Roland Dürre
Thursday June 14th, 2018


Walk & Think in the springtime sun.
Englischer Garten, Munich, 2018, 11th of Avril

In my conversations with young friends, RPA (Robotic Process Automation) has soften been introduced to me as the new “business hype topic“.

Officially, my first contact with RPA was at the “Symposium Digitale Verwaltung“ – which was organized by ITSMF – on April, 24th, 2018 in Nuremberg.

As you can see from the agenda, the “crème de la crème” of German digitalization was there. And, besides the topics “block-chain” and “artificial intelligence, which are probably unavoidable these days, many presentations were about RPA .

Then I found an article  in the facebook forum  Agile Administration | Exchange and Peer Counselling, which unfortunately is a closed community (due to the high quality of its discussions in this forum) with a comment that contained a note about Johann Herzberg, who is a group leader at the “county-wide IKT strategy” in the Berlin Senate of Interior Affairs.

”… the smart, i.e. automatically and real-time self-controlled, organization of situations and processes. (…) it is imaginable and probably, for reasons of efficiency, even desirable that an application system that is embedded in an AI environment can promote and finalize processes independently in the future. In the smart world, control will no longer happen through written notes but through decisions that will most likely have been reached through algorithms and only corrected by humans where necessary.“

This statement is an excellent description of the current development. Also, it will not only happen in public offices, but also in many areas of the “free economy” where white-collar jobs dominate, for instance everywhere in the financial sector. This future development is also called Robotic Process Automation (RPA). Many protagonist assume that RPA will cost many well-paid jobs. I am not yet quite sure how to judge this development. I will write an IF blog article about it. Various aspects…

Well, the statement is really loaded, isn’t it? Official orders will no longer be written by humans but by machines (robots). I am sure there are quite a few people who will not like the idea. But then, the assumption is that humans are expensive and IT is cheap. And that humans make mistakes and machines do not. There is certainly some truth in this.

As I see it, Herzberg describes the current development quite well. I find the definition of “smart” in the context of organization quite appealing.

However, I have two reservations:

My opinion about the first sentence is that such a system that processes these applications will not need artificial intelligence. In my book, “artificial intelligence” is a “self-learning system”. And a fully automated organization that controls itself in real-time is probably necessary even for “traditional programming” (the implementation of what today is often called algorithms) and will not need artificial intelligence.

About the second sentence: of course, there will still be decisions that come as a written “order”. The data with the results will continue to be saved in digital form. It does not really matter if these (hopefully public) entries in a database will then be embedded in traditional text and perhaps even printed on paper. Because also an “order document” on paper has its inner semantics and therein structured data that symbolize the result of the “order”.

The development Herzberg describes will not only take place in probably all sectors of public administration but also in many (all?) areas of “free economy“.  I am sure this development will be particularly obvious in the white-collar jobs. The financial sector is a good example. Many employees who now earn good money in banks and insurance companies will probably become redundant. It might happen quite soon.

This future development is also called Robotic Process Automation (RPA). Many protagonists assume that RPA will kill well-paid jobs on a huge scale.

Personally, I am not really worried. We had the same situation frequently in the past. In Germany, most of the jobs used to be in agriculture. Today, the number of people working in agriculture is by far the minority. Then we had industries such as the coal and textile industries. They also disappeared, just like the big post-war heroes Grundig, Telefunken and others. Just like the German automobile industry will some day disappear.

But we will certainly come up with new nonsense that absolutely needs to be produced in order to give us something to occupy our time with. And if there really comes a time when we want to restrict ourselves to the necessities – and perhaps that is what we will have to do in order to save the world – then there will be two options. Either we will finally be allowed to work less. Which is what I would like best.

However, I assume that the idea that less is more and growth is nonsense will only dawn on us when it is too late. And then we will have to really work hard in order to survive.

(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Saturday April 28th, 2018

Pollution Through Noise – Growing!

Is there anyone who still believes in growth? Well, I do not. When it comes to noise, for instance, then I feel that growth is just a nuisance.

From a time when I was still driving a car – with my red BMW and my pretty Barbara. Note the miserable Golf next to our car! Bäh!

Let me first tell me what, when I was a child, I remember having been taught from those who educated me.

As I remember it, (nearly) all I ever did when I was a child was wrong if you listen to my parents’ feedback. I was often noisy, even if only as part of a game, but it was not understood as such. It was totally unacceptable if you were loud (and having fun). I was forced to always be considerate. Because you cannot disturb other people, especially not grown-ups. And you also must never be a burden to them. Especially not by displaying childish, i.e. wrong, behaviour. The mantra was always: BEHAVE!

Actually, being too noisy is really a bad thing. At night, it was out of the question. But the same was true for the daytime. Because our neighbours had to work night-shifts regularly. After all, we were living in a suburb mostly inhabited by railway employees. And an exhausted railway employee has to get his sleep in order to be fit for the next night-shift.

I was also supposed to speak upper German – and very distinctly. I always had to look clean and nice, had to wear shoes even when the weather was extremely nice in summer and, of course, my hair was always cut extremely short (after all, dirty children without shoes and with long hair were gypsy children)!

As a German child, I was supposed to always tell the truth and have a straight and upright posture. If I met an adult person, I had to greet them first and then I was only allowed to speak when spoken to. When talking, eye-contact with the person I was talking to was mandatory. Naturally, I also had to behave well in all other areas. Later, I had to wear the Nyltest-shirt and US Blue Jeans were a NOGO!

Since I mostly was not (nor did I want to be) the model child out of the picture book, there was plenty of grumbling and defiance. That did not have nice consequences for me – I often was the evil non-obedient child. I was often at the receiving end of physical violence, confinement to my room, punishment and forced tasks. Not being allowed to go out, just like the abolishment of what was held to be special privileges, such as playing soccer, getting out of the house, listening to he radio,… (we were very late buying a TV set) happened on a daily basis. At the time, my friends were more or less in the same situation. Many of us felt that they were treated very unfairly – so that the trust between us and our parents was always in steep decline. This was often standard procedure in the 1950ies.

It worked – my education. To this day! Even today, my super-ego sometimes causes me to flinch. For example, as soon as I make too much noise or do not behave well, my super-ego will lift its strict index finger and reprimand me!

In retrospective, this also has advantages. For quite some time, my conscience has now been bothering me whenever I sit behind the wheel of a car. I no longer like driving through the land and producing noise. Consequently, I now only use cars in very exceptional cases – as driver or passenger. In my late defiance phase, between 40 and 50, I drove a C1 (motor roller with BMW roof). Both my super-ego and Barbara always scolded me because it was so noisy. Consequently, I sold it. I am still very happy with this decision.

Last Monday, I celebrated the Day of the Beer in the “Forschung”. We talked about the destruction of the world and the glorification of growth. It was typical regulars’ talk, as men will have them when the company is right and one (or more) “Sankt Jacobus” beers have been consumed.

