Introduction: The EU as a Neo-liberal Construction
The European Economic Community (EC) or Union (EU) into which it was incorporated in 1992 has always enjoyed favorable academic press. Of literally thousands of scholarly books and countless articles devoted to the subject, nearly all were apologetic in tone or substance, barely any critical of the long-term project of achieving an “ever closer union” of European nation states.1 The reigning narrative was that of the weakening of the nation state under the impact of trade interdependence or financial globalization and the salutary growth of supranational power. From the inception the single market and currency were viewed by the Commission and others as the crowning step in the subordination of the nation state to a supranational authority that would take on its elemental functions and capture the loyalty of its citizens. While business and liberal economists identified with the project of market liberalization, social democrats, notably the first academic specialists, saw it taking on the functions of the emerging welfare state just as later ones would justify it as a check to US-led global market forces. Only in the 1990s came serious recognition of its roots in national politics and its own neo-liberal agenda.2
KeywordsMoney Supply Monetary Union Economic Community Single Market Single Currency
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