Tag Archives: Austria

Angela Merkel's German government facing collapse over her immigration stance

merkel muslim

Merkel: “Islam is not a source of terror”


Shocker, not.
From Fox News: Angela Merkel’s government is on the brink as the German chancellor battles her coalition partners on immigration and asylum seekers.
The coalition between Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) and the Bavarian Christian Social Union (CSU) has fractured over the latter’s new proposed policy that would turn away more asylum seekers at the country’s borders.
The policy flies in the face of the most powerful woman in the world and de factor leader of the European Union. In 2015, her ‘open door’ policy to migrants saw approximately a million refugees flood into the country. Although migrant arrivals have dropped steeply in the past two years, Germany still registered around 11,000 new asylum-seekers each month.
Her decision is believed to be a major contributing factor to the surge in support for the far-Right and anti-Islam Alternative for Germany (AfD), which became the third-largest party in Germany after the 2017 federal election when it won 94 seats in the Bundestag.
Horst Seehofer, the CSU interior minister, whose party is facing regional elections in October, wants Germany to turn back refugees who have already registered in other European countries. He also wants to block migrants whose asylum applications in Germany have already been rejected from returning.
Merkel fears such a move could increase the burden on countries include Italy, Greece and Spain, believing it could potentially fracture the European Union even further. While she wants to see a bilateral agreement at a EU summit and the end of June, the CSU has set her an effective ultimatum of next Monday.
“Personally, I think that illegal migration is one of the challenges for the European Union and therefore I believe that we shouldn’t act unilaterally, that we shouldn’t act without coordination and that we shouldn’t act in a way that burdens third parties, involved,” Merkel said.
Wolfgang Schaueble, the former finance minister and current parliamentary president who is respected on both sides, has been asked to mediate negotiations between the CDU and CSU. “We are in a serious, a very serious situation,” said Alexander Dobrindt, the CSU parliamentary group leader.
A poll published on Thursday by German broadcaster ARD found that 62 per cent of its citizens believe refugees without papers should not be allowed in.
The CSU fears that anti-immigration sentiment in the country could bring an end to its decades-old stranglehold on Bavaria’s government. They face crucial regional elections in October.
The coalition’s center-left ally, the Social Democrat Party (SPD), has demanded that the dispute be settled. Andrea Nahles, the leader of the SDP, accused Markus Soeder, the governor of Bavaria, and Seehofer of “taking all of Germany and Europe hostage”.
She added that Soeder was acting like a “bonsai Trump”. 
Olaf Scholz, the SPF finance minister, said: “The task of governing our country is not an episode of Game of Thrones, but a very serious matter. Those involved should not forget that.”
Adding to tensions, a Twitter hoax made Germans think the government had already collapsed. An account claiming to be Hessicher Rundfunk state broadcaster claimed Seehofer had dissolved the alliance, but minutes later it was confirmed to be fake.
Germany has seen more than one million asylum seekers arrive since 2015 since Merkel introduced her open door policy, but she has even acknowledged the need to strengthen the EU’s external borders.
Both Austria and Italy have seen anti-immigrant parties come to power since 2015. On Wednesday, during a meeting with Seehofer, Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz voices his approval of Seehofer’s ideas.  “In our view, we need an ‘axis of the willing’ in the fighter against illegal migration,” Kurz said.
Merkel has served as chancellor of Germany since 2005 and has come top of Forbes list of the 100 most powerful women in the world for 11 of the past 12 years.
See also:

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Austrian President calls on all women to wear headscarves in solidarity with Muslims

Van der Bellen Austria president

Austria President Van der Bellen


Um, NO.
From Independent UK: The President of Austria has called for all women to wear headscarves in solidarity with Muslims to fight “rampant Islamophobia”.
Alexander Van der Bellen, the left-wing former Green Party leader who narrowly beat a far-right candidate to take office in January, said freedom of expression was a fundamental right.
“It is every woman’s right to always dress how she wants, that is my opinion on the matter,” he told an audience of school pupils.
“And it is not only Muslim women, all women can wear a headscarf, and if this real and rampant Islamaphobia continues, there will come a day where we must ask all women to wear a headscarf – all – out of solidarity to those who do it for religious reasons.”
Mr. Van der Bellen was responding to a question from a schoolgirl who argued a ban on Islamic headscarves or veils would reduce women to their appearance, rather than accomplishments, and shut some out of the labour market.
His comments were made in March but emerged after being broadcast on Austrian television, amid debate in the country and neighbouring Germany about “burqa bans”.
A spokesperson said that following Isis-linked terror attacks across Europe, Mr. Van der Bellen would like to see Muslim representatives in Austria make “clearer statements” emphasising that the atrocities could not be justified within Islam.
Read the rest of the story here.
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Teacher Gang Raped By 9 Iraqi Immigrants in Vienna Attack

