Presentation on theme: "German politics: An introduction. Some key features Remade democracy Moderate multipartyism Consensus rather than adversarial democracy Federal – but."— Presentation transcript:
Shaping postwar Germany Allied intentions Licensing participants The Cold War Building institutions –Political Engineering in the west? –Cloning in the east?
Shaping the Federal Republic Constitutional engineering: Attempts to ensure democracy –Citizens’ rights up front Attempts to ensure stability –Recourse to federalism as a source of checks and balances –Positive vote of non-confidence –Parties to shape democratic will Possibility of banning parties which do not Constitutional limits on the external use of force
Seizing opportunities: the cold war Joining Europe Joining NATO The social market economy (Ludwig Erhard) The Marshall Plan and the economic miracle (wunderwirtschaft Result: –a Germany embedded in Europe and the west
FRG & DDR But also a Germany embedded in the east FRG: explicitly federal DDR: centralized command economy
Remaking political culture FRG: –Making democrats –Making participants –Dealing with the past Silence Education Historians’ debate DDR: –Doing it their way: –Remake the economy: build socialism and you solve the problem
Parties and political forces 1949 as the ‘last election of Weimar’ 5% threshold & its impact: –Use of MMP, double vote –Smaller parties eliminated or absorbed –FRG ends up with three party system (later four, then five parties) SPDFDP
Consensus democracy: FRG a system with strong, generally effective leaders Also a system in which it is difficult for any single actor to assert his or her will Coalition government as the norm Fact of federalism: (16 provinces or laender) –Leander built into the federal political system via the Bundesrat (Federal Council) –Enjoy collective veto over all legislation affecting the laender Inclusion of organized interests in policy processes Both encourage a politics of consultation & quiet negotiation – working it out beforehand