Guest comment by Peter Schwerdtmann: Political failure

If you have a keen sense, you can already guess that even the overwhelming opinion of the majority cannot cover the facts in the long run. The expectations of the Leipzig judgment on diesel driving bans were presumably too high.

According to the Federal Administrative Court, the problem does not go away with a loud bang. Instead, there is growing awareness that everything will take a long time if there is any implementation that meets the requirements of the judgment. In the end there will be talk of political failure again.

And the critics who say the word about political failure hit the nail on the head, albeit differently than they thought, the first political failure in this case took place in Brussels. The creation of the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) was based on the misconception that one could get a car's complete exhaust emissions under control with a few limit values ​​for a short stage on a roller dynamometer. Far from it, said the automotive industry from the start. But compliance with the NEDC was law and the prerequisite for the approval of a new model.

Author Peter Schwerdtmann

The second policy failure is to allow everyone who adhered to the NEDC to be branded as a fraudster today, and the third policy failure happened when the emission limit values ​​were set. Who can reasonably explain why, for example, nitrogen oxide values ​​at work can be almost 20 times higher than on the street?

The fourth political failure consisted in the fact that it is obviously lawful for an association of around 300 members to be allowed to give themselves a name that has a fundamental, official and national meaning. What is more important than that is the fact that German Environmental Aid (DUH) can use untrammeled and unpunished pressure to put pressure on the media and politics with half-truths and other, mostly dubious methods. Where were the policy makers and their officials?

The fifth policy failure is the uncritical handling of pressure. With a few complaints and a lot of PR, politics has been demoted to DUH henchmen. Do we have to reckon with our media and our politicians watching other populist attacks or even being caught up in the trend again?

The sixth political failure: the protection of its citizens is one of the main tasks of the state. But who can deny that environmental issues such as the combustion engine are sometimes misused for political or industrial reasons. In the case of Volkswagen's diesel fraud, many watched with undisguised glee that the entire German key industry had been crushed and all manufacturers and their managers were exposed as fraudsters. But the worst hit was the diesel car owner. He was expropriated without restraint.

The seventh political failure is easy to predict: once again it wasn't one. But unfortunately hardly anyone seriously expects processes like this to lead to a rethink. Instead, a tougher gait towards industry is currently demanded. Who actually holds the environmental populists accountable? It will be worthwhile to keep the question in mind. In a few weeks, when we can see more clearly where the cause and effect are to be found, it will become clear whether the DUH and others can succeed in driving a new sow through the village and society again with the habit of just indignation in front of it to drive here. The next political failure is coming, isn't it? (ampnet / Sm)

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