One of my friends in that company told us that, now, he has no noise-free minute left in his garden. Even though his house is certainly situated in one of the upper-class suburbs in the South-East of Munich, the noise never stops, day and night. You constantly hear the noise from the motorway (although the motorway is basically not close), the SUVs drive through the “speed-limit-of-30-km/h“ zones with their fat all-weather tyres, and the motorbikes roar their fuel song. In the sky, planes keep droning and the helicopter makes a lot of noise as it takes its input from the motorway to the Harlaching hospital.

I know what he is talking about. In spring, small special vehicles try to remove the gritting material that was delivered by noisy vehicles in winter. The Diesel trucks of the many parcel services – they all take their own vehicles – are constantly driving through a neighbouring alley in order to deliver the many internet-ordered gadgets with big wrapping as big parcels. Even at night, motor sports lovers celebrate the sound of their many PS bolides with sports exhaust.

Early in the morning, just when the night is preparing to settle down, the street service machines and garbage collectors come. They are replaced by lawn-mowers and construction machines. You always start early if you work on construction sites – and there is always a construction site in the neighbourhood. You get the entire arsenal of noisy machines, from the compressor to the tile saw to the simple hammer. And no matter how small the country residence is, you can never build it without using a crane. In between, you get the noise from the leaf-removal blowers, the active time of which is no longer restricted to autumn.

So basically, I am in the same boat as my friend. I suffer under the noise. I like sleeping with open windows, but that is no longer possible in our house (regardless of the fact that it is “situated rather quietly”). I wake up too often because of some noise or other that disturbs me. In fact, I would probably like to move, but I cannot find an alternative.

A short time ago, I slept with open windows near the Baltic Sea. It was just wonderful. But it was Saturday night. With Sunday night and Monday approaching, the entire noise started again fairly early. And that was it as far as undisturbed peace and quiet at night was concerned.

Mind you, we all could live totally differently. All it takes is a small portion of wanting the right things. It would also be less expensive and healthier. Without cars and all the luxurious waste. But already I hear you lament: “Nobody can live without cars”. Naturally, that is not correct. You live a better life without, but we are just used to it.

Noise gets worse and worse and the lack of consideration increases all the time. We live in Neubiberg in the Kufsteiner Strasse. Until two years ago, a noble old house with an extremely big garden was facing our property. An old couple was living in the house. The nice gentleman cared for his handicapped wife in an adorable way. Then he died and his weak wife was transferred to a nursing home. The beautiful house was soon sold and torn down in no time. In record time, two “villas” were built on the property. Just as you see it quite frequently in the suburbs that surround Munich as a concentration measure.

A few days ago, I returned from shopping with my bike. There was an unusual grumbling. I was surprised and looked for the source. After about fifty metres, I found it. Just behind the fence of one of the two villas, cemented into the earth, there was a device that looked rather futuristic. It made a considerable grumbling noise.

I do not know if the device is for heating or for cooling or for both. Perhaps it is only for saving energy. On our property, I achieve that with no noise through solar electricity and sun-warmed water. The new villa does not have either. To make up for it, it has an outdoor swimming pool – which makes the not too big garden look really negligible. Perhaps the new device is for the swimming pool? What do I know? Well, I cannot really say that I care – after all, I am a Nimby.

Luckily, the noise does not carry as far as our house. We have a fantastic property with a drive of about fifty metres. Thirty metres before our house, I no longer hear anything. I relax. Lucky me. And I feel that this is well. Because, for me, too, the St.-Florian Principle applies:
“Not in my backyard“
The acronym for which is Nimby
🙂 As you can see, the “by“ in Nimby has nothing to do with Bavaria (Bayern).

Later in the afternoon of the “day of the beer”, I rode my bike to a workshop in the East of Munich. My audience lamented about the heat. This is April. And some of them think they will soon have to get air conditioning. Because of the climate catastrophe. This is how they are replacing one evil with another.

The memories of my visits to southern areas give me pause. I always had hotel rooms in the most beautiful places of the world – they were well situated in quiet areas. Only the air conditioning on the right and left, as well as above and below us, was always singing its songs. For me, this is a harmless form of hell. True hell will come one or two generations from now – and it will have been caused by us. The deities GROWTH, AVARICE, EGOTISM and COMFORT will have demanded their victims: gigantic masses of carbon dioxide have been emitted, the oceans have been destroyed, the world is awash with waste, the environment is polluted. With all this, we destroyed our source of life. We followed our Christian call “assume lordship over the earth“ – and now we get the very un-Christian results.

Seen under this light, a little noise is really not worth mentioning. However, my super-ego also tells me not to buy and use products with unnecessary wrappings, i.e. no tins and no drinks in plastic bottles or 2Go cups. Tetra-packs are totally out for my super-ego, just like cosmetics articles (because what is wrong with good old soap?). I am supposed to not eat too much meat and try to produce #nowaste!

Thank you, my dear super-ego. This is how I made friends with you and even became your ally. Mind you, it is all nowhere near as easy as it sounds and as it could be. We can only succeed together.

(Translated by EG)

Klaus Hnilica
Tuesday March 27th, 2018

Saving Money with WHISKY

Carl and Gerlinde (# 58)

No, Carl did not wish to explain yet another time why he and Gerlinde had originally planned going to Tenerife but had then yet again ended up in Lanzarote, from where they had returned home yesterday night!

Gerlinde did not want to say anything on the matter, either: why had Hannelore and Kurt chosen this early Sunday morning during breakfast to invade their privacy, just because Hannelore, again, found it impossible to wait for the fantastic vacation report from Gerlinde? After all, she was eager to convince her Kurt that the Canaries were where they needed to go.

Carl was a little irritated when he asked them if they would like a cup of coffee or if they would prefer the champagne and the salmon appetizers he and Gerlinde had eaten at the “Iberostar Lanzarote Park Hotel“ each morning around this time as their brunch.

Oh – you stayed in the same hotel as last year? Hannelore piped. Gerlinde confirmed it with a tired nod while looking for the champagne glasses, because Carl was actually already on his way to fetch the champagne in the basement. Yes, when Hannelore wanted something he was always eager to please!

Come, Gerlinde, tell us how you liked Lanzarote? What was the weather like? Were the people nice and what about the general atmosphere? We want to know everything in detail, don’t we, Kurt?

Kurt gave a short nod and Gerlinde said: Well – yes – on the whole, it was quite nice!

Well – that does not sound too enthusiastic, does it, grumbled Kurt.

But it was – Carl interrupted while he let the champagne corks pop.

Unfortunately, as soon as the first week was over, I started coming down with this terrible cold. I am still not over it, Gerlinde moaned and, to prove her point, she filled two tissues with what had accumulated in her nose.

And I was cold all the time, Carl grinned while pouring the champagne for everyone.
Are you telling me that it was not as warm and spring-like as you had hoped?, asked Hannelore with her raised champagne glass in her hand.

For the many overweight people, it was certainly warm enough, Carl replied. But for the few normal weight humans, like us, it was not! But now cheers. Here is a toast to you and the fact that we are back home safe.

The constantly blowing cold north wind was really a nuisance this time. Gerlinde moaned with a grand suffering expression that Hannelore obstinately chose to ignore.

