Retail in Grafing – “This is just an emergency solution” – Ebersberg

Most retail stores in the Ebersberg district have to remain closed due to the pandemic at least until mid-February. The Grafinger shoe store Koppitz is also one of those affected. So Senior Walter Koppitz does one lap in the car every day, or more accurately: with a Piaggio Ape 50 with a 50 cc two-stroke engine under the windshield.

SZ: To stay in the picture of a master shoemaker: How’s it going?

Walter Koppitz: At the moment I don’t find the play on words funny anymore. Personally, I’m fine – but the rest annoys me a lot: We are the fourth generation to run two shoe stores in Grafing. They are both about 200 square meters. But I’m not even allowed to let in a single customer at the moment. Even if it were two or three people: Nobody is crowded on this large area!

It is said that necessity makes inventive

You mean our home service? Yes, you can say that. Once a day I sit in the Piaggio Ape 50 and deliver or pick up shoes.

Please tell us.

For example, if someone calls us and wants a new shoe, we assume: a shoe that is good for a bit of slush, but does not have to be put in the closet in the spring either. I would probably ask the customer a few more questions. What color should it be? Should the shoe be rather simple or something special? Foot shape and foot width are also always important. And of course I need to know the size. Then I choose between three and seven pairs, put them in the trunk and take them with me on the next tour. I put the shoes in front of the customer’s door, he can look at them and try them on in peace. The next day he just puts the couples he doesn’t like back in front of the door for me. On the next tour, I’ll drive by and pick up the boxes again. Or, if he doesn’t like any, all of them. Of course, everything is non-binding. Of course, this also applies to the call-and-collect principle: someone calls and then picks up their shoes at my door.

You may have invented a new business model.

Absolutely no way! Such a short phone call is no substitute for advice in a business. This is just an emergency solution. I don’t even want to think about profitability. The service only compensates for a fraction of the turnover. Of course we hope that word gets around. But none of this is an option for the custom-made products that we produce here in the workshop. For older customers, however, we will keep the delivery service in the future.

What kind of people are you driving the shoes past?

Completely normal district citizens, for whom I am honestly grateful, not only in view of the current situation. Because they are people who care about local retail. Who have an awareness that the city center and the marketplace will die out if this continues with online orders. And who are aware that you will never get the service on the Internet that is a matter of course in retail. But the closed shop is unfortunately only one problem.

And the other?

That has to do with the workshop. Usually it is busy. One has to have his brogue shoes resole, another maybe recondition a shoe. But when events are no longer allowed up or down the country, the need for a nice shoe is rather low.


EU puts pressure on vaccine deliveries – politics

After a second pharmaceutical company, Astra Zeneca, announced problems with vaccine delivery, the EU wants to increase pressure on manufacturers to ensure punctual delivery. “We expect that the contracts that the pharmaceutical industry has signed will be kept,” said Council President Charles Michel on Sunday. Above all, one must be clear about the reason for the delay. If necessary, the EU will use legal means, he said. The EU Commission also says that the legal options are being examined. Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides wanted to remind Astra Zeneca by letter on Sunday that the company had contractually agreed to start production before the vaccine was released.

Astra Zeneca announced on Friday that it would initially deliver fewer corona vaccines in the EU than planned. The reason is lower production at one location in the EU supply chain. Astra Zeneca’s vaccine is not yet approved in the EU, but it is expected to be released next Friday. The Commission secured 400 million doses of vaccine from Astra Zeneca on behalf of the Member States in August. According to unconfirmed reports, the delivery volume is reduced by about 60 percent.

Before Astra Zeneca, the German-American manufacturer Biontech-Pfizer had already announced delivery problems. Italy’s Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte criticized the companies heavily. “These slowdowns in deliveries are serious breaches of contract that are causing enormous damage in Italy and other European countries,” he wrote on Facebook on Saturday. He also announced legal action. Since the purchase contracts with the companies are based on the EU quotas, but ultimately concluded by the capitals themselves, they can also take action against the suppliers themselves.

According to Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn (CDU), Germany is also affected by the reduced delivery volume. “If the Astra Zeneca vaccine is approved at the end of January, we expect at least three million vaccine doses for Germany as early as February,” said Spahn Picture on sunday. However, he admitted that this was less than expected. Spahn did not comment on any legal action taken against the company.

