The Union is founded on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities. These values are common to the Member States in a society in which pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men prevail.'.
France and England will never be powers comparable to the United States and the Soviet Union. Nor Germany either. There remains to them only one way of playing a decisive role in the world; that is to unite to make Europe. ... We have no time to waste: Europe will be your revenge.
Today, I wish to say a few words on how the European Union can contribute to global governance. My argument is built around four words: competition, opportunities, challenges and governance. The competition that Europe faces in the 21st Century world. The opportunities created by globalization. The challenges that Europe must tackle. And, finally, the European Union as an example of international and transnational governance for the world.
The primary political motive for increased European integration [is] to enhance Europe's role in world affairs.
If you want to avoid paying taxes and have no problem with dicey business practices, Europe has a lot to offer.
We all know that the finance sector is addicted to offshore...
Politicians in Brussels have maneuvered to save him from the scandal...
Luxembourg ... multi-billion dollar tax secrets of some of the world's largest multinational corporations.
Tax havens in countries such as Luxembourg are zapping billions of euros from the coffers of developing countries...
In 2012, close to 125 million people - almost a quarter of the population in the EU - were at risk of poverty or social exclusion (see STAT/13/184). Almost 50 million are suffering severe material deprivation.
The number of children living in relative poverty is increasing across all Member States in the WHO European Region.
The EU has shown that states can come together and form a collective, in terms of sharing laws, currency, security, and other areas that are usually under the control of a singular nation state. Consequently, the traditional view of sovereignty has especially been challenged in recent years. Since the EU is made of different member states, in order for the EU to have power and sovereignty, the member states have given up much of their sovereign power.
Last year's referendums on their Accession Treaties were travesties of democracy. Public funding, the mass media and the referendum rules were grotesquely unbalanced in favour of EU accession. The EU Commission, ever anxious to increase its own power, interfered massively in favour of the Yes-side - almost certainly in breach of EU law, which gives the Commission no competence in treaty ratification.
The democratic deficit is a lack of legitimacy in that EU decisions are not sufficiently responsive to public preferences and scrutiny. This gap between elite opinion and public opinion on European integration has also been established in more empirical terms showing differences in the areas in which political elites and European publics are willing to confer power to the EU.
It has been estimated that the EU costs us around £1,000 billion a year - an incredible £2000 for every man, woman and child in Europe. So what do we get for our money?
Corruption remains a major problem in the countries of the European Union and levels are thought to have risen over the last three years.
Corruption is a disease that destroys a country from within, undermining trust in democratic institutions, weakening the accountability of political leadership and playing into the hands of organised crime groups. Corruption can only be tackled successfully through the will and commitment of leaders and decision-makers at all levels.