Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Display:
Because unlike your Democrats, PES parties recognise (and use) a blocking minority.

There are various possible explanations for this, ranging from them being centre-left as opposed to the Democrats' centre-right, to blocking minorities being more difficult to form and the political system therefore not having evolved a consensus against using them.

But for the present purpose, the reason does not matter: The simple, and quite striking, reality is that throughout this crisis, Eurozone PES parties have been far more willing to use blocking minorities than governing majorities to push back against right-wing economic extremism. The contrast is remarkable. At least to anybody who has been paying attention.

It would help you form a cogent argument if you had passing acquaintance with recent political history on the continent you are attempting to describe.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 04:30:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
How could I have overlooked the brilliant way the SD opposition has blocked austerity measures in ... um .. all those countries I don't know about?
by rootless2 on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 09:17:23 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Why, then, should we reward them with our vote?

To err is of course human. But to mess things up spectacularly, we need an elite — Yanis Varoufakis
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 09:20:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Votes are not rewards. They are political acts that should be done for advantage.

I vote for a somewhat weak local Democrat because I know that the voters in my locality would pick a much worse right winger if she failed. That's not a reward, it's self-preservation.

by rootless2 on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 10:06:43 AM EST
[ Parent ]
If you want the local party to replace the bums with someone better you don't vote for the bums.

Because Spain doesn't have open primaries, the only way sympathisers can pressure the parties is at the general election. Even acquaintances who are members of PSOE admit that, as members, they have little influence on who the cadres and candidates will end up being.

And, in this case, it's beginning to sound as if ZP and his entourage believe that the severity of the crisis, the economic environment they have had to act in, and the pressures they received from the EU to enact certain policies exonerate them so even after the worst election result since democracy was restored in 1977 the PSOE leadership intends to steer the party into the next Congress. I'm beginning to suspect ZP wants to directly influence the choice of his successor even though he didn't even run for a seat in parliament this time around.

To err is of course human. But to mess things up spectacularly, we need an elite — Yanis Varoufakis

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 10:12:13 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Of course a vote is a reward. Do ut des. And politicians all over the world do know that they have to reward their voters or at least fake a reward.

It seems to be a special pathology of the american democrats that they don't want to recognize that. Say what you want about machine politicians, but they did understand that.

(The american right tends to call Obama a Chicago machine politician. I always sigh: "If only!")

by IM on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 10:27:11 AM EST
[ Parent ]
What a peculiar claim to be made in the middle of a discussion of how PSOE lost an election by chosing Mrs. Merkel over their own voters.

The problem is not that politicians are playing the game wrong, however, it is that activists are. The program advanced by NoLesVotes is to "punish" the main parties by assisting the PP to take power.  

by rootless2 on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 12:13:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The main parties are punished by voting for the minor parties, in part because the absence of open primaries prevent people from "primarying" the socialists-in-name-only. That the right wing won is seen as an acceptable side effect of trying to vote out the bums on your own side.

But, also, in countries with adequate PR systems the left gets their seat share whether it's split 50-0 or 30-20, so there's no problem whatsoever with getting 15% of the vote.

To err is of course human. But to mess things up spectacularly, we need an elite — Yanis Varoufakis

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 12:52:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Do you think it worked? To me, and obviously I may be wrong, you still have a duopoly, but the worse side is now in power - and as you noted the PSOE leadership is excusing it own performance as due to exigencies.
by rootless2 on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 12:58:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The PSOE leadership continue to work at lowering the chances I'll vote for them next time around by being self-righteous about being bastards.

And your point is?

To err is of course human. But to mess things up spectacularly, we need an elite — Yanis Varoufakis

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 07:21:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
>The problem is not that politicians are playing the game wrong, however, it is that activists are.<

That is an assertion you should try to prove.

Do you also think the electoral losses of 2010(democrats) and 2008 and 2006 (republicans) can be blamed on activists playing the game wrong? I would blame the economy, at least regarding 2010 and 2008.

