The fight for the SPD presidency is only superficially about issues such as GroKo or alleged outsiders versus the establishment. In the background stands the most effective German policy concept of the last decades. No, not bigotry. Although, a little bit: It is the black zero.
The black zero is a symbol of a policy that has been elevated to religion in Germany for a long time by almost all parties. Except for the Left Party in the Confederation, which made every effort not to accidentally get involved in government.
In Berlin a digital and social incomprehensibility is happening. The court martial was attacked in September by malware. Thus one of the most important infrastructures of the constitutional state has been paralyzed. The late damage can hardly be overlooked.
Olaf Scholz stands for the black zero as otherwise only Wolfgang Schäuble and Angela Merkel. A frequently heard justification for decline and resurrection opportunity of the SPD is: Hartz IV. I consider that shortened, who the SPD resents these undoubtedly problematic reforms, has mostly irretrievably left for the Left Party. The decline of the SPD - which is to be stopped by the presidential election - is more closely linked to the policy concept behind the Black Zero: austerity.
The German enthusiasm for it can be guessed by the fact that the debt brake 2009 by CDU and SPD was anchored in the Basic Law. And because Merkel and Schäuble put the austerity on the whole of Europe: A balanced budget has the goal to be and thrift is the way there, so it can be described in a simplified way. But that's just the surface. After all, hiding behind austerity and debt brake is a reversal of politics, the result of a conservative view of the world.
Progressive policy says: We set a goal and get the money for it.
Conservative politics says: We look at how much money there is, and only make policy with it.
There are sensible application scenarios for both types of game, but we live in times of several radical changes in the world, from the oncoming climate catastrophe to digitization. Above all, Black Zero functions as the primacy of fiscal policy over all other ministries.
It often gives the finance ministers the opportunity to say that they do not approve of measures: Sorry, no money. Because the German Austeritäter also believe that one must reduce debts at any price, they can even claim with double-digit billion surpluses, there is no money there. In fact, "reducing debt" can mean pulling so much money off the budget that it's always in short supply.
At the Berlin Court of Appeal, more than one month after the attack on the IT infrastructure of the judiciary, an "emergency operation" is ongoing. Over 500 computers are infected and need to be replaced.
The greatest impudence of the Knights of the Black Zero is their standard reasoning that one should not leave so many debts to future generations. It begins with the presumption of knowing what exactly the coming generations want. If you ask young people concretely, they say: We do not want to drown in Hamburg in 2050 and have already received cell-phone coverage nationwide. The best answer of the boys to the black zero would be: Not ok, Boomer.
The decline of the SPD is mainly due to the fact that since 2005, it has not presented any investment-driven vision of a better future for all, but tried somehow to make Merkel's politics of the present-day administration in a social democratic way. If a Merkel concept comes reddish-colored, it still remains a Merkel concept, ie a policy that first looks at the budget, then artificially reduced and finally conservative politics with the battle cry "No money!" interspersed.
A spokeswoman for the judiciary in Berlin said after the attack: "In order to prevent the spread of the malware, we then removed the entire computer system from the network as a precautionary measure."
In times of change, black zero is a toxic concept. Most of the major problems that people currently face in everyday life in Germany can be directly or indirectly attributed to fiscal policy. The bitter state of Deutsche Bahn, for example, with a rehabilitation backlog of nearly 60 billion euros. Or the extreme increase in rents in cities.
True, the truth is that the immigration pull in an attractive city like Berlin necessarily fuels the market. But that could have been mitigated, for example with social housing. Instead, they have subjected the housing policy of the Black Zero, sold state-owned companies at a ridiculous price and partly reduced state housing investment drastically. If the SPD, as in Berlin feels governed 60 years and the rents explode - one believes the party is no longer, to really work for people in disarray.
At the Berlin Court of Appeal important documents must be copied or faxed. The already overburdened Berlin court suffered from this "under difficult conditions," as even the otherwise dismissing Justice Senator must admit.
Nationwide is bad - especially the result of budgetary policy - the infrastructure. The schools have a rehabilitation backlog of over 40 billion euros. And renovation is not necessarily an investment, but only the preservation of the substance. The digital infrastructure in Germany is a disaster and worse, it also remains a disaster. Because the Knights of the Black Zero and their leader Angela Merkel are delaying, obstructing and destroying the necessary state investment.
Also, the digital administration and adjacent services is at a miserable level. A survey by the EU Commission sees Germany far behind in terms of the use of digital forms in the third last place in the EU, in the use of digital health services on the penultimate. Or education: In Denmark, 91 percent of students use digital media in class every day. 4 percent in Germany. As well as when hardly 30 percent of schools have an acceptable internet connection.
Such states exist across society. Germany lives at the expense of its substance built in the 20th century. That will not be alright for long. Or better: It has long been catastrophic in many areas. In Munich, sick children are often taken to Garmisch-Partenkirchen, which is almost 100 kilometers away. The Munich children's hospitals are dramatically understaffed - because nurses can no longer afford to live there.
In view of this maladministration, the Munich SPD has taken a pronounced Olaf-Scholz-hafte, debt-brake-friendly measure: nursing staff may now use residents' car parks for home visits. Sounds okay okay socially - but costs nothing. So you do not have to change anything, invest nothing, do not think about the fatal black zero.
As the Tagesspiegel reports , the IT disaster at the Berlin Court of Appeals came with an announcement. An IT consulting firm issued a strong warning in 2017: "Unsupported software and operating systems are a serious security risk, so please do not wait any longer, budget and support a comprehensive transformation program." That did not happen because there was no money or expert staff to thank Black Zero. The malware was also successful because a major program at the Supreme Court based on Windows 95 and Word 95. That's because it came on the market in 1995. In 2001, Microsoft discontinued any support for this software.