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European Politics

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  • European Politics

    I am a US citizen and would be interested in hearing about politics from those of you who are in Europe.
    Here is an article I found interesting:

    Link: Berlusconi attacks trio's private party (France, Germany & Britain)

    It seems that the EU is having some growing pains (naturally). Or is this a grab for power? (which happens naturally also, I think. Although I hoped it wouldn't.)
    When they had advanced together to meet on common
    ground, then there was the clash of shields, of spears
    and the fury of men cased in bronze; bossed shields met
    each other and the din rose loud. Then there were
    mingled the groaning and the crowing of men killed and
    killing, and the ground ran with blood.

    Homer, The Illiad

  • #2
    Nope, I don't think it is a grab for power. Why shouldn't the three strongest economic powers have a chat? If they did this in secret it would be so much more disturbing. Interestingly it is Berlusconi who's barking loudest (and up the wrong tree!) and two middle strong countries (Poland and Spain) who chummed up with Bush before the Iraq war (and probably hoping for cookies in doing so). The smaller countries NL, Belgium, Denmark, Greece are pretty relaxed.
    Poland his historic reasons to be fidgety, in all her history he was raped again and again by her neighbours and depended on the goodwill of yet others, so it is understandable, but unfounded. Spain is eager to play an important role after she had been left aside and isolated during the long reign of Generalisimo Franco.
    But whatever, Berlusconi is trying to distract from the mess he has created at home, and abroad with a whole serioes of diplomatic bungles. The Italian high court just recently stripped him of the immunity that for long thwarted inquests into his tax history and his amalgation of media power. Remember, he is the "Randolph Hearst of Italy". Independent news is rare in Italy today. He had passed several amnesty laws and immunity rules of which HE and his cronies, and only they profitted! He even challenged the independence of the judges in Italy and threatened to have them replaced, because of judicial investigations against him! He and his ministers actually are openly rehabilitating Mussolini step by step! If we didn't all like Italy, her people, her wine and culture so much, many of us from France to Scandinavia, from Germany to the Czech Republic were tempted to boycott the Berlusconis Banana Republic. The Italians, we are sure, only voted him into office, because of a) a heavy media support, b) their frustration with chaotic former Christian Democrat or Socialist governments. Berlusconi is eager to use any little bit to get the pressure of his back. He even defended Putin at a conference against journalists' questions about the Human Rights situation in Chechen Republic responding even before Putin himself could say a word! Now who needs friends desperately, I ask you?
    I suspect he was making a bid for the leadership of the 10 new countries that will join the EC now. But they'll see through it.
    Maybe even George B. asked him to disturb Europe's unification progress, all's possible! Yes, of course Europe's growing together is painful at times, and all of our nations have certain worries or "Holy Cows" we don't want to give up. Yet it will work in the end. There is a historic uneasyness about these three countries getting too close, France, Germany, Britain. But at the moment it is of greatest importance to have the British people realize that their closer neighbour is the European continent 25 miles across the channel than beyond the Atlantic Sea.
    All our governments have made or will make at some point some pretty selfish moves, for sure. It is fine that people are watchful, but Berlusconi crying out is a joke. It is the strength of the Italians that they will get rid of him in time.
    The big issue will be about how many votes each country will get in our common parliament. Evenly split or by population? It still terrifies many that the most populous industrial nations could get more votes, hence rights in the various commissions. They, the big countries worry that a small nation with just a few million people could block a decision if they have just as many votes.
    This all at the best of my knowledge and, and as the last bit of computing today before I shut down at my office,
    I send thee with my best regards across the Atlantic
    L'Etranger
    Google ergo sum

    Comment


    • #3
      Thx for the info! This is exactly what I wanted. Some EU political discussion. These USA politics bore me. Just time for this quick reply myself. Got a deadline I have to meet. :?

      Thx LEtranger
      When they had advanced together to meet on common
      ground, then there was the clash of shields, of spears
      and the fury of men cased in bronze; bossed shields met
      each other and the din rose loud. Then there were
      mingled the groaning and the crowing of men killed and
      killing, and the ground ran with blood.

      Homer, The Illiad

      Comment


      • #4
        Pleasure to please you, VonWeiner!
        I am hard pressed for time myself, haven't answered the other issue yet, but will soon. Had to give a quick response to your question though.
        More in time. Sure European politics any time, and it is appropriate with our Michael belonging to us on th sides of the big pond!
        Cheerio!

        Comment


        • #5
          Ooops! I didn't log in, see what a hurry I'm in?
          Can't even edit the last message, meant to write "both" sides of the Big Pond!
          LE
          Google ergo sum

          Comment


          • #6
            I'd just like to add to this, that any EU alliances involving France Germany and Britain are expedient at best.

            Tony doesn't want to look too pro-european in front of the voters (I think people outside the UK don't realise how rabid nationalism can be here) If there is to be a two-speed europe, Britain will without a doubt be in the lower speed.
            \"It got worse. He needed something to cure himself. What? he asked. M-A 19 he answered.\"

            Comment


            • #7
              Maybe the EU could work out a system similar to what we have-

              The House of Representatives has proportional representation, the Senate has equal representation for each state. The two have to come to a consensus to get laws sent to the Pres for approval. Maybe that would work for the EU...

              Comment


              • #8
                Far from being perfect much has been done. We'll probably pass a common constitution soon. The main problems still are the many different languages and mentalities (also different legal traditions and labour unions). The different historical experiences with stronger nations like UK, Germany, France or the former Soviet system are a great challenge too, but the optimists - like myself - are convinced that these experiences and the diversity are a great strenth. The bungling of several US administrations and the attempted arm-bending by the current US gov. indeed helped strengthen the resolve to become a power to reckon with. Power? Economically speaking, culturally too. Not so much militarily as far as I can tell.

                Information about things are organized so far - or institutionalised you find here: http://europa.eu.int/ parliament, representation, budget, aims etc


                -------------------------------------------------
                DISARM SWITZERLAND!
                Google ergo sum

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