Barroso Says EU Will Overcome
By Staff News & Analysis - September 29, 2011

Union faces huge crisis of confidence, admits Barroso … In his annual "State of the Union" speech today (28 September), Commission President José Manuel Barroso admitted that the EU was confronted with the most serious crisis of confidence in its history and outlined proposals for moving toward an economic union, calling EU leaders to support further integration. Barroso said that the economic downturn, coupled with a deep crisis of confidence in EU leaders and their capacity to find solutions, was the greatest challenge in the history of the European project. – EurActive

Dominant Social Theme: It is challenging, considering that half of Europe is bust and the other half doesn't want to make a bailout. But these are incidental problems if we have the will. Politics always trumps the market and any other result is merely the result of a lack of leadership.

Free-Market Analysis: EU Commission President José Manuel Barroso, once a Maoist, has given yet another stirring speech, hoping to rally the party faithful. In the speech, he revealed three separate financial approaches that Eurocrats hope will raise revenue.

As a young man, Barroso believed in fairly radical dosages of government power and when it comes to the efficacy of government nothing seems to have changed much. He and the rest of the EU's top Eurocrats continue to believe that they can muscle the European Union forward in spite of a skeptical trading community and an unwilling electoral community.

The mainstream media does not do much to debunk Barroso's ideas or ideology. In Euroland, politics trump the Invisible Hand and legislative dictates are seen as just as legitimate as free-market expressions of communal direction. This point of view increasingly is seen across the pond in America as well.

It is a typically European approach to shaping social structures, however, emphasizing elite rule and the power of a small group of (mostly) men to take even unpopular decisions regarding sociopolitical configurations. This sort of elitist conceit has reached its apex in the latter days of the EU, with whole countries being compelled several times – as Ireland was – until the desired result is reached.

This sort of behavior is on display in Greece as well where tens of thousands have actively resisted "austerity" measures to counteract the sovereign debt crisis to no avail, thus far. It is not merely an elite meme – that the few know what is best for the many – it is also seemingly a belief system that the top Eurocrats themselves embrace.

Many dominant social themes are fear-based mechanisms designed to push middle classes into giving up wealth and power to internationalist institutions designed to replace local and regional ones. But the handful of central banking families that produce these memes likely don't believe in them. It's different when it comes to efficacy of elite rule and its appropriateness.

It seems very clear that the powers-that-be subscribe to the idea that they have been chosen to deliver appropriate direction to the masses. This sense that one has a kind of divine right to rule was supposed to have dissipated years ago – at least last century – but the EU's top people obviously believe they are Charlemagne's second coming.

The only reason they could believe this is because they have the backing of money power – endless torrents of central banking fiat paper controlled by a handful of individuals at the apex of the Anglosphere power elite. But what they may not realize is that they too are perhaps being manipulated, that those who seek to run the world via military force and political unions will betray their enablers without a backwards glance.

This is an elemental understanding that even velvet thugs like Barroso seem to fail to understand. Money power has provided him with a position where he can make the demands he wants and even achieve many results. But eventually, if things don't work out, it is Barroso and his colleagues who are on the front lines, not the great banking families. Barroso will be easily sacrificed.

Right now, of course, Barosso looks far from being a sacrificial victim. He makes demands with the practiced ease of one who is used to wielding power and being obeyed. If the EU needs to abrogate treaties or change their definition, he seems to imply that is entirely within his ken.

What he and the others want to have happen, will. One begins to get the feeling that the hard-fought passage of these treaties, supposedly binding EU countries to certain courses of action, are not taken as seriously by Barroso et al. as by the countries themselves.

If the EU needs to issue bonds, for instance, then suddenly a way to do so is discovered even though bonds are clearly a joint activity between EU nations and thus puts the EU in the position of being a "united" nation of Euro-nations.

