German anti-refugee vote leaves Merkel in a political mess: Don Murray - CBC.caThursday, December 22, 2016
Winning back that trust may not be easy. Consider the experience of the people of Doberlug-Kirchhain, a town of 8,700 in eastern Germany.
Just down the road was an abandoned military base. Last year, as the refugees poured into the country, someone in the national government remembered the abandoned base. They could house hundreds of refugees there.
German Family Minister Manuela Schwesig helps children climb through a window at a refugee shelter in Berlin on June 21. Germany has absorbed the mass influx of refugees in the last year relatively smoothly, although the sudden arrival of hundreds of thousands of Muslims and the money spent to accommodate them has left Germans unsettled and frequently furious. (Reuters)
And so they did, first transforming the barracks into living quarters for families, with playgrounds and playing fields. They also repaired the road into town with new traffic lights and laid on a shuttle bus for refugees so they could go to buy groceries.
Very generous, but badly received by the local population which had just lost their bus service because of state cutbacks. Different budget envelopes, as the accountants say.
Things weren't improved when the first question many refugees asked was, "Where's the train station?" They wanted to live in cities like Berlin or Frankfurt.
'Send the bill to Merkel'
The mood soured even more when some refugees, having stocked up on groceries in the local supermarket, told the cashier, "Send the bill to Merkel." And then walked out.
The police, anxious to avoid trouble, told the supermarket to swallow the loss if it was less than $75.
A year later the family quarters are almost all unused, the playgrounds empty. The more than 700 refugees who first arrived have dwindled to 125, almost all young men without families. And they want to leave, too.
Not surprisingly, the town is very receptive to the anti-migrant message of AfD. The mood, one person said, is: Merkel deserved the kicking she got in the state vote.
Emergency shelters stand empty
At a national level, it should be said, the mass influx has been absorbed relatively smoothly. Almost all the new arrivals have found regular housing. Hundreds of emergency shelters now stand empty.
Tens of thousands of refugees are in German-language courses. The problem is to find enough teachers. And because of language difficulties, unemployment among officially recognized refugees is still very high. But they receive generous social benefits.
And despite fears, particularly in the wake of the Cologne New Year's Eve sexual attacks on women, the overall crime rate has not jumped. In fact, the main spike is caused by attacks on refugees themselves.
Syrian refugees learn to reconstruct houses at a military education centre in Ingolstadt, Germany on Sept. 1. Germany is training refugees in the hope that they will eventually be able to help rebuild their homeland. (Associated Press)
But statistics do not calm fears. The sudden arrival of hundreds of thousands of Muslims and the money spent to accommodate them has left Germans unsettled and frequently furious.
Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania is one of the country's smaller states by population (the Germans call them Laender and there are 16 of them) but the AfD won almost 21 per cent of the vote. A minor political earthquake.
For decades German elections have been dull affairs, earnest discussions of taxes, wages and health care. In this atmosphere Merkel was the perfect leader.
Political experts note and mainstream politicians fear that the Mecklenburg vote may herald a new era.
"The AfD cleverly used the refugee theme to 'emotionalize' the debate," said Christian Nestler, a political scientist at the University of Rostock.
The Austrian spectr...http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/germany-angela-merkel-refugees-1.3753669
MALHEUR MOVERS: Vale native builds business to make community blossom - malheurenterprise.comSunday, January 26, 2020
El Campo was once a routine happening in Vale but it declined over time and eventually disappeared. Rodriguez said she remembered going to the carnival as a child and linked up with Todd and Kale Hesse to revive the event.“It was time for our generation to pick it up,” said Rodriguez.Rodriguez said creating small coalitions within the community is crucial. Rodriguez said while she is involved with the community, she is just one of a large number of people who strive to make Vale a great place to live.“These community events only go on because of volunteers,” said Rodriguez. “We are surrounded by a lot of people in this community who like to give.”Rodriguez said her civic involvement can trace its roots to her youth, where she watched members of the community step up and help on a regular basis. Plus, she said, Vale has been good to her.“The community has been amazing to me,” said Rodriguez.Rodriguez and her husband, TJ, both aim to ensure their children, Thomas, Zettie, Tristan and Trent, learn how to give back to their town.Good role models, said Rodriguez, are important. “My parents, they were always giving,” said Rodriguez.The best part of her life and her business, said Rodriguez, is the people.“I get to meet some amazing people and I can go home and be blessed,” said Rodriguez.She said she also likes the variety her shop generates.“Every day there is something very interesting, every day is different,” she said.Letting people down on their orders is her worst fear, said Rodriguez.“That’s hard for me,” she said.Rodriguez said she likes her role as a local businesswoman and a volunteer.“I feel I have to do my job and if that (volunteering) is my job in this world while I am here, I will take that job,” said Rodriguez.News tip? Contact reporter Pat Caldwell: firstname.lastname@example.org or 541-473-3377. For the latest news, follow the Enterprise on Facebook and Twitter.SUBSCRIBE TO HELP PRODUCE VITAL REPORTING -- For $5 a month, you get breaking news alerts, emailed newsletters and around-the-clock access to our stories. We depend on subscribers to pay for in-depth, accurate news produced by a professional and highly trained staff. Help us grow and get better with your subscription. Sign up HERE.
