Germany Needs Another Policy:
Why I Am Campaigning for Chancellor
by Helga Zepp-LaRouche
What is the majority? The majority is nonsense;
Reason requires the efforts of a few.
Does a man who has nothing care about society as a whole?
Does the beggar have freedom, a choice?
To buy his bread and shoes,
He has to sell his vote to the powerful.
Votes should be weighed, not counted.
Sooner or later, the state will be wrecked
In which majority rules, and ignorance decides.
—Friedrich Schiller, Demetrius
Act I, Scene 1, Saphieha
If Germany is to be spared a catastrophic future, we urgently need a fundamental policy change. Although the crisis was caused by the rules of the game of globalization, a system which is completely destroyed, and today is even more bankrupt than the G.D.R. [East Germany] was in November 1989, we only make the situation worse if we continue to subject ourselves to these rules, as the parties that serve in the Bundestag have all been doing, not least in that they voted for the package to bail out the banks' toxic waste.
I am campaigning as a Chancellor candidate because Germany has fallen into the hands of robbers, and citizens feel that there is really nobody to turn to. I am campaigning, because there is a way out.
Why the EU Doesn't Function
However, we have to start out with a realistic assessment of the situation. If we look at the strategic constellation of power in the world, we must, unfortunately, admit that neither Germany nor Europe are decisive factors, when it comes to possible initiatives to solve the crisis. Essentially, we have the policy of Margaret Thatcher, François Mitterrand, and George Bush, Sr. to thank for the fact that Germany, as the price for agreement to its reunification, was forced to give up the deutschemark, and, with it, sovereignty over its currency, and to subject itself to the European Monetary Union and the dictates of the Maastricht Treaty.
But the treaties of Maastricht, Amsterdam, and Nice, as well as the Stability Pact, have had predominantly negative consequences for the other member states of the EU as well. Because the EU Commission, with its dyed-in-the-wool liberal free-trade policy, follows the demands of the City of London absolutely, and therefore also adheres to the paradigm that is responsible for the crisis. The fact that London wants to define Europe's policies, while refusing to tip its own hand to Brussels, is standard operating procedure for the British Empire.
The nations of Europe have bound and gagged themselves with the Maastricht criteria and the Stability Pact, preventing them from generating state credit for productive investment, and thereby creating unnecessarily high unemployment over a long period of time. There is no question that there was enough money in the till, given that three-digit billions were handed out to the banks and speculators; it's just laughable that they couldn't scrape together the EU 2 or 3 billion needed to build the Transrapid maglev line in Munich.
Meanwhile, the financial crisis has demonstrated the unworkability of this restrictive policy. A great many of the free market's sacred cows were meanwhile slaughtered, yet this failed to stop the free fall of the real economy: Banks were nationalized, stimulus programs were released, rescue parachutes were opened, economic improvement packages were cobbled together, "Bad Banks" were set up, and so forth. All these measures were resorted to by the national governments, not by Brussels.
But as long as the European nations are laced up in the corset that started with all the EU treaties since Maastricht, they deprive themselves of the ways and means to determine their own fates. About 85% of all laws have been made in Brussels for quite some time, rather than in the national capitals. The extent to which the members of the Bundestag see themselves as vassals of an empire, was vividly shown by the April 24, 2008 vote, in which 515 deputies supported a so-called accompanying law "On Extending and Strengthening the Rights of the Bundestag and Bundesrat in European Union Matters," which, far from strengthening these rights, handed them over to Brussels. It took the Federal Constitutional Court's ruling in Karlsruhe on June 30, 2009, to declare the unconstitutionality of this law passed by the Bundestag, and to force the Bundestag to reformulate it! What are we to think about parliamentarians who take their most important function so lightly, namely their duty to represent the people, as spelled out in Article 38 of the Basic Law, that they relinquish it to a supranational bureaucracy that is not accountable to a single voter?
We are in the midst of a breakdown crisis that has the immediate potential to become the worst crisis in the history of mankind. No solution initiated by Europe can be expected, as long as the governments have surrendered sovereign control over their currencies to an independent European Central Bank, which is, meanwhile, doing just what the Fed and the Bank of England are doing: "quantitative easing"—i.e., "printing money"—and buying up toxic waste. The ECB is strongly committed to Brussels' neoliberal paradigm.
As Chancellor, I would advocate a strong Europe of sovereign republics, which would act jointly to achieve the common aims of mankind.
Who Could Push Through a New Financial Structure?
Therefore, where could an effective initiative come from, to solve the crisis? The most recent conferences of the G8, G20, and the BRIC [Brazil, Russia, India, China—ed.] demonstrated that these combinations of states are simply incapable of working out a solution.
Therefore, despite all the obvious difficulties, Lyndon LaRouche's proposal remains the only solution: that only the four largest nations in the world, namely the U.S.A., Russia, China, and India, could jointly place on the agenda the implementation of a new financial architecture, a New Bretton Woods system, which other sovereign nations could then join. No other combination of states has enough power or the political will to take on the international financial oligarchy. There is very simple proof of this thesis: Despite all the conferences of the G8, G20, and BRIC, the casino economy continues to expand, even though, since the end of July 2007, the collapse has been escalating non-stop. In spite of the enormous declines in the real economy worldwide, nothing has changed; the securitization market, the hedge funds, innovative financial instruments, tax havens, high-risk deals—it's all continuing just as before. Obviously, the governments lack either the power or the will to tackle these financial interests.
The outcome of the conflict in the U.S.A. will mainly determine whether cooperation of the four above-mentioned states will occur. Although 48 of the 50 states in the U.S.A. are effectively insolvent, and the immediate danger exists that the state governments will become dysfunctional due to lack of money, still, if Lyndon LaRouche succeeds in mobilizing patriotic forces to reactivate the tradition of Franklin D. Roosevelt, then such a positive perspective would be realistic. Right now, resistance is growing in the United States against the Obama Administration's attempt to ram through brutal cuts in health care, on the British model of NICE (the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence) and QALY ("Quality-Adjusted Life Year"), which, in turn, are modeled on Hitler's Tiergarten-4 euthanasia program.
In Russia, there is a very positive memory of the cooperation with the U.S.A. during the Second World War. Former President Vladimir Putin spoke repeatedly of the necessity of a New Deal for Russia, and in no country was Franklin Roosevelt's 125th birthday commemorated so extensively as in Russia itself. If the American administration made Russia an offer to work together in the tradition of Roosevelt, to overcome the world financial and economic crisis, the Russians would certainly accept.
