Monday, April 25, 2005

The Fall of Europe

Romani Prodi, who used to be President of the European Commission, is seeking to persuade the French to approve the draft European consitution. He says that if they vote non, it will mean "the fall of Europe."

This is a somewhat hysterical scare-tactic and - insofar as it means anything - it is completely untrue. A French non may mean the end of this particular draft of the proposed constitution (although we suspect the EU Commission will find some way to resuscitate it), but there is no reason whatsoever that Europe should grind to a halt in the wake of a French rejection. Prodi knows this full well.

It is always sad when senior politicial figures demean themselves by telling deliberate lies, but especially so when they do so to obscure and discourage discussion, in this case about a deeply undemocratic and dangerous document. That kind of intervention does far more to contribute to the potential "fall of Europe" than French voters exercising their democratic rights.

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