After Germany’s Merkel Comes Chaos

After Germany’s Merkel Comes Chaos, by John Rubino.

After a long, initially-successful run promoting European integration and mass immigration, German Chancellor Angela Merkel saw the bottom fall out of her political fortunes this year. This morning she stepped down as leader of the formerly-dominant Christian Democrat party and promised not run again when her term as Chancellor ends in 2021.

Note that in August of 2017 the two least popular parties were the far right Alternative for Germany (blue line) and the far left Greens (green line). In the ensuing 14 or so months AfG’s support rose from single digits to around 17% while the Greens rocketed from the bottom of the pack to 20%.

If you didn’t know what these two parties stood for you might think, “Fine, they’re new and interesting, so let them form a coalition and govern for a while.”

Unfortunately they’re more likely to kill each other in street fights than work together, since the former want closed borders and free markets while the latter want increased regulation and unlimited immigration.

The alternative to an AfG/Green coalition then becomes some combination of the remaining, more centrist (by European standards at least) parties. But the biggest of those parties – Merkel’s Christian Democrats and their coalition partner Social Democrats – are in freefall, precisely because of what they’ve done while in power.

So there appears to be no way to put these puzzle pieces together to produce a stable government. …

The next few years for Europe:

A stable Germany under Merkel’s bland but firm hand has been the only thing holding the European Union and eurozone together. If Germany descends into internal turmoil without a coherent government to push the Italys and Hungarys around, European populists/nationalists will fill the resulting vacuum. Borders will be re-imposed within and without the EU, national government budgets — already above EU deficit limits in many cases — will explode. Already-debilitating debts will keep rising, and the ECB will be forced to bail out Italy for sure and probably several other member states after that.