Like much of the rest of Israel, I watched the annual Eurovision contest (in which we came in a respectable 4th). I was, however, struck by two, ostensibly contradictory, phenomena.
1) The songs were overwhelmingly cheap imitations of the worst on the US pop scene. These performers would not have lasted ten seconds on 'American Idol.' Furthermore, the evening was testimony to the deleterious effects of globalization. Nations abdicate their languages, culture, and pride in order to become tacky imitations of an America they loathe.
2) The voting pattern was striking. Overwhelmingly, the voting was local. Slavs voted for slavic countries, former Yugoslavs voted for each other, Greeks voted for each other (Albania, Cyprus), Former members of the USSR voted for each other. [Turkey voted for Greece, which was a stunner.]
I'm not sure what all of this means. One thing is clear, there is no European Union. There is a culturally American conglomeration of regional alliances. If the EU Constitution fails, so will the EU.
To Tom Friedman: Olive Tree 12 Lexus 0.