Great! – This is why you fly 4,000 kilometres in the direction of Africa, was Kurt’s smug comment. He finished his glass in one go and immediately and provocatively placed it again next to the champagne bottle that still contained a few sips.

There was not a single day when it was possible for her to lie in the sun for more than half an hour, because this stupid wind was always blowing. And she only swam in the pool three times in all these two weeks. Her cold, too, was probably because of this, Gerlinde continued lamenting. After all, now she was in lamenting mode and she noticed how this negative report made Hannelore more and more uncomfortable. But, naturally, she had not been the only one suffering from a cold: even early in the morning when everybody came to eat their breakfast, almost the entire room was filled with coughing and sneezing in all musical pitches when they arrived. And the flight back to Frankfurt, too, had been a single load of running and coughing noses.…

Since Carl, to the pleasure of Hannelore, had refilled the glasses with champagne and was now invitingly lifting his glass, Gerlinde had to interrupt her sneezing report for a short time. This gave Hannelore, after she had swallowed a few hasty sips, the chance to quickly ask the question if they had at least enjoyed nice day trips.

Yes, definitely, said Gerlinde after a long pause during which she, who was still wearing her bathrobe, had been swaying her upper body in both directions and taking small sips from her glass!

Immediately after arrival, they had booked this much-recommended and grandiose trip to the fantastic small fisher island ’La Graziosa’ in the north of Lanzarote for Wednesday: it was only 60€ per person and included lunch, the bus transfer from the hotel, the ride to the romantic harbour of Órzola and from there, with a catamaran, through the so-called Rio to the island of La Graziosa!

Unfortunately, however, it rained on this wonderful Wednesday, which scarcely ever happened, moaned Gerlinde. She asked Carl for a refill and also pointed out that the otherwise normal wind had grown into a veritable storm on this day, which meant that they could not stay on deck and that an extra glass bottom boat had to be commissioned to accommodate all the tourists who wanted to stay dry. After the meal on La Graziosa, they decided against another sightseeing tour of the island in the rain and instead cruised around the island with both ships through this deathly swell – after all, there are 6,000 kilometres of Atlantic Ocean directly behind Graziosa. As a result, she had to throw up all the time and even Carl was only just able to walk upright by the end of the tour.

After this short report, Gerlinde needed another glass of champagne and then sank down on her chair in a state of exhaustion. Carl finally took advantage of this opportunity to say something and added that, after this adventure, each of them had stood under the showers for half an hour in order to get a little warm again. Later, thank God, the unexpected happened – which saved the vacation …

And what unexpected event are you talking about? Hannelore eagerly asked with new hope in her eyes.

Well – I am not sure if I should tell? What do you think Gerlinde?
She did not care, muttered Gerlinde, all she wanted was another glass of champagne.

This is the fourth already, Carl noticed with some worry.

So – what?

Well, I was only mentioning it, he said while refilling the glass.

Incidentally, after the successful trip, their general state had been rather similar to the state Gerlinde was now in, Carl said to Hannelore and Kurt. And without further thought, they had then drunk all the four small bottles of Whisky from the mini-bar in order to sink into their beds with a minimum degree of content.…

However, the rude awakening came on the next morning when they discovered that the price for every one of those minuscule 5cl bottles of Whisky was 9.90€. This means that those four ridiculous bottles of Whisky – none contained more than what you could swallow with four mouthfuls – cost – 39.60 €! Well, this was certainly something you needed to give time to sink in, he moaned.

This is certainly not a bad profit for the hotel, Kurt – suddenly wide awake – commented!
And Gerlinde also moaned in her chair. However, her renewed call for champagne was no longer satisfied.

Instead, Carl told Hannelore that, naturally, nobody was going to treat him to such fraudulent rip-off. A short visit to the supermarket clarified the Whisky situation: the 75cl bottle of exactly the same brand was 15.85 €.

Even Kurt knew immediately what needed to be done. Consequently, he nodded when Carl, not without a certain degree of pathos, declared that he and Gerlinde spent the remaining 10 days of their vacation consuming 10 bottles of Whisky. Which meant that, after deduction of the acquisition costs, they had actually generated a plus of no less than 1,325.- € – as you could easily calculate yourself!

Ahhhh – Hannelore suddenly giggled, now it dawned on her: so that is what Gerlinde meant when she said that, all in all, you had been quite satisfied with your vacation!
Yes, that was probably what she meant, Carl confirmed since Gerlinde by then had gone to sleep in her chair. Apparently, the champagne had done its job!

And maybe the champagne had also helped Kurt who, without sounding any louder at all and with an air of self-evidence, suddenly said that, if such a potential for economizing was apparent, he could easily imagine spending a vacation on the Canary Islands.…

(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Saturday December 30th, 2017


Munich, December, 30th, 2018, 12:00 – Source: IF Blog


Unofficial terror warning, level 4, for all the citizens of the FRG, especially in big cities. 

A billion dollar deal!

Tomorrow, a huge collective mass, not necessarily defined by religion, but certainly fanatic humans, will become victims of consumer terror. In almost exactly 36 hours, there will be a category 1 fine-dust attack on the environment (not only) in Germany.

The target of this collective terror will be the air we breathe, especially in big cities. Among these small terrorists, you will – not totally to my surprise – find many car drivers who add to the misery they spread all the year round by a big bang. They will shoot rackets into the night until the last one is spent.

This environmental catastrophe will continue until the early morning of January, 1st. It is triggered by masses of firecrackers. The alarm can only be turned off in the morning of January, 1st. The main attack against our health will last for about one hour. More sporadic explosions and emissions are still possible during the subsequent hours and days.

Especially elderly, handicapped and sick persons, along with children, are strongly advised to remain in their flats and keep the windows closed during the night between December, 31st, 2017 and January, 1st, 2018. All exercise in fresh air, such as hiking or riding a bike, are strictly forbidden.

Due to collateral events accompanying this eruption, the advice is also directed to all females (see additional sexism warning below).

The considerable noise is a collateral damage related to the terrorist attack but can be ignored. To be sure, if you listen, you might be reminded of war and bombs and thus suffer traumata. But basically, the only living creatures that really suffer are animals.

Since the rockets do not contain military pay-load and the explosive charges – let us hope all of them – have to be empty (experts call them castrated explosive charges), the physical and emotional damage, as well as the material destruction of objects and houses, will, luckily, be minimal.

But we have to give a massive warning because of the increased alcohol consumption of all the prosperity terrorists involved. Consequently, there is quite a chance that “anonymous situations” will be used for sexual assaults (from turning you on verbally over physical closeness to rape).

Women, therefore, should avoid locations where masses of people converge. This is especially true for railway stations and plazas near other traffic junctions.

If a woman really needs to leave her home around the critical time, then she should only do so wearing total body mummery and she should be accompanied by several strong men.

If you ignore this unofficial warning, you must take responsibility for possible consequences and cannot claim that “you did not know”!

