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A Question About European Nationalism

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posted on Oct, 22 2011 @ 01:42 AM
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With the serious questions continuing about the viability of the Euro and the whole European Union project, it seems like the media always reports these issues in such a way where the idea of national sovereignty gets short shrift. The question I have for the European users of ATS is how your nation looks at the idea of sovereignty, and as a larger inquiry, why does it seem so many European nations seem so willing to accept greater integration?

I've heard the explanations rooted in economics as well as the desire never to have another scenario like the Second World War, but I have a hard time believing Europeans are so passive about seeing Brussels take on a larger and larger role in determining the destiny of their nations.

I look forward to hearing your responses. Please let me know what country you are talking about in your post, as well as your thoughts toward Europe in general and what you'd like to see.




posted on Oct, 22 2011 @ 03:49 AM
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reply to post by cassandranova
 

Many Germans oppose the European Union an Brussels intrusion into our national affairs from a national-souvereign point of view... besides dissatisfaction about the ECB's and EFSF's doings from a economic point of view.

You could compare it to your traditional Conservatives or Libertarian attitude towards your big Federal Government.

Although this position exists, it is not heard publicly very often because here in Germany a "overly strong" National Identity is somewhat tabooed.
So we choose to argue more likely from another angle against the EU.



posted on Oct, 22 2011 @ 04:07 AM
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Here in the UK we kinda straddle the fence - being part of the EU for trade, but staunchly clingling on to our Sovereignty and financial system. We refused to join the Euro (think it was maastrict treaty) along with Denmark way back in the 80s.

Currently there is going to be a debate in parliament next week - as some 100,000 people e-petitioned for parliament to debate a referendum on UK remaining part of the EU. We haven't been able to vote on this since the early days of the EU (which was then a small group of european countries that simply wanted to trade more easily).

However the EU has grown into a large grouping of countries and economies - the united states it isn't. Nobody seems able to agree on policy. let alone what to do about the economies in trouble at the moment.



posted on Oct, 22 2011 @ 04:15 AM
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Originally posted by cassandranova
why does it seem so many European nations seem so willing to accept greater integration?


it's not nations but politicians who have betrayed their people. EU is like a soviet union where people have no voice, see how we have that rat of a EU president Herman Van Rompuy who was not elected but given that position by who ever knows...



posted on Oct, 22 2011 @ 04:18 AM
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reply to post by cassandranova
 


here in the uk we are sick of brussells sticking its nose in our way of life .
brussells can't manage their own accounts but still think they run a country better than the governments of the union countries.
they are for ever comming up with stupid dictates.
and as for the euro , how the hell can a single currency work when all the countries have different economies.
the british people want a vote as to stay or leave the union but our govenment will not allow it.



posted on Oct, 22 2011 @ 04:29 AM
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reply to post by britchik
 


The British staunchly cling to many things ... the tailcoat of the United States being the main anchor of the UK. Their halfhearted attempts to play in the European premiere league are a national embarrassment for that country & I can't be the only continental European who wishes our British friends (or shall I say English ?) to leave the EU altogether. They make for tiresome neighbors.

The financial problems will either make or break the EU, I suspect the latter. Either complete financial ruin or total European integration, with the EU Parliament assuming sovereignty & oversight over most financial matters.

The ability of your Parliament to issue currency in your own right, to raise taxes and allocate expenditure are the most basic elements of the nation state. All that will be destroyed with EU financial integration. To her credit, the former English Prime Minister Mrs Thatcher saw that one coming a generation ago. Who could ever believe she was entirely correct in her assessment ?

Like the British, the French electorate won't stomach major decisions about their nation ... especially financial ... being made by an unelected foreign civil servant.

The Germans, the Dutch, the Scandinavians, the Brits don't want to pay for southern European debt & who could reasonably blame them either ?

The next week looks interesting, to say the least.



posted on Oct, 22 2011 @ 10:03 AM
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Thanks for the insight. Are there any "mainstream" politicians in your countries who advocate a weakening of the EU and increasing national sovereignty, or is that considered an inherently radical or fascist position?

I've read quite a few stories about minor parties who seem to make the case, but they're always painted as xenophobic racists. Is this a fair description, or is it more propaganda?

For those in the France, Germany, and the UK, I had a question for each as well.

How is the Front National viewed in France as indicators seem to suggest to someone reading the news they are gaining in popularity and attempting to broaden their appeal?

For Germany, I was wondering when nationalism would stop being verboten and if younger generations had a very different view of this than people whose experience was shaped by the World War or the Cold War.

Lastly, with Britain, I've wondered for a long time why the Tories don't just come out and try to push away from the EU and chart an independent course, more aligned with the Commonwealth countries and the US. It seems like a somewhat natural affinity and has strong historical precedent.

As much as anything, I'm curious to see what solutions happen for Europe, and if any new political structures emerge. A good number of people stateside see the possibility of an economic and to some extent political union emerging out of the euro crisis in the northern states, but I don't trust the media that much, so your insight is really helpful!



edit on 22-10-2011 by cassandranova because: specifics



posted on Oct, 23 2011 @ 04:27 AM
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reply to post by cassandranova
 


Originally posted by cassandranova
Are there any "mainstream" politicians in your countries who advocate a weakening of the EU and increasing national sovereignty, or is that considered an inherently radical or fascist position?

Every one in a while national sovereignty is subject to discussion in a debate of the Bundestag, but its always in context of economic affairs or differences between the "EU Directive" (you have to love that word) and German law... its always in regard to a specific topic, never about national sovereignty per se.


Originally posted by cassandranova
For Germany, I was wondering when nationalism would stop being verboten and if younger generations had a very different view of this than people whose experience was shaped by the World War or the Cold War.

Its not "verboten" or considered as "fascist"... its just an unpopular position in politics but German Patriotism is alive and well.
Younger generations respekt our History in both World Wars but are less affected by the impact it had on our society.
edit on 23-10-2011 by ColCurious because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 23 2011 @ 04:46 AM
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reply to post by cassandranova
 





Lastly, with Britain, I've wondered for a long time why the Tories don't just come out and try to push away from the EU and chart an independent course, more aligned with the Commonwealth countries and the US. It seems like a somewhat natural affinity and has strong historical precedent.



The thing is the EU is where Britain does 40% of it's trade. To just cut and run would be devastating for our economy as will be a break up of the Euro. If the Euro survives then we need to renegotiate Britains relationship with Europe, making sure we regain sovereignty when it comes to law making. I want our politicians to have a proper debate on the issue, rather than just denying British people the opportunity vote on a referendum. The political class has proved they are incapable of representing the views of the electorate. It's a rotten system on both sides of the house.



posted on Oct, 23 2011 @ 05:04 AM
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I am actually an American but living in Romania for a few years now. Here the people not so long ago were under the soviet thumb so the EU thumb is certainly seen as an improvement. They however are not part of the eurozone so the financial issues are not so much.
One thing American don't understand so much about the 'nation' thing is that in Europe the boarders have moved around a lot and it is not always co clear historically where the 'heart' of the people is. Parts of Romania are in some ways closer to parts of Austria or Hungary for instance. Often people think of loyalty in smaller regions than the nation lines on todays maps.
Overall its a mixed bag, much like the US where some states( and people) are happier with the idea of a strong federal government than others.





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