The Bertelsmann Foundation of the Mohn family has become the most effective player in the German Political Poker over the years
"All power comes from the people" – The Volkssouveranitat is one of the cornerstones of democracy. But in a modern democracy like Germany actually all power from the people? The Federal Republic of Germany is a representative democracy – the Wahler makes his cross on the ballot and legitimizes his cross on the ballot to fifty years and thus legitimizes a representative of the power in his name. In a living democracy, the burger were also involved in the decision-making and the political decision-making processes of his reprintageants directly. However, German democracy is not that alive. The Wahler makes his cross and then take over the modern opinion maker – Think tanks, association and foundations.
The world power from Garterloh
When the Bertelsmann Group celebrated its 175th anniversary these days, the festivities remembered a state act rather than a corporate anniversary – a very friendly laudatio of Angela Merkel, 1.000 celebrities from business, society and politics, including the Who’s Who of the German and international political article, such as EU Commission Prospective Jose Manuel Barroso. No question, Bertelsmann is not only a world group, but also a political company (the Bertelsmann Foundation and the Oconomisisation of Politics).
However, the burger on the strain connects named Bertelsmann mostly only the book club of the same name, which is prasent with his branches in most German city. In the Gross Bertelsmann-Reich, however, the book club is only a small, relatively insignificant cycle.
Bertelsmann was a provincial publisher before the Second World War, especially Christian editing literature in his repertoire. In the third Reich, Bertelsmann became one of the largest German publishers under the SS honorary member Heinrich poppy. The program now consisted mainly in blood and floor literature with a rabid anti-Semitism for the rural leaders on the front. With a fragile circumstances, publishing license of the British occupation zone in the bag, Reinhard poppy built the company with shallow content again in the post-war period.
Bertelsmann’s readering and the Musikverlag Ariola, who made millions with the records of Heintje, were the foundation stone on which the company’s cartriarch Reinhard poppy built a world group with a successful expansion strategy. Today, Bertelsmann is the large European media company – via the RTL Group control the Garter’s German Private Nor RTL, RTL II, VOX, Super-RTL and N-TV, Uber Gruner + Year is Bertelsmann with publications such as the star, the Financial Times Germany or active in the print area active. Also on Spiegel-Verlag Bertelsmann Uber Gruner + Year with a blocking minority of 25.5% is involved. Classical publishing work is summarized today in the publishing group Random House – the large public publisher in the world is a 100% subsidiary of Bertelsmann AG and was able to achieve a million profit over his division DVA with the book of Thilo Sarrazin.
But Bertelsmann AG is more than a pure media group. With the Group subsidiary Arvato, the over 60.000 employees, Bertelsmann Marktfuhrer is in the territory of the outsourcing of administrative instances (Arvato relies on privatization of state services).
How far the range of services from Arvato goes, the work of the company shows in the county East Riding in Yorkshire. There Avarto has taken the public administration in 2005. Since then, the private company operates the Burgerburo on behalf of the state, decides on the allocation of social housing, drives the taxes and shares government benefits such as social assistance or study benefits. 500 employees of the public service were – with occupational guarantee – from Avarto took over.
But privatization of the public service obviously does not work as it has been presented by Bertelsmann. The Gutterslobers posed the British with the promise to create 600 new jobs in the county. From the 600 only 176 have become, and even these jobs are already relating to the disposition – instead, the former staff of the public service, which are uncertain, do the work of other avarto areas with doing. Bertelsmann is – no matter how good or bad avarto works in East Riding – the winner of such privatization. Bubbling the profits, a back is only possible with a high investment requirement for the municipalities.
Foundation law ad absurdum
About the daughter Avarto, the Bertelsmann Group is thus one of the gross profits of one "Delivery of the state". However, Bertelsmann pays with its Denkfabrik Bertelsmann Foundation at the same time to the most effective drummers of a neoliberal policy that "slender state" The goal has (under the guise of the recovery).
