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Thread: Germany leads the EU

  1. #1
    Politics.ie Member Al.'s Avatar
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    Default Germany rules the EU

    Even the editors at the Washington Post acknowledge that...(late edit: the paper missed the fact that it's actually de jure instead of de facto)
    Europe's quiet leader

    By Anne Applebaum
    Tuesday, November 3, 2009


    Did you know that there were elections in Germany a month ago? Were you aware that the German Socialists were soundly defeated? Had you realized that there was now a new government in Germany? No? Then give credit — both for the victory and the fact that you haven't heard about it — to Angela Merkel, chancellor of Germany. ...

    ... (P)artly by default and partly by design, Merkel is now the de facto leader of Europe. Over in Britain, Gordon Brown's Labour Party is immolating itself. Over in France, President Nicolas Sarkozy's attention-deficit issues propel him from one project to the next, to the irritation of everybody. The Italian prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, is under endless investigation, and everyone else is too small or too preoccupied to compete. Even when the European Union chooses its next president later this year, he (and it almost certainly will be a he) will find it extremely difficult to do anything that contradicts the wishes of Merkel, who regularly tops lists of the world's most powerful women.

    In fact, the more I watch her, the more I am convinced that her femaleness holds the key to her success. Under her watch, Germany has continued to grow more powerful, more influential, more dominant than ever before. Yet not only has no one noticed, they applaud and ask for more. ...

    If, in the coming months, she wants a bigger, louder role outside Germany, Merkel can probably have that, too. I'm not sure, though, that "big and loud" is quite her style. It's equally possible that she will take over European foreign policy — but so quietly and so politely that no one will notice.
    Last edited by Al.; 17th August 2012 at 08:32 AM. Reason: Removal of defunct formatting tags
    "Laws were most numerous when the state was most corrupt." —Tacitus

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    Quote Originally Posted by Al. View Post
    Even the editors at the Washington Post acknowledge that...
    Consider the EU to be a Bus ....

    Germany & France are co-drivers steering it
    The UK is hanging off the back bumper precariously
    And the rest are Passengers looking out the windows .... some up the front and some down the back where the hard chaws always sit

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    In other news, Germany is the largest economy in Europe, and would be a dominant country in any Europe that didn't include breaking it up into bits.

    In any Europe without the EU, small countries like Ireland wouldn't actually be on the bus - we'd be standing by the roadside hoping to sell a couple of eggs while our daughters flashed their goods at the (compared to us) wealthy passengers. Nostalgie de la boue, people.
    Never let the best be the enemy of the good.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ibis View Post
    In other news, Germany is the largest economy in Europe, and would be a dominant country in any Europe that didn't include breaking it up into bits.

    In any Europe without the EU, small countries like Ireland wouldn't actually be on the bus - we'd be standing by the roadside hoping to sell a couple of eggs while our daughters flashed their goods at the (compared to us) wealthy passengers. Nostalgie de la boue, people.
    Ah, but we do have the EU and we are on the Bus .. .tho prob sitting up the very front holding onto our Bus Ticket and looking all innocent like good non descript 1st year Secondary Students

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ah Well View Post
    Ah, but we do have the EU and we are on the Bus .. .tho prob sitting up the very front holding onto our Bus Ticket and looking all innocent like good non descript 1st year Secondary Students
    Or possibly down the back throwing up our nagan...
    Never let the best be the enemy of the good.

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    Politics.ie Member Panopticon's Avatar
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    I would rather have the Germans exercising foreign policy leadership in the EU than the British, French or Italians. They take principled stances on issues and avoid colonial or attention-seeking expansionism.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ibis View Post
    Or possibly down the back throwing up our nagan...
    No, we wouldn't be allowed down there ... unless the tough lads wanted us for their amusement or something

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    Politics.ie Member Al.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ah Well View Post
    Consider the EU to be a Bus ....Germany & France are co-drivers steering it
    Germany's always been the driver. France is the conductor, or maybe the inspector, but never the driver.
    Quote Originally Posted by ibis View Post
    In any Europe without the EU, small countries like Ireland wouldn't actually be on the bus
    Maybe it's the wrong bus. The Celtic Tiger came to be without riding that bus, but by getting on that bus, the tiger lost its stripes and now the Eagle (as in Adler) is picking at its bones.

    As for the latter part of that post, very demeaning. Is that what you think of yourself?
    Quote Originally Posted by panopticon View Post
    I would rather have the Germans exercising foreign policy leadership in the EU than the British, French or Italians. They take principled stances on issues and avoid colonial or attention-seeking expansionism
    ?? You have that completely backwards. Germany's the most colonial and expansionist of any country in the EU. As I mentioned in the thread about zu Guttenberg, Germany's been entrenched in Afghanistan since the 1920s; they're also deeply entrenched in Africa, e.g. Rwanda and parts of the former Zaïre. They're also behind the Tibet and Xinjiang uprisings, as well as many upheavals in South America. They were the cause of the conflict in the former Yugoslavia, which resulted in the EU taking on big chunks of the Balkans (and if that doesn't sound like a repeat of history, I don't know what does).
    Last edited by Al.; 14th November 2009 at 03:20 AM.
    "Laws were most numerous when the state was most corrupt." —Tacitus

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    Politics.ie Member Panopticon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Al. View Post
    You have that completely backwards. Germany's the most colonial and expansionist of any country in the EU. As I mentioned in the thread about zu Guttenberg, Germany's been entrenched in Afghanistan since the 1920s; they're also deeply entrenched in Africa, e.g. Rwanda and parts of the former Zaïre. They're also behind the Tibet and Xinjiang uprisings, as well as many upheavals in South America. They were the cause of the conflict in the former Yugoslavia, which resulted in the EU taking on big chunks of the Balkans (and if that doesn't sound like a repeat of history, I don't know what does).
    Do you have any sources for that screed, which appears to my unenlightened eyes to be paranoid nonsense?

  10. #10

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    Do you think that possibly there is a dawning realisation in the US that maybe Germany has got it right over the last decade or so?
    See the piece by Paul Krugman in today's NYT:
    Consider, for a moment, a tale of two countries. Both have suffered a severe recession and lost jobs as a result — but not on the same scale. In Country A, employment has fallen more than 5 percent, and the unemployment rate has more than doubled. In Country B, employment has fallen only half a percent, and unemployment is only slightly higher than it was before the crisis. Don’t you think Country A might have something to learn from Country B?

    This story isn’t hypothetical. Country A is the United States, where stocks are up, G.D.P. is rising, but the terrible employment situation just keeps getting worse. Country B is Germany,
    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/13/op...n.html?_r=1&hp

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