All Europeans are created equal. One of the fundamental principles of the EU is that citizens are all equal before the law. Yet the EU is not just a union of citizens, it is also a union of Member States. And some Member States are bigger (and richer) than others.

Countries such as Italy and Greece have long-argued that they’ve been treated badly by other EU Member States, who they feel have forced through painful austerity measures in the wake of the Eurozone crisis whilst simultaneously refusing to take their share of arrivals from the refugee and migrant crisis. On the other hand, countries such as Hungary and Poland argue they are being discriminated against by the EU because of their more conservative political inclinations, and because they are pushing back against the liberal worldview of Western European leaders.

What do our readers think? We had a comment sent in from randomguy2017, who doesn’t believe that all EU countries are treated equally. He says he thinks EU elites “look down” on countries like Hungary and Poland. Is he right? Are some Member States more equal than others?

To get a response, we spoke to Ana Maria Gomes, a Portuguese social democratic MEP. What would she say?

I think it’s totally wrong to think that the EU looks down on Poland and Hungary when we are trying to defend principles which are universal values and democratic values. On the contrary, I would say that we look up to the people of Hungary and Poland when we indeed insist that these basic values, democratic values, need to be respected by authoritarian regimes, such as the one that the people of Hungary now have to endure under Viktor Orbán.

The only explanation why Viktor Orbán’s regime has not yet been sanctioned by the European Commission – and it should because of violations of EU law and basic principles of international law – is the fact that the EPP [Ed: European People’s Party, the centre-right grouping in the European Parliament] is covering up to protect one of theirs, from the family. I think it’s exactly because we want to uphold those values – also in Hungary and in Poland and elsewhere – that we need to set higher standards. So this is not about looking down, it is about looking up to the high values that the EU believes is the cornerstone of its approach.

For another perspective, we also spoke to Margot Parker, a British MEP with the eurosceptic UK Independence Party (UKIP). Here’s what she had to say:

I think there is truth in that and I can understand it. I think it goes probably to the very heart of how the European Union functions. When I look at the people at the very top, I asked myself… who, and how, do we get the top people in these top jobs? And, I have to say, I have never seen any of the top jobs going to, for example, somebody from Hungary or someone from Poland.

We do have somebody at the moment [Ed: Donald Tusk, President of the European Council], but at the end of the day Mr Juncker was put in that position because Chancellor Merkel thought he was probably the right man as far as she was concerned for the job. But I would like to see greater democracy with the other countries within the European Union. So, I think he has a point.

Finally, we put randomguy2017’s comment to Pál Csáky, a Slovak centre-right MEP and member of the Hungarian minority in Slovakia, as well as former Deputy Prime Minister for European affairs, human rights and minorities. What would he say?

Does the EU treat all its Member States equally? Or does Brussels look down on countries like Poland and Hungary? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below and we’ll take them to policymakers and experts for their reactions!

IMAGE CREDITS: (c) BigStock – Saharrr; PORTRAIT CREDITS: Ana Gomes CC – Own Work, (c) Margot Parker – EFDD


172 comments Post a commentcomment

What do YOU think?

  1. avatar
    Tim

    Some are certainly more equal than others. Funny, the newer entries are getting wealthier fast, and they won’t easily forget

    • avatar
      Adrian

      Remind me again how “we are getting wealthier faster” when most EU FUNDS ARE STOLEN by politicians….

  2. avatar
    Stefano

    Dall ‘Europa, il problema sono gli
    Stati membri :-
    se tutti gli Stati si ostinano a scaricare il problema migranti sull ‘Italia; non potremmo che aspettarci un rinvio di quel cambiamento simmetrico che già
    già gli Stati del Nord avevano rigettato sulla Costituzione Europea.
    Pensai anche (< forse ci dovremmo aspettare un Eurasia contro un Estasia? >) – “al post l ‘ardua sentenza!.
    Ma finché gli Stati non incominceranno a condividere i rischi per risolverli; i passi di una futura USE non potranno far altro che rallentare.
    Tutti devono pensare alle distanze dalle quali l ‘Italia s ‘è allontanata e, continua ad allontanarsi nell ‘indifferenza dell ‘Europa.
    #migranti

  3. avatar
    Paul

    Of course it doesnt…where were the reprimand or punishment for germany by breaking the rule on trade surplus.. where was it for france when breaking it for budget deficit……its a franco/german rule book applicable only to others.