The reduced deliveries are causing delays in vaccination plans in the federal states. There are no new first vaccinations in North Rhine-Westphalia this week. In Bavaria, fixed vaccination appointments were canceled at short notice in individual districts and postponed by up to two months.

As Spahn further announced, the federal government is now also relying on drugs that can cause a milder course of the Covid infection. The Ministry of Health bought 200,000 cans of the corresponding preparations for 400 million euros. According to the ministry, these are contingents of two different drugs that contain antibodies. “According to the available studies, the medication could possibly help to limit the amount of virus in the body and thus have a positive influence on the course of the disease,” said a ministry spokeswoman. Former US President Donald Trump is said to have been treated with such a preparation when he contracted the corona virus.


Hertha BSC: Tabula rasa in the capital – sport

At the end of the 19th century, when today’s Bundesliga club Hertha BSC had just been founded, the writer Mark Twain traveled to England from the USA. Twain fell ill in such a way that his obituary was already published in his homeland, which Twain commented with his own sense of humor: The news of his death was “greatly exaggerated”, he is supposed to have said. Which brings us to Bruno Labbadia. Labbadia is not a writer, but a football coach, and he is not sick, but is in excellent health. But on Saturday he had his very own Twain moment.

It was around 8.30 p.m., the temperatures around the freezing point in the Olympic Stadium must have crept into his body long ago, so he was supposed to comment on the game that had just ended on Sky on the sidelines, according to the custom and TV contract. Hertha BSC lost 1: 4 (1: 2), and the fact that this game had already been dubbed the “final” for Labbadia (and manager Michael Preetz) was one thing. The other was that the coach received a fresh message from the live and in color picture-The newspaper was rubbed under the frozen nose: “Labbadia decision made” was to be read, and that in turn meant that he was asked, so to speak, to comment on his own death on television. Question: “What does that do to you?” Labbadia’s anger was unmistakable.

But he got the performance to an end with admirable demeanor and dignity. Although he must have suspected various things – for example: that the report was correct and it would only be a matter of time before it was confirmed. That was the case on Sunday lunchtime after Labbadia said goodbye to his team that morning. A little less predictable: Manager Michael Preetz also has to leave after almost 25 years in the club. “We want a fresh start,” said Hertha’s new strong man, CEO Carsten Schmidt, who has been in office for 55 days and would have liked to have had more time to reposition the club.

The successor to Preetz has only been clarified for the time being. Former national player Arne Friedrich, who was installed as “Performance Manager” by ex-trainer Jürgen Klinsmann over a year ago, will succeed him in the rank of sports director. When asked about the coach, Schmidt said that they had a plan that they would implement, if possible, on Monday. The favorites for an interim solution are: Pal Dardai and Andreas “Zecke” Neuendorf, both former Hertha professionals who are currently coaches for subordinate teams in the club. Schmidt publicly asked Labbadia for forgiveness: the indiscretion to the picturenewspaper have nothing in common with the style he wanted to see, that was “a bad performance” by Hertha.

The external presentation on Saturday thus fit in quite seamlessly with a series of football appearances by Hertha. The 1: 4 against Werder means, among other things, that Hertha can only show 17 points from 18 games this season; in the first round of the DFB Cup they also retired from second division promoted Braunschweig. Thus, the eighth coaching engagement of Labbadia since 2003 became one of the thorns of his career.

Labbadia’s commitment was also the opportunity for him to distinguish himself as a development trainer

Labbadia started in Berlin in April 2020 to look after a squad that was already playing below its potential, i.e. against relegation. For him, the commitment was also the chance to put an end to his reputation as a firefighter and to distinguish himself as a development trainer. At his penultimate coaching station, in Wolfsburg, it looked like he could do it – but he left VfL due to differences with manager Jörg Schmadtke. Now, nine months after starting in Berlin, Labbadia is getting a disgruntled certificate: Under his leadership, Hertha saved itself confidently in the preseason – but the freestyle failed, although the squad has had players worth more than 100 million euros since the beginning of 2020 was reinforced.

