Two Centuries of Local Autonomy
One of the last Prussian Reforms during the Napoleonic Era was the constitution of local autonomy for the cities. This was to prove lasting importance as the cities carried out the deficit-based employment policies of the early thirties and also had to carry the burden of a democratic reconstitution of Germany after the Dictatorship. After the crushing defeat at Napoleon’s hands, likewise the reconstitution of Prussia fell to the cities. Today, the same constellation of problems can be found on different stages. Europe, as it is growing together, faces a democracy deficit which ultimately will have to be addressed by the cities. The countries in transition and undergoing transformation likewise will have to find arenas for democratic decision making, which likely will be at the municipal level. And last but not the least, the United States of America face a quagmire at the federal level which ultimately will have to be resolved at the state or local level.