    • avatar
      Jorge

      It’s not completely true. France was overviewed by the EC because its excessive deficit. So, although the affected country was France, France was overviewed by the EU.

    • avatar
      Paul

      Jorge….France was given 8 years to correct !…….in fact, didn’t achieve that….only just now it’s budget forecast

    • avatar
      Paul

      COnt….forecast is due to come in under 3%……on the other hand Germany trade surplus is sucking the life out of EUROZONE and totally contravenes intention in macroeconomic policy…..but no action taken….no wonder Trump tweets !

    • avatar
      Davide

      Paul great words!!!

  4. avatar
    Michael

    Money talks. In the EU power is a function of wealth. That’s all there is to it.

  5. avatar
    Mark

    Have you seen who gets the majority of development funding?

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Have you seen who pays for it ?

    • avatar
      Joe Thorpe

      Have you seen which companies benefit from the development funding? I visited Poland and just asking a few questions found many of the contractors doing much on the building works and this benefitting from the EU funds the most were in fact German 🤔

  6. avatar
    Mark

    It’s certainly true that the wealthier states pay in more than they get back. But you’ve got to separate the EU from the eurozone which is/should be stricter

  7. avatar
    Lawrence

    The EU should have kicked out the governments of Poland and Hungary a long time ago. Keep the people kick the governments out….

    • avatar
      DonBydzio

      Lawrence chętnie opuścimy EU które w obecnym stanie przypomina szambo
      Lawrence , we would like to leave the EU, which in its current state resembles

    • avatar
      Lawrence

      No I mean restrict the movement of government and civil servants in the rest of the EU…. although sometimes someone from Brussels suggests that mabe both countries should be expelled….

    • avatar
      Lawrence

      DonBuydzio … it.s very difficult to run a fascist government within the EU… maybe old habits die hard for some polish people….

    • avatar
      Marin

      Are you really so ignorant? The Polish fought more against fascism than what France could ever accomplish! It’s foolish enough that you literally say that democratic governments should be overthrown, because they don’t accept cultural genocide, you even want to claim that Hungary and Poland are the fascist ones?

      The funniest thing is, I also agree that Poland and Hungary should leave, and form their own union, and alliance, because the European Union is a digged grave at this point, with all it’s members entering that grave.

    • avatar
      Lawrence

      Marin ….before to start trolling read my comment first…..

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Lawrence If your pointless EU restricts the movement of democratically elected governments because they obey the wishes of their people then you have proven the EU is the fascist dictatorship, not the member States trapped in it.

    • avatar
      Adrian

      I’m sorry “cultural genocide” ?
      I don’t speak “nazi slang”. Please go into details.

    • avatar
      Erik

      Ivan
      Said by the one who works and got paid by the European parliament. How hypoctite.

    • avatar
      Lawrence

      Ivan …facebook didn’t notify me about your comment. But basically there is nothing democratic about fascism any more than cancer is related to good health. If people think that fascism is good it.s because they are sick….

  8. avatar
    Robin

    Poland, Hungary, Romania and Turkey are looking down on EU, and not the other way around.

    Maybe itț’s time the EU did something to our sh*tty governements.

    • avatar
      Jesús

      Turkey is not part of the EU.

    • avatar
      Robin

      Jesús no, but has a privileged status in relation to EU.

    • avatar
      Marin

      The EU is destroying every country it controls, while Hungary and Poland are generally expanding, and growing both in economy, and importance. In the long run, twenty years from now, the EU countries will be loosing their sovereignty to Islamist uprisings, while Hungary and Poland will be flourishing.

    • avatar
      Robin

      Marin No, it’s not. And no, Hungary is not expanding economically. The whole world is, Hungary just keeps the pace.

      Also, more and more Hungary becomes worse for its people.

      There are no Islamic uprisings, there is no god, religion is irrelevant.

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Robin Why do you pro EU fanatics hate democracy so much ?

