A French Rebellion Against Unelected Bureaucrats: “European Coup D’Etat And Rape Of Democracy”

Saturday, September 15, 2012
By Paul Martin

Wolf Richter

When the German Constitutional Court nodded with a stern smile on the ESM bailout fund and the Fiscal Union treaty, the world, or at least the politicians at the top, breathed a sigh of relief. Those two treaties, designed to keep the Eurozone duct-taped together, transfer budgetary sovereignty from elected national parliaments to unelected bureaucrats in the bowels of the European government. The Court attached a laundry list of limits and conditions—not that limits and conditions have ever stopped anything in the Eurozone—and after months of verbal warfare, the revolt of the Germans was over.

But suddenly, steam is billowing once again from the rusty pipes of the Eurozone. This time in France, where the topic has been silenced to death—and it could blow apart the whole construct.

The only time the Fiscal Union treaty bubbled up was during the presidential campaign when François Hollande vowed to “renegotiate” the text that President Nicolas Sarkozy had already signed. He won the election. The dust settled. And then, not a word. He hasn’t explained the treaty to his compatriots, hasn’t outlined the sovereignty transfer to unelected bureaucrats, hasn’t indicated which parts he’d renegotiate. Nothing. Nor has he renegotiated one iota. Even during his speech last Sunday, he didn’t mention it. It no longer existed. Yet, on October 2, parliament is scheduled to ratify the exact treaty that Sarkozy had signed.

“European coup d’état and rape of democracy,” howled Marine Le Pen, president of the rightwing National Front, and third in the presidential election, at a press conference on Friday. She’d be “the tip of the spear” against the treaty, she said and called for a referendum. A dreadful word in the French political lexicon. No politician would ever forget the debacle of 2005. In parliament, the European Constitution passed with 93% of the votes. But in the subsequent referendum, the people, who loved their sovereignty, killed it by a margin of 55% to 45%.

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