In the comments on Fjordman’s recent post, mistkerl asked some questions about the EU:
I know that overall, the EU is despised. But, as an outsider, I see two things:
1. The combined EU economies are substantially better now than when I lived here in the pre-EU early 90s. This is clearly a result of their Euro currency. My US dollar isn’t worth crapola anymore in Europe! 2. Even though countries are in the EU, they all retain their individuality. There is no question when you are in Germany, everything is still very German. The same for France, etc…
So, given those 2 observations, is the EU really as oppressive and terrible as we generally perceive? What am I missing? Arguably, I’m such a cynic that I don’t think non-elites really have any influence on politics anyways so maybe that’s why I am not seeing it.
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I kind of relate it to what it must have been like way back in the day. Take Germany for example, which was (I think) something like 300 separate mini-states before being brought together [by Otto Von Bismarck].
Each of those states had self identities and all had the same fears of homogenizing, but I think history shows that a combined Germany is far stronger, and the individual customs of each mini state are still alive and well.
So, in my mind, even if there was some vast conspiracy to combine Canada, USA, and Mexico into one larger group, I still don’t see the danger in it. People are still vastly loyal to their individual states (ahem! Texans) even when those states are part of a greater whole.
I mean, its not like the US isn’t already overrun by immigrants from both countries. How could it get any worse?
I just see it as the next iteration and larger group. The eventual far future goal is one united world right? Then we can go conquer other planets and start the segregation process all over, 🙂 (Sorry, this is my homage to the NWO conspiracy where this AMERO conspiracy originally developed, although ironically it appealed to the other side of the political sphere then!)
Archonix — who is British — responded as follows:
First, the EU economies are not substantially better than they were in the 90s. Many are at the same level, others are worse. Ask any Italian what he thinks of the economy at the moment and if you’re lucky he’ll just shout at you for a few hours. The only reason your dollars don’t seem to go far any more is because the dollar has fallen significantly, not because the euro has risen. The euro is placing a massive inflationary burden on the EU economies, which no longer have the mechanism of altering interest rates in order t control inflation. Further, there is no mechanism for national debt transfer, as exists in the US, which places further inflationary pressure on individual member states. This pressure is compounded by inflation in members states that are net recipients of EU funding (Spain and Ireland as examples) who are able to cut taxes to miniscule amounts because they’re getting funded by the other EU member states. All of this is combining to produce an inflationary economy with no control mechanism. Unemployment has risen constantly within the euro zone since the euro was introduced, and productivity has fallen just as constantly. National debts are going up, taxes are rising, GDP is falling.
Secondly, it is interesting that you mention Bismarck’s German unification, as it has bearings which I will get to in a moment. First, let me say that much of what you perceived is, again, an illusion. Individual nations are slowly losing their national customs as laws and regulations are ‘unified’ across the continent. National institutions might appear unchanged, which might then present an image that the nations in question are unchanged, but this is simply a signature of how the EU functions. Those national institutions have been hollowed out from the inside and replaced with EU functionaries and apparatchiks. The EU bypasses national legislatures and operates through the implementation of an ever more powerful unelected bureaucracy of civil servants and managers. Thus normality appears to remain. However, in my country, the traditional and ancient freedoms of common law are being slowly abrogated by the implementation of bureaucratic systems. Habeas corpus is being erased, the right to travel within the borders of this country are being erased, the freedom of the individual is being erased. In fact, this country no longer officially exists. Look at any EU-approved map and you’ll notice that, while the UK is marked clearly, its constituent parts are not England, Ireland Scotland and Wales, but Scotland, Wales, northern Ireland, The North West, The North East, The Midlands, the south east, the south west and greater London. My country is gone.
