Thursday, September 15, 2011

What is a Club?

A Club, as opposed to an association or mob, is supposed to be selective in membership.  The  joy of being in a club is to exclude some folks from joining it.  Some people get this better than others.  Full professors in certain places in Canada seem to understand this far better than the European Union.  Sure, this piece refers to just the start of a membership process for Moldova, but this process seems to be an unstoppable machine where the logic of previous promises leads to new ones, ultimately leading to membership to a country that fails to meet key conditions for membership to the organization (Cyprus anyone?). 

This is not even about map-obsession where membership is aimed at keeping the map of Europe hole-free.  Keeping out Croatia or Bosnia or Serbia would mean ugly holes in the map of the EU.  But Moldova is on the edge, so its absence should be seen as a problem.  Unless Ukraine, Belarus and Russia are down the road? 

Isn't this where the EU got into trouble?  By forgetting about standards and letting in countries in to the Euro zone even though they fell far short of admission standards (that would be Greece)?

Anyway, as a published skeptic about the EU and the power of its conditionality processes, all I can think is: hee, hee, there they go again.


Anonymous said...

I think you very much overplay this. The Parliament has little power and are thus free to make lofty-feel good statements. In this case, furthermore, the actual statement is extremely vague: "Through this vote, the European Parliament recognises Moldova's growing importance in Europe and its significance and commitment to the European Union as a key partner. Moldova's success is important to the EU.”

Steve Saideman said...

That is a valid point. Perhaps this will not lead to much. But at a time where the EU's future is in grave doubt precisely because they let in countries into the Euro zone that did not belong, I wonder if it makes sense to even talk about letting in a country that is so fundamentally flawed as Moldova. Or did the admission of Cyprus mean that the EU does not care about bringing in pseudo-states like Transnistria?

Anonymous said...

Actually, come to think of it, that the Parliament makes such absurd pronouncements (we definitely agree on that) at this point in time shows how little influence they have on "real" policy. This, in turn, means that the Moldova statement can be safely ignored.