The German government inches towards collapse


ER Editor: The collapse of the Scholz government following the European elections ought to be on the cards. Here’s eugyppius with the latest. 


RT has it that yesterday, Scholz left Zelensky’s two-day ‘peace summit’ in Switzerland unexpectedly. See —

Scholz leaves Zelensky’s ‘peace conference’ earlier than planned – media

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz will skip the second day of Ukrainian leader Vladimir Zelensky’s Swiss ‘peace conference’, Der Spiegel reported early on Sunday. Scholz had to fly back to Berlin for an urgent meeting with his political party, the German weekly reported.

The chancellor is in for some “difficult talks on the budget” with his coalition partners, according to Der Spiegel. The 2025 federal budget must be approved by early July, but Scholz’s government is still embroiled in a heated dispute over the details, according to German media.

Germany still has a €1 billion ($1.07 billion) gap in its draft budget and Finance Minister Christian Lindner wants to cut spending – something that other ministries oppose, broadcaster ZDF reported on Sunday.

Germany’s industry-heavy economy has suffered over the past few years after the US and the EU placed numerous economic restrictions on Russia, leading to the bloc largely losing access to cheap Russian fossil fuels. That instigated an energy crisis that has gripped the country since the start of the Ukraine conflict.

A reminder that what was left over from the (probably vast) Covid budget was going to be put into climate policy, but the German courts nixed that. Hence the massive gap in the budget. As well, cutting off cheap Russian gas didn’t help. The RT report indicates the clown world we live in: more and more sanctions are expected of Scholz on Russia, which hurt the German economy even more. 


After months of masturbatory freaking out about “the right,” the German government inches towards collapse, as the social democrats realise they’re wildly unpopular and have neither money nor answers

The Süddeutsche Zeitung reports on growing discontent with Chancellor Olaf Scholz in the ranks of his own party.

As campaign tactics go, the “fight against the right” didn’t work as intended. The point of it, I guess, was to blackmail voters into supporting the social democrats, the Greens and the liberals, by warning them that the alternative was fascism. Nobody bought that, and all three government parties got hammered in the European elections. The latest poll pegs their combined support at 32%.

Now, the politicians of these parties are awakening with a pounding post-election hangover, and realising they’ve made a huge mistake. As the Süddeutsche Zeitung reports, “it is dawning on the SPD that they have underestimated the importance of migration and domestic security as political issues.”

The party leadership is … in turmoil. According to BILD, General Secretary Kevin Kühnert – who was responsible for the … failed … election campaign – has been criticising the coalition internally, while the party co-chairs Lars Klingbeil and Saskia Esken are trying to maintain unity. … Analysing the election and the success of the AfD has made it increasingly clear that the party have underestimated the extent to which the issues of migration and internal security influenced the voters’ mood …

Deputy parliamentary group leader Dirk Wiese calls for a tougher approach to limiting migration and deportations and refers to the Danish model with its tougher rules. Young Socialist leader Philipp Türmer sharply attacked Wiese on this account and said that anyone who wanted to sacrifice his own values should please follow Wiese’s lead. Wiese told the SZ: “The topic of migration must be discussed without blinders. In view of the election results, especially among young people, I can only advise the Young Socialist chairman to be more self-critical.”

The fact that ordinary Germans turn out to care more about mass migration and knife crime than they do about the threat posed by defunct 80 year-old political parties may well bring down the Scholz government. This is because a growing number of voices within the social democrats’ own ranks are beginning to wonder whether dissolving the coalition and holding new elections might not be their least bad option.

As Margaret Thatcher said in 1976, “Socialist governments … always run out of other people’s money,” (ER: Funny how ALL governments take other people’s money, including hers – the hideous poll tax for example, and many others) and the present socialist-headed government of Germany has been on life support since last November, when courts overturned their accounting wizardry and blew a 60 billion Euro hole in their budget. The liberal FDP, under Finance Minister Christian Lindner, have insisted on austerity and refused all tactics to raise the debt ceiling, leaving the SPD and the Greens without any means of wooing voters with more entitlements. The plan was apparently to tell them horror stories about fascism instead, but nobody believes that’s an option anymore.

Thus the rank-and-file are beginning to sharpen their knives:

… During the G7 summit in Italy … something is happening at home in the SPD … that is unprecedented in [Scholz’s] chancellorship: There is a growing realisation that it would be better to let the coalition collapse in the summer than to go into the 2025 federal elections under the burden of a tough austerity budget.

According to the SPD, sticking to the course of austerity would be a boost for the AfD and a “nail in their coffin.” … In parallel to the internal party conflicts, Scholz must find a solution for the 2025 federal budget with FDP leader … Lindner and Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck (Greens).

The FDP came out of the 2021 federal elections with more than 11% of the vote (ER: the FDP are in the ‘traffic light’ coalition government with Scholz’s SPD and the Greens). Since then, their association with the Scholz coalition has cost them more than half of their support, and they stand a serious chance of being voted out of the Bundestag entirely in 2025. Fiscal restraint is the only reason anybody votes for the FDP, and so for the sake of their own survival, they can’t afford to give ground here – even if it means bringing down their own government.

Pressure is growing almost daily within Scholz’s own party to confront Lindner with question of dissolving the coalition, should that be necessary. Lindner has so far refused to declare a new emergency or relax the debt ceiling … Now the SPD is criticising the Chancellor more openly than ever before …

The fact that Scholz initially failed to comment on the SPD’s historically poor result of 13.9 per cent in the European elections and, above all, that he was unable to present any ideas to his parliamentary faction on how the coalition should come together on the budget … has provoked criticism … Scholz has repeatedly said that the new budget is to be approved by the federal cabinet on 3 July. He has sided with Lindner, who envisages budget cuts in the double-digit billion range.

Parts of the SPD parliamentary group, however, are now declaring this a red line. “We need a plan B if it comes down to the wire on 3 July and Olaf Scholz is unable to agree to 30 billion in savings, but Christian Lindner won’t budge either,” Tim Klüssendorf, [an SPD] Bundestag representative, told the SZ. “Because there can be no such austerity budget with us.”

I have always thought that Scholz is most likely to be taken down by his own comradesProbably his chancellorship will only see 2025 if the FDP folds, in which case the liberals will be signing their own death warrant in turn.



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