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Your revolutionary war was started with the cry of “no taxation without representation”. Well, I am definitely no longer represented in the government that runs my country. In all but a few areas, the laws that are implemented through Parliament are defined by the EU. The elected government of this country now only has the freedom to legislate in a few areas; foreign policy, health and education being the main. Agriculture and environmental policy, transport, internal affairs of various sorts, prisons policy, immigration, these are all legislated by the EU, with barely a nod to the national legislature. MPs will get perhaps 12 hours to examine a draft law in these areas before putting it to vote — which will generally be ignored anyway — and these drafts will often run to 30 pages. An MP will get several of these drafts every single day, dozens in a week. And this is just the legislation that is passed through Parliament. The EU can simply define legislation as an administrative or technical regulation and bypass the elected legislature entirely.
All of this from an organisation that was sold to us on a lie. The EEC was put across as a free trade zone. I never voted for the creation of a supranational, unaccountable government that does not submit to the will of the people via an election. In fact, I did not vote at all. I have never had a say on whether I want my country — which no longer exists — to be a part of this. The EU has no mandate and never has.
Now, Germany is a more apt comparison than you might realise. Bismarck conceived the unification of Germany as a means to prevent the German kingdoms from fighting each other. He began to implement it when those same kingdoms were on the verge of signing an unprecedented peace treaty; his manipulations caused a war that gave him the pretext to simply conquer those other kingdoms, or trick them in to treaties that irrevocably tied them to his Imperial Germany.
He began with a customs union.
The EU has not resorted to wars to implement itself, but it began in the same way, and with the same aims. The EU was conceived as a means to prevent another war like the Great War, but it was interrupted by the Second World War. By the close of that war the political landscape had so changed that the concept of the EU was obsolete before the first treaties were even signed. It is consequently an institution looking for a role, and it has since found that role by re-positioning itself as a counter to American ‘hegemony’, a second pole against the US’s presence in the world as a super-power. This is in itself a foolish proposition; historically it is more foolish still, because history demonstrates that it will cause more trouble than its worth.
Bismarck’s united Germany did become peaceful for a while, but that peace didn’t last long. The internal fractures of the new Imperial Germany soon started to cause strife and resentment amongst the people of that country. A solution was found in the redirection of the national angst toward external enemies. The eventual result was the great war. The result of that was World War 2.
The ‘unification’ of the nations of Europe is the same thing on a much larger scale. It is perhaps no coincidence that incidents of anti-Americanism have risen sharply since the signing of Maastricht.
The EU has placed itself in opposition to the United States. It has inveigled itself so deeply in to the lives of its ‘citizens’, so deeply embedded itself in to every aspect of life, that everything a person does is regulated in some way by the EU. As examples; In order to install an electrical socket in my kitchen I must comply with at least eleven separate regulations. Some are sensible, governing the type of wire to use and the general direction that wire should go in. Others are nonsense; in order to comply I have to place my sockets a certain distance from the floor no matter what their purpose. EU regulations now mandate by law the kind of taps I’m allowed to use in my bathroom. They mandate the height of my door, the height of the gap between the door and the ceiling and the angle of my stairs, to millimetre precisions.
Every day I break about 30 laws whilst engaged in what were previously lawful activities. Most of these laws are EU-inspired regulations prescribing the details of how activities are to be carried out. My computer does not comply with regulations on lead content, electrical output or anything else, despite being perfectly safe. The lights in my house will soon be made illegal.
None of this was done with the consent of Parliament. None was done with the consent of the people of this nation. These are just little things, little examples of how the EU interferes in every-day life. They are a tiny fraction of the laws and regulations that are implemented by the EU; thousands each year, each one limiting the freedom of people just that little bit more. Sooner or later the sheer volume of regulations will start to affect people culturally. Our culture is slowly being eroded and destroyed by this vile institution, our national identities removed, our freedoms erased, and the end result? Inevitably, it will be war, but before that will be a morass of dull, lifeless existence for millions of people shorn of everything that once made their nations great.
What price the ability to spend the same coin in 20 countries?
As a Bloody Yank, I lack standing to comment on these issues. European readers, both inside and outside the EU, are invited to add their two centimes’ worth.
Apropos of the EU, everyone should read Fjordman’s latest: Towards a Totalitarian Europe.