Sarkozy-Merkel and the U.S. of Europe
In a deal done at Deauville in October the French and German leaders effectively signed up the rest of the EU to a federation thus ensuring that Germany does not foot the entire bill for saving the embattled Euro, according to a post-Christmas analysis by the Wall Street Journal.
The proximate cause of the problem? The unimaginable and ongoing cost of the bailout imposed on Europeans following the recklessly deadly game of subprime roulette played by global bankers that caused the 2007 financial crisis, which today is known, at least in East Asia, as the North Atlantic crash.
As a number of economists have previously noted, to survive longterm, the monetary union underpinning the Euro requires a common fiscal authority to impose fiscal discipline, regulate taxes and oversee budgets in member states, something as we reported here at the time both Merkel and Sarkozy recognised earlier.
Thus willingly or otherwise Europe faces the end-game in the New Year, and those who disapprove of a United States of Europe can blame the irresponsible, bonus-crazed bankers who wrecked the North Atlantic economies.
As historians of the EU recount the U.S.of E was initially only whispered by former French foreign minister Robert Schuman, Jean Monnet and the other — mostly French founders — of the EU in the days of its predecessor, the 6-nation European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC).
Here’s what Robert Schuman wrote in 1950:
“Europe will not be made all at once, or according to a single plan. It will be built through concrete achievements which first create a de facto solidarity. The coming together of the nations of Europe requires the elimination of the age-old opposition of France and Germany. Any action taken must in the first place concern these two countries. With this aim in view, the French Government proposes that action be taken immediately on one limited but decisive point.
“It proposes that Franco-German production of coal and steel as a whole be placed under a common High Authority, within the framework of an organization open to the participation of the other countries of Europe. The pooling of coal and steel production should immediately provide for the setting up of common foundations for economic development as a first step in the federation of Europe, and will change the destinies of those regions which have long been devoted to the manufacture of munitions of war, of which they have been the most constant victims.” – Robert Schuman, extract from 9 May 1950 declaration.
Read the WSJ article here: As Ireland Flails, Europe Lurches Across the Rubicon