Is the European union bad or good?
I can not believe the number of Americans that have skepticism about the EU. I even had one of my friends say, who knows in the future the US could have an armed conflict with the EU. Right, I can see British troops landing in Boston. People say the EU is socialist or a dictatorship or it is not a country so who cares. There are so many fears and closed minds about the European Union. It makes me ashamed sometimes to be an American. Some Americans are so into conspiracy theories, rather than look objectively at issues. Therefore, I thought I would write a post to set the facts straight. I am an American and EU citizen. If you love America you will love the EU because the ideal are the same, democracy and freedom and promotion of the common good.
Why the EU is good
- Peaceful – When nations trade together they make peace not war. Think about European and world history. Think about the armed conflict where so many people have suffered. The history of the European Union was started out of the a cooperation of the steel and coal industries in Europe in the 1950s between France and Germany with the specific purpose of preventing war by cooperation. Is there any thing bad about this?
- The European Union donates money to charity – The EU give more money than any other organization or nation to charity. Think about Haiti, an US neighbor, the EU gave many times more.
- Free movement of labor – Imagine the USA where residents of Connecticut could not work in New York without a work visa? What a ridiculous mess and extension of bureaucracy this would be. As an EU citizen you can work anywhere and both entrepreneurs benefit as well as workers. If I am an entrepreneur, I have a greater selection of talented workers to choose from as a business owner or more companies to choose from.
- Free movement of capital – Trade barriers and tariffs and restrictions to opening businesses are not good for anyone. If you want to know what works for people to become rich and happy, reduce the restrictions of government trade. The EU is a large free and open market.
- Rich European countries help the poor – Is there anything wrong about this? Many of the Eastern European countries that had communism holding them back and did not benefit from the Marshall plan, now can have a fair chance to develop. I see new trams, educational projects, art funding many nice things coming to countries that really suffered under communism.
- EU promotes good ethical values – It promotes culture, helps the poor, protects the environment. It promotes humanistic value, while respecting religions.
- The EU is fun - With an EU citizenship you can live and travel anywhere. I could vacation in Sweden or spend the winter in Greece. I think a free exchange of culture and tourist makes people happy. Don’t you like to travel without visa restrictions and applications and fees? I do.
- EU accepts many languages – In the USA there are people that feel that English should be the official language. Why? What if someday 90% of the people are Spanish. A democracy represents the people not empowers a status quo. I like hearing different languages, it is fun, hearing just English all the time get boring.
Why the EU is bad?
- It might become too powerful – It could grow to be too big and become like the USA or Ancient Rome, a huge centralized bureaucracy. Right now it is more a confederation. However, so could any company, country or organization that does not mean people should participate in a community. It is expanding even outside of Europe, but it would not be bad to have the EU as a large government. It is a peaceful, free organization.
- The EU is socialist – I am basically a libertarian. I believe small government is the best government. But the EU is not socialist. It is a parliamentary lose government that tries to help poor regions of Europe develop just like the USA does or any nation does that cares about its citizens. Offering free education to its citizens is not exactly socialist, the USA does this to 18 so what is wrong with extending this to 21?
- The EU is anti-religion – I am religious, I live in the EU and I do see their focus on humanistic values and it does not promote the Christian religion, but the same is in the USA.
How the USA and the EU are different
- In the USA there is a greater emphasis on individual liberty, in the EU there is a greater emphasis on the common good.
- The USA has a strong president, a mini king so to speak, effective for war and fast changes. Europe is parliamentary, more power is in the hands of the elected representatives, effective for minority opinions.
- The USA is a country, the EU is not a country but an agreement between countries. Why does that matter? What matters is that a government whether a national government or a governing body ensure peace and promotes good.
You can see that from my post I am very pro EU. If you think about all the war and hurt that was in Europe in the past 100 years I think citizens of the world would be very wise to support a community that represents democracy, free trade and labor movement and gives an inordinate amount to charity and development of poor regions.