Monday, May 30, 2005

France Votes No

The Times of London:
"The milestones in the evolution of Europe are well-known, from the rise of Charlemagne to the Enlightenment to the Treaty of Rome in 1957 and future scholars will agree (eventually) that yesterday's 'non' in France is a defining moment for both that country and the continent. There is something particularly ironic, perhaps unappealing, about the eccentric coalition of Left and Right that proved the campaigning engine for this monumental defeat of the French elite. And yet this unholy alliance is itself a reflection of the fundamental and fatal ambiguities of a constitution that is not worth the hundreds of pages it is written on (the exact length varies with language)...

"Far more importantly, though, the EU proceeded towards a monetary union that has so far produced pathetic economic growth, an appalling lack of competitiveness in international trade, massive unemployment, the revival of protectionism and an atmosphere in which extremists of several stripes can happily flourish. The single greatest condemnation of the EU constitution is that it promised more of the same. This fate can be reversed after this referendum. 'C'est non'is surely clear."

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