If such cooperation came about between the United States and Russia, no country would be more relieved than China. The U.S. economic collapse has had dramatic consequences for China, due to its dependence upon exports to America; these consequences could only be ended if the U.S.A. and Russia worked together to overcome the economic crisis, using the policies of the New Deal, with which Roosevelt brought the U.S.A. out of the Depression of the 1930s. As I found out during a visit to New Delhi in December 2008, in many discussions with high-level politicians and institutions, India would immediately join such a combination of the U.S.A., Russia, and China.
Lyndon LaRouche, in his June 27 webcast, underscored that the recent proposals from some politicians, as well as institutions, in Russia and China, to replace the dollar as an international reserve currency with another currency, originate more from desperation about the policies of the Obama Administration so far—policies which, since the G20 summit at the beginning of April in London, are in no way differentiated from those of the British Empire—than from any fundamental policy approach. It is natural that many nations, under these conditions, are desperately looking for ways to survive, and are therefore vulnerable to incompetent advisors.
At the moment that the U.S.A. gives a serious signal of a return to Roosevelt's anti-colonialist intentions, the way would be clear for pursuing a solution.
The fear that is sometimes expressed in Europe, that people don't want to return to a situation in which the U.S.A. wants to run everything unilaterally, reflects a widespread ignorance of history, and especially the history of the American War of Independence against the British Empire, as well as the tradition of the Declaration of Independence of 1776, the touchstone of American history from the Founding Fathers through John Quincy Adams, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Martin Luther King, to the LaRouche movement today. This policy is based on the idea of an alliance of perfectly sovereign nation-states, bound together in pursuit of the common aims of mankind. It consists of a complete rejection of any form of imperialism and colonialism. If the U.S.A. makes an offer of such cooperation to Russia, China, and India, in the Roosevelt tradition, it would no longer be the America of the Bush Administration and the Obama Administration which is presently on the wrong track, but it would be the America of the American Constitution.
But the fear mentioned above also reflects lack of knowledge of German history, particularly of Chancellor Otto von Bismarck's relationship to Lincoln's economic policy, which transformed Germany from a feudal country into one of the most modern industrial nations. Germany made this leap, to which we owe our current prosperity, because Bismarck's reforms put into effect what German and American economist Friedrich List had previously identified as the "American System," as distinguished from the "British System" of economics.
If the BüSo were represented in the Bundestag, we would work for productive credit creation, such as was used by the KfW, for example, during the postwar reconstruction period, on the model of Roosevelt's Reconstruction Finance Corporation: State credits were made available for productive investments so as to achieve full, productive employment.
The Breakdown Crisis Escalates
Don't fall for fairy tales: When you hear the same politicians and economists who were so positive about their prior forecasts that turned out to be completely off the mark, now promising with equal confidence that "we've hit bottom" or even that "green sprouts" of an upswing are appearing, you can be sure that this is pure propaganda. Such statements either come from people who want to keep playing the casino economy as before, or from politicians who just want to get through the Bundestag elections on Sept. 27 without upsetting the voters too much. But it is highly questionable whether reality will stick to the election schedule and desires of German politicians.
If the parties that are now represented in the Bundestag stay there, the most brutal austerity policy looms after the election: austerity which will slam every single person's standard of living. The situation on the international financial markets is so tense, that even the tiniest mistake could lead to a new phase of breakdown. The likelihood of avoiding an even bigger crash between now and the end of October is extremely slight. At any rate, soon all the patchwork solutions will be exhausted, ranging from the government's bonuses to people who scrap their old cars, to reduction of working hours ("short work"). We have to expect an increase in unemployment next year, far beyond the officially forecast 5.1 million. Since the orders of the German automakers, for machine building and exports, have taken a hit of 30-50% in recent months, the tax revenues of the Federal government, the states, and the municipalities will suffer substantial losses, and many public jobs will either be cut back or will not be able to continue at all.
Expecting precisely that, the executive board of the private Rhön Clinic boasts that it has already put together a war chest of EU1 billion (!) for the end of the year, anticipating that if many municipalities no longer have the money to operate their public hospitals, because of falling tax revenues, the Rhön Clinic will buy them up.
Under these circumstances, there will be no rebound, but a dramatic further crash, because the responsible governments have, in the two years (!) since the outbreak of the crisis at the end of July 2007, pumped an enormous quantity of liquidity—approximately $20 trillion—into the financial system, to prop up the toxic waste, the worthless securities, while doing basically nothing to eliminate the causes of the crisis.
If an airplane crashes or a train is derailed, there is immediately an extensive, often years-long investigation of the causes of the accident, meticulously analyzing what factors played a role, where the weak spots were, and how things could be improved so that similar accidents could be avoided in the future. Yet astonishingly, in this collapse, which is going far beyond the Great Depression and has already destroyed enormous capacities in the real economy worldwide, the officials have still not conducted any competent analysis of the causes.
The reason is, obviously, that some members of the government and Bundestag deputies would have to investigate themselves: to what extent they supported the interests of the financial markets in Germany (and of course, not to their personal detriment!). Meanwhile, the TV programs "Report" and "Monitor" ran identical reports on a person whose career has been synonymous with deregulation and the opening of the German financial sector to hedge funds and holding companies.
Jörg Asmussen, who is only 43 years old, can already look back on a 13-year uninterrupted career at the Finance Ministry, where he went from being a personal assistant, to becoming State Secretary—and this, regardless of whether the Finance Minister was named Waigel, Lafontaine, Eichel, or Steinbrück. Among his achievements was his work with the True Sale International (TSI) lobby organization, in launching the securitization market in Germany, as well as getting a demand included in the 2005 coalition agreement to eliminate "superfluous regulations." Asmussen sat on the Board of Advisors of TSI, as well as on the Board of Directors of IKB, which lost over EU6 billion in the American real estate market, and then, after a substantial increase in its capital stock from German taxpayers' money, was sold for a ridiculously low sum to the American locust fund Lone Star.
He also served as a representative of the Finance Ministry on the Board of Directors of BaFin, and now is a member of the steering committee of the SoFFin bank-bailout fund, which decides on handing out taxpayers' money to ailing banks, and of the Wirtschaftsfond Deutschland [German Economic Fund], which decides, with no parliamentary oversight, which businesses receive government credit guarantees. Asmussen was also charged with the preparations for the G20 summit in London, and is now a member of the six-member expert group that is supposed to make proposals on new regulations for the financial markets.
In a contribution to the July-August edition of The Quarterly Review, the magazine of the Washington Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), Asmussen left no doubt that he wants everything to stay just the way it was: "The future financial system has to continue to be global, interconnected, and reliant on open global trade and free capital flows across jurisdictions. Large, complex financial institutions will continue to operate in multiple jurisdictions in order to meet the needs of their large global clients...."