    • avatar
      Erik

      Ivan
      “Its the economy, stupit” 😉

    • avatar
      Erik

      Nothing personal guys, its just a quote 😊

  9. avatar
    Jerzy

    Poland is a very peaceful country, while Western Europe has serious problems with Muslims. Paradoxically, Brussels deals with Poland instead of solving its own problems..

  10. avatar
    Jerzy

    More and more Poles believe that Poland should leave the EU, but not because of its members, but because of its politicians, such as Timmermans and Guy.

    • avatar
      Charlie

      Although more when polled Poland had the highest percentage of people who want to remain in the EU. My experience of living in Poland has been peaceful but so too was my 23 years in the UK. (To respond to your other point). While attacks in the west have been tragic they are not the biggest challenge Europe has, just makes entertaining/ horrific news. Having lived in both Poland’s fire and road safety strikes me as a bigger conern. If not the dismantling of the judiciary 😕 We have our problems in the west too but trust me the biggest is not the presence of brown people!

    • avatar
      Artis

      Charlie who is saying the attacks in western EU are not gonna increase?

    • avatar
      Agnieszka

      Wrong … Majority of Poles wishes to remain in EU.

    • avatar
      Marin

      Poland, Hungary, and all other sane countries should leave the manipulative EU that is destroying itself, and form a new union based on European values.

    • avatar
      Jason

      Charlie Trotter Who mentioned ‘brown people’? …he said ‘muslims’ …so basically you’ve just called all ‘brown people’ muslims….I’m sure Italians, Spaniards, Maltese etc will find this very insulting as they’re predominantly Catholic….he said the problem is with ‘muslims’ obviously referring to Islamic terrorism and you call all ‘brown people’ muslims….when virtue signalling and flying the flag for Islamic terrorism please don’t include all ‘brown people’ so you don’t come across as an uneducated tit….signed a ‘brown person’

    • avatar
      randomguy2018

      Jerzy is actually right. Younger generations are more increasingly skeptical of EU.
      While most Poles still support EU around 70-75 percent., if they keep pushing Liberal or immigration
      Its almost certain support for EU would drop to below 50 percent.
      The EUSSR politburo should be ashamed of how they have been aggressive toward Christianity, traditional values, and other such things. Look at what happened to Western Europe over a few decade.
      Hopefully right wing and populism keep increasing.

  11. avatar
    Ivan

    Strange question, it implies the EU is something other than & something above the member States, proving it really is nothing more than a occupation force of those Nation States & a dictatorship.

    • avatar
      Erik

      All EU members choose for membership instead of the UK which is a occupation of different nations.

    • avatar
      Erik

      Ivan
      EEC doesn’t exist anymore. Its called the EU quite some time 😊

    • avatar
      Erik

      Ivan
      Old news my friend. And btw its a non binding referendum.

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Erik You use that as a justification to ignore a result you do not like ? Yours are the words of a fascist dictatorship comrade.

      But thank you for proving that you can have democracy or you can have the EU but you can’t have both.

    • avatar
      Erik

      Ivan
      Oh pls, here we go again haha. So, tell me, whats the difference between the UK and EU?

    • avatar
      Mitsos

      I’d love to hear the difference between the two as well

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Erik Sure thing comrade.

      UK = 800 Years of history of spreading trade, education, democracy, peace & freedom around the world.

      EU = 25 Years of dictatorship (Soon to come to an end)

      Next stupid question please ? 8|

  12. avatar
    Zbigniew

    Poland and It’s government is treated adequately. However, the support for the people is not sufficient and the problem to be solved has nothing to do with equality.

  13. avatar
    Artur

    Portugal does not respect deadlines of directives implementation . Something happens ? I don’t think so. You can see it today at..http://www.dre.pt

  14. avatar
    Cristiana Mihaela Puiu

    El siglo XXI, en mi opinión y con todo el respeto, tiene una EU demasiado obsoleta, me refiero a los representantes de cada país europeo, que tenéis mi edad y a vosotros nadie os rechaza en el trabajo por ser viejos como yo, 59 años y todavía tengo de verdad ganas de aportar valor a la sociedad!!

