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Quotes / The European Union

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My revenge is fraternity! No more frontiers! The Rhine for everyone! Let us be the same Republic, let us be the United States of Europe, let us be the continental federation, let us be European liberty, let us be universal peace!
Victor Hugo

Hacker: Europe is a community of nations, dedicated towards one goal.
Sir Humphrey: Oh, ha ha ha.
Hacker: May we share the joke, Humphrey?
Sir Humphrey: Oh Minister, let's look at this objectively. It is a game played for national interests, and always was. Why do you suppose we went into it?
Hacker: To strengthen the brotherhood of free Western nations.
Sir Humphrey: Oh really. We went in to screw the French by splitting them off from the Germans.
Hacker: So why did the French go into it, then?
Sir Humphrey: Well, to protect their inefficient farmers from commercial competition
Hacker: That certainly doesn't apply to the Germans.
Sir Humphrey: No, no. They went in to cleanse themselves of genocide and apply for readmission to the human race.
Hacker: I never heard such appalling cynicism! At least the small nations didn't go into it for selfish reasons.
Sir Humphrey: Oh really? Luxembourg is in it for the perks; the capital of the EEC, all that foreign money pouring in.

That's why we're in Yerp. Because it's better to be inside pissing out than outside pissing in!
Harry Enfield and Chums (parodying then-topical Conservative colourful metaphors about the Maastricht Treaty)

Who do I call if I want to speak to Europe?
Henry Kissinger (allegedly)

The most puzzling development in politics during the last decade is the apparent determination of Western European leaders to re-create the Soviet Union in Western Europe.

Social democrats once looked to the EU as a bulwark against globalisation — perhaps even a model for how the international economy might be subjected to democratic control. Instead, it is turning out to be a vector of corrosion, demanding that weaker member states implement drastic economic reforms without even a pretence of consultation.
Henry Farrell, "On Post-Democracy"

Defenders of the European Union remind us that it has successfully maintained peace for two decades, and warn that nations must relinquish even more sovereignty if Europe is to cope with volatile global financial markets and compete with economic behemoths like China and the United States. This may be so. A pacified Europe is a precious thing, and a more powerful EU may very well be a necessary thing. But they are not democratic things.
Mark Lilla, "The Libertarian Age"

Foreign policy is to remind the rest of the World that the EU countries had empires, and that if you were to combine all these empires together it would probably take up half of the world. So don't mess with them.

Unanimous! Seventeen countries and it has to be unanimous! I can't get three friends to agree on a restaurant. Can you imagine how hard it would be if none of us spoke the same language and our grandparents killed each other in World War II?

500 million people, 200 languages - no one's got a clue what they're saying to each other! But it's the cutting edge of politics, in a very extraordinarily boring way.
Eddie Izzard: Dressed to Kill


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