“Leading German economists” tells us that cutting Russian gas will cause 400 000 German workers to loose their jobs as factories are forced to close or go bankrupt.
These are the same economists who talk actively about the benefits of austerity inside the EU even when the results are perverse.
They are the same people who have advise their companies and political leaders to invest in plant and factories that are big users of Russian gas.
This gas is cheap and allows them to produce goods in Germany that can be exported with fat profits. Russian gas is relatively cheap because the Germans are big buyers and have been able to secure low cost long-term contracts with Merkel’s full political support. Germany is a big country with plenty of political clout!
These economists all know that the existing use of fossil gas pollutes the atmosphere, but they have not advised the factory owners and their management to seek out alternative solutions. They have a major cost advantage in gas procurement and all other solutions are more expensive.
German profits matter above Ukrainian lives.
In fact they have been doing quite the opposite – they have been quietly building Nord Stream 2 for more secure supplies of Russian gas. They have increased their dependency on Russian fossil fuels when the whole world has been screaming that such a policy is foolish. There is no need for for talk about hindsight – FinnishNews reported the following in 2017:
“NordStream is Russia’s plan to squeeze the Ukraine, by effectively being able to replace the pipeline that goes through Ukraine from Russia with the new gas NordStream pipeline under the Baltic. The EU, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Denmark and Sweden oppose this pipeline, but it looks like Germany makes all the decisions in the EU today.”
Germany benefited from a generous share of the United States’ Marshall Plan in 1947 and thereafter. This massive financial support effectively helped repair and integrate the economies of Europe, a solution that enabled a huge accumulation of wealth for hard-working Germans. Germany’s political power increased with their strong economic performance, that was further boosted by low cost Russian fossil fuels.
The money paid to Russia over the months, years and decades is financing the brutal military invasion of Ukraine by Russia. All purchases of fossil fuels from Russia by all EU members need to stop now – and that includes Germany.
The loss of 400 000 German jobs is just a number invented by German economists. It may be true or not. They have been wrong about austerity too!
Even it is true, then think for a moment about those who have been killed in Ukraine by Russian murderers. If the number of Ukrainian dead soldiers and civilians 20 000, then Ukraine has lost 20 000 workers for ever. If they had an average remaining working life of 20 years then it is the equivalent of 400 000 man-years lost!
If 400 000 Germans loose their jobs for six months then that is 200 000 man-years lost, and they are still alive to work when new sources of fuel are found or energy efficiency solutions are implemented. Not only have too many Ukrainians already died, but homes, towns and cities have seen unbelievable destruction. We can see that on every television screen and in every newspaper. We are witnessing serious war crimes in Europe by Putin’s army.
German economists should feel ashamed of themselves. They are making assumptions about future profits for big companies that have pocketed huge profits without caring about the very obvious risks that have now been realised with Russian aggression in Ukraine.
They are effectively saying that Ukrainian lives matter less than democratic values that have given Germany huge increases in the standard of living after WW2 when their prior political leadership was behaving like Putin now!
They are effectively saying that 400 000 people who may loose their jobs for 6 months or a few years need to be protected out of a workforce of over 44 million – that is less than 0.9% of the total German work force!
… and remember people who loose their jobs will mostly find new jobs sooner than later.
Germany must fall in line along with Hungary and Austria for exactly these reasons as above.