  15. avatar
    Cèlia

    I don’t think so, in my opinion the th EU is extremely biased in base of the richness of each country

  16. avatar
    Peter

    Er, yes ? And Westerners who have no idea about the culture, politics and history of Poland and think the Guardian will tell them all should STFU, ’cause they don’t have a clue about my country. You can only know what’s going on in Poland if you speak Polish and read Polish press, because the English language press only presents one side of the argument, and it’s definitely not the one supported by the majority of Polish voters.

    • avatar
      José

      The majority of Polish voters would not vote staying in the EU if that implies obeying the rules.

    • avatar
      Anonymous

      The rules ? The EU frequently breaks the rules in Germany’s favour whilst strictly applying them to Slavonic states, giving Germany an advantage over us.
      State aid to airlines – with Lufthansa it was fine, but with Polish rail – no, no, no you eastern dumbasses.
      Obey rules of EU solidarity and don’t jeopardize security of eastern states ? Nah, let’s make a cool deal with Gazprom called Nord Stream II, whilst accusing eastern states of “putinisation”.
      The rules are designed to be ignored or applied in the favour of some and to the disadvantage of others.
      Western countries, Germany in particular never stopped being Nazi imperialists and still get a hardon oppressing Slavs but don’t bother about obeying the rules.

    • avatar
      Joseph

      The Poles could leave the EU- but as major beneficiaries of EU funds they would have a pretty big hole in their budget. Despite the fact their national insurance (ZUS) is cripplingly high for self-employed people. Where does the money go? On luxury cars for Rydzyk?

    • avatar
      Peter

      If one hast no argument, one mentions Rydzyk and pretends to have the moral high ground. Wtf does Rydzyk have to with ZUS ?

    • avatar
      Martyna

      Majority of Poles want to stay in EU like everywhere we also have some thick people who blame EU for everything what isn’t so great or just bad. Fortunately most of the people know how beneficial is being in EU.

    • avatar
      Peter

      Judging by the replies I’m not even going to go into who free trade really benefits, because I don’t think anybody could grasp the EU not necessarily being a good thing here, even the majority of PiS voters don’t understand basics about trade and behave like EU fanatics.

  17. avatar
    Manuel

    Ever heard about Greece? I did, especially when my bank account was shut down thank to the EU trying to manipulate a referendum. So, what’s the question again?

    • avatar
      David

      Uhm… No. That’s not how any of this works. ^^

  18. avatar
    Marco

    In a couple of year EU will not exist anymore. Hopefully.

    • avatar
      David

      Many Northerners think it’s the other way around. ^^

    • avatar
      Carmelita

      David well that takes some doing, some serious mental gymnastics!!

  19. avatar
    Bódis

    …and Romania, Slovenia, Croatia, Slovakia, Czechia, Greece.
    Yes, indeed.

  20. avatar
    Franz M

    Nobody is looking down on anybody. There are rules which need to be obliged.
    Especially were democracy, legal systemes, free media and human rights are concerned.

  21. avatar
    Franz M

    Nobody is looking down on anybody. There are rules which need to be obliged.
    Especially were democracy, legal systemes, free media and human rights are concerned.
    It’s more that governments that are rightfully under attack tend to blaim an outside “force”

  22. avatar
    randomguy2018

    In addition, I should point out that Italy is looked down on now,
    because the elites see “populists” as enemies. Italy is trying to secure borders.
    Well they are now “evil racists”. Yes when you have a pay check from Soros
    everything is racist. They are skeptical of Euro. Well they are rebels to the system. Hopefully the M5S and right coalition can resist the regime of EU.

    On the Bilderberg meeting one of the discussions is the rise of populism for a reason. The big dollar/euro/etc people do not represent the people. They represent banks, corporations, self interest.

    • avatar
      Aguysomewhere

      Italy is doing exactly what all of Europe should be doing, enforcing the borders to prevent illegal migration. Our wealth does not exist in a vacuum. Anybody that comes here legally can share in the wealth but illegals should not be able to benefit from breaking the rules of entry.

      If no country will take the boats and the boats have to start going back to africa then this practice will end, now Spain got weak and took in these people. European’s don’t have the stomach to get the job done and the third world people recognize this and act accordingly. Their African countries would never tolerate millions of illegals, they would incarcerate and deport illegals, we on the other hand rescue them, bring them to Europe and then let them walk free to disappear.

