Asymmetrical Information - Megan McArdle

01.10.13

An Ever-Closer Union

What's good for us is good for Britain? How about vice versa?

The invaluable Clive Crook offers the necessarily astringent British response to President Obama's statement that America wants Britain to stay in the EU because it's . . . good for America:  

Washington lectures London on the foolishness of debating process instead of getting to grips with real problems? It wants Europe to be less obsessed with its own internal wrangling and more outward-looking? Priceless. Not to mention the fact that the United States would never consent, would not for one nano-second think of consenting, to a fraction of the pooling of sovereignty that Britain and its EU partners have already undertaken, let alone the further pooling now contemplated.

I think Britain should call on the US and its partners to start recasting NAFTA as a full monetary and political union. Be visionary, for heaven's sake. Put the Federal Reserve in Mexico City as a measure of good faith. Europe would benefit if North America were unified, speaking with a single voice, and focused on shared interests around the world and in the region. Also, it would be so much easier for Europe to deal with one government in North America instead of three.

What's that? It's not so simple? No, it isn't.  

Of course, it's not unusual for any country to try to get fellow nations to do things that are in your interest, if not necessarily theirs.  But it doesn't sound good when you say it out loud.