German chancellor Angela Merkel to step down, but not quite yet


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/10/29/german-chancellor-angela-merke-2.html


#2

Can we get her to replace Sandra Day O’Conner?

Please?


#3

Can someone do a quick and dirty ELI5?

I can’t really parse how I would translate this because I am only familiar with the US’s two party system.

ETA: Drank coffee, and realized this was gibberish before. Fixed it.


#4

Pick a side, centrists. It’s up in the air whether center-right/fascist or center-left/socialist coalitions will carry the day, but it becomes ever clearer that the “slice” in the middle isn’t any bigger than the slice on either side. And, bonus, you get to actually stand for something!


#5

Wait, what?


#6

It really pisses me off that this story is universally portrayed in the media as a story about Merkel fading, or about the rise of the extreme right. But it’s really a story about a surge in support for the Greens, who gained more seats in Hesse than total lost by the CDU and SPD together, and are now a much more significant force across nearly all German state parliaments than any extreme right party.


#7

Voters peeled off to the left and right: greens and fascists shared the votes her centrist coalition lost.

Things aren’t looking good for one of the last bastions of liberal democracy. At least the Greens came out ahead of AfD and have more power than before to pull Germany away from fascism.


#8

Why on earth would you want one of the major proponents of austerity on the Supreme Court. It’s baffling.


#9

So her tradition of doing the bare minimum continues to the very end.

Unfortunately, I don’t think history will be kind to Merkel.her continual inaction and timidity in the face of the great recession earned her temporary support in Germany (which was doing well, but only at the expense of grinding poverty and pointless austerity in preipheral Europe), but only at the cost of eroding European unity to breaking point, and facilitating the rise of the Far-right.


#10

It remains to be seen who will write the history books.

Just saying.

ETA: what @sme said. But it remains also to be seen what this means. The Green party has had a strong social and ecological grassroots movement behind them. Now, with the partial success of a Green-CDU and CDU-Green coalitions, they arrived where their clientele has been for some time: conservative centre with a social touch.

Fun thing is: they would still be labeled radical socialist in the US.


#11

European Green parties certainly would, CDU is more like centrist Democrats perhaps? Not entirely sure but I don’t think they’re at Republican levels of conservatism, usually.


#12

Depends on which branch. Merkel herself would be considered left of the US centrists, I guess. Our current minister of health, however, and contender for her party office (and thus, candidate for chancellor)… I don’t know where he fits in the US system, but here, he’s a right-wing populists within the CDU.


#13

Hmm I don’t know that much about him, but this being Germany it’ll be all over Dutch news soon enough. It will be an interesting fight for succession to be sure. With Merkel making this announcement years in advance I can’t imagine it’ll do her position any good, kind of a baffling time for it. Also makes the balance of power in the EU a bit more fluid.


#14

German AND Hessian here.
I voted green yesterday. I would have liked to see Tarek Al Wazir as hessian prime minister, he did a good job as the leader of the hessian greens in the coalition with the CDU in the last five years.
Also I think Merkel making room will definitively weaken the AfD, since many of their voters just voted for them because they were displeased with Merkel (I know thats a stupid reason to vote for the fascists, but those people are not exactly rocket sciencists).


#15

Not from a domestic perspective. The call for it was loud and clear during the last days. Actually, it buys her time to settle some things (like influencing who is going to be the next Spitzenkandidatin), and it is a way to try to stabilise the current gouvernment. Which, I think, is the idea behind the whole move: if she now indicates she will leave (and even for good, giving up her seat altogether!) AFTER the current term, she is relieving pressure. If she stepped down quicker, the coalition might break, Germany would need new national elections and the AfD would win further, while the SPD would be further reduced.

(I agree, but not if the coalition breaks and elections would be ASAP. )


#16

But won’t she become, to use an American term, a lame duck?


#17

I thought about this this morning, and while she already has been called that, I suppose there is no such thing in German politics. The US system works quite different from the German. There is no formal or informal agreement that substantial law cannot be passed, our supreme court is not selected by the chancellor (not the president), etc.

While there might be a sense of lame duckishness, she still has the last quak in many decisions, so-called Richtlinienkompetenz. Also, her party would - usually, that is - not be inclined to act against the own chancellor. Internal pressure is currently high, but she is giving it a valve with her decision.


#18

center-left Social Democrats appear to have been severely punished for joining her government

that goes far back as 2005 till today with just one “normal” administration in between (see below for link)). nobody in germany gives a fuck anymore about the SPD; they are not “center-left” (never really were), they are without any doubt pure neoliberal assholes, which they made absolutly clear with the last SPD-cancelor Schröder, der " genosse der bosse" (comrade of the bosses) 1998-2005. they absolutly fucking deserve to go down completly. sorry the rant, but even the CDU/CSU is not as hypocritical and dishonest as the SPD, seriously, fuck. them. all.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_coalition_(Germany)#1st,3rd_and_4th_Merkel_cabinet(2005-2009,_2013-2018,_2018-)


#19

hopefully. may be the last chance to keep the fascists under 20% the next time…


#20

Replace her for what? She is retired.

Also, has dementia it seems :confused: