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Schroeder ready to step down to make way for Merkel

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  • Greg Cannon
    http://www.expatica.com/source/site_article.asp?subchannel_id=52&story_id=24174&name=Schroeder+is+ready+to+step+aside+for+Merkel Schroeder ready to step down
    Message 1 of 4 , Oct 3, 2005
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      http://www.expatica.com/source/site_article.asp?subchannel_id=52&story_id=24174&name=Schroeder+is+ready+to+step+aside+for+Merkel

      Schroeder ready to step down to make way for Merkel

      3 October 2005

      BERLIN - Ending two weeks of post-election deadlock,
      German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder on Monday
      signalled a willingness to step down to make way for
      "a stable government", a move widely seen as paving
      the way for a woman to become chancellor for the first
      time in German history.

      After a key post-election vote in Dresden bolstering
      his conservative challenger Angela Merkel on Sunday,
      Schroeder said in a television interview that he would
      not "stand in the way" of a resolution of the
      stalemate created by the indecisive September 18
      general election.

      "This is not about my claims nor about me personally,"
      he said in backing off from his election night claim
      that he would remain chancellor, come what might.

      "It is about the claim of leadership of the Social
      Democratic Party of Germany (SPD)," the chancellor
      told RTL Television.

      "And that is a matter to be decided by the party
      leadership," he added.

      "I shall accept any decision," he concluded, saying he
      did not want to stand in the way of a stable
      government.

      While Schroeder hinted that he still believed his
      Social Democrats should lead a grand coalition,
      political analysts were quick to point out that no one
      in his party has the charisma or influence to step
      into Schroeder's shoes.

      Schroeder's remarks, coinciding with festivities
      marking the 15th anniversary of German unification,
      came amid mounting public pressure for a resolution of
      the deadlock and with opinion surveys showing only 18
      per cent of Germans agreed with him that he should
      stay on as chancellor.

      On election night, he had vowed to stay on as
      chancellor, bolstered by voter returns showing the SPD
      at 34 per cent, just one point behind the CDU/CSU at
      35 per cent.

      Since then he has proposed a variety of scenarios,
      including sharing the chancellorship with Merkel on a
      rotating basis. He has also suggested that he would
      withdraw his claim to the chancellorship if Merkel
      likewise did so.

      His final change of heart came after Merkel's
      Christian Democrats expanded their lead over Schroeder
      by an additional seat in balloting on Sunday in
      precincts of Dresden where the September 18 voting had
      been postponed owing to the death of a ballot
      candidate.

      Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) won 37 per cent of
      the vote in Dresden while Schroeder's SPD got almost
      33 per cent.

      The Dresden results mean Angela Merkel's Christian
      Democratic alliance (CDU/CSU) now has 226 seats in the
      German parliament's lower house, the Bundestag,
      compared with 222 seats for Schroeder's Social
      Democrats, (SPD) which were won by his party when the
      regular election was held on September 18.

      Voting for about 219,000 people in half of Dresden had
      to be postponed because one of the candidates on the
      ballot, a far-right member of the National Democratic
      Party of Germany (NPD), died before election day. The
      NPD was soundly defeated and won just over 2 per cent
      on Sunday.

      Merkel and Schroeder have been forced into holding
      talks on forming a grand coalition between their two
      parties, the long-time main rivals of German politics.

      Analysts were predicting the negotiations could drag
      on well into November. Leading economists warned that
      such a protracted stalemate could stifle any
      rekindling of German economic recovery.

      Schroeder's remarks on Monday now dramatically speed
      up that process. SPD officials immediately huddled
      Monday evening to discuss his statement and to plan a
      strategy for this week's talks with the CDU/CSU.

      Schroeder's outgoing SPD alliance with the Greens
      failed to win a majority, but Merkel's designated
      CDU/CSU marriage with the pro- business Free Democrats
      also fell short.

      Talks between the SPD and the CDU/CSU on a possible
      grand coalition will resume Wednesday in Berlin.

      Schroeder's remarks capped a day of speeches,
      fireworks, street fairs marking the 15th anniversary
      of German unification.

      German President Horst Koehler, in a Unity Day speech,
      noted that the divisions between East and West Germany
      have been more stubborn to heal than originally had
      been predicted in the heady days when the Berlin Wall
      came down.

      "We are coming to the realisation that some parts of
      our nation will always be more disadvantaged than
      other regions," he said. "We are coming to the
      realisation that not every region can be a model of
      prosperity and happiness, even while we strive to
      achieve prosperity and happiness for all."

      Potsdam was the focus of this year's official
      celebrations, which have been held in a different city
      each year since the two Germanys were united at the
      stroke of midnight on October 3, 1990.

      A huge street fair and a spectacular fireworks display
      highlighted the Potsdam festivities, which drew
      hundreds of thousands.

      Stirring speeches and classical music concerts were
      the order of the day for dignitaries, meanwhile, as
      former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl received the
      prestigious Quadriga Award for achievement from former
      Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev.

