A company in Germany that was pro-US had no more power to impeach and replace Schroeder as the anti-war coalition movement in the UK had to remove Blair and put in a more pliant person
Heh, I wish you'd tell that to the people in the US who think that our politicians dance on little strings pulled by corporations.
Democracy, as cute a concept as it might be doesn't work like that, and it's disenginious to suggest it does.
You're looking at this far, far too narrowly. For one thing, I'm not talking about impeachment or anything of that sort. Indeed, that's ridiculous. However, even Bush is moved by opinion polls and research. More to the point, the legislators who support him are up for re-election every two years and campaign contribution checks come through all the time, one way or another. There are very distinct ways to send a message even to a head of government if you are a business.
Perhaps it's trite to say that they can just get another leader, although in the long run, they can. However, the bigger point is that the reason Chirac, et al. were able to make these moves is that they already had the backing of public opinion. If there was a shift of even a relatively small minority, however, Chirac may not become unelected, but his actions might have been curtailed enough to have the US at the very least, not look unfavorably on French contracts, for instance. I am certain that mere lukewarm neutrality on France's would have avoided this issue, as in the scheme of things, while they did not support the US directly, they are still strategic allies.
Yes, the anti-war people couldn't throw out Blair, but they certainly had an effect on Blair's position of trying to restrain what was viewed to be some unilaterial facets of the Bush administration's foreign policy. Any sort of concerted repudiation of the Chirac position from inside of France would have had an effect. So while it is possible on an individual level to commiserate with French businesses, as a whole they didn't do anything at all to prevent this.
Edited by Uncle Sid, 10 December 2003 - 02:12 PM.