Le capitalisme rhénan n'a pas dit son dernier mot

Il n'y a pas si longtemps, les Européens, notamment les Allemands, s'indignaient de l'existence de travailleurs pauvres aux USA et de l'état lamentable des services publics en Grande-Bretagne en tant que défauts inhérents au style de capitalisme brutal en vigueur dans les pays anglo-saxons. Leur préférence allait au capitalisme de type rhénan, une économie de marché qui met l'économie au service de la justice sociale.

Aussi, quand le chancelier Gerhard Schröder au début de son premier mandat a signé le manifeste Blair-Schröder - un accord avec le Premier ministre britannique Tony Blair sur une libéralisation économique - il s'est arrangé pour qu'il soit publié à Londres et qu'il ait le moins d'écho possible à Berlin. De la même manière, la "stratégie de Lisbonne" élaborée par l'UE au sujet de la libéralisation économique n'a jamais été prise réellement au sérieux par l'Allemagne, la France et la plupart des autres pays d'Europe continentale.

Comme les choses ont changé au cours des cinq dernières années ! Aujourd'hui, bien peu de gens - s'il en reste encore - font référence au modèle rhénan de capitalisme. L'économie allemande est à la traîne en Europe et presque tous les pays européens sont moins performants que la Grande-Bretagne ou les USA. Le taux de chômage est élevé et il augmente, les entreprises allemandes se délocalisent en Europe de l'Est ou en Asie, là où la main d'œuvre est bon marché. En Allemagne, c'est le début du "capitalisme à l'état pur". On ferme les entreprises rentables si les bénéfices tombent en dessous des normes internationales ; les revenus des dirigeants, y compris les primes en cas de démission ou de renvoi, atteignent des sommets.

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