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mercredi, 19 janvier 2011

Global Demos: Critical analysis of global democracies


Jure G. Vujić :


Global Demos: Crit­i­cal analy­sis of global democracies


Ex: http://www.new-antaios.net/

„Memoire-speech“ of Jure Vujic, at the inter­na­tional sci­en­tific Con­fer­ence of The Polit­i­cal sci­ence research cen­tre (Zagreb): „Euro­pean Union and Global Democ­racy“, Zagreb, May 29, 2008. Hotel Dora, Dori­jan Hall.



globalization.jpgJure Vujić,avo­cat,  diplomé de droit à la Fac­ulté de droit d’Assas ParisII, est un géopoliti­cien et écrivain franco-croate. Il est diplomé de la Haute Ecole de Guerre „Ban Josip Jelačić“ des Forces Armées Croates et de l’Academie diplo­ma­tique croate ou il donne des con­férences reg­ulières en géopoli­tique et géos­tratégie. Il est l’auteur des livres suiv­ants: „Frag­ments de la pen­sée géopoli­tique“ ( Zagreb, éditions ITG),“La Croatie et la Méditerrannée-aspects géopoli­tiques“( éditions de l’Académie diplo­ma­tique du Min­istère des Affaires Etrangères et des inté­gra­tions européennes de la République de Croatie) „Le ter­ror­isme intellectuel-Bréviaire héré­tique“ ( Zagreb, éditions Hasan­be­govic), „Place Maréchal Tito“-Mythes et réal­ités du tito­isme“ ( Zagreb, éditions Uzdan­ica), „Anam­nèses et tran­sits“ ( Zagreb-Bruxelles, éditions NSE), „Nord-Sud l’honneur du vide“ ( Zagreb-Bruxelles, éditions NSE), „Eloge de l’esquive“ ( Zagreb, éditions Ceres), „Le silence des anges– Apoc­ryphe du gen­erač Ante Gotov­ina“( Zagreb 2009.). Il est égale­ment l’auteur d’une cen­taine d’articles en philoso­phie, poli­tolo­gie, géopoli­tique et géos­tratégie. Il col­la­bore avec le Cen­tre d’Etudes Poli­tologiques de Zagreb.


The non-existent “global demos”


As an intro­duc­tion, i’d like to refer you to the title of the book by Pierre Rosan­val­lon “le peu­ple introu­vable”, the non exis­tent peo­ple, to affirm that “just as global peo­ple is non exis­tent – so is global democ­racy non-existent.” from its ancient ori­gin up to now democ­racy, as polit­i­cal order, has always been estab­lished in a lim­ited ter­ri­tory or com­mu­nity, as Greek polis was before and as national state is in the mod­ern age of lib­eral democ­racy. In the West­phalian inter­na­tional sys­tem, democ­racy exists when peo­ple group them­selves as dis­tinct nations liv­ing in dis­crete ter­ri­to­ries ruled by sov­er­eign states Lib­eral democ­ra­cies also have mul­ti­ple polit­i­cal par­ties par­tic­i­pat­ing in ‘free and fair’ com­pet­i­tive elec­tions, an inde­pen­dent mass media, edu­cated cit­i­zens, and the rule of law. Glob­al­iza­tion, how­ever, has pro­moted non-national, i.e. supra-national insti­tu­tions and com­mu­ni­ties with trans­bor­der mutual rela­tions. Glob­al­ity has tran­scended ter­ri­tory and  state sov­er­eignty. Supras­tate democ­racy of regional and transworld regimes has shown many demo­c­ra­tic deficits, as well. EU and UN are more bureau­cratic than demo­c­ra­tic insti­tu­tions. On the other hand, glob­al­iza­tion has opened greater space for demo­c­ra­tic activ­ity out­side pub­lic gov­er­nance insti­tu­tion through dif­fer­ent unof­fi­cial chan­nels, such as global mar­ket­place, global com­mu­ni­ca­tions, and global civil soci­ety.[1] Glob­al­iza­tion erodes the abil­ity of nation-states to exer­cise the effec­tive con­trol over the polit­i­cal agenda; glob­al­iza­tion elim­i­nates the social cor­rec­tives to the mar­ket econ­omy. States are los­ing their con­trol over:  finan­cial flows and transna­tional orga­ni­za­tion of pro­duc­tion, and infor­ma­tion flows,