  23. avatar
    Bódis

    Just consider the application of such basic rules as the Maastricht-criterion for budget deficit: maximum 3% and no more, or else infringement procedures and fiscal babysitting are the consequence.
    Some Westen European countries were not punished for excessive budget deficit. Hungary *was* once punished because the Brusselites *thought* that the budget deficit *will* exceed the limit. Well, it didn’t. But Hungary was punished for something that didn’t even happen..

    A very democratic EU governed by the rule of law, is it?

    The attitude is fundamentally influenced by factors like having a left- or right-wing government. A left-wing government gets away with excessive police violence against political demonstrators (bloody beaten people, eyes shot out with rubber bullets) and gets away with putting many dozens of demonstrators and people captured in pubs into *jail*, all based on fake police testimonials. And there’s no question about the independence of the judiciary!

    A right-wing government tries to apply the general retirement age to judges too, and gets assulted by the EU for tyranny.

    How is that for democratic values at the EU?

  24. avatar
    Denis

    It’s countries like Hungary that spits on the plate of the other European countries. Out Hungary from the EU, with their criminal government.

    • avatar
      Denis

      I can say the same of you? Nice arguments 😂

  25. avatar
    Philip

    No as some are more equal than others. I lost all faith in this organisation despite having voted to join. This is not the EU I expected,

  26. avatar
    Joseph

    Poland receives a lot of money from the EU and you can clearly see the benefits of it. However there are arguments that the money has improved standards in cities while having little effect in rural areas. Historically too the Poles have a (justified) distrust of the Germans. However I think that complaining that the EU treats Poland badly after repeatedly attacking the EU and painting them as the enemy (check out stuff like Do Rzeczy & Gazeta Polska) is similar, and similarly hypocritical, to the Brexit supporters actions in the UK

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Don’t worry, the money every country gets is going to be reduced massively when the British tax payer stops wasting our money on the pointless EU so expect Euroscepticism to rise across the EU. Really looking forward to the MEP election next year, a lot of pro EU fanatical MEP’s are going to be out of a job 8|

    • avatar
      Joseph

      What is the point if being an anti-EU MEP? That’s like going to work just to mess up the working of the business. I will be interested to see if the savings from leaving the EU come anywhere near compensating for the costs.

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Joseph

      Pro EU MEP’s are just there to rubber stamp the unelected European Politburo dictates so the anti EU MEP’s are the true democrats who represent the people.The only way to destroy the pointless EU is from within …… & it works :)

    • avatar
      Joseph

      I think we will just have to agree to disagree. There’s no point starting an argument here.

    • avatar
      Joseph

      I understand that Euroscepticism is on the rise and may well lead to the collapse of the EU but personally I think that it is a very bad move to return to infighting in Europe- Far Right nationalists are the true enemies of freedom and democracy. This time has a distinctly 1930s feel :-(

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Joseph

      You mean infighting as in happening within the EU now ?

      You can have democracy or you can have the EU, you can’t have both.

      Fascism, Communism and now Europeanism, different flags but the same deranged lust to rule all Europe. The world has moved on but the EU is stuck in the early 20th Century & serves no purpose in the 21st.

    • avatar
      Joseph

      Unfortunately you may be right that cooperation and collaboration are no longer considered necessary, people have become too selfish to work together and share. The collapse of the EU will lead to nothing positive. But I know that there is little point arguing, like a religion there is no way to shift opinions.

    • avatar
      Mick

      Ivan you deluded twat. Open a history book. And take of the tinfoil hat.

    • avatar
      Joseph

      The League of Nations was a similar organisation and its collapse led quickly to WW2. The EU has promoted collaboration, cooperation and peace between European nations. This has been one of the longest periods of peace in Europe’s history. Divided all the old grievances and border disputes come out and then countries start fighting.

