Today in Europe (March 25) is the birthday of the European Union (EU). What began as a force for peace in a Europe ravaged by two enormously destructive wars - the Union's founders firmly believed that by pooling their sovereignty, France and Germany could avoid a fourth war inside a century -- it started out simply enough as a coordinating organisation for coal and steel production in the six member states, and for a short while became a promoter of free trade within Europe (based on the idea, as summarised by Frederic Bastiat, that "if goods don't cross borders then armies will"), then just as rapidly morphed into the illiberal poster-Nanny that it is today for protectionism, mercantilism and rampant and faceless uber-bureaucracy.
Pacific Empire has a short summary of the Brussells-based bureaucracy. The Times calls it a "birthday to forget." The Telegraph says there were "smiles, but EU's party can't hide divisions," and notes that, the EU is "unloved and mistrusted, even by the French."
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