Germans have a linear, Calvinist thinking, and Martin Shultz was a bad candidate. This is why Angela Merkel won. It is as simple as that and it is not news.
The news is that the big German coalition has suffered an unprecedented loss and is unlikely it will ever recover in the future.
Our society is facing new challenges, for good and bad. Globalisation, digitalisation, immigration, cyber-criminality, security, a new media landscape and terrorism, to mention just a few. All such challenges cannot be dealt with political structures of the previous century.
For instance, look at the media, an industry we know well. Traditional politicians still believe in the power of print and they beg editors to give them space for their statements. Yet very few will pay any attention. Much ado for nothing. Tomorrow’s politicians do not care less of print or televised media. They use Twitter and can pass their messages, worldwide, for free, in an instant.
This is what the society has sensed, but seemingly today’s leaders have not comprehended and insist to address tomorrow’s problems with yesterday’s solutions. Indeed, they do not realise that the tomorrow is already gone and we are heading non-stop in the after-tomorrow.
Immigration is one of the issues today’s rulers have not perceived in its real dimension. Left, right and centre mainstream politicians, are competing to prove who is more politically correct than the others and who displays better humanistic values than the others. In the meanwhile, the far-right all over Europe, with a repeated, “wooden-tongue” anti-immigrant rhetoric, is capitalising on this futile exercise of the traditional political powers and it is soaring.
In Germany, the far-right got 13% of the vote – not because the Germans love neo-Nazism, but because ordinary people are facing problems from immigrants in everyday life.
For ordinary people, security is not to protect the Prime Minister with two platoons of special forces, day and night. They care less of their Prime Minister. All they care about is to be able to walk thoughtlessly and safely, from the bus station to their house after work. This is why the rise of the far-right all over Europe will continue.
However, besides the poor victory in the German election, Angela Merkel has been able to conquer Europe economically during the last decade. Today, Germany is the leading centre of power in the Union after intelligently driving the UK out. At the same time, the traditional good German-Russian relations (going back to von Ribbentrop – Molotov Pact of 1939) were revitalised thanks to a good understanding between Angela Merkel and Vladimir Putin.
To rule Europe, Germany needs Russia economically and geopolitically. This is the reason the Cold War between Germany and the United States is reaching levels of high tension. The more so that Germany in this matter, without the UK in the Union, is pooling on its side the entire Union.
However, with weaker powers in her own country, Angela Merkel will not have an easy time to go much further with her plans. Here, therefore, maybe a little exaggerated or far-fetched, comes the day-after scenario for Europe.
The Juncker mandate ends November 2019, in two years’ time and a new President will be elected in the European election of May 2019, with the procedure of the “spitzenkandidat”. This procedure gives a minimum of political legitimisation of the President of the European Commission identifying him “de facto” as the “Prime Minister of Europe.”
Under the circumstances, the new President of the European Commission (2019-2024) will be elected in May 2019 and will be the “spitzenkandidat” of the winning party.
The European People’s Party (EPP) is likely to win again the European election of 2019. In European elections, the confrontation is more a matter of ideology contrarily to national elections where the battle is centred mostly on current domestic economic and social matters. In this respect, the EPP is the only political group which is left with a solid ideological base.
In the previous European election, Jean Claude Juncker was leading the EPP ticket. In the next European election, no matter what he says now, it is not likely that Jean Claude Juncker will lead the EPP ticket again and will be re-elected for another term.
However, as he repeatedly said in public, he will resign shortly after his re-election. This time, as no European Parliament elections are envisaged before five years, the Council of the Heads of States will choose the new President. He or she must be an EPP personality and it is rather likely that in this case the winning candidate will be Angela Merkel.
The reason Angela Merkel will not run as the “pitzenkandidat” of EPP in May 2019 election is that if she leads the EPP ticket, the party might lose the first position. Angela Merkel may be loved by Germans, but not by anybody else in Europe because of the austerity imposed by the Germany-influenced European Central Bank.
As head of the European Commission, however, Angela Merkel would be able to introduce legislation that would not be able to pass in Germany and which will affect all EU Member States, including Germany.
Indeed, it is easier to manipulate the Brussels “system” and pass a Regulation affecting all Europe rather than pass the same law in the Berlin Bundestag.
What may happen the day after Germany will totally dominate Europe, I do not know. What I do know is what were the end results of two similar situations in the past century.