    • avatar
      Martyna

      I bet some UK politicians would like to see EU collapse as it would strengthen position of UK on the world scene but fortunately it won’t happen. We are not always united but European know exactly value of being one big Union (and not only trade wise) than 27 single countries

  27. avatar
    Ivan

    You think democratically elected governments doing what the people want them to do is fascism ? lol

  28. avatar
    Cortembos

    Ivan please open a story book before commenting, both Mussolini and Hitler were elected, it is called cesarism, because also Julius Ceasar first dictator in history was elected.
    bye

  29. avatar
    Csaba

    German economy is suffocating the east. While they are protesting for 28 hour work weeks at home, abroad their companies pay 500 euros a month in the east to their workers. EU funds were used to make nice parks and also highways for the trucks that export the products made by cheap labor like engines for Audis. While we get the lower quality garbage they can’t sell in the West. Barely any money went to create new jobs that could compete with the west and a lot more workplaces were bought up and closed to create market for their products.

    • avatar
      Adrian

      Spot on. This is EXACTLY what happened here.

  30. avatar
    Cortembos

    Ivan you are probably not living in Hungary. There is no political debate in this country. I have never seen Orban on tv, radio debating with a political opponent.

  31. avatar
    Cai Arcos Botias.

    In my opinion, this question should be divided into two different aspects: the first one is the economical one and the other the cultural one. I will proceed to discuss both of them individually:

    1.- In the economical side, it is true that different countries are treated differently according to various aspects. However, the ultimate goal of the EU is to build a democratic and meritocratic society, and because of this it is obvious that rather than treating everybody equally the objetive would be to exalt the different benefits each member has. While Germany should have (and has) more importance in decisions concerning Industry (because it is their expertise), Spain also should have the ability to make their decisions about agriculture more relevant that others. Should we praise the differents aspects and take profit of the different historical expertises each country has, efficiency and happiness would rise.

    2.- We then have the more conflictive area: the cultural one. This one is a lot more objetive, but I will do my best to remain objective. The so called “discrimination” we are seeing here comes from very different political points of view, rather than because of the different countries. This comes from the dominant liberal view than permeates all european institutions. We should strive to meet half-way, without directly assuming that neither progressism or conservadurism is the definitive answer to the question of Europe. However, this meeting should happen bilaterally, not only from the EU but also from the other countries. We tend to forget that this stereotypes are not only created by Brussels but also reinforced by those anti europeans politics who are benefited from them

  32. avatar
    Amarillis

    Why should they when Hungary is happily taking their money but disagreeing with all their values

    • avatar
      Peter

      It’s called the voluntary exchange of goods and services. You get cheap labor, products and food in exchange for money. Deal with it.

  33. avatar
    Gabriella

    In my opition there’s a lack of balance in the way in which Eu treats its members. As concers migrats I can’t understand such a “tolance” or lack of reaction towards certain East Countries’ arbitriary decisions to close fronteers. If we really want to join this great project called “Europa”, well, it’s time for everybody to take its own responsabilities. I am still faithful to Europe and I don’t really want it to be so devided inside

  34. avatar
    Peter

    Probably because you need at least two equal partners for a debate. That occasion is very rare in the EU, especially since the “left” hijacked the very concept of discourse with their -falsely- assumed moral superiority a long time ago.

  35. avatar
    Fabio

    Because right failed in moral and honesty and any other many years ago

  36. avatar
    Bert van Santen

    No, Hungary is punsihed for the wall, and the EU pays money for the wall in Turkey

  37. avatar
    Gabor

    khm because the left didn’t do the same thing “many years ago”, right? Oh, wait, that was in Eastern Europe.

  38. avatar
    Peter

    @Fabio – Incorrect. The “right” mindset values individual liberty and private ownership over government, while factoring in the necessary boundaries (eg. borders, nations) when it comes to effectively distributing wealth and praises the voluntary exchange of goods and services. The “left” forces equality of outcome, which is by definition equals theft and forced redistribution. Btw with your comment you sort of proved my point… :)

  39. avatar
    George

    Is this a rhetorical question or what? What kind of answers do you expect below?