Over the last years or so, ‘global gov­er­nance’ has emerged as a (neo-)liberal research agenda in inter­na­tional rela­tions the­ory. Global gov­er­nance refers to the way in which global affairs are man­aged, but Crit­ics argue that global gov­er­nance mech­a­nisms sup­port the neo-liberal ide­ol­ogy of glob­al­iza­tion and reduce the role of the state.

Today we see a new phe­nomen, gov­ern­ment by “Medi­acracy” as a new form of gov­ern­ment, dom­i­nated by mass media  .Spec­tacl soci­ete becomes the global spec­ta­cle soci­ety and global videosfere where the realty dis­olve in global sim­u­lakrum of Bau­drillard. Haber­mas named this fenomen „social refeudalisation“.

The global „lab­o­rat thought“.

Within this con­text and accord­ing to Haber­mas[2]. the EU should evolve towards “Euro­pean nation states” whose objec­tive is to serve as a sep­a­rate geopo­lit­i­cal block and a bal­ance vs. the Amer­i­can super­power describe by Haber­mas as a “vul­gar super­power.” Haber­mas devel­ops a con­cept of “euro– patri­o­tism,” which would later be renamed and refor­mu­lated through the polit­i­cal con­cept of “con­sti­tu­tional patri­o­tism” — a fol­low up to civil soci­ety exam­ined by Dolf Stern­berger and Han­nah Arendt. This polit­i­cal con­cept implies the revival of demo­c­ra­tic prin­ci­ples as well as post-national forms of “demo­c­ra­tic loyalty.”

How­ever, even Haber­mas’ con­cept of “con­sti­tu­tional patri­o­tism” is of a con­struc­tivist nature precisely because it endorses the idea of polit­i­cal affil­i­a­tion based on abstract eth­i­cal and con­sti­tu­tional prin­ci­ples and not rooted in the organic her­itage cou­pled with his­tor­i­cal and national expe­ri­ences of dif­fer­ent national cul­tures and tra­di­tions. Haber­mas’ con­struc­tivist thought, as well as the pre­ced­ing con­struc­tivist thought of Socrates and Rousseau, rep­re­sent the exper­i­men­tal side of post­moder­nity of a new “thought lab­o­ra­tory.” Julien Benda, very much in the foot­steps of this thought lab­o­ra­tory, dreamt of a united Europe along the lines of exclu­sively ratio­nal and mech­a­nis­tic prin­ci­ples. In the global “lab­o­ra­tory”, the trend of hybrid iden­tity, “ready­mad iden­tity” expresses the global pro­ces of „de-culturisation“.


National „Eros“ against „Global Thanatos“: search­ing post­mod­ern Appolonian



Haber­mas insisted that Euro­peans denounce and renounce on every aspect of human pas­sion. The cleav­age between “supra­na­tional rea­son” and national pas­sion is often a sub­ject of debate regard­ing the issue of the polit­i­cal con­struc­tion of Europe. Accord­ing to Joseph Wal­ter ” the national  implies the fig­ure of Eros; it is rooted in a pre-modern world and it goes directly to the heart. It manip­u­lates emo­tions and exalts the roman­tic vision of social and cre­ative organ­i­sa­tions, which are able to match the exis­ten­tial quest located in a given time­frame and space.”  Supra­na­tional, by con­trast, is a syn­onym of “civ­i­liza­tion.” It rep­re­sents the post­mod­ern fig­ure requir­ing rea­son  in neo­clas­si­cal human­ism aim­ing at demys­ti­fy­ing Eros.

