12
   

Elections in Germany update:No turn to the right, after all!

 
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Sun 3 Oct, 2004 07:53 am
Since today is Unification Day: east and west are now eating the same amount of bananas per capita. :wink:

Deutsche Welle has a nicely done summary:
14 Years of German Unification
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Sun 3 Oct, 2004 08:29 am
Walter Hinteler wrote:
Indeed, I see Angela Merkel's Christian-Democrats different to nimh.

That's OK Razz

But then you haven't experienced what the VVD has been like here, the past two years ... ;-)

Walter Hinteler wrote:
The Social-Democrats didn't really move a lot in the 80's and early 90's, I think - all started about ten years ago, IMHO.

Yes, I meant they moved since the 80s / early 90s. It's a different party from what it was back then - at least the Labour Party here is. So we're saying the same thing.

Walter Hinteler wrote:
Take for instance the the student organisations of the parties. Themes, the established left is aiming for more are about the very as in the 70's ... but in the program of the conservative/right RCDS at those times.

Yeah ... it's like, the "far-left" Socialist Party here now, they basically just have the programme the Labour Party used to have in the 70s/80s. The Green Left is to the right of that, and the current Labour Party is more at where the left-liberal Democrats used to be - who in turn are now in the right-wing government. The whole landscape has shifted to the right. There's nothing like what used to be the "small left" (Communists, Pacifist Socialists, Radicals) anymore.

In fairness, for a long while at least (until the Fortuynists came along two years ago), the right wing too wasn't anything as right-wing anymore as it used to be in the 70s. This was reflected in public polling, too. There's researchers who every year or every few years poll people on how they rank themselves on a political scale, 1 (left) to 10 (right). Back in the 70s, from what I remember reading, a full 10% answered 1, and something similar answered 9 or 10. By the late nineties, almost noone said 1 or 10 anymore.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Mon 14 Feb, 2005 12:29 pm
Quote:
Neo-Nazis upstage Dresden memorial

5,000 people take part in a funeral march to the music of Wagner to mourn civilians killed by the allied bombing raids

Luke Harding in Dresden
Monday February 14, 2005
The Guardian

Waving black flags and banners, thousands of neo-Nazis marched through the heart of Dresden yesterday on the 60th anniversary of the city's destruction by British and American bombers.
In the largest neo-Nazi demonstration in Germany's postwar history, about 5,000 people took part in a "funeral march" to mourn the civilians killed by the allied attack.

The protest upstaged the official commemoration of the anniversary, during which the British ambassador laid a wreath at a cemetery where victims were buried. Meanwhile, thousands of local citizens gathered in the old square for a candlelight vigil.

Large numbers of riot police were drafted into Dresden as several hundred anti-fascists hurled abuse at the far-right marchers and shouted: "Nazis out!"

The neo-Nazis marched to the music of Wagner and Bach, blaring from loudspeakers. As they crossed the Elbe towards the old city, they encountered several hundred anti-fascists. The organisers merely turned up the volume and played the Ride of the Valkyries.

Several anti-fascists waved British, US and Israeli flags. Others chanted: "You lost the war" and "Stalingrad was wonderful". Confetti and pink paper aeroplanes with RAF markings were thrown.

"This is a terrible day for Dresden - I'm furious," said Ursula Hamann, 77, who lives in the city and survived the 1945 attack. "It's sad to see something like this happening in Germany again."

Edeltraud Krause said: "Look at them. You just have to look at their stupid faces. They do not represent us." [..]

Support for the [neo-Nazi National Party of Germany (NPD)] appears to be rising, especially in depressed areas of the former communist East Germany, where unemployment averages 20%.

"My husband and I are NPD voters," said Anni Lutzner, who attended yesterday's NPD-organised rally in Dresden. "We believe that the German state favours foreigners and the Jews."

She added: "There's no point in banning us - we'll simply find a new name."

Hundreds of young skinheads attended the neo-Nazi rally. But the marchers also included pensioners who were driven out, like vast numbers of German refugees, from East Prussia - now divided between Russia and Poland.

