The 29-year-old Youtuber has put his last “destruction” video for the federal election online. Austrian politicians can be happy that he is only concerned with Germany.
“Imagine a teenager was killed because of your untruths, you are deeply wired into the two biggest financial scandals of the last decades, you just say ‘I don’t remember anything’, you may not want any documents and you could probably become Federal Chancellor”.
This breathtaking sentence comes from Youtuber Rezo and gilds the Chancellor candidate Olaf Scholz (SPD), who continues to lead in the polls. The accompanying video is about corruption in politics, which “obviously” and “literally” “fucked up” the 29-year-old. And yes, there are young people who talk like that, not only in Germany.
What is only available in Germany, however, is Rezo: blue quiff, strange language, tens of thousands of fans. The man from Wuppertal – he does not want to reveal his real name in public – published three videos on the “destruction” of German politics for the Bundestag election; they bear the names “Incompetence”, “Climate Disaster” and just “Corruption”. A video from the martial-sounding “Destruction” trilogy was clicked five million times.
Now you can think what you want of Rezo. At least the jury of the renowned German Henri-Nannen-Journalistenpreis his videos, which he provides with a single source, are worthy of an award in 2020. In any case, it is clear that German politics is not sure how to react to this form of public debate. When the Rezo video “The Destruction of the CDU” came out for the 2019 EU election, the Union considered having its then shooting star Philipp Amthor respond. His replica got so wrong that it was never shown and locked away in the party’s poison cabinet. Now, Amthor’s name appears in connection with allegations of corruption in the third of the new Rezo videos.
Austrian politicians can count themselves lucky that there is no Youtuber in this country who has dared to do a similar thing. Because Rezo may not be for everyone. It can also be asked whether it is really beneficial for the culture of political debate to always want to “destroy” everything quickly. But one thing is also certain: Rezo’s style is damn hard to counter for most politicians.