Sunday, May 29, 2005

The Thing

EU President Jean-Claude Juncker says a rejection by French voters of the European constitution would not mean its rejection by Europe. 'Non' does not mean no. "The European process does not come to a halt today." Europolitix reports:

"It may be in France that the no camp has won but if they were to be asked to produce a new text they would be incapable of doing that," he said on Sunday night.  I am still very much in doubt when I look at this very mixed response in France. If we were to add up all the votes of those who wanted ‘more Europe’ as a yes then I think that we would have had a yes vote. It is therefore impossible to renegotiate Europe under those conditions."

Leader of the European Parliament’s largest centre-right political bloc, Hans-Gert Poettering urged EU leaders to keep the constitution on track at a June 16 Brussels summit. “In the end European heads of state and government will have to evaluate the overall result of the ratification process and will have to examine all possibilities on whether and in which way the constitution, or at least important parts of it, can still become legal reality,” he said.

Samizdata notes that even a second rejection by the Dutch would not prevent the draft European constitution (a document Tim Hames in the London Times called "a cross between the Berlin telephone directory and the prophecies of Nostradamus") from marching onward in some form.

the EU Referendum blog reports that it has read a document which explains that Non will not actually mean No:

In short, the authors conclude that, in the event of one or both countries voting "no", the ratification process should be neither suspended nor abandoned. They assert that all member states have expressed a commitment to proceed with ratification by virtue of Declaration 30, appended to the Constitutional Treaty. Member states cannot unilaterally or collectively decide to change the ratification process.

Thus, member states which have not already ratified should continue with the process whence, once 20 members have done so, the matter should be referred to the European Council.

In the meantime, the authors caution that "the European Union must not remain paralysed". Rather, they say, "it must continue and intensify its efforts to relaunch its policies, even by implementing in advance, where possible, the provisions of the Treaty that do not meet with open opposition".

Thus, the considered response in the event of a rejection of the constitution should be "full steam ahead". Member states should implement it even faster than they are doing already.

Very helpful. I wish I could be equally helpful in return on this question:

So what, precisely, do we have to do to stop this thing?

Juncker himself put his finger on the key problem. "It may be in France that the no camp has won but if they were to be asked to produce a new text they would be incapable of doing that." Despite the French rejection of the proposed Constitution, there is no institutional equivalent of the Brussels bureaucracy advocating an alternative EU vision or the vision of no EU at all. In other words, the European 'process' remains a one-party show and the French rejection has no more significance than Kim Il Sung's failure to get a certain percentage of votes. Interesting but irrelevant if he is the only candidate.

One axiom from the Watergate years was that it was "the coverup that gets you". In this case, it is not the rejection by the French voters that is most significant but the failure of the rejection to have any significance at all. The cavalier dismissal of the French vote describes the 'process' for what it is: a project in the hands of an elite. The real challenge for Europeans, especially Eastern Europeans and the British, is to articulate an alternative vision for the Continent. The European vision needs a second party in order to make up a debate.

45 Comments:

Blogger Michael McCanles said...

If a "no" vote means nothing, then a "yes" equally means nothing: I take that to be another version of W's concluding remarks. That is, if the only vote that counts is a "yes" vote, then the voting process is not only a sham, but an open, palpable, declared sham, and therefore one that cannot be dodged because now overtly and publicly declared to be so.

So it isn't just a matter of the whole process being a maneuver in behalf of a bureaucratic elite, as W. puts it. It is that, of course, but the declaration that a "no" vote is meaningless is a challenge hurled into the teeth of the undeclared European countries as to just how far their populations are willing to go actively to attack and tear down this elite.

W. is right on this score: with nothing to put in its place, the bureauracy you've already got is going to be the one you're going to get.

What this elite is saying is that the only way in which its ramming through its agenda despite "no" votes can be stopped is if these countries affirmatively, using whatever leverage it takes, throw the bureaucracies out intp the street and their clothes and suitcases after them.

Does France have the guts to to this? Do other European countries have the guts to do this? We'll see, but I bet not.

If these countries have allowed a bureaucracy to exist so far all these years up to the point that the bureaucracy thinks it can get away with something like a coup d'etat, the bureaucracy is betting that they don't have the will do the necessary .

Sic semper tyrannis.

5/29/2005 07:27:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

So far, what's being created in Europe is not a democracy. It is more like what China has: a one party state.

