Acton Institute Powerblog

Samuel Gregg: Eurocracy Run Amuck

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German Chancellor Angela Merkel is congratulated in late September after the German parliament ratified key reforms of the eurozone's bailout fund

At National Review Online, Acton Research Director Samuel Gregg observes that “much of Europe’s political class seems willing to go to almost any lengths to save the euro — including, it seems, beyond the bounds permitted by EU treaty law and national constitutions.” Excerpt:

“We must re-establish the primacy of politics over the market.” That sentence, spoken a little while ago by Germany’s Angela Merkel, sums up the startlingly unoriginal character of the approach adopted by most EU politicians as they seek to save the common currency from what even Paul Krugman seems to concede is its current trajectory towards immolation.

As every good European career politician (is there any other type?) knows, the euro project was never primarily about good economics, let alone a devious “neoliberal” conspiracy to let loose the dreaded market to wreck havoc upon unsuspecting Europeans. The euro was always essentially about the use of an economic tool to realize a political grand design: European unification. Major backers of the common currency back in the 1990s, such as Jacques Delors and Helmut Kohl, never hid the fact that this was their ultimate ambition. Nor did they trouble to hide their disdain of those who thought the whole enterprise would end in tears.

Read “Eurocracy Run Amuck” on NRO.

John Couretas John Couretas is Director of Communications, responsible for marketing and advertising, media relations, and print and online communications at the Acton Institute. He has more than 20 years of experience in the news, events and corporate communications fields. He has worked as a staff writer on newspapers and magazines, covering business and government. John holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in the Humanities from Michigan State University and a Master of Science Degree in Journalism from Northwestern University.


  • Whoa, scary words from Angela Merkel.  She must not have absolute power within Germany, or that country would not be the economic powerhouse that is propping up the EU right now.  Or else the conventional wisdom that Germany is the economic engine of Europe is wrong.

  • Roger McKinney

    Europeans have come to a crossroads in history. State
    intervention in the economy always causes more intervention. That’s why Marx
    advocated it. However, at some point the economic problems pile up and you have
    to make a choice between freeing markets and more intervention/socialism. It
    appears that most of Europe has decided on
    more intervention. They have deluded themselves into thinking they can succeed
    where the Soviets and Chinese failed. They are determined to make socialism
    work if it destroys the continent.