Social Armageddon?


Those who go too far have lost their bearings.

German proverb

To be immediately clear: Armageddon (also known as Armageddon), or more commonly Armageddon, in the Revelation of John describes the place of the end-time decisive battle in the “War of the great day of God, the Almighty”. In a secular sense (because “God” does not interest us, dissenters anyway, but the Bible itself!), This expression is used for very large, all-destructive catastrophes. Speaking of biblical metaphors, one can call today’s highly topical trade union conflict with the patronage a social armageddon, whether the patronage of the classic socio-political Luxembourg model of tripartite being abandoned by this patronage, that of social dialogue at one table, together with the government and the unions, no longer want to hear anything.

The last book of the Bible, the Book of Revelation, gives Christians detailed information about the events of the end times. According to the text, Jesus John showed the things that will and must happen in the end times, shortly before Jesus comes again. God wanted to make sure that people don’t just live their lives blindly, but have clues that we can all orientate on. A passage of text that is more than appropriate for a properly functioning society, which some contemporaries should take a closer look at “in modern times”. The role of “God” has to be played by the government in the socio-political context that is at stake here, especially when social dialogue is at risk. Briefly described, the tripartite that is so important to all of us, the “triplet”, or the “Luxembourg model of social dialogue”, is based on an institutionalized and continuous dialogue between government, employers and trade unions on important economic and social issues with the aim of reaching a consensus This tripartite was introduced in the 1970s after the severe steel crisis that threatened to deeply shake Luxembourgish society, and in the meantime sectoral tripartites have also emerged and the search for mutually acceptable solutions to economic and social problems within them Advisory bodies have become the norm – as one could naively assume at least to this day.The tripartite, which was originally conceived as a crisis instrument limited in time and in the sector (the steel industry), has become a kind of platform for a permanent institutiona dialogue.

In the age of digitization, in which the direct contact among people who also want to talk to each other or, as in this case the tripartite, obviously – as the term “dialogue” already says in a social context – should no longer be is desirable, the UEL seems to advance accordingly in advance obedience in the sense of the negative consequences of digital technology of dehumanization. However, it must be fairly emphasized that digitization naturally has its positive sides. The tried and tested “Luxembourg-style social model” (according to the OGB-L in its press organ) is easily canceled and in this very modern age of “homo digitalis” you want to avoid any direct contact with the unions, which are more than annoying to the patronage. In the eyes of the UEL, unfortunately, this (still) real political evil of representing the legitimate interests of the people dependent on wages or salaries is definitely an annoying event for the employer in direct confrontation at the negotiating table together with the government representatives in this tripartite, who definitely wants to get rid of this by means of a clear declaration of war (some speak plainly of a declaration of war) to the unions. The coming great challenges of the digital age, which will come to all of us and in which (as always) some socio-political decisions will have to be made in healthy compromises, indeed risk the class struggle as the President of the OGB-L in clear statement and in the jargon of the classic trade union movement.

This frontal attack by employers on the social dialogue that has been working well in our country for around 40 years can only provoke a resolute counter-reaction.

Do we really want to risk social Armageddon?

Frank Bertemes


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here