The US victory in the cold war is in danger of being jerimandered out of existance.

This is the second half of the reason for the sheer urgency of W. Bush's state of the Union message on freedom and democracy.

And I think this also helps to explain the recentralization that Putin is trying to undertake in Russia.

5/29/2005 07:45:00 PM  
Blogger PresbyPoet said...

The genius of American governance has been that it kept bureaucracy to a minimum. As long as you keep power, resources and accountability in the same place, you need little bureaucracy.

My take on the true origin of the beast is the Income tax, it gave an incentive to complexity.

The problem is how to kill the hydra now it has come to life. Perhaps we need to better understand its dangerous parasitic nature. I see Europe is much farther down the path to complete loss of function, as is California, & NASA.

5/29/2005 08:01:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

There is no democratic history in Europe. Aristocracy and Monarchs are their heritage.
The reason they do not appreciate current US policy us that the Europeans do not appreciate Liberty as much as they profess a desire for Stability. So 20th century, so conservative. Fools that believe government specialists can solve societies challenges better than the people themselves.
Security of lifestyle is the demand of the Old Europeans and the policies they settled on have just about killed their Golden Goose

5/29/2005 08:02:00 PM  
Blogger Orbit Rain said...

"We the people..."

vs. the

"We the bureaucrati..."

crowd...always someone who thinks his plan is so much more brilliant than *your* pidly dimented and deranged ideas...

...however it falls out those who overtax markets, stifle the means of production, and redistribute wealth will pay a prices in wealth for their holier-than-thou usurpation of property.

...socialists just don't get it...

5/29/2005 08:03:00 PM  
Blogger zeppenwolf said...

"It may be in France that the no camp has won but if they were to be asked to produce a new text they would be incapable of doing that."

I'm sorry you guys, but can someone tell me just what the heck that means exactly?

5/29/2005 08:15:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

zep
I think it means that there is no other option the opponents can point to as alternative. No plan could pass muster and achieve 50% approval, across the continent.

5/29/2005 08:32:00 PM  
Blogger The Nutter said...

Michael uses the phrase "coup d'etat". Extreme? No more so than the Euro elite's stated intention to disgregard the will of the voters.

The last time Europe was under stable, unified rule it was preceded by the slaughter of a million Gauls. I don't suppose the French have a vague sense of deja vu...?

5/29/2005 08:33:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Chirac, the first President since DeGaulle to loose a referendum in France, DeGaulle had the honor to resign. Chirac is no DeGaulle.
Now the question is whether Schroeder will last out the year in the Rhineland. Let's hope not

5/29/2005 08:38:00 PM  
Blogger hank_F_M said...

I read parts of the thing a while back.

It is so cumbersome it has a twenty-year shelf life. There will need to be so many amendments changing provisions that really should be legislation that the political process will break down. Of course if the EU staff just treats it as an Icon and otherwise ignores it, it could remain on the books for a much longer time.

The provisions that govern governmental process are a minor portion of the document.

The Charter of Human rights isn’t. Any second rate lawyer with the power of the EU bejhind could make a plausible case that violating human rights is really compling with the charter.

If uses the phrase “the constitution shall not” is used over and over The constitution is a piece of paper (well a ream or two). It doesn’t do any thing. My understanding is this phrase has no history in European law that would govern what it means. It is not obvious if the EU, or any one, is prevented from violating human rights.

While if the EU is to function in the long run it needs some sort of a “Constitution” but this thing would only promote European unity by getting every one totally irate with Burseles.

5/29/2005 08:48:00 PM  
Blogger jakita said...

It's too bad more Europeans don't take a greater and more scholarly interest in the United States and its government. There are important concepts to be learned from our relatively successful governmental structures--the main ones being the separation of powers and federalism.

Maybe the blogosphere will give more Europeans contact with American political ideas.

I always took for granted that the EU was a worthwhile institution until I read some posts on Samizdata.net. It's amazing what exposure to fresh ideas can do to promote new thoughts. Europeans need some new thoughts.

5/29/2005 09:00:00 PM  
Blogger ledger said...

It appears to me that Chirac's speech is saying that despite the no vote on the European Constitution he will simply ignore the voters will and somehow ratify the Constitution. After all it Chirac's political crown jewel that is now at stake. Thesaur's has translated Chirac's remarks:

[Thesaur's Ramblings]


[Chirac]:

My dear compatriots of the cities, overseas and abroad,

France has democratically expressed itself. A majority of you has rejected the European Constitution. It is your sovereign decision. I take note of it.

