D.he most amazing thing about this text, written by a journalist and filmmaker, is the fact that it takes 577 pages to come up with an opinion for the first time. And that the author writes that he neither longed for it nor pushed, until then he had downright failed to have an opinion or at least to formulate it and publish it in large numbers. But now he is the editor of the daily newspaper Die Welt und der Welt am Sonntag, and now he is responsible for creating meaning and producing opinions. And on the pages that follow, Stefan Aust demonstrates that creating and possibly even justifying opinions was never the greatest of his talents. If, for example, he countered the children who skip school on Fridays, saying that the climate has always changed, then that is more simple than original.
On the left, Aust writes right at the beginning, he was never, which, at least at first glance, is an astonishing self-description for a man who worked for the left-wing magazine Konkret in the sixties, who read Ulrike Meinhof’s columns with Rudi Dutschke to Prague drove and hid the student leader Karl Heinz Roth, wanted by the police, in his apartment. And sometimes, when he talks about the student revolt and writes about “the comrades” in a way that you only do if you see yourself as a comrade, sometimes the text sounds (probably against the author’s intention) as if Aust were the rebelling Closer to students than he can admit today. But that he, the journalist, the observer and the writer, sought and found above all the more interesting minds, the better stories and, last but not least, the more exciting life in this milieu, you immediately believe him. And that he never liked the dictatorship of the proletariat, too.
Sympathy for the Devil
“You know it: a bit of freedom, Star Club, Coca-Cola, fresh air, preferably in the morning when the grass is still wet with dew, then a horse between the thighs, speed and wind and rain. Lots of noise, beat music, a little smell of the big wide world. . . “This quote, from a letter from the twenty-year-old Aust to his girlfriend at the time, is his only commitment to subjective desires and passions, apart from a few almost tender passages about horses, which are more than a hobby to him. Otherwise, however, Aust does not feel and does not mean either. He’s there, he’s watching, he’s describing. And the fact that these sober protocols of what happened often have a great magic is not only one of the strengths of this book. It is due to possibly the greatest talent of Stefan Aust, the talent to be there when something happens.