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Europe's Far-Right Resurgence
Euroskeptics in Germany Seduce Two Businessmen

Two leading businessmen in Germany have now endorsed the Alternative For Germany (AfD), a radical party that wants Germany to leave the Euro currency altogether. The businessmen in question will also donate money to the party, according to Open Europe:

FAZ reports that…Heinrich Weiss, CEO of the SMS-Group – a global leader in plant and machinery construction – and former President of the German Federation of Industry, has officially shifted his endorsement from Angela Merkel’s CDU party to AfD while Hans Wall founder of Wall AG has joined the party, arguing that in terms of EU policy, “Germany should see Great Britain as an example to follow”.

This is another step toward political legitimacy for the AfD, which remains in many ways a marginal party. It has a long way to go if it wants to wield serious power in Germany—it isn’t even as great a force as UKIP is in England, for example. The latest Economist has a piece on Merkel’s leadership that describes the obstacles to further AfD growth. Merkel remains popular, with 79 percent of respondents to a recent poll backing her continued performance in office. The Economist believes she has yet to use this clout to do anything very impressive for her country, but it is a roadblock for the AfD, even if several more businessmen defect.

Still, this opposition party continues to grow, not only picking up new support from wealthy Germans, but also winning some regional elections. It would be easy to write off the AfD as too marginal to take a bite out of Merkel’s huge approval ratings, but that kind of complacency often works out poorly for leaders who fall into it.

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  • Jacksonian_Libertarian

    “Still, this opposition party continues to grow, not only picking up new support from wealthy Germans, but also winning some regional elections.”

    This is the key, UKiP the TEA Party all growing at the expense of the establishment which is losing power. Is there any reason to believe that the Political elites around the world are suddenly going to change and reverse this implacable trend?

    • FriendlyGoat

      “Political elites” on the conservative side are the only reason the TEA party in this country has not passed out of its 15 minutes of fame faster than a Cabbage Patch doll. The folks in the three-cornered hats are oh so happy to be hired as useful idiots FOR the political elites of Corporate America, all-the-while thinking they are some unique force. Buffoons to a name is more like it..

      • mc

        Uhh, aside from insulting your fellow citizens do you have an argument you’d care to advance?

        • FriendlyGoat

          Yes, the TEA party members have no idea what they are doing. That’s my argument. Thankfully, most of my “fellow citizens” do not identify as TEA, so I’m not insulting them.

      • Thom Burnett

        When someone doesn’t see things your way, the easiest thing to do is call them evil. Next easiest is to call them stupid. Thinking people work to understand those who disagree with them. The other side may still be wrong but for common ideas, it’s not because they’re all evil or stupid. Friendly Goat, You’ve been able to think better than this in many of your comments. You wouldn’t be on this site if you didn’t have some interests outside the liberal bubble. I strongly suggest you learn what the Tea Party (and Conservatives, Libertarians, etc) believes and why – without using the liberal media as your primary source.

        The TAI headline with the word ‘Seduce’ is clearly less than objective as well.

        • FriendlyGoat

          TEA did not really originate with “Taxed Enough Already”, but the members seem to be okay with that description as well as others. That is why they do not know what they are doing. They tend to believe tax cuts create jobs, when they don’t. They don’t understand that one of the best ways to corral their enemies, the liberal trial lawyers, is to double the taxes on the high incomes of those contingent fee guys. They do not seem to appreciate the need for brakes on high-frequency traders. They do not seem to understand why high executive compensation as led to more layoffs of workers. They even think the sky should be the limit for the earnings of athletes—-without regard to how they get paid and from whom.

    • Corlyss

      Yes. That is the nature of majority parties, with the exception of the Whigs. They don’t stand around and watch themselves sidelined; they appropriate the most popular features of 3rd parties. I don’t really care who gets the credit as long as this nation begins to come to its fiscal senses and stop putting increasing numbers of people on the public dole in one form or another.

  • FriendlyGoat

    Does anyone remember that Germany seeing itself as “special” from the rest of Europe is not a cool idea?

    • Corlyss

      Perhaps, but they are special. A nation with their populations’ work ethic, warrior spirit (admittedly disabled for the last 3 generations), and phenomenal military success can’t help but be special. In a memorable class on the Marshall Plan and Post War Europe 50 years ago, the prof observed that the true miracle of post war recovery was not West Germany that had all that aid from the US, but East Germany, which was ravaged by Russia, had all their factories dismantled and exported to Russia, and still managed to come back to a phenomenal industrial ranking in only 20 years. That wasn’t Communism that did that for the East Germans; that was the German ethos.

      • FriendlyGoat

        I’m certainly not knocking the Germans for their ingenuity or success at practical applications. But they ARE part of modern Europe and should not be seceding from the whole any more than disgruntled Texans should be leaving the USA and the dollar. Nothing good would come from either.

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