Luger: "You should have been vaccinated"

Corona is still there, at least in the form of a message that Linz Mayor Klaus Luger (SP) receives on his mobile phone every Thursday at 5 p.m. It is the Corona traffic light graphic, one of the many episodes of the long Corona years. Luger sharply criticized the traffic light when it was introduced. With today’s balance sheet over three years of the corona pandemic, he is also harshly in court with the federal government. The only concession: the government did a good job in the first few months. “It was a great achievement to shut down the country, maintain the infrastructure and prevent panic,” said Luger, especially since little was known about the virus. By the summer at the latest, the performance had gotten worse and worse.

Corona as a “communication fiasco”

Specifically, Luger criticizes the “communication fiasco” during the lockdowns. Instead of a nationwide, uniform and consistent strategy, the federal government would have taken a politically motivated zigzag course and raised expectations that could not be met. Furthermore, technical errors would have led to a massive loss of trust among the population, for example if entry bans or night-time exit restrictions were overturned by the Constitutional Court. Finally, Luger criticizes the data chaos and cites as an example that different federal and state agencies have published figures on the infection process, some of which differ greatly from each other. The weaknesses in digitization still exist today, as the current watering can subsidy in the course of inflation shows. “The Ministry of Finance cannot bring together any budget data and therefore cannot introduce a budget cap for energy subsidies,” said Luger.

Luger defends compulsory vaccination

All of this would have led to a massive division in the population, which continues to this day and which Luger was able to follow regularly from his office window, he alludes to the mostly Friday Corona demos on the main square. Luger sees the obligation to vaccinate as a “communicative own goal”, but not as the main reason for the split. Unlike many politicians and experts, Luger stands by his support at the time for the measure that was decided but never implemented. However, they should have been followed through, according to Luger.

weaknesses in cooperation

“The time of the pandemic has revealed massive weaknesses in the cooperation between the federal government and the executive authorities at district and municipal level. For the longest stretches, districts and municipalities were on their own in the pandemic work and had to ensure the implementation of the measures – from the sensible vaccination offer to questionable mass tests,” says Luger. These mistakes must be dealt with comprehensively and conclusions drawn from them quickly.

Raml calls for “social reconciliation”

The City Councilor for Health in Linz, Michael Raml (FP), also calls for a reappraisal. Politicians, above all the federal government, owe the citizens a comprehensive, self-critical and transparent review of these years. The city of Linz sets a good example and workse intensively on a guide that analyzes and summarizes the experiences and solutions in the course of the pandemic. Personally, Raml sees the federal government’s one-sided focus on the health consequences of Corona as a mistake. For example, the complete neglect of preventive measures for other diseases had really fatal consequences. In addition, Raml calls for more self-sufficiency in key industries such as the manufacture of medicines and “social reconciliation”.

Incidentally, Luger always deletes the traffic light graphics without looking at them. This is due to the lack of relevance. The basis for the coloring are the cases newly reported to the magistrate – there were 57 today. From the wastewater tests, however, one knows that around 2,000 people in Linz must be corona-positive.

Christian Diabl

Christian Diabl


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