By using Oswald Spen­gler, it must be pointed to the dichotomy between cul­ture and civ­i­liza­tion. Cul­ture is an organic and dif­fer­en­ti­ated social cat­e­gory and also of a local and well-defined nature. We are, how­ever, wit­ness­ing the Niet­zschean phe­nom­e­non of trans­val­u­a­tion of all val­ues, whereby glob­al­ism acquires the sta­tus of civ­i­liza­tion and is thus designed to tame the unpre­dictable and archaic ves­tigis of prim­i­tive cul­tures. We are miles away from the  dialec­tics of Apollo and from the Dionysian con­struc­tive chaos. Instead, glob­al­ism becomes part o the decon­struc­tive chaos manip­u­lat­ing peo­ples and liv­ing cul­tures as if they were made out of clay.  The absence of the Apol­lon­ian pole and fig­ures as mod­els of light­ness and mod­esty, as well as the  absence of the ecu­meni­cal nature of imperium, lead a demos to accept social frag­men­ta­tion and dis­solv­ing forces of Eros, which are melt­ing down into a uni­formed and undif­fer­en­ti­ated process o of glob­al­is­tic and con­struc­tivist demos. Haber­mas, as an arche­type of a super ratio­nal­ist man, no longer believes in his own post-nationalist visions. Along with Der­rida he empha­sizes the “power of emo­tions,” as for instance dur­ing the call for mobil­i­sa­tion against war.

In the same vein, the utopia of “con­sti­tu­tional patri­o­tism” does not con­tribute to the sta­bil­ity of Europe’s polit­i­cal iden­tity. Like­wise, cit­i­zens’ sol­i­dar­ity can­not be based solely on the prin­ci­ples of a sin­gle moral­is­tic and uni­ver­sal­is­tic belief.  With­out a com­monly defined firm eth­nic, reli­gious and cul­tural iden­tity, it is impos­si­ble to build up a strong Europe both from the inside and from the outside.

The global geo­con­struc­tivism and Demo­c­ra­tic expansionism

This opin­ion comes partly from its Enlight­en­ment lib­eral her­itage of ratio­nal­ist chal­lenge to reli­gious and com­mu­nal sol­i­dar­i­ties as ‘back­ward’. It is rein­forced pow­er­fully by the image of “bad nation­al­ism. So global democ­racy is not only a sys­tem of gov­ern­ment, it is a war against anti-democracy. Demo­c­ra­tic expan­sion­ism in the name of monoteism of mar­ket implies, in global per­spec­tive, a plan­e­tary civil war between democ­rats and anti-democrats. When the democ­rats have won, the planet will be demo­c­ra­tic: from their per­spec­tive a war of con­quest is logical.

Global ter­ri­tory is being for­mat­ted by regional and inter­na­tional pow­ers into sec­tors such as “dis­obe­di­ent coun­tries” – war machin­ery zones, “amiss countries-rogues states” – para-governmental zones and “emerg­ing mar­kets” – global finan­cial machin­ery and those which R. Cooper enti­tled “pre­his­toric chaotic zones” in which post­mod­ern pow­ers are obliged to inter­vene to estab­lish peace and sta­bil­ity. Such exper­i­men­tal geo­con­struc­tivism encoun­ters cer­tain reli­gious, national, eth­ni­cal or other forms of resis­tance due to its mechanistic-constructivistic nature which does not con­sider organic-historical con­tin­u­ums and the cat­e­gories of time and space.

As gen­eral wis­dom has it, democ­racy requires a demos, a group of indi­vid­u­als who have enough in com­mon to want to and to be able to decide col­lec­tively about their own affairs. there is no Euro­pean or global demos but only sep­a­rate national demoi. This is a pre­con­di­tion for what rep­re­sen­ta­tive democ­racy is all about, accept­ing to be in a minor­ity one day, expect­ing to be part of a major­ity another. National sov­er­eignty must be defended not as a reac­tionary reflex but as the ulti­mate guar­an­tee of democ­racy itself.

