Sunday, 8 June 2014

NATIONALISM THROUGH APATHY

Flags filling the void.

by Francisco Albanese & Colin Liddell

Although the result of the elections for the European Parliament were controversial, it is ironic that the gains made by Eurosceptic and "far-right" parties were largely the result of the dysfunction and apathy caused by the EU's existence. An important question to ask is: Without that, where would Euronationalism be?

The peculiar nature of this apathy stems from the flood of misfortunes for ordinary Europeans that the Union has spawned since its inception. Because of the EU’s omni-malevolence, which infests every area of life, Europeans have found it hard to find a clear front line to focus their opposition against this nebulous force, and have instead turned off from the project and entered a state of democratic somnolence with occasional nightmares, like victims of a mysterious gas attack.

In their quest for a simple actor-driven narrative, the media has gravitated towards the "anti-European" and/or "Europhobic" parties, as if their rise was powered in a positive way by voter preference for their policies. But the rise of Front National, UKIP, and the other non-establishment parties – including those on the Left – was essentially a side effect, taking place against the background of the usual triumph of Apathy Party, which won by its usual landslide. Rather than those who "steeled" themselves to vote for Farage, Le Pen, or Golden Dawn, the large numbers of people who did not go to the polls was an indication of the real nihilism with which the future of the EU project is viewed.

But being apathetic about, or against, the EU does not mean being against Europe. Quite the reverse. In their blind, stumbling way, voters have come to hate the European Union because it has been a de facto anti-European organization. Its deficient migratory policies and lack of control, has annually allowed in hundreds of thousands of Third Worlders, with their demands to be treated like full-Europeans and have compete rights and generous benefits. Calling parties that oppose this "anti-European" is an obvious oxymoron.

The way to judge how boiled the frog is, is to consider it from the perspective of a prospective member: What would the Ukraine get by joining the EU? Guillaume Faye has little doubt:

"So-called ‘pro-European’ Ukrainians have no idea of what will happen if they join the European Union: uncontrollable immigration far worse than the imagined Russian menace, loss of border controls, and partial loss of sovereignty." Ukraine: Understanding the Russian Position

Even if immigration was not something to worry about, the financial pain caused by the EU’s economic communism has been a decisive factor. The countries where the Eurosceptics did best, like England and France, are practically begging the EU to get their own money back. If you are willing to take your own salary and distribute it among your neighbors, then you perhaps have some moral right to criticize this. But, as usual, the countries receiving EU largesse are hardly grateful. This explains the impressive showing of the Left in Southern Europe.

Naturally the mass media sided against the Eurosceptics and nationalists, manipulating public opinion by appealing to the public's supposed love of "individualism" and "freedom," bland ideas that we can all nod along to but which may lack the ability to take us all the way to the voting booth. The media campaigns have not only been despicable but deceitful, aimed at making people feel that they are threatened by the rise of old-school 1930s-style "fascism." But this kind of out-of-touch campaigning is yet another way of feeding the apathy, and ironically letting the so-called "far-right" in.

But even assuming, just for the sake of argument, that parties like UKIP and the Front National were the Nazis reborn or the Iron Guard brought back to life, the fact that people chose them would simply have been an expression of freedom and democracy, and a decision to be respected. For the media then to frown upon such results is a contradiction in terms.

The real story here is not the rise of an ascendant nationalism against the EU, but the dysfunction of the EU instead acting as driver for nationalism. The very organization that was founded to stop "fascism" (a.k.a. nationalism) is now turning into its incubator. Without the EU, European nationalism would not be in nearly such a healthy state as it is now. For that at least we have to thank the EU.

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