Easter message from the virus experts – Handelsblatt Morning Briefing

Easter Sunday isn’t until April 17th, so there’s plenty of time. I mention this because the Christian festival apparently plays a special role in the fight against corona. The situation is such that first comes the suffering, death and resurrection of Christ – and then suffering and farewell to the virus. Virologist Christian Drosten does not expect easing until after Easter. The transmissions are currently being fed from school operations, “the Easter holidays will put a stop to it at the latest,” said Drosten. And after that it will be warmer and the incidence “probably will not pick up as much speed”.

Baden-Württemberg’s Prime Minister Winfried Kretschmann currently sees even talking about openings before Easter as completely absurd. “We’re not starting a debate about exit strategies – that would be completely inappropriate and send the completely wrong signal,” the Greens politician raged. This will not be thwarted by “unfounded exit debates”. Wilhelm Busch knew: “Easter every year is quite difficult for the rabbit.”

Apparently daring more progress also means daring more finances. How should one interpret it differently when the individual federal ministries have deposited additional requests for almost 400 billion euros by 2026 in the budget negotiations? Treasurer Christian Lindner noted that much. For 2022 alone, the entertainment show “Wünsch Dir Was!” accumulated around 70 billion more than the financial planning allowed.

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Representatives of all three coalition parties with strict demands for spending stand out quite traffic light-like: Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD), Economics Minister Robert Habeck (Greens) and Volker Wissing (FDP). The liberal Lindner had called for a “solid budgetary policy” in a kind of Christmas letter – and advised not to announce anything if it is still unclear where the necessary money will come from. That is “not expedient because we are raising expectations that may prove to be unfulfillable,” said the FDP leader. It was of little use. And so the “friendly hawk” that Lindner recently presented himself as in Brussels can become an unfriendly hawk.

donald trump has furiously earned the title “The Devourer”.. The former US President, who is said to have a choleric tendency when unsuccessful, is said to have personally torn up documents in the White House. Glued together in a makeshift manner, they ended up in the US parliamentary investigative committee for the storming of the Capitol in January 2021. The National Archives have now revealed that Trump had a habit of dealing with documents in this way.

Such quirks don’t bother when collecting money. Trump’s team has already raised $122 million from generous donors for the campaign before the congressional elections in November, with the Save America fundraising committee being the most diligent. All that money is supposed to go to Republican candidates who have to have one characteristic: to support a 75-year-old who wants to be president again. The rest of the world shivers and would like to open their own “Save America” ​​committee.

The “basic effect” applies to “normal companies”. The lower the turnover zone, the greater the potential for leaps in growth. At Alphabet with its ABC protégé Google, however, the “network effect” applies: The larger the group of users, the more traffic and more advertising, they say. And so it is that the Californian internet giant reported sales of 257.6 billion dollars for 2021 yesterday – a good 40 percent more than in the previous year.

That exceeded the expectations of stockbrokers. Annual earnings per share were $108.6. If you google the term “monopoly profit”, “Wikibrief” returns: “In business, a monopoly is a company that lacks viable competition.” Great, say investors, and chase the stock in US after-hours trading on the Tech stock up 6.80 percent to $2,945.

ZF Friedrichshafen was once considered a sedentary group from Lake Constance. But now the second-largest auto parts supplier in Germany is presenting itself as a miracle of movement – ​​and is attacking market leader Bosch. With a turnover of around ten billion euros, they are still behind the Stuttgarters, who have a total turnover of 42.1 billion euros. With offers for autonomous driving in commercial vehicles, the gap should shrink further. The takeover of US brake manufacturer Wabco has sparked fantasies. “Now we have the horsepower on the road and we just have to accelerate,” says ZF Board Member Wilhelm Rehm. Under his leadership, the truck activities of ZF and Wabco will be combined in Friedrichshafen.

A pleasingly clear word on the EU climate rules comes from the banking world. Thomas Jorberg, head of the “sustainability bank” GLS, vigorously opposes the fact that Brussels defines nuclear and gas power plants as “green” energies in its “taxonomy” – so that environmentally concerned funds can invest in them. Jorberg says: “The taxonomy misses the point and in its current form is greenwashing, ineffective and competition-distorting.”

He criticizes that classic medium-sized companies are not covered at all by the EU climate rules. For the time being, the taxonomy only applies to capital market companies with more than 500 employees. The US actress Jane Fonda has a clear view: “We deal with this world as if we had a second one in the trunk.”

Star quarterback Tom Brady

Mathias Döpfner is not resigning as head of the Federal Association of Digital Publishers and Newspaper Publishers (BDZV), although he had privately denounced almost all journalists in Corona reporting as “propaganda assistants”. Boris Johnson is not resigning as British Prime Minister, although he was having parties at the seat of government in the middle of the lockdown. Lothar Wieler is also not resigning as head of the Robert Koch Institute, although he seems to be aiming for a first-class expulsion with continued disloyalty to the new government.

Only one gets it right and actually retires after a 22-year career – Tom Brady, American football superstar with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. At the age of 44, the man came to the realization that the moment had come “to focus my time and energy on other things.” It works.

And then there is the food giant Nestlé, which continues to offend people with its water-growth fantasies. The Swiss company is now stopping the sale of Vittel mineral water in Germany. A spokesman speaks in the “Lebensmittel-Zeitung” of “premiumization efforts” at Nestlé. The focus will now be on the brands “San Pellegrino” and “Acqua Panna”. The group’s environmental sins are apparently having an impact, and “Vittel” is weakening.

Nestlé has been criticized for selling water from wells in the small French town of Vittel since the early 1990s. As a result, the groundwater level is apparently dropping by 30 centimeters every year. The manager of the Nestlé factory there confirms that he is pumping out more water “than can naturally regenerate, which has caused the water table to fall steadily every year for the past thirty years.”

We introduce the implacable, humorous Erich Kästner at this point: “Earth is an educated planet with a great deal of water flushing.”

I wish you a good day.

It greets you cordially


Hans Jürgen Jakobs

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