The Corner

‘To Save the Euro, Democracy Is Being Corrupted’

Cheerleaders for post-democracy such as the New York Times, Barack Obama, The Economist and David Cameron may think that, when it comes to the euro, Germany’s democracy should count for little, and its constitution for less, but there are signs that even Germany’s elite may be beginning to disagree. EU Referendum has a brief summary here:

The crunch now comes with Karlsruhe [the German Constitutional Court] wanting European treaties to be discussed as widely as possible in Parliament, with less haste, so that parliamentarians can reflect on key decisions. The Chancellor [Merkel], on the other hand, does not want a growing debate at home. Rather, she wants a free hand in negotiations in Europe.

At stake, therefore, is the very essence of democracy, with Handelsblatt remarking that, in order to save the euro, democracy is being corrupted. Picking up on the Schäuble [Germany’s finance minister] interview in Spiegel, the business daily is asserting that Germany is creeping closer to the point where a referendum will be needed before any further integration can go ahead.

Furthermore, [EU Commission President] Barroso’s ambitions are beginning to attract hostility from politicians in Germany. “The debt crisis will be used by bureaucrats in Brussels to force a new level of centralism,” says Frank Schaeffler, the financial spokesman for the FDP parliamentary group, noting that the “European superstate” lacked public acceptance.

Klaus-Peter Willsch of Merkel’s CDU complains that, “Without any legitimacy, we have transformed the EU into a structure that we have never wanted”. The ESM has “cemented the road to a debt union”, doing exactly the opposite of what the peoples were promised with the introduction of the euro, he says…

Note those words: “without any legitimacy.” That’s the key point that Obama, Cameron, and the others will not, dare not, address. This grotesque speculative currency was introduced without the true consent of the people—primarily the Germans—who would be expected, despite the denials made at the time, to pay for it. That’s the fact that’s not going away.

And how are the polls these days? 

…[A] poll of 4,000 people shows 78 percent of Germans and 65 percent of French wanting Greece to quit the eurozone, with 51 percent in Spain and 49 percent in Italy also backing a Greek exit.

On the other hand, an Ifop-Fiducial survey had more Germans favouring departure from the euro area than those in France, Italy and Spain. Some 39 percent of Germans would back such a move, compared with 28 percent of Italians, 26 percent of French voters and 24 percent of Spaniards

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