rapefugees
From Express UK: Prosecutors charge the Iraqi men with “abuse of a defenceless person and rape in a very humiliating and agonising way for the victim”.
At the opening of the trial yesterday the court heard how the woman identified as Sabine K. was “blind drunk” when she went with the men to an apartment. Most of them deny the charges but DNA proved that sperm from six of them was found in or on her body.
The court heard how the victim arrived in Vienna on December 28, 2015 to spend the New Year with a female friend in the city. Shortly before midnight on December 31 they wandered into the city centre to join milling crowds celebrating the arrival of 2016 and at 2.00am were seen drinking in a bar-restaurant called Cactus.
Shortly before 3.00am the friend of Sabine noticed she was no longer there and was told by another patron that the men she had been talking with had “taken her away.”
The defendants, aged between 22 and 45, all arrived in Austria between May and December 2015 via the Balkan route. At the time of the attack, five of them had cemented their right to stay, the applications of the other four were still pending.
Judge Petra Poschalko heard how the woman was taken by four of them to an apartment in Vienna’s Rustenschacher Allee where five other men were waiting. Sabine later said she found herself naked on a double bed being assaulted by the men one after the other. Evidence was heard that said she was assaulted in the dark so she could not identify the men, according to her lawyer Karina Fehringer.
After the attacks, which went on for several hours, the victim needed in-patient treatment at a trauma clinic and now is under psychiatric care for post traumatic stress disorder. She had another breakdown at the weekend and was too fragile to be in court to face her attackers.
Only one man, Mohamed Al-A., 31, admitted his role in the rapes and he sobbed in court and said he was “really drunk” on vodka at the time. And he further admitted: “This act is a crime in Iraq.”
He was with co-defendants Nazar Al-J., Mohammed Al-T. and Alaa Al-J. in the Cactus bar who took the victim back to the apartment. The other defendants – Hader Al-A., Mustafa Al-J., Nael Al-J., Marwan Al-J. und Sabah Al-J. – lay in wait for her there. Medical experts testified she was raped multiple times and sodomised.
The victim said she yelled at them, in German: “No, I don’t want this.” Then in English: “Listen to me, just a little bit.” Her attackers conversed only in Arabic.
Alaa Al-J. was said to be the rape ringleader. After it was over Mohammed Al-. escorted her to a toilet in the flat where he took a selfie with her on his mobile phone. Later he and Alaa Al-J. escorted her to a nearby tram stop where they tried to stem her sobbing by saying in English: “Don’t cry.”
After she went to police a tracking app on her mobile phone led officers to the rape scene. The app showed that her ordeal lasted from 4:20am to 6:20am on January 1 2016.
The court heard that with the exception of the man who confessed, none of the others feel guilty. Several denied rape in the face of the DNA evidence. One man claimed that the woman had been “offered” to them by relatives: another that she was a willing participant in whatever took place.
Judge Poaschalko seemed visibly angered at the shifts in their stories throught Tuesday’s hearing. The court resumes again on Thursday and sentencing will be handed down on March 6. She has warned them they face up to 15 years each in jail.
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Tony Blair sees dangerous times ahead for Western democracies

tony-blair
From USA Today: Former British prime minister Tony Blair warns that political upheaval from Great Britain’s Brexit vote in June to the collapse of the Italian government on Sunday signals the most dangerous time for Western democracies in decades.
“It does feel perilous, actually, because I think there are decisions that are being taken of vast moment in circumstances where systems are fragile,” he told Capital Download on Monday. “And that is troubling.”
It has been a year of unexpected victories by populist and nationalistic forces that are challenging the establishment: passage of the referendum pulling Britain from the European Union, the election of Donald Trump as president in the United States, defeat of a measure in Italy that prompted the prime minister to announce his resignation. And in the Austrian election Sunday, the candidate representing the party founded by former Nazis lost — but after commanding 46% of the vote.

Michael Bloomberg at a No Labels conference...you know he's not bipartisan.

Michael Bloomberg at a No Labels conference…you know he’s not bipartisan.


