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Well, I do believe Schroeder was vactioning in Italy and being insulted by Berlusconi.

Belusconi may be a crook, but he's my kind of crook.

Is he auditioning for moveon.org?

Schroeder is just a pathetic loser. Let him govern a country with more than one time zone and see how that works out. On second thought, I hope his new job does well for him.

Hasn't he done enough to embarass himself (cf his pathetic post-election lash-out "victory is ours") ?

btw: does anybody know if the rumours about him joning Merryl-Lynch are confirmed ? I heard he has denied them instantly, even though his wife "would mind living in New York" ?

Well Germans tend to like large numbers of deaths. The US just failed to live up to German expectations both in Iraq and with Katrina. Not enough Americans died. So it is only appropriate for Gerhard, Jacko and crew to continue to beat the drums. In fact, they should beat them even louder.

Now the french and their social model, mirrored across the Rhine, have it right. They kill people in large numbers. Large numbers here being a relative term of course. Besides the death of all these old frenchmen helped the welfare state by reducing the social costs of keeping them alive.

As for the economic model, it is obvious the US and UK have it all wrong. They should in fact be following the example of both france and Germany and the leadership provided by Gerhard and Jacko. Just look at what the spd managed to accomplished with their partners in 7 years of being in office. Any sane German should realize they are much better off today than they were in 1998.

Hopefully both Germany and france will follow their own path when it comes to their economies. This will insure their model will last for another 1000 years.

A strong Germany is also a relative term and of course in comparison to what? Gerhard did not define that and no one asked.

For a moment lets go back to one of Gerhard’s finest moments.

Do any of you remember the famous the Lisbon Strategy? In March 2000, the EU agreed to a ten-year strategy to make the EU the world’s most dynamic and competitive economy. Key to that strategy was the reinforcement of science.

This was part of the future strong Germany Gerhard was going to create. Increased investment in education, R&D, etc world leadership in medical drugs and in the biotech area.

Now for the accomplishments.

So bad is the environment in the EU for research-based companies that Novartis, the healthcare company, recently moved its research facilities to the United States and GlaxoSmithKline now has its research base in Philadelphia. From 1990 to 2001 the number of research employees in the German drug industry fell by 36 per cent and contiues to decline today. Scientists are talking with their feet: the EU Commission’s survey shows that 400,000 European science and technology graduates have immigrated to the US.

Yes the Germans were fools not to send Gerhard and his spd back to Berlin for another 4 years. Now they will find the price for this mistake will be costly to them. I am sure in another 4 years he could have effectively undermined NATO to the extent it would have been disbanded. This is very much a lose lose situation.

@ Toby

I'm sure that Herr Schröder can find arrangements more suitable to his palate, far away from the dreaded Amis in New York.


'"I do not want to name any catastrophes where you can see what happens if organised state action is absent. I could name countries, but the position I still hold forbids it, but everyone knows I mean America," he said to loud applause.'

What a jackass.

Compare these comments by Al Gore to Schroeder's:

"I have absolutely no plans and no expectations of ever being a candidate again," Gore told reporters after giving a speech at an economic forum in Sweden. "We would not have invaded a country that didn't attack us," he said, referring to Iraq. "We would not have taken money from the working families and given it to the most wealthy families." "We would not be trying to control and intimidate the news media. We would not be routinely torturing people," Gore said. "We would be a different country."

Maybe, Schroeder could work for Gore's Current TV! Two more media-genic personalities never graced the public sphere!

Is typekey fucked up again?

Ok. That's better.

from your link:
>>Mr Putin, who last year overrode his country's bureaucracy to present Mr Schröder and his wife Doris with a child from an orphanage in St Petersburg, has long been close to the German politician.

Putin gave Schroeder a child? What the fuck is wrong with you people? "You people" meaning Germans. This explains more than any political/historical analysis ever could. My disgust is boundless.

Here in the U.S., the kind of lunacy exhibited by Gerhard, and recently by Al Gore, serves to alienate voters. It may energize the more extreme of the partisans, and yield enthusiastic cheers from those who enjoy political theater; but at least here, and at least so far, it turns off the voters, or turns them to the opposing party.

