Nationalism Flanders flag protest Tijl Vercaemer/Flickr

Le paradoxe des politiques identitaires

BARCELONE – Les élections législatives au Royaume-Uni ont fourni un exemple sur la manière dont la question de l'identité nationale remodèle paysage politique de l'Europe. Le Parti National écossais, qui incarne une version de gauche des politiques identitaires, a décimé le parti travailliste écossais, ce qui a permis aux Conservateurs d'obtenir la majorité absolue au Parlement. Le gouvernement du Premier ministre David Cameron (qui s'est concentré sur l'identité britannique, plutôt que sur le destin commun du Royaume-Uni avec l'Europe), doit bientôt organiser un référendum sur l'adhésion prolongée du Royaume-Uni à l'Union européenne, avec des conséquences imprévisibles.

Durant des décennies, le débat politique en Europe s'est axé en grande partie sur les politiques et les institutions économiques. Les conservateurs ont plaidé pour une économie axée sur le secteur privé, des marchés sans entraves, une baisse des impôts, une réduction des dépenses publiques et des biens publics limités. Les libéraux et les sociaux-démocrates ont favorisé une économie de la propriété privé, des marchés, de l'intégration européenne et une augmentation du commerce, modérée par des impôts de redistribution et des transferts substantiels, un fort filet de sécurité sociale et une propriété publique dans des domaines comme les infrastructures et les finances.

Dans ce système bipolaire, les partis divergent sur des nuances de politique économique, mais ont globalement approuvé les valeurs démocratiques, le projet européen et la nécessité de s'adapter pour gérer la mondialisation, plutôt que de la rejeter en bloc. Mais avec le succès croissant des appels à l'identité et face au regain du nationalisme ethnique ou religieux, cela est en train de changer. Les fantômes du début et du milieu du XXème siècle sont-ils de retour ?

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