Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Draghi is asked about the rise of popularity of Syriza in Greece, and Podemos in Spain.

He says he's not sure exactly what these parties want from the ECB.

Well, here Draghi has it exaclty right! Maybe they should start to formulate what they think the ECB should do.

by rz on Thu Dec 4th, 2014 at 09:59:50 AM EST
Massive buy-up and forgiveness of sovereign debt would be a good starting point. Is that really not in the Syriza program?

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Thu Dec 4th, 2014 at 10:12:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
A central bank is not a political function...

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Dec 4th, 2014 at 10:25:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Let me translate that:

There are some (very important) political decisions that we want citizens to be cut off from. We then declare them "technical": being in the central bank, the TTIP, what we eat, etc. This is in essence the idea of a technocracy - use a pseudo-scientific but really authoritarian argument to remove some decisions from the public debate. They are "technical decisions": nothing to see or think about, move on. Leave it to the "experts".

Incidentally some people have a problem in principle with this. Others just fumble because it is not their "technocracy", as they also know "better" and want equally remove some of these discussions from the public sphere (but in another direction).

It is actually depressing that so many people dislike the current affairs not because they are an attack on democracy but because they follow a line that they do not like (but they would be fine with a different variant of technocracy).

What Podemos or Syriza are doing is reframing this as a political problem, not a technical problem. And rightfully so. Of course one has to wonder that if Podemos or Syriza were themselves power they would not do the same thing (but in a different direction - it is not that the hard-left is a paradigm of respect for liberal-democratic values...), though that is not a real concern as of now.

by cagatacos on Thu Dec 4th, 2014 at 06:18:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The problem is that "liberal-democratic values" has always been a smoke screen. Since the 19th century the "liberal" agenda has always been about wresting control over policy from landed elites in favor of business interests and the 'democratic' part was very much an ideal, rather than a practicality. The widening of the voting franchise progressed in lock step with the confidence of the elites that they could 'manage' the 'democracy' that emerged in their own interests and they have been remarkably successful in that endeavor.

Now that there is no real internal or external opposition to their rule it has devolved into governmental capture by elites and the implementation of their program of looting. "Liberal-democratic values" are increasingly a joke played on the 99% - who are just starting to catch on, very belatedly.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Dec 8th, 2014 at 12:27:02 AM EST
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