by Samir Amin 27 May 2014
The European construction was conceived in order to perpetuate unconstrained economic liberalism. As Giscard d’Estaing put it after the signature of the Maestrich treaty (1992): “socialism is now illegal”. That construction was non democratic from the start; it deprives the elected parliaments from any hope to be allowed to move out of the diktats of the non elected Brussel’s bureaucracy. With the emergence of financialized globalized monopolies, the European Union has become the instrument of the exclusive economic and political power of small oligarchies.
Yet this extreme liberal system is not viable. Its only motive is to perpetuate the endless concentration of wealth and power. At the cost of continuous austerity for the majorities, deterioration of public services, growing financial deficits and even stagnation. The exception (Germany to day) can only be so as long as the others accept their sad fate. The slogan “do like Germany” makes no sense; it cannot be reproduced
The European elections of May 2014 reflect the reject by the majorities of “that” Europe, even if the people are not aware that “another Europe” is not possible. More than half of the electorate abstained, more than 70% in Eastern Europe; 20% voted for Europhobic extreme right parties who headed in Britain and France; 6% voted for the radical left. But indeed the formal majority of those who voted still expressed their naïve belief of a possible reform of the system, a reform that the European constitution makes impossible
The ultra right vote is dangerous, for sure. As usually fascists do not address their critique to those who are responsible of the disaster, i.e. the monopolies; they transfer the debate to other areas and blame an escape goat, i.e. the immigrants! But that sad victory is for a good part the result of the lack of audacity of the radical left in their critique of the European system and proposals for change. They irrigated the wishful thinking hope for a reform
In my book “The implosion of contemporary capitalism” (2012) I have drawn the lines of that dramatic drift of Europe back to the 1930s. We would have a small “German” Europe, with the Eastern European semi colonies; France choosing a Vichy attitude and accepting to relate to it (but a later Gaullian reject remains possible); Britain more distant then ever from the European problems, deepening its integration into the Atlantic system dominated by the US; Italy and Spain hesitating between the submission to Berlin or looking toward London. The European elections express a step ahead in that direction.