In spite of this, our interests and our ambitions are deeply related to Europe. France, a founding member of the Union remains, naturally, in the Union. I make a point of saying to you, to our European partners and to all the people of Europe that France will continue to maintain it's place in the regard to its engagements. I will take care of it.

Processes of ratification are currently underway all of the Convention countries. So far, nine countries have already decided in favor. Our other partners will express themselves in their turn. Until then, the European Union will continue to function on the basis of current treaty.

We have in front of us important deadlines. On June 16, the European Council will meet in Brussels. I will defend the position of our country there by transmitting the message of the French women and men.

But let us not deceive ourselves, the decision of France inevitably creates a difficult context for the defense of our interests in Europe. We will have to answer it by uniting around a common purpose, that of the national interest.

My dear compatriots,

During this debate, you also also expressed your concerns and your expectations. I intend to answer them by giving a new and strong impulse to official action. I will let you know in the next days of my decisions concerning the government and the priorities of it's action
.


see Thesaur's translation

5/29/2005 09:12:00 PM  
Blogger Cutler said...

Arguably, one of the most critical features of the American constitution is its simplicity. It is relatively easy to read and understand. The EU proposed a 200 page monstrosity that delves into everything from environmentalism to employment, and a host of other issues that do not describe the mechanisms of the government, but its policies. Health care, environmental policy, agricultural policy, unemployment benefits... it is all in the constitution.

This is something our constitution assumed the government it created would do, according to the will of the people. The result of the European disaster is the opposite of simplification and the hardwiring of government policy. Little is left to voter preference or chance. The primary reason is of course, the bureaucrats don't trust the people to make the right decisions.

Up until now the EU has skirted every referendum and test. Where it would fail, like monetary union, it allowed governments to opt out. This is unprecedented, and things are going to get mighty interesting depending on how Chirac handles this. If he tries to redo it, the no vote will probably only increase. I wouldn't rule out bloodshed if he tries to ignore the referendum.

5/29/2005 10:23:00 PM  
Blogger Cutler said...

It's too bad more Europeans don't take a greater and more scholarly interest in the United States and its government. There are important concepts to be learned from our relatively successful governmental structures--the main ones being the separation of powers and federalism.

Maybe the blogosphere will give more Europeans contact with American political ideas.


Unfortunately, they get such a distorted view of the United States from their elites and media that anything packaged as "American" is sure to be rejected. They'd rather fail than succeed copying us.

I always took for granted that the EU was a worthwhile institution until I read some posts on Samizdata.net. It's amazing what exposure to fresh ideas can do to promote new thoughts. Europeans need some new thoughts.

I concur. I was introduced to the EU a few years ago, through a course taught by an American Franco-phile. As a customs union that promoted free trade and pacifism it worked. This current project is a disaster in the making.

5/29/2005 10:29:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Nationalists that are also Socialists. The coming rage in Europe.
Holland is the next test of this Constitition, followed I believe, by England.
God Save the Queen

5/29/2005 10:34:00 PM  
Blogger Cutler said...

http://denbeste.nu/cd_log_entries/2003/02/Theguidingphilosphybehind.shtml

There's an old post from Stephen Den Beste talking about the guiding purposes of the EU, if anyone's interested.

5/29/2005 10:55:00 PM  
Blogger Cutler said...

A snippet of above link:

In Europe, the masses are held in contempt by the educated classes. Recently I posted a translation of an opinion piece from Le Monde, which included the following highly revealing passage:
-
The truth, the simple and foolish truth, is that we understand nothing about your war. The French masses understand nothing, which is normal. But, above, government ministers, diplomats, editorial writers, even our wise guys, they're just as astonished - and this is new.
-
The French masses understand nothing, which is normal. The masses are foolish, stupid, ignorant, lazy, and easily swayed by demagogues. Only an idiot would actually let them drive the bus, because they'd drive it off the edge of a cliff. Nations must be ruled by the elite, because they know what must be done and why. Any system which forces the elite to pander to the masses will destroy itself because the masses are slime.

5/29/2005 10:58:00 PM  
Blogger Rune said...

