Draghi Editorial - English Translation Missing Key Concept

By: Axel Merk | Wed, Aug 29, 2012
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The English version of ECB President Draghi's Zeit editorial explaining the new course of the ECB is missing the translation of a key phrase that is present in the German version. Notably, in discussing the development of the political union, the German version calls 'to expand the democratic participation and to include citizens more effectively in the process [of political integration]'. ("die demokratische Teilhabe auszuweiten und die Bürgerinnen und Bürger effektiver in die Prozess einzubinden.")

The English version does not make a reference to integrating citizens into the discussion, only refers to 'better anchor European processes at the national level.'

To a translator, this may just be semantics. But it goes to the core of one of the deficiencies of European policy makers: the lack of communication of policies to citizens. Draghi's editorial addresses that head on by directly communicating with the German audience. But other policy makers must see this direct criticism if there is to be hope that they get the message that they, too, must communicate better.

When have Merkel, Schäuble, Hollande, Rajoy, Monti, to name a few, taken the time to explain to their audiences as to how they see the future of Europe? They bicker with their colleagues, but don't take enough time to communicate with their constituents. It's a key reason why Europeans can't relate to European institutions. It now takes Draghi to not only impose an integration process on Europe, but also to communicate it to the public. Kudos on Draghi. Shame on other politicians for not living up to the task.


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