TOM GILL, who blogs at writes on the impact the EU "rescue" is having on workers across Europe. Under the guise of intervention, lies a profound assault on popular sovereignty.

You may have heard about the plan agreed in June to give €100 billion (£80bn) to Spanish banks. The "rescue" plan for Spanish bankers, who speculated their way to ruin, is being financed by all eurozone member states - that is by all the citizens of the eurozone. Now, this includes Spaniards. And they, that is the country's 99 per cent, are paying for it through massive cuts to welfare, regressive tax rises and the near-25 per cent unemployment rate. But to be fair the plan wouldn't have seen the light of day if the Spanish government hadn't been pushing for it. And the Spanish government was elected last November by the Spanish people, even if many of those who put a cross on their ballot papers by Mariano Rajoy's Popular Party are clearly regretting it now.

However, look at things from the point of view of an Italian. They are set to pay €19bn (£15bn) towards this huge cheque to foreign speculators. But Italians didn't get any loans from Spanish banks. They didn't elect the Spanish government. Come to think of it they didn't even elect their own government. Prime Minister Mario Monti's regime replaced the Silvio Berlusconi government - which was elected, whatever anybody may think of it - in November 2011. Monti, a former European Commissioner, and ministers like Corrado Passero, the former CEO of Italy's largest high-street bank Intesa Sanpaolo, were imposed upon the Italian people. The Italians were denied fresh polls after the media magnate's fall and so had no way of influencing who ruled them next nor the policies of their new rulers.

Many of those policies were in fact drafted in a letter sent in August 2011 to Rome by another foreign banker, the Frenchman Jean-Claude Trichet, chief of the European Central Bank. The Italians' solidarity with Iberian financiers represents the lion's share of the €26bn (£21bn) of cuts that Monti unveiled in July.

These budget cuts will take away yet more jobs and slash education, health and other local services. And they follow labour reforms that have weakened protections against the sack as well as rises in taxes hitting the majority and measures that make people work longer for reduced pensions.

An unelected prime minister in one country robbing his people to pay foreign bankers? Yes, you may have heard that before. It used to happen in faraway places where generals and dictators ruled, unhindered by democratic institutions. Then it arrived in Europe, in Greece, where former central banker Lucas Papademos and his technocrats plundered the Greek people to pay foreign creditors. This Spanish swindle takes the banking lobby's assault on popular sovereignty to a whole new level.