Blog

Basic Rights, Federal Constitutional Court, Human Dignity, Public Law, Social Welfare Law

The Federal Constitutional Court Eviscerates German Welfare Law. Or does it?

In 2005, the German Bundestag revolutionized social welfare law with the so-called Hartz IV(g) reforms. These reforms were pushed through by former Social Democratic German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, and quite possibly ended his political career. The reason? They tightened eligibility criteria, capped the amount of benefits people could receive, and tied the benefits to "cooperation"… Continue reading The Federal Constitutional Court Eviscerates German Welfare Law. Or does it?

Basic Rights, Criminal Law, Freedom of Speech, Right of Personality

‘Fascist’ as a Political Insult

Björn Höcke (g) is the baby-faced reactionary high school history teacher whom every right-thinking German loves to hate. He’s been called every name in the book, and any public appearance by him usually attracts a counter-demonstration. A left-wing German group called the Center for Political Beauty even built a miniature replica of the Holocaust Memorial next… Continue reading ‘Fascist’ as a Political Insult

Abortion, Commentaries, Constitutional Law, Criminal Law, Media Law

Abortion, Libel, Judges and Journalists

In 2018, there was a controversy in Germany about whether doctors who performed abortions could advertise this service. In 2017, a German doctor, Krista Hänel (g), had included a reference to the fact that she provided abortions on her website. She was then prosecuted under §219a of the German Criminal Code, which prohibits "advertising" abortion… Continue reading Abortion, Libel, Judges and Journalists

Bundestag, Constitutional Law, Election Law, Federal Constitutional Court

What to Do About Germany’s Ever-Expanding Parliament?

The lower house of Germany's federal parliament, the Bundestag, now has 709 members, making it the second-largest parliament in the world. This is over 100 more members than the 598 seats Germany's voting laws formally provide for. Why is the Bundestag growing? To understand this, you have to understand German federal election law. Here's a… Continue reading What to Do About Germany’s Ever-Expanding Parliament?

Comparative Law, Self-Promotion, Translation

FAZ Reviews My Translation of Uwe Kischel’s ‘Comparative Law’

I recently had the honor of translating Comparative Law by Uwe Kischel for Oxford University Press. The book received glowing reviews in the German press, and, after being published earlier this year, also in the English-speaking press. The FAZ recently reviewed (g, paywall) my English translation, and had this to say (my translation): The book does… Continue reading FAZ Reviews My Translation of Uwe Kischel’s ‘Comparative Law’