September 19, 2005 | By Peter Bihr |
These days, I get asked quite regularly what’s up with the German elections, and what all the fuss is about anyway. I guess you could summarize it somewhat like this:
There was a country which was quite rich, but not everything was going very well. Unemployment was high, and the economy just wouldn’t kick off and come back to former strength. After a series of elections on state-level, the ruling party, the Reds, were paralyzed. Their everlasting opponents, the Blacks, had gained a lot of support. Thanks to the German governmental system, the Reds couldn’t pass any more laws. What was even worse, though, was that they couldn’t even get their supporters in line. They started to get into internal fights.
So the Red King, Chancellor Schröder, came up with a wicked plan: Much to the surprise of the Black Princess Merkel and her minions, as well as the rest of the kingdom, Schröder called for early elections. At first, the Blacks complained loudly, how dare he! But then, one of their lesser minions had a look at the polls, and -surprise!- saw that the Blacks could easily win that election. And so they agreed, for the greater good, for the country.
Driven by the enthusiasm of the moment, the Blacks could finally agree on their new ruler. Not the prince of Bavaria, but the princess of the Eastern Regions should become the new Black Queen and fight against the Red King. And so the election campaigns started, and both tribes sent out their minions to get their supporters to make their cross on the ballot.
And it was clear, the Black Queen would take power and remove Red King Schröder.
However, the Red King wouldn’t give up, and he kept telling his people You have to vote me again, for I am the chosen one to save you and your country, and the Black Queen is a bitch.. So he spoke, and promised to finish what he had begun.
And the people weren’t sure if they wanted him to finish what he had started. Not even his own tribe was sure about this. But since all the Reds and Blacks were fighting about was described in foreign tongues, in terms of taxes, and policies, and in other boring terminologies, the people weren’t quite sure what to think of either of them anyway.
And so the election day came closer and closer. And as the day was really, really close, the Black Queen had managed to shrink the people’s support for her tribe to a mere 7%, or so the oracle said.
But how could i lose so much support?, the Black Queen asked the oracle. And the oracle said, uhm, good questions, i’m not quite sure. however, i have a suspicion. I believe you lost support, because the people don’t believe in you. They don’t believe that you stick to your roots. They don’t think you really know what you’re talking about when you promise to help women with kids, as you don’t have any. Your sergeants backstab you again and again. But most of all, they don’t believe in your promises to fix this mess of a tax system.
And Black Queen Merkel asked, so tell me, oracle, will i still win the election? do my people still love me?
The oracle thought about this for awhile, and with a little grunt it said: yeah, don’t worry. they don’t really like you, but they like the Red King even less. He has long since over-played his cards, and the people want to get rid of him more than anything else. So don’t expect any fancy results, but you’ll be the new Queen and rule the Kingdom for lack of better alternatives. And the Black Queen smiled and went back home.
Then Election Sunday arrived. And the people congregated, and filled out their little ballot papers. The people asked, so, tell us, oracle, who has won? But the oracle seemed confused. And it said that it couldn’t quite tell, and they should come back the next day, since it had a bad headache and needed some sleep.
The next morning, when the roosters started to cry, the votes were counted. And the people asked, for fuck’s sake, who is the winner? we’re sick of this back and forth, and we have more important things to take care of. And still, there was no winner. Both the Black Queen and the Red King had got exactly the same number of votes.
Both the Reds and the Blacks announced themselves the true and only winner of the elections, and the people have decided, that we shall reign, and the people were stunned, as everybody could see that they both were wrong. But they refused to even talk to each other about sharing a seat.
no, i won’t share with the Red King, as this throne is mine, said the Black Queen. And the Red King replied, This is my throne, and no, i won’t share with the Black Queen.
And the people went back home to take care of their own life, as Red King and Black Queen wouldn’t stop fighting. And fighting they still are, although the sun has long since set, and still no winner is in sight. There is one thing, however, everybody has agreed on, and they wrote it on a plaque and screwed it on a wall at the market place. The plaque reads: don’t trust the oracle, as it doesn’t know what it’s talking about.