Talk:Christoph Blocher

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Untitled[edit]

Talk about the way to link to predecessors moved to: Talk:List_of_members_of_the_Swiss_Federal_Council


the googlebomb bit is not very relevant, sorry (although it ties into the current ado about Blocher). I won't object at all to its removal. dab 15:04, 7 Oct 2004 (UTC)


From Alex:

    His predecessor Ruth Metzler-Arnold became
    the third federal councillor in history not
    to be reelected. 

The above is not an information about Blocher, but about R. Metzler:

    He was attacked by his collegue Pascal Couchepin
    in an interview with the NZZ newspaper in the
    October 3rd Sunday edition.

The above seems useless to me: it says what Couchepin did, and does not even specify the subject of the polemic and Blocher's position.

And the following is also not about Blocher, but about someone else's "opinion" about him.

     The ongoing controversy is also reflected in the
     scandal resulting from a performance by the painter
     Thomas Hirschhorn [...] where an actor pretended to
     urinate on an image of Blocher.

If I don't hear counter-arguments whithin a week, I will delete the above phrases from Wiki.

--212.41.68.49 20:51, 25 Jan 2005 (UTC) (Alex)

um, I don't get it, are you arguing that in an article about a person, no other people should be mentioned? Blocher's notability is almost entirely due to the controversies he stirs up. Metzlers non-re-election was a major example of these. dab () 21:32, 25 Jan 2005 (UTC)

An article about a person serves to characterize that person. I object to the three fragments because, as they are now, they do not characterize the person. In order to make these three events relevant for the Blocher's characterization, you should show in what way are they characteristic for Blocher. For example, in the Metzler case, you should maybe show the specific (persumably shameful) role of Blocher ih her non-reelection, or at least his opinion about the event. In Couchepin's case, you should maybe specify what is the polemic about and what is Blocher's position. Without these additional explanations, the inclusion of the three facts that you mention is useless and confusing. It could be that they influence the reader in a subliminal way, as an innuendo, but this is not what we want, isn't it ? --212.41.64.165 15:33, 26 Jan 2005 (UTC) (Alex)

If you feel that the way the article is phrased at the moment contains innuendo, feel free to fix it. But the events themselves are essentially tied to Blocher's person. His election as federal councellor was tumultous. True, he didn't say a word during the election. The tumult was caused by other people. The election was conducted by other people. But it was still Blocher's election, and it will be remembered in connection with his name. Come on, by your reasoning, we'd have to scrap the entire "Public perception and assessments" section on George W. Bush... Again, feel free to fix the wording if it's biased. Feel free to add additional biographical information if you feel that the controversies take up too large a fraction of the article. But the references stay. dab () 17:51, 26 Jan 2005 (UTC)

No, sorry, I will not finish your job, that is to make sense of what you (or someone else) wrote. In particular, I do not wish to try to figure out what your purpose in listing the three events was. Think about it: if you just tell a reader that, for example, Couchepin disputed in NZZ some opinion of Blocher and don't even specify what it was, this information will be useless to him. I've suggested a resolution of our dispute: add to each of your three event descriptions whatever is needed to make them usefull to the reader. Or think of some other, more efficient, less confused (and confusing) way to convey whatever you wanted to convey.
If your intention was just to illustrate that there are numerous polemics arround Blocher, what you did is an overkill: the rest of the article already makes it quite clear.
Besides, the G. W. Bush's section in Wiki you are pointing me to is a presentation (an objetive one, I presume) of various opinion polls and has no discernable similitude to our dispute, which is about an unfinished work. --212.41.64.165 21:13, 26 Jan 2005 (UTC) (Alex)
look, this is how it works: I'm not paid to finish this article. I added some factual information, which, I assure you, are directly connected with the notability of the article subject. If you find the wording is biased, you point that out, and fix it (I do not think it is). If you think that other information should be added, you are free to do it. It is not "my job" to finish this article, and I never claimed it was finished. I'm just trying to keep you from making it even less finished by removing information. If you are not prepared to spend time on improving this article, you are free to leave your comments here and maybe someone will come along and improve the article in the future. This is not "my" article, and I will not finish it. Removing stuff on grounds that the article is unfinished is not how WP works. If you care enough, go ahead and collect biographical information, and make it into a nice biograpy with a small "ongoing controversies" section. In my opinion, the controversies are the only thing notable here, so I won't do it, but you are certainly welcome to it. dab () 08:54, 27 Jan 2005 (UTC)
that said, we could make clearer that the two events are unheard of in Swiss politics. It was unheard of that a federal councillor was publicly attacked by one of his fellows as "anti-democratic" (yes, the incident could be listed on Couchepins article as well). It was unheard of (for more than 100 years) that a federal councillor was not re-elected. These were events that created considerable turmoil in the political landscape. dab () 09:03, 27 Jan 2005 (UTC)