They carried black balloons with the slogan: "Allied bombing terror - never forgive, never forget." Addressing the rally, the NPD's leader in the Saxon parliament, Holger Apfel, launched an attack on what he called the "gangster politics of the British and Americans".

He said: "They have left a trail of blood from the past to the present, via Dresden, Korea, Vietnam, Baghdad and - tomorrow possibly - Tehran. Terror and war have a name. And that name is the United States of America."

Other speakers accused Winston Churchill of wanting "to roast" Germans.

They also accused the German authorities of deliberately under-estimating the number of civilians killed in Dresden during the raids on February 13 and 14 1945.

Most historians put the figure at 35,000.

"I have no sympathy with the neo-Nazis. We don't want to go through those terrible times again," said Gena Mothes, 85, who survived the raid. [..] Mrs Mothes, who watched the allied bombs fall, was one of many Dresdeners who laid flowers yesterday at the cemetery where civilian victims were buried. [..]


See also the eight or nine responses following this post in the "Following the EU" thread.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Mar, 2005 06:02 am
We talked about it already in the Following The EU thread: last week's elections in Germany's northern state of Schleswig-Holstein. It was quite spectacular: after the exit polls had shown the conservative opposition winning a narrow majority, the Christian Democrats and liberal Free Democrats celebrated all evening - until the final score showed up that the Socialdemocrat-Green coalition actually scraped by after all, be it barely: with support of the party of the Danish and Frysian minorities, it would be able to get a majority of 1 seat in parliament.

And so it's gone: pro forma negotiations between the Socialdemocratic SPD and the Christian-Democratic CDU broke down and now the SPD is negotiating with the Greens about a continuation of their coalition and with the Danish/Frysian SSW about a pledge to support/tolerate it. The parliamentary vote for Prime Minister of the state will take place on 17 March and current SPD Prime Minister Heide Simonis, who was the focus of an election campaign with the slogan He!de, is expected to be re-elected.

Anyway: what was missing so far were the actual numbers. So I thought I'd update this thread. Again, from left to right you have the number of votes (in thousands) this time and last time, and gains/losses in votes; the percentage, this time and last time, and gains/losses in percentages; and finally, gains/losses in percentages compared to the national elections of 2002.

Code:SCHLESWIG-HOLSTEIN 20 FEBRUARY 2005

ELECTION RESULTS REGIONAL ELECTIONS

PARTY '05 #k '00 #k +/- 2005 % 2000 % +/- 2002+/- CLASSIF

CDU/CSU 576 515 + 61 40,2 35,2 + 5,0 + 4,2 Chr-Dem
SPD 555 631 - 76 38,7 43,1 - 4,4 - 4,2 Soc-Dem
GRUENE 89 91 - 2 6,2 6,2 + 0,0 - 3,2 Greens
FDP 95 112 - 17 6,6 7,6 - 1,0 - 1,4 RW-Lib
PDS 11 20 - 9 0,8 1,4 - 0,6 - 0,5 Ex-Comm
SSW 52 60 - 8 3,6 4,1 - 0,5 + 3,6 Danish
NPD 28 15 + 13 1,9 1,0 + 0,9 + 1,6 Neo-Nazi
SCHILL * * * * * * - 1,5 FarRight
FAMILIE 12 * + 12 0,8 * + 0,8 + 1,9 Centr
GRAUE 8 4 + 4 0,5 0,3 + 0,2 + 0,3 Elderly
STATT * 9 - 9 * 0,6 - 0,6 * Local
OTHERS 9 6 + 3 0,6 0,5 + 0,1 + 0,3

TURNOUT 66,6 69,5


For the Christian-Democratic CDU, the result was the best since 1987 - although still less than in any of the 25 years before that. For the Socialdemocratic SPD, the results were marginally worse than those of 1996, and with that, the worst in at least 40 years. With turnout 3% lower than four years ago (though still at a decent 66,6%), the only party that scored a significant net gain of voters was the CDU, which got some 61 thousand votes more than last time.

