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Zilkens'
News Blog

Zilkens' News Blog

Dr. Stephan Zilkens comments weekly on current events concerning art. Subscribe for free

Dr. Stephan Zilkens

Stephan Zilkens

Zilkens' News Blog 20 2022

Dear readers of Kobel's Art Week,

what is wrong with a country where Sunday newspapers are already printed on Friday nights and delivered on Saturday mornings with their weekday sister paper? Not very much, one would think. It doesn't make the analyses any better and rather prepares arguments that have something to do with resource conservation and thus herald the end of this form of publication. North Rhine-Westphalia has voted and the under-30s have helped the Greens to enormous success. Admittedly, at the federal level they are doing quite well in the midst of the war and are showing a flexibility that one would not have thought possible months ago, moreover, they are ultimately able to convey even difficult messages in a sympathetic way. However, there is also the core in the whole thing, which narrows ideologically by converting energy resources, because it excludes nuclear energy as a possibility. The latter would reduce far more CO² emissions in a short period of time than renewables ever could, if one takes into account the CO² pollution caused by the production of a wind turbine or solar panels. Land consumption and energy security are not even in the equation. In any case, North Rhine-Westphalia will experience an exciting formation of a government - and it is doubtful whether a non-party member will make it to any ministerial seat. In any case, Isabel Pfeiffer-Poensgen has done a good job for science, art and culture. Should Kutschaty muddle through, it is to be feared that the Cologne SPD duo Börschel/Ott, one of whom tried to subjugate the Cologne public utility company and the other of whom did not only act in the public interest, will be rewarded with ministerial posts.

Erich Maria Remarque is currently rewriting his book: nothing new in the East - but it is in the West. Finland and Sweden want to join NATO - Putin's friends in Ankara seem to have something against it, let's see what it costs the other NATO member states.

Do you also have a Marylin by Warhol at home? But it has to be a very specific one - then you can probably be happy about a valuation of around 200 million USD. Whether your heirs in a country where there is inheritance tax will be happy about this is questionable, because there is a threat of taxes that cannot be paid with a clipping from the picture. Either they make some NFT out of it in the hope that someone will give something for it, or they make it available to a museum that hopefully will take the necessary care and not turn off the air conditioning because of high energy costs. Then there might be state liability, which in some countries only applies if the employees of the institution have made a mistake. Saving energy costs does not have to be a mistake, depending on the political colour.

Deregulation in the insurance market in Germany was not until 1994 - until then there were monopolies, e.g. in building insurance. Our profession, that of the insurance broker, was given a larger field of activity because the disappearance of monopolies creates changes in the offers and providers that are hardly comprehended by people who are not familiar with the matter. We help through this, also in the event of a claim - and you get to know the product providers particularly well during the realisation of the product - especially since government agencies insist on the strict separation of operations (product creation and underwriting) and claims (consequences from the realisation of the product). This affects the whole pack, virtually worldwide, and rarely leads to an optimal solution for the client. But there are also big differences between the companies that the insurance brokers know. Sometimes the cheapest is not the best.

We wish you a good start into the new week with the necessary rain for agriculture.

Yours sincerely, Stephan Zilkens and the team of Zilkens Fine Art Insurance Broker GmbH in Cologne and Solothurn.

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