Shirley A. Grover – Cedar Rapids,formerly Independence – Mix 94.7 KMCH - kmch.comSunday, January 26, 2020
In her quiet time, she enjoyed reading and flowers.
Mrs. Grover is survived by 2 sons, Mike (Vicky) Grover of Cedar Rapids and Mark (Jason Hesse) Grover of Coralville, Iowa, 2 daughters, Patricia (Keith) Grover of Mountain View, California, and Beth (Danny) Hinde of Cedar Rapids, 2 grandchildren, Travis Grover and Josh Hinde, and 4 great granddaughters.
In addition to her husband, she was preceded in death by her parents and 1 brother, Paul.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, January 24, 2020, at St. John’s Catholic Church in Independence. Rev. David Beckman will be the Celebrant. Burial will be in Rowley Cemetery in Rowley. Friends may call for visitation from 3 p.m. until 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 23rd , at the White Funeral Home in Independence. On line condolences may be left at www.White-MtHope.com.
The perfect destination foHere is why Germany is the perfect destination for your next holidayr your holiday! Discover nature in Germany - Emirates WomanSunday, January 26, 2020
Alps are characterised by green trees and extensive forests.Rhön UNESCO Biosphere Reserve: at the corner of the three German states, Bavaria, Hesse and ThuringiaThe Rhôn hills are located in the heart of Germany and offer a wide range of beautiful views! And if you are a fan of athletic activities, you can try gliding, water sports, and indulge in a spot of star gazing.Jasmund National Park Mecklenburg-Western Pomeraniait takes you right along the cliffs and features enough natural treasures for several holidays. White chalk cliffs, lush beech forests and the shimmering blue of the sea. You’ll catch sight of a rare white-tailed eagle circling in the skies, while far below a thousand different species of beetle scuttle through the undergrowth in this landscape of contrasts.Black Forest National Park, Baden-Württemberg, South GermanyPerfect for cleansing your lungs. The remarkable feature of this national park is that some areas have been able to develop for more than 100 years without human intervention. This means that all the animals and plants that are found here live in authentic, natural surroundings.You can use Deutsche Bahn trains all over Germany, where it uses 100% green energy. In addition, you can take the InterCity Express for a unique experience, as it is a high-speed train that connects all major cities in Germany with speeds of up to 300 km / hour, and this is one of the fastest ways to reach between Berlin, Hamburg and Cologne!Check out their Instagram: GermanyTourismAr, and Facebook: Germany Tourism Arabia– For more about Dubai’s lifestyle, news and fashion scene straight to your newsfeed, follow us on Facebook Media: Supplied...https://emirateswoman.com/germany/
Berlin moves to greatly reduce ‘solidarity tax’ for eastern Germany - EuronewsTuesday, August 20, 2019
We'd better invest this money in education and climate protection."Thorsten Schäfer-Gümbel, parliamentary party and state leader of the SPD in Hesse, also supports Scholz.What is the Soli tax?The solidarity surcharge was introduced in 1991, to help reconstruction of the east following the reunification of Germany in the wake of the fall of the Berlin Wall.The tax was originally supposed to be in place only for a limited time but became permanent in 1995.Initially, the solidarity rate was 7.5%, but since 1995 it has been 5.5%. In addition, the surcharge has been unlimited since 1995.Contrary to some assumptions, taxpayers in the west and east have to pay the tax.According to the Ministry of Finance, in 2018 the German state received €18.9 billion as a result.Criticism of the billAccording to the Ministry of Finance, single people with an annual gross income of up to €73,874 would not have to pay anything. From €109,451 gross annual wages, the full supplement would have to be paid.Accordingly, a family with two children and an annual income of €221,375 or more would have to pay the full solidarity surcharge. Families earning less than €151,990 gross would be exempt from the solidarity surcharge.If the draft is adopted, German citizens would then have to pay around €10 billion less in tax.Criticism comes from parties outside the coalition. Katja Kipping of Die Linke said that the CDU/CSU and SPD were making politics for the rich with their proposal.FDP General Secretary Linda Teuteberg wrote on Twitter: "The Soli is unconstitutional for everyone from 2020. So it must also be abolished for everyone. Our constitution also applies to those who in reality want tax increases, and there you have to choose the normal procedures and not the back door."Many citizens on social networks are also outraged by the fact that they still have to pay the solidarity surcharge. "The solidarity surcharge was introduced in 1991 for a limited period of one year. I believed that," wrote a user on Twitter.https://www.euronews.com/2019/08/13/berlin-moves-to-greatly-reduce-solidarity-tax-for-eastern-germany