There are national elections today in France, Greece and Serbia, and local ones in Germany and Italy. These being very different countries, there are of course many local issues that will decide some of these races. But the overriding issue that unites all of them is a referendum on the present high-finance-friendly policies of governments throughout the continent.
This isn’t a good guy-bad guy choice. Nor, as some on the right would call it, a choice between fiscal sanity and unsustainable government spending. Nor, as some on the left would say, a choice between cruel austerity and immoral bank profits.
There’s really an awful lot of middle ground here. A lot of sensible limits on government spending, while also taking sensible steps to not only ameliorate the pain of austerity, but animate economies increasingly moribund because of overly forced austerity.
You know. Moderation. Common sense.
What’s the greatest impediment, however, to reaching this worthwhile middle ground? The divide-and-rule techniques of the radical right in Europe and, alas, in this country as well. Making the not-yet-poor see the already-poor as their enemy. Making the naive resident see the immigrant as the cause of their troubles.The game played by a greedy upper tier and their ideologically warped (and well funded) spokespeople who don’t want any sort of compromise.
The big political and economic battles today aren’t left versus right. The are left and middle versus far right. An awful lot of money here and abroad is being spent to disguise that fact. Let’s hope the beard comes off in Europe today, and in our own country this coming November.