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Friday, September 14, 2012

Bailouts, Bond-Buying: E.U. Plows Ahead!

On September 12, 2012, a psychological threshold was reached in the E.U. on the way toward “ever closer union.” That is to say, at the end of that day Europeans could feel an overdue sense that come what may, the euro would be protected. Moreover, the E.U. (at least for the states willing to sign up for greater E.U. enforcement of state deficit and debt limits) would proceed along with further incremental shifts of governmental sovereignty from the states to the union thereof. The sense of relief was palpable in Europe as state and federal officials as well as commentators and citizens breathed a collective sigh of relief.
Most pressingly, the constitutional court of the state of Germany announced that that state could in fact contribute to the fund to bailout indebted states. The court held that the state legislature would have to pass any increases because the further integration of the E.U. must not be allowed to proceed without commensurate democratic legitimacy and the rule of law. The President of the E.U. Parliament observed that this holds at the E.U. level as well.

The complete essay is at Essays on Two Federal Empires.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Should Catalonia Be a New E.U. State?

                                      Catalons rally in favor of secession from the state of Spain.     Globalpost.com

A crowd estimated at 1.5 million rallied in Barcelona on September 11, 2012 to urge the secession of the Catalonia region from the E.U. state of Spain. I put it this way because the fact that Spain was at the time a semi-sovereign state of the European Union mitigates the importance of whether Catalonia becomes a separate state or not. Similarly, the Egypt region of the U.S. state of Illinois had thrice in the history of Illinois hosted a movement to secede from that republic to form a new state in the U.S.

Whether a Catalonia in the E.U. or Egypt in the U.S., the fact that federal law would presumably still apply lessens the impact of the change, especially in the U.S. because of all of the competencies or domains that had been claimed by the Union at the expense of the powers of the state governments (something the Europeans have been assiduously trying to avoid).


The full essay is in Essays on the E.U. Political Economy, available in print and as an ebook at Amazon.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Should Entitlement Programs Be Cut?

If human beings have survival among our inalienable rights as citizens for whom both rights and duties apply, then we as a society must grapple with how sustenance can be guaranteed to those among us who are not meeting their own needs. I put it this way to highlight the lack of conditionality in the right. That is to say, if it is inalienable, then it is irrelevant whether the person is lazy or of a bad temperament.

The entire essay is at "Should Entitlement Programs Be Cut?"