Monthly Archives

March 2020

European, Politics

The capitulation of the European Council.

In his hour of need, the European citizen feels abandoned! In the face of the pandemic and the looming economic collapse, yesterday’s video-conference of the European Council demonstrated that its participants are not up to their responsibilities. This exceptional situation required a unanimous immediate response, catapulting the EU to the rank of a major power which, together with the USA, China, India, Japan… will have to cooperate closely to face the huge challenges that are unfolding. To hold on to ideologies or the myth of “national sovereignty” is unacceptable. It is all together that the EU27 will limit the sacrifices shouldered by their citizens which will be all the more painful that the western “democracies” have the most to lose….

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European, Politics

European Union: the suspension of budgetary rules.

A hasty and poorly thought decision that is likely to be irreversible! It is common to suggest that the EU makes decisive progress only in a crisis. This time around, however, it would seem that the opportunity offered by the coronavirus epidemic has been wasted; this was a unique chance to reinforce significantly the powers exercised by the European Institutions on behalf of all EU citizens. Reacting precipitously, the Commission proposed last Friday to suspend the rules that framed the budgetary processes of EMU Members and whose enforcement constitutes the foundation and sustainability of the Single Currency. By bowing to Italy’s pressing demands and taking note of France’s unilateral measures, the Commission has allowed each country to pursue its own…

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Economic and Financial

Coronavirus: the end of an epoch!

The article of Pierre Defraigne “Who will pay the bill for the coronavirus” (La Libre Belgique 18/03/20) is, as usual with this eminent specialist of European affairs, both pertinent and coherent insofar as it identifies precisely the major policy areas that must be managed at EU level if the Union wishes to justify its existence and consequently ensure its survival. Nevertheless, I cannot endorse P. Defraigne’s rigorous analysis because it appears to me as a mere (useful) development of the arguments advanced over the last 50 years surrounding the EU project. Indeed, I believe that we have reached a point of rupture in which the accumulation of tensions in several key areas, considered up to now separately, are intermingling,  making…

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European, Politics

Covid19: Globalization in question?

The “Coronavirus” – unlike the “Subprime” in 2008 – is the trigger of a much wider crisis! The comparison between the coronavirus and the subprime stems from the fact that both factors served as detonators, igniting – then as now – a powder-filled unstable environment. There, unfortunately, ends the similarities, but drawing attention to them serves to underscore the urgency of the situation and its capacity to initiate a major geopolitical crisis of an amplitude unknown since the 1930’s. One should recall that the latter was only resolved by WWII whose inevitability had been largely fostered by the inexorable rise of authoritarian “nationalisms” and (temporarily) spineless democracies. Though present circumstances are thoroughly different, similar conditions seem to be spreading around…

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