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"the city’s budget was expected to be in surplus by nearly €1.5bn at the end of 2017, a new record."
Which has nothing to do with efficiency but transfer payments by other states.
Without the “Länderfinanzausgleich” Berlin would be €3-4bn in red.
Safety, a friend of mine, who is a pretty blond blue-eyed woman in her early 40s, had so many nasty run-ins with non-ethnic-German men on public transportation in the years she lived in Berlin she became too fearful to be out on her own after 9 PM. She told me some of the stories, they were pretty bad experiences. The men who treated her badly were clearly racist and threatening, and felt comfortable being so in a public place to any woman they felt like hassling. She gave up on Berlin and moved to Portugal, she liked Germany and German people, but Berlin is adopting a policy of tolerance of bad behavior, she decided to abandon ship before it sinks. She left about two years ago.
Pls stop these racist comments. She should have been aware that the way she dresses and the way looks is deeply moving to these young men. They still suffer from centuries of colonialism and more recently from a trauma of being a refugee. And Germany after having committed murderous sins last century is in no position to complain.
Oh, knock it off. These young men are quite capable to controlling themselves if they choose to. Most do. It is mostly about them taking the opportunity to behave badly because they feel that they can. Anonymity and being away from family are great opportunities to let loose.
Let's break down your comment one sentence at a time.
Accusing Econo-1964 of racism is an Ad hominem attack. This is becoming far too common. It is also factually inaccurate. Islam is a religion, not a race. It is interesting how the people who frequently throw around accusations of racism, are usually the ones who like to say race doesn't exist.
Secondly, it should not matter how a woman looks. Any woman should feel safe dressed in a bikini in any place or culture. To say otherwise is victim blaming. For decades feminist fought this rhetoric from conservatives. Now they are engaging in it to support supposed "allies" because of intersectionality.
Thirdly, making excuses never solves problems. Taking responsibility and enacting change solves problems. If I wanted to engage in straw-man arguments as you do in your final sentence, I could provide examples of people who have suffered equal or greater trauma who act in a more respectable and acceptable manner.
Lastly, Have you heard of the saying, "Two wrongs don't make a right." In your opinion, how many generations must suffer for the sins of the father? No one responsible for said murderous sins is still alive and/or free to roam the streets of Berlin. Why do you think you are entitled to make this judgment call about who gets to complain? Since you brought it up, maybe the trauma inflicted on Turks, Syrians and Iraqis is deserved for what they did to the Armenians in the 20th century.
Unfortunately too many people like you are adopting a stance on social and political issues based on a never ending cycle of revenge.
If I can take an ad jingle from Berliner Pilsner: "Berlin, Berlin, du bist so wunderbar".
Sure, a lot is broken about this city... but it permits a freedom unseen in any other city I've lived in.
Berlin doesn't work but it sure is wonderful.
Berlin is a good image how Germany will look like in a couple of years time. Most inhabitants are receiving transfer payments, bureaucracy is inefficient and bloated and ghettos are becoming the norm. To give up Prussia for this crap what is called Germany nowadays is just a shame
"makes people deeply suspicious of anything that looks too much like efficiency and competence."
A great line that many people would dismiss as a joke, but is true insight into humanity and culture.
It makes total sense that the "cells" in a larger organism (Germany) that are alike in this way would concentrate and "flourish" in one place that is congenial to them, leaving the rest of the country healthier for it.
Is this a bad thing? Only if you are the wrong type and forced to live there.
Note the income stat shows only that Berlin is not a true capital [London, Paris], which everyone knew already.
I just wish the author did not staple random pieces of information together - so Germany is not as centralised as UK or France which only means that GDP is achieved in a more distributed manner. Since when is that bad? Why is that causing poverty as suggested in the article?
Very disappointed by quality of this article
And i'd like to invite the American in Berlin to visit us in London - North Kensington. Roadworks will be fine as this is cosmetics but you might not find a school for your kids at all.
Yes, that way of stating it ["take Berlin out of Germany, point-2%"] leaves one ignorant how far Berlin is below German average. Poverty??
As an American living in Berlin with my German wife, I can attest to the accuracy of the article. After "weighing" (literally) the kilos difference in documentation required - never mind the time - we decided to marry in Washington. I had to go to four separate agencies - in different parts of the city - over several months to exchange my US drivers license for a German one. My step-daughter attends a school that is literally falling apart (ceilings collapsing; pipes bursting, etc) and is often released from classes when a teacher is sick and no substitute is hired. There are several roadworks in our area that have been 'underway' for years - but I have never seen anyone actually work there. Don't get me wrong, there are many wonderful people in this city and it does have much to offer culturally and socially. But for a 'world capital'..............
The four offices required is perhaps the key to this; the government exists to keep its employees employed, not to serve the voters. It is surprising that the presence of the nation's MPs in the capital isn't shaming it into doing better - or do they all merely make sure they live away from the problems in the states from which they come?
Perhaps this is the real Germany, the model of reasonableness, efficiency and modernity in the rest of the country must just be a facade then, a mere pretense.
Odd, I didn't see the word "socialism" in this article. Socialism has this magical property to turn anything into feces.
The (dog) faeces are there on the poorly lit sidewalks at night. Another triumph of socialism, like Venezuela or India, where socialism is embodied in the constitution
>Registering a new car can take weeks, depriving new owners of a means of transport and car showrooms of space for new stock.<.
Are there any car dealers left in Berlin - or in the former DDR/GDR? Poland is just some 80 km away, Berliners visit Polish side of the border even for grocery,petrol. For barber, dentist. With circa 20% cheaper cars in Poland than in their homeland it would be logical that cars are bought at the neighbour's showrooms as well. So does since 10 years (that is twice :) my German friend from Rostock, which is a bit more far away from Poland than Berlin.