Saturday, April 30, 2016

Waiting for the Fat Lady

If you follow German political talk, journalist rants, and public discussion forums on state-run TV in Germany....they are in the midst of a waiting game on the AfD Party.  The enthusiasm will hit some maximum point, deflation will occur, and the public comes back to the normal parties.  Frauke Petry (their current leader), Bjorn Hocke (their oddball guy of charisma), and the rest will walk back into an empty room and ask how they failed.

There are political meetings every month for the CDU (right-leaners) and SPD (left-wingers) who form the current government.  They closely watch the polls....look at the next state elections....and mostly sweat over the impending loss of another percentage point.

Focus (the German news magazine) had a brief piece covering three separate newspapers in Germany....which hyped the soon-to-come collapse of the AfD and it's public support. The Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung, Stuttgarter Nachrichten, and the Magdeburg People's Voice....all plant the story that the collapse of support will come shortly.

The problem I see is that everything revolves around immigration, asylum, integration and refugees.  Presently, Germany has convinced the EU to pay three billion Euro to Turkey to shut down the trail through Greece.  What no one has really said in a clear way is that it's three billion Euro a year, and as long as the civil war goes on in Syria.....you'd have to pay the Turks to keep this gimmick going.  And you can't be sure for 2017...if the Turks want to double the money or not (something not to bring up with SPD or CDU member).

Presently, all the AfD can do is own one complete topic.  Let's say this July arrives and Greece is mostly bankrupt again, and wants more money (oddly, this scenario appears to be playing out if you read business journals and news).  What if the AfD stakes out an anti-Greece payout position, and Germans flock to that situation too?

Basically.....all the AfD folks have done is figure out the slant to the five basic political parties (strangely enough, they won't really be creative anymore and be opposites in character),

Whatever they lean toward.....all the AfD has to do is lean the opposite way.  They know at least ten to twenty percent of the population will go their direction.  It's like setting up a stand on a really hot day and selling high-boozy cocktails with ice, for an outrageous price.....people will buy it.

Forty years ago.....some German old-thinker political guys would have stood up with the SPD or CDU and slammed their fist down on the table and said they would take an opposition position....to win voters.  Today?  I think all of these guys are handcuffed to the news media and intellectuals....just hoping that some end will come to the AfD situation.

Meanwhile, out in the heartland (beyond the vision of Berlin).....all of these mayors, police chiefs and city councils are sitting in some freaked worry over another New Year's Eve riot....like the Koln episode.  No one can afford to let another such incident occur.  Individual cops have to be standing there in the midst of some urban zone.....continually questioning what they see and whether to call an "all-alert-emergency" to bring 100 cops on duty to one point to settle things in a hurry.

Then every single week passes, and the deflation of the AfD fails to happen.  This week, they all had to sit there and view Austria.....where the far-right party got an amazing thirty-five percent of the vote.  A year ago....journalists would have laughed if you'd suggested that the two popular parties (the center-left and center-right) would get a combined 22-percent of the vote.

Yeah, there ought to be some fat lady in the shadows, prepared to sing.  Logic would dictate that.  But no one will end the immigration or integration episode, and confidence is dismal among German voters on how this will all end.

It may be a very long wait.

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