European Values (II)

BERLIN/WARSAW (Own report) – Whereas Berlin is attacking the Polish government because of its media law; massive criticism is being raised against the German public broadcasting. While German politicians are calling for sanctions to be imposed on Poland, because it is placing its public media under government supervision, a right-wing conservative former CDU minister has become Chair of an influential panel of Germany’s ARD public television channel. Observers note that, even after the Federal Constitutional Court’s intervention, state officials or individuals with close government ties exercise significant influence on the public broadcasting steering committees. Due to their structural relationship to the state, on the one hand, and the programs’ political orientation toward government policy, on the other, one could speak of “embedded journalism” in Germany, a former correspondent of the ZDF public television concluded a few years ago. The journalist went to work for the Swiss Television, because it does not have “a NATO state’s obligatory alignment.” The German public television’s foreign news reporting is even increasingly being accused of using falsifications.

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Germany’s ascendancy over Europe will prove short-lived

Although the article has a point and the population is truly in decline, Germany should not be counted out. Germans have the know-how, a very modern infrastructure, are still the most industrious and forward thinking people with a vision that no other on the European continent has or can be compared to. It didn’t literally give its manufacturing base to the Chinese.

Germany has peaked. Its hegemony in Europe is a “power illusion”, a confluence of fleeting advantages soon to be overwhelmed by the delayed effect of error and the crush of historic forces.

If demography is destiny, it may be clear within five years that ageing Germany is going the way of Japan. Within 20 years it may equally be clear France and Britain are regaining their 19th century role as the two dominant powers of Europe, albeit a diminished prize. Continue reading

EU Plans to Withhold Funds From Hungary

Hungary — quite possibly the next target of the German-dominated EU.

Hungary appears to be turning into the next Greece. The country has failed to reduce its deficit, and today the European Commission reacted. The executive arm of the European Union has announced a proposal to withhold from Hungary $655 million in EU development funds.

“The commission took a decision today to propose to partially suspend commitments of the EU Cohesion Fund for Hungary from January next year onwards because of non-compliance with the latest council recommendation in January to correct its excessive deficit,” said Olli Rehn, EU commissioner for economic and monetary affairs.

This is the first time the European Commission has taken such an action against one of its members as punishment for an excessive deficit.

Though EU officials portray today’s action as an encouragement rather than a punishment, the greater truth is that the European Union is now wielding tremendous power over nations that were formerly sovereign—especially those that are poorer. Expect Hungary’s sovereignty to fade away just as Greece’s has, and for EU authority to continue to strengthen.

Full article: EU Plans to Withhold Funds From Hungary (The Trumpet)