Even though Asmussen demands "robust regulations," he definitely is one of those who puts out propaganda about a couple of corrections being needed, but only in order that the system will remain essentially the same.
Could it really be, that Asmussen is an agent of the financial oligarchy? If it walks like a bear, looks like a bear, eats like a bear, and smells like a bear, then is it likely to be a bear?
And so, it is no wonder that the casino economy is going full-steam ahead, when "innovative financial instruments" are seen by the Berlin Finance Ministry just as positively as they were before. Instead of banning hedge funds and holding companies, [Chancellor Angela] Merkel only demands "greater transparency"; the securitization market is again in full swing; and Mr. Ackermann is once again promising 25% returns on investment—rates that were only achieved previously in the highest-risk parts of the financial bubble. The American insurance company AIG, which swallowed a total of $180 billion in taxpayers' money, is now once again paying out multi-digit billions in bonuses, and in London the word is "BAB" ("Bonuses Are Back"). The next, even more dramatic, crash is pre-programmed to occur very, very soon.
If this were all occurring in a "Monopoly" game, one could just say, "Let some people gamble, and the others will work and have a human life." But, unfortunately, the gambling mentality and the conduct of its sympathizers among politicians have consequences in real life: They destroy our very existence and shorten human lives.
The Need for an Investigatory Commission
At the instant that the BüSo is elected to the Bundestag, it will push for an investigatory commission in the tradition of the Pecora Commission in the United States, which, after the Crash of 1929, looked into the role played by criminal activity such as insider trading, corruption, and market manipulation. Prosecutor Ferdinand Pecora had the authority to subpoena and question the top bankers. He published his report on these hearings in the book Wall Street Under Oath. On the basis of this investigation, Franklin D. Roosevelt was then able to get the Glass-Steagall law passed, which made it a crime for public and commercial banks to engage in speculation.
The new Pecora Commission today must, among other things, investigate who was responsible for all the deregulation; whether deals like so-called "cross-border leasing," e.g., the sale of municipal infrastructure to international investors, were promoted only out of incompetence, or with fraudulent intent; whether German politics also has the "revolving door problem" that exists, for example, between Washington and New York, where politicians move into the financial sector and vice versa. One question that would have to be asked, is whether, in doling out three-digit billions of taxpayers' money to save banks that are supposedly "systemically relevant," this systemic relevance consists of the fact that the banks' toxic waste is wrapped up in certain investments by specific categories of private investors, or was the purpose to keep the "system" of the casino economy going? The investigation must result in laws that put a stop to all of this.
Finance Minister Peer Steinbrück's zigzag course shows either gross incompetence or actual ill will: On the one hand, he accused [British Prime Minister] Gordon Brown of "crude Keynesianism," but then he threw billions of tax money to ailing banks, only then to allow the creation of "Bad Banks"; and when none of this helped, he proposed that the State itself should give credits to the banking industry; but then, plagued by worry about inflation, he reported enthusiastically about the anchoring of the "debt brake" in the Basic Law. According to this plan, the individual states would essentially not be allowed to incur any new debt from 2020 on, and the Federal government's debt would be limited to 0.35% of gross domestic product. Those who are responsible for the bank bailout packages that have incurred Germany's largest new debt, and other parliamentarians who voted for the debt "brake," seem to see no problem with the fact that the Federal government would have virtually no more flexibility to extend credits for public projects, infrastructure, investment in education, etc. It is also completely counterproductive, that right before the election campaign, a debate is going on that pits guaranteed pensions for the elderly against justice for the youth: To the extent that politics is now governed by the interests of the financial markets, neither the old nor the young will get anything. These people haven't got the foggiest idea about the real economy.
The essential point remains whether we can succeed in overcoming the current crisis, which will depend on the readiness of the above-mentioned countries, and others, to draw the only possible conclusion from the insolvency of the globalization system: that the system must be put through bankruptcy reorganization, to erase the toxic waste from the banks' books, and to replace the bankrupt monetary system by a credit system, dedicated exclusively to building the physical economy.
Interestingly enough, the last prime minister of the G.D.R., Lothar de Maiziere, compared the international economic crisis with the end of the G.D.R. Many west Germans treat this as a crisis within the system, he said, whereas many east Germans conceive of the financial crisis as a crisis of the system. "We feel that this is very similar to what we lived through before," he emphasized. And so it is.
I forecast precisely this, back in 1989-90, when I warned against imposing, on the bankrupt communist economy of that time, the equally bankrupt free-market economy. I warned that it would certainly be possible to gain a couple of years by primitive accumulation, stripping wealth from the former Comecon states and the so-called Third World, as cheap-labor markets, but that this would lead to an all the more dramatic collapse. That is exactly the point at which we find ourselves today.
The Danger of a New Fascism
Meanwhile, various individuals and publications admit that today's crisis far surpasses the Depression of the 1930s in its severity and extent. Therefore, there is nothing more misleading than the formulation, "after the crisis," this or that must happen. Because the question is, with what policy do we react to the crisis? And there are, in principle, the same alternatives which existed in the 1930s, even if with some differences: Either the consequences of the crisis will be shifted onto the population, through a massive reduction in living standards, in the tradition of the process which led from the Müller government, through Brüning, up to Schacht and Hitler; or, we choose the policy of Roosevelt, who led the U.S.A. out of the Depression in the 1930s, with the help of the New Deal.
If the current policy is not changed, the crisis threatens to become dramatically much worse than that in the 1930s, because, due to globalization, all the markets in the world economy have been closely interwoven. Since the end of July 2007 we have seen how the "cluster risk" of the casino economy has fully come to pass: What was triggered by the collapse of the so-called subprime real estate market in the U.S.A., led not only to a worldwide banking crisis, but also to enormous slumps in the real economy and world trade, from which not a single country in the world has been spared.
Thanks to Alan Greenspan's gift of "innovative financial instruments," the banks, internationally, are sitting on approximately $1.5 quadrillion ($1,500,000,000,000,000) of toxic waste. At least that was the amount cited by Jacques Attali, the former advisor to the late French President François Mitterrand, who also warned about a planetary "Weimar 1923." The combination of, first, deflation, and then worldwide hyperinflation, with its almost inconceivable consequences for famine and pandemics, of which the swine flu is only the most obvious current example, would lead to ungovernability. Even today, the world's sixth-largest economy, California, isn't far away from that condition, since most banks are no longer accepting the IOUs issued by the government, and essential social programs are being cut. A collapse far greater than the consequences of the Great Depression of the 1930s threatens to throw us into chaos, in which the world population could shrink very quickly to just a few billion people.
