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ALLIANCE FO§ DEMOCRACY
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Ruck-Rede and Oath of Office

When the then Federal President Roman Herzog on 26th April 1997 gave his now famous > Ruck-Rede speech (actually: 'Onward into the 21st century') in the famous and infamous Hotel, the world stood still for a moment.
It was rare for a Federal President to bawl out the country he represented in such a way. With almost fatherly care, he tried to explain to the more or less shocked public what was the matter with Germany. "Here we are suffering largely from despondency, crisis scenarios are cherished. A feeling of paralysis lies over our society." And as the core of all evil, if there were not many cores of many evils, he saw the "Loss of our economic dynamism."
The brake block hampering this dynamism was identified by Herzog as the bureaucracy being suffered by all, and also the lack of readiness of those responsible to accept responsibility immediately and to risk something new. This call to accept responsibility was directed particularly at every individual German, at businessmen, at the press, at the parties, and to these in particular: "All political parties and all social forces unanimously complaint about the great problem of high unemployment. If they really mean what they think, I now expect them to act quickly and decisively! I call for greater determination! We cannot afford the self-imposed inertia of political institutions."
Particularly interesting was the call for a new "social contract for the future. Each and every vested interest must be subjected to review. Everyone must be involved. Whoever just demands something from somebody else – depending on situation for employers, from the unions, the state, the parties, the government, the opposition – they will achieve nothing. First we must be clear about what sort of society we want to live in in the 21st century. We need a vision again. Visions are nothing else but strategies for action. That is what differentiates them from Utopia. Visions can mobilise unimagined forces: I only need recall the vitality of the "American Dream", the vision of Perestroika, the power of the idea of freedom in autumn 1989 in Germany.
The West Germans also once had a vision, which raised them up out of the ruins of the Second World War: the vision of the social market economy, which promised prosperity for all, and managed to keep this promise. The vision of bringing Germany, defeated in the war and morally discredited, back into the community of democratic states and into Europe. And finally the vision of the reunification of a divided Germany. Should expect patent recipes from me. But when I try to imagine to myself Germany in the year 2020, then I can only imagine a country which is much different from the one we have today."
It may be the privilege of the Federal President not to speak in more concrete terms on such important questions, it may demonstrate to what extent the Germans are not in a position to take the fate of their country into their own hands, and instead to trust and hope that inspiration will come from somewhere. It may be the privilege of the Federal President not to speak in more concrete terms on such important questions, it may demonstrate to what extent the Germans are not in a position to take the fate of their country into their own hands, and instead to trust and hope that inspiration will come from somewhere. We are now only nine years away from that 'Germany' in the year 2020, which according to Roman Herzog is to be significantly different from that of the year 1997. Our prospects: currency crash, high unemployment figures, no pensions for the following generations, no upturn with healthy growth. In this connection, it may appear particularly appalling that the chancellors of these times, Kohl, Schröder and Merkel continued to spend more money than the state took in, and that it was always just a matter of election promises rather than the interests of the electorate.
The President (GG Art. 64), the Chancellor and all Federal Ministers (GG Art. 56) take the oath of office when entering office. The President takes the oath of office at a joint session of the Bundestag and Bundesrat; the Chancellor and the Ministers take the oath before the members of the Bundestag. According to the former President of the Bundestag Wolfgang Thierse, the oath of office does not however have any legal significance: (see Maunz/Dürig/Herzog/Scholz, commentary on the Constitution, Art. 56 rec. 4 and 10): "According to the text of Art. 56, and also according to the simple regulation which this question has found in the law on the election of the Federal President by the Federal Assembly, the commencement of the term of office and official authority of the Federal President does not depend on the taking of the oath. Art. 56 requires only that this must take place close to the time of entering office. The regulations require nothing more. Like all oaths of office required under German public law, the oath of office of the Federal President is not in any conceivable context subject to criminal sanction, such as in the sense that a flagrant breach of the obligations taken on in the oath could be interpreted under criminal law as perjury or similar." And more:
"No Federal President (and also no Chancellor or Minister) will be so cynical and so obsessed with power that they would be concerned at the moment of entering office solely with the power, the prestige or the personal benefits associated with the office in question. They will always be concerned with "getting something done", i.e. realising ideas which are closely related to their political and ethical basic positions, whatever these may look like in detail and from whatever intellectual sources they may originate. On these basic positions, which in some cases may be significantly more important and binding for the individual than any legal regulations (even the Constitution), the new office-holder also undertakes publicly – and if he takes them halfway seriously, this will produce for him additional non-legal motives – to conduct his office in compliance with the Constitution, and above all its constitutional possibilities and limits."
It would have been good if only one German chancellor had assumed office in this sense and had not entertained only lobbyist interests, merely to placate the electorate, and otherwise done nothing but keep state power in their hands in the interests of their own party. Roman Herzog may serve here as a prime example, at least in the sense that he not only understood what Germany is suffering from, no, he also had the courage to talk about it, and actually said something. What a pity, and more of a pity since this appeal went unheard to the ears of Kohl, albeit in his last year, Schröder and Merkel against the background noise of German political everyday life. It is high time for jurisdiction on these points by corresponding basic legislative changes. And the people should be involved in these changes, since after all, all power in a democracy comes from the people!
