@handvat@lemmy.ml
1
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14d

The EU is democratic but I feel like I have no idea what’s going on compared to the democracy in my country.

For the national government I am able to vote for a party and follow all live debates on television and the internet. The (national) news usually reports on important decisions being made and important debates happening. They provide us with a summary on what happened and so on. How our democratic state exactly works is all taught on schools.

But for the European Union? I know I get to vote for a party once in a while, with almost all parties having a similar name and stances on subjects as the parties in the parliament. But what happens next is unclear to me. These national parties seem to join up with the national parties of other countries with similar views? I suppose they debate once in a while in Brussels? And there is this Ursula von Leyen who seems a very important person with the EU, but what here role is? No idea. All I know is that, once every while, the EU creates or updates one of its regulations. These then have to be implemented by each of the member states.

All which our school teaches is that there is an EU, it gives a short overview over its history and they tell us about their goals. But what happens between election and the creation of regulations? I have no idea.

Nevertheless, I usually agree with the decisions the EU makes and I’m in favour of the EU as a power house against the USA and China, for example. The euro, free trade and free travel are all things I take for granted, I could not imagine my life without them. In my opinion, they are worth the taxes and so on. I just whished that some countries, including my own, the Netherlands, could be more relaxed when it comes to having to pay money to poorer countries in the EU. And the EU should definitely be more strict against states that are de jure democracies, but are turning into de facto dictatorships.

Living in a country inside as a (white) individual is mostly beneficial as others mentioned already. One problem lies in the structural component: The EU is rooted in highly liberal (in the political sense) values regarding market and trade and NOT in the collective or common of the european people.

Enforcing the former leads to loads of economic problems, for example Germany being the major exporting country which contributes heavily to wage dumping. That export surplus prevents other states like Italy or Greece from regenerating their economy and keeps them low as their options of controlling imports (e. g. Through tariffs) are limited or not allowed, thus further cementing disparities between countries. Besides, there is a rising tide of far right movements in the EU happening which might be related to the economic instability and insecurity a heavy market liberalisation brings.

sтυx⚡
91M

Overall I think it’s a good idea. It does need much much work though but the general idea of a more united front. I don’t like borders or the ‘country’ defenition… Together we can accomplish much more I think!

I think the Euro currency is a good thing, as a kid I didn’t get the ‘Gulden’ really it was not logical. This way it gets at least much easier when traveling just a few KM into another “country” aka a piece of land a little further away…

The Euro disproportionally benefits already rich countries in the EU, while harming less well off countries like Greece, as they don’t have control over the value of their own currency.

Being allowed to travel freely among the borders of Europe isn’t a big thing in my opinion, unless you have money and can travel for pleasure. In contrast with Latin America, for example, where there occur bigger migration thanks to most of us speaking Spanish, whereas over there you have a lot of different languages that might have nothing in common at all, so it’s not so easy to move to another country when you are in a crisis as it might be in other places.

And when it comes to economics, I don’t remember the specifics, but I know it is not a good idea to have the same currency in place where there are so many nations. I think it was related to how one country totally unrelated to yours could create an imbalance to the currency, and creating a dependence on determinate countries.

Being allowed to travel freely among the borders of Europe isn’t a big thing in my opinion, unless you have money and can travel for pleasure.

Don’t you think that “freely” trading goods within the Schengen area might help the economy as well as consumers? The easier it is to ship stuff within the EU, the easier it is to buy and sell within it.

I like a European union, but I don’t like the European Union.

I think it has done some great things to protect peoples rights, health and safety…

In Europe, while stepping over other, especially non-white countries.

If they really gave a shit about human rights, they’d have cut ties with the US by now.

I hope my reply is polite enough esp. given you are an admin, but I would like to give some nuances/counterpoints.

It also hasn’t done anything against the rampant homophobia and erosion or women’s rights in Poland, as an even more close to home example.

This comment of yours is fair enough to make. However, Poland is still a sovereign nation, so there is only a small amount of “ordering around” that the EU can do. Not only because that is how the EU is “designed”, but also because Polish nationalists/conservatives would love to shout out to anyone hearing them that they are being overruled by the EU (thus only gaining more power). So to be honest I do not know what could be a solution to this, but I agree something needs to happen.

In Europe, while stepping over other, especially poorer and non-white countries.

Are you sure this would not somehow happen without the EU? Haven’t you noticed e.g. the rising Chinese “imperialism” in Africa?

Seeing how they’ve only made timid attempts at criticism against the human rights disaster that is the US (especially Trump’s US)

  1. We were in the middle of a pandemic when Trump was Potus, so we were kind of having our hands full
  2. Trump’s government would simply have done a tu quoque and stated something like “as if you are better” (given “we” are not 100% clean ourselves, as well as given the power Trumpers have found in reflecting and projecting flaws).
  3. What measures beyond “strongly worded letters” would actually have made a difference?

This comment of yours is fair enough to make. However, Poland is still a sovereign nation, so there is only a small amount of “ordering around” that the EU can do. Not only because that is how the EU is “designed”, but also because Polish nationalists/conservatives would love to shout out to anyone hearing them that they are being overruled by the EU (thus only gaining more power). So to be honest I do not know what could be a solution to this, but I agree something needs to happen.

Okay? But at the end of the day, that means nothing to the oppressed LGBTQ+ people in Poland.

Haven’t you noticed e.g. the rising Chinese “imperialism” in Africa?

You mean the billions that China has poured into Africa in the form of supplies, infrastructure and now vaccines without requiring any of it to be repaid? China is also famous for outright cancelling debt for African nations especially in times of crisis like the pandemic. If they’re trying to be imperialist, they’re not good at it.

What measures beyond “strongly worded letters” would actually have made a difference?

