Switzerland: Far from Flawless, but still a Unique Country – An Interview with Claudio Grass
Our friend Claudio Grass has discussed Switzerland in these pages before, and on one of these occasions we added some background information on country’s truly unique political system (see “The People Against the Establishment” for the details). People are generally aware that direct democracy in the form of frequent referendums is a major characteristic of the Swiss system, but how many people know that the country’s executive is essentially modeled after the system established in the city states of ancient Greece?
The Sphinx observatory on Mt. Jungfraujoch in the awe-inspiring Swiss alps. Photo credit: Jungfraubahnen
Claudio was recently interviewed by Jeff Deist of the Mises Institute on what we can learn from Switzerland, which despite its undeniable flaws, continues to stand out among European nations states as a beacon of liberty. As the introduction at the Mises Institute notes, political life in Switzerland differentiates itself by its strongly pronounced degree of subsidiarity and the major limitations it places on central political power structures at the federal level:
Switzerland is no libertarian paradise. It has bureaucrats and a wayward central bank. But it remains an astonishing modern example of the principles of federalism and subsidiarity in action. In fact, it exemplifies Lew Rockwell’s daydream: nobody much knows or cares who is president. Its federal administrative state demonstrates humility instead of hubris. And virtually all political decisions, from taxes to welfare to immigration, are decided locally. Claudio Grass joins Jeff Deist to discuss what libertarians can learn from Switzerland, and how neutrality in two disastrous European wars shapes Swiss DNA today.
…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…