The Freedom without which we won’t be able to live

The harsh contradiction that will dominate the politics of the 21st century manifests itself in the opposition of two equally necessary, equally indispensable tendencies. The globalization of opportunities and fateful risks will force all states to renounce part of their sovereignty. The Freedom without which we won’t be able to live weiterlesen

From Jean-Jacques Rousseau to Pankaj Mishra – all those one-eyed judgments of history

Again and again the interpretation of history has been seduced by naive humanism, because the latter represents the voice of conscience without any ifs or buts. The castles in the air thus created are full of charm as they embody the noble ideal in the face of a reality which lacks such perfection. From Jean-Jacques Rousseau to Pankaj Mishra – all those one-eyed judgments of history weiterlesen

Climate Change and Mass Migration

I am fortunate enough to live in a country where nobody is hungry, nobody is persecuted because of his or her faith, color or race and where even at night people need not fear to be ambushed or murdered by starving people, desperate thieves or political fanatics. Climate Change and Mass Migration weiterlesen

The Curse of Globalization

I am living in Puch near Weiz, a small village in Styria. Some tourists who spend their holidays here will describe the place as dreamy, although local people are by no means idle dreamers, but hard-working men and women. The Curse of Globalization weiterlesen

Forebodings of war: US against China – hopefully a trade war only

As late as the end of the last century, one could read in Der Spiegel, a German magazine, that after the downfall of the Soviet Union the super-power US had achieved complete victory. In fact, Hollywood movies were on display all over the world, people dressed in jeans, singing and making American music, drinking Coca-Cola, and spreading Windows, Apple, and the American-made Internet all over the world. In the nineties, no world power seemed to exist or even to be conceivable other than the mighty United States of America. Forebodings of war: US against China – hopefully a trade war only weiterlesen

Capitalism, Wealth, and Power

The current moaning about neo-liberalism, tends to obscure the fact that the last two hundred years have seen nothing less than the greatest progress in human history, provided, of course, that we are willing to define progress in a purely material way. Capitalism, Wealth, and Power weiterlesen

Hannah Arendt versus Vladimir Putin

It is probably due to our biological origin as primates that our most intense feelings are so often associated with triumph over enemies. The Iliad is a hero song, where the bloodiest victories are celebrated with the utmost effort of poetical inspiration. No wonder, then, that the new Russian Czar invites his countrymen to indulge in these atavistic intoxication. More and more often, one can hear from his mouth how heroic the Russian people had fought against fascism and finally overcome it. Hannah Arendt versus Vladimir Putin weiterlesen

Europe’s political madness

Wheat is still wheat, and pigs are pigs – that’s the difference with regard to computers, mobile phones or even cars, where every generation of products is subject to perpetual innovation. In essence, nature has created the pig (once this used to be God’s prerogative), since even the interferences of breeders are still rather limited. The so-called progress of agriculture is therefore almost exclusively due to the fact that pork, wheat, milk, and so on get cheaper. Europe’s political madness weiterlesen

Europe’s Fiscal Pact – or how to make a deal with the devil

The euro area is struggling for survival. If you are still in doubt, listen to all those by now far less self-conscious, far less apodictic pronouncements of leading representatives from politics and economy. At the G20 summit in Los Cabos Jose Manuel Barroso even lost countenance!

„The euro is not in danger!“ How often did Wolfgang Schäuble, Minister of Finance, how often did the gurus of politics, economics and finance feign unshakable certainty! To no avail. By now, pure fear has spread to the Commission and the European Parliament. With the euro’s collapse not only the idea of European unity will be damaged – the Brussels Babel of Eurocrats will falter as well and with it thousand of its richly endowed sinecures. Europe’s Fiscal Pact – or how to make a deal with the devil weiterlesen

Transatlantic pundits

During the twenties of the last century Irving Fisher was an acclaimed economist, comparable only to Paul Samuelson or Joseph Stiglitz in our time. Like virtually all economists of international repute, he tended to be wrong – indeed fundamentally so. As late as October 1929, he reassured investors with his prophecy that their money would be perfectly secure in Wall Street. A few days later the world was horrified by Black Friday. (1) Transatlantic pundits weiterlesen