January 07, 2007

Philosophicae Nasalis larvatus

J Clive Matthews, aka Nosemonkey, has set forth an argument for the EU. I have heard this argument before, he is basically saying that with enough reform the EU could become something good, just as with enough plastic surgery I could become Miss World. It is true that both could happen, but neither is very likely and quite frankly the latter is more probable.

Yes it would be good if the EU was to mysteriously turn into a confederation of independent states troubling itself with only those very few matters that truly need to be sorted out at the european level, everything else being decided at the most local level possible which would generally be the individuals themselves, while the people of europe can trade freely with each other and move to where they think they would be most suited.

Mr Clive Mathews is correct that the EU is unlikely to end up a federal state, however that not because it will become confederal it is because it will be a unitary centralised one. This is the simple logic of the way that it has been accruing power.

In the vision of what the EU could be most decisions are done at the local level, this is especially true of decisions about the minutiae of life; what weights and measures can be used, whether additional measures can be used as well for clarification, the proportion of waste that should be recycled, or the curvature of bananas. But this is exactly what the EU regulates. It is from the sum of the regulations over these small matters that the EU has gains its power.

Secondly in order to reach the promised land of a localised, confederate, EU all these powers would have to be given back reversing another of the underlying principals responsible for the EU as we know it. The principal that once a power comes under EU jurisdiction it stays under EU jurisdiction.

Only by getting rid of these two assumptions about the role of the EU, that the EU deals in the minutae of life and once it starts regulating an area only it can regulate that area, are expunged from its culture can any reform towards a more localised EU be seriously contemplated. But they are what has made the EU what it is today, they are deeply rooted into it's structures. This is not something that can do done with another treaty (that is if you can get another treaty, especially one that changes the EU so radically) as this requires a change to occur throughout the culture of the bureaucracy. The problem is so deeply rooted that it cannot be removed without the complete destruction of the EU as it currently is and then beginning again from scratch. If you want to save the EU you have to destroy it.


Post a Comment

<< Home