Thursday, November 24, 2011

Technocratic Governments in Europe?

Italy and Greece have new Governments. Their previous democratically elected Prime Ministers were replaced by technocrats; economists and bankers to be more precise.

One of course would think how "democratically" elected was Mr. Berlusconi, a man that seemed to be more like an oligarch. He run the country as he pleased, he was a part time politician as he admitted himself while focusing on his romances and bunga-bunga parties. He manipulated the public opinion since he owned most of the country's media!

He is replaced by Mr. Mario Monti, a pro-European Economist much hailed in E.U. and Europe. Mr. Papandreou, after a disastrous handling of the crisis in Greece, was replaced by Mr. Lucas Papademos a former Vice-President of the European Central Bank. He has the approval of many E.U. Officials and other European leaders and politicians.

What I find amazingly peculiar is the fact that now we have unelected Prime Ministers, not politicians but technocrats, replacing the leaders that the people chose to lead them. What does this say about Democracy in Europe? The Governments that the people vote in their Parliaments can not deliver in securing the country's interests while solving and addressing all the issues that the public is facing. Perhaps then we are in a much deeper crisis and not just a financial one, but political, social and moral as well.

Do we need the Technocrats to come and save us or do we need a reality check on how Democracy is being implemented, if we have a real Democracy at all in our Continent? Our national politicians have all let us down and the promotion of unelected Technocrats in the driving seat of our countries, is seen as the solution to our political system's shortfalls. I do not doubt that they are going to do a good job, but who do they represent?

Will they represent the people, the citizens of Italy and Greece and their interests and what are their agendas, influences and motivations? We do not know much about them, in which circles they belong or why they were chosen to lead their countries. They both seem to be well known in the European power brokers' circles and it makes sense to pick them to solve a pan European problem. But why our national Governments were unable all those years to deal with those issues and make the necessary reforms gradually in order to better their countries.

Perhaps our democratic system is corrupt beyond repair, or so dysfunctional that in order to heal it, we need not so democratic solutions. What does the future hold for Europe and its states? Will one by one be forced to replace their democratically elected Governments with Technocratic ones and who will control those new Governments? Perhaps we are experiencing a political experiment in Europe. If it succeeds in Greece and Italy, more countries will follow until these new type of Governments will be the reality. Are Technocrats better than politicians? How can we control or have a say on what the Technocratic Government will be doing, since we won't be voting for it and they won't be answerable to us anymore. 

It is no lie that we needed change, we needed a political reboot in our Continent. But I was hoping it would take place in a democratic way, it would be approved and supported by the citizens. We had a political elite established in most of our countries since WW2 and they got used in being in power so much, that staying there was more important than working for the betterment of Europe.

Will this new style of Government work? Only time will tell. But to me this is a very sad development. We have a new type of Government to save us from the evils of Democracy! It is scary if you think about it. I was hoping for a democratic solution, I was hoping to see the European Parliament empowered and in constant cooperation with the national Parliaments working for shaping a new Europe.

In the Arab countries they are fighting for more Democracy, transparency and freedom. In Europe we are giving away our Democracy, transparency and social justice. We are trying to assist the Arab countries in their battles to achieve Democracy. Who is going to help us then in our battles for transparency and social equality?