20 juni 2005

De Mont Ventoux, de Founding Fathers en de Coalition of the Willing (De andere kijk)

Afgelopen weekend beklommen zo'n 1.000 Vlamingen de Mont Ventoux. Het evenement was een organisatie van Sporta. Eén van de deelnemers, Toon Claes, die twee weken voordien zijn sleutelbeen brak, beklom de mythische berg liefst 9 keer. Gevraagd naar het succes van het evenement, verklaarde hij:

"Je kan op twee manieren leven. De maatschappij neemt zoveel in handen dat mensen zich laten leven. Ofwel neem je je leven in handen en beslis je zelf hoe je dat invult. Ik denk dat heel veel mensen op dat punt zijn gekomen. Mensen functioneren beter als ze zich goed voelen." (bron: GVA)

Ik heb daar niets aan toe te voegen. Er is nog hoop.


So often, European leaders refer to the founding fathers of Europe, Monnet, Schumann, de Gaspari or Adenauer to defend their vision of an "ever closer union". But do they refer correctly? Is this what the founding fathers had in mind?

"Jean Monnet, architect of the Coal-Steel Pool, the original blueprint for the EU, always said: "Avoid bureaucracy. Guide, do not dictate. Minimal rules." He had been brought up in, and learned to loathe, the Europe of totalitarianism, in which communism, fascism and Nazism competed to impose regulations on every aspect of human existence. He recognized that the totalitarian instinct lies deep in European philosophy and mentality--in Rousseau and Hegel as well as Marx and Nietzsche--and must be fought against with all the strength of liberalism, which he felt was rooted in Anglo-Saxon individualism."


"Europe's founding fathers--Monnet himself, Robert Schumann in France, Alcide de Gasperi in Italy and Konrad Adenauer in Germany--were all fervently pro-American and anxious to make it possible for European populations to enjoy U.S.-style living standards. Adenauer in particular, assisted by his brilliant economics minister Ludwig Erhardt, rebuilt Germany's industry and services, following the freest possible model. This was the origin of the German "economic miracle," in which U.S. ideas played a determining part. The German people flourished as never before in their history, and unemployment was at record low levels. The decline of German growth and the present stagnation date from the point at which her leaders turned away from America and followed the French "social market" model."

Answer to the question: I don't think so. Read the entire piece. (hat tip: JohnL on Downeastblog)


Some nice pics of the Coalition of the Willing serving in Iraq.


More reports on electoral fraud and low turnout in Iran, here, here, here and here.

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