(Work and family; 01-02; p.2)
Assuming that there is more to it than just
election-foreplay, politicians are about to decide on two fundamental
areas of society: firstly on the question whether profits should
also be transferred to people not participating in making them,
secondly on how parents should be compensated for raising their
These areas are fundamental from a sociological-functional point
of view as well as from a juridical. Applying the categories of
the sociologist T. Parsons, one finds that the political sub-system
decides on goals of political action concerning the economical
and integrative sub-systems. Solicitors and barristers do know
the formulas of the German basic law - equivalent to a constitution
- stating in article 6 that the family is distinctively protected
by the state's institutions and stating in article 20 that Germany
is a social federal state.
From a political scientist's point of view, the interesting question
occurs which goals of political action are discussed by which
actors within what a framework.
The situation around the topic of unemployment
may be characterised by the following:
• since the 1980s the federal unemployment rates are floating
between five and ten percent while there is a growing shortage
of some specific professionals;
• within the same time-span productivity is rising steadily, i.e.
products and services are made and offered with a respective smaller
amount of work while growth, i.e. the value of additionally produced
wares and offered services compared to former periods is relatively
• within the same time-span quotas of real wages, i.e. the percentage
of pay and salaries in regard to the value of products and services
in real prices are stagnating while profits are developing unevenly.
(read on here)