During my last bike trip this autumn from Munich via Salzburg, St. Johann i.P., Bad Gastein, Villach, Tarvisio, Udine to Grado, the night in Prien on the Chiemsee was the least expensive.  In former times, the beautiful places in Bavaria used to be much more expensive than the just as beautiful places in the then “Schilling” country Austria or in the “Lira” paradise Italy.

Those days are gone. Hotels in Bavaria were the cheapest of all.

On the local markets in the “stress-countries” like Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain, the victuals really cost money. Local beer is no longer less expensive than imported beer. In fact, the opposite is true. And you can get the VW Polo for less than here – at least if you believe what the posters say.

The cost is no longer very different, but the incomes differ hugely.

How is that supposed to work? When the “GDR” was incorporated into Germany, the problems were similar. It was clear that most companies would instantly have to liquidate if the incomes in the GDR were to rise.

Regardless, we introduced the DM in the GDR and adapted the incomes up to 90%. We accepted the possible ruin of the companies, because we believed a two-class society in one country cannot work. We paid dearly for it. With borrowed money. And with the  “Soli”, which – to my surprise – is to be lowered now of all times.

But what worked for the GDR more badly than rightly cannot work for Europe. We cannot introduce standard incomes close to our own for all the people in Europe. Too many European economies are similarly ruined as the GDR was. And there are no reserves you could fall back on, either. All the countries are already indebted up to their eyes as it is.

The attempt at unifying Europe by a measure as trivial as a common currency was not just naïve, but even grossly negligent. Basically, what we did was extending the DM to all countries, as we did to the GDR before. Except that it got a new name.

I am afraid it did more damage than good to Europe

(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Sunday October 30th, 2011

Unifying Europe – It Is Nowhere Near As Easy As It Sounds

I like travelling. Often, I do it quite independently: the two of us with our bikes. In this way, I see a lot and get in closer contact with people than you are if I were using other forms of tourism. I can certainly confirm that the proverb “tarvelling (by bike) is an education“ is correct. On my travels, I learned a lot.

Among other things, I learned that a unified Europe can only work if it is a liberal federation of regions. Powerful national states are no help, they endanger a Europe made up of friends. The Europe and EURO centrism is also poison for a European union of the people.

In Europe, the social life is too multi-cultural and too rich in facettes. You cannot force some huge unitarism on those people. Europe’s citizens are too intelligent to give up their characteristics for a national Europe and dreams of great power. Fortunately, we do not have an exaltation like “God’s Own Country” (USA). Ideological and nationalistic visions of European superhumans are hard to imagine for Europe.

Even the Euro made no difference in that respect. There are many huge problems. One of them is the difference in income among European countries. A young lady with a “standard“ qualification gets between 2,000 and 3,000 Euros per month in Germany. Also in countries like Denmark, France, The Netherlands, Norway and Sweden, chances are quite good for her to earn reasonably well. It gets harder in Italy.

The same lady with similar qualifications will get a maximum of 20 % of this in the Baltic countries or Poland, in Romania, Slovakia, the Czech Republic or Hungary. This is true both for the EURO countries and the European countries. Yet the cost of living in the different countries do not differ to the same extent as the incomes. Especially the countries with the lowest income have an extremely high inflation rate. That is true both for the European countries where you pay with the EURO and those where you do not. Germany is inexpensive, the others have become more expensive.

Europe will not merge if seasonal workers migrate through Europe as lowest-income nomads. Nor will it unify if young women from countries with low average incomes prostitute themselves in the rich European countries.

(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Saturday October 29th, 2011

What Annoys Me … #16 Mothers Chatting While Driving a Car

🙂 Today, I will grouch about the trendy and beautiful super mothers.

I see them every day as I go to work. They sit in SUVs or other luxury limousines. You can clearly see how surprised they are at seeing a grown-up riding a bike in this kind of weather. But they also always look a little frightened or angry. It depends on whether they fear they might cause an accident with me – or whether they think bikers really have no business riding on such narrow streets …


Of course, this article is extremely misogynic!


I hereby apologize in advance to all mothers and women who ever want to become mothers.
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Dear If blog readers,

the next IF forum gives me a reason to write these “bi-weekly news”:

On Friday, November, 18th, 2011, at the usual time, Herr Dr. habil Walter Riess will speak in the third and last IF forum of the year 2011. His topic is

Nano Technology – The Future of IT

Herr Dr. Riess is head of the department “Science & Technology” at Zürich IBM Research GmbH. I very much look forward to his presentation. There are still places available. We will meet at 6 p.m. in the IF building, the presentation starts at 6.15 p.m. If you are interested, just contct me.

