Every nation of the world can learn crucial lessons about the dangers inherent to the emerging New World Order by taking a close look at the evolution of the European Union, from a harmless commercial alliance of independent states to a regional all-controlling government-in-the-making. Of all the attempts in recent history to consolidate nations into regional governments, preparatory to the establishment of a one world government, the European Union has been the most successful, paving the way for the eventual realization of the globalists� vision. The EU is clearly the forerunner or testing ground on how to get sovereign citizens to cede essential sovereignty in exchange for euphemistic promises of world peace and free trade. The process should be scrutinized closely. The EU�s method of establishing pervasive control through carefully staged progressions, leveraging off one crisis after another, sets a pattern for how globalist leaders in Britain, the US, and other nations will attempt to coax citizens away from national sovereignty and into global interdependence.

The world is being enticed to join in this globalization movement with the tantalizing promised benefits of freer trade, cheaper prices and fewer barriers to impede cross-border exchanges of labor and products. But all of this, in my opinion, is merely bait luring nations into the growing control system that is being written into the fine print of the WTO, NAFTA, GATT, and the EU. Since nations are still somewhat free to abstain or withdraw from these regional organizations, globalist leaders have been careful to minimize the effects of the control aspects, which are just now getting started in earnest. Now that European nations have had a chance to taste of the (perceived) benefits of regionalization, and are committing themselves more solidly to EU membership, these control aspects will begin to attain mandatory status in the EU. A fundamental shift in sovereignty is planned, moving dramatically away from nationhood and toward regional government. The most dangerous provision proposed in the new constitution is that secession from the EU will no longer be an option. In short, opting out will no longer be an option. In the long-term as these mandatory regional laws and regulations evolve; given the current declining trend in world economies, I think we will see a diminution of free trade and an increase in calls for higher benefits, taxation, and other uniformly socialist "solutions."

Currently there is significant conflict between the decrees of the European court, whose jurisdiction has been growing ever more expansive, and local laws within the member nations. But these intrusions have generally only attacked one small sector at a time (government whistleblowers, anti-war protestors, or Christian broadcasters), rarely rising to inconvenience the masses all at once. This will change once a new European Presidency and Foreign Minister is installed, as per proposals currently on the table. The conflict in jurisdiction between the new powers of the EU elected leadership, which are more than symbolic, and the powers of the member nations themselves will, I predict, lead to a call for more legislative control at the EU level--something heretofore resisted. Notice how an increase in power on one side of the EU ledger generates, in reaction, a demand for a counter force of power on a different side of the same EU system--but rarely at the nation-state level where sovereignty should reside.

Background on the transition from Common Market to European Union. Just as its name suggests, the Common Market began as a modest alliance of completely sovereign and independent nations whose first task was to try to harmonize their various and different economic regulatory barriers (tariffs, taxation, subsidies, regulations, and immigration) in order to facilitate trade. Frankly, harmonization through voluntary means never worked out in practice. There were too many special interests within the socialist economies to which every politician was beholden to. These politicians knew they could never get reelected by promising to take away benefits or relinquish a protected status, if such benefits protected a special interest group of any size. This is why socialism, in a raw democracy, never diminishes significantly or votes itself out of existence. It merely sags deeper into the morass of inefficiency until politicians, faced with the inevitable economic crisis, are forced to loosen some of the burdens on the productive class, so that these semi-free capitalists can continue to be harnessed for the "benefit of society."

The highly innovative and industrialized north countries of Europe got a real boost after WWII with the destruction of their former socialist governments and a healthy (albeit temporary) dose of less-regulated capitalism encouraged by the presence of the Americans and Marshall Plan guidelines. But it was not to last. Just as the economic miracle was beginning to take off in the 1950s, socialism began to reemerge, with voters demanding an increasing share of the benefits via redistribution schemes. Over the next several decades, the northern European countries experienced a rise in GNP, innovation and industrial might, along with a steady increase in protectionist measures. They have created a host of complex subsidy schemes to protect inefficient, heavily unionized labor and costly (but high quality) local products as their economies have outpaced the more slowly growing economies of southern Europe.