On the 2017 Federal Elections
No Restraint
The IMF
Trump’s Election is a Warning for Germany’s Political Parties
Year-End Selection of Texts
CDU Party Congress 2016
IMF Crisis Management a Failure
Deployment of the Bundeswehr in Germany
Crucial Test with International Implications
Ever Closer?
On the 2016 German State Elections
Revealed: Colossal Public Fraud in Germany and Europe
Nettlesome Politics
The Press
As We Begin 2016
Legal Action
Clever Shifting Tactics
New Charges in an Ongoing Saga
Evil under the Sun – The G20
Political Paradox
Game over for Merkel
The Greeks are making history
Clash of the Titans
Elmau
FIFA Roulette
The Beast Roars
The Silver Lining
Pulling in Opposite Directions
The Deafening Silence
Texts on the liquidation of the euro
Wasting Time
New Rules, Same Impetus
Call in the Army
Politicians Run from Themselves
Tax Policy Loopholes
Europa without the Euro
Alternative to the Euro
Hellas
Easter 2015
Deflation
Tidying Up
Insolvency Statute
Heiner Geißler
Germany Corrupt No More
India’s GDP growth
PEGIDA
Rescue Fever
Unbridled Power
Heaven on Earth
Getting down to the Nitty Gritty
1-0 in Favour of the Opposition
The Junk Currency
Oil War 2014
Golden Goodbye
The Ukraine Aid Debacle
World Tax Authority
Demonstrations in front of the ECB
Promises and Trust
Democratic Deficits
Nothing is safe
Fit for a Museum
At Christmas 2014
Family Voting Rights
Clueless Advisors
Pension Debacle
The Balanced Budget Lie
The Wimpy Currency
Acid Test
Two Very Different Issues
Who is Ruling the World?
More Clandestine Employees
The Recession Principle
Is This Really Better?
Kohl and Merkel
Debt Brake Debate
Reforms
Merkel and the democracy
Tax Losses
Totalitarian Collectivism
Regrettable Incident
Wulff’s Attorney Brings New Legal Action
The ECB in the Crossfire
Former Constitutional Judge Sceptical
A Lovely Gathering of VIPs?
German Banks Need Money
Stumbling Match
Deutsche Bank under Pressure
The Crow …
Papier‘s Morality
Shot in the Arm for the Economy
Political Crime Novel
ECB Soon to be the Eurozone‘s only Bad Bank
Demonstration for Democracy
Award for responsible action
Recommendations in case of a crash
Final move
European rating agency
The last elections
Hartz-IV is enough
Mr. Putin, please cry!
No longer worth anything
Free trade agreement
1st September 2014
The election in Saxony
Special European Summit
Bankers are counting on it
Debt cut á la state
Immigrants criticised
Unbelievable assets
Bundesbank closes Money Museum
Lawsuit against bank union
Only the penitent …
Sustainability
ECB stability report
Cowardly warriors
The financial industry has learnt nothing
Bribery of MP’s
They are also blind on 2.
The Stability Pact
Avoid Obama
Thoughts on Merkel's birthday
Megalomania’s children
Niebel’s Low Points
On László Andor’s speech
Snowden should say nothing
Reduction of interest rates
OECD report
A great blunder
Germany as a driver of growth?
Farewell, housing allowance
Sick health service
The EU Commission knows about popular deception
Draghi gives a warning
Self-praise stinks
A forced affair of the heart
Drawn from left to right
Hollywood
The aftermath of an election
65 years of the Basic Law
Hypocrisy
Who will save the life-insured?
Minimum wage
Minimum Wage I
Minimum Wage II
Minimum wage III
Minimum wages IV
The minimum wage V
Arise for revolution
The European elections are an act of dictatorship
Switzerland and Europe
Protection of the Constitution and services
The impossible triangle
The standard pension
Schäuble tricks again
The old “Welt”
The Union wears the trousers
Zeroes – commas – nothing!
Book publication
Court Condemns Politicians
The highest German court
Parties for the European election
Freedom of the press
Dispensation from obligations
European Elections
European election
The resurrection of "doctor" Schavan
Per capita assets
Federal Constitutional Court – Accrued gain and provision
ESM - ECB - the flood of debt
The hysterical Republic
Review proceedings against Wulff
The own goal of the High Court
Judges helpless
Schavan and zu Guttenberg
Human rights
Counterfeit money and false fifties
Fight against tax fraud?
New fellow citizens
So many ministers
Democracy the Turkish way
But will every European pay?
