May 29, 2013
German Bundestag paid for MP’s trip to private Bilderberg meeting in 2008
Newly Appointed German Automobile Lobbyist and former Minister of State Eckart von Klaeden has told a German accountability group that his visit to the 2008 Bilderberg meeting in Chantilly was paid for by the German people although they apparently do not have a right to know what exactly the elected representative does there. Von Klaeden:
“Although I have not attended the conference as an official representative of my group or the Bundestag (such official attendance is not familiar with the conference), I experienced the conference as very valuable for my work as an MP and as a foreign policy spokesman of my group … The costs incurred by me were paid by the German Bundestag.”
You would say that the participation of en elected official to a private meeting would not be paid by his employer (the people of Germany), for then it is public. But if it’s public, the closed nature of the confab does not obey by the rules of democracy. Either it’s private, in which case the costs of his participation are either his or on the Bilderberg dime- or it’s not private, in which case the meetings are subject to the scrutiny of the German taxpayer.
As chief lobbyist at Daimler AG, Von Klaeden was preceded by former CEO of Daimler Benz AG Jürgen E. Schremp, who attended the Bilderberg conferences of 2005, 2007 and 2009 which makes this particular corporation a big player on the geo-political scene.
This evident lack of transparency would be one thing, if elected officials would go to the private Bilderberg meeting in a private capacity, not burdening the taxpayer with the costs (of course even then the fact that it’s obviously an important enough conference as to attract the world’s biggest economic, military and political players should raise eyebrows). The issue becomes more poignant when these officials claim to go privately, but the taxpayer ends up paying the bill. I’m no prosecutor but his seems in direct violation of the democratic principles they profess to hold dear.
In 2012 Dutch Prime-Minister Mark Rutte was invited to join the former queen of the Netherlands to the Bilderberg meeting (again) in Chantilly, Virginia. After the meeting he was questioned about his participation by a member of parliament. In response to the question if he participated in a private or official capacity, Rutte answered that he was invited as the Prime-Minister of the Netherlands. The follow-up question regarding the costs of his participation was the same as given by the former German MP: the taxpayer.
One year prior Rutte was asked the same questions by another parliamentarian, this time relating to Rutte’s participation in the 2011 Bilderberg conference. After the obvious discrepancy (private-public) was pointed out to the Prime-Minister, Rutte stated:
“I was invited in function of Prime-Minister. However, the meetings are being held under the Chatham House Rules to promote an open exchange of ideas and opinions.”
In other words: the Chatham House Rules appear to overrule the combined constitutions of participating nations, and the participants get away with it in their respective parliaments, no questions asked.