On that note: may Al make more speeches, may Shroeder take more engagements, and may Michael Moore, Cindy Sheehan, and Ted Kennedy stay in the press and media - until there is something serious to report.

P.S. I enjoyed Munich for the Oktoberfest last week, but why were so many Biergartens closed? The weather was fine! Well, a little wet, but fine.

Already in New York, where Mr Schröder has said in the past he could enjoy living, rumours have linked him to positions at the financial services giants Citigroup and Merrill Lynch.


Can we keep Schroeder out of the US?! Even in the small town where I live he is despised, and we find it revolting that he can once again capitalize on his actions against our country.

Perhaps the Oil-For-Food investigation will delve deep enough to get into Schroeder's pockets. One can only hope.

Gore and Schroeder are cut from the same cloth. Interesting that Gore chooses to speaks this way overseas. He knows very well that he can say whatever he wants to say right here at home. Why the roadshow? Gore needs to recognize that the American people don't prescribe to his philosophy. The Gore and Clinton administrations governed during the first WTC terrorist bombings. Gore and Clinton drove our national agenda for 8 years. We know what he's made of. Mr. Gore lost the presidency because the American people do not believe in abstaining our sovereignty, and Al Gore does.

And Schroeder...why the need for the tongue in cheek asshole remarks about a natural disaster? How cowardly. Notice how the jackass never says things like that about natural catastrophies elsewhere in the world. No "incompetant" haha funny remarks about the presponses and responses in Iran, Thailand, Pakistan, and other bastions of Liberalism. I'd like to ask him, if Americans are so freaking scary, why are we the only ones he could or would say this kind of thing about?

Gore and Schroeder are cut from the same cloth and are reading from the same scripture that dictates one world order, ruled by a communist UN God that panders to dictators and terrorists. I guess you could consider Kofi the holy see. No thanks, aholes.

On his homepage, this remark is missing:

"Die Auffassung, dass man auf Staatlichkeit verzichten könnte und dass ein solcher Verzicht positive Folgen hätte, ist - denke ich - in einigen Beispielen gründlich widerlegt worden - nicht zuletzt dort, wo die Entstaatlichung auf die Spitze getrieben worden ist. Ich will keine Beispiele von Katastrophen nennen, bei denen man sehen kann, was passiert, wenn keine organisierte Staatlichkeit vorhanden ist. Ich könnte ja Länder nennen, aber das Amt, das ich noch innehabe, verbietet das."


This way of speaking is exactly the reason why the people love him. As he said in this speech: He is one of them. But shouldn't a chancellor be better than them?

Danke, Schröder, wir sind wieder WER, nämlich eine Horde aufgehetzter arroganter Deutscher, die auf andere herabsehen.

"GERHARD Schröder, who stepped down on Monday as chancellor of Germany, has been offered a highly-paid post in the Russian energy giant Gazprom by Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, according to reports."


Ah, that explains everything. It seems the only unemployment Gerd has been concerned with is his own when his government days were over.

In the future Frank Walter Steinmeier will take care of the so important transatlantic releationship as the new foreign minister of Germany.

For those who don't know Steinmeier, he was Schröders Kanzleramtschef ( that's something like the Chief of Staff I think). Schröder once said " I only trust my wife and Frank ".


Whenever our new foreign minister has a question about how to deal with the Anglosaxons he only has to dial a phone number in Hannover and his former boss will give him some good advice.


yes, the "Kanzleramtschef" is the equivalent of the White House Chief of Staff, both in responsibilities and access to the chief executive (Chancellor/ POTUS).

and yes, his close relationship with Schroeder is not a good choice with regard to the trans-atlantic relations. but then, which social democrat would have been?

we can only hope that he can be confined by Merkel - something maybe made easier by the fact that he is not a very popular choice in his own party and may not have much backup from that corner.

Here is a cnn report on the new cabinet in english, if anybody is interested.

"Where was the more caring "social" European model while this was going on???"

And also this: Link

The article says, French prisons are worst of all. Alvaro Gil-Robles, COMMISSIONER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS has visited European prisons, refugee camps and psychiatric clinics for month, including 16 days he spent in France. What the Spaniard saw in "the country of the human rights" has shocked him. (...) A police officer confirmed the information for the newspaper "Le Parisien".