Compared to the state elections of five years ago, there's a distinct shift of some 5-6% to the right, with the Christian-Democrats the big winner and the neo-nazi NPD and centrist Family Party picking up votes too, while the SPD is the big loser and the ex-communist PDS, alternative local party STATT and the right-wing liberal FDP lost ground as well. Compared to the national elections of three years ago, the picture is roughly the same, with the Christian-Democrats picking up exactly as much as the Socialdemocrats lost, while on the far right the neonazi NPD picks up the voters who opted for populist Schill back then, and the Greens, ex-communists and right-wing liberals lose ground to the centrist SSW and Family Party.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Mar, 2005 06:43 am
Interesting (or alarming, depending on how you look at it) is the analysis by voter groups, courtesy of ZDF and FAZ.

It's no surprise that the Greens did best among the youth (12% of those up to 30) and have hardly any support among those over 60 (2%). Interesting is that the right-wing liberal FDP, whose support four years ago was evenly spread among the age groups, was now also concentrated amongst those under 30 (11%). Not surprising is that the Christian-Democrats do by far the best among those over 60 (49%) and both Christian-Democrats and Socialdemocrats do worst among those under 30 (both getting just 32% of them); nor that the SPD, with He!de in charge, did better among women (42% to the CDU's 38%) than among men (36% to the CDU's 41%).

It's the division by professional groups that confirms earlier trends and should raise some eyebrows. The Socialdemocrats traditionally, of course, have done best among workers, getting 57% of their vote four years ago, as well as 49% of the unemployed. In comparison, the SPD four years ago got just 44% of white-collar workers and 25% of the self-employed. But it's among those blue-collar workers that the party now was hit hardest by far. It netted a loss of 13% among blue-collar workers and 12% among the unemployed, while it lost only 3% among white-collar workers.

That's pretty much egalised the social profile of the party: it now does about just as well/badly among all groups except the self-employed. This I'm sure is a national trend too, and one that has drastically impacted the Labour Party here in Holland in the nineties - and eventually gave rise to the emergence of a strong far right (List Fortuyn) and far left (Socialist Party). In Schleswig-Holstein for now the workers and unemployed have simply switched to the Christian-Democrats, which netted a gain of 11% among workers and 10% among unemployed compared to an overall net gain of just 5%. The switch was also disproportionate in the age group 30-44, in which the SPD lost 10%.

Regional details: the Greens did best in the city of Kiel (9-13%), while the SPD did best in Kiel as well as Lubeck (42-47%). Far-right NPD and far-left PDS also did best in Lubeck and Kiel's working class eastern district. The Danish/Frysian SSW had its northeastern strongholds in and around Flensburg (12-15%) and Schleswig (8-9%).

EDITED to add:

Just adding the numbers for the four state elections this past half a year - Saarland, Sachsen, Brandenburg and Schleswig-Holstein (but not the Nordrhein Westfalen local elections), I'm getting this net balance in thousands of votes:

Code:CHRISTIAN-DEMOCRATS - 425

SOCIAL-DEMOCRATS - 275

GREENS + 77

RIGHTWING-LIBERALS + 111

EX-COMMUNISTS + 77

NEO-NAZIS + 184
OTHER NATIONALIST - 73

FAMILY PARTY + 50
ELDERLY PARTIES + 44
FREE/LOCAL/REGIONAL + 3
OTHERS + 56

TOTAL - 171
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Mar, 2005 07:55 am
Walter Hinteler wrote:
Since today is Unification Day: east and west are now eating the same amount of bananas per capita. :wink:

Deutsche Welle has a nicely done summary:
14 Years of German Unification


Same amount of bananas but folks sure don't care much for each other.

reuters link

Quote:
Many Germans Want Berlin Wall Back, Study Finds
Sat Mar 26, 2005 08:30 AM ET
(Reuters) - Nearly a quarter of western Germans and 12 percent of easterners want the Berlin Wall back -- more than 15 years after the fall of the barrier that split Germany during the Cold War, according to a new survey.

The results of the poll, published Saturday, reflected die-hard animosities over high reunification costs lowering western standards of living and economic turmoil in the east.


