The German Government Extends its Control Even Further

Markus Gärtner is an author, journalist, and editor-in-chief of Privatinvestor Politik in Germany. In the following video Mr. Gärtner discusses the appointment in Bavaria of a representative to monitor hatred and agitation on the Internet. He also talks more generally about the proliferation of unelected federal “representatives”, some of them members of the Bundestag, appointed by the government in Berlin.

Many thanks to Hellequin GB for the translation, and to Vlad Tepes and RAIR Foundation for the subtitling:

Video transcript:

00:00   Welcome, ladies and gentlemen. Bavaria now has, as the first federal state in Germany,
00:05   a representative against “hate speech”.
00:09   He takes actions against “hatred and agitation” on the Internet,
00:12   and we learn from the newspapers that he can also initiate raids.
00:16   Of course the first thing you ask yourself is: Why such powers for an agent
00:21   who is NOT part of the hierarchy in a ministry?
00:25   This is very worrying for me.
00:28   But this is not all about the subject of the “Federal Commissioner”
00:31   or representatives of the federal government.
00:34   Max Otte made this clear today in a tweet and asked;
00:38   “Is that INSANE! Control and denunciation now completely official?”
00:42   “And that in Bavaria first?” My additional question:
00:46   “What does that say about the state government in Bavaria?”
00:50   So, the subject “Federal Government Commissioner”.
00:53   There are quite a few: Representative for emigrant issues and national minorities,
00:58   for information technology, against anti-Semitism,
01:02   for Afghanistan and Pakistan, for German-Polish cooperation,
01:06   for energy-efficient construction, care-giving, drug issues and transport of goods, etc. etc.
01:11   We also recently learned from a tweet from the federal government
01:15   that there is now also a “start-up commissioner”.
01:19   Of course, he recently helped young companies
01:23   who have come under pressure from the “Corona crisis”.
01:26   What about these “representatives” of the federal government,
01:30   and then of course also of the state government. That is not an exclusive “Berliner” appearance.
01:35   It’s very difficult — I saw that this morning during my research —
01:39   to find the numbers. I found at least one example for 2008.
01:44   I owe that to a request that the FDP submitted two years ago.
01:50   There were 32 such “representatives” of the federal government.
01:54   There are now at least 38.
01:57   That means, in the past decade alone, there has been a 20% increase
02:01   in the number of “representatives” of the federal government.
02:04   What are their official duties? They are appointed by the federal ministries
02:09   or the Chancellor,
02:12   and they support, it says here, in an independent and advisory form,
02:17   and are NOT included in the hierarchy of administration.
02:21   I think this is a very important note: “NOT included in the hierarchy of administration.”
02:25   And in the German of the entrepreneur one would say, “They are out of balance sheet”.
02:29   Yes, this is off-balance sheet growth that is taking place.
02:34   And they should, above all, as part of their work, bundle topics, large topics
02:39   that extend over the work of several ministries.
02:43   But with the number of state secretaries we have here, one wonders:
02:46   “Couldn’t THEY do this?” Then on some of the subjects I wrote down,
02:52   one asks oneself of course; “Why do they even exist?”
02:55   “Well, can’t you do that internally?” For example,
02:58   there are posts that coordinate cooperation with Poland,
03:01   France, the USA and Russia if you start looking,
03:04   but there are NO “representatives” of the federal government for the coordination
03:08   of work with Italy, the Netherlands, China or even Austria.
03:13   Maybe it would be necessary now, after Ms. Merkel and Mr. Kurz have argued about accepting migrants
03:19   from the Greek islands, just by the way.
03:23   The government officially says:
03:26   “Well, very few of them have their own budgets”
03:29   But some, or even many of them, for example, have their own staff.
03:33   So a whole chain is being built up here. This of course has effects or consequences,
03:39   which I consider to be at least questionable.
03:42   When you look for example at — I’ve made that clear to you here in a screen shot —
03:47   that of the official list, the link that leads to this list,
03:51   you’ll find yourself under the video.
03:54   Then you will see that more and more MPs are being “entrusted” with these tasks
03:59   to be “commissioners” for the federal government.
04:02   And that means, in plain language, that the legislature, i.e. parliamentary capacity,
04:08   has moved into the executive branch of Government.
04:12   They are now tapping into the legislature, the MPs’ capacities,
04:17   and pulling them in. With this, of course, the government is extending its control further.
04:23   Which the government has been doing in many areas for many years
04:26   by providing financial support to the media,
04:29   through advertising, for example, and help, for example by supporting NGOs
04:34   that are doing the work the government deems important, or by inflating
04:37   the Bundestag further and further
04:40   with the same number of constituencies in which we voters, we citizens,
04:44   when we are entitled to vote, determine the MPs with the first vote,
04:49   but their number remains pretty much the same. Then when the size of Parliament grows,
04:54   the influence of the parties grows, whose officials submit the state lists.
04:59   Over these state lists an ever-increasing percentage of [party] members comes into the Bundestag,
05:05   and now these “AGENTS” of the federal government.
05:09   If you now say: “Well, 38-40 federal commissioners,
05:13   that’s not so many.” If you just keep in mind
05:16   that less than a handful, and that’s already an exaggeration,
05:20   of virologists have such an influence on politics
05:24   and on the manipulation of the media,
05:29   then you can imagine what capacity is being built here.