Monday, April 7, 2014

Scientists for Europe and against nationalism

I just signed a manifesto promoted by Italian scientists in favour of progress and the United States of Europe. I encourage you to sign it. Among other things, it says this:
"The world is changing rapidly. The status quo, once considered established, has been greatly redesigned by society and the economy of knowledge. Economically depressed areas have acquired, in short time, great potential of development and growth. Knowledge, culture and innovation represent today, more than ever, the push toward the future.
To the contrary, the West and some aspects of its development model, have entered into a deep crisis. In particular, Europe appears to be not only affected by serious problems, such as unemployment, crisis in productivity and substantial reduction in welfare, but it is also apparently incapable of solving them. After only a few years from the official birth of the common currency, there is now the danger that the dream of a Europe made of people devoted to the idea, not only of a new larger Nation, but one also more open to civil rights, intrinsic human values and widespread opportunities, will be shattered. Walter Laqueur, the American historian, has spoken about “the end of the European dream”.
The responsibilities for this situation are many and varied including, to be sure, the excessive timidity in facing the process of creating a European political entity. The future should be built on the basis of political, cultural and social horizons rather than adhering to the bookkeeper’s aspiration to keep “accounts in order”. Hence, we have now a Europe of merchants and bankers, of limitations and inflexibility, a sort of gendarme that imposes often-foolish rules rather than widen horizons and promote future development.
Because of this, we are witnessing, in connection with the present crisis, an alarming growth of provincial egotisms, based on narrow self-interests, if not real outright nationalism. These phenomena often are intentionally created for exploiting real unhappiness and suffering, with the risk of causing reactions that would be directly opposed to what Europe needs."

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