Monday, April 17, 2006

Overused analogy alert.

From The Austrailian:

CONTINENTAL Europe is at a crossroads. No, scratch that. Continental Europe was at a crossroads a few years ago. This week, it appears to have chosen its path. Taken together, the results of Italy's general election (which turfed out an economic reformer in favour of a former EU president) and the French Government's cave-in to rioters protesting against employment law reform suggest that the strongest forces in Europe today are those of appeasement, stasis and socialism. In Italy, voters were faced with a choice between media mogul Silvio Berlusconi, who was swept into office five years ago promising to cure the country's economic troubles, and the centre-left Romano Prodi, whose campaign was tinged with anti-Americanism.
But wait. It gets worse:
None of this is good news for Europe. At a bare minimum, the past week's events suggest that this is a part of the world where no one is capable of facing reality. It also suggests a broader lack of cultural confidence. Europeans are not having children at replacement rates any more; birth rates are supported largely by Muslim immigrants. And that community's more radical members are increasingly flexing their political muscle in the face of a timorous host culture. An example is the fallout of the Danish cartoon controversy. In what was essentially a battle between theocratic and Enlightenment values, the theocrats largely won.

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