In what almost seems to be a demonstration of her frustration at certain governments’ traditional opposition to stronger government regulation in national and international  economic matters (but what really is the difference between national and international these days?), German Chancellor Angela Merkel will openly go head-on with the European Commission in Brussels and continue to support an über-German corporate governance rule which will continue to shield poor little German car giant Volkswagen from a possible hostile takeover. An impossible hostile takeover, I should say.

It seems that while the US and the UK could simply not do enough to regulate the frenzied financial markets in the past, for instance (at least not enough as seen through German eyes), Germany can never do enough to unfairly protect German industry at home. And a prime example of this is the controversial “VW law” Merkel will now be championing in Brussels – it cements a blocking minority stake in Volkswagen by the state of Lower Saxony. Well, controversial isn’t really the proper term for this law. It’s only controversial in places other than Germany.

Like the LAPD, Merkel has promised to protect and defend,only this time its Germany’s powerhouse icon VW, one of the few companies that needs state protection of any kind, and strangely, she is protecting it against the rest of the under-regulated world, this including a substantial portion of Europe itself, or at least the Europe that is represented by the European Commission.

Things are different in Germany than everywhere else, you see. Everything is so much more gemütlich (cosy) here. And although the cries are often loudest and first to be heard here when it comes to calls for transparency and allowing everybody to play on the same fair international playing field, the Germans are clearly more equal than the rest of us are when it comes to protecting German industry.

So when you hear these “I told you so!” comments like the recent chastising of the US and the UK for finally saying yes, “we need more transparency, we need better standards for rating agencies” in matters of financial market policy, don’t forget about where this criticism is coming from. Because when it comes to looking out for number one over here, things get measured with a different measure than is used elsewhere. And that’s transparent for anyone who cares to take a closer look.

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