I’m not much of a fan of the whole EU project, the ridiculous misnamed overbloated “EU constitution”, the bureaucratic haughtiness and severe democratic deficit of the EU – to say nothing of the gigantic farm subsidisations and other economic stiffening pork projects. But even I can see that Europe has a need for something. That the time when individual European countries could wield disproportional great influence all around the world is irrevocable over.

And I do have to wonder, why so many Americans in the blog-sphere are so overjoyed by these problems for the EU. Is it from some genuine wish for a better EU for your friends in Europe – you have my best wishes, but I suspect much of it is driven rather by simple malice and a want for a weak, fragmented Europe, and not having to content with a stronger Europe able to seriously challenge US power – or perhaps merely more of this infantile obsession with the frogs I see all the time on LGF. The first LGF comment on this subject is: “europe /flush” - Yeah. I feel the love. You talk all the time of European anti-Americanism, but what I see is a virulent American anti-Europenism. You say Europeans have been brainwashed by the media into not understanding America. But by your comments on the conservative blogs you do not reveal yourself as having a more unbiased understanding of Europe.

Also many of you seem to think a weakened EU is in your interests. But have you contemplated what a world would be like 50 or 100 years from now, with a much stronger China and India both wanting to throw their new found weight around. All the trouble in Africa and the Middle East just growing bigger. etc. For all the differences between the US and Europe, they pale in comparison with those dividing the US and Asiatic countries. A world without or with an enfeebled Europe will leave you completely isolated.

5/30/2005 01:32:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

rune,
I think they just see clearly that France is not our friend.
The EU is simply another attempt to construct something capable of competing with/doing damage to, the US.
It will do neither.
The French are already trying to use the Chinese against us:
Why should we fear the Chinese more in the absence of France, than w/France allied w/China, against us.
...for whatever that's worth.

5/30/2005 02:54:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

So, that German guy that said there is no Plan B was right.
Rejection is not an option.

5/30/2005 02:56:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

PresbyPoet,
I think DC is on the verge of having such bloated staff for all the grandees, that it is no longer answerable, in any meaningful way, to the people.
Recently heard there are 1,500 support staff for the White House at present, VS 60 in Truman's day, as I recall!
How many staff does each Senator have?
Representative?
What are their budgets?
The current DC stance/response on issues of great import, like the Judiciary, and Immigration, remain completely uninformed by what the public wants, the Constitution specifies, and the nation deserves.

5/30/2005 03:10:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

NASA -
The money being WASTED on the Shuttle, and that monstrosity orbiting earth could be doing really great things throughout the Solar System and beyond.

Calif -
What can anyone (besides Arnold) say?

5/30/2005 03:19:00 AM  
Blogger Cybrludite said...

To be blunt, Rune, the reason that many of us are cheering the problems of the EU is on account of the folks pushing the whole EU Constitution acting like hostile non-beligerents since the fall of the Taliban. If they act as if they're our enemies, don't be shocked if we start to treat them as such.

5/30/2005 03:20:00 AM  
Blogger Rune said...

Dough. Don’t delude yourself. "Friend" is a romantic notion that has no place in international politics. And to tell you the truth. From here the German (and Swedish and Belgian) position re. the Iraq war looked very much worse than the French. The French said "Don’t do it. There is another way much better. And it is not in our national interest. We will oppose you." While the Germans said "Stupid warmongering Americans are evil! The military industrial complex is just out to steal the oil!" You can disagree with the French, but at least they didn’t seem to descend to the emotional stupidity and irrationality of some of the other countries which opposed you – and I see many conservative bloggers now descending to re. France. Not that I don’t understand them (the conservative bloggers). I am of two minds. I too long for those infantile political manifestations as done by European liberals, the slightly veiled threats and enemy actions Arab Islamists or pampered demonstrations of Korean youths to be met with more substantial American consequences.

For me the EU is important mainly as the political and economic help to the Baltic and Eastern European countries (I think we should let the Ukrainians and Russians in) whom will see the French “no” as an unwelcome gesture – no doubt true, the bullish new economic of Eastern Europe scares the French merde-less. As well as for the common market - which will be harmed through this French “no” since it will fairly much kill the Service Directive deader that a flat fox on M1. Moreover I fear the French voters will very soon wake up with a big hangover as they did in their last presidential election, and go into headlong flight from the political consequences of their own decision or try to understand it as a “non, we want a more socialist EU” – which we need like we need four new holes in the head.

