Former Chancellor of Germany Gerhard Schröder often catches a lot of flak for having acting in Gazprom’s interests while in office, pushing through the Nord Stream gas pipeline project at the expense of Eastern Europe’s energy security. At least now we how much he gets paid for it. A report by the German magazine Focus indicates Schröder receives $390,000 annually for endorsing Nord Stream, but this business relationship is becoming complicated due to all the bad press he receives. The report states that Schröder is increasingly becoming a problem for the Nord Stream consortium due to his negative image in Germany and Eastern Europe as lobbyist for the Kremlin (we recall his recent road show to advertise Russia’s democratic credentials). For some time the pipeline consortium has been planning to take Schröder out of the media focus, but this has apparently been difficult to achieve given the former chancellor’s craving for recognition. It’s interesting to learn that not even his Russian masters can keep him under control, not even after they give him a completely unearned academic award. Schröder had better shape up soon, or else face replacement by a more docile former head of state … such as Romano Prodi.