Blair, who was in Washington to address a conference sponsored by the bipartisan group No Labels, announced last week the launch of a new organization that will try to help build a more muscular policy agenda for centrists and encourage networking among them across Europe, in the United States and elsewhere. Given the rise of extreme voices on the left and right, he said, “I’m not sure we’re asking the right questions right now, never mind giving the right answers.”
Of particular concern to him is a “longing” for an authoritarian leader.
Dog eyeroll
“It’s amazing how many people you will find who will reference a style of leadership of (Russian) President Putin in a positive way,” he told USA TODAY’s weekly video newsmaker series. “I think people want their country moving and they think that if the present system is not moving it, and not making the changes that they want to see, then maybe someone who just says, ‘I don’t care what anyone thinks; I’m just going to go for it, and this is what I’m going to do’ — that has a certain attraction.
“If the center isn’t a place of strength and vitality, and it looks kind of flabby and just managing the status quo, then you’re at risk of someone coming along and doing that.”
In his speech to the No Labels conference, he faulted some centrist political leaders for failing to do enough to improve the economic prospects for workers disrupted by globalization and to ensure a sense of personal safety at a time, for instance, that Great Britain and other European countries have absorbed a wave of immigrants from Syria. “People will only put aside prejudices if they think there are rules,” he said.
Blair sees a common thread from Brexit’s passage to Trump’s election to support for Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, a provocative figure whose anti-drug campaign is blamed for thousands of deaths.
“There is immense amount of anger at established ways of doing things,” Blair said. “There is, I think, a whole group of people who feel ignored by those in power, that is for sure true. There is more anger around in politics than for a long time.” While issues such as immigration aren’t new, there is “much greater skepticism towards globalization and the benefits of it.”
What’s more, “social media is a revolutionary phenomenon,” he went on. “It changes the way politics works. It changes the way the media works. If we’re not careful, it locks people into conversations with people who just agree with them, and who then have a general conspiracy-theory view of the rest of the world.
liberal media bias
Blair has never met Trump and didn’t criticize him. Asked about whether it was wise for Trump to accept a congratulatory telephone call from the president of Taiwan — the sort of conversation every American president since 1979 deliberately has avoided — Blair demurred. “I’m not going to get into your politics,” he began. “To be honest, in the end, I’ll tell you what I really think: Let’s see how it works out.”
“I’m less worried about America than I am about Europe; I’ll be very frank with you,” he said. “America is such a strong country and you’ve got so many checks-and-balances and you’ve got such resilience in your economy and so on; you guys will do fine, I’m sure. In Europe, we have systems that are at a point of fragility that troubles me.
Blair was just 54 years old when he moved out of 10 Downing Street after serving as prime minister from 1997 to 2007. His political appeal for a “new way” was akin to President Bill Clinton’s “third way” for Democrats here, and he was a crucial ally for President George W. Bush during the Iraq War.
Now he offers a bit of free advice for President Obama, who will move out the White House next month at age 55: Find a cause.
Don't worry Tony, Obama's found a cause. The same one he's been working on for the past eight years!

Don’t worry Tony, Obama’s found a cause…he’s been working on it for the past eight years!


“When you’ve got young political leaders and then they leave office young, you’ve got to find something that really motivates you,” he said. “The reason I spent so much time on the Middle East is that I’m deeply motivated by it. But you’ve got to find something that gets you up in the morning with the same sense of purpose and excitement as happened when you were prime minister or president.”
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Europeans stocking up on guns after massive sex attacks

Makes perfectly good sense to me.
rapefugees
Europeans (particularly women and cops) are stocking up on guns for personal protection in the wake of the New Year’s Eve refugee sex attacks.
The New York Post reports that the number of gun permits issued has recently quadrupled in Germany and Austria after the attacks in Cologne and Salzburg, according to the weapons industry. “Women customers include waitresses that need to get home in the evening, and women that walk dogs regularly in the evenings. We are also seeing some coming in to buy them for their daughters,” Gerhard Fuchs, a gunsmith in Innsbruck, Austria, told Central European News.

