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  • Konrad Werner: An explanation of the Jamaica coalition fiasco


Konrad Werner: An explanation of the Jamaica coalition fiasco

The Jamaica coalition was always a homunculus – dead because it was never supposed to live.

Image for Konrad Werner: An explanation of the Jamaica coalition fiasco

Christian Linder. Photo by Martin Kraft (photo.martinkraft.com) Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Talks of the Jamaica coalition failed spectacularly yesterday and with the SPD still refusing to form a coalition, another election is on the horizon. But what the hell happened? Konrad has a word or two on it…

Here’s what you need to know, or at least here’s a baseline of opinion for you to build your own prejudices and complaints on: FDP head Christian Lindner is a massive stubborn bastard who destroyed the annoyingly named “Jamaica” coalition because he is too cynical for politics.

That is, if by politics you mean running a country with human beings in it, which real people have to survive and live vaguely decent lives in. Christian Lindner did this because he thought – and he always thought this – that he can sell his political organization, or the social media strategy that he still calls the “Free Democratic Party” and that he presides over like a leech on an arm, in a more profitable way from outside government.

Lindner could easily have made this coalition work if he’d wanted to (he was even conspicuously unable to say what point of principle his party couldn’t get behind on Monday), given that his party is a cipher. The FDP isn’t a real political party, it’s a clickbait analysis tool led by a Tinder profile. Angela Merkel unfortunately failed to notice this in time.

Before these coalition talks began, everyone assumed that the gap between the CSU and the Greens would be too wide – the CSU, after all, had an election to fight in Bavaria, and had just lost 10+ percentage points to the AfD, while the Greens have vaguely left-progressive principles. But in the end, while the CSU and the Greens made concessions on migration policy, the FDP decided that its brand – “the AfD for ad execs” – needed to be protected. 

Not that the Jamaica coalition would have been a “good” government. But it would have been an actual government. It would have been something people with an attention span could talk about. Now we’ve been dragged onto a false surface of Twitter talk and insignificance. Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue.