or – how do things continue after the elections in the UK –
and how do they go on particularly here on the continent – three and a half months before the elections to the Bundestag in Germany?
Jeremy Corbyn and Labour have written history. And – they’ve shown a lot:
You can win elections, if you don’t only point with your fingers at the stinky subjects but
address the real matters. And when you address them in a credible way and are ready to fight for the people –
and go for really social democratic balances of interests.
You can lead debates regarding “justice” and a more balanced “shared economy”
facing the urgent challenges of present times and that way can start uniting
splintered societies lacking any solidarity again.
In addition to that JC has refuted another crucial doctrine of “Neoliberalism” as
“inverse and stupid Socialism – making all humans down to earth equal”:
“Everyone can be replaced.”
No way – his experience, his resilience, his authenticity and his solid stand with his feet on the ground –
his charisma he has gained over the years have decided the elections.
That way he has braked the “global pathway towards the new splintered
(post-post-) modern feudal state” and maybe he has also set up a deviation.
In a similar way now some even say loud, that Bernie Sanders definitely had
And there again the Social Democrats in Germany have watched the things silently –
Does the German Social Democracy lack any courage or – is it just simply the paralyzed
functionary spirit? “The Goalie's Anxiety at the Penalty Kick” – or – some provincial way of
“hillbilly thinking”, sold to the people – the “cast system of the establishment” –
The “Brexit” – and the own bigotry – the multiply debunked lack of credibility covered with
a thin blanket of arrogance might soon break the Tories into pieces.
hazards some prophecies pointing into that direction. But he also emphasizes,
that the labour must go on – that it now even just might really start.
But – also Labour these days isn’t completely callous regarding that.
And – once more the question – what is it about on the continent –
in Germany this summer in front of the elections?
One of the smartest analytics regarding many subjects in that context,
Manfred Hulverscheidt from Berlin says:
And that gives progressive – or “left” forces on the continent even more responsibility.
People are scared of war and riots.
They are also afraid of revolution and the “Jacobinic excesses” meanwhile and in the aftermath.
Theresa May and the Tories now will try some games with Lady Macbeth’s dagger.
But in a globalized world, where many borders – also between private and public space
have been shifted many rules of the “elites in power” have only limited validity.
And Lady Macbeth debunks herself easily in the public eye. Also when she meets the three witches
and they try to encourage each other they aren’t unobserved at all.
Hamlet’s smartness and sophistication – coupled with “The Elegance of the Hedgehog” and the
clever instinct of other hairy or stingy friends – also “natural enemies” of men –
these are the answers, Corbyn and others still can make points with.
Also in Germany Schäuble serves some of the “demographic majority’s” deepest archaic fears
with his “black zero” – the German version of austerity. Cosmetics lacking any concept regarding
those corner posts of neo-conservative policy done by the great coalition partner though open up
widely the doors for a new term for Merkel in autumn 2017.
Some – quite many media in Germany still talk about a “shift to the left” of the Christian Democrats
under Merkel. Many charades of the woman with the folded hands in the shape of a rhombus –
the queen of sitting out all urgent problems – also the “castling”, which then characterized the
“German refugee crisis” could cause that superficial impression. In the aftermath
“in the back office” then soon laws were enacted, which rather cause the impression of the CDU
shifting towards the right. The right for political asylum is just one example out of many.
The privatization of highways recently – the increasing privatization of education –
the most important – the only resource, Germany owns – the “constitutional state” is being exploited
more and more – and finally it’s just eliminated. Through the back-door. “Privatized” .
And the great coalition partner – the Social Democrats are just watching it?
Or are they even nodding?
Also the French Revolution didn’t take place just on one day in 1789.
Also then there was a long premise with multiple struggles –
before, during and particularly after the revolution.
“Structural change” – concepts of how to tackle the consequences of the 1st up to the 4th
industrial revolution – finally public debates are required for giving hope and
perspectives to the people – for making them participate at essential
matters and developments.
For enlightening and for integrating many instead of discouraging them.
And for shooting at others a bit further outside. And mostly hitting the wrong ones.
Security and resilience are working another way then with a “war against terror” running amok.
There some more smartness is required. Here as much as anywhere else.
The terms – globalization, digitalization and many others need to be filled with positive
connotations – giving perspectives and hope to many more -
and not for increasingly few people.
Driving the elites and their games in front of us.
Playing the main role in their games lately.
For increasingly more – not for always fewer people.
Labour there has taken a strong pragmatic line. They’ve worked out a social democratic agenda
quite accurately in a country, that can be called a pioneer of what is named “Neoliberalism” in a
“post-factual and post-democratic way”.
In seven years of hard opposition work they clearly distanced themselves from “New Labour“
and Tony Blair, the closest Bush comrade at the Iraq assault in 2003. And Blair had deformed
“New Labour” for many of their voter base in deeply class-oriented Britain towards “Tories in Red“.
Austerity, the demolition of the welfare state, the expansive inflation of the financial industry
and the decrease of jobs in “real economy” and by that the downstream of many “working class heroes” –
“New Labour” had quite a big share of responsibility in all that.
