VW electrical problem

I have had a sudden failure of the following functions: low beams, directionals, heater fans and wipers. Is there a central switch or fuse that links these functions? 2000 new beetle.

Your owner’s manual can probably answer this question better than we can.

A reasonable person would assume so. However there is nothing in the manual regarding this issue. The fuses all appear to be ok. I am assuming that there is a common relay or switch that controls all these. At first I thought that it was the switch controlling the steering column controls (signals, dimmer, cruise control, but there are other items out as well.

Yes, the ignition switch is most likely the culprit.
Very common issue on VW’s, Audi, and Porsche cars to have all sorts of seemingly unrelated power issues and the cure is always the ignition switch.

Common part across those cars, too.