January 29, 2003

A Nice Christian Science Mo...

A Nice Christian Science Monitor Article on The Examiner: Tons of quotes from everybody (including Riordan, Layne, Seipp, Kahn, Michael Parks), and a funny picture of Dick reading the paper.

Posted by at January 29, 2003 10:37 PM

Garton-Ash gave a version of this talk at a seminar we recently sponsored at Boston University. I agree -- it's very good.

Posted by: Chandler at January 30, 2003 02:26 PM

Ooops! My comments about Garton-Ash were supposed to go with the article below.

But while I'm hee -- the Examiner looks great! congrats.

Posted by: Chandler at January 30, 2003 02:29 PM

Hi Chandler! Yeah, the TGA shtick sounds like a nice wind-up to a good, terse book.

A dynamic he didn't touch on very much, but what I think is fundamental -- The degree to which the U.S. actively discourages Europe from developing and exercising power, especially military power, and the degree to which Europe happily plays along (on account of it's cheap). That is, I think, the deal-breaker in the DNA of this relationship. Europe will not start acting more responsibly until it takes more responsibility; the States won't start *encouraging* more Euro-responsibility until it stops discouraging things like EU defense clubs. I believe it's in America's strategic interest to encourage strategic competition, especially by essentially benign allies (as opposed to, say, China).

Doing that, though, requires the kind of thick skin that seems in particularly short supply in Washington (and on weblogs) these days. In the short-term, a more powerful Europe will use that power to tweak American noses. In the long term, if they continue to atrophy power and responsibility (and I'm talking about foreign-affairs muscle and the military), I think political discourse will descend right along with it, and the bestseller lists will be crammed with the kind conspiracy-theory only the disgruntled powerless can cook up.

As it stands, I think we're witnessing a cycle of petulance. While entertaining, and sort of harmlessly exasperating, there is a seed there of something potentially grave.

Posted by: Matt Welch at January 30, 2003 02:37 PM

I agree that the petulance is potentially the seed of something worse, but as the "Gang of Eight" proved last week, Europe also has an alternative future that's far more promising than the Franco-German black hole of "ever-deeper integration."

For one thing, I think we should frown upon any program of international cooperation that might be mistaken for the title of a porn film.

For another, the Brits, Italians, Spanish, Danes, Hungarians, Poles, Portugese and -- God Bless 'Em! -- the Czechs are pointing to a better way. The letter they signed in support of the U.S. position on Iraq is a hint of what a looser European Union could like. Leave sovereignty at the national level, spend the bucks (or zlotys) on your own armed forces but open your borders to free trade and cooperate on the big international questions of the day. That's a Europe I'd want to be part of if I were a young computer programmer from Prague or a British ad exec -- indeed, if I were anything but an Ecole Normale grad living off the Euro-trough.

Posted by: Chandler at February 3, 2003 08:00 AM
Post a comment

Remember personal info?

= true; } else { document.comments_form.bakecookie[1].checked = true; } //--> = true; } else { document.comments_form.bakecookie[1].checked = true; } //-->