Nosemonkey's EUtopia

In search of a European identity

Spotted elsewhere

Catching up on various blogs (and as part of my drive to post more frequently here, even if they are shorter pieces), a couple of interesting pieces from Cicero’s Songs – seemingly one of the few left(ish) liberal British political bloggers to have noticed the Irish Lisbon Treaty referendum result (perhaps because left(ish) liberal British political bloggers rarely seem to notice the EU – a bit of an elephant in the room, than…). In any case, both posts are well worth a read, whether you agree with them or not:

Where does the EU go from here?
“To my mind, the problem remains one of identity and legitimacy. The European Union has failed to justify, or even explain, its purpose… The EU used to define its purpose as creating ‘an ever closer union’ – in other words it had an open-ended commitment to increasing its role and the scope of its activities. The time has come for the EU to do the reverse and set the limits of its activities.”

Outvoting democracy
“As a Liberal commentary this blog believes that setting the limits to state power is a fundamental basis of freedom. The EU has been trying to change tack from ‘ever closer union’ towards more limited policy goals for some time. However the compromises embedded in the Constitutional treaty and the Lisbon treaty are simply too many and too complicated. The idea of comprehensive reform must be shelved- we can not bring either the majority of the states or the majority of the population to agreement at this point- and it is dangerous to try.

“The EU can only reconnect with the citizen if it can demonstrate that it serves a valuable purpose. Instead of the high-falutin’ words of Giscard d’Estaing’s Federalism, we should return to the practical usefulness of Functionalism.”

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