Up to four persons in a cell of only seven square metres, like animals. Hygienic conditions catastrophic. Prisoners vomit and urinate on the floor. Even rats were discovered. Despaired inmates mutilate themselves during shave and smear the walls with their blood, said the officer.

Prison "Les Baumettes" in Marseille is heavily criticized by Gil-Robles for overcrowding. (...)


the french prison issue has been covered here by David and Ray.

Right, Toby. Thanks.

@Johannes, Toby: It will be interesting to see whether Frank Walter Steinmeier will chose to take his Staatsminister colleague Rolf Schwanitz with him from the Chancellery to the Foreign Office, such as Joschka Fischer had his Ludger Volmer. If so, then the Foreign Office would employ a politician whose election campaign has just been "deplored" by its own Amerikakoordinator Karsten Voigt.

Schwanitz would be a bad surprise. But everything is possible now. Never expected to have a SPD-CDU/CSU-coalition....

EuroNZ, FranzisM

Rolf "She would have sent soldiers" Schwanitz a "bad surprise"? I would call his appointment a slap in the face of the US government and the American forces. How bad could it get ?

Cheer up, Johannes Tust.

Let us hope that Rolf Schwanitz does find a new home in the FM and will exert great influence on German foreign policy going forward.

I think his clear policy positions will help Germany both within Europe and internationally just as Gerhard ‘s policies did.

As for this in some way being negative for the US or the UK, I think it is very much a non-event. Did anyone really expect a change in German foreign policy? I for did not. So my expections appair to be on the way to being confirmed.

I hope he would make as one of his goals the same one Gerhard had in reforming NATO. Equally, I would hope he would push for more US Forces to be withdrawn from Germany. Both of these would be a win win for the US and Germany.

Schroeder immigrating into our country? I hope not. This man is definitely a "persona non grata" in the U.S.


Schroeder say he would enjoy living in new york. hey gerhard- stay the hell off of US soil, whores ofyour type are not wanted in the US.
"Already in New York, where Mr Schröder has said in the past he could enjoy living, rumours have linked him to positions at the financial services giants Citigroup and Merrill Lynch."
This fool schroeder does not realise he would be TRULY un-welcome here in the US with his 15,000 a month pension.
If this asshole takes a job with a capitalist investment bank, would then then dis-qualify him from a pension, or would it simply be added to his wallet so he can buy more pimp suits?

Germany has problems. The major media tilt left and the major parties are at parity. A coalition government is forced on the right so that it will have all the blame but only half the power to put its program into practice. It is a recipe for failure.

There are two things that the CDU/CSU needs to do:
1. Forget about Gerhard Schroeder. Focus on the program, on the future, on showing the ordinary German that their ideas and their party are worth supporting with full control of the government next time.
2. Prepare for the next election. The SPD will be working hard at engineering failures that reflect badly on the CDU/CSU. They should not be allowed to get away with it.

The caring European social model? Please. Europe CAN'T TAKE CARE OF ITS OWN BACK YARD. BOSNIA KOSOVO!

Gerhard is having his Al Gore moment. Give him his spoon and his drool rag and he'll be OK when the nice men in the little bus come to take him back to the home.

gerd means gastric reflux disease here in the states!!
thought you'd like that!!
Don't worry, the euros are starting to figure it out. Don't forget that there was a support on the western side to hold that wall up. It takes a little time but things do get better.
I still think the parlimentary system is a joke.
but what do I know...I'm an American that isnt smart enough to ahve a standing welfare army to save idiots from themselves!
Look it an ocean, let's build right here!!

Buh-bye, Gerhard, and don't let the screen door hit you in the ass. And to the people of Germany: Congratulations for turning your government in a more positive direction. It may not be all we hoped for, but it's a good start.

Yes this is the speech I mentioned on the last Gerhard thread.

"I do not want to name any catastrophes where you can see what happens if organised state action is absent. I could name countries, but the position I still hold forbids it, but everyone knows I mean America,".

This is just one of a series of crap lines he came out with... from them it is the most offensive. Not just because of its anti-American line but also as the main news item of the day was also about the rising death toll in India and Pakistan.... it also got a good laugh from those at the conference.

