Europe: Beyond The Crisis
Its time to update the genius of America's Founding Fathers to fit our present circumstances. If we can't manage to be equal to their spirit, the democracy they so carefully crafted is bound to falter.
At a time when Europe seems divided, lacking vision and, according to some pundits, on the point of collapse, how can we reignite that shared vision and enthusiasm its founders had?
If we want to create more jobs, Europe has to invest heavily in the growth sectors of the future, be they genetics, nanotechnology or digitalization. This can only be done by strengthening research and innovation throughout the EU.
There is no legal framework for a member country to re-establish its own currency or for one member to expel another. Leaving would have far-reaching implications for a country's politics, finances, economy, society and future.
Have Europe's citizens lost faith in the European project? If so, why, and what could we do to reignite a sense of common purpose?
The European Union currently suffers from "competitiveness deficit" compared to other advanced economies. It has lagged behind the U.S. for the last two decades and, if we look at gross domestic product per capita, the gap has actually widened. Why is this?
How can we restore stability to the European banking system? A banking union is the only solution, including bank deposit insurance to protect savers' assets and a central regulator, the European Central Bank.
Symbolically, the Oslo ceremonies are an historical turning point for Europe. By recognizing the European Union's peacemaking past, the Nobel Prize challenges Europe to escape once and for all the destructive pull of narrow national interests and passions.
When the European Union was only an idea, a fantastic object, it was conceived as an instrument of solidarity. Today, Europe hangs together out of grim necessity. That is not conducive to a harmonious partnership.
My recent experience in dealing with the financial crisis in Greece and in Europe has confirmed my belief that this is a political crisis more than a financial one. In trying to confront its fiscal deficit, Europe has run up a democratic deficit.