(Translated by EG)

This article is only partially meant as a joke. Because fine dust at Sylvester (Feinstaub an Silvester) is not at all something I find funny. It is also interesting that the Bayerische Staatsministerium für Umwelt und Verbraucherschutz gives an “official” warning that exploding firecrackers can cause injuries.
However, this official source does not mention at all how essentially and massively the maniac fireworks create fine dust. But at least the Federal Ministry gives a statement. The church used to have a motto: “food instead of fireworks”.
But that, too, seems no longer en vogue?

Realized as “sex app” on blockchain basis. Great Features!

Terrible age: in the middle of puberty and still without sex contract.

Trendsetter USA.

We have “God’s own country“. The government of which still considers itself the world police – regardless of the fact that they have not been number 1 in the world for a long time. They lost the right to “moral leadership” (if there can even be such a thing) a long time ago.

In that country, it happens almost every week that an amok shooter (mostly male) kills a dozen people. Just like that. Regardless of the fact that (or perhaps more: because) this country always has had a high affinity to punishment and revenge. That is also why their prisons are as full as nowhere else in the world. Filled to the brim, especially with coloured men.

Now, the very same country announced that it will fight sexism with all its might. And consequently, they now, for instance, cut out actors from film scenes. The sexism wave rolls through the world, many men are massively accused of having behaved sexist or of still behaving sexist.

Sexual violence in power-based systems.

In the European Parliament, too, women now hold up the “#MeToo“ posters for the men (who actually do not even attend such parliamentary sessions) to see. Because in the Parliament, too, just like in Hollywood, women (mostly, but sometimes also men) have been or are sexually molested or pressure is put on them or they are cheated and thus made to act sexually and even abused and raped.

Sexual violence in the public domain.

At the same time, I hear that sexual violence cannot only be found on streets and plazas (especially in front of railway stations), as well as around religious and other institutions of this world, but particularly often in the home environment and inside marriages.

Sexual violence at home.

It is said that husbands often demand what is allegedly their right by using force. If that is so, then something should probably be done by the executive. Why not regulate the marital sex with a separate contract, like a “Nuptial Contract II”? Just like the “Nuptial Contract I” regulates everything about the property and the additions to same during the marriage.

You can regulate the sexual side in a separate marriage contract (as they already do it in the sadist-masochist environment).

A report in the “Zeit“ confirms that my idea is a good one. You can read that sadist-masochist practices are reported on TV (which means this makes them socially acceptable). You can also read that, before they interact in sadist-masochist sexual ways, these couples or groups sign a written “letter of intent” where they agree which practices are desired, which are borderline and from where the red line that must not be crossed is reached.

An old joke for problem solution.

These protocols remind me of a joke we boys told each other when we were 14. Let me call it “sewing machine”. It is about an elderly couple who have agreed upon the following:

A married couple designed a protocol that had proved reliable through their entire marriage. They had defined the term “sewing machine” as a code word for “sexual desire”. In those days (just like today), nobody would have dared to say these things out loud.

This is how it was done: If one of the partners desired sex, they were allowed to say “sewing machine”. The partner could either comply or refuse. And the other party had to accept the refuse without frustration or accusations. This was the mutual agreement.

The couple lived happily for many decades and their relationship was characterized by mutual respect. However, “sewing machine” came less and less often as the years went by.

One evening, the already elderly husband took heart and said the magic word “sewing machine” to his beloved wife. His no longer very young spouse was tired and refused. After some time, however, she made up her mind and said “sewing machine” to her husband. He replied sadly: “What a pity, now I sewed the few stitches I needed by hand”.

Well, the simple protocol as related in this joke (application – acceptance or refusal) is, of course, too simple for modern standards. After all, we live in times of total regulation and want precise rules.

Nuptial Contract II for Marriages.

A good Nuptial Contract II for regulating the sexual transactions in a marriage that meets modern expectations will certainly be a little more complex than the aforementioned agreement. It would be a little like the modern patient’s provision. You have to imagine quite a few potential future scenarios and clearly say what you want to happen in all cases. I certainly would not wish to list in detail all the many things that need to be considered. You would also have to state how violations by a partner are to be punished in order to document the offenses in a legally accepted way. But I am sure that the ingenious and sexually experienced solicitors will gladly provide you with wonderful and lengthy model contracts.

In modern times, sex does not only happen between married couples, but more and more also in free life. But this, too, needs to be regulated. You cannot just go ahead and have sex without before having agreed upon the following questions: What is desired and what is not desired? What is permitted and what is not permitted? How do you signal opposition? Whose fault is it if suddenly matters get out of control? …

No responsible legislation can just look the other way and leave such a strong legal uncertainty. After all, you have to protect the people from their own activities. Just imagine how many people could be falsely accused and the accused persons have no way of proving the lies? But those lies can destroy entire lives.

An app for free extra-marital intercourse.

In this case, I would offer an app. After all, the sexual partners wish to remain anonymous and it is a “peer2peer“ agreement (I am sure a man-in-the-middle would not be welcome in this context). The IT based solution would have to be based on block chain technology.

This kind of app has many advantages. Since it is in possession of the sex profiles of both partners, it can quite easily and quickly draw up a clear contract: with a single click, the partners can set the average of sexual variants for bot (or, if so desired, even more) partners.

Great Features!

Additionally, this app might provide considerable added value. Besides giving contractual certainty in an uncertain sexual world, it could also extend the libretto (like a cooking recipe) for the planned sexual interaction by recommendations that, for instance, are preferred by other sexual partners who have similar profiles. Or it might also include suggestions from the Kamasutra – quasi as suggestions for improvement and then initiate a contentment feedback for both partners. And then the contract could be extended based on said feedback.

You must not forget the contract termination!

Of course, a very important part of the app is that the sex contract is properly terminated or its end mutually agreed upon after the relationship is finished. It would probably be most user-friendly if such contracts are always limited in time (between one and a maximum of five years). If necessary, they might include an optional extension. Before the regular contract time is up, such a contract would have an integrated retrospective and offer support for contract modification to the partners in case of extension (change management).

Integration of the functionality into a speed dating mechanism.

The functionality could also be integrated into the software for speed dating portals or apps (for instance Münchner-Single or Tinder), which means the entire process (life cycle management) from the first meeting to the separation could be offered from one service. An automatic switch to Njuptial Contract II would have to be included.

Legal security by means of precise documentation.

What a wonderful new sexual world such a technological progress would bring! And what makes it even better: if you document the actual behaviour during the sexual interaction at all times by recording videos with your smart phone, you could guarantee even more legal security. The video tape could be used as a neutral proof if, for instance, one of the partners has violated a prior agreement. Naturally, this means of proof, just like the entire app, would be strictly data protected and it would have to be deleted after both partners have agreed to destroy it.

At Google they already have all of this for normal life.

For all those who refuse to take what I wrote seriously, I want to remind you that this is how, in many dimensions, the network already works. For those who take me seriously, I have a word of comfort. This article is meant to be more cynical than anything else. And if there is ever such an app, then you can try it. But that does not mean you have to try it.

