If you frequent these pages, you’re well acquainted with how I like to characterize Angela Merkel.
She is, put very simply, Western democracy’s last line of defense against a semi-global populist uprising that threatens to undercut the very foundation on which the West’s politics and economics rest.
I know, I know… “We need a reset, Heisenberg!” “The system is flawed!” “The bureaucracies must go!” “The powers that be are out to keep the downtrodden masses underfoot!”
Or, as one guy who now lives in your microwave once put it…
Yes, “a conspiracy of global elites” who, oddly enough, have seemingly made effecting a 50%+ increase in the real incomes for entire emerging market populations part of their nefarious agenda to keep poor people poor…
“Yes, Heisenberg, but look at the stagnation that chart shows for advanced economy middle class workers!” Do you think maybe that has anything to do with not adapting to a globalized supply chain that rendered American manufacturing obsolete? And also, too goddamn bad. The “poor” advanced economy middle class has had to “eke out a living” on a stagnant wage that’s still exponentially higher than anyone in EM is getting paid even after the massive increase in real incomes you see depicted in the chart above.
Anyway, the Donald Trumps, Marine Le Pens, Frauke Petrys, Geert Wilders’s, and Nigel Farages of the world want you to believe they’ve got the solution to your problems and that solution centers around xenophobia, nationalism, tribalism, and a rollback of globalization, progressivism, and multiculturalism.
Part and parcel of that whole bullsh*t narrative is the idea that the influx of refugees into Europe was met with a massive increase in all manner of violent crime (you know, raping, pillaging, poolside ass-grabbing, the whole Viking nine yards). Remember what happened in Sweden? And there’s no way – no way – that terrorist attacks would have unfolded in Paris and Brussels had all those refugees not been let in the door. [That’s sarcasm]
Well, one popular populist punching bag is Angela Merkel, who thought being compassionate and trying to save the lives of some 850,000 people fleeing violence in the war-torn Mid-East was probably the right thing to do. And it was. Only not in the eyes of large swaths of the European electorate who have been duped and whipped into a veritable frenzy by these despicable f*ckers:
Of course sane people understand what’s going on here and how dangerous it is. And as I never tire of reminding readers, a whole lot of the people pushing this agenda know damn well how bad it is too. But those folks also know something else. Namely that uneducated and disaffected people are vulnerable to manipulation. And that vulnerability can be exploited for political and monetary gain. So the question is: are you being exploited?
Well, in yet another testament to just how poisonous this agenda truly is and also to just how much reputational damage Steve Bannon has already done, consider the following headline from Politico:
Hopefully you get the (dark) humor.
Here are excerpts from the piece which someone will write off as “fake news”…
This time the media hype surrounding a White House meeting is no wild exaggeration. When President Donald Trump and German Chancellor Angela Merkel finally get together on Friday, the leaders of the West’s two most powerful countries are sure to come off more like an odd couple than two close allies chewing over plans for some joint enterprise. And for good reason. Merkel and Trump are not only polar opposites as people, but they share little in terms of international outlook.
Their styles reflect their vastly different backgrounds. Merkel, Germany’s first and only female chancellor, was raised by a pastor in communist East Germany, where she earned a doctorate in physical chemistry. Although she is the longest-serving and most powerful leader in Europe, she is unfailingly modest, competent and consensus-oriented. Trump’s all-about-me mentality, Queens upbringing and brash, tabloid-and-reality-TV personality couldn’t be more different.
The contrast in substance is just as stark. From the Eurozone meltdown to the refugee surge, Merkel has been through multiple crises. She has no illusions about Vladimir Putin and the spy-ridden Kremlin team running Russia, and places a high value on quiet diplomacy, free trade, international law and the institutions of the European Union.
Trump is untested, unable or unwilling to criticize Russia’s invasion of neighboring Ukraine, determined to judge U.S. foreign policies by the trade balance involved or the extent to which the costs of U.S. military deployments are reimbursed, and happy to talk up the possibility of other EU countries following Britain out the door.
Behind the scenes, however, the evolution of the Trump-Merkel dialogue will shape the direction and strength of the Western alliance. While Merkel has resisted the label of defender of Western values, the fact is she was the only leader prepared to play a form of hardball with the new president. By saying that Germany would work with America based on shared values (the rule of law, tolerance and equal rights), she became the de facto leader of those determined to defend those values. And this was done at the same time British Prime Minister Theresa May was rushing off to Washington to be the first European leader to meet with Trump.
The German chancellor is the only leader in Europe who even has a plausible claim to moral leadership. As a victim of Soviet communism, Merkel was always going to be listened to carefully on the question of morality. And given her longevity she was always going to be respected. But it was her unexpected decision to accept some 1 million refugees that established her moral credentials, especially since no other political leader has taken such a political risk.