The Problem of Europe
by Roland Stahl
Today I read about the Problem of Europe as a question of creeping Federalism. Apparently Margret Thatcher anticipated the problem by saying that the only way the euro could work was by a form of increased Federalism, which she declared she totally rejected as unthinkable.
The economic problems of the euro are predictable enough when you try to have a single currency but multiple nations. The poverty and bankruptcy of Greece pale into insignificance when compared with the bankruptcy of the United States of America, yet the USA has one critical advantage over Greece: it can print up more dollars any time it wants (and, oh, does it want – and don’t expect that thirst to be slaked any time soon), but Greece cannot print up more euros (unless no one notices as they slip some in – there's an idea).
It is easy to see the inevitability of the whole process, which has been going on for hundreds and thousands of years. Gradually, however long it takes, Europe will finally coalesce into a single entity, with a single currency. However, the same process will simply continue until, however long it takes, the whole world will finally become a single political entity, with a single government, a single currency, a single bank, and even a single language (probably English).
This may take two or three hundred years to work itself out into some sort of stable arrangement, but the world may not last that long. The biological survival of the Earth as a living organism, is a serious and open question. As Lester Brown (World on the Edge) and many others have concluded, it should be possible for the human race to intervene, in time to save the Earth from dying out, but it is greatly complicated by the political chaos currently being enjoyed by the planet. Or not being enjoyed, as it may happen.
So why not simply fast-forward and get it done with right away, so that we can then proceed “at wartime speed” (Lester Brown’s wording), and with the very highest priority, to the process of reversing all of the many virulent processes killing off our world? Simple and obvious examples are the proliferation of toxic chemicals for the soil, and pharmaceutical drugs for human bodies. These must be replaced with organic processes and cycles if there is to be any hope of the survival of life on earth.
If all of Europe were united into a common land, with a single government and a single currency (but it is very hard to imagine a single language), that would probably provide significant benefits to all of Europe, including the wealthier parts which would eventually end up funding the elevation of the poorer parts. But the advantages gained would greatly outweigh these costs, which is why those wealthier nations and/or people will eventually pay the cost and unite Europe.
But all of that will only shift the argument and the problem to a larger theater: the World Stage. It is the Whole World that needs a single currency, a single bank, a single government, and a single language, not just Europe! Why do we waste our time in this way? The problem is urgent; why don’t we proceed immediately to a “Congress of the Wealthy and Powerful” to set up some protocol for advancing the argument? The sooner we accomplish those four Changes, the sooner we can all move on to the next and supremely important item on the Agenda: the survival of life on earth.
The Evanescent Press