The abstract and con­struc­tivist sep­a­ra­tion between demos and eth­nos does not allow the process of sin­gling out iden­tity  which would at the same time enve­lope both the national and com­mu­ni­tar­ian iden­tity and which would enable the growth of post-nationalist  polit­i­cal cul­tures in Europe. This iden­tity would com­bine Herder’s culture-oriented d con­cept of national iden­tity  and Renan’s   civic and polit­i­cal con­cept of  national  iden­tity anchored in a “daily plebiscite.”  The entire his­tory of Europe demon­strates that Europe has only been able to affirm itself by reac­tive means i.e. by the “exter­nal enemy.” In some peri­ods this atti­tude of flam­ing “national Eros” per­mit­ted the defence of iden­tity of Europe. The reac­tu­al­i­sa­tion of Gumilev  con­cept of “pas­sion­ar­ity” is nec­es­sary to explained and pro­mote the vital energy and power of euro­pean demo­c­ra­tic and pop­u­lar  soul  in thee cur­rent state of biro­crat­i­cal Europe wich  described as deep struc­tural inertia.

Hor­i­zon­tal demoi-cracy and ver­ti­cal brusselisation

The legacy of the Euro­pean Eros is still alive toady, albeit in a latent form and fac­ing the growth and dom­i­na­tion of the liberal-capitalist global “Thanatos,” which in the wake of cul­tural and polit­i­cal uni­for­mity is caus­ing poverty and cre­at­ing cleav­ages between the South and the North, as well as cre­at­ing global pol­lu­tion and giv­ing birth to the cul­ture of death at plan­e­tary level. In an epoch when real eco­log­i­cal cat­a­stro­phes have become a real threat, when poverty and the dis­ap­pear­ance of rooted cul­tures and nations is under way, the preser­va­tion of “national and regional Eros” could have a role of a post– national maieu­tics in the for­ma­tion of the Euro­pean supra­na­tional iden­tity which would con­tain and encom­pass diverse Euro­pean “demos” (with­out uni­formed fusion) in order to pro­tect itself against the metas­ta­sis of the lib­eral and cap­i­tal­ist “Thanatos,”. Given the fact that in our mythol­ogy Eros remains a flip side of Thanatos, it is nec­es­sary to argue that the non-existent and fic­ti­tious global demos, designed for the for­ma­tion of demos and demoi-cracy, as e new matrix of the neo-imperial thought, must be for­mu­lated, accord­ing to Nico­laidis, along hor­i­zon­tal divi­sions of respon­si­bil­ity and sov­er­eignty of states and in stark oppo­si­tion to the ver­ti­cal “brus­seli­sa­tion” of nations-states. Such Euro­pean “demo-krateo” would be rooted in com­mon cul­tural iden­tity, mutual respect, peace­ful con­fronta­tion, and divi­sion of dif­fer­ent identities.

From the­o­log­i­cal state to global post-democracy

The cre­ation of the mod­ern world is based on sub­sti­tut­ing one type of foun­da­tion for another, mov­ing from a tran­scen­dent, magical-theological foun­da­tion to a ratio­nal, con­struc­tivist, imma­nent one.: Dispite the pro­ces of sec­u­lar­i­sa­tion of pol­i­tics,   the “reli­gious for­mula” – defined as the power of attrac­tion of “The divine One” or “The Immemo­r­ial One” – con­tin­ues to serve, in var­i­ous dis­guises, as a for­mal model. Lib­eral democracy’s [3]. Gauchet says that : “Three “lib­eral idols” – “progress”, “nation” and “sci­ence”, main­tain this “tran­si­tional con­cur­rence of oppo­sites”. But these three idols are based on beliefs, extend­ing the form of reli­gious belief with­out real­is­ing it. So this “happy coin­ci­dence” has a “hid­den dimen­sion that robs its agents of a cru­cial part of the his­tory they are liv­ing”: “The two sides of the coin are opposed, but at the same time, one side is shaped by the other – the reli­gious One”. the “cri­sis of lib­er­al­ism” is inevitable, as “the new idols will very quickly be hit by dis­be­lief ”: “this will be the fright­ful expe­ri­ence of the 20th century”

