The myth of national sovereignty helps big corporations screw us over. Thomas Piketty

Merkel or THE LEFT

A policy of cutbacks, isolationism, arms build-up. Obama, Pope, Panda bear. Angela Merkel is campaigning with backwards policies and beautiful pictures. The direction is called “More of the same!”

The Christian Democrats are promoting the slogan “A Germany we love to live in and enjoy". “We” can be translated as "nothing is given to those at the very bottom, we are not taking anything from those at the top. On the contrary: On the one hand, top earners still get what it takes, and the heirs of obscene assets are spared altogether. On the other hand, those people are not benefiting from tax breaks who are too poor to be taxed anyway, and citizens on social welfare, the so called “Hartz IV”, have other concerns than those of real estate financing.

The Christian Democrats fail to present a pension plan, old-age poverty remains a great concern for the future. In short: “We” starts with the Upper Middle Class, the gap between the rich and the poor will open up further. In all this, a “Germany first” attitude resonates as well. During the funeral ceremony for former German chancellor, Helmut Kohl, the former Prime Minister of Spain, Felipe González, paid tribute to Kohl because he envisioned a united Germany, not a German Europe. The Christian Democrats are on the verge forfeiting Kohl’s legacy. Their program is neither Christian nor social. Merkel’s policies are “lacking direction”, Kohl had once remarked.

Election program equals the square of the circle

Finance proposals are hard to find. Both parties with the big “C” that stands for Christian in their titles are boasting to forego tax increases. CDU Vice-President Julia Klöckner emphasizes: “We do not rely on redistribution … but we want prosperity and security for all”. Thus the squaring of the circle becomes the program. The allegedly ambitious goal of halving unemployment by 2025 is a bluff package: many developments are pointing this way anyway. That is why Seehofer welcomes the “Skilled Employee Immigration Act” which is useful for the Bavarian economy.

On the other hand, so-called full employment does not help those who are in precarious employment and / or fixed-term contracts. The celebrated tale of declining unemployment is disguising the fact that millions of good, decently rewarded, and jobs that are subject to social insurance contributions, are missing. In many cases, the paper presented is aimed at correcting past errors and omissions. If the federal government and the states are to recruit 15,000 extra policemen, it is important to recall that in the Federal Republic of Germany some 17,000 police jobs have been removed since 1998. In housing construction, hard to afford promises are made. Approximately five million council estates are missing. Despite a rise in numbers of newly constructed buildings, more than 200,000 council estates have been dismantled in the past four years.

The Christian Democrats and the Constitution

The conduct of the chancellor and the Christian Democratic Union raises questions about their understanding of democracy. The program was created under the guidance of head of the chancellery Peter Altmaier, which is why it is also called the “government program”. The party base remained excluded.

Anyone who sees an alternative to democracy for Germany and finds it in nationalism, right wing populism and racism should not be a member of the German Parliament. All other prospective applicants appear to be in competition with who can sit as a future coalition partner on Merkel’s lap. With one exception: THE LEFT. Only we are ready to deal with the actual powerful in the country to achieve a redistribution of wealth in favor of social justice. In privatization we see an attack on social human rights and believe that profitability doesn’t go well with public health and affordable housing. We want to turn Germany into world champion of disarmament, make weapon exports into war zones illegal, and want to bring home our soldiers from foreign operations. Alas, on election night of September 24th you can either vote for THE LEFT or chose a center-right block. Chose between progress and more of the same.

Read more in this debate: John Malcolm Watts, Jean-Claude Juncker, Dietmar Bartsch.

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