giovedì 11 ottobre 2012

Fiscal compact, Tobin Tax and ESM: is this enough?

After decades of directives on weird and technical issues such as the percentage of cacao in chocolate production, EU institutions have been finally forced by unexpected events to debate on very different matters. Since the financial-bank-sovereign debt crisis, EU had to come at a very fast pace to a deep reform process. I add nothing new when I say that big crises lead to big reforms, if then such reforms are right or wrong it is hard to say. Most recently, financial measures seem to be "a la mode", as people in Brussels say. As a matter of fact, none would disagree about the necessity to deeply reform the European Union. From its sovereign debt, its bank and foremost its institutions. But are things like fiscal compact, the so called Tobin Tax on financial transactions or the new euro rescue fund efficient enough to cope with the EU crisis? Does the European Stability Mechanism launched on Monday in Luxembourg ahead of the Eurogroup meeting match with reform needs? To me it seems patching up and nothing more, with a big amount of public money disappearing out of those necessary cuts. Our healthy lifestyle was unbearable, I agree. Western countries should turn their life standards into more sustainable and responsible ones. But the way out of the crisis seems to be more based on figures than on facts. Numbers matter, but sadly they seem to be the only thing in Frankfurt and Brussels seem to be interested in. Hopefully, we need a different approach to solve the continent problems. 

People protesting on Athens streets a couple of days ago, while Angela Merkel was visiting what many call Athens "puppet government", shows that bailouts, tax cuts and measures like the ones imposed by Brussels and IMF give stability (perhaps) only to the starving beast, namely XXI century global market. Although, Greece is paying decades of public money waste and corruption at the hand of market speculation, is the game worth the candle? Is it worth it sowing the seeds of anti-Europeism feelings in a moment when unity is required? Of course, EU regulatory affairs on the financial crisis should provide the most efficient tools in order to keep the markets calm. But is Europe considering the effects of what is doing? Is Europe aware of decades of silence on the democratic shortcoming issues, on getting more cohesion and better integration? Is Brussels working to strengthen EU countries ties or does it care only of budget balance?

Big questions. Hard questions. Useless and rhetoric questions, some would say. Still necessary questions, I'd reply.


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