 Vienna Mayor Michael Haupl

Vienna Mayor Michael Haupl


And why did Vienna allows these people to arrive in the first place? They knew of the criminal statistics: One in three criminals in Austria are foreigners, according to 2014 figures by the Interior Ministry. In Vienna, it was almost every other criminal. Vienna has had 200,000 asylum-seekers entered the country in recent months. Now the Vienna Mayor Michael Haupl has promised to deploy 1,000 additional cops to patrol the streets.
In August, fewer than 10 people obtained a license to keep a handgun at home for self-defense, while the number soared into the hundreds in October. Sixty percent of respondents in a poll commissioned by Viennese newspaper Heute said the influx of refugees is a cause for fear and unease.
Franz Dorfner, who owns a gun store in Vienna, said he has been unable to keep up with demand. “I have completely sold out of pepper spray and have to wait at least a month before they can provide me with any more,” he told Central European News.
In Salzburg, where several sex attacks were reported, store owner Constanze Dorn said she too had run out of pepper spray. “I have never experienced anything like it,” she said. “I have ordered several hundred more. I don’t know how long they will last.”
The demand for private bodyguard services also has skyrocketed. In Vienna, the White Wings Association is offering free professional protection after the city’s top cop warned women not to go out alone at night. “Women should in general not go out on the streets at night alone, they should avoid suspicious-looking areas and also when in pubs and clubs should only accept drinks from people they know,” Police Chief Garhard Purstl said in controversial statements to the Krone newspaper.
The public’s worries about the surge of immigrants were already heightened before the recent sex attacks. Lisa Herdina, 28, who lives near Austria’s largest refugee camp at Traiskirchen, about 12 miles south of Vienna, told the mirror.co.uk in early December that she got a rifle. “I keep my gun in my house because it gives me a feeling of safety, especially when I’m alone,” Herdina said. “My dog is great protection because he warns me every time anybody is anywhere near our house.”
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Oliver is alive because of you

“Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you.” -Jeremiah 1:5

20 weeks (2)A human person at 20 weeks (or 5 months)

On Friday, January 25, 2013, a record hundreds of thousands of pro-lifers Marched For Life in Washington, D.C.
In so doing, they risked being identified as “low-level terrorists” by their own government. (See my post of Jan. 22, 2013: “Pentagon: Protests are ‘low level terrorism‘.”

March for Life 2013Photos taken by LifeSiteNews (to which good cause I’ve donated!)

Huddled under winter coats and hats and scarves, they gathered on the Mall in Washington D.C. to send a clear message to politicians in the Capitol, and the whole country: 40 years is too long, abortion must end! Despite the frigid January temperatures, the crowd, made up largely of teens and young adults, was boisterous, with many groups chanting pro-life slogans and singing hymns as they walked.
March for Life 2013 a
They were also well-behaved, peaceful, even joyous, and did not leave the Mall littered with trash.

March for Life 2013 bTo see more of LifeSiteNews’ pics from March for Life 2013, go here.

This year’s March marked the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, since which an estimated 55 million babies have been killed by abortion in America.
The story below is one reason why hundreds of thousands of Americans — labeled “low level terrorists” by the Obama regime — marched for life.
~Eowyn

This is Oliver, and he is living because of you’: an emotional meeting in a park

by Adam Cassandra – LifeSiteNews – Jan 15, 2013
Standing outside of an abortion clinic is not a pleasant experience. No matter how many friends or family members are there praying and helping to counsel women close by, the thought of innocent lives being ended in the building right behind you is inescapable. Sometimes it can seem like no one is even listening, and the people going into the clinic pass by pretending they don’t notice you. But God is there reaching out to those women who will open their hearts to Him. That’s when a miracle can happen, and a life can be saved.
Such is the experience of Joannes Bucher who came face-to-face with a child saved thanks to his pro-life activism.

Joannes_BucherJoannes Bucher

While praying and passing out literature in front of an abortion clinic in Vienna, Austria one day, Joannes became distraught when it appeared none of the women he tried to talk to were going to choose life for their babies.
“Their hearts were really frozen, and they didn’t take any information. And I thought, ‘Wow, what’s going on? It’s really a sad world,’” said Joannes, who is Human Life International’s (HLI) regional director of Europe, in a video interview released last week.
The video is a bonus clip from HLI’s new documentary “Central and Eastern Europe: A Return to Life” which aired on EWTN at 10:00pm EST on January 25, the evening of the 40th March for Life in Washington, D.C.
After a somber day of standing in front of Vienna’s abortion mill, Joannes and his team of pro-life counselors decided to go relax at a park that was close by. There he would meet someone who would change his life.
“As we were in the park, this beautiful area behind the Schloss Schönbrunn, we played frisbee,” Joannes said. “It was a beautiful day … we made a circle and shot the frisbee to each other. And suddenly a woman with a stroller came around and passed us … And I said, ‘Hey do you want to play with us?’ And she said yes.”
“And as I walked to her, of course I just mentioned that she had a beautiful baby. And she said, ‘Yes of course. This is all that I have. It’s a miracle. … But don’t we know each other? Aren’t you the guy who gave me the booklet and motivated me not to have the abortion?’ And I was just shocked,” he said.
As the others gathered around to hear the conversation, the woman with her child said to Joannes, “This is Oliver, and he is living because of you.”
“That was really emotional,” Joannes recalled.
Not only did Joannes have an impact on this woman to save little Oliver’s physical life, but she asked that he continue to be involved in his spiritual life as well.
“She said immediately, ‘A lot of people in my family were against me [having this baby]. Are you ready to be the godfather?’ She wanted to baptize him. … And now I’m the godfather,” said Joannes.
With the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade next week, Joannes’ story is an inspirational reminder of the real impact pro-life advocates can have in the fight to protect and defend unborn life. While the media will be working to ignore the hundreds of thousands of people marching through Washington, D.C., it’s clear that public prayer and support for the pro-life cause can help women open their hearts to God and choose life for their babies.

