Acton Institute Director of International Outreach Todd Huizinga joins us on this week’s edition of Radio Free Acton to discuss his new book, The New Totalitarian Temptation: Global Governance and the Crisis of Democracy in Europe. When many of us think of the European Union, we picture an organization of European democracies acting in concert on a variety of issues, and holding a common (albeit troubled) currency. But how democratic is the EU? What philosophy undergirds the European project? Is the EU splintering under the pressure of the Eurozone and migrant crises, or will the pressures currently applied to the EU lead to meaningful reform of the organization?
What caused the eurozone debacle and the chaos in Greece? Why has Europe’s migrant crisis spun out of control, over the heads of national governments? Why is Great Britain calling a vote on whether to leave the European Union? Why are established political parties declining across the continent while protest parties rise? All this is part of the whirlwind that EU elites are reaping from their efforts to create a unified Europe without meaningful accountability to average voters.
The New Totalitarian Temptation: Global Governance and the Crisis of Democracy in Europe is a must-read if you want to understand how the European Union got to this point and what the European project fundamentally is. This is the first book to identify the essence of the EU in a utopian vision of a supranationally governed world, an aspiration to achieve universal peace through a global legal order.
The ambitions of the global governancers are unlimited. They seek to transform not just the world’s political order, but the social order as well—discarding basic truths about human nature and the social importance of tradition in favor of a human rights policy defined by radical autonomy and unfettered individual choice. And the global governance ideology at the heart of the EU is inherently antidemocratic. EU true believers are not swayed by the common sense of voters, nor by reality itself.
Because the global governancers aim to transfer core powers of all nations to supranational organizations, the EU is on a collision course with the United States. But the utopian ideas of global governance are taking root here too, even as the European project flames into rancor and turmoil. America and Europe are still cultural cousins; we stand or fall together. The EU can yet be reformed, and a commitment to democratic sovereignty can be renewed on both sides of the Atlantic.