Nationalism & euphoria: the new vertigo for the EU?


Free movement of ideas and people have been a historical positive “vertigo” that lead the process towards integration and the creation of a regional identity that print with new cultural codes. Now -and mainly after financial global crisis- this vertigo has been transformed in a negative element of euphoria fuelled by a far right agenda and populist leaders.

The defence of sovereignty in the context of a regional integration is absolute legitimate; however when is manipulated by an exacerbated nationalism it becomes a dangerous attempt to democratic values. Historically dictatorships have been based in isolationism making the defence of sovereignty a must to justify their authoritarian methods. The  paradoxical strategy of anti-European, far right groups is making citizens believe that cut with the external world is better for their development. It´s clear: globalisation has been a real threat for there goals of racism, xenophobia and defence of private interests.

Ignorance and lack of accurate information are the best allies for these groups. Globalization by the contrary has brought exactly the contrary: the empowerment of common people, the capacity for raising the voice through a unified system like social networks and the possibility to exchange information. A real revolution that transformed the civil society into an active and influential element. Therefore making governments in a constant supervision of their performance. The more informed the people are the less possibility of manipulate them.

Brexit has exposure the fact that to be anti-global and anti-European means also to be misinformed. Indeed, British voters based their votes in financial crisis and wrong management of national affairs from local leaders. To get out from Europe because of its financial impact –derivate of a global financial crisis- is a very poor argumentation. The bad management of global crisis from the European institutions and leaders only means that: an institutional crisis that needs to be addressed by joint action.

After Brexit, far rights leaders from France are living the threat for a Frexit in which security will be the pillar for erasing European identity. However, violent attacks in Nice or Charlie Hebbdo only responses to a global crisis on security and the no strategically presence of France in the Middle East. When there are no reforms of strategy at national level it leaves room for excuses to change other areas that have nothing to do with the real origin of those discontents. To attribute failures on security to a European integration is tendentious and a fake to hide a nationalist agenda. The fact that leaders like Marine Le Pen, Nigel Farage or Boris Johnson do not have an alternative model represents the best symbol of their lack of proposals that are reducing to just “be against of”. Definitely being “against” is profitable in electoral terms. To a point of absurdity that also to be against the use of burkini by Muslims women is one of the main pillar of their fragile strategy to get out of the Union.

Remarks like “immigration is an organized replacement of our population” (Marine Le Pen) shows that the European Union becomes an obstacle for their biased interests on racism and xenophobia, making the exit a solution to achieve isolationist goals. In the end, an ideology based in an isolationist economic-financial model may be a political option but not under current global framework. Make a country surrounded by national goals is not an updated political view and under the light of the proposals of this leaders there are not even considered the impact of taking isolationist decisions and inserted harmonically in a global context. There is no alternative model able to combine national and global goals in the framework of a solid strategic model. None of the leaders have proposed it; instead a “NO” dominated the stage with any tangible proposals but a constant opposition message.

The euphoria take the floor and populist leaders play with the ignorance of those citizens that do not see in those proposals a clear solution but a way to channeled their frustration against insecurity and financial crisis.

Nationalism and euphoria, euphoria and nationalism: which comes first? A difficult question although with a logical answer: both feed each other to get to current chaos of political accountability leading by populist leaders with empty promises. Is it true that emotions have always been part of the political stage and the opportunity of crisis has always been used to introduce extremist agendas, however and in this historical moment represents a profitable move for private interests and not an updated solution for facing current global challenges.

 Unreliable populist leaders with a biased political agenda and doubtful proposals creates a stage of unsafely and vertigo for European citizens. This emotional aspect is leading by fear and has a result the boost of isolationist policies at the service of a far right agenda without resolving the status quo creating by global standards within Europe and around the world. There is no a feasible strategy of this nationalist groups that could open the possibility for a new Europe based on a reliable and safety platform. Not this vertigo that is destroying the self-esteem of the citizens trying to sweep with the European identity, culture and values.

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