“If you work for Him, He will use you,” said Joannes. “And He needs you, and He will give you the best He can and honor you in His way.”

Adam Cassandra is a communications specialist at Human Life International (www.hli.org), the world’s largest international pro-life and pro-family organization. Follow him on Twitter: @adamcassandra.

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Don't let freedom slip away: A Nazi survivor warns America

Kitty Werthmann, 85, is the president of the South Dakota Eagle Forum.
Werthmann was born in Austria, lived for 7 years under the Nazi regime (the word Nazi is an abbreviation of National Socialism), followed by 3 years under Soviet occupation. So she knows very well what socialism, oppression, and the loss of liberty are.
In the essay below, Werthmann describes how Hitler came to power and the steps taken by the Nazi regime which incrementally took away the people’s freedom.
First, the government took control of the schools and got rid of religious instruction. Then, the family was undermined. Next came the socialization of health care, followed by the “mercy killing” of those the regime deemed worthless and burdens on society. Finally, the Nazis went after privately-owned guns.
Sound familiar?
~Eowyn & Joan

America: Don’t Let Freedom Slip Away

By Kitty Werthmann
What I am about to tell you is something you’ve probably never heard or will ever read in history books.
I am an eyewitness to history. I cannot tell you that Hitler took Austria by tanks and guns; it would distort history. We elected him by a landslide – 98% of the vote. I’ve never read that in any American publications. Everyone thinks that Hitler just rolled in with his tanks and took Austria by force.
In 1938, Austria was in deep Depression. Nearly one-third of our workforce was unemployed. We had 25% inflation and 25% bank loan interest rates. Farmers and business people were declaring bankruptcy daily. Young people were going from house to house begging for food. Not that they didn’t want to work; there simply weren’t any jobs. My mother was a Christian woman and believed in helping people in need. Every day we cooked a big kettle of soup and baked bread to feed those poor, hungry people – about 30 daily.
The Communist Party and the National Socialist Party were fighting each other. Blocks and blocks of cities like Vienna, Linz, and Graz, were destroyed. The people became desperate and petitioned the government to let them decide what kind of government they wanted.
We looked to our neighbor on the north, Germany, where Hitler had been in power since 1933. We had been told that they didn’t have
unemployment or crime, and they had a high standard of living.
Nothing was ever said about persecution of any group — Jewish or
otherwise. We were led to believe that everyone was happy. We
wanted the same way of life in Austria. We were promised that a vote for Hitler would mean the end of unemployment and help for the family. Hitler also said that businesses would be assisted, and farmers would get their farms back. 98% of the population voted to annex Austria to Germany and have Hitler for our ruler.
We were overjoyed, and for three days we danced in the streets and had candlelight parades. The new government opened up big field kitchens and everyone was fed.
After the election, German officials were appointed, and like a miracle, we suddenly had law and order. Three or four weeks later, everyone was employed. The government made sure that a lot of work was created through the Public Work Service.
Hitler decided we should have equal rights for women. Before this, it was a custom that married Austrian women did not work outside the home. An able-bodied husband would be looked down on if he couldn’t support his family. Many women in the teaching profession were elated that they could retain the jobs they previously had been required to give up for marriage.
Hitler Targets Education – Eliminates Religious Instruction for Children
Our education was nationalized. I attended a very good public school. The population was predominantly Catholic, so we had religion in our schools. The day we elected Hitler (March 13, 1938), I walked into my schoolroom to find the crucifix replaced by Hitler’s picture hanging next to a Nazi flag. Our teacher, a very devout woman, stood up and told the class we wouldn’t pray or have religion anymore. Instead, we sang “Deutschland, Deutschland, Uber Alles,” and had physical education.
Sunday became National Youth Day with compulsory attendance. Parents were not pleased about the sudden change in curriculum. They were told that if they did not send us, they would receive a stiff letter of warning the first time. The second time they would be fined the equivalent of $300, and the third time they would be subject to jail. The first two hours consisted of political indoctrination. The rest of the day we had sports. As time went along, we loved it. Oh, we had so much fun and got our sports equipment free. We would go home and gleefully tell our parents about the wonderful time we had.
My mother was very unhappy. When the next term started, she took me out of public school and put me in a convent. I told her she couldn’t do that and she told me that someday when I grew up, I would be grateful.
There was a very good curriculum, but hardly any fun – no sports, and no political indoctrination. I hated it at first but felt I could tolerate it. Every once in a while, on holidays, I went home. I would go back to my old friends and ask what was going on and what they were doing. Their loose lifestyle was very alarming to me. They lived without religion. By that time unwed mothers were glorified for having a baby for Hitler. It seemed strange to me that our society changed so suddenly. As time went along, I realized what a great deed my mother did so that I wasn’t exposed to that kind of humanistic philosophy.
Equal Rights Hits Home
In 1939, the war started and a food bank was established. All food was rationed and could only be purchased using food stamps. At the same time, a full-employment law was passed which meant if you didn’t work, you didn’t get a ration card, and if you didn’t have a card, you starved to death. Women who stayed home to raise their families didn’t have any marketable skills and often had to take jobs more suited for men.
Soon after this, the draft was implemented. It was compulsory for young people, male and female, to give one year to the labor corps. During the day, the girls worked on the farms, and at night they returned to their barracks for military training just like the boys. They were trained to be anti-aircraft gunners and participated in the signal corps. After the labor corps, they were not discharged but were used in the front lines. When I go back to  Austria to visit my family and friends, most of these women are emotional cripples because they just were not equipped to handle the horrors of combat. Three months before I turned 18, I was severely injured in an air raid attack. I nearly had a leg amputated, so I was spared having to go into the labor corps and into military service.
Hitler Restructured the Family Through Daycare
When the mothers had to go out into the work force, the government immediately established child care centers. You could take your children ages 4 weeks to school age and leave them there around-the-clock, 7 days a week, under the total care of the government. The state raised a whole generation of children.. There were no motherly women to take care of the children, just people highly trained in child psychology.
By this time, no one talked about equal rights. We knew we had been had.
The Socialization of Health Care

