Anything is possible in German politics

… or so it would seem.  After the recent general elections (Bundestagswahl) we can expect to have a so-called “black and yellow coalition” in power.

The colours refer to the CDU and FDP parties, who are not actually so far apart in many of their policies, but still have a lot of debating to do until they agree on everything.

What worried me a little bit was a comment that I heard on the radio a few days ago, that “all topics are open to discussion”.  I would have expected that some topics did not need to be discussed, and it reminded me of the last round of coalition talks 4 years ago, where the CDU and SPD discussed raising the VAT rate.  One party wanted to raise it by 1%, the other did not want to raise it at all, and in the end they agreed on 3%!

Over the next few weeks the parties – including the CSU as well – will thrash out their policies and come up with a contract by which they will theoretically govern the country for the next 4 years.  I am wondering how much they will undo the work of the previous CDU/SPD coalition, and in particular how many policies will be agreed upon, that neither party had in their manifesto during the election campaign.

Scrapping the Gesundheitsfond would be a good start…

Truly German – Episode 02 – 14th August 2009

Truly German is a new podcast that talks about the news in Germany.  Sometimes this will by national news, maybe political, but we will also be covering some local topics.

We want to have some fun at the same time, so part of the podcast is our Länderquiz – in which my contestant has to guess in which Bundesland three different news stories took place in.

This week the topics are:

  1. Michael Schumacher cancels his comeback
  2. Merkel and Steinmeier to stage TV duel
  3. U55 in Berlin

The quiz covers the following stories:

  1. Runneburg tower to be repaired
  2. Customs officials confiscate 360 lollies
  3. HDTV to start in Germany

Please listen to the second episode and tell us what you think:

(Press the “play” button to listen to the podcast)

Download the MP3 file

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