      Other recipients included Afghanistan's leader Hamid
      Karzai, Prince Karim Aga Khan and Tim Berners-Lee,
      creator of the World Wide Web.
    • THOMAS JOHNSON
      I watched a pretty good symposium of NYT opinion writers last weekend on Cspan2, and there was one moment in particular that was especially poignant when a
      Message 2 of 4 , Oct 4, 2005
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        I watched a pretty good symposium of NYT opinion
        writers last weekend on Cspan2, and there was one
        moment in particular that was especially poignant
        when a mild-mannered gentleman asked how the best
        journalists in the world had failed to question Bush
        on his rationale(s) for invading Iraq, when it was so
        apparent to millions of lay people across the world
        that he was lying. When all was said and done, all
        editorial page editor Gail Collins could do is shrug
        and say, 'Sorry.'
        I look to history for parallels and I am reminded of
        the press's role in starting the Spanish American War
        in 1898. From the Wikipedia:


        These events in Cuba coincided in the 1890s with a
        battle for readership between the American newspaper
        chains of Hearst and Pulitzer. Hearst's style of
        "yellow journalism" would outdo Pulitzer's, and he
        infamously used the power of his press to influence
        American opinion in favor of war. Certainly, real and
        documented atrocities were committed in Cuba, and a
        real rebellion was being fought against Spanish rule.
        But in addition, Hearst's newspapers often fabricated
        stories or embellished factual descriptions with
        highly inflammatory language. Hearst published
        sensationalized tales of atrocities which the "cruel
        Spanish" (see Black Legend) were inflicting on the
        "hapless Cubans". Outraged by the "inhumanity" of the
        Spanish, Americans were stirred up to pushing for an
        "intervention", which even the most jaded hawks, like
        a young Theodore Roosevelt, would treat as a mostly
        dress-up affair. Hearst is famously quoted in his
        response to a request by his illustrator Frederic
        Remington to return home from an uneventful and docile
        stay in Havana, writing: "Please remain. You furnish
        the pictures and I'll furnish the war."

        Although Hearst and other warmongers attributed the
        sinking of the Maine to a Spanish mine, it was almost
        certainly a design flaw that caused the explosion.
        Another rationale was that it would be good for the
        railroads, which I find pretty brazen.
        One major difference in that war was that President
        McKinley was initially opposed to it, but Hearst had
        everybody so whipped up that he had to proceed or
        face a public outcry.
        I find ironical and troubling that when Clinton
        attacked Osama Bin laden in 1998, all you heard from
        the press for at least a month was "Wag the Dog" as if
        there was no merit whatsoever in the assault.
        Where were those people in 2002 and 2003?

        Tom



        --- Greg Cannon <gregcannon1@...> wrote:


        ---------------------------------
        http://www.expatica.com/source/site_article.asp?subchannel_id=52&story_id=24174&name=Schroeder+is+ready+to+step+aside+for+Merkel

        Schroeder ready to step down to make way for Merkel

        3 October 2005

        BERLIN - Ending two weeks of post-election deadlock,
        German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder on Monday
        signalled a willingness to step down to make way for
        "a stable government", a move widely seen as paving
        the way for a woman to become chancellor for the first
        time in German history.

        After a key post-election vote in Dresden bolstering
        his conservative challenger Angela Merkel on Sunday,
        Schroeder said in a television interview that he would
        not "stand in the way" of a resolution of the
        stalemate created by the indecisive September 18
        general election.

        "This is not about my claims nor about me personally,"
        he said in backing off from his election night claim
        that he would remain chancellor, come what might.

        "It is about the claim of leadership of the Social
        Democratic Party of Germany (SPD)," the chancellor
        told RTL Television.

        "And that is a matter to be decided by the party
        leadership," he added.

        "I shall accept any decision," he concluded, saying he
        did not want to stand in the way of a stable
        government.

        While Schroeder hinted that he still believed his
        Social Democrats should lead a grand coalition,
        political analysts were quick to point out that no one
        in his party has the charisma or influence to step
        into Schroeder's shoes.

        Schroeder's remarks, coinciding with festivities
        marking the 15th anniversary of German unification,
        came amid mounting public pressure for a resolution of
        the deadlock and with opinion surveys showing only 18
        per cent of Germans agreed with him that he should
        stay on as chancellor.

        On election night, he had vowed to stay on as
        chancellor, bolstered by voter returns showing the SPD
        at 34 per cent, just one point behind the CDU/CSU at
        35 per cent.

        Since then he has proposed a variety of scenarios,
        including sharing the chancellorship with Merkel on a
        rotating basis. He has also suggested that he would
        withdraw his claim to the chancellorship if Merkel
        likewise did so.

        His final change of heart came after Merkel's
        Christian Democrats expanded their lead over Schroeder
        by an additional seat in balloting on Sunday in
        precincts of Dresden where the September 18 voting had
        been postponed owing to the death of a ballot
        candidate.

        Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) won 37 per cent of
        the vote in Dresden while Schroeder's SPD got almost
        33 per cent.