Many American doctors trained at the University of Vienna. After Hitler, health care was socialized, free for everyone. Doctors were salaried by the government. The problem was, since it was free, the people were going to the doctors for everything. When the good doctor arrived at his office at 8 a.m., 40 people were already waiting and, at the same time, the hospitals were full. If you needed elective surgery, you had to wait a year or two for your turn. There was no money for research as it was poured into socialized medicine. Research at the medical schools literally stoppedso the best doctors left  Austria and emigrated to other countries.

As for healthcare, our tax rates went up to 80% of our income.
Newlyweds immediately received a $1,000 loan from the government to establish a household. We had big programs for families. All day care and education were free. High schools were taken over by the government and college tuition was subsidized. Everyone was entitled to free handouts, such as food stamps, clothing, and housing.
We had another agency designed to monitor business. My brother-in-law owned a restaurant that had square tables. Government officials told him he had to replace them with round tables because people might bump themselves on the corners. Then they said he had to have additional bathroom facilities. It was just a small dairy business with a snack bar. He couldn’t meet all the demands. Soon, he went out of business. If the government owned the large businesses and not many small ones existed, it could be in control.
We had consumer protection. We were told how to shop and what to buy. Free enterprise was essentially abolished. We had a planning agency specially designed for farmers. The agents would go to the farms, count the live-stock, then tell the farmers what to produce, and how to produce it.
“Mercy Killing” Redefined
 In 1944, I was a student teacher in a small village in the Alps. The villagers were surrounded by mountain passes which, in the winter, were closed off with snow, causing people to be isolated. So people intermarried and offspring were sometimes retarded. When I arrived, I was told there were 15 mentally retarded adults, but they were all useful and did good manual work. I knew one, named Vincent, very well. He was a janitor of the school. One day I looked out the window and saw Vincent and others getting into a van. I asked my superior where they were going. She said to an institution where the State Health Department would teach them a trade, and to read and write. The families were required to sign papers with a little clause that they could not visit for 6 months. They were told visits would interfere with the program and might cause homesickness.
As time passed, letters started to dribble back saying these people died a natural, merciful death. The villagers were not fooled. We suspected what was happening. Those people left in excellent physical health and all died within 6 months. We called this euthanasia.
The Final Steps – Gun Laws
Next came gun registration. People were getting injured by guns. Hitler said that the real way to catch criminals (we still had a few) was by matching serial numbers on guns. Most citizens were law abiding and dutifully marched to the police station to register their firearms. Not long after-wards, the police said that it was best for everyone to turn in their guns. The authorities already knew who had them, so it was futile not to comply voluntarily.
No more freedom of speech. Anyone who said something against the government was taken away. We knew many people who were arrested, not only Jews, but also priests and ministers who spoke up.
Totalitarianism didn’t come quickly, it took 5 years from 1938 until 1943, to realize full dictatorship in Austria. Had it happened overnight, my countrymen would have fought to the last breath. Instead, we had creeping gradualism. Now, our only weapons were broom handles. The whole idea sounds almost unbelievable that the state, little by little eroded our freedom.
After World War II, Russian troops occupied Austria. Women were raped, preteen to elderly. The press never wrote about this either. When the Soviets left in 1955, they took everything that they could, dismantling whole factories in the process. They sawed down whole orchards of fruit, and what they couldn’t destroy, they burned. We called it The Burned Earth. Most of the population barricaded themselves in their houses. Women hid in their cellars for 6 weeks as the troops mobilized. Those who couldn’t, paid the price. There is a monument in  Vienna today, dedicated to those women who were massacred by the Russians.