The attitude of "I'm not paid to finish this article", after just throwing some facts in a quite coherent article and refusing to integrate them, is not conductive to maintain Wikipedia's seriousness and your reputation. But it is your choice.
If you are proud of your achievement, you might consider adding your signature to the three fragments in dispute, in order to facilitate the traceability.--212.41.64.38 21:53, 28 Jan 2005 (UTC) (Alex)

"otherwise coherent"? Are you kidding me? there are not even sections. It's a stub. Take de:Christoph Blocher for reference. They have "Berufliche Karriere" and "Politische Karriere". A large part of "Politische Karriere" is taken up by the events following Dec 2003. Ruth Metzler is mentioned. Granted, Couchepin isn't, but Jean-Jacques Bertschi is. Probably not someone you would think more notable. Look: If you want to help with this article, create an account and get to work. If you don't: there are 200,000 stubs on wikipedia, containing information useful to some, less so to others. Why did you decide to nitpick on this particular one? I don't think mentioning three simple facts is an "acheivment" of mine. It's one of some 2,000 articles I have briefly edited, that's all. If you believe in "acheivment" so strongly, go ahead and build an article with some structure here. Trust I'll be back to insert my tidbits at adequate positions, though. dab () 22:44, 28 Jan 2005 (UTC)


So, you think it wasn't coherent? (BTW, I wrote "quite".) Do you think that by throwing some desintegrated fragments of infos sans queue ni tête you succeeded to improve the article? Anyway, just add your signature if you are satisfied with your improvements.
And the J.-J. Bertschi business in de:Christoph Blocher should be either expanded to make it intelligible, or removed alltogether. --212.41.64.38 23:03, 28 Jan 2005 (UTC) (Alex)
fine. I say, put your money where your mouth is. A normal encyclopedia is 'take it or leave it'. This one is: take it, leave it, or contribute. Your comments have been hostile and condescending from the outset. Now let's see you do some work. And by 'work' I mean adding, not removing material. dab () 07:25, 29 Jan 2005 (UTC)

1. "Doind some work" is good, provided it is not mindless. In this case, if noone is willing or capable of consistently and intelligibly integrate your three facts, the next best thing to do is to remove them.
2. It is nice of you to invite me "to build an article with some structure", only to throw, as promised, your "tidbits at adequate positions", i.e. to vandalize it, afterwards.

ok. maybe I have misunderstood. we are talking about:

  1. the election of Dec 2003. Metzler was not reelected. Huge uproar.
  2. Couchepin's attack. The media went wild, talk of "government crisis".
  3. the Hirschhorn incident. Big scandal. Pro Helvetia funds cut, media coverage for weeks.

Do you claim

(a) these events are not well explained ('unintelligible'), they should be covered in greater depth?
(b) they are not properly 'integrated' in the article?
(c) these events are not notable?

