Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2011-07-07-Speech-4-152-000"

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"Mr President, perhaps the saddest line in all of European literature is Goethe’s observation that, in the end, we are all King Lear. We do not even have the consolation of thinking that Lear was mad and unaware of the wretchedness of his circumstances – that line of terrible pathos where he admits that, ‘to deal plainly, I fear I am not in my perfect mind’. There is one ageing entity which is not meeting its end with dignity, and that is the European Union. It is a mere 55 years old and it has become not only arthritic and irascible but is becoming, like the poor mad king, increasingly detached from reality. We saw it in the extraordinary press conference yesterday, where the President of the Commission and the President of the Council started blaming the crisis of the euro not on the intrinsic flaws of the single currency but on American rating agencies, as though somebody coming up with a better set of figures would solve the problem for them. It was impossible not to think of Lear on the heath: ‘I will do such things – what they are, yet I know not: but they shall be the terrors of the earth’. The time has come, I think, for us to pronounce the verdict on the European Union, at age 55, as was pronounced on that poor unhappy king: ‘Vex not his ghost: O, let him pass! He hates him much that would upon the rack of this tough world stretch him out longer’."@en1

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