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Thursday, April 15, 2010

IMHO, News of the EU's Death Is Grossly Exaggerated (although we should always listen carefully to George Soros)

George Soros thinks not only that "[i]t is 50-50 whether the euro zone breaks up," but that even "the European Union itself [is] at risk of breaking up."

This would be a sensible expectation, I suppose, if the EURO, or the shared monetary and fiscal policies it rests on, were the only thing that kept the European Union together.

I don't think that is the case. As I argue in my book :-), the EU is, at its heart, also a geopolitical project, devised under circumstances that have been trying not only for west European capital, but also for west European states. The EU is a response to those trying circumstances (especially the west European states' and west European capital's endemic problems of size and global economic weight).

Since its creation two generations ago, the organization we call the EU today has advanced to a level far beyond a monetary union or a shared economic policy. Although it is not a state, it is definitely a supra-state polity of sorts by now, and its breakup would cause, as pretty much everybody at the helm of the EU as well as the member states seems to agree, damages way beyond the cost of ostensibly "helping out the profligate southerners." (I love this language of "the southerners", as if written to please graduate students interested in critical race theory.)

Anyway, my bet is 90:10 for the survival of the EU :-)).

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cover page of the book

cover page of the book
image used for the cover design by Anannya Dasgupta