Need and need

- Yg. 1927, No. 37 -

So, so: once again a memorandum is being worked out in the Reich Ministry of the Interior. About the "reasons for the decline in the birth rate". Very interesting. Yes, what are the reasons?

If I may give secret advice to the privy councilor ... No, not that, I can imagine that the lady is over fifty ... How many children? Two? And just a seven-room apartment? With all due respect, that's quite unusual ... No, something else, that's what I wanted to say: if I may advise Privy Councilor, go to room 4327, the third door in the front hall on the left, to your colleague from the Housing count.

The honorable Ministry of the Interior officially announces about this count, carried out with the help of many huge sheets of paper in May: “The result corresponds to the previous estimates. In second and further households that run their own business but do not have an independent apartment, 660.000 were determined, and around 240.000 of other families that neither manage their own housekeeping nor own their own apartment were found. For the municipalities not included in the census ... a surcharge of an estimated 50.000 - 100.000 cases is possible, so that in purely numerical terms there is a shortfall of one million apartments. "

One million apartments too few! But don't be frightened, it's not that bad. “The actual need for housing,” continues the official communique, “cannot be taken directly from these figures, however, since not every household or family that does not have their own apartment needs one”. Even in the pre-war period, around two percent of the apartments in medium-sized and large cities were occupied by two or more households; and today this percentage will "undoubtedly have to be assumed to be higher."

Didn't you know that there are such modest families? Who do not “claim” their own apartment? Yes there is. It doesn't even occur to them to claim. You would very much like to have your own apartment, the people; but they cannot pay it, so they do not claim it, and there is no need in this case.

All these poor people need an apartment, you reply. How humane you think, dearest! But one can very well need something and yet have no need. Need and need are not the same thing, you should know. If you are starving, but unfortunately without a penny in your pocket, you have no “need” for bread. If you are with your consumptive wife and five scrofulous children - no, I'm just pretending! - If you live in a basement hole in Berlin-NE with your dear in-laws, but you don't earn anything as a casual worker, then there is no need for housing on your part.

They earned themselves an apartment, of course; but you can not earn it. The need was there; but you are too needy to have a need.

To return to our theme: that people who like each other, also want children, is in itself the given. A woman who loves a man feels the need to have children from him. But without a flat, they have no need for children.

For the statistician this means: declining birth rate. Privy councils in ministries write memoranda about it. Other secret councils in the same ministries deal with housing censuses.

As a result, there is a strong demand for secret services in Germany. Although they are not a need in themselves.

1927, 37 · Rauschenchnabel

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