July 27, 2011Posted by on
Newspeak is a fictional language in George Orwell’s famous novel Nineteen Eighty-Four. The aim of ‘Newspeak’ was to make subversive thought and speech impossible.
A euro based on supranational democracy would gain the highest credit ratings in all rating agencies worldwide, because their controlling chambers (civil organisations, businesses, workers and consumers) would have given it such a rating. Yet EU politicians want to apply party political internationalism, fighting a tide of adverse criticism that says it will not work. Despite their efforts at the Euro zone summit, US credit rating agencies have downgraded Greece because of the long-term loan swaps are considered a selective default.
The answer? “Honest conduct for an honest currency“. Honest conduct does not come from words alone. The control must be public and legal, not political. On 25 March 2010, the Heads of State and Government of the euro area issued a statement on unheaded paper that began with the following statement:
‘We reaffirm that all euro area members must conduct sound national policies in line with the agreed rules and should be aware of their shared responsibility for the economic and financial stability in the area.’
The paper is unheaded because the euro zone meetings are not officially part of the legal framework of the EU (Protocol 14 of the Lisbon Treaty allows them to meet ‘informally‘). A Statement issued on 21 July 2011 was published on paper headed ‘Council of the European Union’, but it was not a meeting of the Council of Ministers, the British, Poles, Hungarians, Danes, Swedes, Latvians, Lithuanians, Romanians, Bulgarians and Czechs were absent. When the Heads of State and Government of the euro zone ‘reaffirm their inflexible determination to honour fully their own individual sovereign signature‘, and add that ‘the credibility of all their sovereign signatures is a decisive element for ensuring financial stability in the euro area as a whole‘, they do so in a fraudulent document.
Government leaders are obliged to present their accounts for inspection in the so-called ‘European Semester’. This involved preventive and corrective aspects of the Stability and Growth Pact, a pledge central to the euro, and a legal requirement in treaties since Maastricht. But The European Commission who checks up on all the politicians and their sums is now composed entirely of politicians, not independent, competent personalities as the treaties require. The selection of the Commissioners is made by member state governments, with goverment ministers insisting that all candidates be party members and the Commissioners insisting on retaining party membership and attending party meetings.
Nearly all the States had distorted, corrupted or just ignored the Stability and Growth Pact. Among the first guilty Member States to do this were France and Germany. The Dutch and others protested saying that they were now paying for the Franco-German deficits. Other States got caught out later when the level of the statistical inexactitude became apparent. In a Community, moral values must be agreed by all. That is why Schuman and the other more politically honest Founding Fathers insisted that the Council should be open. Schuman wrote that
‘New Europe needs to have a democratic foundation. Its Councils, Committees and other organs should be placed under the control of public opinion, a control that should be efficient while not paralysing action nor useful initiatives.’
It is hard to argue that the current behaviour of politicians passes the democratic criterion. The definition of the European currency should be based on a full meaning of what is the common European good; not, as happened – what seemed good to a handful of politicians. The Stability and Growth Pact, which was not observed by Member States with few exceptions such as Luxembourg, is a poor approximation of what should be done.
Robert Schuman wrote a book, ‘For Europe’, incorporating some of his speeches explaining the principles of a new, more perfect form of democracy that would unite the existing European democracies in a supranational European Community. These comments here draw on that founding philosophy that united Europe’s Allies and former enemies in a constructive new entity.