Across the seasons, Hertha’s average point under Labbadia was 1.07 per game. No team he has ever coached has been worse, not even Hamburger SV. On Saturday he himself spoke of the fact that he “no longer had any arguments” – after a game that looked like a joke on paper.

According to the statistics, Hertha was superior to the Bremen team in all aspects that are empirically recorded. Only: The game was another example of how relative such values ​​can be. Although Werder fired fewer shots on goal, kicked fewer corners, played fewer passes and had a lower pass rate than Hertha, the victory was high – and understandable. And not just because of the effectiveness that Werder displayed – in the goals with a penalty kick from Davie Selke, a header from Ömer Toprak, a technically demanding finish from Leonardo Bittencourt and a howitzer-like 4-1 from Joshua Sargent, Hertha only a Cordoba header in stoppage time could oppose the first half. But Werder was also the team with the more solid ideas, the clearer structure, the greater selflessness and discipline.

“In this morning’s analysis, too, Bruno Labbadia and I are a little bit desperate that we have a very good team individually, but have not managed to get an axis or a team performance on the pitch where all three parts of the team are not individually, but perform well together, “said Schmidt on Sunday. The consequence is the table status, for which there was a booth sermon full of realism: He had made an appeal to the team and “made it clear what phase we are in: in the relegation battle.” Nobody can contradict that.


Corona and Education – Stream according to the timetable – Ebersberg

In the morning the alarm clock rings again. Not quite as early as the normal school rhythm, but still. It is not far from bed to an English lesson, it is enough to open your eyes 20 minutes before. Then the teacher sits on the other end of the line and waits for the screen to fill with the tiles and faces of his students. Anyone who overslept is registered and everything goes well, the phone rings once a week and a teacher asks how his protégés are doing.

Something like that in the second lockdown, which, extended at least until February 14, leaves most of the children and young people in distance learning, despite all demands from parents and students. How things will continue in Bavaria is not yet clear, a return of the final and elementary school classes to an alternate teaching model is one of the considerations. One decision, however, no longer seems to be in question: the carnival holidays are canceled. For school principals, teachers and students no motivating prospect, and the criticism of Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder going it alone is palpable everywhere: Nobody works less in distance learning than at normal times, argue the headmasters in the district, especially since the situation in the second lockdown does not match the im Spring compares, and the distance teaching works largely well. Apart from the collapse of the online systems, including the Mebis learning platform, right after the Christmas break.

That was more than annoying, says the director of the Grafingen Max-Mannheimer-Gymnasium, Nicole Storz, especially since “one has actually made good provision for the distance teaching”. Grafing is based on three pillars, on Mebis, on video conferences on “Teams for education” as well as on the student portal and the Jitsi Meet software. In order to enable stable streaming – Grafing, as a relatively old school, has to struggle with a bad network – the company, which also hosts the high school’s web page, had two additional servers set up, all on their own initiative.

By means of a student survey, the grammar school has now also obtained the opinion of its protégés and, apart from the criticism of three different communication channels, they seem to be largely satisfied. The students were asked separately for lower, middle and upper grades how many video conferences they would like, whether they rate the study load as rather high or low, and whether they felt they could contact their teachers if necessary. Compared to face-to-face lessons, they had more to do than less, answered almost all high school students, in the upper school even significantly more. And as far as continuous teaching via video conference is concerned: Most of them refused, between two and four hours a day would be just fine.

The Poinger Anni-Pickert elementary and middle school, however, goes one step further in terms of online intensity, with video lessons based on the timetable. The municipality of Poing financed access to the Microsoft conference program MS Teams. Everything in close cooperation with the data protection officer of the district. The program, explains headmistress Eva Guerin, provides the teachers with tools that enable them to work almost like in analog lessons. “You can even have group work done and everyone is back with the push of a button.” She made a conscious decision against the “Teams for education” learning platform sponsored by the Ministry of Culture, according to Guerin, because the license for it was due to expire on December 31st. Now it has been extended until April, but how it will continue after that is unclear. “I wanted something that we could use longer.”

That doesn’t mean that everything in Poing is digital. “In the first grade the children are learning to write,” that is only possible in paper form. “Materials are exchanged via boxes that the teachers leave in front of the school and to which the pupils have access. Many freshly written letters thus switch between pupils and Teachers back and forth without them meeting.