Niet­zsche is the first to proph­esy liberalism’s cri­sis: “What I relate is the his­tory of the next two cen­turies”, he wrote. Despite accel­er­at­ing the dethe­ol­o­gi­sa­tion of west­ern thought by pro­claim­ing that God is dead and shat­ter­ing the lib­eral idols by mak­ing him­self an apos­tle of inte­gral rel­a­tivism, he remains trou­bled by the “reli­gious for­mula”. “By dint of pos­i­tive espousal of the thirst for power and the eter­nal return, one still finds, after com­plete destruc­tura­tion, […] some­thing like The One and some­thing like a cos­mos” .Berg­son, Husserl and Hei­deg­ger would not escape this nos­tal­gia for pre-rational authen­tic­ity.
The arrival of the “organ­i­sa­tion age” lead­ing to the advent of a “world with­out mas­ters”. impe­ri­al­ist enter­prises are just “nar­cis­sis­tic con­struc­tions”, sym­bolic strate­gies to deal with the prob­lems of national iden­tity and col­lec­tive anx­i­ety. Marx called this lib­eral phas of capitalism’s “orgias­tic age”. The sep­a­ra­tion of civil soci­ety and State becomes inevitable: soci­eties, torn apart by the strug­gle of the vested inter­ests organ­is­ing them­selves against the State. This “dethe­ol­o­gi­sa­tion of his­tory”  is borne out not only in Sorel’s his­tor­i­cal cat­a­strophism but also in the cri­sis of tra­di­tion as an idea, the over­val­u­a­tion of an abso­lutised present ‚or again, by Tön­nies and Durkheim’s the­ory on the dis­ap­pear­ance of com­mu­nity ties in favour of con­trac­tual ones.
The turn of the XX. cen­tury State cer­tainly finds its learned the­o­rists in Jellinek, Esmein, Hau­riou or Carré de Mal­berg, who recog­nise the real­i­sa­tion of the mod­ern polit­i­cal order in the abstract, imper­sonal power of legislatorial-administrative struc­tures: the real sov­er­eignty lies with the for­mal insti­tu­tions of the State machin­ery and the civil ser­vice that assures its con­ti­nu­ity and effi­ciency. On the hori­zon of this “return of the enti­tled indi­vid­ual” is the out­line of a new indi­vid­u­al­ism (depicted by Ibsen, Georges Palante, Henry Michel), a “lib­er­tar­ian stance” that does not flow into any kind of col­lec­tive, and dras­ti­cally vio­lates the prin­ci­ple of “The One”. Glob­al­ism pro­motes sin­gle word model of con­struc­tivis­ti­cal unity ” ; unity of power, unity of the seen and unseen, unity of the social order, con­ti­nu­ity of the his­tor­i­cal order[4] .This pro­ces of cul­tural, social and polit­i­cal uni­formi­sa­tion called Désen­chante­ment du monde, in which the fas­ci­na­tion with unity was linked with reli­gious belief only in cer­tain of its belated forms, attrib­uted to con­t­a­m­i­na­tion of the uni­fy­ing ethos of logos. “

The con­tem­po­rary thought con­fronted a quite new sit­u­a­tion: the near com­plete eclipse of the polit­i­cal, as a mul­ti­far­i­ous tra­di­tion of civic dis­course, by a new order—the pseudo-consensual man­age­ment of mass soci­ety. of apa­thetic democracies—which he later more aptly dubbed post-democracies—into sharper focus. Post-democracy des­ig­nate a state  con­ducted by demo­c­ra­tic rules, but whose appli­ca­tion is pro­gres­sively lim­ited. The Eng­lish con­ser­v­a­tive jour­nal­ist Peter Oborne  pre­sented a doc­u­men­tary of the 2005 gen­eral elec­tion, argu­ing that it had become anti-democratic because it tar­geted a num­ber of float­ing vot­ers with a nar­row agenda.