Spain, Italy, and Turkey, the "poor southern cousins" of Europe, fostered a form of competition (itself a semi-socialist mix, but with a cheaper labor component) which, in the eyes of some in the north, threatened their coveted protected status as primary suppliers of higher-priced local products. As with labor unions worldwide, whose members always view cheaper non-union workers as the enemy, so it was with subsidized local producers throughout the European Common Market. The consuming public of northern Europe wanted to enjoy the cheaper products of southern Europe, but their fellow subsidized producers were resistant to competition and applied political pressure to legislators to maintain protective barriers. This problem was never successfully addressed, despite occasional strikes, riots and other social protests against freer trade, until the decision making process got further removed from local and national leaders.

This is where Common Market leaders were able to instigate beneficial changes in the economy of Europe and at the same time strengthen their own position of authority over the individual nations. The failures of harmonization were finally overcome step by step by gradual deregulation--enacted not by local politicians, who could never have survived at the polls, but rather by unnamed distant bureaucrats in Brussels, the headquarters of the Common Market. Being removed several stages from the direct vote of the people, European leaders in Brussels could issue rules which locally affected people would feel relatively powerless to fight. One step at a time, the Common Market began to knock down regulatory barriers (actually, a good thing) aimed at various trade imbalances (causing some economic pains in the corresponding protected sectors), which would then exacerbate, in turn, different but related imbalances. This would then lead to a subsequent round of deregulation, and so forth.

Over time, the resulting economic dislocation engendered both a backlash against a European union among protectionists, and an increased desire on the part of pro-unification politicians in each nation to somehow gain more control over the regulatory process. The more individual nations felt threatened by the larger powers, and the more they attempted to forge coalitions and alliances to increase their collective share of power within the union, the deeper they were pulled into the emerging EU system. In effect, the (mostly futile) attempts of each nation to gain some measure of control over the regulation process only lent more credibility to the regulatory union itself. A few nations (Austria and Denmark) tried to opt out at various times, but the Common Market leaders knew how to penalize them in trade so as to induce them back to the table. England is one of the few nations today that is not yet fully integrated due to its wise decision to hold onto the British Pound Sterling--something Tony Blair is determined to undermine.

An early obstacle to unification that globalists in Europe needed to address was the cultural identity that each country retained with respect to the other European nations. One of the earliest effective steps at breeching each nation�s cultural homogeneity was to introduce small numbers of foreign workers into the industrialized north. These foreigners brought competition to the protected local labor markets, providing an initial benefit of cheaper labor, increased productivity, and lower prices to the host nations. But there was also a downside. The burgeoning social welfare state in prosperous northern Europe served as a magnet to workers from Turkey, Spain and elsewhere--especially after the fall of the Iron Curtain--and the initial inflow of foreigners soon became a flood due to purposefully lax immigration controls. The long-term price was a heavy one--not only in terms of indigenous job loss and increased infrastructure costs (housing, schools, roads), but in terms of the strained the cultural and political homogeneity of the host country.

Naturally all of this has led to a greater polarization of the European society, and interestingly enough, greater political power to the forces of globalism. How, you may ask? The working foreign poor teamed up with their sympathetic allies on the far left and began to look to the newly empowered EU to give them the political edge they couldn�t otherwise achieve against the mixed socialist center-right parties in Germany and France. Thus, the next level of authority in any unresolved conflict is the natural benefactor in any appeals process in regulatory law. In fact, for those that track conspiracy, these higher globalist leaders have been known to help foment crises that rebound power back to themselves. Not only do they accrue more political power, but when their edicts are disregarded, they have more justification to call for increased enforcement power. That�s partly what the EU�s plans for a small non-NATO rapid reaction force are all about.

