,,,if they will listen.
It's a time-honored lesson in European politics, but since the advent of the European Union, one which hasn't been seen much.
It's simply secession. Yep, in most political unions, some would say ALL political unions, there lies a process for breaking up a nation into subordinate parts. If the process is followed carefully, which it usually isn't, the parent nation has to go along, or get sanctioned by the larger union for breaking it's constitution. If the process isn't delineated in a political union, armed revolution will arise to serve as the process for political change.
This has happened before. World War One happened because the make-up of the Austria-Hungarian Empire, composed of smaller states allied under an Emperor. Some of the Empire's smaller states decided that they had had enough of Empire, and two of the populations rebelled (Serbia and Montenegro). In an attempt to hold everything together, the Austria-Hungarian military empire was stressed past the breaking point, and all the delicate treaties with the other Empires of the day fell apart, with the geopolitical situation devolving into war.
Democratic Socialism, as an organized movement, was born in the populist sweeping-aside of the old Empires of Europe. It has had a century to establish itself as the model of politics in Europe, but it has never gotten a popular hold on the Continent. The European Union, the Socialist super-government which was supposed to hold all the various Socialist nations together, has utterly failed to stamp out the nationalism of and in the individual countries, and the economic demise of several of the weaker members has accelerated the process of EU decline. Some members, such as Greece, are happy with cradle-to-grave Socialism and are determined to keep it, even at the cost of their economies, and some members, like Spain, seem to be okay with re-drawing the borders and letting the recalcitrant regions slip away.
Neither of these two approaches is logical. The smart play would be for the EU to hold a convention of members, agree to end the first Union, and draw up another. The Second Union would have to give new nods to member nationalism, and it would have to allow members to establish their own currencies again. The next Union would become more of an alliance than a super-nation which it is now. The Europeans are good at Conventions. They love to design them, hold them and will usually agree to be bound by their diktats, so an EU2 is easily doable.
Okay, that is the lesson for today, Students.
Here is your homework: prepare a short paper to compare and contrast the devolution process now underway in Europe, to the American political process. Opinions of conclusion are encouraged in your summaries.
Thank you for your attention in today's class.
/the Perfesser closes his books, loosens his tie and sits back for his usual, enjoyable five minutes with the brighter students who hang around after lecture/