Several of the provisions and fundamental principles of the European Union are still unrealized but need to be put into effect if the EU is to have a positive, more creative and prosperous future. Restrictive norms have been strictly adhered to and enforced by the most powerful political forces, despite the fact that such policies have caused the damages that we all can see. By contrast, more positive alternative polices have been neglected.
Yet it is precisely these more positive policies which most faithfully reflect the real objectives and constitute the real foundation of the various Union Treaties and laws. Restrictive norms, necessary as they may appear, take on a wholly improper character when they block the Union’s fundamental objective of fostering growth and employment.
The preamble of the Maastricht Treaty states that Member States, “in view of further steps to be taken in order to advance European integration … have decided to establish a European Union”. The debate as to whether it should be a federation or a confederation of states or a new and different legal entity altogether is in full swing. Frankly, we see this as a rather philosophical debate, which does not seem – at least in the short run - to be a priority compared to the very real need for the adoption of concrete measures to solve the persistent slow growth, high unemployment and other crises afflicting the EU. Concentrating attention on solving these problems would represent a positive step forward towards the construction of our common European home.