However, I am quite serious about one thing: there is no solution to the sexism problem. The only thing that helps is a violence free communication at eye-level between humans in general and, of course, also between men and women. And a fair and considerate treatment of each other based on mutual respect and appreciation.

Nor do I wish to make a secret of the fact that this current wave of collective hypocrisy on sexism is something I find extremely repelling. Unfortunately, you have to take it seriously – some of it reminds me very much of the witch hunt we had in earlier epochs. When all is said and done, it is always about using power in order to satisfy your own greed, be it sexual greed, material greed or other greed.

In the man-woman-sex model, we are talking both directions:
Man uses power in order to get sex. Woman uses sex in order to get power.

It will probably not be possible to solve the problem that those who have power will always want more power by installing new laws or new punishment. After all, the powerful assume that he can bend the law to his own will. I find it rather sad that, regardless of all the sexual enlightenment, even today there is probably no other area where there is so much hypocrisy as when people talk sex.

My next articles about “SEX“
will be less cynical than this one. They will also be more serious. There are enough topics I would like to write about. Here is a small outlook:

  • What made it possible that it was the women who were given all the social responsibility for contraception? It makes infertility quasi a social obligation! And to top it all, society celebrates the process as the “liberation of women”! Is that not also some kind of rape? And what consequences does it have?
  • Motivated by the current sexism wave, I started thinking about if and when I experienced the use of sexism and power at InterFace Connection GmbH / InterFace AG, which is the enterprise I founded a long time ago. And how did I myself treat such symptoms? I will relate the result of my thinking process as part of my entrepreneurial diary in this blog.
  • It also strikes me that there are interesting parallels between sexism and corruption. The sexual enrichment of your life by using power does not really differ too much from the material enrichment by using power. There are numerous temptations. You can give in to them – but you do not have to. I will write about this in one of my next articles.

(Translated by EG)

Hans Bonfigt
Monday September 11th, 2017

Autobahn 2.0: Der neugrüne Rassismus – Hully Gully

Sorry, this entry is only available in German.

Roland Dürre
Sunday September 10th, 2017

Another “Coming Out“ – #BTW2017

A cynical party-parody. Unfortunately, I mean it seriously, which makes it a sad thing.

In two weeks, I will again have to vote.

Perhaps 50 years ago.

My civil “super-ego” forces me to go to the elections. After all, I do believe that democracy is doubtless one of the better political systems, even if ours has been seriously perverted and consequently suffered huge damage due to “election marketing”, the dominance of lobbyism when it comes to legislation and government and a party oligarchy.

Besides, the party I vote for will not only get my vote but also one Euro from the state (if certain requirements are met ).

Consequently, I have spent quite some time already in preparation for the next election Sunday. Here is the current state of my personal evaluation. I chose the exclusion principle:

For historical reasons, I cannot vote for the big “people’s parties“ CDU and CSU. They both are responsible for the German re-armament against the expressed wish of the German people. In quite a goal-oriented way, it was prepared by the protagonist Adenauer immediately after WW-II and then realized as soon as possible in a fashion that I would call “criminal”. 
In doing so, they failed to take advantage of a unique historical chance. A chance that perhaps no other country except Germany ever had – which was due to its miserable history in the 20th century. As a consequence of the establishment of the “Bundeswehr”, the GDR followed suit three years later with the creation of the “Volksarmee” – and that was the moment up from which two German states, both heavily armed, confronted each other on either side of a brutal border. 
Without re-armament, the revival of the German weapons industry would not have been possible, either. Another result was forced labour that they called “compulsory military service”. It cost me 18 months of my life. 
Moreover, both “C-parties” have – to this day – seen to it that the political and social characteristics of the FRG are such that it became an opportunistic and egoistic welfare system. Protection of your property has become the highest social value. Even the “C” in the name cannot camouflage that fact. 
Under CDU dominated governments, the state became a marionette of the industry, the destruction of the environment (air, water, soil, nature) was accepted and even promoted (!), as for instance can be seen in the war on the streets. It became the ruling task of the educational system that young people should be turned into consumers and trained to be the labouring masses for the industry. Social solidarity was misinterpreted and freedom was sacrificed. . 
Parties that, to this day, believe that all these measures were good will not get my vote.

Neither can I, these days, vote for the SPD and Green Party, because they not only supported all these things, but also must be made responsible for making foreign German Armed Forces activities possible. At the time, the red-green coalition broke a taboo:
The German Armed Forces were no longer exclusively for defence, but “in order to take world-wide responsibility”. Consequently, that was the time when the FRG started to not only export weapons but also war. 
Unfortunately, if you take a close look at history, the polemic rhyme: “Who was the traitor, social democrats?” is only too true for the SPD. Even my agreeing with the ideal of social democracy cannot make up for this. 
As I see it, the Green Party developed from an idealistic-moralistic party to become an indoctrinated event – besides, I observe that the change from being an opposition to becoming a reigning party took place in an exceptionally foul way: ideals were sacrificed for positions and power.

I do not want to give my vote to the FDP. I am not really familiar with their negative historic achievements because I never took great notice of the party. However, in my perception, the FDP is and always was a party that – with the exception of a few protagonists – always acted rather opportunistic. It also basically always functioned as a party of patronage. And they received even more huge donations from industry than the other aforementioned parties. Besides: if someone demands and propagates FREEDOM yet does not know the meaning of the word, then I do not want to support them.

So what other parties do we have?

Currently, the AfD is rather successful. Well, I need not give reasons in this article why I cannot and will note vote for them. Just like the NPD is out of the question for me. Luckily, it seems like the NPD is no longer relevant. Regardless of the fact that, for reasons I cannot follow, the aforementioned parties constantly seem to try and forbid the NPD, rather than the AfD.

Next, let us take a look at the “Freien Wähler“ and the Freie Bürger Union (FBU). In Wikipedia, several groups of voters  and one small party call themselves “Freie Bürger Union“. They are present in various German cities and constituencies. Bavaria is a regional centre of these groups. And: they consist of bourgeois conservative or rightist-liberally  oriented regional communal politicians, activists and sometimes former representatives of the CDU/CSU who are no longer party members. I cannot give them my vote. 
Among other things, the Freien Wähler want to strengthen municipal self-administration. Their given reason for becoming candidates both on county and state level is that the politics of county and state undermine the independence of the municipalities The party is in favour of separate financial responsibility for the municipalities. On the European level, the party demands that excluding a region must become a set rule in parliament. I cannot vote for them.

So now I need to discuss the “Piraten”. According to Wikipedia, this party considers itself the party of the Information Society and thus as part of the international movement for participation when it comes to the change, they give high priority to “digital revolution” and consequently the information society. I rather like that. In fact, I already voted for the Pirates once in the past. To me, they seemed like a party full of values that, luckily, did not have a programmatic approach. Instead, they basically want to provide their know-how on digitalization, which is a focal point of their agenda. I also knew some members of the Pirate party. They were small entrepreneurs or else freelancers. Some of them were quite nice. 
Then, however, the Pirates thought they had to write a program and thus give up the principle of free actions following the best possible knowledge. In my eyes, this was how they exchanged their agile souls for the hope of success. Ever since then (as a matter of course), their development was in one direction only: down. For me, they were no longer a party I could vote for. What a pity.

