European Integration (3): Crowding out comprehensive European integration

Looking back at the first few posts on this blog, it seems that before highlighting any news I have ended up spending some time describing the process of European integration and its consequences.  I think this happened because of the attempted terrorist attacks on Merkel, Sarkozy and Berlusconi. Although these events have already been relegated to the dustbins of history where none will look, and so none will remember, to me they were reminders of the fragility of the European project. They highlighted the burdens that reluctant reforms impose on our citizens as our leaders refuse to endow the EU with the appropriate tools to properly fulfil it’s goals. As reluctance to provide meaningful help exposes the lack of solidarity, animosity arises towards those who provide meaningless “assistance”.
Bad, half baked reforms erode support for European integration. Reluctant European integration crowds out comprehensive European integration. Depending on how damaging it is, this might eventually cause support for any type of integration to fall apart by association.
Reluctant integration, much like light touch regulation is an oxymoron. You either need to integrate or you don’t. If we want to be part of the set of global decision makers, if we want to continue to grow and to do so together and sustainably, then we need to integrate. We need to form a more perfect Union, as Lincoln put it. This is why we need a proactive attitude towards comprehensive European integration rather than this undecided reluctance.

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