While the UK is wholly focused on Brexit negotiations, yesterday the 12th Sept Jean- Claude Junker gave his state of the Union speech.
It may have been a thoughtful and reflective speech, accompanied by concrete initiatives on trade, investment screening, cybersecurity, industry, and data IT DID LITTLE TO ADDRESS the wave of populist protest that can yet inflict serious damage on Europe.
The rise of populist or far-right parties in Germany, Italy, Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Austria, Denmark and elsewhere threaten not only the stability of individual governments, but the cohesion of Europe itself, and its most sacred values of democracy and freedom.
Already we can see that the EU is practically powerless to resist the erosion of civil liberties and the rule of law in eastern Europe, while the Conte-Salvini administration in Rome promises even more serious trouble on migration and the single currency.
Mr. Juncker recognized these challenges but had few immediate proposals to turn the populist tide nor did he offer much evidence that the commission has all the answers.
These are not times for any European leader to talk airily about further losses of national power and sovereignty. The next commission president need not be a Eurosceptic – an absurd notion anyway – but he or she will need, somehow, to bring Europe closer to its disaffected citizens. The EU is not a sovereign nation. It can’t have a president, nor can it grant citizenship.
It’s only an organization, deluded enough to think it’s a country.
The social balance of the EU and the EU nations is crucial for the EU future. The effects of the economic and financial crisis are still causing great hardship in many parts of Europe.
If the commission is to learn anything from the departure of the UK it must improve the public perception of the Union.
We will and are living in a Union of unemployed people, many of them young people who feel sidelined. Until this situation has changed, it must be the number one concern, to grant the Uk any agreement that is seeing as better than what exists for its remaining members will put the final nail in the coffin.
The UK is and was a hypocritical member seeking to get benefits for its businesses whilst, all too often, leaving its citizens out of the equation.
Brexit is inevitable. It is much too late to cancel Brexit.
The uncertainty about the future relationship is entirely due to the UK’s clueless incompetence and serial backtracking on previously agreed on things which PM May had SIGNED under.
The Brexit mess is 100% made in the UK.
At a time when and the desire to preserve access to EU capital for its banks, asset managers and insurers, many in the UK at least perceive the Commission’s proposed changes to strengthen rules around third country access as a direct attempt to ensure that the UK does not engage in a regulatory race to the bottom, once outside the EU.
THERE IS NO AGREEMENT TRADE OR OTHERWISE THAT A NEW PRIME MINISTER WILL NOT TRY TO CHANGE.
It will fall to Mr. Juncker’s successor, from next summer, to lead Europe away from its real and present dangers Of falling into the nationalistic fairy traps.
The EU has for way too long been dominated by an international corporate capital much better at international cooperation than the civil society. In Brussels, the corporate business lobby is much better organized than small business, workers unions, and civil society movements.
HOWEVER, WE ARE STILL ON A LEARNING CURVE WITH THE EUROPEAN UNION.
One of the greatest challenges to the EU is that it does not stand still for long, with social media and the advance of technology in order to stay standing it must involve its citizens with an equal share of its benefits both financial and otherwise.
To give Europeans a working interest in the Union here is a suggestion that could go a long way in achieving an active engagement of its citizens in its future development.
WHY NOT INTRODUCE A EUROPEAN TREASURY BOND.
EVERYONE CAN BE AFFORDED AN OPPORTUNITY TO INVEST IN ITS FUTURE.
20,000 new border guards to police the EU’s Mediterranean borders by 2020 is too late.
THE JURY IS STILL OUT ON THE OVERALL PERFORMANCE OF THE JCJ COMMISSION.
All human comments appreciated. All lie clicks chucked in the bin.