January 1, 2018 – Goodness gracious: The Potsdam City Library's stock allegedly includes “about 20 controversial books – with neo-right ideology and conspiracy theories. They're called Finis Germania, Die Asyl-Industrie (The Asylum Industry) and Kontrollverlust (Loss of Control).”
In view of the labelling, ‘controversial’ authors Udo Ulfkotte (former editor of the ‘Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung’) and Rolf-Peter Sieferle (tenured professor of history) will likely be turning in their graves; Thorsten Schulte, a more or less prominent member of the (mainstream, right of center) CDU and honest entrepreneur, will be at rolling his eyes at the very least.
However, the ‘Potsdamer Neueste Nachrichten’ (PNN) newspaper is on full alert. PNN editor Henri Kramer makes these old-fashioned remarks:
“There are too many of these publications. In fact, it is perfectly reasonable to argue that at a time when every absurd conspiracy theory and right-wing agitation of any kind counts as a normal expression of opinion on the Internet, such content does not also have to be made available in public libraries, paid for by taxpayers' money.”
If I go to the PNN's website, I receive, immediately and prominently, a “free of charge invitation” to the military computer game ‘Call of War.’ If I go to the Potsdam City Library's web page, I find in their catalog an incredible amount of conspiracy theory books written by free floating propagandists.
A short visit: Volker Weiss's ‘Die autoritäre Revolte’ (‘The Authoritarian Revolt’), leftist agitation and fear mongering of the finest: available! Five books by the controversial left-wing radical author Andrea Röpke: available! Mayakovsky's Bolshevik revolutionary lyricism, Lenin's effusions: available! With taxpayers' money! etc., etc.
February 13 – Whenever we are asked what our ‘hobbies’ are, my husband and I exchange looks. My goodness, should grown-up people have ‘hobbies?’
Before I offend people with a hobby, I confess that I have actually saved one from my childhood: crossword puzzles and even more intricate things to be solved on paper. (Yes, I even take part in entry competitions and have already won three prizes.)
On vacation I always treat myself to a large stack. A booklet is still on the table. The children do a little scribbling around in the very banal crossword puzzles I didn't fill out. One clue is ‘ohne Lug’ (‘without lies’), the correct answer would be ‘wahr’ (‘true’). The little girls can't figure it out.
Me: “Come on, this is easy: when someone talks without lying, then what he is saying is ...?” Silence, pondering.
I continue: “What someone says is not twisted or dishonest, but ...?” The smallest, looking up: “... right-wing?” Brutally unambiguous kids.
Extracts from the originals (here (01/Jan/2018) and here (13/Feb/2018) at sezession.de) translated and republished with permission from Ellen Kositza.