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Austria: No new elections

by generic Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 02:17:31 PM EST

Since Christian Kern has succeeded the chancellorship there have been non stop rumors of early elections. First came the CETA theater where the socialists stated concerns and the conservatives insisted. The only product was a legally non binding document, popularly derided as a "Beipackzettel", the common term for usage advisories packed with medicine. Entirely unrelated there is apopular petition against CETA and TiPP closing today that is expected to give a strong showing.
Still there were voices that insisted that only the delay in the presidential elections stopped Kern's diabolical plans for new elections.
Now the coalition partners have produced a document that is supposed to be the base for the next 18 months. I skimmed through it below the fold.

Frontpaged - Frank Schnittger

It starts with not particularly objectionable tax cuts and reduced social contributions. The first point that jumps out here is 1.7, earlier write off for investments in machinery in 2017. Notable because the chancellor was in favor of machine taxes once upon a time.
1.8 High rents caused by demand and supply. More private capital in social housing. A bit of nudging.
1.9 Labour flexibility. Basically nothing. A deadline for the social partners without any clear statement what the goal is.
1.11 They want to change EU legislation so jobs can be offered preferably to Austrians, family transfer payments to be indexed to country.
1.19 Easier firing for new hires at 50+.
1.23 Excellence cluster, start up word salad. State guarantees, no actual money.
2.2 Access limits for universities. The socialists always opposed this. More autonomy for schools, "objective criteria" for resources. Everyone to get a laptop.
3.2 "market conform" subsidy regime for renewables. Not defined what exactly.
3.4 Plan to have a plan about climate and environment.

4. Security:
Leading anti state groups to be made a crime.
More surveillance everywhere, automatic scan of license plates. Apparently some pre crime going on here: "persons suspected of terroristic crimes to be taken into custody". Supposedly for a reasonable value of "suspected" that is already the case?
Not 5 because immigration is now security. Burka ban, "value contracts", sanctions for non compliance, "the state to be religiously neutral" in particular judges and prosecutors. I don't think I have to spell out what that means? Commercial transport to be made liable for transporting illegals, border controls.

Everything to be cost neutral.

In case anyone wondered: European Social Democrats, still worse than useless. Update [2017-1-30 21:39:38 by generic]: I forgot to mention the 1500/month minimum wage that is supposed to be negotiated by the social partners within the year. Not sure what that would make after social contributions but it is still the one clearly positive point.

European Social Democrats, useless for decades, and still getting worse.

But, to be fair... it's a social democrat / christian democrat fudge package.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 06:01:41 PM EST
OK, the numbers are in for the CETA/TISA/TiPP initiative: 562.552. That would make it the 10th in the history of the 2nd Austrian Republic. Far above the symbolic 100k needed to force discussion in parliament but unlikely to be enough to put serious pressure on the chancellor.
by generic on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 08:43:00 PM EST
Far above the symbolic 100k needed to force discussion in parliament but unlikely to be enough to put serious pressure on the chancellor.

Like this here is a direct quote from the program:

Bilanz der gemeinsamen Regierungsarbeit 2016 - Arbeitsprogramm.pdf -

Qualitativ gut gemachte und
transparent verhandelte Handelsabkommen beleben die Wirtschaft und sichern somit Arbeitsplätze. Gerade aufgrund der geänderten handelspolitischen Rahmenbedingungen nach der Wahl des neuen US-Präsidenten und dem geplanten Austritt Großbritanniens aus der EU ist der Abschluss solcher Handelsabkommen für die Exportnation Österreich von besonderer Bedeutung. Durch eine Erweiterung des Exportradius kann sichergestellt werden, dass Österreich wie bisher von Wirtschaftswachstum außerhalb der EU profitiert.

(Undefined) trade agreements are good because Trump and Brexit.

by generic on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 09:59:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Just had the (conservative) interior minister on TV. Being asked how the train services are supposed to check the papers of passengers he gave a very plausible impression of having not the slightest idea what the question was about. That paragraph is the only explicit change of the text of a law in the whole program and the chief negotiator of the security chapter doesn't know what's in there?

§ 111 FPG (Fremdenpolizeigesetz), Pflichten der Beförderungsunternehmer - JUSLINE Österreich -

(4) Wird ein Fremder, der mit einem Luft-, Land- oder Wasserfahrzeug eines Beförderungsunternehmers nach Österreich gebracht wurde, zurückgewiesen, ist der Beförderungsunternehmer verpflichtet, auf eigene Kosten dessen unverzügliche Abreise zu gewährleisten.

Among other things.

by generic on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 09:10:16 PM EST
Seems we have found the reason for interior minister Sobotka's love for surveillance systems:

Last part of his answer: No it is about prevention. One example: Several years ago there was repeatedly human feces lying in front of my house door. Once I installed a camera....

by generic on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 01:34:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
At least he didn't use it as an argument for a DNA database....
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 01:51:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Two final points I thought about:
Firstly free University access is something of a prestige issue. SPÖ chancellor Gusenbauer, the next to last one, ultimately lost his job partly over campaigning for it and then signing up to tuition fees. And I think the conservatives insist on limiting access partly because they know it makes the socdem base livid. So the relative qiet in the party now doesn't portend well.

The second point: The security and immigration chapter being rolled into one has the effect of integration minister and chancellor candidate in waiting Sebastian Kurz not having to serve as the public face of any of the policies.

by generic on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 09:47:16 AM EST

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