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Issue 2, 1979 Expand all abstracts

Mark Deweerdt

Nicole Delruelle-Vosswinkel

    In the postwar history of the Dutch-language daily press in Belgium, the late fifties, marked by a trend !towards concentration, and the latter part of the seventies, notorious by the bankrupties of several newspapers, stand out as eras of turbulence. It is two particularly significant events occurring during the latter period, i.c. the 1976 insolvency of the prestigeous «Standaard» papers and that of «Volksgazet» two years later, which this article focuses upon. In his analysis of causes and suggested/chosen solutions, the author highlights the political rather than the economic dimension of the events and their aftermaths, given that each of the failing newspapers - and -hence their survival - mattered politically, i.c. to the Christian Democrats and the Socialist party respectively. Central to this is the question of the measures considered/taken by the Belgian c.q. Flemish political authorities for having the newspapers. The course of events in each case is examined and the differences in terms of causal factors and measures taken/ omitted are noted. In the final analysis, the question arises as -to the relationship between certain political figures or groups on the one hand, and government agencies, which both «Volksgazet» and particularly the «Standaard» titles were heavily indebted to, on the other hand.

Luk Boone

Access_open Recente economische ontwikkelingen in Vlaanderen

Authors Guido Van Gheluwe, Carlos Lisabeth and Etienne Mange

    Since 1973 the world economy has been characterized by a relatively slow pace of expansion in output and trade, accompanied by high unemployment and strong inflationary pressures (stagflation). With this has gone an emerging energy problem, monetary instability, a growing pressure for protectionism, a declining demand for certain products and a change in the pattern of the international movement of labour and capital. In this article, the consequences of these international features for the Flemish economy are analysed. From this analysis, it has become clear that the international economic crisis has revealed more clearly the structural problems of the Flemish economy, especially in the field of economic growth, competitiveness, pattern of investments and industrial structure. This has resulted in a very high unemployment rate, which moreover will probably not disappear with an eventual improvement of theinternational economic situation: whereas the Flemish economy has gained largely from the oil based industrial expansion, it is not participating at present in the socalled third, by sofisticated technology led industrial revolution. Consequently, more and more labour-intensive activities are taken over by less developed countries, whereas some of the capital-intensive industrial sectors have to cope with a growing technological gap. To stem this unfavourable development, there is an urgent need for a powerful and planned structural policy, which must as a matter of priority force back the unemployment rate to an acceptable level. In this context, regionalisation might be a powerful instrument, as it offers to the regions the possibility of creating own solutions for their own problems.

Guido Van Gheluwe

Carlos Lisabeth

Etienne Mange

Access_open L'année économique en Wallonie

1978, des perspectives inquiétantes pour l'avenir de l'économie wallonne?

Authors Michel Quévit

    The present article endeavours to place the economic results of 1978 in the framework of the crisis that has characterized the Walloon region since two decades. The increasing vulnerability of the W alloon industrial texture does not only proceed from the intrinsic aspects of the present international crisis, but also from the fact that the Wallon regional economy is strongly dependent of the semi-manufacturing industrial sectors that made the prosperity of industrial capitalism of the end of the 19th century, but that are in decline since about two decades. Thus, the reorganization of the european steel sector, decided in 1978, has a direct effect upon economie performance in this region. In this respect, the article examines the evolution of industrial production, employment, closing-down of enterprises, as well as the investment policies of both public authorities and foreign companies duringthe year 1978.

Michel Quévit

Access_open De politieke krisissen in 1978

de krisis van het politiek vertrouwen

Authors Marc Platel

    The article describes the political crises of June and October 1978 in Belgium. For reasons connected with time and space, this contribution ends with the formation of the Vanden Boeynants transition-government, although even with the formation of the Martens-cabinet in April 1979the problems are not yet solved. The formation of this cabinet has been a long-drawn effort, hampered by substantial obstacles, that have been present since June 1978: the difficulties to elaborate both a crisis-management-policy and a consensus concerning a new constitution. Moreover, all this remains overshadowed by fear and distrust from the other political parties towards de Flemish christian-democrats, who usually succeeded in keeping their internal quarrels a really inside affair. The crisis of 1978 has proved on the other side, that the Egmont-Stuyvenberg agreement on the federalisation of Belgium was neither well-balanced nor mature.

Marc Platel

Access_open Les élections législatives du 17 décembre 1978

Analyse des résultats

Authors William Fraeys

    This article is a summary of the results of the parliamentary election held on 17th December 1978. The balloting came in the wake of an early dissolution of the legislative bodies («Chamber» and «Senate») elected in 1977. The main feature of the election is that voters largely confirmed the 1977 voting patterns and that the new bodies wilt be very similar to the former ones. The only really significant trend is the falling off of Volksunie (Flemish federalists) and the ahead movement of Flemish liberals (PVV). A second characteristic, together with an increased number of blank or spoilt ballot papers, is a slight breakthrough of new or minor lists of candidates, e.g. the Democratiec Union for Respect of Work, an anti-tax party, and a number of «green» lists. It came rather as a surprise that the Flemish Christian Democrats (CVP) lost some ground, as public opinion polls and political observers had forecast a gain. It seems that the Flemish liberal promises for tax cuts attracted CVP voters to some extent, resulting in that party not fully cashing in on the Volksunie drop. In the Walloon region the balloting was characterized by a Socialist loss, and a gain by Christian Democrats (PSC). The Chambers elected in 1978 are constituent bodies. For the time being it cannot be said whether they will be in a position to achieve pacification between the Flemish and French-speaking communities andto put an end to the long controversy concerning devolution which has been prevailing on the Belgian political scene for many years.

William Fraeys

    At the general elections in Belgium, the voter has the possibility to bring out either a vote for a party or a vote for a candidate of the party (a preferential vote). At the general elections of December 17, 1978 for the House of Representatives the voters have voted for 51,86 % by preference, whereas for the Senate 41,82 % of them have done so. The use of preferential votes is varying from one electoral district toanother: from 68,30 % in the district of Oudenaarde to 35,74 % in Bergen. There is also a difference from one political party to another. The highest percentage is obtained by the CVP-PSC (catholic party): 61,12 %; the lowest by the KPB-PCB (communist party): 27,34 %. The preferential votes individual candidates obtain differ widely, pointing out not only their popularity but also to a certain extend their political power.

Mark Deweerdt

Access_open Justitiebeleid in de jaren zeventig

Authors Luc Huyse, Lode Van Outrive, Cyriel Fynaut e.a.

    The authors discuss «judicial» policy-making in the seventies by such various actors as police authorities, local and national government, the Bar associations, legal aid agencies, the judiciary, and prison authorities. They stress the quasi-absence of reliable statistical information, of good annual reports, and of the minimum goodwill of the authorities that would open this area for social science research. They also analyse some of the major decisions that have been made by the Belgian department of justice in the last ten years.

Luc Huyse

Lode Van Outrive

Cyriel Fynaut

Lieven Dupont

Tony Peters

Jozef Smits

Access_open Bibliographie de l'année politique 1978

Authors Wladimir S. Plavsic

Wladimir S. Plavsic

Editor Res Publica