West Germany: The Rubber Lion Strikes Again

People are always underrating Ludwig Erhard. Many were sure that he was not enough of a politician to carry his Christian Democratic Union to victory in last month's elections. When Erhard won overwhelmingly, doubters predicted humiliating defeat for him in the intricate task of forming a new Cabinet. The Gummilöwe (Rubber Lion) would surely knuckle under to Bonn's wily professional politicians in the scramble for ministerial seats.

Erhard's amiable way of meeting the challenge was to let the pros blow off steam. Postponing decisions until the week before the Bundestag convened on...

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