To save inheritance taxes, reasoned Reinhard poppen already in 1977 the Bertelsmann Foundation. Today, the Bertelsmann Foundation on paper has 77.4% of Bertelsmann AG – Conservative Scatzt this corresponds to a volume of around 8 billion euros. The rest of Bertelsmann AG belongs to the family poppy, which consists of the death of Reinhard poppy from its widow and Merkel-duzfriendin Liz poppy and her shared daughter Brigitte poppy. However, the poppy family also has the say in the Bertelsmann Foundation and controls the Bertelsmann AG 100%.
Due to the double-foundation construct, the family poppy has not only inheritance or inheritance. Thinking tax saved – the profits and dividends that are excluded all-yearly, must also not be taxed thanks to foundation status. This is an open luck in German foundation law, a cheek that Bertelsmann already saved billions – billions that were actually due to the German state and thus the people. In a transparent democracy one had already closed such a control loophole, but Bertelsmann is in Germany "untouchable", How the former Grunen politician Antje Vollmer expressed in an interview.
Power without mandate
The Bertelsmann Foundation is a state in the state. She calls for publicly behavior a highest time to transparency, but itself is so intransparent, like just any possible. It calls for more competition, but gives your funding only for your own projects and thus ends any competition for your own foundation funds.
Claim and reality drifting in the Bertelsmann Foundation far apart. According to German foundation law, a tax-exempt Foundation must serve the common good. The Bertelsmann Foundation, however, is one of the most powerful domain organizations of neoliberalism, and in addition to ideological goals, it also pursues tough economic interests for the founder family. For example, the Bertelsmann Foundation belonged to the large critics of state broadcasting supervision under the slope of the press freedom – with the aim of stronger the Bertelsman sender of the RTL Group opposite the public broadcasting.
The favorite topic of the Bertelsmann Foundation is and remains the lean state – Bertelsmann, with his group subsidiary Avarto, is already in the starting pokes in order to earn a golden nose in the privatization of state functions.
You just look in the light
The Bertelsmann Foundation works with preference behind the scenes. The sovereign debt must be reduced to zero? A high state quota is pollptive? The more public tasks are delegated to private companies, the more efficient is this for the general public? The slimmer the state, the better this is for the people?
How are these neo-liberal sham wellrests and who supplies the representatives of this ideology with numbers and reasoning aids? If one sees a politician in a television anti-neoliberal argumentation pattern, these thoughts with some likelihood probably not the brain of the relevant people representative, but the brain of a neoliberal Think tanks like the Bertelsmann Foundation. Bertelsmann Schult and Beratz politics – from the city chamber to the World Bank and the IMF.
The favorite tool of the Bertelsmanners are rankings – starting at elementary school, about the commune, the university to the whole economy. Bertelsmann raises data and creates home lists. The parameters for success on these lists are very simple – the less state, the less administration, per slimmer, per private, the better. Despite her obvious ideological color, the rankings from Bertelsmann with amazing regularity find their way into the media and politics.
Anyone who can not or wants to participate in the competition for more neoliberalism is in the light of the openity as "Reform denigerator", "Modernization" or "Nightlike" there. The Bertelsmann Foundation was one of the transducers behind Schroders Agenda 2010, she is also seen in the party headquarters of Union and FDP as well as the SPD and the Greats. No matter what the burger elements, the men and women from Garterloh already sit as a consultant next to the new government.
The World of the Bertelsmanner is a world of steady location competition, which gains the one who opposes the interests of the economy in the strongest. There is almost overflowed that the model shoulder of the Bertelsmann Transformation Index were now almost exclusively swept by the financial and economic crisis in 2006. This is probably the price to pay the economies for the influencing attempts from Garterloh.
All power comes from the people
Bertelsmann and the Bertelsmann Foundation are – in the worst sense of the word – postdemocratic. The interests of the family poppy are not coverable with the interests of the people. How can you cut the power without mandate and produce the people’s benefit? In a reproachful democracy that is not easy. How should Lieschen Muller recognize a danger for democracy if they do not even know the danger?
Despite the influential and democracy threatening position of opinion makers from Garterloh, there is no public discourse over the associated dangers. No coarse newspaper, no coarse magazine and no quota-strong TV format dares to approach this heater theme – a media crake does not attach to the other. But where the fourth violence failed, unpackages can not be remedied. The chances that Bertelsmann can also shape the next 175 years of politics, are apparently good. This is not good news for democracy.