Our unquestioned association with the U.S. will cement the downfall.
I often see similarities between observations I make in the classroom and the world at large. Observing the EU and their struggle for emancipation is not an exception.
I have been teaching children who dropped out of the public school system for many years. For the most part, they were as beautiful humans as all the rest of us. They were bright. They were loving and empathic beings. Yes, they carried a bunch of baggage around. Most of us do, even if we do not admit it.
There was one factor that could ruin their future. They associated themselves with crowds that would drag them down. And they wouldn’t let these relations go. Because they desperately wanted to belong somewhere. Anywhere. Street gangs and other criminal enterprises prey on disenfranchised teens.
The EU is committing that same mistake. For decades, European countries sought the recognition of the U.S.
We waged wars on their behalf. And we never dared to question western human rights abuses. Yes, we even let them torture publishers who commit the sin of showing evidence of western war crimes. Lately, this blind allegiance has proven to have severe consequences for our future.
The EU Is Still a Beautiful Project
In many ways, the EU is a wonderful political project. There are some big flaws, sure. But we should be honest. EU citizens enjoy freedoms that can be found nowhere else. Like the freedom to travel anywhere inside the union. Or that they can live and seek out economic opportunities everywhere. Without going through lengthy vis processes. They can conduct business and trade across borders. They enjoy healthcare protection in the entire EU zone. And they have access to a bunch of economic privileges.
All this cooperation has made the prospect of war much more unlikely. At least among the EU members themselves. And honestly, for that reason alone, the Nobel Prize was deserved.
I myself benefit from it. Those freedoms enabled me to live in Denmark for 25 years. I have a danish pension fund, which I can take with me wherever I go. Any EU citizen can hire me as a tutor and buy my courses. I have friends and contacts in almost every EU country. And I can be sure that there are reasonable safety standards for products I buy. Anywhere in Europe.
There are flaws, that is correct. We didn’t think this monetary union through to the end. The trade imbalances are a killer. Tax evasion schemes are rampant. The lack of national sovereignty kills many progressive initiatives. And yes, capitalists use the existing rules to undermine welfare systems. And labor standards.
But the EU project does many things right. It could be a shining beacon for human rights. It has the potential to show a path to lasting peace. And it could choose to be a true innovator. A trailblazer for the sustainable societies we need.
Unfortunately, we associate ourselves with an empire that ruins everything we built up.