Category Archives: JEOletter Nr. 14 / July 2011

Editorial

This article was posted in JEOletter Nr. 14 / July 2011.
Editorial

Editorial

The past few days have illustrated how the EU’s role, in the field of economics and business, spans simultaneous struggles to meet massive, destabilising crises, and the concern with incremental attempts to ‘add value’.

Once again, the EU Council at the end of June had to set aside its long-planned agenda in order to grapple with the threats to the Greek economy, the Portuguese economy, and the Euro. The ‘rescue package’ for Greece is so onerous that virtually no Greek regards it as as rescue, only as a condemnation to years of economic misery. The rest of the EU also struggles with the challenge of balancing solidarity (strongly tinged with self-interest, especially in those countries whose banks are heavily exposed to Greek debt) with effectiveness: behind this there looms a nightmarish question. How many fragile economies can be supported, or even rescued successively – and by whom? Continue reading

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EU citizenship: Looking for ways and means to flesh it out

This article was posted in JEOletter Nr. 14 / July 2011.
Participation levels - image: Adam Crowe (cc: by-nc-sa)

Participation levels - image: Adam Crowe (cc: by-nc-sa)

Hervé Pierre Guillot

This article deals with the concept of EU citizenship, presenting briefly the new instrument to foster participative democracy enshrined in the Lisbon Treaty, the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI). It then illustrates how the Commission mainly focuses on Citizens’ rights and finally outlines a project coordinated by OCIPE on “Education and Citizenship in the European Context”.

The Treaty of Maastricht introduced for the first time in the primary law of the EU the concept of “European citizenship”. According to the latest version of the Treaty on the European Union (TEU), “every national of a Member State shall be a citizen of the Union. Citizenship of the Union shall be additional to and not replace national citizenship” (art. 9). Continue reading

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TrĂŞve d’uniformisation!

This article was posted in JEOletter Nr. 14 / July 2011.
Gentle Monster - image: bsabarnowl (cc: by)

Gentle Monster - image: bsabarnowl (cc: by)

Thorsten Philipp

Hans Magnus Enzensberger passe un savon à la politique européenne.

Quiconque s’intĂ©resse aux perspectives et opinions critiques envers l’Union europĂ©enne et ses processus politiques, ne doit pas chercher longtemps pour trouver des arguments. Nombreuses sont gĂ©nĂ©ralement les tirades contre “Bruxelles” lancĂ©es Ă  la fois dans les journaux, du cĂ´tĂ© des politiciens et de la part de la sociĂ©tĂ© civile.

Mais dans la vaste marĂ©e de telles dĂ©clarations, un nouvel Ă©crit rĂ©clame sans doute une attention particulière – et pas seulement parce qu’il a Ă©tĂ© Ă©crit par un grand amoureux de l’Europe. Continue reading

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The European Commission’s narrow conception of Education

This article was posted in JEOletter Nr. 14 / July 2011.
Education - image: HVX Silverstar (cc: by-nd)

Education - image: HVX Silverstar (cc: by-nd)

Frank Turner

A society’s guiding values are evident in its vision of education. Education systems initiate the young into their culture’s ethos and heritage, so that they may understand and appreciate the richest accomplishments of their civilisation: and (no less), become aware of its blindnesses and limitations, so learning openness to a wider and more various world than their own. Education enables a participation in society that is both creative and properly critical, and is thus at the heart of active citizenship. Exclusion from decent education is a key factor of social marginalisation. Education, whether formal or informal, needs to continue through life as part of ‘personal growth’. Then, because any civilisational project requires the provision of decent livelihoods, education rightly and necessarily prepares the young for economic life. Continue reading

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Les qualitĂ©s attendues de l’homme politique

This article was posted in JEOletter Nr. 14 / July 2011.
Quality - image: aithom2 (cc: by-nd)

Quality - image: aithom2 (cc: by-nd)

Henri Madelin

Partout en Europe, la politique est en crise et la dĂ©mocratie est en peine. L’insatisfaction des populations est grande. Elles la manifestent par des votes pour des partis extrĂŞmes ou “hors système”. Un populisme rempli de colère s’installe un peu partout. Rares sont actuellement les hommes politiques Ă  la hauteur des qualitĂ©s qu’on aimerait trouver chez eux. Max Weber, un cĂ©lèbre sociologue allemand, a Ă©tĂ© hantĂ© par ces questions au sortir de la première guerre mondiale et il s’en est expliquĂ© dans un livre appelĂ© Ă  un grand succès: Le savant et le politique. Continue reading

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Le risque caractéristique de la modernité?

