Agenda 2010: social policy as a weapon

Agenda 2010: Social policy as a weapon

15 years Hartz reforms – Part II

With the "Agenda 2010" The Red-Grune government under Gerhard Schroder wanted to rebuild the German welfare state crucial. It should not be programmatically one of the many "small" Acting reforms with which their transactions the German social policy and in particular social security in the last two decades to the new functional requirements or. had adapted fiscal necessities (Part I: 15 years Hartz reforms. A socio-political "Paradigm change" has become self-consuming). The claim of "agenda" Was different and basic.

The Schroder government demanded something like a liberation from its reform to the highly recurring cash ies of all social security. Above all, however, she wanted to affect the national wage level with them that the business location Germany, who was a bit in the international competition, in Europe and on the meanwhile "globalized" World market again successfully passed.

Germany was at this time in a structural crisis characterized by high unemployment, growth weak and financially supervised social systems. The land was internationally considered the weak man of Europe. Agenda 2010 was the answer to the challenges of globalization and demographic development through an aging population.

Gerhard Schroder, Chancellor, SPD

There is no way past these reforms in view of the Europeanization and globalization.

Wolfgang Clement

practical constraint "globalization"

With the keyword "globalization" Western politicians denote the state since the beginning of the 1990s – the time when the Soviet Union is "socialist block" Squad and opened the free business with the West. Since then, the entire globe for you one Free business sphare in which no relevant country (the last exceptions may be north Korea and, with restrictions, Cuba and Weibussland) more the freedom of trade and capital transport.

In order to force this condition, the states of the West, whose economic principle is the propagation of capital and therefore need barrier and boundless expansion of their growth, wanted many smaller cohes and a rough Cold War. So it is by no means so that they are with the "globalization" a practical constraint see you do not want. On the contrary, they have a lot of money and violence, including an extraordinary root, which is ensured that the whole globe is available for competition and growth of their capital. Inside your nations, you value the requirements of this competition as "Compulsion of globalization" (of an allegedly anonymous subject) to claim to with this argument of supposed powerlessness of their society all the potential painful "Stitching processes" be powerful.

The well-carced destination hob: the location Germany for the "globalized world economy" (again) make competing. "Competitive" means for German politicians: in this competition to stand at the top – you do not know another claim. The appropriate means for more German competitiveness recognized them – as they had read Marx – in lowering the German wage level.

The cost of social security, keyword: wage labor costs, and the fundamental transformation of the "encrusted" German labor market published for this as Adaquate starting points. In other words, to come to an overall lower national wage level, the Red-Grune government set the lever in motion, which were socially released.


In pension insurance, two drastic changes should ensure that the pension fund "stable function" Without the insurances of the insurance contribution to burden the employers about the wage labor costs: the preparation of the retirement age to 67 years and the introduction of the so-called. "demographic factor" (2004). The latter lowered the pension level from 53 to 43 percent in 2030. The hedging level – compared to the earned income – sank around approx. a fifth.

In addition, the increased retirement age for lower pensions caused many wage dependers to work as long as they had to get their full pension. Prematurely worn, they have been retiring since then withdrawing from 3.6% per year – their income decreased by another 14.4%, if they wanted to leave work with 63 (prior entry age) from work or had to.

With the mAB brutal impoverishment of the wage deposited population and (artificial) pensioners, the rulers were confident: the insured were invited not to rely on the statutory pension insurance and providing private for their age. The state demanded "Riester pension" and other offers of the insurance industry "oconomic" The social emergency so that the statutory pension is definitely no longer enough to live: what the wage dependent on the basis of this socio-political redefinition should now have to save / must simultaneously resume as a usable contribution in the country’s financial system – shares, life insurance, House buying on credit.

It is certainly not without further ado that the dependents funded privately financing a passable age fuse privately from their worthwhile. This was finally the reason for the introduction of a statutory pension insurance! And that’s all the more, as the other reforms of the Agenda 2010, do by no means ensure that the leans rise. No wonder so that Old-age poverty Since then a continuous theme is. No wonder that this "problem" Once again the welfare state "Solution" is recommended – just as if he had nothing to do with his conclusion. "Millions of people have to live with mini-pensions – the policy is looking for the solution of the problem" For example, the Westfalish round show in 2011 wrote sick against logic and history of pension reform under the title bar: "What to do against old-age poverty?"

The objective and subjective consequences of this social field trial were and are considerable. Pensioners saw each other to make money with (naturally paid) mini-jobs because they can not live from their pension. Bottle collecting old ones were in Germany for the normality in the strain picture. The policy is currently discussing that, given the rising vitality of pensioners, a further increase in retirement age is being discussed; With the goods you arrived at the starting age, the Bismarck had started 130 years ago. Last but not least: With its poorer position of the pensions, Germany gave the starting signal for a European undercutting competition.

Labor market policy

In the labor market policy, it was essentially about two goals: to reduce costs for the unemployed and a fundamental redesign of the labor market.

German Capitalism pointed around the millennium to about 5 million officially collected unemployed. These were, as already stated, essentially the success of the German companies and the state, namely rationalization investment, with which German entrepreneurs have reduced their payroll costs and improved their competitors – which naturally included the ruin of some competitors – as well as the integration of the DDR Economy in Westdeutsche Economy (Part I).

Since these unemployment numbers were no longer significant in economic upswing phases, the German government was wrongly amed that a gross part of this unemployed is permanently overflowing among the conditions given: they are no longer needed for the production of the steady rising wealth in Germany.

For illustration, the example of Opel Bochum: 1990 produces the work with nearly 20.000 workers; In 2012 there are still 3.500 – and these can not produce less, but more cars. If the supply of the population was produced, the gain of time and wealth for all would be produced. In the market economy for profit, the much hudded "technical progress" By contrast, as a rising number of labor and income-free.

In view of this development, it made no sense from the state point of view, all foreseeable permanent or. To treat long-term unemployed as if they were only a stimulus phenomena. Of the "analytical" Differentiation between frictional and structural unemployment was followed as a political differentiation of unemployment benefit I and II. The costs incurred so far – unemployment benefit and unemployment benefits – should necessarily reduced will.

The Red-Grune government stroked the unemployment assistance, which was previously a pay rate (53 or. 57 percent of the net salary, permanent) complete and made the unemployment benefit massively

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