Macron has to put down his kid gloves – Handelsblatt Morning Briefing

Macron has to put down his kid gloves – Handelsblatt Morning Briefing

In a leading European country with a tradition of enlightenment and bourgeois revolutions, 30 percent is extremely high for the right. On the other hand, it’s not 50 percent either. And so the pure mathematics after the first ballot of the French presidential election shows that in the end the old will also be the new president.

The bourgeois-costumed hardliner makes it big and speaks of a question of civilization. If this means the illiberal autocratism of her idol Vladimir Putin, that should hardly improve her chances. Everyone will be talking about how the Prague-based First Czech-Russian Bank sent the right-wing populist love from Moscow with a loan of nine million euros.

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Looking at the French result, it is striking to what extent socialists and conservatives – who used to decide the occupation of the Elysée Palace among themselves – have now been wiped out.

Valerie Pécresse of the Republicans didn’t even manage a consolation prize with 4.8 percent, and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo of the Parti Socialiste is a quantité negligeable, to put it politely, with 1.7 percent. Of course, if Macron doesn’t leave the foie gras and dealmaker world of this beautiful country behind in the next 14 days, there remains a right residual risk.

Speaking of probabilities, let’s just quote the mathematician and philosopher René Descartes: “Nothing is distributed more fairly than common sense. Nobody thinks they need more of it than they have.”

Putin has had intimate experiences with Austria, which is always politically flexible and neutral. Unforgotten how he gave the then Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl from the ÖVP gift table party a waltz and earrings worth 50,000 euros in August 2018.

Or as party friend Karl Nehammer said in December 2021, shortly after taking office as chancellor, that the almost finished Nord Stream 2 pipeline should deliver gas as quickly as possible: It was “wrong to link the commissioning to Russia’s behavior in the Ukraine conflict”.

Austrian Chancellor Nehammer is traveling to Moscow today.

(Photo: IMAGO/SEPA.Media)

The worst is to be feared when the man from Vienna makes world politics again this Monday. After a visit to Ukraine at the weekend, Nehammer met Putin in the Kremlin’s intellectual bunker in the afternoon – as the first Western head of government since the beginning of the war. The traveler also wants to address war crimes. There are so many that the audience time should hardly be sufficient for this.

The economist Gabriel Felbermayr was commissioned by the Foundation for Family Businesses to determine what the end of naïve globalization and the relocation of trade transactions to the respective economic blocs means in mathematical terms.

There are plenty of examples in the public debate of how the great antipodes USA and China use trade as a foreign policy weapon. But: “The EU’s idea of ​​a harmless player in terms of trade policy is not correct,” says the President of the Austrian Institute for Economic Research.

The per capita income in Germany is therefore 1.6 percent lower than it would have been in the ideal state of free trade. It is about the right degree of decoupling between Russia and China, which in turn are manipulating prices and markets with protectionist measures. Felbermayr warns that decoupling China would result in half a trillion euros in damage every year.

The new standards strengthen the competitiveness of European companies, says Green Party leader Katharina Dröge: “Competitors from other countries cannot simply import their goods into the EU, which they may have manufactured under much cheaper conditions because they were more harmful to society and the climate .”

In a statement called at short notice, Anne Spiegel described her four-week family vacation after the flood disaster last summer as a mistake and apologized for it.

They say politics is a brutal business. At first glance, Federal Family Minister Anne Spiegel from the Greens could be classified here. Close to tears, she revealed intimate family details at a press conference last night to explain why she was vacationing in southern France for four weeks in 2021 when everyone was struggling with the flood damage in the Ahr Valley. These are the reasons:

  • Her husband suffered a stroke in March 2019, and since then the family has been trying to avoid stress.
  • The corona pandemic was an “insane challenge” for the family, which “also clearly left its mark on the children”.
  • Everyone needed a holiday, she was always available and also made phone calls. Nevertheless, she did not meet the requirements: “I apologize for this mistake.”

As friendly as this open-heartedness is, the question arises as to why the completely overburdened Rhineland-Palatinate Minister for Family Affairs, Women, Youth, Integration and Consumer Protection also took over the Ministry for the Environment, Energy, Nutrition and Forestry at the beginning of 2021. At the same time, she also prepared as a top candidate for the state elections.

You can also say “no”. So she was not responsible enough either to her family or to the state. The fact that Anne Spiegel revoked her written statement from the previous day that she had taken part in cabinet meetings “digitally and by telephone” fits in with the confused overall picture.

The politician should get through this as little as North Rhine-Westphalia’s Environment Minister Ursula Heinen-Esser (CDU), who resigned because of a holiday in Mallorca during the flood.

What is scarce is expensive. A high salary indicates the scarcity of the respective qualification. That’s how everyone earns related to IT system architecture, around 25 percent more since March 2020.

In controlling, marketing, financial analysis and sales, the salary increase is 15 percent, as our title report analyses. According to the figures from the consulting firm Willis Tower Watson, frequent job changes and inflation that switched from trot to gallop made themselves felt in addition to the acute shortage of staff. Ifo boss Clemens Fuest says: “The Ukraine war reinforces stagflationary tendencies that were already there.”

And then there is the Council of Economic Experts, founded in 1963, which also provides an example of the shortage of important skilled workers.

Well, after the departure of the two liberal-conservatives Lars Feld and Volker Wieland (the latter also for private reasons), there are suddenly only three instead of five “Wirtschaftsweise”.

This is less due to market laws and more to political misfires. There was always arguing about finance and debt policy, and Wieland, who warned about inflation, is likely to be absent in the future.

He says goodbye to the energy embargo against Russian violent capitalism with the assessment that the German economy “would cope with a delivery stop from the Russian side, for which one urgently needs to prepare, just as well as an embargo of its own.” When hearing such sentences, Olaf Scholz emphasizes with a slight smile he immediately shook his hand in a heartfelt farewell.
The chancellor may be thinking of a saying by Michel de Montaigne, according to which we may become more learned through the knowledge of others: “But we only become wiser through ourselves.”

I wish you a correspondingly successful start into the week.

Greetings to you
Hans Jürgen Jakobs


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