Cybrludite:
Last week I protested the Amnesty “Gulag” stupidity. But now I have to wonder if it had so happened that Amnesty instead had compared French policy with the Nazis (which they incidentally regularly do on LGF) or something similar. Would the conservative blog-sphere have clapped its collective hands and said “good work Amnesty”? I don’t mind the bluntness. I do mind the hypocrisy. As if you in the US is above it. But there is nothing European or French exceptionalism about this. The sickness of nihilism, liberal appeasement, moral relativity and cultural self hatred that is eating Europe is also having a feast on America. And don’t you doubt it for a second.

5/30/2005 04:27:00 AM  
Blogger erp said...

It's apples and oranges to compare U.S. capitalism, individualism and freedom with EU socialism, collectivism and dependency.

Europeans have willingly traded freedom for security. A very bad trade. It's only a short hop from cradle to grave security to bondage and enslavement. Anyone who doesn't believe that should read between the lines of Chirac's remarks. Yes, he takes note that the people have spoken, but since the vote was a mere technicality, it can and will be ignored. Do the French or the Dutch for that matter have the national will to reverse the trend? Doubtful.

I think this vote will bode well for Tony Blair. The British may, like Chirac, also take note and opt out of an agreement that effectively gives away, not only their sovereign right, but their individual right, to manage their own affairs.

5/30/2005 05:04:00 AM  
Blogger Charles said...

Blair Should Grasp Opportunity with Both Hands (EU Constitution)
The Scotsman ^ | 5/30/2005 | Staff Opinion
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1413089/posts

Posted on 05/30/2005 4:54:20 AM PDT by ex-Texan


TODAY'S announcement that the French have rejected the European Constitution is seen by Tony Blair and the European establishment as a "serious problem". The fact that on Thursday the Dutch could follow suit could make life even more difficult for the Brussels bureaucrats who have staked their future and their considerable salaries on its acceptance.

Their instinct will be to persuade Mr Blair, when he assumes the rotating EU presidency on July 1, to try and save this blueprint for the future. And indeed it will be his also.

The Prime Minister believes that his place in history could be assured by persuading Britain to vote in favour of the constitution, perhaps not as good as his original ambition to persuade a sceptical UK population to join the euro, but in the wake of the French vote that would appear to be virtually impossible.

Some ingenious Labour spin doctors believe that the French "non" vote will mean the British are more likely to vote yes, but in reality yesterday's result may be a problem for Mr Blair but a resounding rejection by British citizens would be a serious embarrassment. He may now be desperate to avoid having to hold that referendum, but it might be better for him to proceed as planned.

The details of what Europe does now are complex. Only if at least six of the enlarged EU's 25 states vote no does the constitution become officially dead and if that happens there is no way back for the European Commission. If between one and five of the member states fail to ratify the treaty, the European Council of Ministers - over which Mr Blair will preside from July 1 - has to review its position.

Technically, they could ask the French, the Dutch, the British and whoever else may have declined to rubber stamp the document to reconsider, and some pro-Europeans hope that given the two-year period of grace before a final decision has to be taken in October 2006, the French could be persuaded to rethink.

By October next year - with President Chirac's occupation of the Elysse Palace coming to an ignominious end, they think the French could be persuaded to reverse the referendum result. But they are a proud race and the suggestion they should change their minds at the behest of an English Prime Minister who ignored their advice and launched a disastrous intervention in Iraq is fanciful in the extreme.

The fact is that once the French voted against the constitution, its chances of survival were nil. Mr Blair should underline this by holding a swift British referendum to make sure it is not just dead but buried.

One of the problems with Europe - ever since it started as a common market - is that neither side told the truth.

The Eurosceptic opponents invent myths about what Brussels is up to. But the closet federalists - who want a European superstate - hide their true intentions.

The people of the UK don't want a superstate and the people of Scotland will not be seduced by talk of a greater regional dimension shifting power from London to Edinburgh. SNP leader Alex Salmond may like the sound of it but the reality is it would lead to a further shift of real power from both London and Edinburgh to an unelected elite in Brussels.

Whatever the drawbacks of the current system of sovereignty we should stick with it. One senior Euro MP broke ranks and said that yesterday's vote "was not a problem but an opportunity".

It is indeed an opportunity to reverse Europe's centralising drift and to cut back on bureaucracy and to return Europe to the basic principles of free trade.

It is an opportunity that Mr Blair should grasp with both hands.