There is also a parallel to the 1930s in that then, as today, the international cartels and financial conglomerates, the power base of the financial oligarchy, are supporting fascist solutions for the crisis. Then, it was the corporatism of Mussolini and the Schachtian austerity of Hitler. Back in 1971, economist Abba Lerner said in a debate with Lyndon LaRouche at Queens College in New York City: "If the political parties in the 1930s had accepted Hjalmar Schacht's policy, then Hitler would not have been necessary." Today, Schacht has apparently been widely accepted. Indeed, nothing else but that is meant, when the interests of the banks and the speculators have been asserted at the expense of the living standards of the population.
There Is No Life Unworthy of Living!
Under the shock effect of the atrocities committed by the National Socialists, there was, in the first decades after the war, an international consensus that euthanasia would never again be allowed. "Never again!" and "Resist the beginnings" were, for a long time, the slogans which represented this commitment. In the phase of Germany's reconstruction out of the rubble fields, despite the deprivations, there was an optimistic vector of development. An enormous will on the part of the German people to rebuild, and an economic policy based on the right principles, led in a few years to the German economic miracle so admired around the world.
During this period, the German health-care system developed into one of the best in the world. At the same time, so-called Development Decades were being discussed at the United Nations, combined with the idea that the underdevelopment of the developing countries could be overcome once and for all through the development of agriculture and industry.
But, by the 1960s, the political, cultural, and economic paradigm-shift began, where the causes for today's global crisis are ultimately to be found. In 1968, there emerged not only the movement named after that year, but also one of the most important organizations was founded, which set in motion this shift in values, virtually as a PR firm for the international oligarchy: the Club of Rome. With enormous resources at its disposal, it put books into circulation worldwide, which replaced the former belief that the problem of the so-called Third World lay in underdevelopment, with the idea that overpopulation was the real problem. The thesis of "Limits to Growth" and the alleged scarcity of resources was disseminated.
Although MIT professors Meadows and Forrester, who contributed to this book, later admitted that their computer models had been written in such a way that the result they wanted had been predetermined, and that they had consciously left out of their model, scientific and technological progress as the element which defines what a natural raw material is, the basis for the establishment of the ecology movement had been prepared. Within a few years, man was no longer seen as a creative individual, who, with the help of scientific discoveries and their application to the production process, could steadily raise the level of life expectancy and the quality of life. Step by step, the image of man was transformed into that of a factor polluting the environment, using up resources, a creature whose numbers should best be reduced.
At the UN Population conference in Bucharest in 1974, in which I participated, the thesis of so-called overpopulation put forward by John D. Rockefeller III was ridiculed by all the non-governmental organizations as a "Rockefeller Baby." But the implementation that same year of National Security Study Memorandum 200, written by Henry Kissinger, then the National Security Advisor to Richard Nixon, went a long way towards manipulating international opinion about this theme. In that Memorandum, the claim was asserted, baldly and simply, that the natural resources of the world were strategic security interests of the United States, and that the United States had the right to coerce the governments in the relevant countries to reduce their populations, if necessary through deployment of the food weapon.
In the early 1980s, the worldwide propaganda crusades of organizations such as the Club of Rome, the World Wildlife Fund, the Trilateral Commission, the Bilderbergers, and an immense number of other oligarchical think tanks had already had such an effect on public opinion, that the principle of the inviolability of human life and dignity for all people on this planet, had already widely been pushed aside by cost-effectiveness calculations. The theses of overpopulation and resource shortages had achieved a Darwinian, latently racist outlook in broad sections of the world population.
The Right to Life
In the face of that, in 1982 I founded the Club of Life, explicitly as a counter-organization to the Club of Rome: It had, and has, the goal of defending the Christian-humanist image of man, which distinguishes man by his creative capacity for reason, from all other forms of life. Cardinal Nicolaus of Cusa, whom I highly treasure, the founder of modern natural science and of the modern sovereign nation-state, defined man in his writings as imago viva Dei, the living image of God, who emulates the most noble qualities of God the Creator, and thus carries forward the process of Creation.
The inviolable dignity of man results from this unique characteristic, which Nicolaus of Cusa calls vis creativa, and which enables men to be capax dei, to have the capability of participating in God, through creative activity. For this reason, man is actually the "crown of Creation," as it is expressed in Genesis 1:26, and not the mere steward of nature, or a more highly developed ape. Man is the only form of life that can, through his creative insight into the laws of the physical universe, realize continual scientific and technological progress. When this progress is applied to the production process, the productivity of labor power rises, as do productive capacities, population potential, as well as the quality and span of life.
From this image of man, from which come the capacity of man for selfless love of one's neighbor—agape—and free will, arises the inalienable right to life for man in all phases of his existence. The only institution that can protect this human right is the sovereign nation-state, which must be committed to defend the general welfare, that is, all its citizens in their essential humanity. Precisely this principle of law, of "inviolable and inalienable human rights," is guaranteed in Article 1 of the Basic Law, and fortunately, the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe identified these principles of law as eternal rights, in its decision on the constitutional complaint against the Lisbon Treaty, also citing Article 20, which defines the identity of Germany as a social state.
The Club of Life, in numerous publications and seminars, has, for 27 years, defended this inviolable right to life, at all important inflection points at which there were attempts to abridge or abolish it in subtle ways. Be it the dangerous, sophistical arguments of bioethicists such as Peter Singer; euthanasia in Holland; pre-implantation diagnostics; withdrawal of food from comatose patients; physician-assisted suicide; flat-rate per-patient payment to doctors; or the "living will," the Club of Life has always sought to defend the principle of life, and to point out the dangers of setting out down the "slippery slope."
There was a dramatic worsening of the German health-care system starting in 1992, as a result of a pact between then-Health Minister Horst Seehofer and Social Democratic expert on social issues Rudolf Dressler; the outcome brought about the first step in budgeting, as well as competition between public health insurance agencies. These policies demolished the barriers to thinking in cost-benefit terms. Since then, a scandalous, now life-threatening underfinancing and shortage has developed, such that, for some time, there has been hidden euthanasia, rationing of health care, and "prioritization." For a certain portion of the population, the same situation with respect to health-care provisioning exists as in the Third World. This is the appraisal of a Catholic nun.
For a long time, there has been a trend toward flat-rate compensation of doctors, so that "expensive patient groups" are simply out of luck: The patient is no longer treated as a person, but as a profitable disease category. All this developed under the CDU/CSU/FDP government, then went further under the red-green [Social Democratic/Green] government, and now under the Grand Coalition.