For more information on this presentation, click on IF-Open (http://www.interface-ag.com/open/) under

My next presentation in Munich will be during the EAA colloquium „Current Developments in Technology and Business“. It is about:

Of Projects, Leadership and Management – It Is Always About Humans Interacting …

This presentation is on November, 3rd, at 1815 hours. The location is lecture hall 33/0101 of the University of the Armed Forces at Neubiberg. I am permitted to invite guests and would be delighted to welcome many of you. For details, send me an E-Mail.

I am truly happy about having managed to make more presentations by Rupert Lay available on youtube. Two presentations he held in 1997 on the Ronneburg, on both “Ronneburger Sundays” for the Ronneburger Kreis are about.

“Looking for Meaning in a Complex World” of April, 20th, 
“Globalization – Catastrophe or Chance“ of September,16th.
These presentations are very special. You will really benefit from taking a look at the videos. The easiest way is to follow the following links:

And, of course, I will be truly delighted if you visit my IF Blog (IF-Blog.de) once in a while, or just enter the Posts (http://if-blog.de/posts/).

So here are my best wishes for the weekend full of Golden October Days to you and many thanks to all the readers of this email!

Roland Dürre

Roland Dürre
Thursday October 27th, 2011

Oh My, Oh My!

This morning, two items of news seemed important to me. Firstly, Greece will only have to pay back half of its debts. They get a debt cut of 50 %. Our Federal Chancellor called it “Haircut” when I saw her live.

Well, where does this “New-German-English” word Haircut come from? The Greeks certainly will not get their hair cut. You could say more like the opposite. On the other hand, I understand the word “Cut”. Whenever I sit over my beer in the Forschungsbrauerei, they say it when the last litre of Doppelbock has been poured and it was a little too much, after all. Then you only get half a litre.

It is still not quite clear how the debt cut is supposed to be realized. Will the tax payer pay it directly, or will it be indirectly through the banks? In any case, it will be expensive.

Secondly, I now hear that Italy promised to economize drastically. They announced terrible savings measures. Of course, the first protests and resistance are also already visible. Regardless of the fact that nobody really believes the Italian government will force or be able to realize all those measures.

This morning, the DAX climbed immediately. I can understand that. After all, what to do with the money? Inflation is threatening – and in a case like that, investing in enterprises is perhaps not the poorest choice.

But still – I am horror-stricken!

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Here are my tweets of last week on
Blogging and Twitter, Wisdoms and Rules:

111110 You have to take some words with a pinch of salt – or is this perhaps not true for twittering and blogging? #Twitter #Blogging #Wisdom

111111 You have to take everything into consideration – the same is true for twittering and blogging! #Twitter #Blogging #Wisdom

111112 You have to take what life hands you – all twitterers and bloggers know this. #Twitter #Blogging #Wisdom

111113 If you want to finish early, you have to rise early – also true for twittering and blogging! #Twitter #Blogging #Wisdom

111114 You have to cut hair where it grows – also true for twittering and blogging. #Twitter #Blogging #Wisdom

111115 You have to grow eyes both in front and behind – especially true for twitterers and bloggers. #Twitter #Blogging #Wisdom

111116 There are things you have to hear and things you should not listen to – especially when twittering and blogging. #Twitter #Blogging #Wisdom

There is a new tweet each day. See Twitter and “follow” RolandDuerre!

(Translated by EG)

I took the proverbs from Alle deutsche Sprichwörter.

Bernhard Findeiss
Wednesday October 26th, 2011

(Deutsch) PM-Forum – Ein persönliches Fazit *Update*

Sorry, this entry is only available in German.

Sorry, this entry is only available in German.

Well, today is another one of the grumpy days!

This is today’s AZ. Our huge family reads SZ and AZ. We have a permanent subscription for the SZ, and sometimes read AZ. To be precise: we subscribe whenever I fall for the charming invitations of a female newspaper agent.

Once in several weeks, sometimes more often, sometimes less often, there is a postcard on one of these two newspapers. As a general rule, this postcard is glued to the upper half of page one with three strips.

It is then my work as customer to remove this card, which takes a lot of caution and patience. Sometimes I cannot do it without damaging the paper.

Especially when it is hot in summer, or if the newspaper has been subjected to great pressure, damage will be done – on pages one and two.

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Sorry, this entry is only available in German.