Now I already analysed 10 (in words: ten) parties and none of them can get my vote! Am I heading towards abstaining? Will I let my election-Euro go unused? Well, not all is lost, because there are a few parties left.

I find Die Linke in Wikipedia. It says that Die Linke (aka  Linkspartei )  was created through the merging of the SPD splitter WASG and the Linkspartei.PDS. The latter is a result of a re-naming of the SED successor PDS in 2005. This is how Die Linke suffers from a stigma that, to this day, has prevented it from becoming acceptable in society. Allegedly, there are still numerous SED and Stasi people on board, although this seems unlikely to me, if only for demographic reasons. If I were the Wahlomat kind of person, I would probably vote for “Die Linke”, because in their program, I find quite a few things that I absolutely agree with. 
On the other hand, I own a small but industriously earned amount of money – and there is a historic fear in me that the communists might wish to take my millions away from me. As they say: “Only the most stupid calves will vote for their own butchers.“
Apropos calves: there is a Song, but it is directed against the AfD – rather than against Die Linke. However, I do not wish to be a stupid calf.
On the other hand, perhaps I should vote for Die Linke, after all? With modern “democratic honesty”, you should probably vote for the party that you like best. Consequently, I cannot discount the possibility of giving them my vote. Albeit without enthusiasm. But then, enthusiasm left me a long time ago.

But I have not yet reached that stage. I keep looking. Riding my bike to Unterhaching, I see a poster advertising “Die Grauen”. I am thinking of my sparse pension. If I had nothing on top of it, I would be really poorly off. Regardless of the fact that I paid the highest possible pension insurance for decades.
However: Die Grauen have the slogan “For all Generations”. What a disappointment. They are not in favour of us retired people, after all.
However, I find it nice, because I have children and grandchildren. And I want them, too, to be well off. 
According to Wikipedia, “Die Grauen” see themselves in the tradition of the movement Graue Panther that was founded in the 1970ies by Trude Unruh. As opposed to this movement, the party does not see itself as a party for the elderly, but instead has an all-encompassing political approach that they also want to see reflected in the name tag amendment. They formulate their philosophy in the foreword of the party program: “In a global world that moves faster and faster, Die Grauen want to combine the energy of youth with the experience of the elderly and form a society worth living in”. Well, this seems to sound nice. For me, however, it contains too many buzzwords. So I will gladly forget Die Grauen.

I start getting desperate. I found a dozen parties – and only one of them is even remotely an option. But – as they say: never give up. If you fall down, you have to get up again. Clean your mouth and continue.

So I continue. And lo and behold, I see a poster with a very special message:
Don’t be a Horst!

That is something I understand immediately. I definitely would not wish to be one. When he was Minister of Health in Berlin, he committed enough crimes. And now he is king of Bavaria. 
Except: the poster advertises “Die Partei”. According to Wikipedia, DIE PARTEI  is a party for work, for a constitutional state, for animal protection, for elite promotion and for basis-democratic initiatives (Apronym: Die PARTEI). It is a German small party that was founded in 2004 by a few editors of the satire magazine Titanic and distinctly has parody character.“ 
We also read: Die PARTEI meets the legal requirements formulated in the Parteiengesetz. However, some doubt that their program is actually meant seriously. Among other things, they imitate characteristics and electoral campaign methods used by other parties and occasionally some of the members are seen on other party’s events.

Well, basically I am the type of reader who reads POSTILLON, but you must never be too one-sided. “Die Partei“ is also called the satire party. When I hear satire, I think cabaret. And immediately, I think of people like Bruno Jonas, Claus Wagner, Dieter Hildebrandt, Gerhard Polt, Jörg Hube, Josef Hader, Georg Schramm, Maximilian „Max“ Uthoff, Sigi Zimmerschied, Urban Priol (Pelzig) and Werner Schneyder. Not to forget the much-loved Hanns Dieter Hüsch. These are all people I saw many times and some of them I was personally acquainted with. They all absolutely impressed me with their sensitivity, their sharp intellect and their precise logics. I admire how they were able to retain their sense of humour in the face of everything. These are people I managed to have honest discussions with quite quickly.

Most of the cabaret people I saw on TV or when I went to their shows made a huge impression on me. Maybe it makes sense, after all, to actually vote for a “satire party”. Especially if such a party offers itself to frustrated non-voters who need to be persuaded to vote at all? 
Unfortunately, this party, too, has a shadow looming over it. A short time ago, I followed a constructive facebook discussion about whether or not anybody can call himself responsible if he votes for a satire party in times like ours, where the social spiral rapidly points downwards and huge problems loom over the horizon. Because times are basically the exact opposite of hilarious. 
As I see it, this is a serious argument. But then, maybe we should solve the problems with serious humour? So now I found another party besides Die Linke that might qualify as a recipient of my cross and one Euro.

However, I want more. This is not the way to get on. So now I use another concept of thought and ask myself what was the last relevant social change in Bavaria I considered progress and which party initiated it.

The answer is easy – it was Non-Smokers’ Protection. In Bavaria, it has now even been enforced on the Octoberfest, which is something that seemed to be unthinkable for a long time. Consequently, this year, I can really look forward to the Octoberfest that takes place at the same time as the elections. I will spend the evening of election day with friends drinking in a smoke-free environment. In Bavaria, the protection of non-smokers was initiated after a plebiscite “Non-Smokers’s Protection” on July, 4th,2010 after a successful  petition for a referendum  “For true non-smokers’ protection!“. The petition had aimed at changing the Bavarian Health Protection Law (Gesundheitsschutzgesetz, GSG). As a consequence, they eventually installed a ban on smoking  in all pubs without exception. The C party had been against it on the grounds that, allegedly, the entire Bavarian restaurant sector would be ruined. The initiative had come from Sebastian Frankenberger and the ÖDP.
Well, my discussion of parties had actually not yet mentioned the ÖDP. Incidentally, their program is a fairly good match to my ideas. However, I sometimes fear that there might be a lot of protestant frugality and catholic saintliness in this party. However, as long as the goals are the right ones and I am not forced to become a catholic…

So now I found three parties that might actually be worthy of my vote: Die Linke, the Partei and the ÖDP. During the next few weeks, I will gather some more information and think about it – and then I will decide. After all, I know full well that decisions are always made under uncertainty.

And now, for the time being, there is an end to me “outings”.

(Translated by EG)

Today, when I rode my bike home, I saw a DKP poster at the Ottobrunn S-Bahn station. It said: “More Income, Less Armament”. Well, that sounds reasonable and rational. But can anybody vote for DKP? Somehow or other, that would be strange.

Roland Dürre
Wednesday July 5th, 2017

About Weapons and Cars

On July, 13th, we will again meet for an “AktMobCmp“ and dream of peaceful and active mobility. I take that as a motivation to write a polemic article against cars and weapons. On the other hand, it is not at all polemic. If it were not so sad, it would actually be hilarious.

