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  • Seymour Gris: Are Germans the Americans of Europe?


Seymour Gris: Are Germans the Americans of Europe?

The week in Berlin and Germany related news is brought to you again by Mr. Gris: Germany is the enemy of Greece, beer the enemy of Angela Merkel and, apparently, pastel colored pants the enemy of straight people.

1. Are Germans the new Americans?

Writing in Der Spiegel, columnist Jan Fleischhauer (“meat beater”) claims Germans have become the Americans of Europe: imperialists trying to impose austerity and draconic discipline upon the Greeks while in fact showering them with money. The result: German flags burning in the streets of Athens, Merkel protrayed with a swastika armband.

The comparison is utterly inadequate. Despite its role as world cop, America still manages to seduce the global masses with its movies, celebrities and media. Germany will never produce a movie like Avatar or a star like Madonna or a company like Facebook. On an emotional level, technically superior cars and good beer can’t compete with the heart-conquering Hollywood dream machine.

If Germany is fated to be the America of Europe, it needs to work on its soft power strategies and export more movies like Goodbye Lenin! and produce a supermodel less fascist than Heidi Klum.

2. Angela under attack

Our leader’s not getting much love from anyone these days: the Greeks probably got a kick out this video showing the hated Angela Merkel drenched by five beers spilled on her by a nervous waiter last week.

Often the only woman in the room – she often has to put up with a lot of crap from the guys. Like when that prankster George Bush Jr. gave her surprise backrub…

3. Megaclub in Neukölln: “Watch out, I’m hetero!”

Closer to home: the operators of the new Cube Club in the Kindl Bauerei in Neukölln invited the district’s straight-talking mayor and Thilo Sarrazin sympathizer Heinz Buschkowsky to hold an opening speech. “Prenzlauer Berg is out,” he declared. After the catty observation, he went on to say how he’d just bumped into a young man in pastel trousers and told him: “Watch out, I’m hetero.” Clubbers (presumably in less soft colors) were amused. What were the owners of Cube thinking? They probably weren’t thinking. One more nail in the coffin of NK’s reputation…