Jan-Werner Müller, 22 April 2021
The EU took on a task that should have brought it popularity, but for which it was ill-prepared; in the end, it performed, to quote the German finance minister, in a ‘shitty way’. As with the common currency and the refugee crisis, the union acquired features of a state – but in an incomplete and ultimately incoherent way. The Euro couldn’t function without a common fiscal policy; the shared border has lacked a unified asylum policy. And, as so often, the commission overpromised: ‘l’Europe qui protège’ ended up protecting free trade at least as much as the lives of citizens.