Whether it's Monti in Italy or Cowen in Ireland, the pattern is the same: foreigners, and mostly unelected foreigners at that, make demands and the elected officials force them through. For going directly against the will of the people, Monti and Cowen and Wilders et al get wiped out at election time, garnering pathetic shares of the vote.
They know this is what will happen, but they do it regardless.
What position does that leave democracy in? When the people state, in as clear a fashion as is possible, "you cannot do this thing" and the ruler does it anyway.
I'm reminded of Franco, after he took power in Spain. He recognised the debts taken on by the Republican government against his wishes. However, this had no tinge of hypocrisy to it, as Franco was a sworn enemy of democracy and had consistently held the position that the Caudillo had total personal power to decide on what debts were sovereign or not.
The whole case for representative democracy as an acceptable alternative to direct democracy is that fear of not winning re-election will act as a deterrent to going contrary to the popular will.
The problem with that theory is that we've just done a bunch of controlled experiments in the recent crisis, and the results did not match the theory's prediction. Ergo, the theory would appear to be wrong.
Certainly, brutal austerity, in the last century of capitalism has in most cases been carried out by fascist military junta governments who have a specific, openly anti-democratic agenda. This is the first time we have seen a wave of austerian attacks carried out by a bunch of governments who do not openly oppose democracy, and all of whom, in fact, claim to be democrats.
So what are the implications for democracy in the future, now that we know that, when push comes to shove, the will of the people is not a relevant factor in the decision-making process?