If the current attack by the locust funds on the health-care sector is successful, and the private clinics and health maintenance organizations snap up the public hospitals and the established doctors' practices, then accessible neighborhood health care will simply no longer be available for many patients, and for many—first a quarter, then a third, and then even more patients—this clearly means shortening their life span. If the financial collapse goes into the next, apparently final round, then all of Germany will also soon have a health-care situation like that in Calcutta [Kolkatka].
When the president of the German Medical Association, Prof. Jörg-Dietrich Hoppe pointed out, in his keynote address at this year's German Medical Association convention in Mainz, that there is already covert rationing of health care in Germany, and that this must be openly discussed, so that a public debate can decide whether more money should be made available for medical infrastructure, or whether there should be professional decision-making on prioritization, Health Minister Ulla Schmidt indignantly puffed herself up, and called this proposal "rather inhuman."
The reality is, however, that under the aegis of this Mrs. Schmidt and her health-care reform in Germany, there is already a glaring underfunding of the health sector, which is inhuman, because the so-called "cap" on costs means that many patients will no longer be adequately cared for, or will be burdened with high co-payments, even though they have paid into the health funds throughout their lives. Self-employed doctors are told to to rely on a smaller contingent of profitable patients, and no longer care for those who are expensive, the chronically ill, although there is sometimes no health-care alternative in rural areas. The situation in most hospitals is moving in a similar direction: Beds are left unoccupied because there's a lack of nursing personnel, and so forth—the examples go on and on.
Even if the situation in Germany is not, of course, as blatant as it is in England, where NICE and programs like Quality-Adjusted Life Years (QALY) brutally deny treatment for certain age groups and categories of patients; or, as in the U.S.A., where the Obama Administration is trying to ram through a health-care reform in which 30% of costs would be cut, we should not kid ourselves: We in Germany are only a few small steps behind!
The argument that in times of rising unemployment and growing state expenses, limited financial resources are available, and therefore that cuts in expenditures must be made, should not be tolerated in any case. The hundreds of billions that have been doled out to the deadbeat banks, should in no case lead to cuts at the expense of the patients in the health-care system—as Office of Management and Budget director Peter Orszag has outrageously demanded in the United States. In Germany, we should be especially sensitive, when what is at issue is cost-benefit criteria being applied to the health-care system.
The medical advisor at the Nuremberg Doctors' Trials, Dr. Leo Alexander, wrote in his notes that, ultimately, it was Hegelian-utilitarian thinking that led to euthanasia in Nazi Germany. He wrote (in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1949): "Whatever proportions these crimes finally assumed, it became evident to all who investigated them that they had started from small beginnings. The beginnings at first were merely a subtle shift in the emphasis in the basic attitude of the physicians. It started with the acceptance of the attitude, basic in the euthanasia movement, that there is such a thing as life not worthy to be lived. This attitude in its early stages concerned itself merely with the severely and chronically sick. Gradually the sphere of those to be included in this category was enlarged to encompass the socially unproductive, the ideologically unwanted, the racially unwanted and finally all non-Germans. But it is important to realize that the infinitely small wedged-in lever from which this entire trend of mind received its impetus was the attitude toward the nonrehabilitatable sick.
"It is, therefore, this subtle shift in emphasis of the physicians' attitude that one must thoroughly investigate."
This "subtle shift in emphasis" has already been in process in Germany for a while, not initiated by the doctors, but by the "health economists," who inserted cost-accounting calculations into the health-care system, and by unscrupulous investors, who see the health sector as the next cash cow for speculation. At the moment when the Hippocratic Oath and the inalienable right to life no longer define the relationship between doctor and patient, we have already started down the slippery slope from which there is no way back, especially in times of economic collapse.
Developments in California give a taste of this danger. After the "Terminator" Schwarzenegger had brutally slashed social programs, several chronically ill people appealed to the population before the TV cameras, in a state of utter hopelessness, and warned that, without the medicine they urgently required, they would die in a few days. In France, the Union of Emergency Doctors has begun a mobilization for signatures and resistance against the latest health-care law of President Nicolas Sarkozy, in the tradition of the Resistance movement against the Nazis, the CNR. Under the name of the National Council of Resistance, the doctors committed themselves to allow all who need medical care into the public hospitals. "No patient is a piece of merchandise; our hospitals are not businesses where a pseudo-CEO can decide tomorrow what care is good and what bad, or what medical project the physicians 'under his boot' must carry out," they declared.
The law recently passed by the Bundestag and Bundesrat for patient end-of-life directives is an expression of nothing else but this "small shift in emphasis." This allegedly liberal law, which instructs doctors to carry out the individuals' will as to how they want their situation to be handled when they are no longer capable of giving consent, is in reality an expression of the distorted scale of value within the paradigm-shift (as in analysis situs). In a social situation in which older people are made to feel that they are just demographic ballast, spoiling the future and the living standard for younger people, naturally, pressure grows on the older generation to cease being a burden on their offspring.
Naturally, self-determination is a precious good, and the possibility that one could lose one's autonomy in old age, is something which one must confront. But, it is the illness which is now the enemy of self-determination. There are studies which prove that people with life-threatening illnesses can have a completely different attitude, and entrust themselves to the medical authorities in their hour of need. It has also been proven that a large number of people who sign a patient directive, do so because they have no social support network. Would it not be more conducive to human dignity, to reform society so that, in an environment shaped by the spirit of the general welfare, everyone has a social network?
In one of his first sermons, Pope Benedict XVI expressed his concern over the "culture of death" and a growing acceptance of euthanasia. Even if the patient's end-of-life directive doesn't go as far as the legalized active euthanasia against a patient's will in Holland, or the "death tourism" in Switzerland, the question remains why majorities in the Bundestag and Bundesrat, in the face of such a dramatically heightened economic crisis, are now in such a hurry to approve a law which involves, among other factors, a factor of saving money. We are treading down the slippery slope.
With the BüSo in the Bundestag, there would be a chance to reverse the privatization of the health-care sector and to put it under the protection of the general welfare, to which the state is obligated. When we have full productive employment again, we will also be able to afford a health-care system such as we had in 1992.
The Condition of Democracy in Germany
Members of the BüSo have most frequently heard, in their discussions with citizens at their literature tables, the assertion, "But you can't do anything about it." Among the overwhelming majority of the lower 70% of income brackets, there has long been a feeling of helplessness to exercise the least bit of influence on political events in this country. Just as bad for democracy is the widespread feeling that only the high income brackets can assert their rights, while the common citizen has no one to turn to, if he is oppressed by political developments.
