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Europe is hardly a home for all

In the appeal ”the House of Europe is burning” ( DN 26/1) gathered thirty of Europe's top intellectuals for the words respond to the threats from högerpopulismen, in the first instance before the european Parliament elections in may 2019. It required, says the man, a united front. We who cherish liberal democracy can no longer remain silent.

But the appeal presents no analysis and offers no suggestions on what might have gone wrong and led to this situation where, as one writes, ”Europe as an idea, the will and the symbol is falling apart in front of our eyes.”

rather than repeat slogans about Europe, in the first place, a continent for those ”who still believe in Erasmus, Dante, and Goethe, and the Comenius heritage”. As well as slogans about ”the big Idea we inherited, which we believe has been the only force strong enough to lift Europe's population to a level higher than themselves and their martial past, which remains the only force respectable enough to ward off the new totalitarian attacks reminiscent of medieval misery”.

you completely forgotten about all of the outrage which has also been carried out, both within and outside the borders of Europe, in just these ideals name. As if you had not noticed to the necessary and (usually) nyanserande förnuftskritik as awareness and civilisationsidealen been exposed to during the period after the second world war.

No mention is made of the enormous economic disparities that we see today, globally, between north and south but also between the citizens of Europe. These differences are created by and/or maintained by the neo-liberal economic policies, which, in itself, proved to result in increasing social tensions in Europe and the world.

But perhaps the very worst, most terrifying, is when you write that you want to ”once again raise the torch for a Europe which, despite their mistakes, their advertising and their occasional cowardice, remain a second home for every free man and woman on the planet.”

In my eyes, appear throughout this call, like an unintentional taunt in the first place against the men and women who lost their lives in an attempt to reach a place where they hoped to live in freedom.

today, more than five years after the disaster off Lampedusa, then europeans in general, for the first time became aware of the human disaster that is the european migration and border policies means – to write that Europe is a ’second home of every free man and woman on the planet’. We know that migrants and refugees than in the day die in large numbers when they try to get to the Europe that has closed, in principle, all the legal ways to get to this alleged freedom's home on earth.

I agree fully with those who signed the appeal to democracy, as a system of government as well as moralpolitiskt rule, must be defended against right wing populism and the individuals will produce of all kinds. But even if you (as I) is in favour of a european supranational cooperation, so is the answer is hardly, as they write, a ”european patriotism”. Such a means only to nationalism moved from the nation states to the union level and that the ’fortress Europe’ further strengthened, both as an idea and in practice. In the end, this would be fatal for precisely what you want to defend, open democracy.

throughout this call, like an unintentional taunt in the first place against the men and women who lost their lives in an attempt to reach a place where they hoped to live in freedom. But also against all those who, in politics and culture, refuses to accede to an uncritical celebration of the enlightenment and its european roots.

today we know, through decades of history and research, within both the human as the social sciences, to the förnuftsideal and the democracy of Europe pride themselves in protecting, neither is unproblematic, or, when they tried to implement them in actual political situations, always have led to more justice, or even the less poor communities.

But this does not mean that these ideals must be dismissed, but, on the contrary, they must be criticised, developed and adapted in order to be able to be positively active in the day.

the approach has many of the signatories demonstrated through their works and their actions. Therefore, it is surprising that they put their name under such a half-baked text. I can't believe that they are not able to see that the problems of the liberal social order is deep within the self – in a naive förnuftstro, in a naive self-glorification in a historical selective vision. A petition that does not take its point of departure in a critique of this will be part of the problem, rather than of the solution.

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