The Corner

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Getting the Message


The Guardian reports:

Public confidence in the European Union has fallen to historically low levels in the six biggest EU countries, raising fundamental questions about its democratic legitimacy more than three years into the union’s worst ever crisis, new data shows. After financial, currency and debt crises, wrenching budget and spending cuts, rich nations’ bailouts of the poor, and surrenders of sovereign powers over policymaking to international technocrats, Euroscepticism is soaring to a degree that is likely to feed populist anti-EU politics and frustrate European leaders’ efforts to arrest the collapse in support for their project….

“The damage is so deep that it does not matter whether you come from a creditor, debtor country, euro would-be member or the UK: everybody is worse off,” said José Ignacio Torreblanca, head of the ECFR’s Madrid office. “Citizens now think that their national democracy is being subverted by the way the euro crisis is conducted.”

Well, those citizens are right, but the EU’s assault on democracy is not confined to its efforts to preserve the single currency. The individuals who dreamt up what became the EU were profoundly suspicious of the European nation-state, a creation that they saw as almost inevitably leading to future wars. In their view, such states should be absorbed into a wider European union, regardless (basically) of the wishes of their populations. The democratic deficit was not a bug, it was a feature, and it was, is, and will be the essence of the Brussels project.

Back to the Guardian:

In Spain, trust in the EU fell from 65% to 20% over the five-year period while mistrust soared to 72% from 23%. In five of the six countries, including Britain, mistrust prevailed over trust by sizeable margins, whereas in 2007 – with the exception of the UK – the opposite was the case. Five years ago, 56% of Germans “tended to trust” the EU, whereas 59% now “tend to mistrust”. In France, mistrust has risen from 41% to 56%. In Italy, where public confidence in Europe has traditionally been higher than in the national political class, mistrust of the EU has almost doubled from 28% to 53%.

Even in Poland, which enthusiastically joined the EU less than a decade ago and is the single biggest beneficiary from the transfers of tens of billions of euros from Brussels, support has plummeted from 68% to 48%, although it remains the sole country surveyed where more people trust than mistrust the union.

EU subsidies that run in the billions will do that.

In a way, this turn against Brussels is only to be expected. In tough times electorates turn on those in charge. And the voters are beginning to realize who that is. The fact that the EU oligarchy’s only plan is even more of the same is unlikely to improve their mood.


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