Why this is so, was highlighted once again dramatically, when the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe handed down a historically significant ruling on the law approving the Lisbon Treaty, and the accompanying law for the strengthening and expansion of the rights of the Bundestag and Bundesrat in the affairs of the European Union. The court declared the Lisbon Treaty constitutional, but exclusively in the interpretation formulated at Karlsruhe. Accordingly, the EU is no Federal state, as the unfettered Lisbon Treaty had otherwise constituted it, but remains an alliance of sovereign states. Further, the ruling identified as impermissible any change of the Basic Law, as far as it affects or weakens Article 1 (inviolability of human dignity) and Article 20 (the identity of Germany as a democratic and social state, Federal statehood and the republican principle, the people as sovereign, and the principle of the constitutional state).
Furthermore, the court stressed that European integration should not lead to the erosion of the democratic ruling principle in Germany. This explicit emphasis is important, because Section 4 of Article 20, which establishes the right of resistance against anyone who wants to change Germany's identity, was first added with the emergency laws of 1968, and according to the commonly accepted interpretation of constitutional law, does not belong to the principles protected by the so-called perpetual guarantee. Since constitutional lawyers debate whether the right of resistance applies before the state system is endangered, or only after government violations against the Constitution, such an affirmation is very useful.
The scandalous condition in which German democracy finds itself, is illuminated by yet another aspect of the ruling, in that it declares the accompanying law to be unconstitutional, because it does not contain provisions for the constitutionally prescribed arrangements for parliamentary participation. In other words: Instead of strengthening and expanding the rights of the Bundestag and Bundesrat vis-à-vis Brussels, these two bodies had given away these rights in 2008—and thus violated Article 38 of the Basic Law, which defines the role of the elected official as a representative of the people. Instead of creating the legal foundation for defending the German population, if necessary, from the overreach of a supranational bureaucracy, they handed over all these rights to precisely this bureaucracy! Only a handful of the elected officials had even read this 250-page Treaty (plus commentary), which is written quite deliberately in the most incomprehensible German legalese.
Obviously, this mode of behavior has occurred with other legislation adopted by the Bundestag. The neoliberal Friedrich Merz, of all people, describes in a commentary about why he is not running again for a seat in the Bundestag, that it was not one iota better during the vote on health-care reform. The Bundestag was forced flying blind, he writes, into a vote on the more than 500-page omnibus volume, which was neither readable nor understandable, and to which, on the day of the vote, more than 100 pages of changes were added. Except for a couple of specialists, most of the elected officials didn't understand anything they were voting on, and that didn't even bother them! This passage of the health-care reform reflects, according to Merz, a shift of power from the parliament towards the government [the executive], which in no way can be seen as in accord with the rules of parliamentary democracy.
Merz goes on to say that seldom have such a large number of especially younger Bundestag colleagues been put under such massive pressure by the government and the heads of their parliamentary caucuses; individual elected officials were massively threatened that their careers would be terminated. For many elected officials who have been dependent economically on politics for a long time, acquiescence would become an existential question. One third of the elected officials are members of the government or in parliamentary functions close to the government; another third would like to get there as quickly as possible. It is no surprise, Merz writes, that not many could muster the self-confidence to stand up to the government.
As Merz stated upon announcing his departure from the Bundestag, "We have had such a 'entanglement of powers' among the branches of government, as the Constitutional Court put it, taking on dimensions such that heavy damage has been inflicted on the Bundestag in its unique function, namely, to control the government, and be responsible to the voters. Such a parliament, objectively seen, can no longer carry out its key mission." Since the voters have realized this, somehow or other, the strongest party today is that of the non-voters. It would have been much better for democracy had Merz had made his observations in a speech in the Bundestag, rather than after he had switched over into industry, when it cost him nothing to do so.
Thus, the following picture emerges: The government shapes the political parameters as the financial interests want—as seen with True Sale International, the EU treaty, and privatization of health care. The Bundestag then rubberstamps the laws, without reading them; and the citizens are the victims, because the elected officials, as has been proven, do not see themselves as representatives of the people. Then, the taxpayers can pay off the billions in gambling losses, and are permitted to die earlier, if all this has made them too poor to afford medical care.
Because our beautiful Germany is going under like this, and because we must not let this happen, that is why I will run as a candidate for Chancellor. Now the responsibility lies with you, the voters.
Germany, the Land of Poets and Thinkers?
We find ourselves in a systemic collapse, and this hits not only the financial system, the real economy, and the political sphere, but also culture as well. If we look at Germany from the only standpoint from which we should, namely the standpoint of Germans such as Nicolaus of Cusa, Kepler, Leibniz, Bach, Mendelssohn, Lessing, Schiller, the von Humboldts, Gauss, Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann, Riemann, and Einstein, then we find that we are, now, in a dark age. Our so-called elites are decadent; our population in general, except for some small circles, is thoroughly cut off from its cultural roots; the dominant youth culture, and reality in general, essentially give the young people, under present conditions, no perspective at all for the future. Life is not at all fair to the "crisis kids"; no wonder then, that they become more ill-behaved all the time.
One of the essential reasons why Germany today appears to be a complete cultural wasteland—and on this practically everyone agrees with me—lies in the unbelievably banalizing and stultifying entertainment industry for people of all ages. By a precise examination, one can determine that, here too, the same financial interests pull the strings, whether it has to do with private television fare, film and recording studios, publication houses, or social networking sites on the Internet. They all function on the principle of bread and circuses. Through shallow entertainment, consumers are turned into mass-oriented creatures, other-directed and manipulable, equally whether its a matter of country music shows or the rock band Rammstein.
What should we do then, when today we find ourselves in a condition similar to what Schiller described in his Aesthetical Letters, on the situation after the failed French Revolution? Where should changes come from, if the politicians are underlings, the managers corrupt, the artists of the current culture full of drugs, and the masses brutalized?
The answer is the same one Schiller gives in these letters: Political change is only possible through the ennoblement of the individual, and one of the most important media for this purpose is Classical art, indeed Classical music equally with Classical poetry, because, through them, people can be brought back into concord with their inner selves, and thus be allowed to become self-determining individuals. For, what Schiller said to all mankind, that a lesson should be taken from the French Revolution, so that a "great moment" would not again find a "little people," is just as true for our contemporaries: How can one strengthen one's fellow citizens so that they do not let themselves be swept off their feet by the spirit of the times?
