European Union grows up to 25 nations with their eastern expansion

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by takao, Apr 30, 2004.

  1. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #1
  2. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

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    #2
    Well, I'm going to go out and have some beers. Not really cellebrating this, just it's Friday! I think it's a great thing though. The more the merrier.
     
  3. Sayhey macrumors 68000

    Sayhey

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    #3
    Don't they celebrate May Day in Europe anymore? There should be some labor celebrations where you can drink a glass or two.
     
  4. takao thread starter macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #4
    hm in asutria there aren't any big celebrations because of this..most people use this day for relaxing /for an extra free day ..perhaps the social-party will have something but nothing big..

    it was the biggest celebration day back in the soviet union as far as i know (with arranged parades etc. you know... propaganda)

    but we are getting off topic
     
  5. Sayhey macrumors 68000

    Sayhey

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    #5
    I know it is off topic, but who can tell me what country International Worker's Day (May Day) originates from?

    As I said in the thread Ugg started, I think this is a huge political and economic event. The EU is now a larger trading block than the US-Canada-Mexico. It is not only a trading bloc however. The level of integration of Europe done in this voluntary fashion is amazing. I look at aspects like the freedom to travel and work across the EU and the protection for minority and labor rights and I see this as a great step forward. In 2007 Romania and Bulgaria will likely join and Croatia is a possibility as well. This is the biggest force for the ending of causes of nationalistic outrages like the war in the Balkans. I hope Europe decides soon on a constitution and the Euro is adopted throughout the EU. Good luck.
     
  6. blackfox macrumors 65816

    blackfox

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    #6
    First of all, I really enjoy this news...I think an expanded EU is a good concept. I do have a couple of concerns, however...
    I wonder how well European nations as disparate and in many cases as long-time sovereign as they are will be able to effectively govern by consensus...will there end up being delays and compromises to policies to try to appease everyone but please no-one? How will the way immigration and work-permits are handled by various countries play out...there is alot of inequity in the Union, and I think the next few years will be difficult...it is my worry that if a crisis came along in that time, it might not be handled effectively...
    In truth, I do not know much about the workings of the EU, so perhaps I am off base...would anyone care to illuminate me, or tell me why I am wrong to be concerned?
     
  7. takao thread starter macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #7
  8. Sayhey macrumors 68000

    Sayhey

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    #8
    I should have known one of our European members would know the history of May Day. It does indeed have its origins in the US Labor movement. Specifically, it commemorates the Haymarket martyrs and the struggle for the 8 hour day. Most folks in the US, if they know anything about it, think it is some kind of Communist conspiracy. Anyway, takao, a virtual blue ribbon for you for getting the answer correct.

    As to the expansion of the Euro Zone, I know all the new countries will gradually adopt the Euro over the next seven years, but the real question is when will the UK, Sweden, and Denmark join. I think in the case of the two Scandinavian countries it will take a time of accelerated growth in the Euro Zone for them to join. In the UK it may take putting the Queen's face on the currency to get them to join (a little joke for our British friends ;))
     
  9. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #9
    It may take a visible improvement in the Eurozone economies and unemployment rates, as well as some indication that France and Germany are not going to continue ignoring the financial rules they themselves set up. By that time, it may not be a question of the Queen's face any more...
     
  10. Sayhey macrumors 68000

    Sayhey

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    #10
    Good points, but are you saying under certain conditions you would be in favor of adopting a single currency? Am I right in assuming that there are many in the UK that view any move in that direction as impermissible?
     
  11. PickledSquirrel macrumors regular

    PickledSquirrel

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    #11
    Celebrating? well both yes and no. On one hand, a more integrated Europe can do a lot of good things for a lot of people. Common environmental politics are, for example, best solved in a large forum.
    On the other hand, the European union in generel and the expansion in particular is a serious threat to our beloved scandinavian welfare systems... (I live in Denmark) In short, our kindergartens, schools, college and universities, hospitals, infrastructure etc. etc. are all paid for through the taxes (incometax is 40 to 68 %!!!!). This, combined with very high minimum wages, creates a society with a tiny percentage of really poor and really rich people, and a vast majority off pretty well-off middle class.

    This system is more than a little difficult to maintain with the free movement of labour throughout the countries. Don't get me wrong, i love the idea, but it does present some practical problems for my little "socialistic-idyllic" country.

    Just heard a story on the news today, about an agency that books polish workers to do new kitchens and bathrooms in peoples houses. For half the price of the danish contractors. The polish wages are simply that much lower. A lot of danes are afraid of an "invasion" of eastern european labour, or worse, unemployed people who will "paddle up here in old soviet cars" to scrounge on our system. (seriously, some people really believe in this)

    This, I think, is the major reason to the scandinavian scepticism towards both the EU and the Euro. We are simply so well off, that we expect any changes to be to the worse.

    Personally, I hope that the social and financial differences between our countries will even out in a few generations, and the majority will be better of than they started with.... Even though this means my little fairytale-country will change into something a little less socialistic :(

    Next on the wishlist is removal of the financial subsidicing of agriculture in EU and US, and THEN a G5 iMac with 40" display :D :D :D
     
  12. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #12
    That I certainly agree with. But there are not many areas where system-wide agreements are valid for all. The Euro, for instance: different economies, even in the homogenised trading bloc of the EU, face different needs at different points in their economic cycles. So far, using one economic lever on twelve different economies has been less than successful.
    Absolutely. These are unjustifiable hurdles for poorer non-EU countries to negotiate.
     

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