The conservative irish government lost power too; I and conventional wisdom would explain that with the economic conditions. What is your explanation, Fianna fail activists staying at home?  

by IM on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 03:21:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think your views are extremely coloured by experience with majority first past the post system. In a proportional system, it's very possible for a small party to achieve more influence by being in opposition than being in government.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
by Starvid on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 02:01:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
How could I have overlooked the brilliant way the SD opposition has blocked austerity measures in ...

The French PS shot down a constitutional suicide pact not dissimilar to the Spanish one not so long ago. The Spanish PSOE rammed one through while in government. With procedural legerdemain that one could have called a coup d'etat if one had been inclined to be legalistic about it. So tell me again how voting for PES parties helps shape the institutional landscape in the left's favour? 'Cause I really want to know.

um .. all those countries I don't know about?

Not my fault you haven't been paying attention.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 01:35:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Oh you mean the "golden rule" of Sarkozy which was designed to be an election gimmick. How brave of them. Oddly, the US Democrats just defeated a similar rule without needing to be in opposition. Perhaps the difference is that neither France nor the US at the time were truly worried about bond markets and did not need to go as far as Spain:

. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/074c8362-d55f-11e0-bd7e-00144feab49a.html#ixzz1eMtHqIfg

Others, however, regard the amendment as an empty gesture, since it allows for debt and deficit limits to be exceeded in times of economic recession or emergency situations that threaten "the financial situation or the economic or social sustainability of the state"

by rootless2 on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 02:06:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
<sigh> I expect you've got some evidence for that appreciation?
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 02:15:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
This appreciation:

rootless2:

the "golden rule" of Sarkozy which was designed to be an election gimmick
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 02:16:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
IS that controversial?

PARIS -- President Nicolas Sarkozy has used the crisis over the euro and his relationship with the German chancellor, Angela Merkel, to set a potential political trap for the Socialist opposition less than nine months before the French presidential election.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/23/world/europe/23france.html

The measure is facing strong opposition from Socialists who say it's a publicity stunt in the lead-up to the 2012 presidential election.

http://www.france24.com/en/20110727-golden-rule-sarkozy-socialist-party-roma-controversial-trees-can al-midi?page=7

François Hollande et Martine Aubry répondent que la ficelle est un peu grosse et qu'ils ne se laisseront pas entraîner dans «une opération de communication».

http://www.liberation.fr/politiques/01012351213-la-regle-d-or-le-joker-de-sarkozy
by rootless2 on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 03:45:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It was all the same not "designed to be an election gimmick". It was and is requested by Angela Merkel. Sarkozy's main policy effort for months now has been to stay closely hitched up to Germany whatever happens. He would surely have liked to make electoral capital out of doing the Congress show at Versailles, but he would also very seriously have wished to comply with the German request. What really put the kibosh on it was the PS victory in the elections to the Senate.

Sore losers, the Socialists.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 04:08:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
So you think the Socialists are not telling the truth?
by rootless2 on Tue Nov 22nd, 2011 at 11:24:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I think you're not reading what I'm saying. Which doesn't surprise me.

You know, if you're sincere, it's odd how you know every trick in the troll book.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Tue Nov 22nd, 2011 at 11:43:17 AM EST
[ Parent ]
This is what you wrote:
<sigh> I expect you've got some evidence for that appreciation?

I then cited the NYTimes, the Socialist Party, and French TV.  If you don't like that evidence, I don't care.

by rootless2 on Tue Nov 22nd, 2011 at 07:08:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thread too narrow, so new top-level comment here.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Nov 23rd, 2011 at 02:08:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
rootless2:
Oddly, the US Democrats just defeated a similar rule without needing to be in opposition.

How brave of them.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 02:18:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The PSOE passed one while in government.

And now they're not.

Funny how that works.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 02:36:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The PP passed one while in opposition¹.
And now they're in government.

Funny how that works.

¹The collaboration of PP was necessary to achieve the needed quorum for constitutional amendments.

res humą m'és alič

by Antoni Jaume on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 02:42:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Quite.

One non-trivial difference: The constitutional amendment in question is core PP policy.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Mon Nov 21st, 2011 at 02:44:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]

Display:

Occasional Series