Column the one question: the macron spirit

The FDP would be a super opposition party, we could continue to find Christian Lindner stupid. But isn’t it a blessing that he has to govern?

Close to power: FDP man Christian Lindner during the Jamaica exploratory talks alongside Chancellor Angela Merkel Photo: dpa

"What a jerk," said the super woman on the sofa next to me when she saw Christian Lindner on a talk show. Of course, I protect her anonymity, but you can reveal that the FDP leader had not said anything yet. Was not necessary. It burst out of her "naturally" and thus needed no further justification.

Now, one can already get the impression from the media reception and from the exploratory round that there are substantive reasons for the socio-ecological milieu to find Lindner stupid, especially his ideas on increasing global warming. The only difference is that the others actually pursue this policy as well – or watch impotently. You definitely won’t change that with Twitter. In view of the majority situation, only with Lindner.

So let’s think big, so what, and ask why we talk to each other in life. That’s the bond that ties us together. We speak to each other in order to experience ourselves as something in common.

In parts of society that follow the government probes, the culture is completely different. One speaks to the other to find oneself confirmed in the fact that one has nothing to say to each other. "Illuminating the trenches," as Winfried Kretschmann calls it. And then say, "I knew it, they’re assholes." That’s the culture of the old core milieus behind the negotiators, and to which the politicians relate.

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That’s what we have to overcome now. First of all, in the politicized media society, so that the party representatives feel the pressure to get something done, and not the fear of being scolded for it. We need a different way of speaking, certainly controversial, but on the basis that it’s about what we have in common. About us.

Kretschmann and CDU-Strobl in Stuttgart, Kubicki and Habeck in Kiel risked this and managed it well, so it doesn’t seem to be impossible for people. Green explorers are now trying to do that, and for once they really are state of the art.

Now, however, the FDP has a real problem. Lindner has rebuilt it as a liberal alternative to what he sees as its all-social-democratic competitors. Despite the AfD, he has resisted the national liberal temptation. He has served and profited from majority reservations against new socio-ecological and European economic policies with anti-green spin.

German courage, Europe good

The CDU/CSU is weakened, the SPD is languishing, the Greens would have to be on a respirator beyond Jamaica. The FDP would be the absolute super opposition party.

Lindner could continue to micromanage communications, assert the FDP’s otherness, cater to resentment, rhetorically represent the demands of the digital, young society and continue to grow in peace. But now things are different, that’s life.

What has come across about the FDP so far: Oh, God, no more coal-fired power plants. Oh, God, no more diesel cars. That sounds like the usual frightened clinging to the outdated, which really does exist in the social democratic oversupply.

If I understand Lindner correctly, it is now a matter of not denying the future or shouting it down as a social, ecological or economic catastrophe. But rather tackling it. German courage, Europe good.

The Macron spirit as a new culture and umbrella of an experimental majority that engages with each other to get it done: To implant this spirit socially is the greatest and noblest promise of Christian Lindner. It’s now or never.