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Liberation, France

Democracy Crippled: Economics Replaces the Separation of Powers


"This old paradigm has been swept away by the financial crisis. The last three years, with all their ups and downs and breathtaking tempo, have shown how obsolete this basic structure has become. … With nothing to counterbalance or regulate it, this new and more brutal structure now controls the others and imposes its own laws."


By Nicolas Demorand


Translated By Mary Kenney


December 7, 2011


France - Liberation - Original Article (French)

British Prime Minister David Cameron: His decision not to join with his E.U. partners in crafting a new agreement on the euro has created a fateful split.

BBC NEWS VIDEO: British Prime Minister David Cameron's decision to go it alone by rejecting new E.U. agreement, Dec. 9, 00:03:59RealVideo

Executive, legislative, judiciary: political philosophy teaches that a democratic state is based on the separation of these three powers, but also on the counterbalancing dynamic that each exerts on the other two, with no one power watching itself. This old paradigm has been swept away by the financial crisis. The last three years, with all their ups and downs and breathtaking tempo, have shown how obsolete this basic structure has become.


Nicolas Sarkozy and Angela Merkel, with great pomp and self-satisfaction, announce their projects for Europe. Just a few hours later, a rating agency makes them look ridiculous by placing the eurozone under a negative credit watch. The founding structure of democracy is now being replaced with a new and more brutal economic one. With nothing to counterbalance or regulate it, this now controls the others and imposes its own laws.    



Never has the balance of strengths and weaknesses been so apparent; never has political power seemed so crippled. The principal issue in the presidential campaign will be to mask the political turmoil and sheer impossibility of any effective political action. The three years that have just elapsed have seen firefighters chasing fires, but always too late. Commentators will focus on the beauty of the diplomatic movement and the skill of diplomatic compromise. But it will all be played out, today and tomorrow, in the management of the social consequences of the crisis.


Senior columnist John Authers and editor Lionel Barber discuss how the

new treaty to enforce changes to the E.U.'s fiscal rules could be enforced

without Britain on board, whether it's enough for to appease markets,

and where Cameron's stand leaves Britian.




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