Unnecessary indeed

By

Paul De Grauwe, a leading European economist whose work was used as the basis for arguments for European monetary union in the 1990s the other day said this:

Sometimes I wonder: do we still need the European Union? I start to have doubts about that. It is sufficient that countries open up their economy. You don't need to do that in the context of the European Union.

Mr. De Grauwe's doubts are fully justified. The European Union — in the form it has been pushed in the last couple of decades or so — is not only unnecessary, but also dangerous.

Originally envisioned as a vehicle for the free movement of capital and labor — a commendable idea to facilitate business enterprise — the project was taken over by leftists intent on creating a superstate that would run the continent from its Brussels headquarters. In the end its manifold regulations and directives became so burdensome that business managers routinely complained that the European Union failed to provide an environment conducive to free enterprise. The defeat of the Constitution which would have enshrined this model was certainly a good outcome. How things will ultimately develop, however, remains to be seen.

In the few months since the Constitution's defeat in France and the Netherlands, we have seen an alarming tendency toward protectionism. This does not bode well for Europe's future and is certainly not going to help revive the moribund economies of its major players.

Vasko Kohlmayer   4 26 06

Paul De Grauwe, a leading European economist whose work was used as the basis for arguments for European monetary union in the 1990s the other day said this:

Sometimes I wonder: do we still need the European Union? I start to have doubts about that. It is sufficient that countries open up their economy. You don't need to do that in the context of the European Union.

Mr. De Grauwe's doubts are fully justified. The European Union — in the form it has been pushed in the last couple of decades or so — is not only unnecessary, but also dangerous.

Originally envisioned as a vehicle for the free movement of capital and labor — a commendable idea to facilitate business enterprise — the project was taken over by leftists intent on creating a superstate that would run the continent from its Brussels headquarters. In the end its manifold regulations and directives became so burdensome that business managers routinely complained that the European Union failed to provide an environment conducive to free enterprise. The defeat of the Constitution which would have enshrined this model was certainly a good outcome. How things will ultimately develop, however, remains to be seen.

In the few months since the Constitution's defeat in France and the Netherlands, we have seen an alarming tendency toward protectionism. This does not bode well for Europe's future and is certainly not going to help revive the moribund economies of its major players.

Vasko Kohlmayer   4 26 06