November 11, 2002
AH, TAXES...THE FERTILIZER OF REVOLUTION:Schroeder song storms German charts (Reuters, 11/11/02)
German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder has no comment on a popular song mocking his broken election promises not to raise taxes, according to his spokesman, as a video ridiculing the tax increases made its debut. [...]
German comedian Elmar Brandt, who has made a career out of imitating Schroeder's voice, has surged up the German charts with his catchy parody of "The Ketchup Song" by Spanish dance trio "Las Ketchup" which was a massive hit across Europe and Latin America this autumn.
"Promises that were made yesterday can be broken today," Brandt sings in a voice identical to Schroeder's. "I'll raise your taxes, I'll empty your pockets, every one of you nerds stashes some cash away, but I'll find it no matter where it is.
"I'll raise taxes now because the election is over and you can't fire me now."
Schroeder's centre-left Social Democrat-Greens government has slumped dramatically in voter surveys since the September 22 polls after breaking election promises not to raise taxes.
The government said tax increases became necessary because of worsening fiscal conditions discovered after the election.
"I'll rip you nerds off, you'll be overpowered, I'm always in for a surprise," Brandt, 30, sings in the song. "There is no tax that I can't collect. I want your bank notes, your sweaters, your cash and your piggy banks.
"Dog tax, tobacco tax, car tax, ecological tax -- did you really think that was the end of the line?" he sings. "Like a pirate hunting for income, I'll raise all your taxes and if you're broke, you can buy your food at a discount store or go hungry."
With any luck, Mr. Brandt will prove to be Germany's Howard Jarvis. Posted by Orrin Judd at November 11, 2002 8:25 PM