Thursday, July 22, 2004

Europeans against Europe

Gerard Baker writes that European voters are expressing their skepticism of a Eurostate at the voting booth.
European voters--especially in the New Europe, which is alive and well, it should be noted--have good reason to react against the E.U.; there is a widespread view reflected in polls that it is out of touch, corrupt, and bureaucratic. Its economic policies stifle enterprise with complex regulations; its leading economies espouse high taxes and expensive welfare states even as the population ages rapidly. Above all, its Franco-German leadership still dreams of creating what amounts to a single, multination state, with its own foreign policy, that will make the E.U. much more effective at blocking U.S. policies.
To all this, most of Europe's voters said last month, politely, roughly what Dick Cheney said to Democratic senator Pat Leahy on the floor of the U.S. Senate.