This article was posted in JEOletter Nr. 14 / July 2011.
Nuclear protection forces - image: PanARMENIAN_Photo (cc: by-nc-nd)

Nuclear protection forces - image: PanARMENIAN_Photo (cc: by-nc-nd)

Thorsten Philipp

“Dans leur très grande majoritĂ©, les citoyens de l’UE sont très soucieux de l’environnement” constate un communiquĂ© de presse rĂ©cent de la Commission EuropĂ©enne. Il est souvent la nature de la dynamique des catastrophes environnementales, que les dangers sociaux et environnementaux des grandes technologies reçoivent une attention majeure. En rĂ©alitĂ©, Fukushima et Deepwater Horizon – comme toute autre catastrophe environnementale – mettent Ă  nouveau en Ă©vidence l’interaction Ă©troite entre le progrès et la modernisation, d’une part, et le risque potentiel, la perception de la crise et l’augmentation des risques, d’autre part. Certes, le risque est une expĂ©rience existentielle fondamentale; elle a toujours Ă©tĂ© prĂ©sente dans l’histoire humaine. NĂ©anmoins, ce risque – qui jusqu’Ă  la deuxième moitiĂ© du 20ème siècle Ă©tait uniquement une discipline mathĂ©matique – apparaĂ®t depuis lors comme une catĂ©gorie clĂ© des sciences sociales, en raison du progrès technologique, des technologies Ă  grande Ă©chelle et des Ă©vĂ©nements associĂ©s Ă  la crise Ă©cologique – en particulier – les grandes catastrophes Ă©cologiques, survenues depuis les annĂ©es 1970. Continue reading

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The results of the Hungarian Presidency

This article was posted in JEOletter Nr. 14 / July 2011.
Hungarian Presidency

Hungarian Presidency

Gergely Ternovszky

As the Hungarian government has passed the presidency to Poland, we may draw some conclusions about its recent mandate, comparing its initiatives and their outcome, examining its reactions to the challenges that suddenly emerged.

It should always be borne in mind that the presidency itself does not provide notable additional rights, or influence in decision-making, for the country holding it. Rather, it imposes tasks of protocol and organisation. Within this framework, we can see what the Hungarian Government found important, as president, to promote for the well-being of the EU. Continue reading

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From Warsaw to Brussels

This article was posted in JEOletter Nr. 14 / July 2011.
From Watsaw to Brussels

From Warsaw to Brussels

Dear Brussels,

Looking back at the 1st July, when Poland took over the EU Presidency, I write a ‘Postcard from Warsaw’ rather than a detailed report, focusing on the atmosphere within Polish society at this time.
Today’s Poland is more and more conscious of the advantages of being an EU member state, though no one expects earlier dreams to be fulfilled, either from EU membership itself or from Poland’s EU presidency. The Presidency will first have to face the Greek debt crisis, in a European Union that struggles against growing pressures on public finance, as well as the current migration pressures within the Schengen area, whilst simultaneously being challenged by the revolutions in the Arab states. Some commentators fear a presidency of excessive caution, others that an element of infighting in Poland, as national elections draw near, might tarnish the image of the country. Nevertheless, Poland has made significant progress over the past two decades, and the transition from a totalitarian system to democracy will be symbolised remarkably by its assumption of the Presidency. Continue reading

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50 years ago

This article was posted in JEOletter Nr. 14 / July 2011.
50 years ago

50 years ago

Le travail du dimanche dans les pays du Marché commun
Lettre de l’OCIPE n° 8, juin 1961, pp. 11-14.
Claude Debbichi

Le 20 juin 2011, a Ă©tĂ© officiellement lancĂ©e l’”European Sunday Alliance”. Regroupant 65 organisations de la sociĂ©tĂ© civile europĂ©enne (associations, syndicats, Eglises), elle veut promouvoir la valeur du temps libre synchronisĂ© (symbolisĂ© par le congĂ© du dimanche) dans nos sociĂ©tĂ©s. Et se faire entendre dans le cadre de la rĂ©vision de la directive europĂ©enne sur le temps de travail. Mais la question n’est pas neuve…

“Le travail du dimanche est l’un des problèmes sociaux auxquels la CommunautĂ© Ă©conomique europĂ©enne peut ĂŞtre prochainement appelĂ©e Ă  s’intĂ©resser. Nous voudrions indiquer ici dans quels termes le problème se pose actuellement. [juin 1961 NDLR]
Dans les six pays de la CEE, l’Ă©volution sociale, du 19e siècle Ă  nos jours, a jouĂ© en faveur de la limitation du temps de travail hebdomadaire mais aussi, dans l’ensemble, en faveur du repos dominical. Le repos hebdomadaire du dimanche a Ă©tĂ© Ă©tabli comme règle gĂ©nĂ©rale. Les dĂ©rogations Ă  cette règle avaient jusqu’Ă  prĂ©sent un caractère exceptionnel. Elles n’Ă©taient admises que dans des cas relativement limitĂ©s. […] Continue reading

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