Challenge from Europe?
May 2, 2003
Socialist Western Europe, not fundamentalist Islam or communist China, is the most likely challenger to American cultural, military and economic dominance, says Grover Norquist.
The nations of the European Union (E.U.), with the exceptions of Britain, Ireland and perhaps Denmark, promise a welfare state of security, comfort and superficial economic egalitarianism. Europe also has a sizeable population, a gross domestic product comparable to America's, the capacity -- if not will -- to wield military power, and a driving sense of envy and anger at being surpassed by the New World. But Europe faces a number of serious problems:
- Europe has a shrinking population -- native-born citizens of nearly every E.U. nation reproduce fewer than the 2.1 children per woman needed to maintain population.
- While Arabs, Latinos, Africans and Europeans can become Americans within one generation, many European countries have a hard time assimilating their immigrants.
- The E.U.'s welfare state, high tax rates, tariff barriers and restrictive labor laws weaken its ability to generate economic growth.
- The E.U. continues to struggle with the difficulty of becoming one political unit.
According to Norquist, America should further liberalize immigration laws so her population with grow faster; end the abuse of tort law; continue to cut marginal tax rates; abolish the death and capital gains taxes; and expand her free trade zone to encompass the entire world outside Europe.
Source: Grover Norquist, "The New Fifth Column," American Enterprise, June 2003.
Browse more articles on International Issues