Pat Condell: A knighthood for Andy Choudary

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Milton Friedman’s voorspelling over de Euro (1997)

The United States is an example of a situation that is favorable to a common currency. Though composed of fifty states, its residents overwhelmingly speak the same language, listen to the same television programs, see the same movies, can and do move freely from one part of the country to another; goods and capital move freely from state to state; wages and prices are moderately flexible; and the national government raises in taxes and spends roughly twice as much as state and local governments. Fiscal policies differ from state to state, but the differences are minor compared to the common national policy. […]
By contrast, Europe’s common market exemplifies a situation that is unfavorable to a common currency. It is composed of separate nations, whose residents speak different languages, have different customs, and have far greater loyalty and attachment to their own country than to the common market or to the idea of “Europe.”Despite being a free trade area, goods move less freely than in the United States, and so does capital. The European Commission based in Brussels, indeed, spends a small fraction of the total spent by governments in the member countries. […]
As of today, a subgroup of the European Union — perhaps Germany, the Benelux countries, and Austria — come closer to satisfying the conditions favorable to a common currency than does the EU as a whole. […]
The drive for the Euro has been motivated by politics not economics. The aim has been to link Germany and France so closely as to make a future European war impossible, and to set the stage for a federal United States of Europe. I believe that adoption of the Euro would have the opposite effect. It would exacerbate political tensions by converting divergent shocks that could have been readily accommodated by exchange rate changes into divisive political issues. Political unity can pave the way for monetary unity. Monetary unity imposed under unfavorable conditions will prove a barrier to the achievement of political unity.

Milton Friedman, 1997

‘De democratie wordt geofferd op het altaar van de muntunie’

Wie denkt dat de nationale democratie zomaar door een Europese democratie vervangen kan worden, bedrijft een gevaarlijke illusiepolitiek. Een Europese democratie ter vervanging van de nationale is, als die er ooit al komen kan, per definitie een project van de lange adem, omdat Europa voorlopig geen demos heeft. Daarom gaat die volledige politieke unie er ook niet komen en wordt nu, via de achterdeur en zonder verdragswijziging, wel geprobeerd de nationale democratie nog verder in te perken.

Feit is dat de huidige muntunie eerder antidemocratisch te noemen is en dat de huidige plannen ook helemaal niet voorzien in een serieuze democratisering. De economische contracten zijn bindend, ook tegen de wil van de nationale democratische meerderheid in. [bron]

Bastiaan van Apeldoorn,  politiek econoom en doceert Internationale Betrekkingen (VU)