Father State is not only dear to us, he is also a bit crazy. As if he were in a state of mental derangement, he is currently not fighting the shortage of skilled workers, but rather the work itself.
Father State is probably thinking in practical terms: if you eliminate work and income from work, you no longer need skilled workers. This most radical of all solutions, the shrinking of industrial society, would certainly be good for the CO2 footprint of our economy.
Here is a finely tuned 7-point program that should not fail to have an impact on the job market. One might think that surrealism has left the museum:
In view of geopolitical ambitions in Europe, it is imperative that inflation continue to shoot up. The fluffy interest rate hike policy of the ECB is doing a good job here, unlike the tough American approach. Because inflation not only makes life more expensive, it also devalues labor as a commodity. In the past, you had less net from the gross due to the tax. Now you have – and that’s the highlight – even less of the net.
You prevent inflation compensation in regular wages. Lo and behold, the bottom line is a veritable loss of real wages.
One ensures that inflation rises particularly sharply, especially in the case of everyday necessities. Plus 19.2 percent for food, plus 22.3 percent for fuel. The increase in the minimum wage, which looks significant on its own, is consequently shredded at the shop counter. Respect!
Social security benefits are cut again and again, which were actually not intended as alms, but as compensation payments for the major life risks: there is a new co-payment in the pharmacy, there is a small pension deduction. This reduces the value of the worker’s insurance certificate. The promised reward for life’s work melts away like a cooling soufflé.
You create a wage replacement benefit with the citizen money, which is pretty close to the first income from work. According to the DGB, a family with two children (eight and ten years) and a sole earner with a minimum wage of 12 euros per month has a disposable income of 2867 euros. A family receiving citizen’s income comes with a standard rate of 1598 euros and a rent including heating of 751 euros to 2349 euros. Even Marcel Fratzscher, President of the DIW and proponent of citizen income, wonders “whether the difference in income between working and non-working people is too small.” In the spirit of our program to destroy work, one can only say: we did everything right.
As an extra bonus, people who do not earn high wages in the labor market are granted a high level of protection. A married couple with two children should definitely have 150,000 euros in cash in their savings accounts, plus a pension policy, two cars and an owner-occupied condominium of any size. Only then may the solidarity community ask for a deductible. The spare assets as a bonus for not working, as a kind of bonus mile for not moving – a really original idea.
Last but not least: It is essential to create a legal two-tier system that favors those who refuse to perform. So allow the long-term unemployed for six months to refuse a new job offer or a training course without giving a reason. The whole thing is called “trust time”. However, it is important to ensure that craftsmen and the self-employed do not show any mercy when it comes to official deadlines or errors in the tax return. Here mistrust is the first duty of the authorities. It’s the difference that counts.
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Conclusion: Of all government programs, this is the most effective. Father State doesn’t know what he’s doing, but he does it consistently. And maybe – be granted it – he even smoked a little in anticipation of the planned cannabis release.
Gabor Steingart is one of the best-known journalists in the country. He publishes the newsletter The Pioneer Briefing. The podcast of the same name is Germany’s leading daily podcast for politics and business. Since May 2020, Steingart has been working with his editorial staff on the ship “The Pioneer One”. Before founding Media Pioneer, Steingart was, among other things, Chairman of the Management Board of the Handelsblatt Media Group. You can subscribe to his free newsletter here.
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