All schools experienced in the first lockdown that the biggest problem with not encountering in distance learning is and drew their conclusions from this, including the Vaterstetten secondary school. Headmaster Stefan Gasior reports: “We have attendance checks every day.” The teachers could now deal better with the possibilities in distance teaching, “they now know whether they should make a video conference or post material”. However, each class has contact with a teacher at least once per school day, and on some days twice. This is only possible because of the school’s good infrastructure and a stable WiFi network. “We can stream from every classroom,” which is also possible because there is a PC and a document camera everywhere.

“What we haven’t had is a complete alternation when we have to stream from all 42 classes at the same time.” The idea of ​​a so-called hybrid model, as it could take effect from February 14th, is a burden for those responsible at all types of schools, even if, as school authority director Sigrid Binder says, it has now become a matter of course for them to have to adjust to changed scenarios. The education authority tries to help the elementary and middle schools at least with additional staff – student teachers with the first state examination – which is urgently needed to keep the emergency operation going.

Gymnasiums and secondary schools have to cope differently. “Sure, we can come up with something again in hybrid lessons”, says the Grafingen director Storz, but she does not yet know how to let half of the high school students teach on-site and the other half at home, given the school’s poor network connection. If only the high school graduates return to school, it will be difficult. “I always have six courses in parallel, so I have to stream twelve times, that’s not possible.”


On the wrong side – sport

The general conditions were excellent: SpVgg Unterhaching played their 400th third division game against FSV Zwickau on Saturday, for defensive man Robert Müller it was the 332nd match in this division, which made him catch up with the previous record player Tim Danneberg. With a 0-0 win against Türkgücü, the Hachinger team ended their latest series of defeats during the week – and then captain Markus Schwabl was also able to look forward to a special award: the trade magazine Kicker named him the best full-back in the league in his semi-annual “Ranking list of German football”. The festive mood did not last long: Haching lost 1: 2 (1: 1) and did not slip to a relegation place because competitor Magdeburg in Halle literally lost 0: 1 with a goal in the last second.

Of course, it won’t be too long before the red and blue slip under the line if they don’t turn the trend around soon. Against Zwickau, the inexperienced team showed themselves – on average, the players were four years younger than the guests – vulnerable behind and not assertive enough on the offensive. Accordingly, coach Arie van Lent’s criticism was clear: “I’m not really interested in whether there is a blockade,” he said immediately after the game Magenta Sports. It would be more important “to get passes to the man, to use goal chances. Sometimes it’s just a run,” said the coach. “We miss all of that, with us everything is a little too little or not well thought-out. And at the back we don’t defend consistently enough.”

Like in the fourth minute against Zwickau: Leon Jensen put forward for Ronny König, whose pass Dustin Willms shoveled past goalkeeper Nico Mantl into the goal from eleven meters – the hosts were already behind again. And that, although in front of the two central defenders Christoph Greger and Felix Göttlicher long-running Robert Müller should help as additional protection to prevent goals against. “We always harm ourselves, which is why we conceded an early goal again this time,” said van Lent.

“We have been fighting for relegation for weeks. If you haven’t understood that, you can get your passport”: Markus Schwabl, right, captain of SpVgg Unterhaching.

(Photo: Claus Schunk)

His team came into the game better afterwards. Felix Schröter, who was in the forefront of the ailing Hachingen top scorer Patrick Hasenhüttl (five goals of the season), shot a volley after Schwabl’s cross just wide (17th) and bounced off defender Davy Frick three minutes later. The 19-year-old left-back Jannis Turtschan, who was once again preferred to Max Dombrowka, failed with a remarkable finish from 16 meters to Zwickau’s keeper Johannes Brinkies (27th). Paul Grauschopf finally refused the qualification despite a clear path from a distance, ultimately only a weak shot from Felix Schröter came out (37th). The equalizer was in the air, but it could also have set the 0: 2, for example when Greger served FSV striker König with a failed back pass, who was completely surprised by this blackout (21st).

The best Hachinger attack in weeks brings the interim compensation

And so the best Hachinger attack for weeks brought the 1: 1 deserved at that time: Grauschopf played the ball at the center line with the hoe on Moritz Heinrich, who marched towards the sixteenth and put through for Lucas Hufnagel; that chip hit the goalkeeper in the right corner (40th).

