David Cameron, the UK’s current inhabitant of No. 10 Downing Street, has proposed letting the Queen’s subjects vote on whether to continue their attachment to the European Union…..or secede. About a third of our tea-drinking friends across the pond believe that their membership in the EU isn’t working out. Cameron has proposed letting the Brits vote on continued membership in the EU, but only after the next parliamentary election, which is set for 2015. If the Conservative Party wins, Cameron says he’ll put the vote to the people. Aside from the amusing manner in which the Brits carry out their politics (Prime Minister’s Question Time is the best “show” on cable, with better writers than Downton Abbey), there is a more interesting question at hand that rarely gets mentioned in polite company.
This week the European Union won the Nobel Peace Prize. The prize committee startled the world with this selection, breaking with tradition by honoring an institution rather than an individual. Reactions, understandably, have been mixed, both in Europe and around the world. European bureaucrats are overjoyed that other European bureaucrats have given them this stamp of approval. Many people look at this self-congratulatory exercise with a bit more cynicism. I can only imagine how “Condescending Wonka” would react.