Military pacts, like NATO, have brought their own brand of consolidation impetus to Europe. For the first 50 years of NATO, everyone was trying to see who could contribute the least in money and troops, letting the USA shoulder the largest share of the burden. Naturally, the US wanted to call the shots, which ultimately led to increased resentment toward American hegemony in Europe. This resentment has come to a peak recently due to the Iraq war, where Europe has made a quantum leap forward in its resolve to stand up to the US on foreign policy issues. President Bush�s trip to the G8 meeting in Europe this past week was partly intended to rebuild relationships with Europe, but it will only be cosmetic in my opinion. I think the rift is now permanent. Europe doesn�t trust the US anymore to be an honest partner. They all know the US wants to run the whole show. Again, this has driven Europe to lessen emphasis on internecine rivalries and concentrate on presenting a more solid front against the US. All of this has resulted in less resistance to the upcoming changes in EU power, as proposed in this latest draft of the coming constitution, which offer less sovereignty to individual nations but more power to confront the US jointly. This same thinking is affecting the expansion of NATO, where smaller nations are voting for the inclusion of Eastern bloc nations to counter the traditional Big 4 (US, Britain, France, and Germany). In turn, the expanding membership in NATO to include countries like Czechoslovakia, Poland and Hungary provides a perfectly natural transition into EU monetary and political union.

There is some outright manipulation of this whole process. The unionization of Europe has not proceeded simply out of mutual national interests. The failure of voluntary harmonization was merely the sticking point that instigated the call for radical solutions. The real planning and drive for unionization came from the core cadre of European globalist leaders who had an agenda far beyond the advancement of socialism. If they had only been Fabians or Marxists like the majority of other politicians in Europe, they would have been more interested in protecting their home turf with subsidies and high labor rates. The fact that this clique was the driving force for breaking down the barriers of socialist protectionism, in opposition to the majority will of most benefit-corrupted voters, indicates they had an alternative agenda beyond socialism itself. In other words, socialism was one of many tools to be used--not an end in and of itself with them. It is the realization of this distinction, however tardy, that has finally turned the radical left against globalism. The far left realizes that the globalist leaders are not really as committed to socialism as they are to an elitist form of control that mixes both the benefits of partially free markets with the voter corrupting potential of the limited welfare state. Libertarians and conservatives should not relax because the left is out there demonstrating against the global NWO. Their solution is not liberty, but their own version of control.

Conservatives in both the US and Britain need to wake up and realize that they have the most to lose in this battle and that conservative leaders who continue to promote globalism are not doing so in their best interest. There is nothing wrong with globalist cooperation and alliances as long as such alliances maintain the rigid sovereign status of the individual states, a characteristic which was the original genius of the US constitutional model. The states within the US have long since relinquished most of their sovereignty to federal control, but still, America�s tradition of liberty makes it a potential enemy of globalist control. Naturally, US globalist leaders know this and work hard to make sure Americans are as isolated as possible from the inconveniences of globalism so as to keep them passive.

In short, with each crisis of resistance to the barriers of partially free trade, the globalists in the EU have sought to expand the power of the EU as the solution. The 1992 Maastricht Treaty was another major advancement in the attack on European national sovereignty. With the implementation of a single European currency, member nations ceded away the power to regulate their own currency--one of the key pillars supporting the inefficient but politically appealing welfare state. All EU nations were Keynesian in orientation, essentially holding to the theory that they could spend their way to prosperity, and they financed their spending levels by creating budget deficits and debasing local currencies as opposed to raising taxes--which were already very high. Naturally, some European states were much more profligate at the spending and inflation game than others. To accomplish the formidable task of unifying the currencies, the EU spent the next decade in chipping away at some of the most pernicious imbalances in the European economy: differences in rates of inflation, and differences in deficit spending levels between member countries.