So the cards were reshuffled before the second half – and then Zwickau’s coach Joe Enochs pulled an ace up his sleeve: He switched his cover from three to four and let his players attack earlier. With the effect that Haching couldn’t get through. On the contrary, the guests from Saxony now had the much more dangerous scenes. Marco Schikora headed just wide of the goal after a free-kick cross (52.). A good ten minutes later, the 18-year-old SpVgg defender Göttlicher grabbed a cross from Jensen from the center, but directly in front of the feet of Zwickau’s offensive man Morris Schröter, who did not hesitate and scored to 2-1. “We always decide the games ourselves, but unfortunately on the wrong side,” commented van Lent.

In the final phase there is a state of siege, but the SpVgg no longer has a real chance to score

The coach now risked everything, throwing Luca Marseiler and Dominik Stroh-Engel into the fray. But despite the state of siege in the final phase, there was no longer a single mandatory option. “That was more of a cramp, we were hoping for one last chance, but we didn’t succeed in the lucky punch,” said the coach.

Only the number of goals scored (with equal points and the same goal difference) keeps Haching above the relegation ranks. Therefore, the game on Wednesday at the bottom of the table VfB Lübeck is of enormous importance. After the bankruptcy against Zwickau, captain Markus Schwabl summed it up: “We have been fighting for relegation for weeks.” Those who have not yet understood this can “get their passport” upstairs in the office.


Bundesliga: Bayern breaks Schalke’s brave resistance – sport

On Sunday morning the Kicker a message that Schalkeers all over the world heard with interest. Your club is planning to close a gap at the beginning of the second half of the season that has been a blatant hole since the beginning of the first half of the season. From VfL Wolfsburg, a real right-back is to be won in the form of the Brazilian William.

Basically a sensible transaction, but with two restrictions: According to the table, this transfer seems like throwing a lifebuoy to a drowned person. And in the game against FC Bayern, the 25-year-old specialist could not yet take up the urgently needed service because there are a few more calls to be made before the loan deal. On the other hand, it can be doubted whether the use of the seasonal worker William would have had the influence to stop Bayern on the way to their next success.

As expected, the Munich team took the points with a 4-0 win, but the clear result suggests a course that did not exist. Goals three and four fell shortly before the end, until then the matter was by no means as clear as you would imagine at the meeting between the – now even more superior – leaders and the – now even more distant – bottom of the table. Bayern were better, but Schalke not only kept up bravely.

While FC Bayern advanced with almost a full force (only Corentin Tolisso was missing) and formed its parade team, Schalke presented an incomplete squad for the top game of the past. The returnees Sead Kolasinac and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar were supposed to cure their muscle problems in order to be able to take part in the supposedly more promising next game in Bremen, Salif Sané was also spared.

“Sometimes we play too much risk, sometimes too slowly,” complained coach Hansi Flick

As is the case with games that seem decided beforehand, the outsider surprised the favorite with an astonishingly motivated appearance. Bayern coach Hansi Flick acknowledged that afterwards: Yes, they “scored four goals,” he said, “but I’ve also seen that we can do one thing or the other better with possession. We sometimes play too much risk, sometimes too slow. On the defensive, we allowed one or the other. “

It was Schalke’s Timo Becker, to whom his coach Christian Gross had entrusted the right defensive side, who dared the first shot on goal after a minute. Manuel Neuer took the ball with ease. The next quarter of an hour gave an impression of the class difference between the two teams, but the game remained open in both directions. Schalke should have made it 1-0, but Mark Uth did not know how to use Bastian Oczipka’s good cross, although he had the best access to the header – Neuer was able to fend off (11th minute).

Gradually, however, the superiority of the Munich field resulted in a more or less permanent presence in front of the opposing goal. Leroy Sané and Serge Gnabry skilfully slalomed like Rosi Mittermaier in the penalty area, but either found no gap or missed the target. Ralf Fährmann defused a cleverly executed free kick by Robert Lewandowski.

The Schalke team were increasingly in trouble, but defended themselves skillfully and also knew what to do with the ball, Benito Raman gave Neuer a little work on a counterattack (25th). The Bayern approached the lead bit by bit, and when Thomas Müller cheered the 1-0 in the 35th minute, everyone’s expectations were met. The Schalke had to be annoyed anyway. Joshua Kimmich let them cross from the half-field undisturbed, Becker left Müller unguarded.