In the seventh of his Aesthetical Letters, Schiller said on this subject: "The seriousness of your basic principles will frighten them away from you, but in play, they will bear you, their taste is more pure than their heart, and it is there that you must take hold of that shy fugitive. You will assault their rules of behavior in vain, in vain condemn their conduct; yet in their idleness, you may try your reforming hand. Banish willfulness, frivolity, crudity from their pleasures, and you will thus, without noticing, ban them from their practices as well." Thus we must go in exactly the opposite direction from that of the financial oligarchy when it comes to entertainment: Instead of using free time to go crazy, and chase all the things that sink us down into the mass—from mass tourism to mass pop concerts—we must find ways to educate our spirit and our emotions.
Schiller had previously defined the state of mind which must come about from this: "Live within your century, but do not be its creature. Serve your contemporaries, but with what they need, not with what they praise. Think of them as they should be, if you would influence them; but think of them as they are, if you would try to act for them." We must have before our eyes exactly this picture of Germans, as they should be, and not as they are, if we are to create a way out of the crisis and a vision for the future.
When one travels in other countries, it is often a surprising experience to find that the view of Germany which is held in many places, in spite of its current desolate condition, is still due very strongly to the memory of German science and culture. But in the Germany of today, the methods of creative thought which underlay the great Classical compositions in music and poetry have been almost entirely lost. What is understood as creativity today, for the most part, rather resembles, in the best cases, those arabesques thrown accidentally on the wall by the artist, of which Kant erroneously thought that they had higher artistic value than a work in which one could recognize the intention of the author.
If Germany is to recover from its present crisis—and it must—then there is nothing more important than that the people, young and old, and even the Tweeners, set themselves apart by means of the image of man which underlay all of Schiller's work. This Poet of Freedom has a very special significance for our country. The best cure for the mediocrity and two-dimensionality of the present, is to grapple with Schiller's ideas. His ideal of mankind was nothing less than that each individual person should be a beautiful soul, and thus a person in whom passion and duty, freedom and necessity, are one. Only such a person is inwardly free, and the individual who fulfills this condition is the genius who, by lawful means, expands lawfulness, and thereby creates higher degrees of freedom.
And why shouldn't more and more human beings develop into geniuses, to the degree that, in the development of the universe in the sense of the Russian scientist V.I. Vernadsky, the proportion of the Noösphere grows in relation to the Biosphere? It is not only a precondition for this development, but it is thus grounded in the order of Creation!
But geniuses do not arise from videogames, chat-rooms, or from speculation in the futures market. They develop because they have the good fortune, at the right time, to meet an individual who arouses the divine spark in them, and then they are possessed by a passionate love for the cause of mankind, or for a deeper understanding of the laws of the universe, or for the discovery of richer possibilities in the laws of Classical art.
Schiller had the great good fortune to meet at least one such individual at just the right time in his life, although he very much suffered from the oligarchical environment and customs of the military academy into which Duke Karl Eugen von Württemberg had placed him. This individual was his philosophy teacher Jakob Friedrich Abel, whose speech of Dec. 14, 1776, at the graduation ceremony of the Ducal Academy of Stuttgart, gives a flavor of the ideas with which he confronted and inspired his most famous student, who sat in the audience at this presentation. The title of the speech was: "A Discourse on Genius: Are Great Spirits Born or Educated?"
In this blazingly brilliant speech, in which he turned more and more directly toward his young listeners, Abel delineated the theme with which one is most able to inspire young people, the theme of human greatness, and the question of what is necessary in order to develop into a genius. He repeatedly and polemically contrasted this, on the one side, with the weak minds that can never arouse themselves from the slumber of their thoughts and actions: "In those without genius, all thoughts merely creep feebly, faintly forward ... only a few thoughts inhabit the barren mind at one time, and with the greatest scholarship it never escapes from an oppressive poverty"; it is characterized by a "coldness of the soul," which "sneaks quietly away along its snail's path."
On the other side, the genius: "Uncounted feelings and perceptions surge through his soul, thoughts stream upon thoughts, waves strike upon waves. This fruitfulness of genius is of the greatest importance. Exactly because the concepts are so manifold, because so many subjects stand for comparison before the soul, he is capable of the most noteworthy, most strange and special connections. Fullness of emotions, richness of thought, inventiveness and the spirit of creation, exceptional conceptions and relationships"—in Abel's description of genius is presaged not only Schiller's later description of the philosophical mind in distinction to the "bread scholar," but also the idea of thought-masses [Geistesmassen], which was developed later by Herbart and Riemann. To develop oneself as a genius, also means to be the opposite of "cool."
"Without passion nothing great, nothing worthy of fame, is ever made, no great thought is ever conceived, nor an activity of mankind worthily accomplished," says Abel. "It is clear at a glance, that no great action can be done, no Iliad conceived nor no Last Judgment made, when the essential power of the soul is not exhibited, the capability of thinking and feeling at an extraordinarily high level; for how can a great action arise without a great cause?"
Passion also distinguishes the great teachers from academic bean-counters. "What a difference between the fiery, brilliant Leibniz, who brings metaphysical loveliness and life to the most barren fields, and his cold, dry, thought-poor student; between a Plato, who in the deepest abysses of abstraction still glows and breathes lustily, and the cold, miserable critic, who in the joys of heavenly beauty, in the sight of the Graces and the Muses, can do nothing but yawn and make distinctions. It is likewise with the brilliance of conceptions. A Plato or a Leibniz, who, in the deepest and darkest abysses of metaphysics, in the most desert and unfruitful land of shadows, which is never visited by a milder ray, never penetrated by the most distant gleam, yet stands resplendent in the Sun and illuminates all around him by his brilliance; and a dark, dull systematician, who in the face of the morning sun does not see, and likes best to walk in cloudy, muffled darkness, like the light-fleeing night-owl—what a difference!"
But diligent industriousness is also necessary, but not the diligence of the "cold soul," but rather the effort which is passionately directed to the great objective: "Leibniz's brain, without training, would have become the brain of a mediocre soul"; Leibniz, who reflected all night long upon metaphysical conceptions; Shakespeare, who without passion would have remained a nameless wool merchant—these are the examples of geniuses whom Abel held before his students, and he asked them: "In Homer or Dante, Sophocles or Shakespeare, Homer, Euripedes—or in our newfangled modern poets—where does the divine spark lie hidden?"