I see this article is now being linked to from LGF.

Diejenigen, die bewaffnet sind und Widerstand leisten, sollen nach Putins Worten ausgelöscht werden. AUSGELÖSCHT! Was gab es für Proteste, als Bush sagte, er wolle Osama Bin Laden tot oder lebendig! Putins Methoden hingegen werden in unseren Medien kaum beachtet. Die Tötung Mascharows hatte gerade mal Achselzucken verursacht. Aber wenn Bush, jemanden als "böse" bezeichnet, entfacht das erregte Beschimpfungen.

"I do not want to name any catastrophes where you can see what happens if organised state action is absent. I could name countries, but the position I still hold forbids it, but everyone knows I mean America,".

Why not France and the rest of the EU, I will match our
handling of Katrina and Rita with how France,Germany and the EU
handled the Heat Wave during the Summer of 2003

October 9, 2003: Record Heat Wave in Europe Takes 35000 Lives
A record heat wave scorched Europe in August 2003, claiming an estimated 35000
... Lester R. Brown, "Global Temperature Near Record for 2002," Eco-Economy ...
www.earth-policy.org/Updates/Update29.htm - 32k - Cached - Similar pages

A record heat wave scorched Europe in August 2003, claiming an estimated 35,000 lives. In France alone, 14,802

This summer's high temperatures also hit other European countries. Germany saw some 7,000 people die from the heat. Spain and Italy each suffered heat-related losses of nearly 4,200 lives. The heat wave claimed at least 1,300 lives in Portugal and up to 1,400 lives in the Netherlands

Gore told reporters after giving a speech at an economic forum in Sweden.
. "We would not have taken money from the working families and given it to the most wealthy families."

That part of the Socialis screed I REALLY hate, item when you let me keep more of what was already
mine you have given me NOTHING. NOT A RED CENT was TAKEN from poor families and GIVEN
to rich ones, as a matter of fact as an income group the lowest 20% get $3 of actually federal cash
payments for each $1 of taxes they pay.

John "Two Americas" Edwards is going to Wall Street.
Schroeder cannot be far behind. I put a lot of credence to the Merrill Lynch rumor.

Schroeder came up with a last minute ploy, falling down on the floor, kicking and screaming and demanding a new vote. With apologies to Robocop, and this time he wants to win. When it finally dawned that he was through, did anybody check to see if he hadn't taken the toys home with him.

Secret disclosed: Schroeder to become the next James Bond!

http://gegenstimme.blogg.de/eintrag.php?id=290 (Language: German)

"Gore told reporters after giving a speech at an economic forum in Sweden.
. 'We would not have taken money from the working families and given it to the most wealthy families.'"

Yeah, that's the same old typical, and tired, refrain uttered by folks as they pander to their constituents -- most of whom are not rich, of course. Now, for a more reasonable take on this I refer you to this:

The U.S. Income Tax Burden:
An Analysis of Congressional Budget Office (CBO) Numbers


The intro begins:

Below is an analysis of Congressional Budget Office (CB0) report entitled "Preliminary Estimates of Effective Tax Rates" (07-Sep-1999). The raw numbers can be scrutinized here:


All I did was try to make heads or tails of the data by plotting it and extracting the most salient data. The Income Tax Burden is defined simply as who pays U.S. income taxes in the form of individual and corporate income taxes, payroll taxes, and federal excise taxes. Based on this information, the following conclusions clearly emerge:

* An enormous percentage of taxes are payed by a minority of Americans:
o The Top 1% of taxpayers pay 29% of all taxes.
o The Top 5% of taxpayers pay 50% of all taxes.
* Our tax system is not so much progressive as it is confiscatory -- Frederic Bastiat called this phenomenon "legal plunder." A progressive tax is based on the premise that those with more income can afford to pay more taxes, and conversely, those with little or no income should pay no tax. However, a quick look at Graph 1A below shows that the U.S. tax system has become far beyond progressive. Fully half the taxpayers contribute almost nothing in individual income taxes.
* The Top 1% of income earners (comprising about 1 million families) earn about 15% of the total income earned by all wage earners in the United States, yet they pay almost 30% of all individual income taxes.
* Furthermore, the Top 1% are shouldering a roughly 50% higher proportion of the overall income tax burden than they did in 1977.
* The argument most oft used against tax breaks are that they benefit only the wealthy. It is clear from even a cursory look at the numbers below that the 'wealthy' will receive the majority of any income tax reduction because they pay a disproportionately huge percentage of the income taxes! To structure a tax break such that those in upper income brackets are excluded would constitute nothing more than transfer of wealth from those who have it to those who don't (i.e. legal plunder.)


