The coalition CDU/CSU – SPD in a dilemma over the role of the state in the Soziale Marktwirtschaft doctrine
The article deals with significant socio-economical issues, state interventionism and ideological differences between the two ruling parties in Germany, namely the CDU and SPD. In the first part of the essay the nature of the Soziale Marktwirtschaft doctrine will be defined with the emphasis on the explanation of the controversial and often used by the earlier mentioned parties term ‘social’. The issues of particular interest of this article, which will be presented and which cause much tensions between the SPD and CDU/CSU are those considering minimal wages for the employees, reliefs for the unemployed and social testimonies, which indicate that the nature of state interventionism and the problems evolving around the idea of efficient functioning of the ‘welfare state’ seem to be paramount in modern German political economy. First of all, many scholars try to answer two very important questions: Can the term ‘welfare state’ be still applicable to Germany in which we can see several significant social reforms during the last few decades? And to what extent will the German society assume responsibility for its own actions and accept the politics of the ruling governments?