The Maastricht Treaty, of necessity, placed strict criteria upon each nation�s rate of inflation and public spending, as a percentage of GNP, in order to ease the transition to a single currency. These criteria did bring a lot of financial discipline to Europe, but in the end every nation had to fudge their economic statistics in order to qualify for monetary union. The leaders in Belgium were only too willing to look the other way, desiring as they did that no nation be excluded if possible. It was interesting to watch this process during the final months of the transition. There was a flood of cash buying across borders as people sought to spend their hidden hoards of cash before it became worthless.

I am not a believer in fiat currency, and thus do not sympathize with the complaints of the various EU countries when it finally distilled upon them what they had lost in monetary union. Suddenly, they had lost the means of direct currency creation to hide government expenses from their taxpaying citizens. With the EU now setting the rate of monetary expansion, each nation has been forced into the same policy mold. Now EU states are left only with the options of either direct borrowing from central or international banks or tax increases. The latter is politically unfeasible now that EU member countries have incorporated, on top of previous taxation levels, a Value Added Tax (VAT) currently taxing most purchases at a rate of between 17% and 22%. This is an example of how a flat tax grows to become a monster--with precious few ways to avoid it.

Besides monetary policy, there are several other legs upon which sovereignty stands: foreign policy, legislative and executive powers, judicial authority, and police power. With the new EU constitution coming to a vote this month, the EU is attempting to make yet another step towards full political union with the election of a real European President. The proposal provides for a term of 2 � years, as opposed to the current system of short-term rotating 6-month presidencies that have only ceremonial significance. There is already an EU Parliament, but it has a limited role since many of its decisions are not binding. The formation of a viable executive branch of government will be the last hurdle to leap in the EU�s quest for mandatory powers.

The current constitutional proposal continues to give lip service to individual member states� powers, but the fine print says otherwise: Where member nations� law, policies or interests conflict with the Union, EU law will have "primacy over the law of member states." "They are most alarmed," as Ambrose Evans-Pritchard stated, "by the concept of �shared competence� put forward in the text, an innocuous sounding term that would prohibit member states from legislating in everything from public health to social policy, transport, justice and economic management unless Brussels waived its powers first." The EU already controls a common fiscal policy. Now it will be given the power to define and implement a common foreign and security policy and eventually a defense policy. Even if the UK does not join the EU in accepting the Euro, its freedom to set its own economic policy will diminish step by step under its duty to harmonize its interests with the "Objectives of the Union," which, more and more will dictate all European policy. Naturally, the European Court�s powers will continue to grow as each conflict is adjudicated.

The new president (chairman of the EU Council) will be picked by the sitting national leaders in a majority vote. The candidate must be a current or past Prime Minister or president, thus, limiting the field to establishment politicians. Front runners for the future presidency are Spain�s Jose Maria Aznar, Britain�s Tony Blair and Germany�s Joschka Fischer. Aznar and Blair have the disadvantage of having backed the American war in Iraq, with all its tenuous and unpopular rationalizations. However, since the EU desperately wants to bring a reluctant Britain into full EU participation (currently outside the monetary union), putting Tony Blair on the throne may be just the ticket to allowing him another six years to propagandize his people into the benefits of giving up the time-honored British Pound. Then again, if the US doesn�t finally manufacture some evidence of Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq, Blair may become the laughing stock of all England. Both Aznar and Blair are nearing the ends of their terms and looking for something big as a follow-on. They don�t want to fade into relative oblivion like Bill Clinton. Fischer, the current German Foreign Minister, is a Marxist, and so will be the favorite of the far left, which controls much of the EU. One obstacle to his election is the growing fear of German dominance by the smaller EU nations. They will most likely vote for Denmark�s Anders Rasmussen, the Dutch Labor politician Wim Kok, or former Belgium PM Jean-Luc Dehaene.

