Economy of Germany

The economy of Germany is the biggest economy in Europe, and the 4th largest economy in the world by GDP, powered by Mittelstand, and has the history of rebuilding itself from square one.

The video also discusses Mittelstand businesses which are mostly family-owned private businesses, often of small size to medium range, characterized by a common set of values and operational practices. It is more like a business culture with firms having a unique way of doing things. The firms are mostly run by the ‘owner entrepreneurial families’ who are interested in the sustainability and longevity of the business.

They are highly focused on the idea of doing one thing well first and diversifying internationally later. While the world keeps on praising the ‘serial entrepreneurs’, Mittelstand companies are geared by love and commitment for a product or service. Mittelstand companies are in it for the long run which makes it different from the typical public firms around the world who have to face pressure quarterly or annually to meet the financial targets.

10,000 ways that won’t work

From the Guardian article linked below: “One man that exemplified the science of taking massive actions is Thomas Alva Edison, an American inventor and one of the greatest innovators of all time. During his career, Edison patented over 1000 inventions, including the electric light, the phonograph and the motion-picture camera. 

In the period from 1878 to 1880, after Edison had built a small laboratory in New Jersey, he worked on at least three thousand different theories to develop an efficient incandescent lamp. Many inventors had tried ever before him, but couldn’t produce perfect incandescent lamps. 

By January 1879, Edison had built the first high resistance incandescent electric light, just as he desired, but still the lamp only burned for few hours. To get the perfect ‘filament,’ he went from one experiment to another, tested thousands and thousands of numerous materials to use for the filament, but they did not work with the tools available at that time. 

He tested carbonised filaments of every plant imaginable; he tested no fewer than 6000 vegetable growths. He was never discouraged or inclined to be hopeless of success, despite his several mistakes. He finally discovered that they could use a carbonised bamboo filament that last over 1,200 hours. 

After thousands and thousands of failures, mistakes and errors, Edison finally invented the first practical incandescent light. Though it took him about 10,000 trials to make the light bulb, he gave the world some of the best invention that has heralded the ‘modern’ world. 

When a reporter tried to ridicule his various attempts by asking him how he felt to have failed for 10,000 times, he said something that stunned the whole world: “I have not failed 10,000 times; I have just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” He has an unbreakable record; he not only eventually succeeded, but established a system of electric power generation and distribution to homes. 

Edison also developed the first movie camera and was the first to record sound. He gained worldwide acclaim for his inventions and continued working, even with advancing age and in frail health, amassing a total of 1093 patents, more than any other inventor at that time. His last patent was obtained at age 83 and he died at 84 on October 18, 1931 in New Jersey. 

Three days later, on the night of October 21, as a national tribute proclaimed by President Herbert Hoover, millions of Americans turned out their lights to plunge the country into momentary darkness in order to illustrate how the world was before Edison discovered the light bulb. 

When someone called him a genius, Edison made the famous reply: “Genius is one per cent inspiration and 99 per cent perspiration,” a statement that testify to his virtues of tenacity and persistency even in the plethora of his errors. An overzealous reporter once wrote a headline about Edison: “God said, ‘let there be light’ and there was Thomas Edison.” He was a light to the world, for when Edison died, the lights were put out as a tribute to this legend that set the world aglow with the discovery of the electric bulb light.

Alexis de Tocqueville on American volunteerism

“Americans use associations to give fêtes, to found seminaries, to build inns, to raise churches, to distribute books, to send missionaries to the antipodes; in this manner they create hospitals, prisons, schools. Finally, if it is a question of bringing to light a truth or developing a sentiment with the support of a great example, they associate.”

Thirty Years War

This episode of Ten Minute History (like a documentary, only shorter) covers the outbreak of the Bohemian Revolt which was what would eventually spiral out of control into the Thirty Years’ War.

The revolt was crushed fairly quickly but sparked intervention by Denmark, who didn’t do too well, and later Sweden who did very well. Both of these were aided by France who decided to get directly involved in 1635.

By 1648 the Holy Roman Empire lay in ruins, with Austria and Spain struggling to pay for the war and rebuild the Habsburg Empire. This war saw the rise of Sweden and France but most importantly saw the foundations of modern diplomacy built.

How the Thirty Years war affected Germany

The Thirty Years War (1618-1648) was a brutal conflict that saw most major European powers use Germany as a battleground to sort out their assorted dynastic, religious, economic and territorial issues. The toll this took on the country was massive, and reverberated for long after; let’s take a look at some of the damage it did.

The Thirty Years War has earned a reputation for being a particularly nasty conflict: unlike most wars of the day, and arguably no wars until the 20th century, it saw massive civilian casualties, with parts of Germany losing more than half of their population. It’s estimated that of a German population of about 20 million in 1600, by 1650 only about 13 million were alive.

Bavaria: tradition in danger

Günther Hochhäuser is a passionate marksman who fights to maintain the traditions of his homeland, Upper Bavaria. The Christian Social Union, who has been in power here for decades, could get a drubbing in upcoming elections — to Hochhäuser’s dismay.

Marksmen’s clubs stand for everything Bavaria is famous for: folk costumes, cultural lore and tradition. Their chairmen include illustrious public figures, such as former Pope Benedict and Prince Max, Duke in Bavaria.

Marksman Günther Hochhäuser says “We are a pillar of strength.” But that pillar looks to be on increasingly shaky ground. Bavaria and even the seemingly timeless Inn-Chiemgau shooting club are being overtaken by the tides of change. Until recently, voting for the conservative CSU party was a given.

But recent polls say that the CSU will suffer big losses in the upcoming state elections. Many Bavarians are angry that German interior minister Horst Seehofer, a member of the CSU, recently came close to bringing down the country’s governing coalition. Axel Rowohlt reports.


Bavarians (Bavarian: Boarn, Standard German: Baiern) are an ethnographic group of Germans of the Bavaria region, a state within Germany. The group’s dialect or speech is known as the Bavarian language, native to Altbayern (“Old Bavaria”), roughly the territory of the Electorate of Bavaria in the 17th century.

Like the neighboring Austrians, Bavarians are traditionally Catholic. In much of Altbayern, membership in the Catholic Church remains above 70%, and the center-right Christian Social Union in Bavaria (successor of the Bavarian People’s Party of 1919–1933) has traditionally been the strongest party in the Landtag, and also the party of all Ministers-President of Bavaria since 1946, with the single exception of Wilhelm Hoegner, 1954–1957.

Event organizers despair of the German small state

The jungle of corona measures meant that tours had to be canceled. Here federalism shows its deterrent face.

There was great hope that everything would change with the vaccinations against the corona virus, that cultural life could start again, that normality would return and that everyday corona life would become a case for the history books. But Germany is still a long way from that.

The theaters are playing again, the local cultural actors can also be seen again and get their performances, but the nationwide event business is not really getting off the ground. Just recently, Die Ärzte, Peter Maffay and Nena canceled their planned tours almost simultaneously: One of the reasons for this was the different corona rules in the federal states.