Mr. Wolfgang Munchau of the Financial Times writes this week that the Irish are in danger of ruining their economic “miracle” based on the recent “NO” vote on the Lisbon Treaty referendum. Well Mr. Munchau, I think you discount the Irish and misunderstand the definition of “miracle”.
Wolfgang Munchau suggests in two recent articles that the Lisbon Treaty is destined to be ratified with or without the Irish, fair enough, but I don’t see how if the convoluted rules of the European Union state otherwise. Sure, as Munchau pointed out, The Republic of Ireland could be kicked out in some back room slick deal by an “unpredictable court,” but how is that good for the EU? What precedent and unintended consequences does that course of action suggest?
As an American who has lived in Ireland I am torn as to the best course for Ireland, I suppose on the one hand the “No” vote has signaled to the EU that it is a loose affiliation of States that has real limits on its ability to encroach on the sovereignty of a member. As well, the “No” vote signaled that the Treaty, even with the concessions to Ireland, was still stained with the lingering stench of Corporate Tax Harmonization… a nasty little phrase that means that France and Germany are tired of watching Free Market Capitalism work for such a small “insignificant” country (or the basic idea/rule/heuristic that lower taxes stimulate economic growth, and an educated labor pool keeps costs low by providing levels of efficiency and productivity).
On the other hand the “Yes” vote steers the EU towards a more realistic and streamlined decision making process. Basically, the “Yes” is what is best for the EU and the “No” is what is best for
Yes the rest of
Munchau in an attempt to understand the Irish Miracle has suggested that it is a matter of Corporatism, a Socialist pseudo-egalitarian concept that might be instructive in a classroom setting but looses its meaning when placed into a real world situation. The myriad of interests supposedly represented in a modern so-called Corporatist system can not possibly be satisfied in a complicated real world economy. But, to his credit Mr. Munchau does note that the one interest left out of this “system” is that of the EU. In the American South we would say that
Finally, in what can only be termed “grasping” Wolfgang Munchau also suggests that
The EU in its rush to be fair to all has seen the consequences of that fool’s errand. Utopian concepts will eventually be shown for what they are, and I believe what the road to Hell is paved with.