If you simply don't understand what the article says, why don't you say so? Point out the weak point, ffs, I'm not here to explain these things to you, just tell me what is 'intelligible', and I'll try to make it clearer. I have yet to see how your structured article would look like. If you are convinced already that mention of what amounted to Blocher's main presence in the media over the past 14 months is "vandalism" I cannot help you. At this point, I believe you are either just trolling, or acting on an agenda different from what you choose to express here. If you are not prepared to do some constructive work, or point out what is "unintelligible" here, why don't you just find something else to do. Go over to PallaPalla, for example, and try to convince people of your notions of notability there. dab () 16:56, 29 Jan 2005 (UTC)


If you are interested in an answer to the first part, you will have to remove the second part.--212.41.86.88 20:02, 30 Jan 2005 (UTC) (Alex)

There is no "four-member governing coalition" in Switzerland[edit]

The statement that there is a "four-member governing coalition" in Switzerland will mislead the reader: The Swiss Government (Bundesrat, Federal Council) ist not built by a coalition of parties, but simply by the four largest parties in the Country. The seven federal councillors take decisions according to a system that is called "Kollegialitätsprinzip" (I don't know an english translation), see the links below (wikipedia in german).

Unfortunately, I am not able to describe the situation properly in english, but perhaps someone else will do it.

--193.5.216.100 12:34, 21 July 2005 (UTC) (from Switzerland)

If you have a legislature in which four parties agree to form the Cabinet (Federal Council), then the English word for that is a coalition. As I understand it, it is not compulsory for the four largest parties to participate. If, for example, the Socialists decided to go into opposition rather than be in government with Blocher, they could do so, and then there would be a three-party coalition. Kollegialitätsprinzip in English would be "principle of collegiality." Adam 06:01, 23 July 2005 (UTC)

--

I'm still not convinced that you can talk about a coalition. The 7 Federal Councillors are not appointed by a coalition that has won popular elections, or by a Prime Minister or a President, but each of them is elected by the parliament. The "Zauberformel" that determined the distribution of the seats among the 4 largest parties until the last elections was a custom for decades, but neither fixed by law nor made up on a case-by-case basis... Interesting that we use the term "Konkordanz" (also: "Konkordanzdemokratie"), which means that there is no real oppositional party, but the system tries to integrate almost everybody in the government (not only in parliament, but also in the legislative).

Of course, the two Socialists in the Federal Council could decide to resign, and then it would be the parliament's duty to elect two new persons. If then, the socialist party did not propose new candidates, probably there would be a purely "bürgerlich" council. But this is rather theoretical.

In german, we just say "Bundesratsparteien", but nobody would ever use the term "Koalition", although this term is very well known, but only for other countries.

So, I stick to my central point: The reader is mislead by the notion of "coalition". I'd propose "the largest of the four parties in the Federal Council". Would this formulation be correct? --193.5.216.100 14:06, 27 July 2005 (UTC) (me again, from CH)

I agree, "coalition" is misleading. The possibility of a major party choosing opposition is very real, though; the SP in particuar has repeatedly seriously considered leaving the council, last time at Blocher's election. It may still happen yet. Similarly, the SVP has threatened to go into opposition if Blocher was not elected. This was not considered a very serious threat, since they already had a councillor, Schmid, whom they would have had to renounce, too. dab () 19:40, 27 December 2005 (UTC)

Not a "current national leader"?[edit]

There is no Prime Minister Blocher, no President Blocher, just Herr Bundesrat Blocher. If he was the "national leader" things in Switzerland could be very different! Wallie 15:45, 1 May 2006 (UTC)

