Victor Hugo, Europe United, “Mais Non”


This week on Facebook: Having began the year on the topic of the EU I was attracted to an article published in Europe’s Journal of Psychology  (EJOP) — Vol 1, No 4 (2005) with the title ‘The French Vision of Europe from Victor Hugo’s United States of Europe to the No to the Constitution’ from which this week’s extracts have been taken. The EJOP contribution by Michel Viegnes offers an insight into the French psyche and the influence that Victor Hugo continues to have on it.

This EJOP article is rather long, which I have made it more readable by breaking down the paragraphs, some editorial arrangements and adding a number of links. However, despite these modifications, the paper is still intended to represent the views as written by the author. Should you wish to read the published article in EJOP, a link to it is also included below. Read more of this post

Mais Non!


Finally, the French NO at the 2005 referendum that was a serious drawback for the construction of a real political Europe, if not a lethal strike. It brought together distinct political forces and even conflicting ones, in the shared fear that the identity of Europe (from the French perspective) would be subsumed in a world that is always growing more and more globalised. For those who said NO, whether they came from the right or the left, the constitutional model led to an American globalisation that is simultaneously fascinating and detested, religious and mercantile it is seen as the driving force of this internationalism. One where historical identities seem to be brought into a global culture that is consumerist and technological and in which, former powers of the old continent can no longer play a major role by themselves. Read more of this post

United States of Europe


It is startling to see that Hugo has a rather singular view on the European issue when compared with great authors and intellectuals of the 19th century. It is not until the next century and primarily not until the great catastrophe of the 1914/18 war that one could hear in France important figures giving their opinion on the European idea. Whether we should regret it or not, the perspectives on this are very dissimilar. Read more of this post

Liberté Égalité Fraternité


For Hugo, the single guarantee of inviolable peace was the normal state of work, that is the exchange, the offer and the demand, the production and the consumption, the vast common effort, the attraction of industries, the circulation of ideas, the human flux and reflux. Indeed, this confidence in the rationality of the market, in what Adam Smith called the invisible hand, this certainty that economic freedom engenders or consolidates civic freedoms are typically Anglo-Saxon. They are not part of the French tradition, although France had its own brilliant defenders, especially in the encyclopaedic movement of the 18th century with Quesnay and Turgot. But we should remember that the Former Regime was extremely directive: today, each time the French State launches great initiatives in order to stimulate the economy, we speak of Colbertism. Read more of this post

Hugo’s Dream of Unification


We can notice these days, following the 60th anniversary of the United Nations, that Hugo primarily justifies the idea of a Union of European states by the need to preserve peace, as the ONU Charter did in 1946; Europe should first be a space without war, its genius should imagine nonviolent solutions for unavoidable litigation. Read more of this post

The Peace Congress of Paris, August 1849


This great idea of Europe, Hugo publicly expressed for the first time in the opening discourse at the first Peace Congress, held in Paris, 21st of August 1849. These Peace Congresses were a privileged context for Hugo’s reflection on Europe; he will have the occasion to come back to this theme in his speeches for the Peace Congress of Lausanne (1869) and that of Lugano (1872). Read more of this post

Fake News


Today on Facebook: I recently researched a quote attributed to Jean Monnet, a quote repeated so often that it is blindly accepted as being true. It is perhaps, the conspiracy theorist and peddler of myths David Icke that I should thank for prompting me to research this particular ‘fake news’, but then Fredrick Forsyth is certainly not considered (at least by readers of The Daily Express) as a ‘conspiracy theorist’ and peddler of myths.

The latter link is an example of the spreading of ‘fake news’ by those who want to propagate it as being true (even if they know, or suspect, that it is fake). Here I must confess my own inclination to believe that a politician (in this case Jean Monnet), is likely to reveal such a thing in a moment of indiscretion. Researching this quotation shows not only the plethora of fake news on social media sites and those — who may be regarded as ‘credible’ contributors propagating it —  but also how easy it is to dupe people. Read more of this post

Taxation: A Safe Haven?


This week on Facebook: Is yet another leader to my thoughts on global economics and how they are likely to effect the common man. Last November I posted ‘Trouble in Paradise?’ followed by Ethics and the Law and on New Year’s Eve I posted ‘Tax Havens: A Red Herring?’, introducing last week’s post EU & Tax Havens. This week introduces tax haven revelations as the precursor to the notion of a global economic war. Read more of this post

EU & Tax Havens


This week on Facebook: My Facebook Newsline in the year 2017 had more than its share of articles (often), memes (more often) and ‘shares’ (even more often) on the consequences of leaving the EU. I declared my ambivalence towards the EU a long time ago and didn’t vote in the Brexit referendum (nor in the consequential general election). I found the implied portrayal of the EU as a light unto the world as disingenuous a representation as that of the notionally democratic regime offered by Brexit.  Read more of this post

Tax Havens: A Red Herring?


Today on Facebook: Humour? Enough already — tomorrow (Monday) is the first day of the New Year and may 2018 be a prosperous one for you all! Read more of this post

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The Bulletin

This site was created for members and friends of My Telegraph blog site, but anyone is welcome to comment, and thereafter apply to become an author.

TCWG Short Stories

Join our monthly competition and share story ideas...

The Real Economy

Hello, I’m Ed Conway, Economics Editor of Sky News, and this is my website. Blogposts, stuff about my books and a little bit of music

Public Law for Everyone

Professor Mark Elliott

Bleda

Am I my Brothers keeper?

An Anthology of Short Stories

Selected by other writers

davidgoodwin935

The Short Stories of David Goodwin (Capucin)

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