<snip>

Quote:
The poll also found that 47 percent of the easterners agree with the statement that the West "acquired the east like a colony," while 58 percent of the westerners back the statement that "easterners tend to wallow in self-pity."
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Mar, 2005 12:01 pm
The figures of that poll didn't vary significantly from the last poll, done in September 2004.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Mar, 2005 01:17 pm
Would they get along better as separate countries, Walter?

Maybe with an invisible wall, the way most of the world does countries.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Mar, 2005 01:22 pm
ehBeth wrote:
Would they get along better as separate countries, Walter?

Maybe with an invisible wall, the way most of the world does countries.


I think, actually "both sites" are doing better than before - when don't look at the costs, I mean :wink:

Honestly, only 'hardliners' and 'stick-in-the-muds' can wish the old times back.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Mar, 2005 01:43 pm
I dunno.

I don't, myself, suggest going back to to the old times, but wonder about finding a new formulation where people who don't want to be together aren't shackled together.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Mar, 2005 02:30 pm
ehBeth wrote:
a new formulation where people who don't want to be together aren't shackled together.

"Nearly a quarter of western Germans and 12 percent of easterners". Sounds like a distinct minority to me.

Would probably be even less if it were something considered a realistic prospect rather than an opportunity to flippantly express your chagrin in a poll.

Walter - how did it end in Schleswig-Holstein? I read something about another "thriller", with Heide failing to be re-elected in a parliamentary vote three times in a row because in the anonymous vote, someone of her own party kept voting against? What happened after that? Did they fix it after all or do they have a grand coalition now?
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Mar, 2005 03:14 pm
nimh wrote:
Walter - how did it end in Schleswig-Holstein? I read something about another "thriller", with Heide failing to be re-elected in a parliamentary vote three times in a row because in the anonymous vote, someone of her own party kept voting against? What happened after that? Did they fix it after all or do they have a grand coalition now?


CDU and SPD are now trying to build a great coalition.

.... and four times, it was Twisted Evil
0 Replies
 
hamburger
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Mar, 2005 04:59 pm
have just started reading peter schneider's : "the german comedy : scenes of life after the wall" , originally published in german in 1991 under the title : "extreme mittellage - eine reise durch das deutsche nationalgefuehl". while it is outdated, the book gives me a somewhat better insight into what happened in germany - and particularly berlin - at that time. even though we were in germany just within days after the wall came down, we saw it mainly through the eyes of the 'wessies'.

i see on the internet that schneider is currently a-writer-in-residence at georgetown university.

how valid are his observations on germany ? i wonder if i should try to get some of the other books he has written. i find the translation somewhat stilted, perhaps the original (german) issue might be better. hbg
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Mar, 2005 05:11 pm
ehBeth wrote:
Quote:
The poll also found that 47 percent of the easterners agree with the statement that the West "acquired the east like a colony," while 58 percent of the westerners back the statement that "easterners tend to wallow in self-pity."


Not so much of a minority that really don't seem to like each other.

Picking off the percentage that want the physical wall back is one thing - but looking at the strong feelings of dislike between the two groups is another.

There's a difference between thinking it was good for the wall to come done, and thinking those two groups of people would make a comfortable or good mix.

I know there are people who talk about whether they prefer Gast-Arbeiter or Osties in the former West - which is pretty shocking to me (that it is even discussed). Once again, I'm glad hamburger and mrs. hamburger came to Canada.
0 Replies
 
hamburger
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Mar, 2005 05:24 pm
ehbeth : don't forget that we have plenty of "inter-provincial" squabbles. a/t latest newspaper articles these squabbles have taken on a new tune of nastiness when the federal government cut a special financial deal with the government of newfoundland. a/t to today's "toronto star" editorial (and the "star" is generally fairly liberal, even 'socialist' i'd say), the ontario provincial government should go after the federal government for more money; but where is the money going to come from ? perhaps before too long we'll have easties / wessies / quebecois and (of course) ontaaaarioaaans trying to cut up the financial pie in a different way. hbg
0 Replies
 