That category is added to articles about people listed on List_of_state_leaders. Blocher and the six others are listed. Maybe that category should be renamed to "Current state leaders". -- User:Docu
No. He is not the national leader of Switzerland, and should not be in the category "Current National Leader". He is the Justice and Police Minister. If you don't believe me, look at the Categories in the Deutsch site. He is "Bundesrat für Justiz und Polizei" not "Bundeskanzler". Wallie 21:30, 8 May 2006 (UTC)
In Switzerland, they are all just "Bundesrat" (Federal Councilors), nothing more. The Federal Chancellor ("Bundeskanzler") isn't deciding on anything. See Swiss Federal Council for full details. BTW the interwiki on Category:Current_national_leaders leads to the wrong page in de: (or Merkel is missing there). -- User:Docu
I know what a Bundesrat is. A Bundesrat is not a "National Leader". I know that you will keep putting this back, and I don't know why. I know you would like Switzerland to have a "national leader", but no such thing exists here. Certainly Blocher does not represent Switzerland as it's leader. Anyway I thought there were only six federal councillers left, as Herr Deiss has had enough. Wallie 21:53, 9 May 2006 (UTC)
For my better understanding, would you provide us with your definition of a "National Leader" (at least in regards to the , we are debating (current national leader)? BTW Wikipedia is correct about Deiss, Monsieur le Conseiller Fédéral is still in office. -- User:Docu
Firstly, we don't appear to be debating. You are making Mr. Blocher a "national leader" when he is not. I have checked that I am correct. I have double checked with the Swiss authorities, Bern, lawyers, and local politicians. All say that Mr. Blocher is NOT the national leader of Switzerland. However, I think you will always categorize him as such whatever I say. You are treating it as an edit war. Wallie 19:53, 10 May 2006 (UTC)
A national leader in this context is simply the person who is in charge of the government of the country. The person can go overseas, represent the country, and speak for the Government. The person can also remove or place people in positions under him or her. No Swiss person has this authority. That is very clear. The Swiss system is deliberately set up in this way to prevent abuse of power. Wallie 19:53, 10 May 2006 (UTC)
Now to Bundesrat Blocher. Mr Blocher or other members of the Swiss Federal Counciller cannot personally do anything like a so called national leader. Every time he says or does anything representing the country, there is a vote among the whole seven, and he says and does what the outcome of the vote is, whether he personally agrees with it or not. I know the problem you are having. You would like to nominate a person as a "national leader". It won't work with Switzerland. The Federal Council is like a board of directors of a company. Or in political terms, like the Executive of the United States Government or the Cabinet in other countries. The fact is that Switzerland is run by the Federal Council as a group. For the outside world it is run by the President, but he is still not the "national leader". So in actual fact, if you want the national leader of Switzerland, it is the Federal Council. The problem is that this is not a person. As far as nominating a person or persons in Switzerland is concerned, there is no national leader. Can you not see that it is just plain silly to nominate 7 people as national leaders in Switzerland, when the United States, China and Russia, and many other countries only have one. Wallie 19:53, 10 May 2006 (UTC)
There may be a confusion between "a leader" and "the leader". For other countries several persons may be listed as well, e.g. Jović is included. Besides QE2 is in the same category and she is not "in charge of the government of the country". -- User:Docu
In this case it is "the leader". If you apply "a leader", then Rumsfeld and all the rest come in too. I think I am wasting my time on this. I think that Docu has made up his mind, and no matter what I say, he will not change it. Wallie 22:01, 10 May 2006 (UTC)
I can understand that you may disagree with this particular member of the Federal Council, but if you don't bother to explain why others (Jović, QE2) are included in the category, it just looks like you are arbitrarily removing him. -- User:Docu
OK. Queen Elizabeth is clear. She is the Head of State, and does not have to answer to anyone else. The category appears to be for Heads of States and Prime Ministers who can individually represent the country at the highest level, and receive foreign leaders officially. Blocher can do neither. Neither can the other 6. As for Mr Jović, I don't know. If he is in some sort of collective decision making body like Blocher, then he should be removed too. If he can represent the country himself, like a President, then he is the (a) national leader. Note that just becuase someone elses name is there, doesn't mean it's correct either. I am not trying arkward. If I thought there was any way that Blocher was a national leader in the context, I would definitely include him. But he is not. Wallie 17:28, 13 May 2006 (UTC)
As QE2 is not "in charge of the government of the country", would you be so kind and expand the definition you offered above? If you don't bother, it looks like you just want to remove one article. -- User:Docu
Did I say the Queen was in charge of the government of a country? No. This is getting way of the subject. I am not an expert in political science, and have tried to answer your questions as best I can. We are specially discussing Blocher here and Switzerland, not any other country. I do know about Mr. Blocher's situation, and Swiss Law. And he is not a or the national leader in the context of the category. Nor am I trying to remove this article. To say I can't be bothered is very unfair, as I have written at length to your questions. Wallie 19:13, 13 May 2006 (UTC)

Actually, I am somewhat of a political science expert, and last time I checked our constitution, it was very clear on the subject. "Staatsoberhaupt" = "Head of State" in Switzerland is the entire federal council. So, our "nation leader" are all the 7 dwarfs in Bern, including (to my deepest regret) Christoph Blocher. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 212.126.162.58 (talk) 10:40, 24 October 2007 (UTC)