In fact, nothing much has so far stopped Barroso from forging ahead. His arrogance is as vast as his certainty that he can force the EU experiment to conform to political rather than market realities. The EU will not be allowed to fragment because Barroso and the other Eurocrats know best. Here's some more from the article:

"Many of our citizens are afraid of the future. There is, like never before, a danger of national egoism prevailing, not to speak of nationalism," said Barroso, speaking in French in the Strasbourg plenary. Populist responses put in jeopardy the biggest achievements of the European Union: the euro, the single market, even the freedom of movement …

However difficult, Barroso said that solutions to the crisis existed. "Europe has a future", he said, adding that this depended on the availability of political will and political leadership on behalf of the national leaders. "Let's be completely clear – the problems we have in Europe today do not come because of the European institutions. The problems that we have in Europe today come because of narrow national interests," Barroso stated.

He criticised leaders for not making the case in support of the euro to national audiences. "But we have to ask them 'Did you make the case for Europe? Did you make the case for the euro? Did you explain to your citizens what we have to lose if we do not keep our strong commitment to our common achievements?' So we need to make the case for Europe," he said.

Barroso, the article tells us, offered little that was concrete and much that was general. But even his general concepts could be seen as incendiary. He said that The Commission would make a proposal for a unified external representation of the euro area.

What this means, apparently, is that The Commission wants to be empowered to make decisions for the euro area as a whole. As part of this plan, the President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy is to be given a new role of eurozone chair "at the level of heads of state and government."

Barroso also indicated that The Commission will present ideas having to do with so-called stability bonds. The implication was that these 'stability bonds' would not require a change of EU treaties – though it's as yet unclear, he said, as to whether that's the case. The impression left, nonetheless, was that Barroso and the others will define the legality of past treaties, and reinterpret the language as necessary.

The third recommendation in Barroso's speech was even more controversial than the second. He stated The Commission had just adopted a proposal for a Financial Transaction Tax, one that supposedly would create maybe US$85 billion a year. While Barroso announced this with a good deal of certainty, he's already being challenged by groups such as BusinessEurop and various political parties at both ends of the spectrum.

Barroso in his own person embodies dominant social themes having to do with the primacy of legislative resolve over market reality and the role that "leadership" can play in creating environments that the elites are comfortable establishing and maintaining.

What Barroso et al. may not understand is that they are very close to the precipice now; or at least they may not want to admit it. They are the enablers of globalism but their familial backers, the ones that actually control the world's financial mechanisms, will throw them over in an instant if it is necessary.

Barroso probably believes that he is doing what is necessary to maintain power and stability within the universe of elite expectations. But there are other ways that the world can be shoved toward global governance. Political unions are appropriate but chaos is equally effective, if not more so.

The people at the very top of the EU experiment probably do want it to succeed, but would be equally happy to let it unravel if such an unraveling is the path of least resistance. The goal is the impoverishment of the middle class, the general misery of society and the presentation of internationalist solutions as a necessary corollary of survival.

It is highly unlikely that Barroso will get what he wants, or even part of it. The rot in the EU seems too pervasive at this point, the solutions both overly Draconian and too scanty at the same time. How then to understand why Barroso and the rest still continue to generate them?

They are cocooned in money power and have no expectation their positions will come to an end. They cannot conceive of it and their patrons have not mentioned it. They have allowed themselves to believe their task is a historical one and their victory preordained. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Until the bitter end Barroso and the rest will continue to act on the assumption of a kind of royal privilege. They will continue to believe that because they are the chosen enablers of money power, they cannot be defeated. But the power they exercise actually resides elsewhere and can be withdrawn abruptly and at will.

There is an alternative explanation, of course, which is that Barroso and the others at the top of the EU are now actively working for its demise in order to create a maximum amount of Euro-chaos on the way to implementing an even more Draconian and internationalist regime. This is a possibility, given the logical outcome of their actions, and the pushback of PiGS citizens. However the unwinding of the euro plays out, it will be messy.

After Thoughts

Right now Barroso and the rest seem almost godlike in terms of their assumptions over what they can and cannot accomplish and how they can bend the rules. But failure is a harsh mistress and if the EU experiment continues to unravel even those at the very top may be in for a rude awakening.

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