This pro­ces of degra­da­tion of democ­racy rules explains the trans­for­ma­tion of national democ­ra­ties of XX. Cen­tury buil on the model of sovre­ingn nation-states to a run­ning evo­lu­tion within the mar­ket democ­ra­cies called neolib­eral post-democracy dur­ing the 21st cen­tury. This pro­ces od democ­racy denat­u­ra­tion calls atten­tion on recog­nised democ­ra­cies that are los­ing some of their foun­da­tions do evolve toward an Aris­to­cratic regime. Our global Post-democracy [5].are char­ac­terised with: non fair rep­re­sen­ta­tive elec­tions and with the impos­si­bil­ity to get bal­anced real debates. Hereby, while thus con­tra­dict­ing plu­ral­ist assump­tions, it seems to be an accepted pre­sump­tion, that the com­mon good were some­thing to be deter­mined objec­tively and that con­flicts of inter­est were not to be han­dled within demo­c­ra­tic processes but instead within admin­is­tra­tive proceedings



Democ­racy must now not only change its insti­tu­tional form, it must also rethink its polit­i­cal subject.In this way, the euro­pean demos most to be strans­formed on respon­si­ble demoi with par­tic­u­lary vizion of world , weltan­shang of incluzive democ­racy which. con­sti­tutes the high­est form of Democ­racy since it secures the insti­tu­tional pre­con­di­tions for polit­i­cal (or direct) democ­racy, eco­nomic democ­racy, democ­racy in the social realm and eco­log­i­cal democ­racy.  More specif­i­cally, a Con­sti­tu­tion cel­e­brat­ing the EU as demoi-cracy requires three con­sec­u­tive mouves away from main­stream Con­sti­tu­tional think­ing. First from com­mon iden­tity to the shar­ing of plural iden­ti­ties; sec­ondly from a com­mu­nity of iden­tity to

a com­mu­nity of geopo­lit­i­cal  projects founded on great con­ti­nen­tal spaces; and finally from multi-level gov­er­nance to multi-centred and mul­ti­po­lar governance.

Let me fin­ish by con­grat­u­lat­ing CPI on organ­is­ing this con­fer­ence, which pro­vided a forum for exchang­ing views on a fun­da­men­tal topic such as “EU and global democracy”.


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-: Glob­al­i­sa­tion et deficit de legit­imite democ­ra­tique: faut-il souhaiter une democ­ra­tie cos­mopoli­tique?, Fran­cois Boucher, Uni­ver­site Laval, archives Phares, vol­ume 7, 2007.

- Jan-Werner Muller „Europe: Le pou­voir des sen­ti­ments: l’euro-patriotsime en ques­tion, La Republique des Idees, 2008.

–Ingolf Per­nice, Franz Mayer, „ De la con­sti­tu­tion com­posee de l’Europe“, Wal­ter Hallstein-Institut, Revue trimestrielle de droit europeen 36, 2000.

Review: Mar­cel Gauchet, L’Avènement de la démoc­ra­tie, Paris, Gal­li­mard, “Bib­lio­thèque des sci­ences humaines”, 2007 ; vol. I, La Révo­lu­tion mod­erne, 207 p., 18,50 € et vol. II, La Crise du libéral­isme.

[1] E. Stiglitz, La grande desil­lu­sion, Paris Fayard, 2002.


[2] J. Haber­mas, Apres l’Etat-nation, Paris Fayard, 2000.

[3] Mar­cel Gauchet, L’Avènement de la démoc­ra­tie, Paris, Gal­li­mard, “Bib­lio­thèque des sci­ences humaines”, 2007

[4] Ibid., str.52–55

[5] Post-democracy, Colin Crouch, First Edi­tion, 2004.

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