  40. avatar
    Keith

    Germany is absolutely making a fortune whist other states die financially. The French Euro idea is a disaster

  41. avatar
    Martyna

    Hope not. Government can be changed in next years but normal people like me would suffer a lot if we would be kicked out because of those thick people 😔

  42. avatar
    Julia

    The EU is not equal. The richer countries gain abundant labour by offering higher wages and free University education. Big business take advantage of cheaper labour in certain EU countries. The rest of the countries do not attract businesses if they don’t have cheap labour. Families are broken up when kids flee to the few rich EU countries for education and work. Then the rest of the countries suffer unemployment and migration of their youth and workers. They are left to struggle giving birth to workers, students and tax payers for richer EU countries. For the EU to be more social and generate revenue in each country we need a more social EU with EU-wide minimum wage, benefits, free education, taxes. Plus a Guaranteed minimum income to generate entrepreneurship and more spending within each country by its own citizens so their economy can flourish too, in a different way. Then the minimum wage can be low in all EU countries as it subsidised (by the GMI) and all countries have an equal opportunity to attract new businesses.

    • avatar
      Bódis

      I agree with most of it, except the “EU-wide minimum wage”, which sounds attractive but will kill the weaker economies (you should study some economics).

      The problem lies in the EU competition law, which prohibits the state from participating in the economy. However, the bigger countries solve this hindrance by politics serving the interest of businesses more effectively than in the smaller countries.

      The best evidence to this is the difference in attitude towards the gas pipe lines. The Southern Stream project was killed by the EU, the Northern Stream expansion is getting built. Southern Stream would have brought a diversity of route, Northern Stream will bring no diversity at all, but the transit fees will go to Germany and Germany will control distribution.

    • avatar
      Julia

      If the EU-wide minimum wage is based on the lowest wage in the EU,which is then subsidised by the Guaranteed minimum income, how will it kill the economy of weaker countries? Can you explain to me why as I am reading enough books and economics is a bit dull for me lol. I am more of a truth and fairness person that knows the EU can pay highly trained economists to work out the details.

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Julia Well done for figuring out the point of free movement in the EU, it was not intended to benefit citizens of the the Nations States but only to supply business with cheap labour.

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Julia If it’s so blatantly obvious why do people allow their elected governments to sign up to the Brussels dictates ?

    • avatar
      Julia

      Why do people allow their government give their taxes to help the rich only instead of society as a whole, especially the vulnerable and at the expense of the people? I would say the same reasons of lack of knowledge and awareness of the truth, lack of care for eachother and those that care lack the power to do anything about it.

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Julia If I earn why should I let my government take it off me and give it to people in another country who have not earned it ?

    • avatar
      Anonymous

      That is blatantly obvious. All governments and governing bodies serve business only at the expense of people and with people’s tax money.

    • avatar
      Julia

      You give to mega-corporations, private banking shareholders, oil subsidies, tax breaks for the rich and all of them enjoying legal tax evasion loopholes who neither earned it nor deserve it. All vulnerable people not only deserve it, its a basic right so they can live in dignity. It’s not like they are going to buy a yacht, plane, golden toilet or an antique bowl for £1000000. People do not need to suffer. Suffering is created and maintained by the financial system and government. Therefore suffering can be ended. Only a cruel selfish heartless greedy person with entitlement issuses would consciously allow human-created and maintained human suffering when human suffering can be abolished.

  43. avatar
    Lino

    of course not! Peripherical countries are treated as crap, only Germany and France are important for them…

    • avatar
      Ivan

      That was the point of the EU from the very beginning, give Germany & France joint control over Continental Europe and they might stop fighting their bloody wars over it. How does it feel to be owned by Berlin & Paris ? …. mostly Berlin though.

  44. avatar
    Alex

    Of course not. Treating its members equally means giving the smallest states same powers as the biggest. Does it look like it happens?!

    • avatar
      Ivan

      You have missed the point of the EU, its not there to benefit smaller Nations. It’s only reason for being is to stop Germany & France fighting over you. Same result for most Continental countries though but with a Franco-German Empire as opposed to just a German or French Empire. Better get use to because as soon as Berlin / Paris have ‘their’ EU army there will be nothing to stop the federalists Empire builders.

    • avatar
      Alex

      Ivan Burrows i can see you know it exactly as the book. So I guess you believe that war is all about “exporting democracy” isn’t it?!

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Alex Wars are fought for one of two reasons. 1. Protection from totalitarianism / defence of democracy & 2. For power and control. The only difference between 1939 & 1993 is the EU was created with lies and deceit and not with bullets and bombs. Same outcome though, centralised power and control of continental Europe by the old enemies of Germany & France.

