The following article concerns a German citizen named Georg Thiel, who is currently languishing in durance vile for the heinous crime of refusing to pay the state broadcasting fee. It’s the equivalent of the “licence fee” for BBC in the UK, except that the latter applies only to citizens who actually own televisions. In Germany you have to pay the broadcasting fee whether you watch television or not.
Mr. Thiel didn’t own a TV or a radio, and made the logical decision not to pay a fee for a service that he didn’t use. The functionaries of the German administrative state viewed Mr. Thiel’s refusal as an act of rebellion, possibly the equivalent of the crime of “domestic insurrection” as it is now understood here in the Country Formerly Known as the United States of America.
I couldn’t find any news articles in English about the case of Georg Thiel, but here’s one in German.
Anyone who trusted the Führer still had to go to the gulag
by Wolfgang Prabel
On Thursday there was a disturbing entry in Die Welt: “Those who trust democracy do not need to go to prison.” It was about the GEZ [TV tax*] refuser Georg Thiel, who has been languishing in the dungeon for months because he does not watch television and does not see the need to pay for it.
Incidentally, the author of the entry shot an argumentative buck when he compared the GEZ with a tax in his entry. The broadcast contribution is not a tax, but a contribution in the financial constitutional sense, according to the judgment of the Federal Administrative Court of July 18, 2018. This legal opinion is hair-splitting, but the Welt entry shows the argumentative confusion in Merkel’s power machine.
It is of course completely absurd to link trust in democracy to the consumption of forced television. Democracy is supposedly a twin of freedom. Two examples from the 20th century on the connection between trust and personal freedom:
Many of Stalin’s victims were devout Bolsheviks, but their trust in Papa Stalin was of no use. Even so, they were sent to the gulag to be worked to death and ended up as polar bear food. Even if a Jew had professed his loyalty to the Führer, it wouldn’t have done him any good. Trust in the prevailing ideology does not protect against dungeons, concentration camps and gulags.
Thiel wrote a letter to the only political party that “does something” for him. The AfD published his letter on social media on Thursday. “In the coming plenary we will give the other parliamentary groups the chance to commit to a modern broadcasting that does not take political prisoners,” commented AfD MP Sven W. Tritschler, who recently visited Thiel in prison. “We continue to fight for Georg Thiel and countless other citizens who no longer want to be ripped off by state radio.”
Georg Thiel now has reliable friends in the only liberal party in our country. Greetings to Georg Thiel. Hold out against the old termagant and her perverted court!
Greetings to the domestic secret service: “Television was invented to give illiterate people a good reason to wear glasses.” (Dieter Hallervorden)
|*||Until 2013 the organization charged with collecting the TV tax was known as GEZ (short for Gebühreneinzugszentrale der öffentlich-rechtlichen Rundfunkanstalten in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, Fee Collection Center of the Public Broadcasting Companies in the Federal Republic of Germany). The tax is now known as the Rundfunkbeitrag (broadcasting fee).