East Germans represent 20% of the population but under 5% of the elite in politics, business, science and media, found the sociologists at Bielefeld University. Merkel grew up in the east but her cabinet consists of west Germans. None of the 30 leading companies listed in the German share index have an east German boss. 95% of professors of sociology or political science are originally from the west, even in east German universities such as Leipzig or Dresden. The same is true for the media. The editors-in-chief of big newspapers all hail from the west. Not even Berliner Zeitung or SuperIllu, which are mainly read in the east, have east German editors.
Those managerial elites of a society (and perhaps more so in Germany than some other countries) come from the people in their late forties to mid sixties.
The Wall fell 20 years ago.
So, what we\’ve found out is that people who grew up in a communist dictatorship, took their first steps into, say, the political world under it, do not seem to make very good democratic politicians. Who would have thought it? Those brought up and educated in management under state planning find this free market thing a bit of a puzzle. Sociologists and political scientists who have studied nothing but Marx and Lenin into their 30s aren\’t all that good at teaching those subjects in a democratic and pluralist society. Those who became journalists and started to climb the editorial ladder under a system of strict censorship we then find out tend not to swim all that well in the open seas of a society with free speech and a free media.
Where\’s that wet kipper so I can knock myself down with it?
If we find that same problem among those who are now in their 20s and early 30s, then yes, we might think this a problem. But among those in their 50s now?
Sorry, but the GDR really did fuck you over, you know?