The Herald reports:
Almost daily, Europe faces questions on whether its once-vaunted single currency can survive, and anti-European Union rumblings echo in capitals where governments are cutting spending in exchange for a bailout from Brussels or to satisfy its scrutiny of the national deficit.
The European Union is in the thick of its deepest crisis – and at its core is whether the EU’s design, based on shifts of power from sovereign states to the centre, is fatally flawed.
Yet even in the midst of this turbulent debate, a powerful bloc is saying the answer to Europe’s problem is not less integration, but more.
Last week, 11 out of the 27 EU nations appealed to save the guttering flame of federalism.
“In many parts of Europe, nationalism and populism are on the rise, while the feeling of solidarity and sense of belonging in Europe are dwindling,” the so-called Future of Europe Group said. “We have to take action to restore confidence in our joint project.”
The eight-page blueprint issued in Warsaw calls for closer economic and monetary governance across the EU, including a single supervisory body for banks and closer inspection by Brussels of national budgets and economic strategies.
Now bear in mind that those in Brussels with the power are unelected – they are appointed by Governments. So what is being proposed is to give the unelected officials power over national budgets!
More decisions in the Council of Ministers, the highest political authority in the EU, would be made by majority vote, thus preventing a single country or minor bloc from torpedoing European laws.
This would mean individual countries could be forced by a other countries into submitting to them. The day that happens, expect the EU to shrink dramatically.
“The eurozone crisis demonstrated with lethal force that Europe’s existing instruments of government are just not good enough to give the eurozone the speed of decision-making needed to weather the latest financial storm,” Klau said.
The problem is too much integration. The Euro integrated currency is a disaster.
One ambitious recommendation is for citizens to directly elect the president of the European Commission, the powerful executive, which oversees a budget of €147 billion ($229 billion) and enforces EU laws. He or she would also appoint his or her own team of commissioners.
That would be an improvement, but smaller states will be reluctant to sign up. The US model works because the Senate specifically is designed to protect smaller states. Same in Australia.