In the last few minutes, Schalke will be punished

The Schalke team did not give up their resistance in the second half either. The home side seemed to be getting around that it is not impossible to get chances against Bayern. Ozan Kabak missed the opportunity to equalize with a header. The championship leader responded in his own way: Lewandowski picked up a pass from Kimmich as elegantly as it was effective, only to pull past Kabak and Fährmann and do his usual daily work. The 2-0 meant his 23rd goal of the season, but still not the decision of this surprisingly lively game.

Schalke tried hard to get the next goal and had a number of opportunities. The Blues tried an astonishing twelve shots on goal against Manuel Neuer, who was flying back and forth – the result of a committed performance and once again a surprisingly porous Munich cover. The “progress” that Christian Gross wanted to have recognized in the game actually existed. “We did some things very well,” he said. “But some of them are of course very bad” – from which the late goals by Müller to 3-0 and David Alaba to 4-0 (with Fährmann’s help) resulted.

“Of course I wish Schalke to stay in the league and I keep my fingers crossed,” said former Schalke and today’s Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer later at Sky. The thumbs of a world goalkeeper with all due respect, but that alone will certainly not be enough.


Bundesliga – Bayern does the compulsory job on Schalke – Sport

Record champions Bayern Munich seized the opportunity and set themselves apart from their pursuers in the title race. After the slips of the competition for RB Leipzig, the triple winner won 4-0 (1-0) at bottom of the table Schalke 04 and increased the lead to seven points.

For Royal Blue, the situation in the fight against the fourth relegation in the club’s history after the tenth consecutive competitive game defeat against Bayern is becoming increasingly hopeless. Exactly a year ago, when the rapid crash began, the gap to Munich was three points – now the two clubs separate 35 points.

In the duel between the goal factory and the league’s shooting gallery, the favorite was sloppy about his chances for a long time. Thomas Müller headed the league leaders, who won the first leg 8-0, in the lead (33rd). Robert Lewandowski made the decision with his 23rd goal of the season, his 21st in the 24th game against Schalke (54th). Müller (88th) and David Alaba (90th) made the final score. The strong Joshua Kimmich prepared the first three goals.

The Gelsenkircheners, again without their ailing returnee Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, had a surprising number of opportunities. But in the end there was the 13th defeat of the season. They have been without a win against the series champions for 24 competitive games.

In addition to Huntelaar (calf problems), the hosts were also missing the second returnee: left-back Sead Kolasinac had to watch because of thigh problems. Bayern coach Hansi Flick offered three ex-Schalke players: In addition to goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and midfielder Leon Goretzka, winger Leroy Sane was back in the starting line-up – for the first time since the cup at the second division Holstein Kiel one and a half weeks ago. The same was true for national player Niklas Süle.

The defender, who convinced as a right-back, initiated the first big chance for Munich, Lewandowski put the header just over the bar (7th). Amazing: Not only the record champions were looking for the quick way to the goal, also the bottom of the table. Suat Serdar (8th) and Mark Uth (11th) only narrowly failed with their heads in promising situations.

After around 20 minutes Bayern became more dominant, Schalke keeper Ralf Fährmann had to fend off a double chance from Lewandowski and Serge Gnabry with strong reflexes (23rd). However, the Munich team – much to the displeasure of their coach – left Schalke plenty of space for counterattacks. The leadership of the guests by Müller’s header after the strong Kimmich cross was still logical – it was Bayern’s 13th shot on goal.

Even after the break, Munich remained dominant, but again and again allowed Schalke high-profile chances to score – like for Matija Nastasic, who missed the goal by just inches with a header (52nd). Lewandowski scored ice cold on the other side.


Vaterstetten – Schmorbrand in the cellar – Ebersberg



Scorch in the cellar

A family of three from Vaterstetten was lucky in the misfortune: On Friday around 6 p.m., the residents of a house in Brunnenstrasse became aware of the smell of smoke coming from the cellar. When the three of them wanted to look there, they were already seeing clear smoke – whereupon they left the house and called the fire department. The approximately 25-strong fire brigade crew found a scorched electronic device in the basement and were able to extinguish it. Nobody got hurt. The residential property was then ventilated, but was no longer habitable. According to the police, the property damage is suspected in the five-digit range.

