Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Integrate or disintegrate

Mark Mazower perfectly summarises the dilemmas facing the EU in the wake of the Euro crisis:
In short, unless there is a plan for integration that prioritises recovery and growth, what we may end up with is not a Europe that is a "democratic federation of nation states" at all but a gradual unwinding of the entire integration process. A prospect to make some Eurosceptics rejoice, no doubt, but replete with dangers of its own. 
Europeans thus have a tough choice to make: the historic preservation of their national institutions, or greater co-operation and derogation of powers. If, as the Dutch elections suggested last month, they would still mostly opt for the latter then the real argument becomes about the nature of the new institutions, their powers and the philosophy behind them.
"The philosophy behind them"... at last someone is pointing out that it is not so much the institutional arrangements that matters, but the model of political economy that underpins them. A completely coherent fiscal union dedicated to doing precisely the wrong thing is not going to help.

But then he finishes on a most peculiar note
What a sad commentary on the state of British diplomacy that what David Cameron's government thinks about this remains entirely irrelevant.
No, surely what he should have written is, 'thank god that the state of British diplomacy means that what David Cameron's government thinks about this remains entirely irrelevant'. Letting Austerity Osborne and the Etonians loose on Greece? Spare them that, please.


Anton Deque said...

What is a European? What is Europe? No geographic boundary apparently exists. Also, how do such varied peoples have their histories enveloped in one big country called Europe without much of the essential character of that history being written out? It seems that the goal of trading and financial harmonisation must lead to Magnolia politics. Etonians be damned! But what of Europe run by Guardian types? There are worse forms of dictatorship than Common Sense, but any is bad enough.

The Plump said...

The Guardianista dictatorship. Now would be a dystopia.