Lines are being drawn


It’s also the legacy bequeathed by the secularized confessional culture of traditional British Protestantism (or Anglican/Episcopalian nationalism, to be more precise).

There is a reason that Brexit and Trump occured in the U.S. and UK.

Folks expecting a glorious repeat over in continental Europe this year - in France and Germany - are going to be mightily disappointed. I’m subtly trying to prepare them for it since I understand (and they don’t seem to) the cultural differences towards supranational governance/globalization that made Brexit a popular grassroots movement in Britain, like Trumpism in America, but which will not be replicated in continental Europe - no matter what Marine Le Pen hopes and wary pollsters fear (given the upsets of 2016).

Americans are going to witness first-hand a chasm between the reaction of the “Anglo-Saxon” world and the continental European one.

Thing is, Britain is changing demographically and the momentum lies in the long-term with the Pro-EU/continentalist faction. Brexit will happen (more likely than not) - and its almost certainly going to be a “Hard” one now - but I think we’d be very rash and naive to think that it spells the end of Britain’s integration with Europe. A new chapter will open up a decade or two from now. Mark my words.

There is a reason Brexiteers are in a hurry to get it done. Time is not on there side.

The only member state where a Eurosceptic upset could viably occur is in the Netherlands this coming March - but even there it is exceedingly unlikely that Geert Wilders could form a government - and despite being one of the original Six their influence is much less significant than that of the “big boys” such as France, Germany, Italy and Spain.

If one wants an indication of the “continentalist mindset”, at heart, consider Spain in 2017:

**Return of prodigal Spain

By DIEGO TORRES 1/12/17**

MADRID — Mariano Rajoy seems to believe the time is right for Spain to reclaim its place at the EU’s top table, reversing more than a decade of decaying Spanish influence in Brussels just in time for Brexit negotiations.

After an economic crisis that wiped 10 percent off its economic output, and almost a year of political instability following two inconclusive elections, Spain now has a fully functioning government and one of the strongest growth rates in the EU. Rajoy now touts his country as a “reliable” partner for the EU, offer advice on how to fight populism by delivering growth, and defend the role of “moderate parties” in shoring up the European project…

Still for the time being, the conservative government is presenting this Spain as a solid bastion of pro-European values and moderate policies the EU can count on in these uncertain times. Ministers are marketing Spain as a case study on how to boost the economy and reign in extremism at a time of rising populism across the Continent and political uncertainty as the Dutch, French and Germans head to the polls this year and Britain prepares to leave the EU.

Spain is almost alone in Europe in having no anti-EU political forces in parliament, and Rajoy doesn’t have to call an election until 2020, though his Popular Party only has a third of the seats in parliament, potentially limiting his ability to negotiate in Brussels.

“We have left behind a period in which Spain … was perceived as a problem for Europe,” Dastis said last month. “Now it is the project of European building that is going through a problematic phase and it is Spain that is ready to contribute to relaunch it.”

In an interview with El País last weekend, the foreign minister said the European Commission and the European Council had asked Spain to play a bigger role in EU affairs.

That’s the future for the continent.


What forum rules? They’ve all been taken down. It’s one of the reasons I’m leaving CAF.


A slight correction there.

The EU does replace the old “Westphalian order” with a supranational framework - by design and intended purpose - but it does not aim to become a pan-European “nation-state”. That is paradoxical and defeats the purpose of ‘supranationalism’ in the first place.

Also, I have to say - your viewpoint is so different to that of the Catholic Church on this issue.

The Vatican detested the Treaty of Westphalia when it was signed in 1648:

The Peace of Westphalia (German: Westfälischer Friede) was a series of peace treaties signed between May and October 1648

The Peace of Westphalia established the precedent of peaces established by diplomatic congress,[4][5] and** a new system of political order in central Europe, later called Westphalian sovereignty, based upon the concept of co-existing sovereign states**. Inter-state aggression was to be held in check by a balance of power. A norm was established against interference in another state’s domestic affairs. As European influence spread across the globe, these Westphalian principles, especially the concept of sovereign states, became central to international law and to the prevailing world order…

The Holy See was very displeased at the settlement, with Pope Innocent X in Zelo Domus Dei[14] reportedly calling it "null, void, invalid, iniquitous, unjust, damnable, reprobate, inane, empty of meaning and effect for all time"

When it finally received an opportunity to (at long last!) effectively “dismantle” or at least “degrade” the legacy of the Treaty in Europe after the Second World War, the Vatican practically leapt at the first chance under the papacy of Pius XII:

The Life and Pontificate of Pope Pius XII

By Frank Coppa

"…In his Christmas message of December 1948, Pope Pius XII once more rejected the dogma of absolute state sovereignty that had prevailed since the Peace of Westphalia in 1648 and invoked an alternative.

The resistance to political integration and the fierce determination of a number of states to protect their national sovereignty led Europeanists such as the French Foreign Minister Robert Schuman, and the economist Jean Monnet to call for economic integration…"

I know this is hard to swallow for Americans, in particular, given the “cultural Evangelical Protestantism” imbibed from an eminently (and at times hostile) non-Catholic confessional culture and I understand the reasons for this historically. Catholic Americans had to “fit in” and prove that they were more American than the WASPS - but that doesn’t mean that we have a right to airbrush history.

And I am afraid that the Church has not changed its mind, as can be seen from the following document published by the Vatican in 2011 under the papacy of Benedict XVI:



Modern States became structured wholes over time and reinforced sovereignty within their own territory. But social, cultural and political conditions have gradually changed. Their interdependence has grown – so it has become natural to think of an international community that is integrated and increasingly ruled by a shared system – but a worse form of nationalism has lingered on, according to which the State feels it can achieve the good of its own citizens in a self-sufficient way.

Today all of this seems anachronistic and surreal, and all nations, great or small, together with their governments, are called to go beyond the “state of nature” which would keep States in a never-ending struggle with one another. Globalization, despite some of its negative aspects, is unifying peoples more and prompting them to move towards a new “rule of law” on the supranational level, supported by more intense and fruitful modes of collaboration. With dynamics similar to those that put an end in the past to the “anarchical” struggle between rival clans and kingdoms with regard to the creation of national states, today humanity needs to be committed to the transition from a situation of archaic struggles between national entities, to a new model of a more cohesive, polyarchic international society

The conditions exist for going definitively beyond a ‘Westphalian’ international order in which States feel the need for cooperation but do not seize the opportunity to integrate their respective sovereignties for the common good of peoples.

It is the task of today’s generation to recognize and consciously to accept these new world dynamics for the achievement of a universal common good. Of course, this transformation will be made at the cost of a gradual, balanced transfer of a part of each nation’s powers to a world Authority and to regional Authorities, but this is necessary

One can accuse the Church of many things but failure to consistently condemn Westphalian sovereignty for well over three hundred years is not among them…I’m afraid :smiley:


French far-right leader Marine Le Pen defends President Trump’s travel ban and condemns “bad faith” backlash


Wholly unsurprising.


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