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And now the end is nigh...

Opinion - Anatole Kaletsky Times Online

AFTER THIS WEEK'S creation of a German government in which Angela Merkel will not even control the Finance and Foreign ministries, all three of the great European nations that have dominated the Continent's history for 2,000 years (Germany, France and Italy) are effectively leaderless. They will almost certainly remain politically paralysed at least until the French presidential election of 2007. The power vacuum now covering the whole of continental Europe is almost unprecedented, at least since the disastrous period between the two world wars.
But is the inability of German, French and Italian voters to choose effective political leaders and then to decide on clear programmes of social and economic reform or more precisely the unwillingness to do so a cause for worry? Or should we instead regard it as a natural product of the prosperous and comfortable societies that Europeans have created and simply want to preserve?
...
At the European level, the unity of the German and French electorates in rejecting liberal reforms ends Tony Blair’s hopes of leading a pro-market consensus in Europe. ...

For Europeans who are elderly or who “own” their secure unionised jobs, especially in the public sector, the lack of economic dynamism is unimportant, compared to the generosity of pensions and protection of employment rights. High unemployment, which mainly afflicts the young and non-unionised, is a small price to pay for such security.
...
The tragedy, however, is that something precious will be lost if the people of Germany, France and Italy choose the path of a slow, comfortable national decline, rather than revitalisation. What will be lost, of course, is the global dominance of the European civilisation that these three great nations largely created.

As a democrat one has to acknowledge that the ageing electorates of Germany, France and Italy are entitled to vote for political paralysis, economic decline and global irrelevance. But the inevitable eclipse of European civilisation by a brash, materialistic American or Chinese culture will be a tragedy of epic proportions.

So where does that leave Britain? I don't think there is anything wrong with the American culture he sneers at, and he also ignores the growth in Australia and India. Even Tony has realised as he ignores Europe our future would be better served linking with the Anglosphere, maybe he will even try and revitalise the Commonwealth, now there was an idea that got frittered away!

Comments

It is a Europe strategy to make the national governments irrelevent.

Region funding - which even groups cross border areas - is specifically engineered to bypass national governments. The regions look to Brussels for cash.

The Legal system is now defined by Brussels. On a weekly basis, national laws are being overturned by European law. One week Blair/Clarke (whoever, doe it matter?) makes an announcement, the next, Brussels overrules.

Then there is the Euro. Britain doesnt have the Euro - but France, Germany and Italy do.

They're just waiting till Chirac is gone, then they will hold new referenda for the Euro constitution and once the right answers are obtained, the project will be back on track.

Don't worry, it's all under control.

That Euro-Strategy takeover-thing is what I was gonna say.

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