Sunday, May 22, 2005

European Union?

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.


Dave said...

I also at first thought it was countries supporting their neighbors, but now I think that it just might be that the songs from neighboring countries got more radio play (either locally or by people being able to pick up radio stations from adjacent countries.)

Familiarity with a song is a big deal in a contest like this - Israel's entry grew on me with time. Had it been my first time hearing it, I'm not sure I would have liked it as much.

bar_kochba132 said...

Although Winston Churchill was one of the first to come up with the idea of a European Union after the War, it has turned into an anti-democratic monstrosity that I am sure he would be appalled at. Instead of democracy, it is a bureaucratic dictatorship that wastes immense amounts of money. There is certainly no room for the Jewish people in it and they are in the process of being squeezed out as the EU morphs into Bat Ye'or's politically correct EURABIA.
The Torah accurately described its predecessor, the "Migdal Bavel"'s society, which was a totalitarian state committed to "economic progress" (according to the Midrash people cried if a brick broke while building it while showing indifference to the people who died) in which free speech was suppressed (a "society of few words"). There are however, indications that the EU's suffocation of the human spirit is now facing renewed opposition amongst the people of Europe, so maybe there is hope!

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