CAREFUL – I know about cars! “My Porsche (from Distler) and I!“

Each year, millions of new cars are distributed around the planet. Most of them arrive at the customer, but more and more just sit there waiting. Sometimes many thousands of them in the desert (see CAREFUL – I also know about weapons – pistols, guns, machine-guns and bazookas.). Sometimes hundreds of them in our small world, at the small and medium-sized “second-hand car salespersons” that you find by the dozens along all the bigger and smaller streets that lead to and from our smaller and bigger cities.

But also the “registered” cars are only used sporadically, Mostly they sit around, often looking very stupid and blocking ways. They use up immense space plastered with concrete and steal the people their living areas. I do not find that nice. Except if all those cars were driving around all the time, that would be an unimaginable catastrophe. So it is probably better that they are sitting around.

Because it just does not make sense that the world is being packed with and overridden by more than one billion “motorized vehicles” and that there are probably already more car seats than humans.

Something must change – because this planet cannot survive it. But money reigns over the world – and cars are an excellent way to make money. After all, cars are perfect for the ego of the consumer-oriented person you find in our “modern and developed society”.

CAREFUL – I also know about weapons – pistols, guns, machine-guns and bazookas.

It is similar with weapons. Here, too, an unbelievable amount is produced each year. I truly do not know if the world spends more money on cars or on weapons. Both sums are probably unimaginable.

Weapons, too, are first and foremost status symbols. Perhaps even more so than cars. What the pistol or the gun is for Jim and John, the intercontinental ballistic rocket is for the powerful. And they all upgrade all the time. Even in Bavaria, because the state is becoming unsafe. The police because your Jim and John becomes more and more violent. And the NATO and its enemies because the general state of the world becomes more and more dangerous.

Both weapons and cars, however, are not only good for your ego. With weapons, too, you can really make a profit. Luckily, weapons – as opposed to cars or just like cars (?) – are mostly produced in reserve. From the business perspective, that makes no sense in the long run, because you must actually use them. So you will need wars. And whenever, through a huge effort, you actually get peace somewhere, you will want to create war somewhere else. It does not really take a huge effort. And if you want to remain in business, you will never want wars to end!

Luckily (for us) wars generally take place in a part of the world that is quite far away from us. Because we find war is a bad thing. Here in Europe, they declared war taboo. To be sure, we earn good money with wars, but we do not want to see the results.

Even if there is a little bit of terror, we overreact. Well, this is an absolute no-go. After all, we already have enough victims of our wars on the motorways and streets of our republic. That is enough. So we wage wars as far away from our borders as possible. And we are especially keen on fighting terror.

But woe if the weapons are used everywhere. That would be called world-war. That would mean an end to comfort and “over-and-out”. For all of us.

The cars already play at “world-war”. World-wide, they murder considerably more than a million persons each year (they say the number is 1.25 million, with many times ten-fold as many seriously wounded).

That is probably more than, so far, all weapons together manage to kill every year – even if we count and sum up with normal weapons victims (like in the USA), with those caused by terror attacks and those of all the “just wars” for or against some brain-damaged concepts.

There are absurdities both with weapons and cars! And if it were not so sad, one would have to find it hilarious.

For instance, there is a very modern cannon sitting on a very modern ship. Let us guess which “non-evil country” owns them. However, you are not allowed to use the cannon, because every shot costs 800,000 US-Dollars. It is particularly embarrassing if the ship we mentioned gets stuck in the Panama Channel. That was the Zumwalt (2016).

But there must be a time when the cannon of the Zumwalt has to be used. I am not all that familiar with it (after all, I served with the air force), but perhaps such an expensive shot will be worth it when, later on, a Chinese aircraft carrier is shot down. Allegedly, they are building quite a few of them now. Well, one would assume that the first shot has to be on target.

The MOAB, which, incidentally, was originally not called the mother of all bombs – the Pentagon would never come up with such a cynical name – too, had to be tried out at some time. And since they knew no better, they chose Pakistan. Because such a poor country cannot really fight back, and besides, it has to be liberated from the Taliban.

So they allegedly destroyed a huge subterranean Taliban complex. And because they had protected the civilians optimally before they threw the bomb, they knew the exact numbers of killed Taliban shortly after the bomb had been delivered. How wonderfully absurd.
As far as cars are concerned, I see the absurdities on a daily basis in the streets of Munich. Some of them are called SUVs and sometimes they have more horsepower than a truck or bus. And their emissions land right in my face and in my lungs, just like the smoke used to when someone sat opposite me eating their Pizza in the restaurant and smoking a cigarette.

A friend of mine suggested that they should first transfer the emissions of cars into the inside of the cars, before releasing them into the atmosphere. Riding my bike along the Rosenheimer Strasse, I am quite inclined to vote in favour of that idea.

With cars, we have a new development. Because even the terrorists, who are not very well-educated, have now found out what a good tool cars are when it comes to doing their job: the car as the best of all bombs. They use it more and more often. The cities and towns already start protecting their squares and pedestrians’ zones with bollards. Maybe we should invest in enterprises that make bollards?

I close my article with numbers from the German Federal Statistical Office about the war on our streets .

WIESBADEN – 239 persons died in traffic accidents in April 2017. According to the Federal Statistics Office (Destatis), this was eight fatalities or 3.2 % fewer than in April 2016. The number of injured persons decreased by 12.0 % to circa 28.300 compared the same month last year.
The number of persons killed between January and April 2017 was 867, which is more or less the same as in the same time period 2016 (865). Roughly 105,600 persons were injured during the first four months of 2017 on German streets, which is a decline of 2.9 % compared to the same interval in 2016. The number of accidents also declined. In the first four months of 2017, the police counted 790,400 traffic accidents, which is 1.4% less than last year. In 81,300 of these accidents, humans were injured (– 2.7 %) and in 709,000 accidents, there was only material damage (– 1.2 %).

Well, at least they say the number decreased. Regardless of the number of persons killed going up. But then, why bother with two more fatalities?

(Translated by EG)

Klaus Hnilica
Thursday June 1st, 2017

An Outrageous Summing-Up!

He had promised himself that this was going to happen: when he, ’Colonel ’ Vatter – two “t-s”, please – would turn seventy, and if by then he would still be clear-headed, – then he would write a summing-up of his life in front of the entire family clan Vatter, especially in front of his wife Cornelia, his daughter Conny and his son Corni! And since, even in early childhood, he had been given the nickname ’Colonel’, the ’ruthless summing-up of his life’ was a foregone conclusion.

Or rather, it was ’some kind of summing-up’! Just like you also have double accounting!

Basically, it was a dry listing of ’positive’ and ’negative’ assets, including a subsequent ’balancing’, just like on a scale, that was now determined!

Without qualms and totally self-critical, he was going to list under ’positive assets’ everything that he had managed to accomplish in his life and how he had left all losers behind. And, naturally, under ’negative assets’, he was going to list everything that others had failed to accomplish! He was going to list their failures in the most precise and unbiased way, just like all diligent book-keepers traditionally knew that was their duty!

