Thursday, July 07, 2005

German Opposition Shows Signs of Unbecoming Arrogance

As the governing Left rips itself to shreds in Germany, in advance of an election that hasn't been called yet, the opposition, centrist coalition (CDU/CSU/FDP), intoxicated by polls which give it some 53% of the national vote, is already quarrelling over ministerial posts.

Bad move, that, and a big turn-off for voters. No matter how complete the routing of the socialists may seem (current polls put the SPD on 26%, and the Greens on 7%), the electorate remains volatile. The hard-left, ex-communist, quasi neo-Nazi WASG/PDS protest grouping is getting a lot of airtime right now. One effect of their attention-seeking tomfoolery will be to place the SPD's backward-looking, punitive policies in a deceivingly mainstream light.

The centre still has a huge amount of work to do if it wants to move the political mainstream in Germany decisively to the right. Arrogant scrapping over ministerial places now will only undermine its efforts.

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