What better way to save a sinking, failing union than to create an even more integrated, sinking, failing union.
French Prime Minister Manuel Valls thinks that the best way for the EU to exist would mean transforming the current EU iteration, into what would be called a United States of Europe.
Best of all, the new USE would have its own military European army. Just what the world needs.
Valls’ thinking is deviously clever, but doomed to fail because the last thing people in Europe want is more EU integration.
Valls writes in the Financial Times, “We cannot build a United States of Europe” BUT… “Member states of the EU have two options, either we give up or or we transform the EU.”
The die is cast. Nations are desperately trying to find ways out of the prison called the European Union, and Valls’ globalist, last gasp effort to keep the prisoners locked up, will never get up off the ground.
Brexit Vote Pushes Europe to Redefine Itself, by Manuel Valls….
Let us face facts: the European project is in trouble. With the growing threat of terrorism, the refugee crisis, lacklustre economic growth and unemployment, the turmoil in Europe is unprecedented. Added to these, the Brexit vote deeply questioned the very meaning of Europe.
The other 27 member states of the EU have two options (this was the subject of my debate with Jean-Claude Juncker at the Jacques Delors Institute last week): either we give up and leave the European project to a slow but certain death, or we transform the EU.
Reasserting our European identity also means coming to terms with the fact that there are borders — that Europe starts and stops somewhere.
Too often the EU has appeared to be preoccupied with unnecessary regulation. Transforming Europe also means that member states must henceforth focus on the essentials, primarily defence and security — in Europe, of course, but also in the neighbouring region of the Middle East. The French army is already doing more than its fair share: it cannot remain the de facto European army forever. France expects Europe to implement a common security strategy, with fully operational border guards and an electronic system for travel authorisation of the kind already operated by the US.
Finally, transforming Europe means making a clear choice to foster growth that does not only depend on the European Central Bank’s monetary policy. Europe must finance new projects and invest in digital and environmental innovation more than it does already.
These sectors must be enabled to grow and to face competition from countries that have no scruples about protecting their own industries. The time for naivety is over.
For this reason, the negotiations over the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) cannot carry on as they have been. If the EU is to grant market access to American companies, there has to be reciprocity.
The European market must not be a social jungle, where people are set against one another. Nor can it be a tax jungle. It is unacceptable for multinational companies to do everything in their power to avoid paying tax in the countries in which they make profits. The recent ruling of the European Commission on Apple’s tax affairs was courageous and welcome, therefore. At the same time, member states must progress towards common European tax rates.
We cannot build a “United States of Europe”— each country has its own history, language and culture. But we can construct a sovereign Europe, a federation of nation states, strong and unashamed. We will not be the generation that buries the European project. We owe it to our young, who, for the most part, remain deeply attached to the European project. So are we.