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Reaching agreement on a Coalition in Germany

by PeWi Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 04:25:25 PM EST

I don't really feel competent, but put something together as a starting point for others to comment on.

Especially the second youtube clip needs further watching...

Angela Merkel 55
Ronald Pofalla 50
Auswärtiges Amt und Vizekanzler
Guido Westerwelle 47
Wolfgang Schäuble 67
Rainer Brüderle 64
Arbeit und Soziales
Franz Josef Jung 60
Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg 37
Thomas de Maiziere 55
Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger 58
Philipp Rösler 36
Ursula von der Leyen 51
Bildung und Forschung
Annette Schavan 54
Verkehr und Bau
Peter Ramsauer 55
Nörbert Röttgen 44
Landwirtschaft und Verbraucher
Ilse Aigner 44
Dirk Niebel 46

Comments: Defence Minister Guttenberg, has the same role that Franz Josef Strauss once had. Maybe that is the kind of standing that he aspires as well? (although Strauss fought for Nuclear armament, and this government wants to get rid of all.) Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger, is the only one, that is positive (ish) she had left the previous government (under Kohl), when they pushed through the "Grosser Lauschangriff" Philip Rösler will be Germany's first Asian-born cabinet mister. Guido_Westerwelle: His English is renowned...


Reporter: How can you put a person in charge of Treasury that publicly proclaimed that he met a weapons trader only once, and that he had forgotten, that he received 100.000DM from him. How can you trust a person like that in a crisis?
Merkel: Because, this person has my confidence.
Reporter: But how can you say he can handle money, if he forgets that has 100.000DM in cash in his draw. (laughter)
Merkel: I have said everything, there is to say.
Reporter: But it is about the finances for 82 Million people, that is a very big amount.
Merkel: Next question please.

Read more at:

Süddeutsche Zeitung

Somehow the layout is a bit uppity - Sorry about that.
by PeWi on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 04:26:33 PM EST
I looked at it to see if I could help but I'm afraid it scared me away. Sorry! :)
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 04:57:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It is the table tag, that messes it up.... - but thanks all the same.
by PeWi on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 05:03:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You should (a) eliminate line breaks before posting, or (b) set to HTML formatting instead of Auto formatting. I'll correct it now.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 05:09:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Done. Advance notice: today I prepared a diary on all the new ministers, but it will be posted only tomorrow.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 05:11:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Great! Thanks! - And I look forward to that Diary!
by PeWi on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 06:03:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]

For the non-German-speakers, on the second YouTube clip. A Dutch journalist is asking a rather uncomfortable question about Wolfgang "Stasi 2.0" Schäuble, who moves from the interior to the finance ministry. It has to do with a seminal moment of recent CDU and German history, so I'll go into some detail.

Back in the nineties, Schäuble was the right-hand man and intended successor of then chanellor Helmut Kohl. Kohl maintained some black accounts to finance his campaigns, with funds from wealthy donours, including apparent kickbacks. One of these was Karlheinz Schreiber, a weapons lobbyist who paved the way for a deal in Saudi Arabia. Schäuble himself had a part in it as intermediary meeting Schreiber.

The whole affair blew open in 1999, a year after Kohl left power, to become known as the "CDU donations scandal". On the legal front, most of it was eventually successfully bogged down, but some of it is still on-going: Schreiber was handed over to German justice only recently. However, it brtought a sea change in power balance in the CDU.

  1. Kohl lost most of his influence on the party.
  2. Schäuble lost all chance to be his successor.
  3. By issuing contradictory statements on the deailings with Schreiber, Kohl and Schäuble turned from closest friends into bitter enemies.
  4. And the winner was someone no one calculated with: Angela Merkel. What worked for her in the scandal of contaminated nuclear waste containers a few years earlier now made her the (wo)man of the hour: public outrage. She was the first CDU leader to realise that stonewalling won't work this time, and she had no qualms breaking with her mentor Kohl and boss Schäuble at the same time. Leaving all CDU barons blinking in the headlight, she succeeded Schäuble as party head.

:: :: :: :: ::

Now, what did Merkel do when reminded of this, when asked: why can someone who can't remember well a meeting in which he got an envelope stuffed with 100,000 D-Mark be entrusted with everyone's finances?

She replies: "Because this person has my trust"...

The reporter asks again, "I think I said everything..."

Again, "Next question!

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 05:41:31 PM EST
"Because this person has my trust"

She means she trusts him to do exactly what she tells him?
by Trond Ove on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 03:55:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]

Even if you don't speak German, you should watch the video for a glipse of the real Merkel.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 05:11:13 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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