Jeremy Corbyn’s speeches at demonstrations against the Iraq invasion back then – his power of
endurance and a very concise programmatic, always presented in a credible and authentic way helped
him at the youngest elections for Labour leadership to arrive at the highest results of agreement,
a party leader ever could achieve in the UK.
Seven years of hard opposition work confronting the Tories – facing David Cameron and now then
Theresa May insofar also enabled Labour to build up a new – a much more feisty profile.
“For the many – not the few“ – that doesn’t end up there with hollow slogans. In the course of
Labour’s election campaign under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership that has been
elaborated quite profoundly and concisely in uncountable trailers.
Social media then helped spreading those messages.
Also immediately crossing the Channel to Continental Europe.
Labour’s success now – more than a “hung parliament” – the loss of the absolute majority
for the Tories - actually all parties left of the centre on the continent might have a reason to celebrate.
Particularly in Germany about three and a half months before the elections to our parliament here -
the Bundestag. And - some might even proclaim, that the “shift to the right” – and definitely –
all the defeatism and kill-joy in Europe now are over. That progressive forces are gaining strength again.
And so on.
It’s definitely “Human – All too Human” to rejoice in the luck of others. And wanting to share that luck as much.
“Post-democratic and post-factual” Neoliberalism creates its own images of values. Everything has a
kind of value, what I can exploit by buying it. Thus – it enriches my personality somehow –
one way or the other. Insofar people also like to adorn themselves with borrowed plumes.
It’s actually only just and equitable. Thus some left of the centre on the European continent – particularly
in Germany soon will gloat over the “creation of a new idea of the European left”.
In “post-enlightenment” Neoliberalism people often like to compare apples with pairs.
The “smartest” ones then even might praise the red fruit soon then as the finest tomatoes.
“Pecunia non olet“ – “Money doesn’t smell badly” – the first soundbite of Neoliberalism, which only respects
pecuniary creation of value. Particularly in “late Roman decadency” –
the decay of overcome images of the world.
As a little boy I once on a barbecue listened devoutly to the song of an elderly neighbour.
I was quite impressed by the rascal inventiveness of grown-ups – those people, who seemed to be so
different from us little humans back then:
“Up there on the hilltop there’s a cardboard box where the dwarfs are making candies from shit.”
Labour in the UK has built up a determined programmatic. One that polarises. And that also
is quite capable to hurt those, who don’t like that at all. A programmatic, which intends to build up
new possibilities for balancing things out – for creating more justice in a deeply slotted society.
That is the fine – but decisive difference though: That didn’t happen particularly not in Germany –
and particularly not in favour of Social Democracy so far. And that’s also the main reason, why voters
still deeply mistrust Social Democrats in the confederation.
The last Social Democratic Chancellor Gerhard Schröder in fact didn’t participate into the assault on Iraq
and had a French ally with Chirac back then.
But a serious reckoning with the consequences of the “Agenda 2010” never has taken place in the SPD.
The “inverted socialism” still continues – despite the “lack of skilled craftsmen” many people are deselected
on “free markets”, who spent a lot of money for their education, who worked for decades and who have paid
their contributions into an increasingly splintered welfare system. People, who that way definitely will be sent
into poverty amongst the elderly. And their families end up with them in a complete lack of any chances –
the pitfalls of “neoliberal lack of any alternatives”. A fate, more and more people on “free low-wage markets” are
exposed to. Because the “individual fate” on these “markets” always is represented as “self-inflicted”.
The single individual just forges his or her own destiny.
Everything “lacking any alternatives”. Social Democrats avoid any kind of reckoning with these subjects,
which have destroyed a lot of solidarity in society in quite not an unintentional way like the plague.
And they didn’t allow serious programmatic discourses regarding a renunciation from that policy of
splintering solidarity in Germany and Europe at all to arise.
The more they looked the other way. Sweeping the debris under the carpet.
Also the war deployments of the German army – an “adventurous NATO-foreign policy” hasn`t
been reclaimed at all. There they also prevent any deeper confrontation with the debris.
And that way just thinking about “rebuilding” becomes impossible.
The Afghanistan mission there is the feather that brakes the balance.
“Post-factual” disinformation policy regarding the country and its people and missed chances for
“a sustainable Peace mission and rebuilding of the war-torn country” – all that is covered by a naïve
and unilateral “refugee policy”, which though by the end of the day just splinters society even more
and plays off one group against the other. Soon then also refugees against Germans on welfare back
down to earth, where there aren`t any alternatives – for example then regarding the housing and job markets
in “attractive cities and regions” with high rents and multiple offers for low-wages-jobs. And not only there.
They almost didn’t debate about any “alternatives to the war against terror”.
A kind of war, nobody can win. A kind of war, we can only rebuild with resilient smartness towards a
fight for freedom and human rights of a growing number of people against some few.
In Afghanistan in 2009 / 10 I managed a pilot project in a British-American “NGO”, which not only for
this country was kind of unique. A project though, which could potentially also cause a paradigm
change regarding “development collaboration” between Global North and South. A project, which
insofar connecting “sustainable, decentralized water management”, Slum regeneration of part of
Kabul’s Old Town – thus of urban planning and cultural history offered an enormous chance for
the country and its people – for the whole region.
