Without changing the Treaties just yet, there are possible ways the EU could revive hope and support in the European integration. This requires the European Union to address the most urgent social and economic needs, relaunch citizens’ participation and prepare to fulfill its climate change commitments.
“What, in concrete and practical terms does the independence of nations mean in the world of today, a world of the closest economic and political interdependence, which makes the destiny of all mankind is indivisible…” – Julius Braunthal, The Future of Austria: A Plea for the United States of Europe, 1943 Europe can sleep…
A spectre is haunting Europe – the spectre of nationalism. In nearly every European country they are on the move now, the little Trumps – caricatures and mini-me revenants of the 1914 Sleepwalkers. With idiotic populist catchphrases, nationalistic fantasies of sequestration, conspiracy theories and pseudo-solutions they are gathering up the votes of those overtaxed by global challenges, of the frightened, the embittered and of those too lazy to think for themselves. What is it they want? Mostly to come into power. And then? To do away with Europe.
The Eurozone has been troubled by stagnating growth and low inflation since 2013, and we still haven’t fixed the problems of high national debt across the Continent. These signs are worrying, because without a solution in the near future, the Eurozone could end up having another economic earthquake similar to or even bigger than the…
For one reason or another, the question of reforming the European treaties has become a mainstream topic in recent months amid internal and external pressures that continue to burden the European Union. From the return of border controls, to the “British Deal” or to the rising criticism towards the current state of the Union and its institutions, the word “reform” appears to be more than a mere possibility.
A political, economic and social earthquake has hit Europe, and it measures 8.9 on the Eurosceptic scale. Now more than ever, the institutions of the European Union, indeed the very concept of European integration, are under increased scrutiny. The term democratic deficit refers to a lack of accountability, a lack of free and fair elections, representation, and voter participation. It was a term used by British academic David Marquand in the late 1970’s to describe the makeup of the then-European Economic Community. His focus on the issue of democratic deficit was one of the contributing factors to the creation of a directly elected European Parliament.
Over 2300 have already died attempting to reach Europe through the Mediterranean sea so far this year, with the latest atrocity happening last weekend when 49 people suffocated to death on an overcrowded boat.
Political persecution, armed conflict and economic pressures are just some of the leading causes of fleeing. Forcibly displaced people have no other choice but to leave everything behind to pursue journeys that begin with hope, but often end in sorrow – and the six o’clock news.
These are tense times for Europe and the future of this European Union hangs on the balance. The crisis caused countless misery and the austerity path so strongly defended by the European Commission, the ECB and the IMF has failed to resolve the issues at hand. Europeans have growing doubts about the ability of the…
The Maastricht Treaty, which realized the common European currency, envisioned the Euro as a tool to bring the Continent together. The concept was flawed; its creators knew that it wouldn’t be sustainable without fiscal and political unions, which would harmonize taxes and economic policies across the Euro area. The economists admitted that it needed legislative oversight because a common currency would put the inherently unequal economic regions at odds with each other.
Yes, Europe is in trouble. But the continent needs to keep calm. Remember that the crises it is facing are more complex than ever before. There is no simple solution, nor is there a magic word that fixes everything. Resorting to populist rhetoric causes chaos. Politics is not easy, nor is it simple, especially at the time of one of the worst humanitarian crises in recent history.