Look again. The Frederal Council as a whole is the Head of State. Each member on it is not a "Head of State". That is the whole idea of having a Federal Council, so you do not have individuals being head of state. It is clear that Docu and others hanker for Herr Blocher to be head of state, but that he is not. Wallie (talk) 15:07, 15 December 2007 (UTC)

Further explanation[edit]

Hi Docu, I got this from the Swiss Federal Council article. Thought it might explain some things. I now know you mean well. I do too. As you have mentioned earlier, it is difficult to classify these people. Also, the Swiss system is different to anywhere else.

The key wording is: '"The President is not the Swiss head of state". Also, nearly all countries have one or two names in this list. Switzerland has seven! This is really what raises alarm bells with me.

Presidency:

Each year, one of the seven Councillors is elected by the Federal Assembly as President of the Confederation. The Federal Assembly also elects a Vice President. By convention, the positions of President and Vice President rotate annually, each Councillor thus becoming Vice President and then President every seven years while in office.

According to the Swiss order of precedence, the President of the Confederation is the highest-ranking Swiss official. He or she presides over Council meetings and carries out certain representative functions that, in other countries, are the business of the Head of State. In urgent situations where a Council decision cannot be made in time, her or she is empowered to act on behalf of the whole Council. Apart from that, though, he or she is a primus inter pares, having no power above and beyond the other six Councillors.

The President is not the Swiss head of state (this function is carried out by the Council in corpore, that is, in its entirety). However, it has recently become usual that the President acts and is recognized as head of state while conducting official visits abroad, as the Council (also by convention) doesn't leave the country in corpore. More often, though, official visits abroad are carried out by the head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs. Visiting heads of state are received by the Federal Council in corpore.

Wallie 06:40, 14 May 2006 (UTC)


The photograph with the cops in front of a fire has no caption, what is it about? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 87.162.51.51 (talk) 20:36, 26 September 2007 (UTC)

It is the unrest which followed the controversial visit of Blocher to the Swiss fair. My only quick lens that night was a telelens (I had considered attempting to take a portrait of Blocher himself in the morning), hence the tight framing. Rama (talk) 11:18, 17 December 2007 (UTC)

See Also[edit]

The "See Also" links were removed, but I put them back. They seem to be good enough to refer to. Sincerely, GeorgeLouis 20:30, 24 October 2007 (UTC)

Fine with me. I was wondering if maybe they should just be linked from the main text in the correct context. -- Patrice 08:54, 25 October 2007 (UTC)

Minister of Justice[edit]

Does Blocher bear the title "Minister of Justice" in German, French, Italian or Romansch? If not, then "equivalent to" would be appropriate. Nevetheless, it would be best to omit this "explanation" and just give his title alone. Awaiting your reply. Sincerely, GeorgeLouis 16:37, 26 October 2007 (UTC)

For example the NZZ refers to him as "Justizminister" (German for "Minister of Justice") [1] -- Patrice 11:25, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
The title is "Federal Councelor, head of the Justice and Police department". The Swiss system has this particularity of having one single ministry for Interior and Justice. Rama (talk) 11:15, 17 December 2007 (UTC)

Corrections[edit]

Quote: "As an industrialist, he made a fortune in the chemical industry with the EMS-Chemie corporation."

Actually that's not true. He made his original fortune as stock exchange speculator, where he became aquainted with Martin Ebner (head of BZ Bank). With that money, he buyed EMS-Chemie. He's just a very successful racketeer (not to say SPIV), and not an industrialist at all! —Preceding unsigned comment added by 83.79.178.6 (talk) 19:06, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

Biased Text[edit]

I have removed the unsourced statement "Many fear that this victory marks the beginning of a new dark era of Swiss isolationism and provincialism born out of fear in light of European financial instability, that will ultimately produce damage to Switzerland's place in world economy, science and technology"

This does not seem to be a neutral statement and has no citation. Certainly if there were a poll on the Swiss people's opinion of Mr. Blocher that would be more appropriate. Colonycat (talk) 03:36, 2 April 2014 (UTC)

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