Breaking economic ties? The EU was pretty quick to ban Huawei’s 5G hardware on a rumour they they were spying on users (rumours spread by the US mind you, a country that has been confirmed to have spied on EU countries in the recent past). Why not do the same with US companies if they wanted to stick it to them?

Or… at least tell the US to remove their nuke bases from EU countries?

@bmrd@lemmy.ml
7
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1M

It helped my country a lot. EU pours a lot of money to poorer members. A lot of stuff is done with European money, like infrastructure, agriculture, culture and so on. Of course richer countries get benefits too. And that is great. The only thing EU lacks in military power IMO. We should be more independent from USA.

@mikelgs
admin
5
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1M

This is my first federated comment.

EU is annoying when they restrict what crops you can produce. I think it is bad for local food sovereignity not to be free to produce whatever.

The problem is complex, I’m not an expert. I just wanted to bring the agriculture aspect here.

Terrible for the Global South :)

How?

A coalition of rich, imperialist, mostly white countries? Hmm, wonder how that could be bad!

white

Irrelevant, and a bit racist of you…

rich imperialist

Ah yes, the rich imperialists of Romania, Greece and Lithuania…

Besides, using this argument you’d imply the global south would be a better place if, for example, the US political system (or Russia for that matter) disintegrated and balkanized into 50 small strongly non-synchronized states. I’m not sold on that. The world is really not a zero sum game. There’s some merit to this type of thinking applied to politics some times but I’m really not sold on it universally. We’re posting this on Lemmy, a federated platform, which implies distribution, yes, but also synchronization. The EU, and other similar types of higher governance systems are essentially semi-federal systems. If you like federation you can’t just selectivity not apply it here. You might say a good ethical system shouldn’t allow big rich players to join forces, because that would be ”teaming” to utilize gamer parlance (or the political equivalent of monopoly if you will), but there’s literally no way to inforce that in real life as of right now, plus the global dynamic is most definitely not only PvP but also PvE as I already implied, to continue the gaming metaphor, why not.

And, more importantly IMO, this means that without the EU the global dynamic would be very US-China bipolar, considering that, y’know, they exist. I think a third option is beneficial for everyone involved, realistically.

What the south needs to do right now is to strengthen its own unions like the ASEAN or MERCOSUR.

Irrelevant, and a bit racist of you…

Go on somewhere like Reddit /r/Europe and there is plenty of white supremacy to be found, so clearly many Europeans themselves think being white is an important factor.

Besides, using this argument you’d imply the global south would be a better place if, for example, the US political system (or Russia for that matter) disintegrated and balkanized into 50 small strongly non-synchronized states.

Yes.

it’s amazing for travel, no need to change phone number and no borders. it:s a shame UK left.

It’s the best thing that has happened for the continent as a whole in a long time, and specifically so for some countries. There are issues with it, certainly, but what most people seem to forget is just what it is. The EU is the result of 60 years of treaties, organizations, reconciliations, negotiations, and of trying to bring together the national visions for such a union of over 20 states. It can’t really be compared to anything else that has existed in the world until now. So from that perspective, the EU is quite an achievement.

Of course, here is hoping that the next 60 years will improve it even more and fix most of the issues that people have with it.

Gives Europeans a massive sense of euro-supremacy. Just look at /r/Europe and its meme analog, /r/YUROP.

“We’re better than your shithole country! Now let us exploit you!”

Fair enough, but I think that the “Eurosupremacist capitalism” is at least partially a reflection of the politics from the EU’s most powerful members. After all, the current europarlement is comprised of “blocks” built with representatives from national parties. Those who hold the reins nationally, are most likely to also hold them at the top level. In addition, individual EU member states are not “strong” enough on their own so the EU is necessary despite its shortcomings. We are not Canada after all. Either we form a “block”, or you Canadians are left without us to duke it out against US, Russia, China on the world stage. And honestly, Venezuela partly has itself to blame for its mess given the domestic political decision-making. Yes, I realise there may be foreign influence as well but would that not be mostly the US? They (used to) love messing with e.g. Chile as well.

So to be honest with you, I do not see how resenting the EU for being what it is helps anyone on this globe with the (geopolitical) issues with e.g. the US, Russia, China and so on (I do not resent any of their citizens of course, I mostly refer political bodies in this case).

The EU is an imperialist project which exists mainly to benefit capitalists. This is easy to see when you look at its origins, which are the European Coal and Steel Community, European Economic Community and Euratom. All of those are related to large corporations, and energy policy.

Then there is the fact that the EU was strongly shaped by the United States, “liberating” its markets and privatising many state services, all to increase profits for companies. And of course the EU is very closely linked with NATO.

Today with the Euro its even worse, especially Germany benefits a lot because of its exports, while poorer countries are unable to devalue their currencies, which would allow them to overcome crisis. And you have wages lowered in richer countries by workers coming from Eastern Europe, who are working under miserable conditions.

The EU also has the European Arrest Warrant, which speeds up criminal prosecution and extradition across borders. Sounds great on the surface, but it has no dual criminality clause (other than with a few EU countries that chose to add that stipulation) and IIRC doesn’t say much about how severe a crime needs to be for it to apply. There’s currently a problem with it being used on petty crimes across EU borders when it was intended for more serious crimes.

Hmm, can you say !acab@lemmygrad.ml?

Needs to be reinvented, regenerated for our generation, some doctrine and tabou need to be dropped and our generation has to reclaim the European idea and make it evolve, if we don’t, we’re back to mediocrity and nation states mediocracy.

I like the idea of European cooperation but I don’t like the EU simply because it’s undemocratic. Important decisions of the EU are taken by unelected institutions like the ECB, the European Council, the European Commission and the European Court of Justice. With the exception of the European Commission these unelected institutions can’t be held accountable by elected bodies.

Well it’s European and it’s a union, so…

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