Only twelve percent are very satisfied with the way democracy works
Berlin the FDP starts the new year with the Epiphany meeting CSU with their retreat in Seeon Monastery. The parties are trying to win the approval of the population for their policies. But trust in the parties is not in the best of hands. This emerges from the freedom index 2022, which the Institute for Demoscopy Allensbach (IfD) and the research institute Media Tenor have created and which is available to the Handelsblatt.
According to this, only 24 percent of the population consider the parties to be trustworthy. This is a slight increase of two percentage points compared to 2021. But overall it is a very weak value.
One year after the start of the traffic light government the values for SPD, Greens and FDP are even worse. It is true that 50 percent trust the new federal government and 48 percent trust the institution of the Bundestag. In 2021, however, trust in the federal government and in the Bundestag was still 54 percent.
At the top of the list of state and social institutions are scientists (83 percent), hospitals (78 percent) and small and medium-sized companies (77 percent). Large listed companies are in last place with 21 percent.
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New Year’s Eve in Berlin also sparked a debate about the role of the police and the judiciary. After the riots, there are increasing calls for tougher action by the rule of law. The numbers fit the question “How satisfied are you in general with the functioning of democracy in the Federal Republic and the functioning of our entire political system?”. Only twelve percent are very satisfied with it.
>> Read here: “Freedom”, “double boom”, “social tourism” – the phrases of the year 2022
In addition, in the corona year 2021, the feeling of freedom among Germans had fallen to a low. After the end of most restrictions, many citizens seem to breathe a sigh of relief. The proportion of those who feel free rose from 36 to 45 percent in 2022.
Majority thinks that one cannot express one’s opinion freely
The long and very restrictive corona policy in China and the Russian attack on Ukraine have probably also influenced the sense of freedom. Study director Roland Schatz said: “Developments in the world have also changed the view of one’s own country.” Nevertheless, it is worrying that less than half of Germans still feel free.
A similar picture emerges when it comes to subjective perceptions of freedom of speech. The proportion of those who think that you are in Germany being able to express their opinion freely has also increased – from 45 to 48 percent. In earlier surveys, however, this value was still well over 60 percent.
The fact that the country is divided into two camps is also shown by the answers to another question in the study: 41 percent, four percentage points more than in 2021, say that if in doubt they would opt for more equality and social justice.
Freedom is more important to 47 percent, three percentage points less than a year ago. Since the first study on the subject in 1998, so many people have never prioritized equality.
The two institutes regularly survey the importance of freedom in comparison to other values in the population and reporting, as well as the subjective feeling of freedom of a good 1000 respondents.