Friday, October 28, 2011

German court blocks parliamentary committee from approving EFSF disbursements

Der Spiegel has a rather shattering report which may be read in full from here.

There were mixed versions of what authority the German parliamentary lower house had in fact given Merkel even before Wednesday's meeting, this latest news must sew even more confusion into already heavily muddied waters.

The article concludes with these very worrying paragraphs seen from a democratic standpoint:

'The Bundestag Cannot Be Replaced'

But the SPD members are contesting the law. "The Bundestag cannot be replaced by a nine-member committee on such important issues," Schulz told SPIEGEL ONLINE. Schulz argues that, at a minimum, the Bundestag's budget committee should be included in all decisions.

The politicians have based their complaint on expertise provided by the Bundestag's own research service, which advised that the special panel transfers responsibility to a few and hinders the participation and shaping of policy by all members of parliament.

On Wednesday, the Bundestag tasked the committee, whose meetings are closed to the public and confidential, with a supervisory role for the billions of euros in German taxpayer money that are being deployed by the EFSF. It includes members of all of the German political parties represented in parliament and includes an equal number of politicians representing the parties in government and those in the opposition.

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