Verlorene Posten. Über Alleinherrschaft
Legislative assemblies in authoritarian systems do not serve to represent the opinion of the majority, but rather to infiltrate it. Carl Schmitt once very aptly described the team of advisers and ministerial schemers that inevitably forms around a government’s most powerful decision makers as the “anteroom” and the “corridor” to power. The dramatic potential of the inhabitants of this anteroom is huge, and the works of such playwrights ranging from Shakespeare to Schiller and Kleist to Heiner Müller are teeming with them. For kings and queens, they often represent the ruler’s last link to reality (or perhaps one should say, they obstruct it?). And the further their power of manipulation extends, the more futile the sovereign’s cause becomes as he or she grows increasingly desperate and isolated. In a scene in which she is being beleaguered by her advisers, Schiller’s Queen Elizabeth, the most forlorn and unfree of all, cries: “Oh! what a slavery is it, thus to court / The people’s favour!” Is the increase in power proportional to the increase in powerlessness? Is it possible to lose by winning? It that why the most terrible rulers act like a scalded cat? One thing is certain: even the queen in her castle is bound by the limits of her body, by the shortcomings of her mind, and by her mortality.