“Europe is the peace that came after the disaster of war. Europe is the pardon between French and Germans. Europe is the return to freedom of Greece, Spain and Portugal. Europe is the fall of the Berlin Wall. Europe is the end of communism. Europe is the welfare state, it is democracy,” Esteban González Pons on the 60th anniversary of the Treaties of Rome
Fine words I’m sure but lacking both substance and honesty. I contend that the EU does not represent any of the fine principles he describes. His speech does however dredge up the fundamental question of what kind of world do we Europeans want to live in..
Peace: It’s incredibly hard to argue that the EU has been a bulwark for peace when conflicts all over the world have either been started by EU member states and their allies or exacerbated by them. Peace in Europe is the greatest of all hypocrisies.
Freedom: Hypocrisy! Europe (principally Germany with the tacit agreement of the other member states) has reduced freedom to a bargaining tool for blackmailing countries in financial difficulties (caused largely by EU member states) to repay so-called debt. Europe has been a very cruel experience for Ireland, Greece, Spain and Portugal all of which, to a greater or lesser extent have been subject to EU fraud and extortion.
Berlin wall: What utter nonsense. There are many factors which go some way to explaining why the wall came down at that particular time in history with the overwhelming reasons involving a weakening communist bloc and progressive pressures within USSR. It had little to do with the EU.
Welfare State: Farcical! The UN is investigating the UK government for “grave and systemic violations” of human rights for its treatment of the sick and disabled. It is not the EU that brought this to the world’s attention as it would or should have done if the EU cared one iota for universal welfare. The EU turned a blind eye because the EU actively promotes austerity whilst funnelling billions of tax dollars to billionaire corporations so, on balance, his statement is frankly a lie.
Democracy: Whether a Brexiteer or a Remainer, the squabbling has made a mockery of democracy. The people of the UK exercised their democratic right and voted to leave the EU. Rather than accepting the democratic process and working towards equitable agreements all around, most of those who disagree with the results of the democratic process are being actively and aggressively obstructive. What is the point? We may as well live under tyranny where the loudest shouting and the heaviest jackboots rule.
I argue that a great many UK citizens who voted against remaining in the EU were not driven by xenophobia but against the principles of dictatorship which the regime has become. Regardless of whether there was a hidden agenda when the Treaty of Rome was signed in 1957, as so many have suggested, what we see today is something entirely different. It is not an equal platform where the weakest are elevated through the exercise of common strength and mutual support, it is an elitist club where global corporations and their trade deals take precedence over the wellbeing and security of individual European citizens. It is an extortion racket where the weakest are exploited and the rest have been forced onto a treadmill of compliance through fear of being labelled racist or neo-fascist, many more still are bombarded with relentless propaganda to the point where they are unable to see the truth for the distortion of reality they are relentlessly being fed. What is abundantly clear is that the EU is not a force for unification, not in the sense of bringing people of disparate nationalities together, but more a means for controlling and protecting markets.
Those citizens of the UK who voted against remaining in the EU rejected what the organisation has become and what it stands for. They did not reject the people of Europe.
Next: Brexit, February 2017