Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

For The Record  

FTR #195 Update on Corporate Germany

Lis­ten now: Side 1 | Side 2

High­light­ing the Ger­man nation­al­is­tic approach to eco­nom­ics, this pro­gram under­scores the use of “cor­po­ratism” as an instru­ment of polit­i­cal aggres­sion.

Begin­ning with analy­sis of the takeover strug­gle between Voda­phone (a British mobile phone com­pa­ny) and Man­nes­mann (a Ger­man heavy indus­tri­al firm which has branched out into com­mu­ni­ca­tions), the broad­cast dis­cuss­es why “fortress Ger­many” is unlike­ly to revise its approach to cor­po­rate takeovers any time soon. In addi­tion to Ger­man reg­u­la­tions that make hos­tile takeovers extreme­ly dif­fi­cult, many major Ger­man firms are in the hands of foun­da­tions and fam­i­lies. This places many of them beyond the reach of cor­po­rate raiders.

Behind the facade of the “foun­da­tions” and fam­i­lies is the Bor­mann flight cap­i­tal orga­ni­za­tion, an ele­ment Mr. Emory feels will prove to be the deci­sive ele­ment in human affairs (bar­ring a sig­nif­i­cant change in the tide of polit­i­cal events).

The pro­gram sets forth the sys­tem of clan­des­tine con­trol which the Bor­mann group used to mask con­trol of 750 cor­po­rate fronts. These cor­po­rate fronts were the repos­i­to­ries for the liq­uid wealth of the Third Reich, and their own­er­ship is deter­mined by bear­er bonds. After dis­cussing the var­i­ous maneu­vers uti­lized by Bor­mann to hide the true nature of these cor­po­ra­tions, the pro­gram high­lights the Bor­mann group’s behind the-scenes con­trol of the Ger­man cor­po­rate econ­o­my. Next, the pro­gram reca­pit­u­lates the Man­nes­mann fir­m’s par­tic­i­pa­tion in the Bor­mann flight cap­i­tal pro­gram. (This was dis­cussed in FTR-187.) The pro­gram focus­es on the Ger­man polit­i­cal lead­er­ship’s defense of Man­nes­mann against Voda­phone. (This also was dis­cussed in FTR-187.) Both Chan­cel­lor Ger­hard Schroder and Finance Min­is­ter Hans Eichel defend­ed Man­nes­mann.

More impor­tant­ly, Ger­man banks unit­ed to sup­port Man­nes­mann, illus­trat­ing the cohe­sive nature of cor­po­rate Ger­many. Unlike Amer­i­can and British cor­po­ra­tions (which act as inde­pen­dent enti­ties with no cohe­sive nation­al agen­da), Ger­man cor­po­ra­tions act as a coor­di­nat­ed front, with an agen­da of Ger­man nation­al suprema­cy. Next, the pro­gram ana­lyzes a series of maneu­vers that Man­nes­mann under­took to increase its val­ue, there­by mak­ing it more dif­fi­cult for Voda­phone to effect the takeover. These maneu­vers involved com­pa­nies involved with cor­po­rate Ger­many, such as AOL (with joint ven­tures with the afore­men­tioned Ber­tels­mann) and Deutsche Bank. Ulti­mate­ly, this maneu­ver­ing was suc­cess­ful, lead­ing to an arrange­ment in which Man­nes­mann got a 49.9 per­cent deal.

The sec­ond half of the pro­gram deals with the Ger­man maneu­ver­ing (appar­ent­ly suc­cess­ful) to get Caio Koch-Weser appoint­ed as head of the IMF. Hold­ing joint Brazil­ian and Ger­man cit­i­zen­ship, Koch-Weser is more than like­ly affil­i­at­ed with the Bor­mann orga­ni­za­tion. The Ger­man gov­ern­ment (Chan­cel­lor Schroder in par­tic­u­lar) has been lob­by­ing intense­ly to get Koch-Weser named to head the IMF. The Euro­pean Union has closed ranks behind Koch-Weser, who (if appoint­ed) will be in a posi­tion to wield a pro­found influ­ence in much of the cap­i­tal­ist-ori­ent­ed world. (The near finan­cial melt­down of the fall of 1998 illus­trat­ed the major influ­ence that IMF-fund­ed coun­tries can wield on world cap­i­tal mar­kets.)

After briefly review­ing Ger­man cor­po­rate con­trol over the Euro­pean econ­o­my, the broad­cast con­cludes with a look at Pol­ish resis­tance to a hos­tile takeover of a major Pol­ish com­mer­cial bank by Deutsche Bank, as well as Ger­man resis­tance to EU reform of Ger­man bank­ing pro­ce­dures. It should be not­ed that the Pol­ish resis­tance to the Deutsche Bank takeover is unusu­al. Where­as Ger­man lead­ers have behaved nation­al­is­ti­cal­ly to takeover bids, the lead­ers of coun­tries whose com­pa­nies have been bought out by Ger­man firms have remained silent. (Record­ed on 2/20/2000.)


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