Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Happy Birthday to EU

It's fifty years since the Treaty of Rome was signed. The Irish Times published a special section with yesterday's paper to mark the anniversary. I haven't had a chance to read much of it, other than Fintan O'Toole's column on the cover.

I have a lot of problems with the EU as it is today. I think it has unnecessarily involved itself in matters which should have remained the domain of the member states. And, I think it continues to overreach.

There are half a billion people and 27 states in the EU today. And,when you take into account all the legal and cultural differences among - and even within - the various member states it seems pretty obvious to me that the EU should involve itself in only a bare minimum of issues. Tax rates, for example, should not be of concern to the EU.

Still, I'd be lying if I said I was "anti-EU". Despite all those aspects of the EU that drive me nuts, it has played a big part in normalizing relations among the European nations. The fact that the last fifty years have been "a tad" more peaceful than the prior fifty years is thanks to the US, NATO and the EU. The Marshall Plan, NATO and the Treaty of Rome are the basis of today's European peace. We should not just say Happy Birthday to the EU, but we should also thank God for it.