AfD mobilized irrational fears of future, especially in the east, say pollsters | In Depth | DW | 25.09.2017

Here’s a first-rate article from Germany’s DW. In their post-election analysis, researchers say that the Alternative for Germany‘s success cannot be reduced to any one particular group. Nonetheless, as a community, AfD supporters are unlike other German voters.

Source: AfD mobilized irrational fears of future, especially in the east, say pollsters | In Depth | DW | 25.09.2017

This article puts the AfD election success in context. There are six core threads emerging. Here are the main threads:

  1. The AfD is strong not just in the east, but also among younger eastern voters
  2. The AfD recruits significant support from former non-voters on the Internet
  3. The AfD’s success does not represent a massive lurch to the right
  4. The AfD is a protest party but not only that
  5. The AfD depends on fear of foreigners that is actually a fear of the modern world
  6. The AfD is fundamentally different from other German parties

Time will tell whether these are the only factors. For sure, Germany must face radical change in the workplace, like other advanced countries, and we must hope that those people most affected, especially the young, do not turn to the Far Right.

Since 1945, modern Germany has emerged as a beacon of democracy, with a balance of power between political classes, workers, business and the law, especially the Constitutional Court. Unfortunately, Germany’s post-war success is probably not sustainable for all. Whilst business and the wider economy will continue to grow and compete, Germany’s labour force will potentially become more hostile.

Thoughts?

 

Opinion – Sleepwalking Towards Frexit – Wolfgang Kowalsky – Social Europe – John Gelmini

Dr Alf is probably right to worry about Frexit, although I see as more likely a split in the EU between the countries of Northern Europe, centred on Germany, and those of Southern Europe centred on France. The EU as now constituted has reached a size which renders it unwieldy, ponderous in its decision-making and completely unable to move at a pace commensurate with the circumstances which it faces.

Brexit happened because those of us who are old enough to remember, compared the promises made in 1975 with what was actually delivered, and saw that for everyone beyond Germany, the promises were not delivered.

Effectively, we were given a new “Greater Germany” and open and unfettered borders.

The UK for the past 150 years has suffered from low worker productivity and bosses overpaying themselves and these two issues are still not being addressed. Many C1s, C2s, Ds and Es, drawn from the old unionised and craft based industries, and those displaced by automation, still believe that they should have been the inheritors of the victors after World War II but have found themselves marginalised, the same is true of France. This great “unwashed mass” could have been placated had the EU at least attempted to honestly address the questions about worker productivity, executive pay and the need for competitiveness.

These issues have not been addressed in France either, so the effect is that with the unnecessary influx of Syrian refugees and additional economic migrants caused my Chancellor Merkel and a Western Europe rather too keen to impose quotas on the indigenous populations, a tinderbox has been created.

It is most unlikely that the present crop of EU leaders and the French elite will see the necessity to tackle these issues because they are too remote, too out of touch and too entranced with their own deliberations at Bilderberg meetings where they blithely imagine a world of AI and robotics with 50% to 75% of ordinary people as jobless serfs with short lifespans.

Someone sensible needs to take a grip in France and the rest of Europe and start addressing these issues and the long overdue reform of the EU in its present and future slimmed down form of a new European Northern League and another for the South.

John Gelmini