© SZ vom 25.01.2021 / sz

To the SZ homepage

Read more on the subject


SZ column “Best of Things”: A US prison collects money for a student – Panorama

Reading groups are great, but aren’t necessarily expected to improve the lives of their participants from the ground up. But they do if they go like they did at the Palma School in Salinas, California. The students there organize their reading group together with inmates from Soledad State Prison. Jason Bryant was among them.

In 1999, the then 20-year-old was sentenced to 26 years in prison for armed robbery resulting in death. He told the television station CBS about the reading group with the Palma School that it was “incredibly refreshing” that the students saw the prisoners “for who we are: people”.

Bryant believes “that a lot of people who have made very bad choices in their lives want to be part of something good”. And something very positive was the decision of the prisoners to raise money for the student Sy Newson Green for four years because his family could not afford the school fees of 12,900 US dollars a year: Sy Newson’s father needed a heart transplant at the time, the Mother was blind when a baseball hit her in the head. The cost of care ate up the family’s wealth as both parents had lost their jobs.

Jason Bryant and his fellow inmates raised $ 32,000 for the student, mainly by working in cleaning crews. Green graduated last year and is now enrolled at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. He sees the help of the prisoners as a “huge honor”.

And Jason Bryant? Was pardoned by the California governor in 2019. You couldn’t ask for more from a reading group.

Read more good news here.


Scheuer blocks toll investigators – politics

A few days before the showdown to clear up the toll debacle in the Bundestag, a tough argument broke out between the Bundestag member and Federal Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer (CSU). According to information from Süddeutsche Zeitung Scheuer blocks the work of a special toll investigator. The FDP, the Greens and the Left had used him to check Scheuer’s MP mailbox. The goal: to find out whether it was used as a secret communication channel to exchange sensitive toll information.

But the minister lets the lawyer and former Green Bundestag member Jerzy Montag appear as an investigator. This is the result of a current interim report to the Bundestag’s toll investigation committee. The minister has for the time being revoked his consent to view the e-mails, it says.

At first, Scheuer agreed to the viewing of his mailboxes

The report describes the explosive processes in detail. A first meeting with Scheuer on December 1st took place “in a collegial and extremely friendly atmosphere”, noted Monday in the paper. Scheuer had promised “his consent to the viewing” of his MPs and other mailboxes. But shortly before Christmas comes the U-turn: The ministry announced that Scheuer is “postponing” his consent to the viewing of the e-mails. Reason: He wants to await a decision by the Federal Court of Justice on a lawsuit by the opposition. A second appointment with the investigator was canceled and with it the search for important e-mails before the decisive questioning of Scheuer on this Thursday in the Bundestag.

In the opposition, anger is growing about the minister’s unwillingness to provide information. MEPs speak of black holes in the files. Scheuer himself had aroused interest in the mailbox with Volten. It was only after a long delay and in response to inquiries that the Ministry made e-mails available to the committee and justified the delay with an “office mistake”. The opposition suspects that further agreements were made through the mailbox. Scheuer denies that.

The ministry refers to the lawsuit

Mistrust is growing in the committee. “Scheuer has promised complete transparency. He is now withdrawing it with flimsy arguments,” says FDP chairman Christian Jung. “We suspect that on the subject of tolls, secret communication took place via private accounts or the MdB account,” says Jung. Scheuers behavior is the opposite of education. “This is secrecy. We suspect that he is holding back documents that he should have made available to us. That strengthens doubts about his reputation.”

The ministry, however, refers to a complaint by the opposition, with which they demand the submission of log files of the account. “We had already organized the workflow in detail with the investigator,” says a spokeswoman. When the lawsuit came, it had to be stopped. The opposition sees no connection to the lawsuit. The committee of inquiry is working on the failure of the car toll project worth billions. The European Court of Justice had stopped the CSU prestige project in 2019. Scheuer is in distress because he had concluded toll contracts before there was legal certainty. That could be dearly for taxpayers. The operators are demanding damages of 560 million euros from the federal government.