Even if most of the Europeans are against the idea of a Federal States of Europe.
Even if harmonizing Social Security and Laws is a daunting task almost impossible.
Even if the language, cultural and historical provincialism barriers seems impossible to break.
Even if the fact that we have a mixed Republic / Monarchy political system that turns any Federation idea into a legal and institucional governance nightmare.
I do believe that we will be pushed to it even against all odds… and sooner than later. Why?
Now what? A breakup of the euro is very nearly unthinkable, as a sheer matter of practicality. As Berkeley’s Barry Eichengreen puts it, an attempt to reintroduce a national currency would trigger “the mother of all financial crises.” So the only way out is forward: to make the euro work, Europe needs to move much further toward political union, so that European nations start to function more like American states. (here)
But a Federation would require much more integration at taxation, prices, wages, social security, education levels than anything else. That’s why the Euro was a mistake. None of the previous were in place, and still aren’t, to allow a feasible monetary integration growth at no one’s expenses but as a common goal.
What is even more sad was hearing the Swedish Finance Minister in the television today saying that Greece is doing less than expected and that they will have to push taxes higher and IMF (not the BCE nor the Eurostat) should monitor closely Greeks’ finances. Sad to see that the flexibility that French and German had is not good for the others. Sad to see that EU governments don’t believe in EU insititutions to do the job and need to ask an external entity to do it for them. The USA or the Russian Federation would never accept that IMF tells them how to rule their countries.
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Note: this article was last updated in February 17th, 2010
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