5/30/2005 05:40:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Rune
For Chirac to get beaten in the polls, to see Schroeder on the ropes and the hope for the Dutch to say No all warm my heart.
If the EU Constitution is ratified it is bad news for freedom and our allies in Europe. No good will come to Poland or Italy or any of the newly freed Republics of the East because of it.
Some of the French voted Non because of the limits on French Soveriegnty, some because of the vagueness of the Law and others because Chirac is seen as incompetent. Little matter why, the entire idea, as presented, is a step backwards from Freedom and Liberty and should be rejected. If our adversaries in International Power Politics get beat up in the mean time, that is all well and good.

5/30/2005 06:05:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

What we all should remember, Rune, is that the US is more in tune with China than the EU. That is in the real world of Trade and Debt, not paper treaties of little import. Chirac and his team push for the diminishment of NATO, the effort to counter balance our power, not enhance it for the good of all. Be careful what you wish for, the US will make it happen.
UBL, Saddam, Chirac and Schroeder all wanted, to varied degrees, confrontation with US, well they got it. The Rooster comes home to roost, and the hens find their pecking order.

5/30/2005 08:17:00 AM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Rune,
"That the time when individual European countries could wield disproportional great influence all around the world is irrevocable over."

I disagree with that; we have seen how influential France has been, in a negative sense and in the war on terror, in the attempts to come to a Palestinian-Israeli settlement.

And a general comment; this "No" vote is actually a pro-"we want more Socialism, not less" vote; the EU was seen by many on the left as a pro-capitialism step; anything pro-capitalism being the antithesis of what the left stands for.

5/30/2005 08:25:00 AM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

Europe has been socialist/Marxist for over 100 years.

They barring a revolution change will not come quickly.

5/30/2005 08:58:00 AM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

Rune,

The left is gnawing at America.

However, leftism in America is losing its steam as the results of 100 years of Euro socialism become obvious.

Hayek predicted the future of Europe.

"The Road to Serfdom"

The end will not be pretty.

========================

The Brits will vote no because they want more capitalism. The French voted no because they wanted more socialism.

I don't see how uniting these disparate trends is possible.

5/30/2005 09:10:00 AM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

Rune,

The odds of Europe seriously challenging American power is zip, nada, zero, bupkiss.

To do that they would need a vibrant economy and the will to raise armies.

Socialism prevents the first. Pacifism at any price prevents the second.

=========================

In Cuba they government put signs on the wall saying "Socialism or death". The people answer "what's the difference?"

That is the future of Europe.

Socialism and death.

5/30/2005 09:18:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

5/30/2005 09:32:00 AM  
Blogger Cutler said...

You talk all the time of European anti-Americanism, but what I see is a virulent American anti-Europenism. You say Europeans have been brainwashed by the media into not understanding America. But by your comments on the conservative blogs you do not reveal yourself as having a more unbiased understanding of Europe.

Unfortunately, I understand Europe just fine. Political union is an unneeded monstrosity with the potential of creating a non-democratic superstate. Good for neither us, nor the Europeans.

Also many of you seem to think a weakened EU is in your interests. But have you contemplated what a world would be like 50 or 100 years from now, with a much stronger China and India both wanting to throw their new found weight around. All the trouble in Africa and the Middle East just growing bigger. etc. For all the differences between the US and Europe, they pale in comparison with those dividing the US and Asiatic countries. A world without or with an enfeebled Europe will leave you completely isolated.

The Western Europeans as a bloc are no longer American allies, in the obvious absense of the USSR. Individual European countries are, but that's precisely the reason why we should be opposed to amalgating European foreign policy under one flag, that could just as easily be hostile to us as friendly. If you think the EU would necessarily be an American ally, you're dreaming.

5/30/2005 10:44:00 AM  
Blogger Cutler said...

And as for the "love" for Europe, Europe can clean up its house first. American anti-Europeanism, is a result of the infantile and irresponsible attitude on the other side of the Atlantic. If you remove the latter, the former will disapear, save anti-French sentiment.

5/30/2005 10:51:00 AM  
Blogger Ari Tai said...

Why doesn't someone offer a 10-20 page alternative? The U.S. constitution is about 11 pages. Take that document, address it's problems (remove the ambiguities), add in a sprinkling of amendments, remove any hint of "positive rights." Perhaps write another version even further to the left of the existing, and then let the people choose.

5/30/2005 10:54:00 AM  
Blogger Ed said...

