They say the problem with wise men is that they are so clever that they see all sides of an issue and can’t make up their minds about anything.
By that definition, the current Euro crisis must mean I am very wise! Because I am both bothered and bewildered and given how much time I am spending reading comment and blogs, quite possibly bewitched too.
I can’t make up my mind whether David Cameron’s decision to effectively veto the treaty is a good or a bad thing.
On the one hand it has to be good, as I am a long-standing Euro-sceptic (that is a sceptic of the long-term feasibility of the Euro, rather than a general sceptic of Europe). I just don’t understand how you can have a single currency without a single fiscal policy, nor a single fiscal policy without a single tax policy and a single tax policy without single political structures. In other words, it is fine for a united states of Europe, but not for a group of nation states. And a group of nation states is still fundamentally what Europe is.
So our decision to keep out of the Euro mess has to be right. I tend to agree with Boris Johnson that what is happening in Europe is a bit like treating the cancer and destroying the patient. If the essence of the problem is a restrictive single currency that cannot accommodate the needs of a heterogeneous group of states, then yet more integration seems to be compounding the error.
Great, so I do approve. Well done Prime Minister!
How can it be good for us to be so absolutely marginalised in Europe? It is all very well sticking up for the interests of the City (I think), but if we are outside a tightly integrated Euro-zone and have no influence over its decision making, then the future looks bleak indeed? Surely that group will make it very difficult for international companies located in London to do business within their zone. London will not be a place from which you can do financial business in Europe – do you stick with a market of 60 million or opt to locate within a market of 300 million?
And so my conclusion???
Bad night’s work, Mr Cameron. You were right to keep us out of an ever more tightly integrated Europe, but surely, somehow we could have done this without alienating everyone? Splendid isolation was fine when we had an ‘splendid’ empire, but now we are just isolated.
Even a wise man can see that can’t be good.