12 October 2012DER HAUPTSTADTBRIEF BERLIΝ
With acronyms like EFSF or ESM and mantras that preach that there are no alternatives, such as “If the euro fails, Europe fails”, politicians are undermining Europe’s historical democracy. And they won’t pull through that way, writes German author Hans Magnus Enzensberger.
Crisis? What crisis? The cafes, bistros, and the beer gardens are overflowing, German airports are bustling with tourists, and one hears talk of record exports and falling unemployment. The summits scaled weekly by the politicians and the confused disputes of the experts provoke yawns. It all seems to be played out in a rhetorical No Man's Land full of incomprehensible language rules that have nothing to do with the everyday routines of the world we live in.
What’s least noted is that the countries of Europe for a long time are no longer ruled by democratically legitimate institutions but by the horde of abbreviations that have usurped them. Where it's going is spelled out by EFSF, ESM, ECB, EBA and IMF. Only experts can puzzle out these acronyms.
Not just that: the who, what and how of decisions in the European Commission and the Euro Group are revealed to insiders only. What all these “facilities” have in common is that they are not mentioned in any Constitution anywhere in the world, and that no voter has the slightest say in their decisions.