Basically, in his opinion, every upright man should make such a list when he nears the end of his life in a neutral and humble way! A balance sheet of life where you focus as clear as glass and judge your success and other people’s failures.

Even your own family could not be left out of such a balance sheet, provided you wanted to include them.

But then, everything had to be dug up and put on the table. Even if you only had the dining room table – because no other table was big enough. Naturally, this was a nightmare for his much-loved Cornelia: because said dining table was overflowing with stone-hard breakfast eggs, tough steaks, burnt schnitzels, half-cooked chicken legs, mushy beans, hard milk-rice and many, many more ’delicacies’ from her kitchen!

But then, after a short hysterical spell of screaming, she would certainly have calmed down and understood that such a balancing only made sense if it was carried out with the highest possible degree of honesty.

And if on this ’dinner table of life achievements’ space would have become really scarce – since perhaps Conny and Corni, too, would have bashfully added their ’failure packets’ – then he, the ’Colonel’ would certainly have been quite willing to place his ’palette of successes’ underneath the table. After all, there was plenty of space and Conny and Corni would have had an ideal opportunity to learn in a very pedagogic way how the German proverb ’modesty is a virtue’ can be both strikingly demonstrated and lived in practice! And they would have experienced themselves what our Federal Chancellor had recently said when she had talked about ’our values giving us a sense of feeling at home’…

Initially, he had actually believed that this kind of ’life balance sheet’ might well also have been written as an ’interim balance’ focussing on special phases in life. For instance, even as early as on his fiftieth birthday, such a balance could have been written – especially if you looked at his unparalleled career!

But unfortunately, at the time, his well-loved Cornelia had run amok and had, out of the blue, demanded a divorce. Just because, again, she had made an elephant out of a mosquito, this time named Marianne! Mind you, it had been Cornelia herself who had introduced this Marianne to the family. Against the wishes of the ’Colonel ’!

My God, how she had idolized the much younger Marianne! The two were inseparable! And every shopping tour with her had been celebrated like a glimpse of paradise. Cornelia could and would simply not see that the golden Marianne was bringing nothing but discord into the harmonious Vatter family.

Actually, at the time, he, the ’Colonel ’ himself, had to get active and show her once and for all where the limits were that she could not trespass. However, she needed to be shown those limits all the time. It had been really bad – there were days when – hard to believe though it might be – she needed three limits in a row!

Eventually, the ’Colonel ’ had been more than happy when Cornelia finally saw that this Marianne person had to leave. And instantly! However, the idea Cornelia – in some sort of somnambulant shock – had come up with that they needed a divorce, was quite over the top and called for medical treatment. Of course, the ’Colonel’ was more than considerate and thus, to make matters bearable for her, refrained from the aforementioned first ’interim life balance report’ when he turned fifty: After all, among the ’negative assets’, one would have had to write Cornelia’s less than beautiful desire to get a divorce, while, at the time, he would have had to write his advance into the concern management among the ’positive assets’. That would have been the only way for such a documentation to make sense, rather than just becoming a stale re-interpretation of the truth.

But, naturally, he did not want to thus punish Cornelia! She was desperate enough as it was!

The children, too, had been against the idea. Well, they hardly had anything noteworthy to report under ’positive assets’, which would have meant he alone would have appeared there …

No – it had really been quite a good idea at the time from which all parties concerned benefited to refrain from this first ’partial life balancing’. After all, for him, a ’Colonel’ such an omission was definitely bearable!

Following the logic at the time, another chance for an ’interim balancing’ would have been when he had turned sixty! In fact, he had been quite prepared to do so and had already collected and listed loads of material. But then this excruciating data theft became fashionable, where illegally gained information about diverse Swiss accounts had been offered to the German finance system. Since ancient times, the entire world had parked their dirty money on these accounts. And suddenly, everybody who owned perhaps a million or two more was called a tax fraud – and worse!

Naturally, the ’Colonel ’ had to be the shining model for his children Conny and Corni and, by being one of the first who reported himself to the authorities, demonstrate to them that tax fraud was just something you did not do! And that, if your slate was clean, you never had to be afraid that the legal authorities who suddenly started to move all over the place might come after you.

However, when suddenly, one week before his birthday, the finance authority officers had invited themselves for a kind of ’pre-birthday-party’, his much-loved Cornelia opined that, this one time, it was probably a good idea to limit the celebration to the immediate family. Since her nerves were already very tightly strung, the ’Colonel’, naturally, agreed without hesitation. When expressing his gratitude in a few words, he refrained from even the slightest hint at a ’life balancing’. With his tendency towards honesty and unadorned truth, such behaviour would only have stirred up unwelcome dust from his environment. Not to mention the immense problems that the very fragile health of his extremely old mother and his even older father would have caused. Neither of them had long survived the subsequent debacle of the European Financial World – they had each lost too much money …

But now, on his seventieth birthday – the ’life balancing’ was finally going to happen!

At least a short version thereof!

All that would have been inconvenient had now more or less been omitted or made itself obsolete: for instance Cornelia, who, five years ago, had separated from her ’Colonel’ and was now living in Belgium with a musician. Allegedly, Conny was doing well with her family in the USA and Corni was in an important bank director in England.

Well, the problem was actually that now, although nobody was in his way, there was also nobody he could have told about his grandiose successes. Except the two drunken nephews and the cross-eyed cousin he had not talked to in thirty years! And, of course, Marianne, with whom he had now lived for six years, because she had never given up her habit of breaking down all obstacles that blocked her path!

Marianne, however, although she was a wonderfully attractive lady, had not the slightest bit of understanding for his, as she called it, almost ’sickly chronic self-indulgence’: on the contrary, she herself wanted to be admired! And all those silly memories from the past were things she certainly could not have cared less about!
But if he, the ’Colonel’ felt that he needed to give a life balancing, then why did he not himself write down his great life achievement. Quasi as a last will for the entire Vatter family. And now he also had time, didn’t he?

With these words, she pressed a brand-new, lockable, leather-bound note book into the hands of her ’Colonel ’ – hands that were overflowing with age spots. She added a quick kiss on the dried-up wrinkles of a forehead that already reached to the nape of his neck.

If, however, this was too much of an effort for him, whispered Marianne, then he could feel free to tell his entire life balancing story to Inge the cleaning lady who, as always, was going to care well for him: since she turned off her hearing aid most of the time anyway, it was a good idea to tell her about his great life on a daily basis –and in the process, he could include all his small, big and even bigger indecencies in detail! Wasn’t this a great way to spend the day for a man in his prime! And – without catching air – she happily told him that now, in a real hurry, she had to be on her way to the airport, since she was flying to the Algarve with their daughter Carola to play golf! Even from the already open door, she managed to send an entire salve of the hottest kisses towards her ’Colonel ’ …

(Translated by EG)

Hans Bonfigt
Thursday May 11th, 2017

Entartete Kunst

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