The Spectacle Blog

The European Project Totters

By on 12.2.10 | 6:44AM

The European Union started out as a worthwhile endeavor, a "common market" for European peoples inconveniently divided among theretofore warring states.  But it has turned into something else entirely.  The EU has taken on malign political ambitions, attempting to create a continental consolidated government over the opposition of many Europeans.  The Eurozone added another dimension, linking together disparate states with independent fiscal policies.

The latter is hemorrhaging financially.  Greece and Ireland have ended up in the German-financed bail-out line.  Facing too much debt, they have ... taken on more debt to solve their problems.  Some people are now pointing to Spain and Portugal as the next most likely bail-out candidates.  Today the New York Times highlights Belgium and Italy!  Reports the Times:

Throughout Europe's financial crisis, Italy and Belgium have managed to avoid being one of the countries that keep people awake at night.

But even as concern mounts that Portugal and possibly Spain may seek financial aid after Greece and Ireland requested bailouts, investors have started asking whether those two economies may be the next weak links in Europe's monetary union, the euro.

Belgium isn't really a country.  But Italy matters, both economically and politically.  If it goes, the fun really starts in Europe.  Assuming the German people are less enthused than German politicians about bailing out their wastral neighbors, the Eurozone is likely to shrink, or possible collapse. (Has the famed D-mark ever looked so good?) 

And then even the EU might find rough-sailing.  But it is time for Europeans who care about liberty and democracy to take a hard look at where the project is heading.

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