"Diejenigen, die bewaffnet sind und Widerstand leisten, sollen nach Putins Worten ausgelöscht werden. AUSGELÖSCHT! Was gab es für Proteste, als Bush sagte, er wolle Osama Bin Laden tot oder lebendig! Putins Methoden hingegen werden in unseren Medien kaum beachtet. Die Tötung Mascharows hatte gerade mal Achselzucken verursacht. Aber wenn Bush, jemanden als "böse" bezeichnet, entfacht das erregte Beschimpfungen."

That is an excellent point you raise there, gabi. (For all non german speakers: Gabi pointed out that Mr. Putin has announced to "exterminate" armed resistance fighters in Russia - something the german media have hardly reported at all - however, when President Bush wanted BinLaden "dead or alive" he was badly scalded in the german press).

In fact, I noticed the same. Isn't it amazing how they fail to report about hardly any russian atrocities in the Kaukasus ? That wasn't always the case, I remember some fierce news stories in the 90s when Yelzin was still in the Kremlin. But now whith Gerd and Vlad being buddies, that somehow stopped.

@Toby - "How bad could it get ?"

Well, I'm glad you ask...

There's the so-called "Antiimperialist Cell" in the Chancellery - Frank-Walter Steinmeier, whose party maintains a political dialogue with Hezbollah through the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, August Hanning, the foreign intelligence chief who submits himself as a hostage to the terrorists from time to time to build new confidence, and Ernst Uhrlau, the intelligence coordinator who keeps telling the Israelis that there was still hope for Ron Arad. Remember how they freed Elhanan Tannenbaum last year, for the price of the release of only a few hundred Islamic terrorists?

Two days after the election Frank-Walter-Steinmaier gave a farewell speech to whom he called "the" foreign policy advisor of Red-Green. And at the heart of this speech - "I promised it, and I hope this promise won't be broken" - there is a declaration of his intention to relocate Germany's foreign intelligence service to the political capital, from central Bavaria where it was installed post-WWII to ensure that Germany would never again transform from a government with a secret service into a secret service with a government. Coincidentally, the Berlin site for the Bundesnachrichtendienst would be a former sports stadion near the Palestinian Embassy, where 1973 Yasser Arafat spoke to the Communist World Youth Festival. Oh blessed nostalgia! Maybe Frank-Walter Steinmeier should begin his service with a cheerup visit to the poor Palestinian delegation which still has to endure the humiliating outlook at an empty construction site across the street every day...


That is an excellent idea.

There is something very strange going on with this new grand coalition of the unwilling.

If for a moment you consider there were two aspects to the last election, those being internal and external concerns. The external aspects seem to be have been won by Gerhard and crew. Neither the spd nor the Union seems to be clear winners when it came to internal policies.

I would define internal as things like reforms, health care, education, taxes, labor laws, etc. External would be everything else.

During the negotiation phase, Merkel seems to have given up a lot. Almost all the ministerial posts where the heavy lifting will have to take place to reform the German economy all are in the hands of the spd. Also the key external post is too.

So as if many believe this coalition will accomplish little and things do not improve, then where does the blame really lie? It is would appear Merkel is a chancellor within a spd government.

This might be very smart on her part but surely it is a huge gamble. I say smart because as the changes are made and minor pain is felt with the demonstrated results still at some point in the future, Merkel can say the spd were in charge of those areas of the government that failed to produce.

The gamble for her and the Union is Germans will view her as being in charge and fault her with the overall failure of the government to improve things.

As I said this was a rather boring election cycle. The only surprise was the results. Then again as the Germans have trouble making choices this too was not much of a surprise. T

The next election should be much more interesting. Little will have changed and in fact may be worse if one believes in business cycles.