Abel focused therefore directly on creativity, the divine sparks within the greatest thinkers and poets in the tradition of Platonic humanism, and within the greatest writers of tragedy. In the testimony of several of his fellow students, Schiller, up until 1776, is described as of a quiet disposition and endowed with "a melancholy humor." Confrontation with the inspiring teacher Abel, who familiarized him with the most important geniuses of the past, meant a total upswing for Schiller, and set his own genius free. Without Abel, we would probably never have been given the great Schiller, who has presented us the gift of the greatest historical dramas ever written in the German language, or of philosophical poems and ballads created so perfectly, according to the principle of thorough composition, like "The Artists," "The Song of the Bell," "The Ideal and Life," or "The Bond," to name only a few. The ideas of the Sublime and of the beautiful soul, would never have been formulated on such an exalted level.
Why do I bring up all this in an essay on the systemic crisis in Germany and how to overcome it? Because the key to overcoming the crisis lies here. The so-called Brandt education reforms of 1970—which, by the way, were devised by Dr. Alexander King, later the co-founder and president of the Club of Rome, in 1963, in his position as OECD representative in Paris—set out as their objective to take the school system, which, in Germany, in the post-war period, still included important elements of the von Humboldt educational system, and free it from the "educational ballast" of the last 2,500 years of Western history. That has obviously been thoroughly accomplished.
And precisely for this reason, it is time to throw out the window the entire paradigm of the past 40 years, for which such oligarchical figures as King, a co-founder of the ecology movement and of the miserable plight of education, are exemplary. The Bertelsmann Foundation, with its various projects of educational reform—North Rhine Westphalia II and the EU Agreement, to mention only two—deserves to be mentioned in this context.
With me as Chancellor, Classical culture would not be reserved for the wealthy upper class which can afford tickets to the festivals; it would be made accessible to all citizens. All children and youth would be able to learn musical instruments and the bel canto method of singing, as part of their schooling. The public media would be commissioned to present Classical art to the population, art which had not been ruined by Director's Theater [Regie-Theater] and similar productions, even if, for a time, one would have to rely on recordings of historical performances in order to do this.
I am often asked how it could be, that for now more than 37 years, I have devoted myself to a new, just world economic order and a New Bretton Woods system, even if electoral breakthroughs did not occur in the past. I could say a great deal in response to that, but I would like, for now, to select just two moments.
After my baccalaureate, I made up my mind to become a journalist. Working on our school newspaper had been fun for me, and I had been guided to my choice of profession by the admittedly naive notion that the population had a right to information. However, during my training as a journalist at a daily newspaper, and subsequent journalistic training, I quickly realized that this profession did virtually nothing to address this right. Instead, I obtained an insight into how information is selected, and also, into the eager submissiveness of my colleagues, which taught me, from the ranks, so to speak, not to take media reports at face value, but rather to keep an eye on their intentions.
The second decisive moment was in the discovery I made on a trip to China by freighter in 1971—in the middle of the Cultural Revolution—and also the impressions I formed of several countries in Africa and Asia. Above all, the sight of poverty—which one can properly appreciate only when one does not travel on cruise ships and stay in five-star hotels, but instead sees what daily life is like for most people in these countries—left me with the insight, coming back from this trip, that the world system definitely must be brought in order.
Then, during my studies in Berlin, as I came across the ideas and programs of Lyndon LaRouche, in which, among other things, he spoke of the pressing need to develop the underdeveloped so-called Third World, through building up industry, infrastructure, and agriculture, I resolved to help build his movement, and have collaborated, since then, in many development programs for Africa, Asia, and Latin America. To bring this perspective of a new, just world economic order to German voters, I campaigned with this program as candidate for Chancellor in 1976. Had I been elected then, the world would be in a better condition today.
And since the gulf between the rich and the poor has not become smaller, but rather, much greater, my earlier engagement has, if anything, grown stronger, as I have responded to a world order which, I am deeply convinced, is not in harmony with the laws of the universe and the order of Creation. It is as simple as that.
Precisely if one is accustomed to consider things from the point of view of thinkers and poets like Nicolas of Cusa, Kepler, Leibniz, and Schiller, then one will be critical of trends which destroy society, even though they are so popular. Unfortunately, there are several examples of times in Germany, in which the majority was wrong. In the Great Depression of the 1930s, there was no social force that was prepared to resist evil, and to implement the programmatic solutions to the crisis that were ready at hand—solutions such as the Lautenbach Plan and the WTB-Plan of the ADGB, as Roosevelt had done for the United States with the New Deal. Today, we must be that force.
In the coming storms, majority parties can vanish overnight, and likewise, small parties can gain influence, if they have an answer to the citizens' existential questions. As is clear from what I have already said, this time, there is no small evil, but only a great evil. But as long as the system of globalization goes down the drain, so do the assumptions of the majority. That provides a space, in which Germany can again become the land of poets and thinkers.
For that, we need the passion to want to save it. If you can arouse this passion, if you do not want our beautiful nation to sink into poverty and chaos, then help actively with my campaign. Our country needs, now more than ever, citizens who will take responsibility, with me, for policies that will defend democracy and freedom in Germany. You, all of you, are needed!
Postscript: Albert Einstein
"The world in which we live is dangerous, not because of the one who does evil, but because of the one who observes and watches it."
 The Grundgesetz, or Basic Law, is Germany's Constitution. (All footnotes are added by EIR).
 The Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau, or Reconstruction Finance Agency, was established in 1948 as part of the Marshall Plan, to provide credit for rebuilding Germany's devastated economy after the war. See "How Germany Financed Its Postwar Reconstruction," EIR, June 25, 1999.
 The agreement to form a "Grand Coalition" government headed by Christian Democrat Angela Merkel, and including her party, its Bavarian partner the Christian Social Union, and the Social Democratic Party. Neither major party had enough votes in the election to govern without the other.
 The Federal Bank Supervisory Authority.
 Josef Ackermann, the chairman of Deutsche Bank.
 Donella H. Meadows, Dennis L. Meadows, Joergen Randers, and William W. Behrens III, Limits to Growth (New York: Universe Books, 1972). The book was based on a technique known as systems dynamics, developed by MIT's Jay Forrester.
 Economist Dr. Wilhelm Lautenbach presented a plan, "The Possibilities of Boosting Economic Activities by Means of Investment and Expansion of Credit," to a 1931 meeting of the Friedrich List Gesellschaft (see Helga Zepp-LaRouche, "The Lautenbach Plan for Economic Recovery," EIR, March 20, 1998). The General German Trade Union Alliance (ADGB) put forward a plan on Jan. 26, 1932, to reorganize the world financial system and for creation of public jobs. Known as the Woytinsky-Tarnow-Baade (WTB) Plan, it was the brainchild of economist Wladimir Woytinsky. See "How the German Trade Unions Could Have Stopped Hitler," EIR, April 11, 1997.