Data protection
Tax havens
Free Trade Agreement
Data thieves at work
Expropriation of the citizen
Soon without cash
NSA Investigation Committee
Dutch rating agencies
Officials in the German Bundestag
Snub for banks
Repeated deception of the people
De-dictatorisation
GroKo = Große Kosten (great costs)
The sluts of the SPD
What the grand coalition will present to us
Federal Public Prosecutor versus the NSA
The new “tithe”
The people’s sense of justice
Trauma of coalition negotiations
When will it finally come, the Constitution for the united Germany?
Investors and savers
Finally, Mr. Ströbele
Church and State
Left party politics
Is the Constitution democratically legitimised?
Needs must when the devil drives
Wiki-Leaks +
The CDU and its donors
State of emergency
High finance and party-politics
People and stock market
The person and their office
With full intent
Elections
Private retirement provision
It’s all about the quota
Deception over the Fiscal Pact
The failure of the government
Not really more money for the unemployed
Surpluses in health
Euro rescue by means of inflation
Asylum for the Chancellor
Discussion over democracy
Complaint against ...
The apparent vote ...
Courage, Mrs. Merkel!
Paid E-mailing
Only one month to go
Siegfried the Brave
Draghi wants more...
Fraud by forecast
Germany illegitimate
Election gifts
Left out
Youth unemployment
Public relations...
Leaders in politics
The rubble women
Every effort ...
Berlin Joint Welfare...
The casino of Cyprus
Ratings and bank union
A Conservative party...
Lies
Employees of public...
Bank union
lose links and ...
Democracy in Germany
Close-up
Our money is not safe
Out of order
More spirit of ...
TV duel
France in need
Finances in the ...
False average
The fight against corruption
Parliamentary absentees
Bravo, Mr. Weidmann!
At the end, Mrs. Lagarde?
On the subject of Cyprus
The wool has been ... I
The wool has been ... II
The problem of inertial ...
Schroeder’s homage
Gay marriage: only policy
Gauck
The budget in NRW was ...
Penalties for bankers
Bank bailout fund
The female quota
G-20
News about the Euro rescue
The war of the currencies
Stalemate in Italy
Merkel’s interests
NPD ban
Rating agencies
War-games again
S&P’s in the stocks
Political control
Mrs. Schavan, how...
Begging at a high level
Spain in the trend
Treaties between friends
Joint determination...
The most blatant lie...
Lower Saxony has...
Elections in Lower Saxony
Why have we called...
Something is rotten...
Secret agreements
Wulff has done...
MSK = DSK
Outcray against the ...
Politics is breaking ...
In the trap
The Target-2 system
Euro-political...
The Devil returns home
Members’ salaries
The last
Bankruptcy regulations...
The energy revolution
Bank rescue
Inactivity of the ...
So much eeriness at ...
Bad management is ...
Goodbye, Greece
General strike
Atlantis
Media in a fog
Euro Finance Week
The Berlin Bazaar
Careless love
The suffering basis...
Rescue packages ...
Election of the ...
ZDF
Steinbrück’s earnings
EU Summit in October
Aurea mediocritas
The veneering process
They have lied to us
All scapegoats together
Double accounting
Tour de force
Testament of poverty
Disservice
€ 8 more
In honour of Helmut Kohl
People have no respect
Nonsense and insanity
Pensions are not safe
Serial Merkel
Bad, bad, bad
People are not ...
Kohl’s merits
Deliberate false statements
Outwardly fine, inwardly...
DDBRD!
Gabriel goes underground?
Kohl’s Ghost
Hopeless bankruptcy delay
Open for business
Outcry against the ESM
2nd Outcry against the ESM
Fiscal Pact
Government bonds
ESM
Germany is bankrupt
Loss of democracy
Deception of investors
Merkel Referendum
The election in NRW
Ongoing election campaign
The aberrations of E. Pols
Speaking ban
Criminal complaints
Fear of publicity
Top experts
Real, direct democracy
Get rid of German President
Back-door politics
Competition for the office
Angela's wrinkles
Vultures gather
2011- System correction
Rating Agency Foundation
Contact men
Leading politicians
Transfer union
Membership fees
Referendum S21
Business–Banks–Politics
Misplaced doctors
State Trojan horses
Petitions ignored
The lever effect
Bonds by the ECB
Member states
No access
Political lobbyism
Conditions like in the East
Transparency
Sponsorship funds
Development aid
The transfer procedure
GER is doing itself away
Rescue packages
Supercrash in USA and EU
The 'Soli'-Lie
Vladimir Putin
A plea for direct democracy
Distrust of the Chancellor
More control
Flight of capital
Euro summit
It's war
The C in CDU and CSU
Deceit and lies
Germany getting screwed
Investments in countries
The illusion of a ...
General statements
Democracy-...-Dictatorship
GER-insurance society
Debt brake
Costs of members
Deceit and lies
Retirement provision
Medal of Freedom
Euro-thugs / Polit-thugs
We are the people
Security authorities
National debt and ...
Apology from the bankers
The Merkel Adventure
Party Competences
Chancellor
The East-Mark, ... ,Euro
Sister Merkel
Ruck-Rede & Oath of Office
The casino operation
Rescue Reactor
Euro rescue
Japan
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