    • avatar
      Gianfranco

      why do you not try to portray an’image of Europe as thee founders had in mind…
      and not a place to exploit business…

  45. avatar
    Ivan

    It was never intended to treat everyone equally. The goal of the EU fanatics is to create their federalist utopia and if millions of people in certain Nations have to suffer for it then so be it.

  46. avatar
    Giulia

    No. Countries are not equal and not equally important. Some of them, richer and bigger, try to impose their conditions on the poorer ones…

    • avatar
      Ivan

      I agree but the question is ‘If you know this why is your Nation in the EU ?’

    • avatar
      Giulia

      Ivan Burrows I’m not against EU but I also think that the conditions on which EU was born were very different, maybe anachronistic now. We’ve got peace, yes, but maybe something should have changed during the years. Also I don’t agree with having same guidelines for countries with very different characteristics.

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Giulia Nothing as changed when you know the original goal was to unite Continental Europe to put an end to the wars fought mainly by France & Germany to control it. If you follow the trail of legislation from the the European Coal and Steel Community via the EEC to the EU (& beyond) it is clear what was intended is being enforced. The method maybe different but the outcome is the same, dominance over Continental Europe by Berlin & Paris. At least millions of people didn’t have to die for the new Franco /German Empire but there is still time.

    • avatar
      Edita

      Tbh at this point it just looks like we’re heading not towards a Franco-German Empire but simply a Eurabian Caliphate. I like the idea of the united Europe but this I have a huge problem with.

    • avatar
      Luca

      Not true at all dimension doesn’t matter at all, Ireland is a little country and behave like a fiscal paradise inside the EU

    • avatar
      Giulia

      Luca Argalia if you are referring to me, by “bigger” I meant economically.

    • avatar
      Παυλος

      Edita caliphate from less than 5% of the population? Its sounds More like a cheap labour force for the German empire

    • avatar
      Giulia

      Παυλος just today a study showed that in Italy salary for the migrants is at least 16% lower than for italians. It’s not fair both for them and us.

  47. avatar
    Maria

    The EU is acting like a police to some countries and like the servant towards other countries. Though we need to be making sure all countries follow the EU rules, I find there is an issue of respect towards different cultural attitudes that harms the diversity of the civilizations brought together under EU.

  48. avatar
    Panayiotis

    yes, they support Turkey until demolish Greece down to the qround, and install the democracy of Allah

    • avatar
      Panayiotis

      They don’t support Turkey but they oay Turkey to keep and hold back the illegal immigrants

  49. avatar
    Peter

    No because the solidarity is one direction. Some countries dont take refugees while they are more than willingly to accept our money. Not that I’m against Europe, but it is frustrating that lack of solidarity.

    • avatar
      Ivan

      There is no solidarity in the EU, it’s just a word used to con people into doing what they told.

  50. avatar
    Παυλος

    Nope is quite obvious that first the German and secondly French interests are above everyone’s else
    From ” € ” structure to immigration policies it’s all about serving the big ones

    • avatar
      Ivan

      Just as the EU was designed to do from the very begining.

  51. avatar
    Ivan

    Here is something you really need to think about.

    In 1942 when the Germans still thought they were going to win the war they produced a report entitled the Europaische Wirtschafts Gemeinschaft – which translates as the European Economic Community.

    The report was written by various bankers and academics and laid out a plan for how Germany would manage the economies of the conquered countries of Europe after a German victory. It was drawn up under the leadership of Professor Walter Funk the Reich’s Economics Minister and President of the Reichsbank.

    The report contained sections on Agriculture, Industry, Employment, Transport, Trade, Economic Agreements, and Currency. It proposed the ‘harmonisation’ of European currencies and a harmonised currency system.

    The evidence is in the historical record so don’t take my word for it, go look for yourself 8|

  52. avatar
    Jude

    Of course not….how can you say that !!!!Look at what they did to Greece.Look at what are Germany’s ideas of democracy…and there are so many other examples

  53. avatar
    Andrea

    well, all europeans are equals but some europeans are more equal than other.
    … what? ehm….
    look! …a migrant,
    go help him you racist!

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