The EU Charter of Human Rights While not currently part of the draft of the new Constitution, there is widespread support among EU globalists for simply blending this charter into the Constitution seamlessly as a "bill of rights." The Charter has all the euphemistic catch words like respect and dignity, but a careful reading demonstrates that it is full of ambiguous and imprecise pronouncements, allowing for a host of dangerous interpretations, as well as statements directly contradictory to each other, and hence legally impossible to adjudicate. Here are a few examples:

From the Preamble: "[The Charter] is based on the principles of democracy and the rule of law." Actually, raw democracy is the unfettered will of the majority and is in opposition to the rule of law-which in its finest incarnation (US Constitution, as originally conceived) places absolute restrictions on the will of the majority so that government�s powers are restricted to the defense of fundamental rights, as opposed to the distribution of direct benefits.

Preamble, again: "the principle of subsidiarity: Enjoyment of these rights entails responsibilities and duties with regard to other persons, to the human community and to future generations." Weeding through the jargon, this means that fundamental rights are not absolute, but are subservient to the whims of the community or the "public good." The EU Charter can make all kinds of pronouncements that "no one shall be subjected to involuntary servitude," but that is exactly what this means. If one�s rights are subject to duties and responsibilities imposed by the majority via democracy, there is no actual limit to such subservience. One can justify all kinds of involuntary service to the community with this doctrine. (See the section on Law and Government at my website, www.joelskousen.com for a workable definition of fundamental rights and a full exposition of what it takes to defend those rights.)

Article 1: "Human dignity is inviolable. It must be respected and protected." Dignity is one of those words that are almost impossible to define. This statement leaves everyone open to the threat of legal action for supposed violations of someone�s dignity.

Article 2: "Everyone has the right to life. No one shall be condemned to the death penalty, or executed." Without a serious death penalty provision, the right to life of all potential victims of crime is put at risk.

Article 3: "Everyone has the right to respect for his or her physical and mental integrity." Once again, "integrity" is so difficult to define as to lead to interminable legal challenges. The second part guarantees "free and informed consent" for all medical procedures, but there are a host of exceptions to this provision, such as forced incarceration due to mental incapacity. Once again, the rights of the individual are subordinated to the rights of the community.

Article 4: "No one shall be subjected to torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment." Torture can be defined with some effort, but "inhuman or degrading treatment" as applied to punishment for crimes is another imprecise wild card. All punishment is degrading to some extent. Are we to be left with nothing but country club prisons?

Articles 7, 8: "Everyone has the right to respect for his or her private and family life, home and communications�and data." Besides the terribly imprecise key word, "respect," the fine print in point #3 of this article says: "Compliance with these rules shall be subject to control by an independent authority," who, I am sure, will be appointed by the government. Government-appointed authorities are never "independent" because they are predictable yes-men to the system--or they wouldn�t have been selected in the first place.

Article 9: "The right to marry and the right to found a family shall be guaranteed in accordance with the national laws governing the exercise of these rights." This looks like a statement of an unconditional right, but in fact, it is tied with the applicable restrictions in law--to be decided and/or changed in the future. Rights subject to constant amendment are not guaranteed in any sense of the word. The EU definition of family includes homosexual unions.

Article 10: "Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. This right includes freedom to change religion or belief and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or in private, to manifest religion or belief, in worship, teaching, practice and observance." Of course the EU isn�t anxious to recognize that this pronouncement is in clear contradiction to the EU laws prohibiting any person from expressing religious beliefs critical of others, such as homosexuals or adulterers. Once again, the Charter makes the following qualification: "the right to conscientious objection is recognized, in accordance with the national laws governing the exercise of this right," meaning, restricting what is recognized as a conscientious objector to war. These are not rights, if one has to read the fine print before exercising them.

Most nations already have constitutions full of sloppy language that easily allows for the degradation of individual and family rights for "public purposes." Those who live with written or unwritten constitutions that more clearly address civil liberties and fundamental rights (almost exclusively limited to the British/American traditions of common law) should be very concerned about the ease in which Europe is sinking into the quagmire of politically correct law, with only a fig leaf of protection against the total loss of liberty. Even if you don�t believe there are forces conspiring to undermine the British and American legal traditions of liberty, you should be unwilling to join in a NWO based upon such flimsy documents masquerading as a constitution and Bill of Rights.