(Staff; 11/12-03; p.2)
The politically interested public had to face
three decisions about staff at the year’s end that rather count
as provincial farces. Since at least two of the ones fired had
a prominent role, they were more.
First one is linked to the Hamburgian ex-senator
R Schill – Hamburg is a two million metropolis as well as one
of Germany’s federal states; governors are called senators. The
right-wing populist had been responsible for the fact that Hamburg’s
government had more time to spend on his personal matters and
affairs lately than on fulfilling their citizens’ mandate. Not
only because there were unbridgeable differences between him and
the city’s first mayor, O von Beust, the mayor dissolved the ruling
coalition of his party, the Christian Democrats with the Liberals
and Schill’s party. Elections now will take place sometime in
What remains of Mr Schill’s tenure? – Well, the police should
have become new uniforms and a local yellow press had been able
to produce some headlines.
Two other decisions are about a federal MP elected
in a Hessian province, M Hohmann and about an army officer already
fired. Both took advantage of a long standing feature in Germany’s
changing society, xenophobia.
The evilness of such a technique lies in denouncing
a minority for all insecurity and possible or just perceived depravations
in a society. The minority chosen has to meet several conditions:
it’s got to be big enough to be made plausibly responsible for
all fault-lines; secondly, it’s got to be small enough to ensure
that no-one blamed is among one’s friends or relatives. If the
so fenced-off (or formerly: fenced-in) have a history of stigmatisation,
they are prone to become scape-goats.
Real cause-effect relations, be it about economic mechanisms or
the production of perceptions, this way are left unmentioned or
re-interpreted by a technique just depicted. It was the corner
stone of success for the Weimar Republic Conservative Revolution
as well as for the New Right in Europe or the once more upcoming
militias in the US.
[Original German article closes with some literature remarks and
an internal link to a satire on Germany’s higher education system.
For the latter draws on very recent ongoings and you’ll need an
understanding of the situation, it is omitted here.]
(end of article)