million within the next five years, according to a demographic forecast by Bavarian lawmakers.

The German government expects to receive 1.5 million asylum seekers in 2015, and possibly even more in 2016. After factoring in family reunifications -- based on the assumption that individuals whose asylum applications are approved will subsequently bring an average of four additional family members to Germany -- that number will swell exponentially. This is in addition to the 5.8 million Muslims already living in Germany.

So from 5.8 million out of a population of 81 million, Muslims will now number 20 million out of a population of some 95 million.

Germans have a fertility rate of 1.3 children per couple. European Muslims are estimated to have approximately 3.5. Let's keep the math simple with nice round numbers:

Total population: 100 million.
Native Germans: 80 million.
Muslims: 20 million.

The 80 million Germans will have 52 million children and 34 million grandchildren. The 20 million Muslims will have 35 million children and 61 million grandchildren. So in two generations there will be twice as many Muslims as Germans. And that's without a single new immigrant after December 2016[...]

Herr Brandl calls this "a demographic shift of epic proportions, one that will change the face of Germany forever"."

Cite: http://www.steynonline.com/7272/mani...-new-wild-west

and...

"The German Chancellor cut to the chase and imported in twelve months 1.1 million Muslim "refugees". That doesn't sound an awful lot out of 80 million Germans, but, in fact, the 1.1 million Muslim are overwhelmingly (80 per cent plus) fit, virile, young men. Germany has fewer than ten million people in the same population cohort, among whom Muslims are already over-represented: the median age of Germans as a whole is 46, the median age of German Muslims is 34. But let's keep the numbers simple, and assume that of those ten million young Germans half of them are ethnic German males. Frau Merkel is still planning to bring in another million "refugees" this year. So by the end of 2016 she will have imported a population equivalent to 40 per cent of Germany's existing young male cohort. The future is here now: It's not about "predictions"." [My emphasis added.]

Cite: http://www.steynonline.com/7428/it-s...ography-stupid
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Old 25.01.2016, 16:01
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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This may be outdated thinking. Historians look at Henry Ford and Northern Indiana and see men in cloth caps bolting tin lizzies together for 14 hours a day.

That same site today, three or four generations later is deepest rust belt, while the money is being made some other place by different people. Today the ability to create wealth doesn't correlate as directly with the number of people you employ. Politicians missed the signs and failed to push ahead with automation as hard as they could. They're trying to fix the 21st century's problems with the 19th century's solutions.
Good points all. Which means that blue collar workers are completely screwed (unless they live in Switzerland?).
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Old 25.01.2016, 16:13
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There's little that can be done about that anyway.
The demographic projections (for the next 30 years) point to a massive reduction in population and a quasi-inversion of the age-pyramid (lot's of old people, some middle-aged and very few young people).
This development is irreversible. Even if the current (Christian) population started to reproduce like crazy (and I mean Mormon-type crazy), the damage is already done.

Note that this is not happening in Eastern Europe nor Russia. So what makes it inevitable in Germany?

I would say it is the wealth, but that is finite. Furthermore, the wealth is generated through intellect, and less on its natural resources. What happens when the generation of that wealth stops?

Also, is the assumption here that Germans will be wearing hijabs and issuing the Adhan from the Alexanderlatz Fernsehturm? I somehow doubt you can get a people to change cultures so easily. What is more likely to happen is a Germanicized expression of other cultures. Who knows, they may come out with an expression of Islam that is peaceful, acceptible and serve as a model practice for the rest of the world.

Although the germans sure behave like they really want to do themselves in. Who knows, they might actually succeed in obliterating themselves.
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Old 25.01.2016, 16:30
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Re: Do you believe in Merkel?

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Herr Brandl calls this "a demographic shift of epic proportions, one that will change the face of Germany forever"."

Cite: http://www.steynonline.com/7272/mani...-new-wild-west
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