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GEAB Special file

The monthly bulletin of LEAP (European Laboratory of Political Anticipation) - 14 Aug 2020

European elections / Europe 2040: ‘And now for something completely different’ (Mar 2019)

There is a lot about epilogues in this issue! In the case of the EU (a phase in the construction of Europe which came into being on 7 February 1992 in Maastricht), the upcoming elections will seal the vision it has held for 27 years. And this is not an anticipation! We reiterate that the crisis of the euro, the migrant crisis and Brexit, to name only the most obvious of crises, have already put paid to the technocratic edifice that has become so disconnected from the citizens, the world and the future and has crushed the continent for at least a decade. Whether there is a final exit or not, the signal sent by the British two years ago is proof of that.

Tell me who you are and I will tell you what your election will look like 

In one way or another, the 2019 European elections will ‘expose’ the extent of the damage and hence constitute the starting point for the next chapter in the European multisecular adventure, namely…

Disunited European nations 

This is the most serious area of damage in our Maastrichtian Europe: while its mission was to continue the rapprochement, the opposite has occurred. The famous Erasmus programme, conceived in the 1980s to create the conditions for the emergence of a European citizenship (added to and not replacing national citizenship), has become an international tourist agency allowing English-speaking students to spend a year in the Philippines or Australia. As for the first Erasmus generations (de facto more European because, initially, the programme was promoting European student exchange within Europe), when they became adults, they couldn’t see any openings for them to put forward a common political project. Thus, in the severe, yet shared, crisis that the Europeans have been going through since 2009, the only people Europeans were able to turn to were the national leaders. To national leaders, national solutions… The shared European crisis has resulted in citizens being locked into national visions in which other nations seemed to be impediments to implementing their own solutions. Today, the European nations no longer love each other. They are so divided that even within countries, they don’t get along anymore (Catalans, Bretons, Bavarians, southern Italians against northern Italians, Hungarian minorities in Romania, the Scots, the Roma, Muslims, women against men…).

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