Another Day, Another Meaningless Plan

Like Abbott and Costello's "Who's on first?" routine, the coalition agreement unveiled last week by German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder and Green partner Joschka Fischer seems confused about basic issues, and destined to end where it began. But economists aren't laughing, because the E.U.'s biggest economy is also among its sickest: 3.94 million unemployed workers are draining government coffers, the GDP will grow only .5-.75% this year and the budget deficit will bust the E.U.'s 3% limit. Business leaders blame high taxes, expensive welfare programs and rigid labor laws, but the government seems to have learned nothing. "The [plan's] only really specific...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!