EU President Says Institution Paralysed by Brexit and Nationalism
The president of the European Parliament had used his final interview in the position to concede the institution is “treading water”, has not moved on from Brexit, and has little idea of how to deal with rising nationalism across the continent.
Isn’t paralysis the normal condition of the EU? Isn’t it always “treading water”? I can’t think of a single crisis in the last 10 years that the EU hasn’t failed to address. Everything always just gets kicked further down the road, because nobody ever has any idea what to do about anything. The global slump. The euro. Mass immigration. Islamic terrorism. Populism. Brexit. You name it, they haven’t a clue what to do about it.
But the EU is an institution that exists for its own sake. The only solution ever proffered to any and every problem is “More Europe”. Because the EU “project” has always been about building a European superstate like the USA or (actually) the old USSR. Because post-WW2 only superstates like them had any clout in the world, and if Europe was going to have a “place at the table” it would have to become a superstate too.
So they’ve created a superstate, and provided it with the necessary glassy modern architecture, and the parliamentary debating chambers, and the very big round tables with translators and bottles of Perrier water. And they all sit round the big round tables. But nobody has anything to say. At the heart of the EU there’s just emptiness.
Well, not quite. In 2009, the EU parliament voted for a European smoking ban, and for show trials of prominent offenders. They haven’t a clue what to do about the big problems, but they can address tiny non-problems.
Which reminds me of another headline I caught yesterday:
Spanish Government Considers Making Islamic Feasts Public Holidays
Isn’t that wonderful? Spain has got as many big problems as any other European country, but its government is considering making Islamic feasts public holidays! But then the Spanish government is about as paralysed as the EU government. And when governments are paralysed, they can only do stupid little things like this. And all the governments of Europe are either paralysed or semi-paralysed.
It might all start changing in a couple of weeks time, though. Because the equally semi-paralysed US government is about to see a dynamic new President take office and start making things happen. In fact, he’s already started making things happen, even before he’s taken office, as US corporations have started scampering to repatriate jobs to America.
In a paralysed world, the real terror is that somebody somewhere might Do Something. That’s really why people are scared of Vladimir Putin: he’s very decisive, and he actually does things. And that’s also what really scares people about Donald Trump: he might actually, really, y’know,… do something – something other other than, well, banning smoking or creating Islamic public holidays, which is the sort of thing Hillary Clinton would have done if she’d got elected.
Donald Trump Plans Revamp of Top U.S. Spy Agency
President-elect works on restructuring Office of the Director of National Intelligence, tweets again his doubts that Russia hacked Democrats
There must be absolute terror inside the FBI, CIA, NSA, EPA, NASA. and every single department in the US federal government, at what The Donald is going to do. There have probably been lots of people off sick with the chronic panic attacks they’ve been experiencing since 8 November. The demand for Safe Spaces full of cuddly toys is probably at an all-time high. There are people in the US government who’ve been in a Very Safe Space for the last half-century, and now they have no idea what’s going to happen to their world.
And if Trump manages to shake up America, he’s going to shake up the whole world. Because the seismic shock waves are going to ripple out of America all over the world. In fact, they already are. There are probably entire think tanks devoting themselves to figuring out what to do. For example:
Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair is to invest £9.3 million of proceeds from his lobbying business in a new institute that he is setting up to fight populism.
Mr Blair said last month he was creating the Tony Blair Institute (TBI) aimed at combatting populism and “making globalisation work”. On Wednesday, he confirmed he given £9.26 million net assets of his company Windrush Ventures limited to the new institute, The Times reports…
Mr Blair said last month the TBI would be a “platform” offering “thought leadership” on anti-populist, pro-globalisation policies.
He added it would “build a new policy agenda” for what he called the “centre ground” of politics, as well as allowing “a reasonable and evidence based discussion of the future which avoids the plague of social media-led exchanges of abuse.”
“Thought leadership”, eh? We all need thought leadership, don’t we? We can’t have people thinking for themselves, can we? No, sir. And Tony Blair is just exactly the kind of guy who can provide thought leadership, isn’t he? And we all know who is the anti-globalist populist with the hyperactive Twitter account, don’t we?
Only a couple of weeks to go now.