@joe: Provided that the SPD party convention next month will approve a Grand Coalition, there's still one thing which makes this cycle different from the last ones. The Bundesverfassungsgericht decided that the Vertrauensfrage was justified because the chancellor's decision whether he is trusted or not was "of a prognostic nature." So the chancellor can bring up the Vertrauenfrage whenever she believes the course her cabinet is trying to take will lead to a future situation that will make it lose trust in her.To end up with a situation such as you are describing it, Angela Merkel would have to lose nerves against a SPD that is still a bit puzzled from being led into declaring its trust in Gerhard Schröder by means of a vote of nonconfidence.


The question to be answered is who will the Germans hold responsible and accoutable for the continued decline.

Will it be the various Ministers or will it be the head of the government?

I am afraid the German people are indoctrinated and will freely choose not take a forward path. I am also convinced that the Parliamentary system is a poor system in which to promote freedom and accountability, possibly a fatal flaw.

What hope can you really have? It appears mass genocidal murders like Saddam, terrorists and the noble Iraqi "insurgents" are cheered, and those working, fighting and dying to deliver the essential human right to self-determination are demonized.

The German people seem to believe that tyranny and freedom are equally wonderful. I have very little hope that Germany will find her way forward to a strong, healthy and sustainable Democracy.

However, I do believe the Iraqis will. Unlike the Germans, Iraqi's WANT to be free.

@joe - "Who will the Germans hold responsible and accoutable for the continued decline?"

America, of course. ;-(

The question of the distribution of responsibility has been addressed in the Richtlinienkompetenz debate this week. Now the teams are taking position and the players will soon be out in the field, so don't ask in advance what might happen in the course of the match. Angela Merkel's strength is that she has fought an uphill battle all along, while her potential coalition partners just have to overcome the retreat of their respective überfathers.

The question to be answered is who will the Germans hold responsible and accoutable for the continued decline.

Will it be the various Ministers or will it be the head of the government?

You're looking no the wrong side of the ocean.

Yes, I realized how silly the question was just after I hit the post button.

Of course, the Germans will blame someone other than themselves. The voters cannot be blamed because they got the government they wanted. Knowing how well Germans do when given a choice, it is only logical this was their preference.

Now having just what they wanted, should this government fail to perform to the voters’ expectations, whatever those might be, then it has to be the fault of some other faction.

It has to be the fault of America. Yes, those damn Americans.

Germans never do anything wrong.

That is of course a statement against which I can only come up with a German version of Epimenides Paradox. If a German told you all Germans were liars, would you believe him?

We've still not yet moved away very far from Schröders farewell statement "I could name countries, but everyone knows I mean America", and saving our collective discourse from revolving around a fictious elephant in the room will take some time and efforts. You've seen in the Rolf Schwanitz campaign that blame against America comes under the guise of blame against Angela Merkel. SPD ministers might try to deflect blame against themselves to America. Rational performance assessment is not the only parameter in the equation for the popularity of members of our government, thus any predictions would have to be as unreliable and short-term as the underlying ideological factors. For a while, these might still be more important for the distribution of blame than the place in the hierarchy.

Yes, the aftermath of Red-Green is a complicated situation, but then remember how things looked a year ago when Schröder was still popular for his voodo economics.

Klaus Harpprecht über Schröder:

"Der Wahlkampf, den er mit unerschöpflicher Energie, mit Witz und einem tödlich-klaren Blick für die Schwächen der Gegner bestritt (die ihm den unglückseligen "Professor aus Heidelberg" als Ersatz für Elbflut und Irak-Krieg servierten): seine Heldenschlacht war eine der brillantesten Leistungen in der Geschichte der deutschen Demokratie, Willy Brandts Kampagne im Herbst 1972 ebenbürtig."


Heldenschlacht??? Ich kann nicht beurteilen, wie Brandt die Wahlen 1972 gewonnen hat, aber die Schröder-Hetze als brilliant anzusehen, diesen Wahlkampf ohne Inhalt, der allein mit dämlicher Propaganda gewonnen wurde, zu lobpreisen, das macht mich wirklich sprachlos. Kann man so blind sein?!

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