President Karsai and His Royal Highness, the Prince of Wales were the patrons of the “NGO”.
From the very beginning I asked the young management to enable the constitution of a
governmental commission, which should enable “rudimentary building laws”: (weak) common
welfare there should legally be protected by the means of singular case studies and should be
evaluated higher than (strong) private interests of landlords and “potential warlords”.
And that way means of compensation between weak public weal and strong private interests
should be created by legislation. Only that way an urban water management could be enabled –
decisive reasons for war and conflict and their consequences could be tackled.
And the low scale and low tech project could be transferred to any other place
in the city and the whole country.
The young management of the “Non Governmental Organisation” never wanted and never could accomplish that.
Insofar I needed to bring the project by many manoeuvres and red herrings to implementation –
up to the famous moment of “breaking ground”.
Once the founder of the NGO, who some years ago had been commissioned by HRH the Prince and soon then
became an MP for the Tories was there, when I needed to gain some air and some space for continuing my work.
Then also following Naomi Klein*s “Shock-strategy” I said.
” What do you actually think, who we Germans are? We’ve been the most cruel fascists as Nazis,
the most severe communists as stasi-spies and also as Neoliberals we’re just the most accurate ones!”
Lately I needed to make a completely new survey of the roundabout 4 hectares, 9,6 acres of Old Town slum.
Perhaps the most accurate site survey, that ever hasa been made at Kabul and surroundings.
And a very good school for “my architects and engineers” – and some unskilled , but smart boys
with basic school education but awake spirit.
New standards require a lot of money for the first investment. Money, which though is really worth
its investment, when the rebuilding process further on is managed in a smart way. When that way
“change by fair trade and harmonization” and “help for helping themselves at the place of origin of refugees”
The needed loan guarantees though from the World Bank failed. The paradigm change towards
a systematic rebuilding process – towards more security for the country and its people also failed.
And my “demission” on July, 1st 2010 brought me back to a country, where many people still didn`t hear
a lot of the shootings outside – in not that remote countries. And where they also don’t want to hear
anything from that.
And – of course: after a while I landed at welfare. Self-inflicted – of course.
Also having a job now I’m still a potential candidate for old-age poverty. And my family with me.
A trailer for a left-wing-party like the one made by Ken Loach, where many-voiced
in a highly expressive way demands for social justice – and recognition of hard and
good labour are brought forward. Demands for democratic control of services of general interest
in sharply drawn profiles culminate in the words of a young girl:
Without seriously confronting the consequences particularly also of their own governmental policy
Social Democrats in Germany won’t be able to get into a real “debate about social justice”.
For the majority of voters they still will be unreliable.
38 years after the first governmental term of the “Iron Lady of lack of alternatives”
Magaret Thatcher British citizens for the first time had a real choice again.
They took their chance.
It will be very difficult for Jeremy Corbyn and Labour.
Also with the Scottish Nationalists of SNP and Lib Dems as coalition partners.
Uniting a country – refloating a ship, that has run on ground – that’s hard labour.
Creating jobs that give us a LIVELIHOOD
and even more – that safeguard possibilities for PARTICIPATING AND WORKING TOGETHER
AT PUBLICLY AND GLOBALLY relevant matters is the key.
A new definition of “wage labour” and INCOME is another essential element of that rebuilding process.
A reconstruction, that can only be successful as a “Pan-European development”.
“Brexit” – whether or not you like it.
A rebuilding process, that can only succeed with efforts from all sides – also the corporations –
“the few, who just oppose the many” – and their readiness to encourage public welfare in a
sustainable way by paying higher taxes and more long-term engagement.
Elections nowadays are won by those, who are able to mobilise the peevish – people, who
scarcely still believe into change – into possibilities for new perspectives.
For the people mostly it’s not about “right or left” – it’s rather about “bottom or top”.
About chances for participation and development of public and private being and becoming.
If that article I wrote mostly on Pentecost-weekend stays “wishful thinking” or becomes an
encouraging one – we’ll soon have to face it.
Hope is a tender and rather fluffy thistle trying to find its way towards the light in puddles
with oily smears between rusty tracks in a wavy discarded paving.
The people in the UK sense some more courage and hope again.
Continental Europe – we could turn the “Brexit” to become a footnote in history.
Or – we should move our governments into that direction.
When you’re the only German in a predominantly British enterprise living and working
at a fragile place like Kabul’s Old Town eventually sooner or later some “national attitudes” might come up.
Germans and the British always had their difficulties.
Another good friend there – himself in his younger roots half from Britain, half Sri Lankan always said to me,
when I was ranting over the “Brits”:
“Come on, Stef’ – it’s not about Germans, Afghans or Brits. It’s always about people!”
And it’s finally also on us to demand for the many, not the few with one voice,
that WE finally get the chance to BECOME all that WE CAN be.
Or - when do Social Democratic comrades in Germany finally take notice of things moving?
Düsseldorf, Germany, June 9th, 2017