What We Can Learn From the European Union

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By Ben Shapiro

The European Union Parliament elections this week provided a shock to the system for the center-right and center-left coalition in European politics: The big winners were nationalist movements. In France, Marine Le Pen’s immigration-restrictionist National Front defeated the party of the current president, Emmanuel Macron. In Italy, Matteo Salvini’s similarly anti-immigration League Party won big. Nationalist parties made gains in Poland, Hungary, Sweden and Great Britain. Euroscepticism is on the rise. And it is being met with a similarly fervent movement of the left: Greens and liberals did shockingly well in Germany.

The main driver behind the new polarization: increased power aggregated in Brussels. While the European Union parliament majority remains pro-EU and pro-immigration, polarization has broken out specifically as a result of the EU overstepping its original boundaries. As Daniel Hannan, Conservative MP and Brexit advocate, writes, “The EU, in short, is responding to the euro and migration crises in the way it responds to everything: with deeper integration.”

The burgeoning conflict within the EU should provide the United States with an object lesson: When you maximize the power of the federal government at the expense of the states, you maximize the possibility of polarization. And indeed, that’s precisely what we’ve seen.

Take, for example, transgender bathrooms. If ever there were a local issue, that would be one: What business is it of a New Yorker what North Carolinians do to their bathrooms? Yet North Carolina's bathroom laws prompted national boycotts from residents of other states. That's because the leftist mindset in the United States holds that the federal government ought to weigh in on every issue — and in the absence of federal intervention, informal boycotts should be utilized. Or how about abortion? The Constitution has a process for amendment — but barring such amendment, the issue of abortion remains state-defined in nature. Nonetheless, Netflix announced this week that it will consider boycotting Georgia if Georgia's "heartbeat bill" goes into effect; Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., among others, has stated that he wants federal legislation to encode Roe v. Wade.

It's not difficult to imagine these mutual recriminations spiraling. As leftists, motivated by the supposed best of intentions, dictate that the federal government radically escalate its intervention into state domains, conservatives will fight back. The founders recognized that a federal government that usurps state powers would result in the breakdown of the system itself. We're beginning to see that prophecy play out in Europe; the possibility of a similar progression in the United States seems more and more likely.

A system of defined powers is the only system likely to preserve the health and happiness of a diverse society. Whether the European Union survives will depend largely on whether the EU takes account of the inherent powers of the countries it represents; whether the United States survives in the long run will depend on whether the federal government continues to encroach on the power of localities and states without regard for the strictures of the Constitution.

8 thoughts on “What We Can Learn From the European Union”

  1. The European Union is identical to the Soviet Union. Same incredibly sick reason for forming. Same reality. Same future.

  2. Resistance is futile!

    So long as government “Progressively” educates our young people, generation after generation, to embrace Leftist ideology and doctrine, they will eventually succeed by virtue of their numbers in their demand that freedom and liberty be eliminated by a new world government of which they are proud citizens with expectations that this government will usher in utopia.

    They will be so very disappointed when they learn they have successfully demanded their own demise and irradication, as well as the destruction of the only economic system in history that has allowed for true wealth to be “achieved” through hard work and determination.

    They believe they will receive all the “benefits” without any “cost” or “effort” on their part. They believe they are “entitled”.

    They are useful idiots…such as have been employed historically when a new totalitarian government (read primarily Communism or Facism) is ushered into power to replace the system they were foolish enough to discard.

    Truth is a lonely warrior…

  3. There is an impulse towards liberty, rejecting command from the center. The more power in the center, the more rebellion against the center.

    (Although for some reason we don’t see it in China…)

  4. It looks like the UK can leave the European Union without having to have a civil war.
    Too bad the United States can not say the same.

  5. Socialism is a one way street that is also a dead end. You vote your way into it and most often, have to shoot your way out of it. (provided you still have means) Usually, in the chaos afterward, something just as bad takes it’s place. We need not experiment with any form of Marxism, it’s been done already. Empty promises are the deception of the left. Our founders gave us the very best system of government ever conceived by man. The Marxists roaming freely among us are a testament to how much we have allowed ourselves to degrade the founding father’s vision. We see, even now, that a return to order may cost us dearly. The left has used our very freedoms to enable their cause to make inroads in our society. As much as they persist in their demands, so too must we to remain free. We must honor those who have gone on before us and leave behind a legacy for those who follow. Nothing less can be acceptable.

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