        The Dresden results mean Angela Merkel's Christian
        Democratic alliance (CDU/CSU) now has 226 seats in the
        German parliament's lower house, the Bundestag,
        compared with 222 seats for Schroeder's Social
        Democrats, (SPD) which were won by his party when the
        regular election was held on September 18.

        Voting for about 219,000 people in half of Dresden had
        to be postponed because one of the candidates on the
        ballot, a far-right member of the National Democratic
        Party of Germany (NPD), died before election day. The
        NPD was soundly defeated and won just over 2 per cent
        on Sunday.

        Merkel and Schroeder have been forced into holding
        talks on forming a grand coalition between their two
        parties, the long-time main rivals of German politics.

        Analysts were predicting the negotiations could drag
        on well into November. Leading economists warned that
        such a protracted stalemate could stifle any
        rekindling of German economic recovery.

        Schroeder's remarks on Monday now dramatically speed
        up that process. SPD officials immediately huddled
        Monday evening to discuss his statement and to plan a
        strategy for this week's talks with the CDU/CSU.

        Schroeder's outgoing SPD alliance with the Greens
        failed to win a majority, but Merkel's designated
        CDU/CSU marriage with the pro- business Free Democrats
        also fell short.

        Talks between the SPD and the CDU/CSU on a possible
        grand coalition will resume Wednesday in Berlin.

        Schroeder's remarks capped a day of speeches,
        fireworks, street fairs marking the 15th anniversary
        of German unification.

        German President Horst Koehler, in a Unity Day speech,
        noted that the divisions between East and West Germany
        have been more stubborn to heal than originally had
        been predicted in the heady days when the Berlin Wall
        came down.

        "We are coming to the realisation that some parts of
        our nation will always be more disadvantaged than
        other regions," he said. "We are coming to the
        realisation that not every region can be a model of
        prosperity and happiness, even while we strive to
        achieve prosperity and happiness for all."

        Potsdam was the focus of this year's official
        celebrations, which have been held in a different city
        each year since the two Germanys were united at the
        stroke of midnight on October 3, 1990.

        A huge street fair and a spectacular fireworks display
        highlighted the Potsdam festivities, which drew
        hundreds of thousands.

        Stirring speeches and classical music concerts were
        the order of the day for dignitaries, meanwhile, as
        former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl received the
        prestigious Quadriga Award for achievement from former
        Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev.

        Other recipients included Afghanistan's leader Hamid
        Karzai, Prince Karim Aga Khan and Tim Berners-Lee,
        creator of the World Wide Web.


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      • Ram Lau
        Nobody wants to lose his/her job. Nobody dares to speak out. Sad eh? We ll see how the wealthy liberals pull this media war off. So far it s been nothingness
        Message 3 of 4 , Oct 4, 2005
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          Nobody wants to lose his/her job. Nobody dares to speak out. Sad eh?
          We'll see how the wealthy liberals pull this media war off. So far
          it's been nothingness on the left. Jon Stewart and Air America Radio
          and DailyKos are all promising. It's tough because many people are all
          brainwashed by the Rush and Savage et al. since long ago. Tragic, but
          that's where we are right now.

          Ram


          --- In prezveepsenator@yahoogroups.com, THOMAS JOHNSON <AVRCRDNG@F...>
          wrote:
          > I watched a pretty good symposium of NYT opinion
          > writers last weekend on Cspan2, and there was one
          > moment in particular that was especially poignant
          > when a mild-mannered gentleman asked how the best
          > journalists in the world had failed to question Bush
        • THOMAS JOHNSON
          Sad and tragic are appropriate adjectives. Even if we had Watergate era-caliber reporters these days, I doubt we have the Ben Bradlees and ,most importantly,
          Message 4 of 4 , Oct 5, 2005
          • 0 Attachment
            Sad and tragic are appropriate adjectives. Even if we
            had Watergate era-caliber reporters these days, I
            doubt we have the Ben Bradlees and ,most importantly,
            the Katharine Grahams around anymore, who withstood
            tremendous pressure to see the story through. That may
            have been the high water mark of US journalism, and,
            in my opinion, are American heroes of the highest
            order.

            Tom



            --- Ram Lau <ramlau@...> wrote:


            ---------------------------------
            Nobody wants to lose his/her job. Nobody dares to
            speak out. Sad eh?
            We'll see how the wealthy liberals pull this media war
            off. So far
            it's been nothingness on the left. Jon Stewart and Air
            America Radio
            and DailyKos are all promising. It's tough because
            many people are all
            brainwashed by the Rush and Savage et al. since long
            ago. Tragic, but
            that's where we are right now.

            Ram


            --- In prezveepsenator@yahoogroups.com, THOMAS JOHNSON
            <AVRCRDNG@F...>
            wrote:
            > I watched a pretty good symposium of NYT opinion
            > writers last weekend on Cspan2, and there was one
            > moment in particular that was especially poignant
            > when a mild-mannered gentleman asked how the best
            > journalists in the world had failed to question Bush





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            To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
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