On the US elections, again the unreasonable and unthinkable
Forgive us for devoting a brief space in this blog to stuff that actually matters. It is not the first time that we think we feel we are all a bit like the musicians in the Titanic, playing music as the ship sinks.
A few months ago we expressed ex post despair at “the unthinkable and unreasonable” in relation to the Brexit vote. We now feel a bit morally compelled to at least say something with regard to what could happen in the US.
Initially we were going to debate about the interesting different views of antitrust policy in Hillary’s camp (hopefully there will be time for this) and oppose them with all the antitrust trouble experienced by Trump’s companies. But we don’t even feel like making jokes about it anymore.
The issues underlying the current absurdity and that make possible this feeling of dystopian unreality are too complex to even attempt to remotely grasp them here, but the choice now could not be more radically simple.
A country that can often offer at the same time the best (too many examples) and sometimes the worst (many less examples, but sadly there) now presents its citizens with a simple choice: an open society with its real problems and imperfections or a post-truth closed promiseland (for some).
The choice is theirs, but talk about negative externalities or about the lessons of experience.
It is true, as he claims, that if he wins things won’tever be the same again.
If anyone in the US is reading this and you are undecided, please read this Slate piece on “Making the Choice”. And if you have more time, please recommend those around you to read “The Word of Yesterday”, to read “The Revolt of the Masses”, to read “Sleepwalkers” and to stop for a second and think.
Hopefully this bad dream will be over in a few hours and we can all go back to what reality and to the sensible life of true old European democracies; or can we?
I’ll now go back to prepare my lecture of this afternoon on selectivity in State aid, as if nothing were happening.