August 27, 2003

Why Europe MAY be doomed I

I just read a two part essay on "Why Europe is NOT Doomed". I can't say I agree with it but I'm not so sure I agree with the "Europe is doomed" crowd which Norwegian Blogger say emanates from "Little Green Footballs, The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler, and den Beste", among others.

The reason is this. The doomed crowd thinks that Europe is doomed based on a straight line projection of current trends and the conviction that there are no likely viable exits to the vicious circle. They're going down, they'll continue to go down and at some point a nasty descent into disaster and/or fascism will result.

The Norwegian Blogger, by contrast, admits that things are bad, but that there are clear exits out, that Europe's been led by too many idiots before and it's always pulled back from ruin in time and is sure to do so once again.

I find both arguments unsatisfying but both being factually correct as to the present state. I'm inclined toward the Norwegian Blogger's position that no, Europe, collectively, can't be that stupid but I'm reminded of an incident in the 1996 Romanian elections. I was sure then as well that nobody could be stupid enough to do the obvious lemming march off the cliff.

The center right Democratic Convention coalition signed a solemn document very reminiscent of the Contract with America, called the Contract with Romania. They promised a 20 point program and mass resignations after 200 days if they didn't implement it. They won just enough votes to create a coalition government but not enough votes to actually implement the program as some of their coalition partners weren't Contract signers.

200 days came and went and nobody resigned. They were almost all voted out in the next national elections in 2000. In other words, here was a european country, taking advice from some of the best political minds of the free world, and they absolutely were not smart enough to get out of their lemming march over the cliff. They committed electoral suicide rather than give up power and call new elections. Their example does not give me a lot of hope for the EU in general.

Posted by TMLutas at August 27, 2003 04:26 PM