EU constitution talks collapse

The EU summit in Brussels to approve the union's new constitution has collapsed.

The main sticking point was voting rights. Poland and Spain wanted to maintain the current undemocratic and disproportional system, which gives them (populations 38 million and 41 million, respectively) 27 votes, in comparison with the 29 wielded each by Germany (population 82 million) and France (60 million). The more democratic proposal for passing legislation - a simple majority of countries with at least 60% of the total EU population - was rejected by Poland and Spain.

The proposed voting formula provided safeguards for the smaller countries of the EU and hardly represented a means of "domination" of Germany, the UK, France and Italy. The requirement of a simple majority of countries (putting, for example, Luxembourg on the same level as Germany) offset the percentage of population required to approve proposals (and even if the big four European countries always voted as a bloc, their total population of approximately 258 million wouldn't give them enough leverage to always pass or block legislation in any event). If Poland and Spain had genuinely been interested in representing smaller countries against the tyranny of the larger ones, they could have worked within the proposed system to get other smaller countries (e.g., Greece, Portugal, Belgium, the Scandanavian states) on their side to block discriminatory legislation. Presenting arguments and building ad hoc coalitions - isn't that the liberal idea of parliamentary democracy?

Instead, these two states opted to throw a monkeywrench into the whole EU integration venture in a bid to hang on to a measure of power they do not deserve. But a rejection of democratic means is not really surprising for these two countries and especially Poland, whose leading ideological currents for the past half century have been Stalinism - hardly democratic - and a particularly hardline strain of Roman Catholicism - an ideology which, considering the persistent silence of its overall head and His inability or lack of desire to meet with constituents, is even less democratic.

Poland seems to think it is doing a favor to the EU by joining. But this is hardly the case:
Spain... is a big recipient of EU funds, and... Poland... will be one of the biggest recipients for years to come.
Who wouldn't want a system that let you keep extracting government subsisidies courtesy of German and French taxpayers? Who said socialism was dead?

It would be best if the EU could just dump Poland at this point. This would both get rid of dead weight and send a message to Spain to stop trying to cock up a system that was being established while it still in the middle of its fascist experiment. Poland could continue to be the US's quisling, but without a structure that it could wreck from the inside. It could take advantage of the "golden boy" relations it currently has with the US, which might last until a conflict of interest landed it in the same doghouse that France, Russia, and Germany are in right now (how about some "freedom kielbasa" to go with your eggs, Mr. Miller?). Or it could start a "New European Union", annoint itself as the head (after god and the pope, of course), and see how many European states would prefer to join NEU over the "old" EU.

But it doesn't seem as if this course of action is possible at this point. Instead, it seems as if France and Germany, along with other pro-integration states, might move to develop a parallel or "fast" track towards integration. This will almost certainly hurt the EU and its political significance in the short- to medium-term and possibly for much longer.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?