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Ich muss eingestehen: I listen to Rammstein. In their song, "Mehr," Till says the following phrase:

Bescheidenheit? Hahaha, alles was recht ist!

in the following context:

Was ich habe ist mir zu wenig

Ich brauche viel, ich brauche ganz viel

Hab nichts zu schenken

Wozu Verzicht?

Zwar bin ich reich

Doch reicht das nicht

Bescheidenheit? Alles was recht ist

Ich nehme alles, auch wenn es schlecht ist

Ich werde nie satt, ich werde nie satt

Es ist besser wenn man mehr hat

What does he mean by the phrase "Alles was recht ist?"

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3 Answers 3

up vote 5 down vote accepted

While user3126997's answer may be correct: The short answer is that Alles, was recht ist is similar to So weit kommt's noch in that it can be translated as You got to be kidding! or a contemporary sarcastic Yeah ... right....

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Perfect translation of the intended meaning. Would love to give more than +1 –  Mac Jan 20 at 13:24

"alles, was recht ist..."

This is a colloquial German proverb used to indicate the most possible understanding for something but without agreement.

Alles, was recht ist, aber das geht nun wirklich zu weit.

A similar expression may be the English "with all due respect" which more litarally also exists in German "Bei allem Respekt, ...", and is used similarly to "Alles was recht ist".

This proverb is not used in this meaning in the lyrics quoted so it may be an intended pun there.

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But the phrase (I'm not sure it qualifies as a proverb) is used in precisely that sense in the lyrics, isn't it? –  Mac Jan 20 at 13:23
    
@Mac: not sure about this... but an interpretation of Rammstein Lyrics is beyond my scope anyway ;) –  Takkat Jan 20 at 13:33

Well basically

Alles, was recht ist.

means "Everything that is fine." or "Everything that is allowed."

Alles, was mir recht ist. ("Everything that is fine for me.")

In most of the cases though it heavily depends on the context. There is also the phrase

Alles, was rechtens ist.

This for example points in the direction of what is really allowed meaning "Everything that is allowed for me (as far as law goes)."

Recht means "Law" in German that is how you can remeber this.

Concluding, as far as your songtext goes, I consider this phrase to be of a meaning equal to "Everything that is fine for (with) me." or "Everything that is allowed for me."

Hope that helps.

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Hmm. He isn't using the noun form of "recht," and the non-noun forms mean something completely different. I'm afraid I don't see how your translation makes sense in this context. I appreciate your effort though. –  Dustin Jan 20 at 4:06
    
The adjective form recht means richtig, passend, or geeignet. –  Lars Beck Jan 20 at 7:46
    
While it's true that you're giving the literal translation of the phrase, it is highly unlikely that a native German would use it in that sense. This is such a completely formalised idiomatic phrase that we don't even recognise the constituent parts anymore. Even the intonation pattern seems more or less fixed. I'd go with Thorsten's "Yeah, right". –  Mac Jan 20 at 13:46
1  
Während die Sätze 1 und 3 passen ist 2 das glatte Gegenteil dessen, was gemeint ist. Man gesteht zu, dass der andere formal im Recht sein mag, aber ...! Wenn Du beim Zoll 20€ zahlen sollst für Zigaretten, die Du im Inland für 5€ bekommst, dann sagst Du "alles was Recht ist" und beziehst Dich nicht darauf, was Dir gerade Recht ist. –  user unknown Jan 22 at 4:33

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