One useful outcome of the Chinese Olympics might be that it gives EU citizens pause to ponder how the EU imagines that it can safely continue to operate on the basis of 50 year old assumptions about the rest of the world.
DeGaul's vision of a European superstate as the reincarnation of a Franco Prussian Empire did not begin to take into account the fact that Asia was eventually going to be embarrassingly ahead of our sorry manufacturing industry in almost every area of endeavour.
It may be simplistic to observe that the rapid (re)ascent of Asia, leading to the present commodity crisis, is because Asian factories do not operate with one arm tied behind their back by the mountains of restrictive legislation and petty rules that afflict EU business. But it seems to be inconveniently and unavoidably true.
If EU citizens are happy to buy products from factories that employ 14 years olds working 60 hour weeks in countries that don't bother with the niceties of boring things like Health & Safety and planning permission, then how do they imagine Europe can survive as rest home for the disadvantaged and witlessly politically correct..?
The Chinese went to great pains during the opening ceremony to remind us that they pretty much invented most of the cornerstones of civilization (while we were still skinning sabre toothed tigers with flints) during the opening ceremony. And then they rubbed in the fact that now also rule the roost in most aspects of consumer technology with a tour de force of digital electronic wizardry.
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