Ari, I can do that for you:

"Congress shall enact no law."

There. Done.

5/30/2005 09:26:00 PM  
Blogger McClain said...

It took a singularly credible foreign threat plus a lot of persuading (see "The Federalist Papers") to forge all 13 disharmonious American States into a Union, back in the 17-hundreds.
Even then it was no sure thing, and we fought that ol' Civil War just to try and sort out all the details.
What are the EU's odds of grabbing onto some enlightened constitutional accord, even if the Angel of Perfect Democracy dangled one in front of 'em? Not good, to be sure.

5/30/2005 11:07:00 PM  
Blogger Kirk Parker said...

Ari Tai,

Why doesn't someone offer a 10-20 page alternative? The U.S. constitution is about 11 pages. Take that document, address it's problems...

What a splendid idea! For sure, Amendments I and II will cause the drafters to die of apoplexy, and the whole nefarious project will come to nought.

5/31/2005 01:35:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Our Favorite Frog Returns:
"But Mr Chirac's choice of replacement is seen as a critical signal of the government's future economic direction.
Dominique de Villepin, the loyalist interior minister, appears to be Mr Raffarin's most likely successor.
"

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ft/20050530/bs_ft/adfef596d13311d99c1d00000e2511c8

5/31/2005 05:46:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

_____HAIR_____

5/31/2005 06:14:00 AM  
Blogger fdcol63 said...

If European elites like Chirac continue to push Europeans into an EU without solid popular support, the stage will be set for a very violent and bloody European CIVIL WAR in the not-too-distant future.

At some point, basic human nature will overcome the pacifism that has been indoctrinated into present-day Europeans, and their traditional violence towards one another will re-emerge.

As the financial and cultural problems inevitably increase in Europe due to declining European birthrates, increasing immigration and birthrates by unassimilating Muslims, high unemployment, higher taxes, and decreasing wealth and standards of living, the ephemeral notions of "being European" and "doing what's best for Europe" will give way to basic self-interest and "doing what's best for me and my tribe".

We'll probably first see clashes between native Europeans and unassimilated Muslim immigrants, and then we'll see conflicts between various EU member states as each begins to resent "its" resources being usurped by other states or the EU itself.

5/31/2005 06:15:00 AM  
Blogger bioqubit said...

No does not mean no,

OR

...it depends on what your definition of what the word,is, is...

You still end up with the same thing. The inability to stick to standards that leads to...

If you don't like the rules, change them.

If we can't ratify by the rules, then change the rules so we can foist this crap on the great unwashed masses of the EU.

When will the Europeans finally see they are being led down the rosy path to the slaughterhouse...with the Muslims waiting there to finish them off.

5/31/2005 06:49:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

Europeans--by which I mean the French and sundry other Contental actors--strike me as being fundamentally politically neurotic when deprived of their ancient elite. It should be remembered that the background to all this is France's essential failure to institute the initial republican liberal principles of the Revolution in any relatively stable regime. The past two centuries has seen them time and again hysterically running off a cliff into catastrophe, occasionally sucking the world in with it. Would it be too much to simply say to them, as to the Arabs: why don't you all just calm the F down already?

For example, what is this preoccupation with preventing war when the power which started them, Germany, is defanged, and brooding in its well-earned guilt-complex? It seems rather like a neurotic manifestation of an essential aggressiveness--Nietzsche: in times of peace, the war-like man attacks himself--which could be channeled into something like simply less ideological governments, much on the model of the USA. It seems that the EU project, despite its advocates' rhetoric, require the phantasm of total nationalistic war, when in fact none of the conditions exist at present under which such a war could occur.

Economically speaking, about which I have little interest or aptitude, it's obvious that the notion that ever-increasing economic interdepedence will make war exceedingly unlikely has been decisively exploded by the events of the last century. The simple motive for such interdependence is merely the increase of wealth, and nothing more--and requires nothing more. Nor can it do any other intellectual work. That's it.

So it seems obvious that the EU is the project of certain European elite advocates, embodying the same sort of political errors which have prevented them on the Continent from producing a competent government for over a hundred years. This is the result of an ancient arrogance that only true democracy will dissipate. Unfortunately it seems that the elites are strong enough to prevent that degree of democracy from arising. Depressing.

5/31/2005 08:16:00 AM  
Blogger Ann Þø said...

fRANCE IS DOOMED

1/05/2006 09:17:00 PM  

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