Let’s speak European

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Ultima modifica 29 Aprile 2016

 

EU flagWe can be forgiven if we’re not up to speed on our European Union institutions, norms and acronyms. Like the organization itself, they just keep growing. So here’s a little fun guide to the buzz words we might need to know.

A for Athens, one of the cities in the EU with Awful problems but with Awesome culture

B for Brussels, the Brain of Europe. If the Brain is working we can hope that the body is too.

C for Commission, the body that looks out for the interests of the organization, C for Council of Ministers that looks out for the interests of the member states, C for Court of Justice that helps citizens who feel they haven’t got justice from their national Courts

D for Documents that we hope will soon be simplified to allow member state citizens to run their business on an equal footing

E for EEC which was what the EU was originally called; E for Euro, the common currency in use in 19 states and, in some people’s opinion the cause of Europe’s Economic woes; E for education, a priority for Europe

F for Family, another of the pillars of European integration

G for Gravy, as in the euphemism used to indicate the amounts of money EU Members of various bodies make when they travel to Europe on the Gravy Train

H for The Hague; for Human Rights which are a priority for many European organisations; for History which is something all European leaders always keep in mind

J for Justice through the European Court if a citizen is unhappy with the outcome in his national jurisdiction

K for Kopenhavn, another way of spelling the capital of Denmark which joined the EEC in 1973 and which is one of the block of rich countries in the EU

L for Leichtenstein and Luxembourg, two of the smallest and richest countries in Europe and another little one, Latvia, which is a new entry

M for Maastricht, the Treaty that introduced the Euro

N for Nationalism which has strengthened with the increased inroads the EU is making into our national sovereignty

O for Oulu, Otranto, Oporto or Porto if you’re Portuguese, Oslo, EU cities that not every citizen could pinpoint.

P for Parliament that looks out for the interests of the people, P is for Pollution that is worsening despite the best efforts of EU citizens

Q for Quorum, what candidates are constantly trying to reach. Q for Questions that never seem to be answered

R for Rome where the first Treaty was signed in 1957, R for Rumania, not a very popular country in the EU, R for Racism alive and well in many parts of the EU

S for Shenghen Treaty in 1997 which established the free movement of people among member states except for Britain and Ireland that opted out, S for Strasburg a city considered by many to be the real heart of Europe, that’s if Europe has a heart

T for Tulips that can be transported without Trade Tariffs across borders thanks to one of the many Treaties

U is for Unemployment, the main headache for the EU

V for Vienna, the cultural capital of Europe, V for Vilnius, fast becoming an entertainment hotspot

W for Water, as in how to come to terms with the fact that if countries are united they share everything, including water. Tell that to countries along the path of the Danube

X for XTRA as in Extra Communitarian as non-nationals or sans-papier are known in some parts

Y for YOUTH with the many projects that keep being dished up to help solve the seemingly irresolvable unemployment problem

Z for Zombie, which describes what we are when it comes to being European, very slow and unable to move.

Frances Fahy

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