This is an eye witness account.
Those of us who sailed past the Statue of Liberty came to a country of unbelievable freedom and opportunity. America truly is the greatest country in the world. Don’t let freedom slip away. For after America, there is no place to go.

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LOL! Skippy Does Austria. It Started in 2008

 Austrian police arrest ‘Obama-mask bank robber’

Police believe the “Obama robber” has carried out a string of raids dating back to 2008
 
 
Police in Austria have arrested a man suspected of robbing banks while wearing a mask of US President Barack Obama.

The man was arrested after an armed robbery in Fornach, north-east of Salzburg, in Upper Austria.
Police said a bank employee was held at gunpoint before the robber fled the scene in a car.
At least six other armed raids have been carried out by the man Austrian media have dubbed the “Obama robber”.
Reports say the latest robbery happened on Thursday afternoon and the man was arrested about an hour later in a nearby wood.
Police spokesman Markus Mitlohner said officers had found a mask, a weapon and stolen money in the wood. Mr Mitlohner told Austrian media that the suspect is a German citizen.
Old-man mask
The masked raids date back to 2008, when the robber wore an old-man mask. Police say he switched to the Obama mask in 2009.
Following the “Obama robber’s” previous raid in the town of Handenberg in January, police said his technique never changed – only his getaway cars.
He turns up in a mask just before closing time, brandishing a silver pistol and a black shoulder bag.
Detectives said at the time he speaks the local dialect but could also be from Bavaria, just across the border in Germany.
It was believed the robber had escaped with 10,000 euros (£8,000, $13,000) in Handenberg although his biggest haul was 40,000 euros in July 2009, the Austrian news website krone.at said.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-12923582
~~LTG

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The Christmas Tablecloth

This story was written by Rev. Howard C. Schade, pastor of the First Reformed Church in Nyack, New York. By the time the story was anthologized in Alice Gray’s Christmas Stories for the Heart in 1998, Rev. Schade already had passed away in 1989 and could not be contacted to verify the details of the story, which is why Snopes calls this story a “legend.”
I choose to believe in the reverend!
H/t beloved fellow Doc’s Wife.
~Eowyn

The Gold and Ivory Tablecloth

By Rev. Howard C. Schade
The brand new pastor and his wife, newly assigned to their first ministry to reopen a church in suburban Brooklyn, arrived in early October excited about their opportunities. When they saw their church, it was very run down and needed much work. They set a goal to have everything done in time to have their first service on Christmas Eve.  
They worked hard, repairing pews, plastering walls, painting, etc., and on December 18 were ahead of schedule and just about finished. On December 19, a terrible tempest — a driving rainstorm — hit the area and lasted for two days.
On the 21st, the pastor went over to the church. His heart sank when he saw that the roof had leaked, causing a large area of plaster about 20 feet by 8 feet to fall off the front wall of the sanctuary just behind the pulpit, beginning about head high.
T he pastor cleaned up the mess on the floor and, not knowing what else to do but postpone the Christmas Eve service, headed home. 
 
