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Euro elections: Searching for President Nemo

Patrick L Young is expert in global financial markets working in multiple disciplines, ranging from trading independently to running exchanges.

Published time: April 29, 2014 08:56
An European Union flag flutters outside of the European Parliament in Brussels (Reuters / Francois Lenoir)

​The European Parliament is at the most productive part of its four-year cycle. Instead of adding more stifling rules, politicians are out seeking re-election to the ridiculous Brussels/Strasbourg gravy train.

Thus Europeans are spared the indignity of more useless micromanaging regulation destroying employment and the economy for at least two months every four years.

Thousands of candidates across 28 nations are chasing a resource-rich (i.e. expenses-laden) opportunity to micromanage Europe to destitution. EU apathy continues to accelerate: since introducing direct elections in 1979, voter turnout has been in constant decline ever since.

The end May pan-European elections will see a broad swathe of apathy from east to west, despite desperate federalist attempts to stir up interest. In one vacuous ploy to create electoral momentum, three leading political groupings have nominated candidates who might gain one of the posts marked ‘president’ within the staggering unaccountable Brussels bureaucracy (other groups have sensibly heaped derision on the idea).

At least one form of Euro-harmonization has been achieved. All three deluded ‘presidential’ candidates are essentially impossible to discern. As swathes of online videos demonstrate, most Europeans can’t recognize any of them.

Thus a form of false presidential election is being fought by three people who, frankly (having never seen them all in the same room), I suspect are the same man. These dull, wonkish candidates maintain a blithe regard to the fact nobody has ever heard of them. They are so similar that there is barely a cigarette paper of difference between them. (N.B. The previous sentence is in clear violation of EU ordinances as it could be construed as promoting smoking and also, heinously, endorses an alternative measurement system to metric). Classic machine politicians from the European lowlands, their position on the left-right scale is subsumed by Europhilia (they are all corporate socialists: adding ‘big’ to anything. Well, except ‘growth’).

Most importantly, they all subscribe to one totalitarian overarching credo: whatever the issue, the only solution is more Europe.

Martin Schulz (Reuters / Thomas Peter)

Given that this increasingly demented Europhilia has delivered two decades where Europe has appreciably underperformed both Asia and North America, those harboring a tinge of economic sanity might regard that as grounds for a change of plan alone. However, note the key point above, the only solution hard-wired into the Single Europhile Brain Cell is: more Europe. Resistance is futile.

Or maybe not.

Unsurprisingly, many voters, mired in the EU stasis of the north or the euro depression in the south, reckon Europe isn’t working.

This leading candidate trio includes Martin Schulz, a crazed center-left Europhile of old school socialist traditions, who, like the arguably even more fundamentalist Liberal Guy Verhofstadt, is forever fighting a self-perceived war against the bigotry of nationalism. The tricky bit is how bigoted they are when it comes to any of the multitude of justifiable criticisms against the fetidly corrupt Euro apparatus. If that sounds akin to a trip down totalitarian dogma memory lane, then far be it from me to differ.

Alongside a Saarland German, we have the (almost obligatory) line-up of former Belgian and Luxembourg prime ministers: Guy Verhofstadt and Jean-Claude Juncker respectively. Each is at the center of an electoral charade/conceit: criss-crossing Europe campaigning for a presidency which will eventually be decided at one of those lavish dinners where national leaders traditionally suspend democracy and the ‘Buggins’ turn’ system of proportional representation is deployed to allocate key posts.

Meritocracy is very much secondary to Europhilia in Brussels, as evidenced by Britain’s Cathy Ashdown, whose occupancy of the foreign portfolio has resembled an artless prank. Regardless of the ‘popular’ vote, expect the various presidents to be chosen via the usual behind closed doors botch up, as Mrs. Merkel has already clearly hinted.

Astute readers may wonder how growing Euroskepticism will influence the new parliament? In a direct swipe against democracy, the usual EU rules will apply: ignore the problem, ridicule the complaints and press for more Europe! Given that the answer is always “More Europe!” the three leading parties will suspend left-right ideological differences to concentrate on their single state delusion.

Given that the European Parliament could be 25, even 30 percent explicitly critical - if not outright skeptical - of the EU’s vast failings, readers may wish to ponder just how the EU can claim to have any remote attachment to the democracy it wishes to foist on others when its own process has become a travesty.

Meanwhile Europe continues to waste taxpayers’ money in the search for President Nobody.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.