hamburger
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Mar, 2005 06:05 pm
a/t to schneider's book, one of the things quite upsetting to the east-germans (at the time of re-unification) was the large number of 'foreigners' that had settled in west-germany. while east germany did have quite a few foreigners - he cites the 60,000 vietnamese workers in east-germeny - these were apparently kept segregated from the general population. he claims they were housed in barracks and allowed little contact with other workers. i can see that the east-germans might have been surprised at the large number of 'foreigners' in west-germany, and some east-germans might still have difficulty adjusting to that(there seem to plenty of west-germans having trouble adjusting to that too, even today). since east-germany was very much a closed society, i can understand that people would have great difficulty in adjusting to a society that turned out to be so different than from what they had expected. in a situation like that parties representing both the extreme left and right of a society would turn out to the beneficiaries of dis-satisfied voters - no matter what caused the dissatisfaction in the first place. hbg
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Mar, 2005 06:25 pm
ehBeth wrote:
Quote:
The poll also found that 47 percent of the easterners agree with the statement that the West "acquired the east like a colony," while 58 percent of the westerners back the statement that "easterners tend to wallow in self-pity."

Not so much of a minority that really don't seem to like each other.

Picking off the percentage that want the physical wall back is one thing - but looking at the strong feelings of dislike between the two groups is another.

Can think of several countries where different parts think stuff like that about each other. Look at the South and the North in the US - and they were put back together how many decades ago? Or look at the North of Italy versus the South ...

About half a population in one part of a country subscribing to some resentful stereotype or other about folks in another hardly equates with a case for being better off in separate states altogether - if that were the case, I can think of any number of countries that would be better split into pieces. Italy is a good example actually. North-South resentments and stereotypes are potent enough even to have spawned a rhetorically separatist movement - the League of Lombardy, now Lega Nord - that elected many a mayor and even, ironically, made it into the Italian national government. But still no majority of the Northerners would actually vote for living in a separate country ...

As long as the number of people who say they would actually want to live in separate states again is a small minority - and that's including the flippancy factor, even - I dont think talk of how it might have been better if the two countries hadnt merged in the first place is appropriate. There's a strong sense of the whimsical about these discussions. Of course there are resentments: there's definitely stuff that was done insensitively or unsensibly. Lots of reason to grumble, the past always looks rosy in comparison, and seeing how there's no threat whatsoever of the scenario actually becoming reality, its tempting to entertain oneself in flights of fanciful complaint about, you know, we woulda been better off without 'em - but seriously. There was nothing remotely like a feasible public support for the continued existence of a GDR - just like, even now, those from Sachsen and those from Mecklenburg share little in the ways of common identity apart from the odd grumbling about those darned Wessis.

ehBeth wrote:
There's a difference between thinking it was good for the wall to come done, and thinking those two groups of people would make a comfortable or good mix.

Whats a "comfortable or good mix"? Are African-Americams, Latinos, evangelical Christians and Northeastern liberals a "comfortable mix"? Quebecqians, Ontarians and those out West in Canada? Not much of an argument there.

Personally, I'm amazed, considering the mass unemployment (wasnt it 40%, some time?) thats plagued East-Germany through postcommunism, the massive bankrupcies of the former East-German companies that were either closed altogether or bought up by Wessis who subsequently fired most of the workers, considering the complete reversal of official values, lifestyles, positions in society, self-identifications, everything - the utter insecurity and confusion it must have caused - I'm personally quite surprised / relieved that only one in eight East-Germans want the wall back. I believe it was considerably higher than that some years ago. Most Ossis must have found more than enough compensation in the unified Germany in other ways. As for the Wessis, they complain about the money of course ... but imagine how they would have complained if Kohl had for some reason not succeeded in reunifying Germany.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 02:56 pm
This weekend majorly important elections in the state of North-Rhein Westphalia, the population-richest state of them all ...
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 03:06 pm
This Sunday, I will sit there for a couple of hours and then, after 6 pm, count the votes and later, I'll get frustrated .....

More than 1,400 journalists are accredited, btw, by the state's election office and report from it (live coverage by 13 international tv stations).
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Sun 22 May, 2005 11:40 am
For the results, you may look at any paper

http://www.mainzelahr.de/smile/boese/hang.gif


Historic loss in Northrhine-Westphalia for the SPD
0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

 
Copyright © 2022 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.03 seconds on 05/18/2022 at 09:32:32