On the way he noticed that a local business was having a flea-market type sale for charity so he stopped in. One of the items was a beautiful, handmade, ivory colored, crocheted tablecloth with exquisite work, fine colors and a Cross embroidered right in the center. It was just the right size to cover up the hole in the front wall. He bought it and headed back to the church.
By this time it had started to snow. An older woman running from the opposite direction was trying to catch the bus. She missed it. The pastor invited her to wait in the warm church for the next bus 45 minutes later.
She sat in a pew and paid no attention to the pastor while he got a ladder, hangers, etc., to put up the tablecloth as a wall tapestry. The pastor could hardly believe how beautiful it looked and it covered up the entire problem area.
Then he noticed the woman walking down the center aisle. Her face was like a sheet….
“Pastor,” she asked, “where did you get that tablecloth?”
The pastor explained. The woman asked him to check the lower right corner to see if the initials EBG were crocheted into it there.
They were. These were the initials of the woman, and she had made this tablecloth 35 years before, in Austria.  
The woman could hardly believe it as the pastor told how he had just gotten the tablecloth. The woman explained that before the war she and her husband were well-to-do people in Austria. When the Nazis came, she was forced to leave. Her husband was going to follow her the next week. She was captured, sent to prison and never saw her husband or her home again.
T he pastor wanted to give her the tablecloth; but she made the pastor keep it for the church. The pastor insisted on driving her home, that was the least he could do.  She lived on the other side of Staten Island and was only in Brooklyn for the day for a housecleaning job.
W hat a wonderful service they had on Christmas Eve. The church was almost full. The music and the spirit were great. At the end of the service, the pastor and his wife greeted everyone at the door and many said that they would return.
One older man, whom the pastor recognized from the neighborhood continued to sit in one of the pews and stare, and the pastor wondered why he wasn’t leaving.
The man asked him where he got the tablecloth on the front wall because it was identical to one that his wife had made years ago when they lived in Austria before the war and how could there be two tablecloths so much alike. He told the pastor how the Nazis came, how he forced his wife to flee for her safety and he was supposed to follow her, but he was arrested and put in a prison. He never saw his wife or his home again all the 35 years in between.
The pastor asked him if he would allow him to take him for a little ride. They drove to Staten Island and to the same house where the pastor had taken the woman three days earlier.
He helped the man climb the three flights of stairs to the woman’s apartment, knocked on the door and he saw the greatest Christmas reunion he could ever imagine.

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Man Fined For Offending Muslims By Yodeling

This is political correctness gone mad.
A man in Austria was fined by a judge for yodeling while mowing his lawn because — get this — his Muslim neighbors were “offended.” They said the man’s yodeling was really a mocking mimicry of the Muslim call to prayer called muezzin, which if you recall, Obama had called “the prettiest sound in the world.”
As reported by Elad Benari of IsraelNationalNews on December 15, 2010, “Austria: Judge Rules That Yodeling Offends Muslims“:

It seems as though in Austria, the popular yodel is an insult to Muslims. An Austrian court has recently fined a citizen for yodeling while mowing his lawn, according to a report in The Kronen Zeitung newspaper.
The citizen, 63-year-old Helmut G., was told by the court that his yodeling offended his next-door Muslim neighbors, who accused him of trying to mock and imitate the call of the Muezzin.
In Muslim tradition, the Muezzin is the chosen person at a mosque who leads the call to prayer at Friday services and the five daily times for prayer from one of the mosque’s minarets.
The yodel is a song which is sung with an extended note which rapidly and repeatedly changes in pitch and makes a high-low-high-low sound. Developed in the Central Alps as a method of communication between alpine mountaineers or between alpine villages, the yodel later became part of the region’s traditional lore and musical expression. The technique is used in many cultures throughout the world and Austria is one of the countries where it is most popular.
Unfortunately for Helmut G., his neighbors were in the middle of a prayer when he started to yodel. The Kronen Zeitung reported that he was fined 800 Euros after judges ruled that he could have tried to offend his neighbors and ridicule their belief.
Helmut G. clarified that “It was not my intention to imitate or insult them. I simply started to yodel a few tunes because I was in such a good mood.”

This is what Wikipedia says about yodel:

Yodeling…is a form of singing that involves singing an extended note which rapidly and repeatedly changes in pitch from the vocal or chest register (or “chest voice”) to the falsetto/head register; making a high-low-high-low sound…. In Alpine folk music, it was developed in the Central Alps as a method of communication between alpine mountaineers or between alpine villages, with this non-musical multi-pitched “yelling” later becoming part of the region’s traditional lore and musical expression.

Here’s what yodeling sounds like:

Here’s what muezzin sounds like:

Even if the man was yodeling to mock the Muezzin, so what? Since when is mocking someone against the law? Well, it is in Austria!
God help us.
H/t beloved fellow Will.
P.S. This story sounds so preposterous, I thought I should try to verify it. Well, there is an Austrian newspaper called Kronen Zeitung, and the story is verified by the German blog Kobuk!.
~Eowyn

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