We have heard a lot of late about the problems of the European Union – so much so that the moderate and supportive voices are being drowned out in a cacophony of negativism. The EU is imperfect, to be sure, but so is every large institution or network of institutions. The achievements of the EU need closer study and greater promotion, and that is one of the goals of my blog. I plan to give a lot more detail on areas where European integration has worked and made life better for Europeans and non-Europeans, but here is a brief Top Ten list of why we can like the EU:
- Helping bring a lasting peace to Europe.
- Promoting prosperity, innovation, opportunity and choice.
- Raising standards and expectations.
- Helping Europeans understand their shared values.
- Reducing – yes, reducing – regulation and red tape.
- Replacing self-interest with shared interests, and exclusion with inclusion.
- Promoting democracy and free markets at home and abroad.
- Allowing Europe to speak with a louder voice.
- Offering a benchmark model of civilian power.
- Encouraging a rules-based approach to international affairs.
For more details, see my book Why Europe Matters.