Don't Let Me Stop You

What the heck, you'll do what you want anyway.

US – European Relations

Posted by Dan Draney on March 7, 2005

The always fascinating Victor Davis Hanson weighs in on the current trans-Atlantic tensions.

VDH’s Private Papers :: Eurospeak: “What are we to make of this strange passive-aggressive syndrome? The usual explanations, offered weekly during the last three years, are that in the post-Cold War era the monopoly on military force, and its accompanying opportunities for unilateral action by the United States, naturally earn opposition. Our military prompts envy and with it mistrust from those far weaker who seek to curb raw power with multilateral protocol, shame, and bureaucracy. Perhaps.

Of course, there have always been tensions arising from our two differing views of the Western cultural paradigm. Those disagreements are now brought to the fore thanks to the demise of the common threat of Soviet imperial Communism that could have overrun Western Europe in weeks. Europe bites now — simply because it can. Maybe.

But in all of our own lives — especially in the case with beloved teenagers — we have endured such immaturity: the 16-year old who demands ‘her’ allowance and the freedom to use it as she wishes, but calls at midnight when she is broke; the 21-year-old who comes in at 3 A.M., but apparently chooses not to entertain such hours in his own home at his own expense.

These are the natural contradictions in the evolution from childhood to maturity. Europe may be old, but its union is young. It wants to be independent and powerful, but given its past bloody history and present utopian ideology it’s not sure quite what that entails. Its leadership points to a strong Euro, low inflation, trade surpluses, and a high standard of living, but is really more worried about a low birthrate, troublesome unassimilated minorities from the Middle East, static worker productivity, high unemployment, and poor rates of economic growth.”

Read the rest. It’s well worth it.

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