Haggling over the EU leadership

ds. If there had been a need for further proof that the EU is an undemocratic entity, proof has now been delivered with the recent haggling over the leadership of the EU. Once again, the top posts in the EU were distributed behind closed doors. With the proposal to appoint Ursula von der Leyen of Germany as the new President of the Commission, David-Maria Sassoli of Italy as President of Parliament, Josep Borrel of Spain as Foreign Affairs Commissioner and Christine Lagarde of France as the new head of the ECB, “only old and predominantly large EU countries were given a chance,” “the Neue Zürcher Zeitung stated on 4 July on its front page. A demonstration of power by the heads of government.

Macron’s poker

It looks as if Macron was able to assert his interests across the board: “Macron’s poker worked,” a title on the third page of the “Neue Zürcher Zeitung”. The French President celebrates the compromise of the allocation of posts in Brussels as a success. He spoke of an “extremely positive result”. Some of Macron’s ideals have come true with the new appointments to the top posts.
He praised Ursula von der Leyen enthusiastically for her “competence, courage, determination and commitment to Franco-German friendship”. In the German Defence Minister, he sees “support for his ideas, not least with a view to intensified pan-European defence cooperation and Franco-German armament projects”.
With the nomination of Christine Lagarde, the French President has achieved another coup. Although her name was not in the front row for the ECB’s top position, she had long been considered a joker for a European top position in Paris.

A victory for the investment bankers?

Macron, who came into politics as an investment banker and partner of Roth­schild, first became François Hollande’s advisor on economic and financial policy before joining Manuel Valls’ cabinet under President Hollande in 2014 as Economics Minister. When he started 2017 as a presidential candidate with the party En Marche, which he founded, he was able to collect donations in the tens of millions within a short time.
Macron pleads for common institutions in the euro zone. He calls for the establishment of a joint budget of several hundred billion euros, legitimised by the EU Parliament and administered by a Minister of Economy and Finance, which would turn the EU into a transfer union and communitise France’s debt. Furthermore, together with Merkel, he calls for a powerful European army.  

Direct democracy is not desired

On the other hand, Macron rejects the introduction of direct democracy in the form of popular initiatives and the resulting referendums - one of the core demands of the Yellow Vests. On 5 February the French freelance journalist Diana Johnstone wrote in Current Concerns: “Power lies with a technocracy in the service of ‘the Markets’, meaning the power of finance capital. This technocracy aspires to remake human society, our own societies and those all over the planet, in the interests of a certain capitalism. It uses economic sanctions, overwhelming propaganda and military force (NATO) in a “globalisation” project that shapes people’s lives without their consent. Macron is the very embodiment of this system. He was chosen by that famous elite to carry through the measures dictated by “the Markets”, enforced by the European Union.”
Isn’t it so that this first needs to be contemplated?     •

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